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  1. #1
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    Mountain Bike for 7 year old

    I want to introduce my 7 year old to the joys of mountain biking. He has been riding paved roads on his 16" since he was 4 and I think he is ready to hit some trails with me. Since Ibis doesn't make a 20" or 24" Mojo, I am forced to look elsewhere. Does anyone have any mountain bike recommendations for an approximately 4ft. tall boy? 24" or 20"? Specific brands? Any thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks

  2. #2
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    We have a whole forum for this. =) Lots of good threads in there.

    http://forums.mtbr.com/families-riding-kids/

  3. #3
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    Hey Radd, my little shredder went through 2 specialized mountain bikes before graduating (at age 11) to his current XS Salsa Ala Carte... the first one had 20" wheels, the second 24" and a suspension fork. They were both excellent bikes with lots of thoughtful component choices for the little guys. Avoid the temptation to get him something he'll "grow into"....get one that fits to aid his confidence and progression... they're really not that expensive, especially when you can sell them on Craigslist for half what you paid for them when your guy's done. Friends who got their kids cheap-ass heavy department store FS bikes now spend all their weekends driving to soccer tournaments..... My son and I ride from the house to sweet single track and cool swimming holes... there were other factors of course, but I believe that getting him a well designed, properly assembled (props to the Bicycle Sport Shop), bike that fit well and that he thought was "rad" helped get him hooked early. Oh yeah, and forget every adult rule you ever heard about proper seat height.... let him slam it down low so it's not so intimidating to get started.......... imho

  4. #4
    Stucco Bucket
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    Kona as well.

  5. #5
    KevinK
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    How about a Scott Spark Jr. 20" or 24" wheels. My Daughter received this bike for her 8th birthday. It's a 24", 21speeds, and Full Suspension!!!

    It's a great bike!!! Good luck,

    Kevin

  6. #6
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    Great advice. Thanks....

  7. #7
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    I highly recomend the Scott Spark RC 24". It has the best full suspension of any kids bike with the X-Fusion air shock & Spinner Grind 2 fork.The bike is light approx. 24.5 lbs.Replaced the cranks with shorter Middleburn 160mm,22/32 middleburn rings & BBG bash guard,Race face Ti BB this was a 400 gram savings over stock parts.My little guy can just rip on this thing whether its bike parks like Bootleg, Silver Star BC, or technical XC single track.

  8. #8
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    Thanks XC71..how tall is your little guy?

  9. #9
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    Are the Spark JR and RC still being sold in the US though? I thought the thread in the family forum mentioned they were discontinued here, but avail. in the EU/Aus, etc?

  10. #10
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    now you're talkin That Scott looks sweet. I think Specialized now has a kid's fsr full boinger too.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Radd37
    Thanks XC71..how tall is your little guy?
    My son is 50" tall.If you need to shorten things up, Thompson makes a zero offset 26.8 in the Elite model [stock uses offset post ]You can get really nice, light, cheap stems for kids 25.4 handlabars @ carboncycles.cc. Stock is 90mm, we are running Carboncycles 60mm.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by doismellbacon
    Hey Radd, my little shredder went through 2 specialized mountain bikes before graduating (at age 11) to his current XS Salsa Ala Carte... the first one had 20" wheels, the second 24" and a suspension fork. They were both excellent bikes with lots of thoughtful component choices for the little guys. Avoid the temptation to get him something he'll "grow into"....get one that fits to aid his confidence and progression... they're really not that expensive, especially when you can sell them on Craigslist for half what you paid for them when your guy's done. Friends who got their kids cheap-ass heavy department store FS bikes now spend all their weekends driving to soccer tournaments..... My son and I ride from the house to sweet single track and cool swimming holes... there were other factors of course, but I believe that getting him a well designed, properly assembled (props to the Bicycle Sport Shop), bike that fit well and that he thought was "rad" helped get him hooked early. Oh yeah, and forget every adult rule you ever heard about proper seat height.... let him slam it down low so it's not so intimidating to get started.......... imho
    Good advice. My 8 year old rides a 20" Specialized Hotrock. Sweet looking, simple and built solid. He'll probably graduate to 24" before long, but I agree that it's better to err on the smaller side to build confidence on a more maneuverable bike. And yes, selling on craigslist is ideal for progressing through the different bike sizes. Only complaint about the Hotrock is the derailleur spring is designed a little loose, so it drops chain a little too often. But perfect for 7-8 year old to get familiar with gears and dirt.

    IMO full sus is overkill for this age, unless he's a serious singletrack riding badass (which I have seen a few of). Kids thrash their bikes and I don't want another set of links and higher end components to maintain. Build the passion in him first and give him something to wish for later.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kalamath
    Are the Spark JR and RC still being sold in the US though? I thought the thread in the family forum mentioned they were discontinued here, but avail. in the EU/Aus, etc?
    They are hard to find, but I think sagecycles.com has stock on the Scott Spark RC 24.I've heard the 2011 Scott catalog shows the Spark RC 24, so hopefully Scott usa will bring more in.

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