Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 26
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    42

    Kids mountain bike size

    Hello,

    Is a 24" (wheel size) mountain bike too big for a 7 1/2 year old?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    148
    It depends. How tall is the child and what is the inseam length? If it would be a borderline fit now I would say go ahead and do it. You will get more use out of it and he/she is about the age where growing starts to accelerate. If it is too big try a 20" (assuming they aren't on a 20" now) and it will help build confidence in riding, but then you will either face buying another bike in about a year or try to wait a bit more and get a small size adult (26").

  3. #3
    Mud Honey
    Reputation: Fabulous's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    98
    My 9 1/2 year old is just moving up to a 24" bike. He's 54" tall. I got him a 20" bike for his 7th birthday and he rode that until this last weekend. I highly recommend taking your kiddo into your LBS to have a proper fitting done before you buy a bike. A lot of the kids bikes come with adjustable everything so the bike can grow with the kid. The drawback to this is it adds a lot of extra weight.
    And at the end of the day, she smelled of dirt.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Ka_Jun's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    61

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    902
    Generally a 24" bike will be to big for an average 7.5 year old.
    If you're not falling, then you're not riding fast enough!
    Ibex Asta Pro SE & Giant XTC-2

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    310

    rule of thumb for kids' bike sizes

    I work part time in bike sales and have 3 riding grandkids. In general, I have found that 5.5 to 6-yr-olds do fine on 20" wheeled bikes, 7.5 to 8-yr-olds are right for 24" wheeled bikes. At 54" in height, even though a full size bike is technically too big, many kids can handle a 12-13" (frame size) 26" wheeled mtn bike.

    All kids are different, so ymmv.

  7. #7
    More carbon fiber please!
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    684
    Just tonight got our 9 yr old daughter a 24" bike, an '08 Trek 220. She fits on it very well and there is a ton of room for her to grow as well. One nice thing about a decent quality bike is that you can change out the stem easily if their arms really grow, so you can quickly do more than just raise the seat up. I also like the dual pedal mount holes so as the legs grow you can move them to the longer crank arm position. I'd imagine this bike will be good for the next 3 years as she continues to grow.

  8. #8
    Alien Surf Team
    Reputation: Razorfish's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    1,169
    My 9 y/o daughter has been riding a small 26 for 6 months. I don't know her height off-hand but she's an average height 9 y/o girl.

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation: DiRt DeViL's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    4,800
    It will depend on their height off course, don't push a bigger tire just because but if you still want to move to the bigger wheels check the frames with sloping top tubes so standover is not a big deal.

    When my son moved from 20" to 24" the seat was all the way down and a super short stem to make the cockpit smaller, eventually the seat went up and a regular stem in place. Two XC seasons later he moved to a 26" bike with sloping top tube (XS GF Marlin).

    Now he's into DH and is running a Small/Medium Norco with 24" wheels to lower the bike for his height. If things go as planned and we sell his roadie we'll get him a Transition Syren and move him to 26" wheels.

  10. #10
    Weekend Warrior
    Reputation: daleksic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    1,078
    I just took my (soon to be) 7 year old to several LBSs to try out for a 24" Specialized bike, but he's still a little to small for it. He fits fine on his 20" BMX but he wants a MTB like Daddy with suspension and gears.

    I hat dragging him out on his 20" BMX, but I'm not going to buy a 20" MTB so he can ride for just 1 year. That's $250 that can go towards a nice 24" for his next birthday.

    This brings me to my next dillema. Do I sell his old 20" bike when its time or hold on to it for my 2 year old daugther to ride it in a few years? She just got a Specialized Hotwalk and these bikes just aren't cheap either. I was thinking just to keep it, revive it in a view years by repainting it in pink and white and get out of it cheap(ly)

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    902
    Keep it. Last year I bought my 6 year old a 20" XC bike and he rides it alot, but he still also rides his 16" bmx bike because he likes to toss it around.
    If you're not falling, then you're not riding fast enough!
    Ibex Asta Pro SE & Giant XTC-2

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    24
    Maybe I'm a bit old school but I don't think a kids BMX bike can be replaced by a mountain bike, so keep the BMX bike. When they are tooling around the neighborhood with their friends the BMX is way better and you don't want him putting the wear and tear on a nice mountain bike that a kid will put a bmx bike through. I think of all the stuff I did on a bmx bike as a kid and there is no way a mountain bike would have held up....my dad would have constantly been pissed off at me having to replace all the broken parts. The simplicity of the BMX bike is key to its durability.

    My boy will definitely have a both and the MTB will only be ridden on the trails. For now I have the same dilemma, spend $ on a 20" MTB or wait another year or two for him to fit a 24" Trek 220? Guess I'll see how much he grows over the winter.

  13. #13
    Nuts
    Reputation: bdundee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    4,684
    Our 6 year old is on a 24" but he is tall for his age.
    And I love beer!!

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation: LB412's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    879
    Quote Originally Posted by Razorfish View Post
    My 9 y/o daughter has been riding a small 26 for 6 months. I don't know her height off-hand but she's an average height 9 y/o girl.
    My 9 year old girl is on a 14" 26 wheel. We rode 8 miles in the mountains today. The bike is a hair to big but will be perfect in 6 months. She thinks its great now!

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation: LB412's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    879
    Quote Originally Posted by LB412 View Post
    My 9 year old girl is on a 14" 26 wheel. We rode 8 miles in the mountains today. The bike is a hair to big but will be perfect in 6 months. She thinks its great now!
    Failed to mention she is 4'9"

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    10
    Quote Originally Posted by LB412 View Post
    Failed to mention she is 4'9"
    I think the OP's kid is probably big enough for a 26" wheeled bike by now

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    4
    Quote Originally Posted by skiploder View Post
    I think the OP's kid is probably big enough for a 26" wheeled bike by now
    Lol...I think you are correct!

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    2
    So, general theme seems to be at 9yr old they may start to outgrow the 24" and be ready for the 26"?

  19. #19
    Havok
    Reputation: Jordan300's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    209
    Some people are all for moving up to the larger wheel. Some people think giving them more time on a smaller bike can improve their handling skills. I have a friend who just put his 9yr old onto a 26" and it's a little big, but he manages just fine.

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    805
    Quote Originally Posted by thegrozz View Post
    So, general theme seems to be at 9yr old they may start to outgrow the 24" and be ready for the 26"?
    Typically, a 24" frame should provide a bit more standover height but the top tube length of 24" frames are only a bit shorter than an XS 26". You could easily change stem length a couple of times as they grow in order to keep them fitting on the 24" longer. Other consideration is where the frame locates the handlebars, most 26" bikes (especially with much front suspension) will put the handlebars very high up in relation to the seat height for a kid. A 24" frame and short A-C fork can help keep the handlebars reasonably level with the seat instead of at chest height.

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    714
    Quote Originally Posted by Jordan300 View Post
    Some people are all for moving up to the larger wheel. Some people think giving them more time on a smaller bike can improve their handling skills. I have a friend who just put his 9yr old onto a 26" and it's a little big, but he manages just fine.
    ^^ I'm of this opinion.

    It's pretty simple really:

    Step one: Take front wheel out of 24" and 26" bike.

    Step two: Put both wheels between legs. 26" first, 24" second.

    Step three: if kid crotches 26" and has to tip toe over 26" in order not to touch, kid needs 24". If kid crotches 24" on tip toes, kid needs 20".

    Generally our kids have fit 24" from 50" to 57". 50" is seat slammed on a 24" at 7.5 years on average for our "50th percentile" kids. 56" is really in between sizes, but technical trails should still be on 24" due to much better stand over. Once 5 feet tall, 26" wheel 13" frame bikes work well. They grow like weeds once they hit 9-10 or so!

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    310
    A lot depends on what style of riding your kid likes. See my post above (long time ago!) for my general view on this. If you're taking them out on even mildly technical xc trails the bigger wheels may give them more confidence (did with my grands). But if your kid likes to jump, etc, keeping them on smaller wheels as long as possible may be better. Each of my grands in the same immediate family were all different; one did great on a 24" wheeler for years even tho' he wasn't terribly aggressive, another didn't learn til he was too big for a 20" and then almost immediately hopped to a 26", etc. Taking them to the LBS is good advice. Maybe right after you've had them seen by a pediatrician!

  23. #23
    ilmfat
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    858
    i got my then 4.5 year old on a 20" asap.

    she'll be going to 24" asap, and 26" asap.

    i got a 3 yr old im gonna jam onto a spawn banshee asap.

    i look at it like this, my 16" sette reken felt just fine, but then i got an 18" jabberwocky, and now i cant go back to tiny wheel short TT bikes.

    kids are very adaptable.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb.

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    444
    My 8 year old rides a 24 inch Kona and he loves it. He is on the cusp or going up to a 12.5 size womens specialized era comp - I am looking for a decent 155-165mm crank for this bike right now.

    Take a look at Islabikes for some great kids rides- they are all kids specific - we just picked up a 26 inch cyclocross bike from these guys- they are new to the US but have been in the uk for a while
    Rocky Mountain Element
    Orbea Lobular CX

  25. #25
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    250
    I did put my youngest son on a 16" wheel before he was three, and he is small for his age - 36" tall at 3. He had been riding (without training wheels) for over a year and the small 12" wheels were really holding him back on bumpy ground (we have loads of tree rooty trails). However I will be keeping him on his 16" until he is at least 5.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •