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  1. #1
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    Small Bike Options

    I am looking into purchasing a small bike for my 7 year old daughter who is about 46 inches tall. She is currently riding her brother's hand-me down 16 inch Giant Animator. However, I think she is ready to take a step up to something with hand brakes and gears for the handful of hills we encounter.

    I am looking for a used bike as I don't envision it lasting more than a couple of years. Right now, I am thinking about an old (2000 or 2001) Specialized Hot Rock or a more recent vintage (2004?) Trek MT60. Both bikes appear to be in decent shape, with some minor rust on the chain.

    Both bikes have 20" tires. The Specialized has a rigid fork, the Trek has a front suspension. I hear that the suspension is not worth the weight for kids. The price is comparable for each bike -- ~$65.

    Does anyone have any thoughts regarding either bike? I know Specialized has a good reputation. But I wasn't sure if there were any reasons why the Trek might be more compelling.

    Thank you very much for any thoughts.

  2. #2
    turtles make me hot
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    I bet the fork on the Trek weighs a ton.
    I like turtles

  3. #3
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    If I had to do over, my kids 20 inch bike would have been rigid for the weight. My son was jumping on his 20inch, but not high enough that I think the POS 20inch forks actually helped much.
    Last edited by TwoTone; 09-12-2013 at 04:06 AM.
    13 Lenz Lunchbox punkass

  4. #4
    Havok
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    Caution;  Merge;  Workers Ahead!

    I did a ton of research on this to find my sons bike

    Kids 20inch MTB's

  5. #5
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    I've bought a lot of kids bikes. Treks, Gary Fishers, a Jamis. I've grown fond of the specialized Hot rocks. They seem to hold up well, and take to upgrades very nicely.
    Look for a newer one with a 1-1/8" headset so swapping stems and bars is easier for fitment. $65 for a a Hotrock 20 is a good deal.

  6. #6
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    Any thoughts on a Marin Hidden Canyon vs. Specialized Hotrock 24? My son has a Marin Bayview Trail, and he is very happy with it. The Hidden Canyon is a 20" tire, but supposedly quite similar to the Bayview. On the other hand, a Specialized Hotrock with a 24" tire might have a small enough frame for my daughter. That would seem to be a better choice if she can handle it since she could grow into it. On the other hand, I know a little bit about Marin and have been very happy with it (based on my son's experience).

    The hotrock is an older model without suspension. I am guessing it is 2003. The Marin is a 2011. Pricing is similar for both.
    Last edited by yossarian143; 09-15-2013 at 02:32 PM.

  7. #7
    Havok
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    I think the Hot rock might be steel if it's before 2005. But if you can get a 2011 for the same price, my choice would be for the 2011. A lot of advancements in that amount if time.

  8. #8
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    Definitely not a 2011. It has no suspension, which it would on the 24" 21 speed. But according to Bikepedia, it is a Chromoloy frame. It is hard to pass up a 2011 Marin, even though it is a 20". My daughter is 46" tall. It might last her a few years (I would rather not for other reasons of course).

  9. #9
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    I was able to find a 2011 Marin Hidden Canyon for $125. It looks like it is in great shape. That seems like a pretty solid deal for a nice 20" bike. Worst/best case scenario, my daughter somehow has a major growth spurt and I sell the bike in a year or two for something close to what I paid.

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