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  1. #1
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    Road and MTB for 55" boy w/ 23 1/2" inseam

    I'm looking for a MTB and road bike for my 8 y/o son. He's 55" with a 23 1/2" inseam with no shoes and 58 lbs.

    He's on a 20" Gary Fisher Precaliber now. It's good for now as he can maneuver it really well.

    Price isn't much of an issue as much as value. I've searched an have seen lots of options. I've got a 26" bike that I could swap to a XXS frame and smaller cranks.

    Would prefer to just buy a complete bike and not build unless it makes sense.

    Also interested in buying a <20 lb bike that someone else's kid has outgrown.
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  2. #2
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    Cannondale Race 24 or the Opus Fever.

    My daughter is the same height and I'm getting her the Cannondale.

    Retails for $550
    Highlights
    RST F1RST Air fork
    Comes set up w V Brakes but the frame and Fork are DiSC ready


    Opus Fever
    US retail: 789
    Highlights:
    Suntour Air Fork w lockout
    Shimano 446 Hydro Disc brakes
    8 Speed drivetrain
    8 speed 11-32 cassette
    104/64 bcd crankset
    SRAM X4 components

    I would've gone with the Opus as it's the clear winner but also $230 more then the Cannondale. Budget factor drove me to the Cannondale but I will be upgrading the Cannondale's drivetrain, wheels and brakes as the budget allows.

  3. #3
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    There are a few 24" or 26" Islabikes that would fit and be lightweight.

    Spawn Cycles is also releasing a 24" bike in June that should be great but retail around Canadian $1200. It will have 2 piece thru axle cranks and an external bearing bottom bracket, ISCG-05 tabs, SRAM X7 type 2 rear derailleur, and an integrated headset.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Road and MTB for 55&quot; boy w/ 23 1/2&quot; inseam-1402839_606921112723759_6358232742772449144_o.jpg  

    Last edited by Amom; 05-14-2014 at 02:01 PM. Reason: added pic from Spawn's facebook page

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amom View Post
    There are a few 24" or 26" Islabikes that would fit and be lightweight.

    Spawn Cycles is also releasing a 24" bike in June that should be great but retail around Canadian $1200.
    Once you hit the price point of those two, you can start with the Cannondale and end up with a better bike at the same price with upgrades.
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  5. #5
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    Road Bike: Redline Conquest 24 (cross bike actually but all you'll really need is a tire swap)

    Specialized, Trek, Felt and probably others all make actual 24" road bikes but I feel like the Redline is the best value out there.

    You son must be a stick My just turned 8yr old is the same height but ~80lbs
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by mountaingoatepics View Post
    Cannondale Race 24 or the Opus Fever.

    My daughter is the same height and I'm getting her the Cannondale.

    Retails for $550
    Highlights
    RST F1RST Air fork
    Comes set up w V Brakes but the frame and Fork are DiSC ready


    Opus Fever
    US retail: 789
    Highlights:
    Suntour Air Fork w lockout
    Shimano 446 Hydro Disc brakes
    8 Speed drivetrain
    8 speed 11-32 cassette
    104/64 bcd crankset
    SRAM X4 components

    I would've gone with the Opus as it's the clear winner but also $230 more then the Cannondale. Budget factor drove me to the Cannondale but I will be upgrading the Cannondale's drivetrain, wheels and brakes as the budget allows.

    That's good info. I thought about the Cannondale with upgrades, but, the Islabikes look solid.

    The Scott Spark RC Jr looks good too.

    My big question is whether to buy two $500 bikes (road and MTB) or one $1000 bike?
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  7. #7
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    My boy rides 24" NS-clash jr... cost is about $1K

    Road and MTB for 55&quot; boy w/ 23 1/2&quot; inseam-img_0304.jpg

    - Frame: NS 6061-T6 custom formed and butted tubes
    - Fork: Suntour SF13-XCM 26,100 mm Travel, 9 mm axle, soft spring
    - Headset: FSA semi integrated ZS44 / cartridge
    - Stem: New NS Bikes Quantum 25.4, 37mm reach
    - Handlebar: NS Junior Bars, alloy, 680mm, low rise
    - Grips: Octane One flange
    - Brakes: Tektro Novela 160 front & rear
    - Shifters: SRAM Gripshift ESP 3.0, 7spd
    - Derailleurs: SRAM X3 medium cage rear, 7spd
    - Chainguide: E13 LG1
    - Bottom bracket: FSA square BB
    - Cranks: Lasco 165mm, 32t single ring
    - Chain: KMC Z-72
    - Cassette: Sram PG-730 7 speed 12-32
    - Rims: NS Fundamental 24
    - Hubs: Joytech 9 mm bolt-on front, Joytech cassette 10 mm bolt-on rear.
    - Spokes: black spokes w/14mm black nipple
    - Tires: Kenda Small Block 8 24x2.1 rear & front
    - Seatpost: Kalloy 30.9
    - Saddle: Octane One Junior
    - Pedals: Odyssey PC
    - Weight: ~ 13.3 kg including pedals

  8. #8
    CJH
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    Quote Originally Posted by wmac View Post
    My big question is whether to buy two $500 bikes (road and MTB) or one $1000 bike?
    I would be inclined to go with one bike and maybe splurge for a second set of wheels so you can swap back and forth. My boys are turning five and six in the next few months and when I think about them being 8 years old and riding on the street I somehow feel like I'd be more comfortable if they were on MTBs and could quickly ride into a ditch, hop onto curbs, or whatever.

    But maybe you have paths where your son can log long miles safely on a road bike?

    Another thing to think about is how badly do you think he'll need a suspension fork? If yes, look for one with lockout or maybe then lean towards separate bikes.

    Do you have any pics of your son at 55" tall riding the 20" Precaliber? I'm looking for one to build up for my boys and your son seems to have a similar build as theirs (long torso and short legs??). I'd like to see what a 55" tall with their build looks like on the bike.

    Also, if you have any interest in selling it, please let me know. Is it the geared bike or the single speed version?

  9. #9
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    55" is probably "close enough" for a 26" bike unless he is racing and really needs every advantage. You can pick up an older Specialized Stumpjumper M2 frame for $100-$150 on ebay, I have a 15" as a pump track bike and with the seat slammed it is 30" from the ground. I have a 32" inseam and my trail bike seat is at 40", so it's about the same difference. The frame is very light, my single speed weighs 20 lbs with a steel fork, aluminum bars, and 700g tires plus tubes. Carbon and XC tires you could be under 20 with a 1x10 setup.

    That frame with a straight seatpost, short cranks, and 30mm stem would probably fit well for awhile, then just add a layback seatpost and longer stem/riser bars as he needs them. Not quite as simple as just buying a bike but you could put better components on it for the "long haul".

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by CJH View Post
    I would be inclined to go with one bike and maybe splurge for a second set of wheels so you can swap back and forth. My boys are turning five and six in the next few months and when I think about them being 8 years old and riding on the street I somehow feel like I'd be more comfortable if they were on MTBs and could quickly ride into a ditch, hop onto curbs, or whatever.

    But maybe you have paths where your son can log long miles safely on a road bike?

    Another thing to think about is how badly do you think he'll need a suspension fork? If yes, look for one with lockout or maybe then lean towards separate bikes.

    Do you have any pics of your son at 55" tall riding the 20" Precaliber? I'm looking for one to build up for my boys and your son seems to have a similar build as theirs (long torso and short legs??). I'd like to see what a 55" tall with their build looks like on the bike.

    Also, if you have any interest in selling it, please let me know. Is it the geared bike or the single speed version?
    It's the geared bike and it fits him perfect for now. He may be a little big for it, but, I like how well he can handle and control it. He's a swimmer and will be doing some Triathlons with me this summer. The PreCaliber is okay as we are doing the them for fun. I'd just like to get him on a proper road bike and take him on some longer rides with me.

    I hesitate putting him on a 26" MTB and not being able to handle it, falling, getting frustrated, etc.

    I've got a 26" bike I could swap to an XXS frame when the time is right. Maybe I'll keep him on the PreCaliber for a little while longer until I can step him up to a 26" bike. And go with the Scott JR road bike.

    You guys have been really helpful. I appreciate your ideas.
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  11. #11
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    Nice bike! Can't see a US dealer.
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  12. #12
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    That's a solid looking bike!
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  13. #13
    CJH
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    Quote Originally Posted by wmac View Post
    He's a swimmer and will be doing some Triathlons with me this summer.
    You know I almost made a comment about getting him into swimming when I saw his proportions. If he's going to do some triathlons then I'd be more inclined to get him separate road and mountain bikes.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by wmac View Post
    Nice bike! Can't see a US dealer.
    Lamacycles.com is a U.S. distributor... you may purchase directly from them or one of their dealers in the U.S.

    I ordered my from Chain Reaction Cycles from the U.K. That had been the second bike I ordered from them and shipping to the U.S. with no problems.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by CJH View Post
    You know I almost made a comment about getting him into swimming when I saw his proportions. If he's going to do some triathlons then I'd be more inclined to get him separate road and mountain bikes.
    Yes, I think that's the best thing for now. Thanks everyone!
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  16. #16
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    Also, here's a pic of him back in November. He's grown a couple inches since then.

    Uploaded with Imgupr
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  17. #17
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    Hey guys, I still haven't pulled the trigger on anything. We looked at some bikes and I'm just not thrilled to spend $500 on a 26+ lb bike or $1k on a 24 lb bike.

    I'm considering this as I'm not convinced the suspension fork is worth the weight penalty: Islabikes Beinn 24 lightweight bike for kids aged 7+

    Thoughts?
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  18. #18
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    I've been looking for ages too for a 24" bike for my daughter. Options out there all have some major compromises in my opinion.
    Giant XTC is a boat anchor at 29lbs, Jamis is heavy and has a high bottom bracket which affects pedaling form.
    Specialized seem middle of the road in spec and weight but not outstanding in any area.
    The Cannondale race that lots of folks on this forum seem to love is nice in that it has an air fork but its a downgraded version from the aftermarket one in that it has no rebound adjustment and the other components on that bike are about the lowest of the low and all for $550.
    The trek superfly disc is about the lightest I've found (25.4lbs no pedals) with a marginally better drivetrain than some other 24" bikes but like all the kids treks it also seems to have a longer top tube that stretches my kid a bit too much.
    I can bring myself to drop $1000 on the Islabikes Craig or the Scott RC JR.
    I'm very interested in the Rocky Mountain Vertex right now - fairly expensive at ~$850 retail but component spec is nicer and would avoid my urge to pour more money into upgrades - if only i could find one to test ride......

  19. #19
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    I agree dcp. The Beinn weighs in under 20 lbs, has a decent spec with some kid specific parts. I wouldn't have a problem dropping the cash on the Creig or RC JR if I thought the value was there. He's not racing or serious enough to need anything more. I'll let everyone know my thoughts when I get it.
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