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  1. #1
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    high-end 20" MTB

    I am in the market for a really good 20" bike for my daughter. It should be light despite full suspension, and it should have good strong disc brakes. I am prepared to spend some. Any suggestions? Many thanks in advance!

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    Check out Home Page also find us on FaceBook @ LiL Shredder Bikes

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    Quote Originally Posted by adriano View Post
    I am in the market for a really good 20" bike for my daughter. It should be light despite full suspension, and it should have good strong disc brakes. I am prepared to spend some. Any suggestions? Many thanks in advance!
    Define spend some?

    There is little shredders as mentioned above. I would have loved to go that route, but couldn't.

    I lucked out and found a Kona Shred 2.0 used. They are $500 new and not exactly light stock and not FS.

    There's the SCOTT Spark JR 20 which is FS but not disk. Also around $500.

    Not trying to take sales away from Little Shredders, but unless your kids ride like the ones I see in his videos, I can't see the need for FS on a 20 inch bike, though I'll admit if I had money just laying around I'd get one for sure.
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  4. #4
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    Not sure of a 20" disk brake fs, if one is out there its probably a brick. kids really don't need suspension, they need a lightweight bike. peddling a 40lbs bike when you only weigh 50lbs would SUCK. I bought a 24" hot rock with hydros from specialized. It's nice, about 25lbs (now) but its definitely not a little shredder.

    If I would have known about little shredders 2 years ago I for sure would have bought one. I looked high & low for a USA made kids bike.

  5. #5
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    I built my son's last two bikes. The 20" was a Gary Fisher Precaliber. Bought it brand new, was disappointed in the weight and gearing, so I went to town on it.
    His current bike is a Craigslist 24" GF Tyro. I bought the bike complete for 60 bucks. Stripped it to the bare frame, built wheels, a 1x10 X7 drivetrain, Avid Elixirs and a 26" manitou fork.
    It's WAY lighter than any store bought bike. The lightness is a bigger deal than full suspension in my book.
    I like turtles

  6. #6
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    IBEX 320k

    My son's last bike was an IBEX 320k that I bought second-hand from someone at work.

    Its a great bike.. only about 24lbs. I know it doesn't have disc brakes, but we never had a problem with stopping power. The only thing we ever didn't like was the twist-shifts, but the new model has trigger shifters. Would buy it again in a heartbeat.

    The reviews here for the kids ibex bikes are pretty good too.

    They're sold out right now, but I talked to the owner and he said they were hoping to have more in by Christmas

    ibexbikes.com/products/index.asp?product_key=16

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    Not disc brakes but if you're just looking for something good for a great price, a Specialized Hotrock 20" 6-speed with front shock is 24.5lbs. The 2011 Hotrock "Street" (stright aluminum fork) is 23 lbs. Used on Craigslist these can be had in good condition for right around the $100 ~ $150 mark.

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  8. #8
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    Ooooh! Disc Brakes! Here you go! Only $350!!!

    Ferrari CX-30 20" Kids' Mountain Bike
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rondo View Post
    Ooooh! Disc Brakes! Here you go! Only $350!!!

    Ferrari CX-30 20" Kids' Mountain Bike
    He said high end with disc, not just disc
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    LOL!

    What's not high end about a Farrari?


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    I think this is what the guy was asking about
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails high-end 20" MTB-imag0901.jpg  


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    drool.....

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    Thank you everybody for all these good ideas and suggestions.

    The little shredders look good, and - at a price point of >2500$ - they better be!

    What worries me about the shredders is the dearth of specific information. The bikes are labelled as "light" but they look rather heavy. The specs are nowhere to be found (web page says "coming soon"). The bikes are hopefully more carefully constructed than the sentences on the web page ("satisfy there needs" etc.).

    The Specialized looks much lighter than the shredder, and published specs are available - which is reassuring. But it is a much simpler bike and has no disc brakes (which for me is a must).

    Nevertheless, the shredders may be my best option despite there () hefty price. It would be good to get some independent opinions on them though (i.e. not from the vendor).

  14. #14
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    Why are disk brakes a "must"? I've never had a problem stopping with V-brakes, and neither have my kids. They also do fine without full suspension. They're barely heavy enough to compress the front shock, let alone get any use from rear suspension.
    A hardtail in the 20" size will be lighter than a similarly equipped full suspension.
    You're coming off as a guy that just wants his kid to have the blingiest most expensive bike on the trail. Hopefully he won't be left in the dust by a kid on a hand-me-down Specialized, or even worse, department store bike. My 6 year old out-rides many kids older than her on her 05 Specialized Hot Rock with rigid front fork and v-brakes.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by indianadave View Post
    Why are disk brakes a "must"? I've never had a problem stopping with V-brakes, and neither have my kids. They also do fine without full suspension. They're barely heavy enough to compress the front shock, let alone get any use from rear suspension.
    A hardtail in the 20" size will be lighter than a similarly equipped full suspension.
    Oh, the disc brakes seem important to me because my kid (it's actually a daughter) has complained that her hands are aching after a while downhill. The braking by and in itself is no problem with V-Brakes, but they do require more force. She also complains about bumps, and hence the fully.

    Quote Originally Posted by indianadave View Post
    You're coming off as a guy that just wants his kid to have the blingiest most expensive bike on the trail. Hopefully he won't be left in the dust by a kid on a hand-me-down Specialized, or even worse, department store bike. My 6 year old out-rides many kids older than her on her 05 Specialized Hot Rock with rigid front fork and v-brakes.
    I can understand that I come across like that. It's difficult to convey nuances in a forum post. But frankly the thing is, I am not competitive and neither is she. No problem with being outridden by everybody and his brother (and sister). We just want to enjoy the outdoors! If that means forking out some money - well, my kids is really the only reason why I saved it

    But I do agree with you that weight probably "outweighs" all other considerations. There is no point in buying her a comfortable MTB if she will hate it because of the extra effort pedaling uphill.

  16. #16
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    You get one of those bling bikes and you're looking at a severe downgrade when you get to 24". As far as I can tell there is no good 24" fork out there.

  17. #17
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    Adriano, that's probably the best reason to buy disc brakes as my kids have made that the biggest complaint as well. I opted to just have them get used to it and build hand strength but as a result we are always stopping for water and "hand" rest breaks.

    If I could afford one of Demo9's bikes I would have bought one in a heartbeat but that was not to be as I support the whole family on one small income. Only thing I could do was setup a nice smooth operating set of V-brakes and make sure they're always lubed well.

    It's all about the fun. Do what you can. The best thing is that we are all doing it in a family way!


  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by kuan View Post
    You get one of those bling bikes and you're looking at a severe downgrade when you get to 24". As far as I can tell there is no good 24" fork out there.
    You haven't looked in the right place yet. Contact Demo9 at little shredders.
    He imported a bunch of 20 inch and 24 inch air forks. About 1/2 lb lighter and much better action. I have one on my son Marin Bayview SE.
    Last edited by TwoTone; 09-30-2012 at 08:09 AM.
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  19. #19
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    Rondo, you have exactly captured my motivation and the gist of my reasoning!

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    Food for thought on the elusive 24" bike.

    According to size charts, a 20" bike is usually good for some one up to 4'8". A Santa Cruz Juliana is good for some one as small as 4'8". What about finding a used XS Juliana frame and building it up accordingly? I realize the TT will be long, and probably won't work for someone much under 4'6" or so. But maybe a single ring up front, a 80mm fork, and 24" wheels? When they grow a little more, throw on a 100mm fork and some 26" wheels. My oldest daughter is pushing 4 feet so this is something I am pondering.

    Either way, Thanks to the OP for the thread. Got some good info and ideas for when the time comes to drop some $$$.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by BXCc View Post
    Food for thought on the elusive 24" bike.

    According to size charts, a 20" bike is usually good for some one up to 4'8". A Santa Cruz Juliana is good for some one as small as 4'8". What about finding a used XS Juliana frame and building it up accordingly? I realize the TT will be long, and probably won't work for someone much under 4'6" or so. But maybe a single ring up front, a 80mm fork, and 24" wheels? When they grow a little more, throw on a 100mm fork and some 26" wheels. My oldest daughter is pushing 4 feet so this is something I am pondering.

    Either way, Thanks to the OP for the thread. Got some good info and ideas for when the time comes to drop some $$$.
    24 inch bike isn't elusive, plenty of decent ones out there. The TT makes a HUGE difference. I had everything to build a XS 26 inch bike with 24 inch wheels. Once I saw my son stretched out on it I sold the frame and fork and bought a proper 24.
    Last edited by TwoTone; 09-29-2012 at 06:37 PM.
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  22. #22
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    My 9 yr old (under 4') does really well on an XS Lynskey w/ 26" wheels. It looks like a small size 29er. I depated going with 24" wheels or 26" and I am very happy I went with the 26" wheels. There are just so many more options. It was pretty easy to get his bike under 17.5lbs.

  23. #23
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    For what is worth... I went through this same dilemma 6 months ago. 4 year old boy who was more talented than anything the big companies put on the market in the small size.

    My solution was to get a Hotrock frame and strip the parts and build it up as a sub 20 lbs bike. Not for the someone who is unfamiliar with working on bikes, but the end result is pretty cost effective.

    And for what is worth.... Nice V brakes, set up well, give huge stopping power with 20" wheels. My 4 year old can lock them up no problem. So, in my opinion, unless you ride in the wet a lot, the V brakes are an acceptable compromise when weighing cost versus performance for the small bikes. Of course, I am sure there are valid counter points.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    You haven't looked in the right place yet. Contact Demo9 at little shredders.
    He imported a bunch of 20 inch and 24 inch air forks. About 1/2 lighter and much better action. I have one on my son Marin Bayview SE.
    I just figured that out yesterday after I posted. I gotta hit this forum more. Would have saved me tons of grief.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Surfpoodi View Post
    Nice V brakes, set up well, give huge stopping power with 20" wheels. Of course, I am sure there are valid counter points.
    Yes, my daughter has huge stopping power alright, but she complains about aching hands! I suspect that the issue is less V vs disc, but rather cable vs hydraulics. My hunch is that it is primarily the hydraulics that dramatically lowers the force needed at the lever. Hydralulic Magura brakes are non-disc, and yet they also require very little force.

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