Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    A couple of months ago, I posted a question on this forum about trying to find a 16" wheeled bike for my at the time 3 year old daughter, that had a free-wheel and hand brakes. I thought I researched everything, but someone on that post recommended me to look at the Spawn Cycles Banshee (2012 Spawn Cycles Banshee 16" Bike - Spawn Cycles - The World's Best Kids' Bikes!). It was everything that I wanted spec wise (aluminum frame, free-wheel, v-brakes and lightweight), and delivered it was less than $400.

    I had originally bought a Specialized Hotrock 16" for her a year before, and even though she was progressing fast with the bike, it was limiting her true potential. So I bought the only type of brakes that fit on it (U-brakes), and they were terrible even though I adjusted them as intended. So I had a bike that weighed almost 23 pounds, had crappy brakes, still had the crutch coaster brakes and had too big of gearing for her and an inefficient drivetrain. She weighs 37 pounds, so that is like my 200 pound self pedaling a 124 pound bike. And I now had spent around $300 for this.

    Now with the Banshee, it weighs around 16 pounds, an almost one third reduction in weight, and a lower gearing, she cranks up hills that she had to walk before. The bike has decent components on it, and I don't see anything that would be considered lightweight and after many crashes, it is proven to be durable. The only change that I would make is changing out the tires, as they seem to be more suited for pavement than dirt. The drivetrain is efficient (meaning that if I spin up the wheel and then let go of the crank, the rear Spesh wheel stops spinning in 5 wheel revs, where the Banshee spins for at least 10 times longer), and it is amazing the night and day difference between her climbing ability. It took her several rides to get past the involuntary response for her to pedal backwards when she is scared, but she is really coming to her own now with the v-brakes. The brakes are plenty strong, and I don't see any reason why kids should be ever using coaster brakes.

    But now with a good 50 miles and 20 rides on the Banshee, she went from crying when I said we weren't going to take her Specialized bike to our Moab trip, to now telling me that I can sell it now, because she doesn't like the Specialized bike anymore.

    I know a lot of people are doing a bunch of mods to make Hotrocks a lot nicer, and spending much more than this bike costs. I was going to go down that street, but I'm glad I found this. And another part I like is that this isn't done by some huge company like most kids bikes are, but a small company based out of Canada. Designed and built by a dad who got tired of his son riding crappy bikes, kind of like the rest of us.

    If anyone is interested, here is her at the Trailside Bike Park in Park City, UT, I wish I could have muted out me, so please turn some loud music up instead. She just turned 4 a couple of weeks ago, and I look forward to kicking my butt in a few years:

    Addz in the Trailside Bike Park - YouTube


    PM me if you still think Specialized is king, and you are interested in a white Specialized Hotrock 16" with front and rear hand brakes.
    Last edited by BullSCit; 07-11-2012 at 01:17 PM.

  2. #2
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    I'm having a hard enough time justifying $200 for a used Hardrock 20" for my son about to turn 6, no way I would have paid $350 for a 16" bike 2 years ago, you sir are a baller, props to you
    Hardrock 29er, Niner EMD9, Cannondale F29, Camber Expert, 650b Nickel all gone.
    2014 Giant Anthem 27.5 here.

  3. #3
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    I'm also lucky enough to have a 1.5 year old son, so now it comes down to $200 per kid for the bike. Everybody's situation is different, and if I can ride with my daughter all the way to the park, instead of having to get off my bike and push her up the hills, that is priceless to me. And to see how excited she is when she gets to the top of a hill that she never climbed before, that is priceless too. We probably ride 6 days a week, so price per ride is pretty cheap in the long run. And maybe I am a baller, as the after-market rear shock on my Niner WFO cost more than her complete bike.

  4. #4
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    The vid was cool. You sound like every other dad following their kid, no worries. A baller straps the strider bike to the backpack before running course... you sir are a baller. Careful, or the smaller one will be hucking that bike his sis is on.
    veelz

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    Thanks Veelz. My son was riding the pump track before this on his Strider and was tearing it up. But I don't think he is quite ready for the flow track, especially with the cheezy plastic small diameter wheels, because there is no way he could get up the front side of the tabletops. Having the GoPro on my helmet really makes the tabletops look small, but you can see how it is jerking the front end of my bike around, even with a 29" wheel.

    You should see us when we ride singletrack around our house. My son will be on the steerer tube mounted iBert seat, my daughter in a trailer bike, and then their two bikes strapped to my pack on the uphills, but then all is good when we get to the top and they can ride down. But nothing like adding 130 pounds of weight to make the local hills harder.

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    Just a little resistance training. Too cool!

    On the Banshee, we don't have one, but I sure wish they were around a few years ago when I dropped $300 on a Pitboss. Pitboss is a great bike expect the rear handed brake leaves something to be desired.


    I've been to the UK and the majority of the younger kids bikes their have hand brakes and not coaster brakes. We got to use a 16" big box store brand that the inlaws had picked up for about $30 used. It had plasticy hand brakes but they were easy enough for my 4 year old to use and the bike came in under 20#.

    Now my youngest is more than ready to move from a balance bike to a pedal bike. However he has low muscle tone and can't figure out the coaster brake on the hotrock. I am working on getting the pitboss ready for him. The brake it came with he didn't have the strength for, but I got an Avid 7 lever and new brake and now he has some control of the braking. His cycling and CONFIDENCE has taken off now that he can stop a bit. Next up brazed on bosses on the front fork for a V-brake.

    Really it shouldn't be so hard to get a decent kids bike (and it's not on the other side of the pond). Glad to see one company has stepped up.

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    Do you have any idea how much the Pitboss weighs? That was the bike that I was about ready to buy before I found the Banshee. But the deal killer was it having no front brake and no bosses for Vs. I remember when I installed Vs from cantis back 20 years ago, and the enormous difference in power, probably close to the Vs to hydro disks that I have now. Why it took engineers so long to develop Vs is unknown to me.

    The only argument that I have seen for the benefits of coaster brakes is that kids don't have enough hand strength to handle big downhills. My daughter is strong, but no freak of nature, and I am always asking her on big downhills if her hands hurt afterwards or if she was braking as hard as she could. And both answers are always no. So maybe that is true when you have crappy U-brakes or cantis, but with Vs, I'm pretty sure most average kids can do it. So someone please shed some light on why companies that know 10,000x more than I do about bikes (like Specialized), would put coasters on kids bikes. Is it cost savings? It definitely isn't efficiency or weight savings I would assume, and if coaster brakes are so great, why not have them on adult bikes.

    And my parting thought. Regarding some thinking these bikes are expensive. I paid $260 for my Specialized Hotrock 16" with tax (couldn't find anything used) and about $40 for the brakes including shipping. So for $300, I got what I described above. So with the Banshee, I paid $400, and lost 6 pounds of bike. Maybe everyone on this forum aren't the hard core bikers on the various other forums on MTBR, but I think most would pay $100 to lose 6 pounds on their bikes. I've seen some people pay $200 for titanium bolt replacement kits, and that may only take 100 grams off the total weight.

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    The Pitboss weighs between 15 and 15.5#. I changed out the seat from a hard plastic bmx seat to a padded bmx fmf.

    The whole kids don't have the strength for hand brakes argument is nonsense in my opinion. The only problem is not having a large selection of powerful brake levers for little hands. I do also have a Islabike Beinn 20 that the grandparents brought over from UK last year in a suitcase during their visit. When I tried out my youngest on the Islabike (which is too big for him so I held onto him) and said "try the brakes" he stopped almost instantly. We were both surprised as before whenever I asked him to stop the best he ever did on the Pitboss was a slight slow down. This is when I knew that I needed to work on redoing the brakes on the Pitboss. The avid 7 is much better but it's still not as good as the Islabike brakes. When I was biking with my eldest who is 7 on the Islabike last week he was going down some steep hills in complete control.

    I don't know why the American bike manufacturers can't figure out what the UK ones already have. I do occasionally see front and rear V-brakes on older American 16" bikes like the Haro. I am just guessing here but I wonder if it has anything to do with worries of liability and kids endoing on front hand brakes. When I used to be into babywearing there was a few UK manufacturers who wouldn't sell to North America because we were to litigious.

    Have you seen the schwinn micro mesa? Front and rear V-brakes and a coaster brake. I wonder how much it would weigh after changing out the rear wheel and if the brakes work well.

    I am glad I didn't spend too much on the hotrock. Got it for $40 of CL. I had an older aluminum one and once I changed out the seat it was in the #16 pound range. However the geometry was too upright and didn't suit my child. Glad to have passed that bike on.

    What gets me is the American big box store bikes that are cheap and heavy. An equivalent bike in the UK and similar to the one we used when we were over there Apollo Urchin 16. My child's riding was much better on that than the lightweight brand name coaster brake bike I had back home at the time. I would have brought that bike home too if I had space in my suitcase.
    Last edited by bikes&berries; 07-15-2012 at 11:35 AM. Reason: clairification and additional info

  9. #9
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    Well your review convinced me to get a Banshee for my 3.5 year old. I put some lower rise bars and fatter tires and off she went. So far so good!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-alauras-banshee.jpg  


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    I wish I could have gotten my daughter the pink bike too, but thought it would be easier to for her to rock the blue, than my younger son in two years with the pink. But I did order her some pink Jagwire brake cables off of Ebay, so it will be more girled out.

    Which tires are those? Kenda K50s? And I like your idea of the handle bar. Send a video link on here if you get a chance. My daughter is getting better everyday, but in 2-3 months riding season will be over, and then it will be time for skis.

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    I have another coming behind her so it was easy to pick pink. The tires are from Tarty bikes in the UK. Quick and cheap shipping. They are 16" trials tires. 2.4. They should work great in the soft stuff. We will find out tomorrow

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    Anybody got a picture of the green? It really sucks that you can't see the actual different pain colors on their website.

  13. #13
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    nice pinkbike! Tires look mega burly, what size are they?
    Climb it on your bike

  14. #14
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    They are 16 x 2.4. Tight fit but no rubbing.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-top-view-tire-banshee.jpg  

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-under-view-tire-banshee.jpg  


  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by devojrx7 View Post
    Anybody got a picture of the green? It really sucks that you can't see the actual different pain colors on their website.
    We liked the Banshee so much, we got a Tengu for my son too. Still trying to get him to understand that he can now brake with his hands, and not his feet. But with him having real rubber tires with air, sure makes for a safer ride, as those lightweight foam / plastic wheels from the Strider are [email protected]

    Anyway, I assume this would be the same green used for the other bikes, and the green is a tad bit darker in real life than the picture shows.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-tengu.jpg  


  16. #16
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    Thanks for the pic. I actually contacted Spawn and Max said that they are updating their site and will have a new site soon that will have all the pics. He sent me a link to a pic of the 14" bike in green here.

    Spawn Cycles Blog » The Green Gremlin

    He also found a slightly cheaper place to get the 2.4 tires Adam has on his girls bike. It came out to just under 60 euros shipped. The place Adam got them was out of stock.

    Municycle.com - Unicycle.com Germany*-*16 x 2.4 Inch (64-305) Monty Trials Tire

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    I am looking to better the gearing on the Banshee for my little girl. Currently I have replaced the 28t chainring with a 22t and when I went to change the freewheel to something bigger I learned a lot about BMX stuff that I didnt know. Namely that they have Metric thread freewheels up to 15t and then they move to larger English threads for 16t and up. Typically the Metric are on flip flop hubs but the hub on the Banshee only has the Metric. She is wanting to follow me on some easy grades but she needs more gear.

    So I found a cheap flip flop hub that I will use on the rear to relace the wheel. I want to bling it up a little while its apart with some pink spoke nipples, but the Spawn site does not list the spoke size. Anyone have an idea?

  18. #18
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    Send them an email, they got back to me within hours of mine. Make sure to post pics when you get it done. Link to hub you are using?

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    Quote Originally Posted by devojrx7 View Post
    He also found a slightly cheaper place to get the 2.4 tires Adam has on his girls bike. It came out to just under 60 euros shipped. [/url]
    700g per tire!!!, Spawn talks about the advantage of a lightweight bike and those tires add 800g of extra rotating weight (compared to Schwalbe Mow Joe's).
    That's not really rewarding Span's efforts or am I missing something?
    Climb it on your bike

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    Did I miss where Mow Joe's are made in 16 x 2.4? They are definitely not light but with the sand around here I have found no better alternative. Everything else just sinks.

    I was a little hesitant too since my 26 x 2.4 tires weigh the same.
    Last edited by adamm3; 07-30-2012 at 08:00 PM.

  22. #22
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    You can get the Mad Mike's in 16x2.125 @ 540g.
    MAD MIKE

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    Quote Originally Posted by devojrx7 View Post
    You can get the Mad Mike's in 16x2.125 @ 540g.
    MAD MIKE
    I'm not sure what the difference is between the Mad Mike's and the Kenda K50s, but they look like the exact same tire, and can be found for cheap on Amazon:

    Kenda Comp III Style Wire Bead Bicycle Tire, Blackwall, 16-Inch x 2.125-Inch: Amazon.com: Sports & Outdoors

    And they look like a nice compromise to riding on both dirt and street. And those 2.4s look huge, but after doing lots of snow rides last year, float is very good. But still can't understand why those 16x2.4s weigh half of my 26x4.9s. Seems like they should be way lighter.

    For other people in my position that bought a neutral color frame for the future younger brother / sister, I got some Jagwire brake housings in pink on Ebay for $11.45 shipped, that even comes with the actual stranded wire brake cables. There were lots of color options too. My daughter loves it, and will put the original black ones back on when my son is old enough to ride it. Now, I'll get some pink grips, and call it good. It is amazing how such a simple upgrade has her so excited about her bike.

  24. #24
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    Looks the same to me, and about $5 cheaper, damn. I wonder what they weigh? I couldn't find it during a short search of the intraweb.

  25. #25
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    2.125 vs 2.4Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-imageuploadedbytapatalk1343790078.146134.jpg

    Pretty big diff

  26. #26
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    I'm going to run the 2.4's for sure when they get here, he has been having trouble riding the rocky trails around here and I think those will help a lot. They aren't going to make a 16lb bike a 30lb bike, and I seriously doubt that he will be achieving speeds that will make the extra rotational mass a significant hinderance any time in the near future.
    Thanks for the pic

    I'm either going to do orange and green or a joke themed purple and green like this bike. He is really into batman now.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by devojrx7 View Post
    Looks the same to me, and about $5 cheaper, damn. I wonder what they weigh? I couldn't find it during a short search of the intraweb.
    One of the other websites that I was looking at said the K50s were 520g, but I can't seem to find that now. But the 20x2.125s are 640 grams, so 520g sounds about right.

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    I have a blue Banshee on its way to me right now. Thanks for the great write up here. Looking forward to doing a side by side comparison with my son's current 16" hotrock. I will post up my findings ;-) Also picked up some nubbier tires to go ripping around on the mountain bike trails. My son is so excited to get a bike with hand brakes like dad's.

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    I got all the new parts for my daughter's bike a couple days ago, and I changed out the Hotrock 16" tires for the Kenda K50s. The Kendas feel about the same weight, but their casing doesn't feel quite as thick, so not sure how that will be with pinch flats, because I am running the tires at a low PSI to give a little cushion when she hits the rocks. On her first ride, she rarely skid, and is way more confident in her turns on loose dirt / sand.

    I changed out the 28T chainring with a 22T chainring from Amazon that I got for $9. I had to take out a link of the chain, and had to move the wheel back further in the dropouts, which also made me have to move the rear v-brake pads back too. Pretty easy change, that took about 15 minutes including removing the crank, etc. Another good thing about the smaller gear is that it limits her speed, which for now is good, as she is getting to the point that she wants to race me.

    And I got some new pink grips. Here is the bike now (also with the pink brake housing and a softer seat more ergo Serfas seat we had on her trailer bike).

    Also, here is another small bike video of her riding at the local skate park. Doesn't look like much, but there is a 4 foot drop if she goes off the top. And don't worry, we did it 5 or so times with me in the catch position before filming this.

    Addz in the Skate Park - YouTube
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-park-city-20120809-00001.jpg  


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    Quote Originally Posted by BullSCit View Post
    I got all the new parts for my daughter's bike a couple days ago, and I changed out the Hotrock 16" tires for the Kenda K50s. The Kendas feel about the same weight, but their casing doesn't feel quite as thick, so not sure how that will be with pinch flats, because I am running the tires at a low PSI to give a little cushion when she hits the rocks. On her first ride, she rarely skid, and is way more confident in her turns on loose dirt / sand.

    I changed out the 28T chainring with a 22T chainring from Amazon that I got for $9. I had to take out a link of the chain, and had to move the wheel back further in the dropouts, which also made me have to move the rear v-brake pads back too. Pretty easy change, that took about 15 minutes including removing the crank, etc. Another good thing about the smaller gear is that it limits her speed, which for now is good, as she is getting to the point that she wants to race me.

    And I got some new pink grips. Here is the bike now (also with the pink brake housing and a softer seat more ergo Serfas seat we had on her trailer bike).

    Also, here is another small bike video of her riding at the local skate park. Doesn't look like much, but there is a 4 foot drop if she goes off the top. And don't worry, we did it 5 or so times with me in the catch position before filming this.

    Addz in the Skate Park - YouTube
    Great looking bike Seeing all these is making me more excited for my son's new banshee to arrive ;-)

  31. #31
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    My daughter is still on her Strider, but soon will need one of these... $350.00 is a bit more than I could afford though. If any of your kids grow out of theirs in the next year or so... Let me know. Would love to find one used for my little shredder.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BullSCit View Post
    A couple of months ago, I posted a question on this forum about trying to find a 16" wheeled bike for my at the time 3 year old daughter, that had a free-wheel and hand brakes. I thought I researched everything, but someone on that post recommended me to look at the Spawn Cycles Banshee (2012 Spawn Cycles Banshee 16" Bike - Spawn Cycles - The World's Best Kids' Bikes!). It was everything that I wanted spec wise (aluminum frame, free-wheel, v-brakes and lightweight), and delivered it was less than $400.

    I had originally bought a Specialized Hotrock 16" for her a year before, and even though she was progressing fast with the bike, it was limiting her true potential. So I bought the only type of brakes that fit on it (U-brakes), and they were terrible even though I adjusted them as intended. So I had a bike that weighed almost 23 pounds, had crappy brakes, still had the crutch coaster brakes and had too big of gearing for her and an inefficient drivetrain. She weighs 37 pounds, so that is like my 200 pound self pedaling a 124 pound bike. And I now had spent around $300 for this.

    Now with the Banshee, it weighs around 16 pounds, an almost one third reduction in weight, and a lower gearing, she cranks up hills that she had to walk before. The bike has decent components on it, and I don't see anything that would be considered lightweight and after many crashes, it is proven to be durable. The only change that I would make is changing out the tires, as they seem to be more suited for pavement than dirt. The drivetrain is efficient (meaning that if I spin up the wheel and then let go of the crank, the rear Spesh wheel stops spinning in 5 wheel revs, where the Banshee spins for at least 10 times longer), and it is amazing the night and day difference between her climbing ability. It took her several rides to get past the involuntary response for her to pedal backwards when she is scared, but she is really coming to her own now with the v-brakes. The brakes are plenty strong, and I don't see any reason why kids should be ever using coaster brakes.

    But now with a good 50 miles and 20 rides on the Banshee, she went from crying when I said we weren't going to take her Specialized bike to our Moab trip, to now telling me that I can sell it now, because she doesn't like the Specialized bike anymore.

    I know a lot of people are doing a bunch of mods to make Hotrocks a lot nicer, and spending much more than this bike costs. I was going to go down that street, but I'm glad I found this. And another part I like is that this isn't done by some huge company like most kids bikes are, but a small company based out of Canada. Designed and built by a dad who got tired of his son riding crappy bikes, kind of like the rest of us.

    If anyone is interested, here is her at the Trailside Bike Park in Park City, UT, I wish I could have muted out me, so please turn some loud music up instead. She just turned 4 a couple of weeks ago, and I look forward to kicking my butt in a few years:

    Addz in the Trailside Bike Park - YouTube


    PM me if you still think Specialized is king, and you are interested in a white Specialized Hotrock 16" with front and rear hand brakes.
    What kind of seat is that you have your lil boy in? looks cool.

  33. #33
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    It's the Ibert seat. It is pretty cool, and we have used it pretty heavily for more than 3 years now (starting with my daughter). We have ridden fairly technical trails, and have only had one wreck. Just got to remember that you are their roll cage, so no taking your hands off the bars if you fall. But it is one great way to get your kids out biking at an early age, and they love being able to talk to you and see you (and shift your gears when you aren't looking), compared to being behind you as most other systems are.

    It is a great system, but I would definitely modify it, because it could be much better.

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    Some one is excited I will make sure to post my comparison notes between the hotrock and this bike soon!
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    First impressions:

    Overall the Spawn Cycles is a very good looking and quality children’s bike. Little details like Decals are applied under the clearcoat instead of stickers, sealed bearings all around, and the fit and finish are very nice.

    1. Low weight – The Banshee came in right at 16lbs which is what is advertised on their site. This makes it one of the lighter 16” kids bikes out there. Surprisingly the Hotrock was only a couple more pounds weighing in at 17-18 in stock form. Not bad either considering lots of other 16” options easily tip the 20lb mark.
    2. “Real” V-Brakes front and rear – This is HUGE if your plans include riding single track. The coaster brake on the hotrock was just unsafe on the dirt hills. The V-brakes are powerful and easy to modulate even for kids with small hands. My son got the hang of the hand brakes in a day and is now working them like a champ. I will give it a bit longer before hitting the trails to make sure he has it under control ;-)
    3. Freewheel – These bikes are so low to the ground that they have issues with hitting pedals on corners. The freewheel will make it easier for him to properly position his pedals when going into corners. Another bennifit I noticed is that there was considerable drag on the Hotrock’s rear wheel, presumably from the coaster brake setup. The rear wheel of the Banshee just keeps spinning and spinning where the Hotrock stops in 3-4 turns. That has to be a good thing.
    4. Cranks – The cranks are a good inch longer on the Banshee. I have already noticed my son powering up some pretty decent hills around the house with his new found leverage. I will be curious to see how that helps him out on the trails. The Hotrocks crank arms are so darn short!

    A note on the cost – New, the Banshee costs about $130 more than a Hotrock 16. Not insignificant but for me it was justified since I was looking at doing modifications to the Hotrock that would have cost at least that much to bring it up to the level the Banshee comes stock. Getting sidepull brakes (not as good as V-brakes), a better crank, and a freewheel would have easily matched the price of the Banshee.

    I will post some notes after our first outing on the trail. If you have any questions let me know J The small family owned Spawn Cycles were an absolute pleasure to deal with!

    Here is a picture of his bike all setup for him!

    https://www.morcmtb.org/photopost/da...ium/Spawn2.JPG
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-spawn2.jpg  


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    For those of you who live in the US and bought the Spawn Banshee, did you get hit with any customs fees?

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by madsedan View Post
    I'm having a hard enough time justifying $200 for a used Hardrock 20" for my son about to turn 6, no way I would have paid $350 for a 16" bike 2 years ago, you sir are a baller, props to you
    Ice hockey ice time: $1800/yr. Equipment not included. Use this info to justify otherwise outrageous kids bike purchases! B
    Departing from East Hampton, CT

  38. #38
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    I had to pay customs fees....when I spoke with Spawn about it they say its a crap shoot...sometimes customer gets charged sometimes they dont...but they have no control over it

  39. #39
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    I did not have to pay any customs. How much is it if you get charged?

    Oh and the bike is great. The 2.4's really make a big difference on the MTB trails he can now just roll over roots and rocks. I keep them aired down pretty low and it makes a pretty good suspension. They look really cool too.

  40. #40
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    I got hit with about $60...bummer, but the bike is still worth it. She is wanting to ride trails everyday and even her 2 year old sister wants to come. We let her come along on her balance bike when we do shorter rides. In the process of teaching her (2 yo) to pedal now....little bit of a struggle as she can balance the bike just fine, but has never pedaled anything so does not quite understand what to do.

    The 3.5 year old has done rides in the 3-4 miles range all single track and I def believe the bike helps. We took some friends older kids out this past weekend on their department store bikes with coaster brakes. It was just the affirmation I needed. Coaster brakes are impossible off road especially since they usually want to put their feet down when they are in trouble...that means no brakes.

    Thanks again Spawn!

  41. #41
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    That sucks regarding the customs. I was lucky enough to not have to pay any customs.

    Our riding definitely slowed down later this summer, as my daughter hit a small rock, lost her balance, and got launched over her handlebars. Landed on her elbow, and hyper-extended it, breaking her humerus right at the socket. She displaced the humerus with the ulna / radius fairly significantly and had to actually have surgery. She was one of three kids in the kids hospital that had the same type of break, so fairly common with their soft bones. We thought regular elbow pads help, but they actually make it worse, giving the arm more of a chance to hyper-extend because the elbow is an inch or so off the ground.

    So needless to say, I just bought her a full face helmet, and body armor (that has a combo elbow/forearm pad). I hope this will help reduce the chances of something like this happening again. We have really good insurance, but it still cost us almost $1500 out of pocket for all of this. With the FF helmet and armor only being $150, it seems like a decent investment.

    But we have started to get out again, and are planning a couple trips to Moab before it gets too cold down there. The bad news is that we awoke to 6" of snow at our house, so our riding season may be ending fast.

  42. #42
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    Awesome thread... I have a 7 month old (my first) fast asleep in his room right now and after a bit in a Burly -esqe trailer this Spring I can't wait to get him on one of these balance bikes and on and on.. Great to see so many great parents out there bringing their kids into a great sport!..

  43. #43
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    I was lucky and had no customs fees but my bike box was destroyed. The USPS must have used an entire roll of priority mail tape to patch the box up. They blamed it on Canada, damn you Terrence and Phillip.
    The Good Times are Killing me

  44. #44
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    My daughter finally decided to graduate from her push bike to her Spawn Gremlin this weekend. Once she decided she could do it, the transition took 10 minutes. Ordering a Banshee soon for her, the gremlin will go to her brother.


    The Good Times are Killing me

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    Oh god dammit I wish I hadn't of seen this thread. My 4 year old son is outgrowing his Hotrock 12 and I was about to get him a Hotrock 16. Game over. Fuuuuuuudge the wife will not be happy lol

  46. #46
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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    Just an update to our Spawn. I added a 3 spd freewheel to give a better range of gearing and prep her for the next bike. I used an SRAM X7 der and SRAM twist shifter i had laying around. Works great
    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-imageuploadedbytapatalk1368902556.555913.jpgReview of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-imageuploadedbytapatalk1368902570.161484.jpg

  47. #47
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    Just ordered a Banshee for my son! So stoked. Like was said earlier, after modding a Hotrock 16 you're basically at the Banshee cost. The longer crank arms is clutch, it was painful watching my son pedal his Hotrock 12 up small hills.

    Are there any other tires to consider aside from Kenda K50's? I noticed some Schwalbes that might be nice but unsure if someone had already done the research.

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by adamm3 View Post
    Just an update to our Spawn. I added a 3 spd freewheel to give a better range of gearing and prep her for the next bike. I used an SRAM X7 der and SRAM twist shifter i had laying around. Works great
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Adamm,

    What a great idea to add some gears. And nice job in making it so pink. I know my daughter would love all those mods, but trying to keep it easy to change back for my son. I have a couple of questions if you have some time.

    Is that the original rear hub on your Banshee?

    Where did you get the 3 speed freewheel? Could you send a link?

    When we ride, depending on the terrain, I am either wishing she had a smaller or taller gear. The 3 speed could be perfect.

    Thanks for any info - BS

  49. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by XJaredX View Post
    Oh god dammit I wish I hadn't of seen this thread. My 4 year old son is outgrowing his Hotrock 12 and I was about to get him a Hotrock 16. Game over. Fuuuuuuudge the wife will not be happy lol
    I'm sure your son's growth will be incredible going from the Hotrock 12 to the Banshee. Every ride that my daughter and I do now, she is amazing me by cleaning some part she hasn't been able to do in the past. She still doesn't have the power to get up most bigger hills, but is really learning how to keep momentum for the smaller ones. And it is so much easier to have confidence in going faster when you know you can stop quickly (instead of skid out of control). She is riding downhills that boys twice her age walk their bikes on. The Banshee has been a big reason for her growth in biking, and I just wish I knew about Spawn when I first bought her the Hotrock 12 too.

    Regarding your question about tires. I really like the K50s for our trail conditions (loose and sometimes sandy). She could get by with a less aggressive tread, but she very rarely skids down loose downhills. And I'll trade a little slower for safer anyday.

    And if your wife is like mine, she'll see quickly (after he learns the virtues of hand operated brakes), how much safer they are going downhill. On simple downhills with the Hotrocks, my daughter would lock up her rear brake and it scared the [email protected] out of us.

    Best of luck and send some pics / vids when you get it running.

  50. #50
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    Thanks!

  51. #51
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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    BS

    You will need an English thread BMX hub. Almost the same as what comes stock , but stock one has metric thread and will only take 15 tooth max. I rebuilt the wheel with cheap English thread hub from ebay. Then you will need
    Problem Solvers Chain Tensioner with Derailleur Hanger
    http://amzn.com/B006GHF18C
    And
    Como Bicycle Scooter Sprocket Wheel 3 Speed Freewheel Repair Part
    http://amzn.com/B009PKMAZY
    Plus shifter and der.

    Its easy with the pink for me. I have a 2 year old coming right behind the 4 yo. She is riding a custom 12" hotrock with freewheel and rear vbrakes.

    I agree with everyones statement about the spawn thou. If i would have known i would have started with their balance bike bc it has brakes that the little ones can use and then moved to the bigger ones. As it stands this one will get many years of use by my girls. This bike has made her a great rider.

  52. #52
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    In case it helps anyone, I was having a hard time finding first Schwalbe Mad Mikes in the US in 16x2.125", but then I realized the Kenda K50 is nearly identical, so then I searched for those but was having a hard time finding them in all black (on Amazon they were either white, or gumwall) so then I found them at Niagara Cycle. I posted this mainly because they seem to have a ton of 16" tires to choose from:

    Tires & Tubes - Tires - 16" - Niagara Cycle

    I went with the knobbier K50's to give him traction on dirt and gravel, but for a moment I did ponder buying some slicks for street riding

  53. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by adamm3 View Post
    BS

    You will need an English thread BMX hub. Almost the same as what comes stock , but stock one has metric thread and will only take 15 tooth max. I rebuilt the wheel with cheap English thread hub from ebay. Then you will need
    Problem Solvers Chain Tensioner with Derailleur Hanger
    Amazon.com: Problem Solvers Chain Tensioner with Derailleur Hanger: Sports & Outdoors
    And
    Como Bicycle Scooter Sprocket Wheel 3 Speed Freewheel Repair Part
    Amazon.com: Como Bicycle Scooter Sprocket Wheel 3 Speed Freewheel Repair Part: Sports & Outdoors
    Plus shifter and der.

    Its easy with the pink for me. I have a 2 year old coming right behind the 4 yo. She is riding a custom 12" hotrock with freewheel and rear vbrakes.

    I agree with everyones statement about the spawn thou. If i would have known i would have started with their balance bike bc it has brakes that the little ones can use and then moved to the bigger ones. As it stands this one will get many years of use by my girls. This bike has made her a great rider.

    Adamm,

    Thanks for the info. The PS Derailleur hanger and 3 spd freewheel seem to make sense. Is this what I am looking for in regards to a hub:

    GT Mohawk BMX 28 Hole Hub Rear SS FW | eBay

    Because if I wanted to keep the same rims, I would want a 28h hub? Were you able to reuse the spokes / nipples on yours?

    Are there any other freewheels that would work? I would love to get a little more spread than the +/- 15% of the Como one.

    Thanks again for any info - BS

  54. #54
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    I need to tag this one... my 3.5yo has a 12" pedal bike from grandma which is a little too big. Just got her on a Burley MyKick balance bike, but I think the Banshee will be just right when she's ready for a new bike. She's small, so maybe xmas or next year... shall see.

  55. #55
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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    ****************12UHA3D

    These are the hubs i used. Hard to tell on the one u linked if it has correct thread. Spokes and nipples transferred over.

    Como Sprocket Wheel Freewheel 3 Speed for Scooter Bicycle
    http://amzn.com/B0053WWHK6

    Como Bicycle Scooter Sprocket Wheel 3 Speed Freewheel Repair Part
    http://amzn.com/B009PKMAZY

    2 versions i found

  56. #56
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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    FMF Powermoto flip flop hub. Link didnt work. I think any flip flop hub will work

  57. #57
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    Adamm, thanks again, and my daughter will soon has some gears. One last question, is that the KMC Z410 chain that you are using? Basically trying to find out if I want a singlespeed chain or a multi speed chain. Yours looks like the pink KMC, but I wanted to make sure.

    Thanks again - BS

  58. #58
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    Just a pink single speed chain..not sure even which one. It works surprisingly well.

  59. #59
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    Wow- great thread! After looking at Hotrocks and Pitboss, I drank the Spawn kool-aide and couldn't be happier. My 5 year old son is a very small guy, just makes it on the seat of his new Banshee. The bike is awesome- light and well made with top shelf components, a huge improvement over the Trek Jett he was riding. I'm eager to try Adamm3's recipe for adding a freewheel and derailleur. Between Ebay and Amazon I think I have the critical pieces covered.

    I do have a question about Grip Shifters and Handle Bar Diameter. So far I've kept the stock Spawn handlebars. I notice a lot of custom bars in this thread. Do Grip Shifters come with shims to fit different handle bar diameters? how does that work? Do I need to worry about this?

    Re: Customs/Duty fees, I live in the states and did not end up having to pay anything extra.

    It is great to have this information resource, thanks to everyone for sharing their experiences.

  60. #60
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    You will need a 25.4mm bar to work with the shifters. That means you will also need a new stem if I remember right. I think the Spawn stuff is 22.2mm (BMX). Nice thing is that the steertube is 1-1/8", so just about any mountain bike stem will work. I would stick in the 50mm-60mm length.

    Stem 25.4 x 60 x 1-1/8 would be ideal

  61. #61
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    My (son's) Banshee came yesterday. I live in PA, ordered it the 20th, so 8 days from western Canada to eastern U.S. is not bad at all. I didn't have to pay customs fees- I should point out that the times I have had to pay customs in the past on Canadian-shipped items were from UPS; Spawn shipped via Canada Post and then USPS.

    Very nice bike. Taking it to the LBS to handle the brakes, and my son is so stoked to ride it! We won't even mess with the 1.8" or whatever street tires on it, I already put the Kenda K50 knobbies on.

  62. #62
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    That is exactly what Spawn told me when i contacted them after i got hit for customs fees. UPS is how mine shipped. I think at the time they were going to stop using them.

  63. #63
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    Yeah, UPS calls it their "customs brokerage fee", which I read online can be circumvented if you call them ahead of time and complain and say something like "I have already cleared the item for import myself" or something.

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    thanks adamm3, 25.4mm is the diameter I couldn't remember. I'm going to rummage through my boxes of old parts and see what bar/stem combos I can find. Appreciate the help.

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    Quote Originally Posted by adamm3 View Post
    You will need a 25.4mm bar to work with the shifters. That means you will also need a new stem if I remember right. I think the Spawn stuff is 22.2mm (BMX). Nice thing is that the steertube is 1-1/8", so just about any mountain bike stem will work. I would stick in the 50mm-60mm length.

    Stem 25.4 x 60 x 1-1/8 would be ideal
    Speaking of bar and shifter.... is than an indexed or friction shifter you installed, adamm3? If indexed, how did you reconcile the multi-speed indexed shifter with just the 3 gears?

  66. #66
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    adamm3, what SRAM grip shifter did you use? Did you use one for the rear derailleur and it just only works 3 gears? Or can the left/front shifter work for the rear on this type of setup?

  67. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by XJaredX View Post
    adamm3, what SRAM grip shifter did you use? Did you use one for the rear derailleur and it just only works 3 gears? Or can the left/front shifter work for the rear on this type of setup?
    You getting ready to add gears to your Banshee, Jared? That new 20" geared Spawn bike might fit the bill when it's out... but, then, no fun customizing the one you have.

    I'm likely to be ordering a Banshee for my 4yo to graduate into soon. She's finally about 1.5" up on the seatpost of her Gremlin, and her younger sister is probably going to be ready for it by next year.

  68. #68
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    Yep! He's still 4 but at the point where he can justify a 3 speed with our riding. Plus he is constantly asking about how the gearing on my bike works.

    Trying to see if a Shimano Nexus 3 speed shifter can work... Other than that I dunno

  69. #69
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    I thought I would chime in as I bought my son a banshee as well. I've decided to go with the 2.4 inch innovo tires as the sand and gravel here is too much for smaller tires, as gears, I will wait a bit on those. I did drop the tooth count on the front sprocket to 22' instead of 28 to help my soon get some more uphill power.

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg
    Forgot to take a before picture, but here is final result

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg
    Original tire weight

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg
    New tire weight

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg
    Side by side comparison

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg
    28 tooth sprocket weight

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg
    22 tooth sprocket weight

    I also put an xtr chain on the bike because all I had was a nine speed quick link.

    I bought the tires from Unicycle.com - Please Choose Your Country they raped me on shipping, and had nothing else I wanted... Seriously 22 bucks for ground...

    Also max at spawn cycles was awesome to deal with he went out of his way to get my so a green banshee, when all he had in stock was blue

    and finally a video from my son's first track day on the bike in stock form, hope the new tires don't screw up his form.

  70. #70
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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-alaura.jpgBTW that is my 4 year old Alaura chasing Sean on her Banshee. We have done some changes since moving back to Tahoe from Texas. The 3 speed came off as the gearing does not help much in the mountains. We went back with the 24-24 gearing to allow her to climb some of the easier hills. The 3 speed tallest gear was 20 tooth. We also put on the 20" spinner air fork. It has taken a bit to break in but is working better. Will need to build a disc hub for the front as the v brake mounts are meant for 20" wheel.

  71. #71
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    Adamm3 a few posts up I asked about what shifter you used for 3 speed, any input is welcome!

  72. #72
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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    I used a 9 spd SRAM XO

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    Spawn has just announced that they have a new Banshee coming out in Mid-November. Lower seat and 1 pound less in weight!

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by evandy View Post
    Spawn has just announced that they have a new Banshee coming out in Mid-November. Lower seat and 1 pound less in weight!
    I am very jealous of it coming with a flip flop hub... but my son enjoys riding his too much to not of had it for the last of the warm weather...

  75. #75
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    Lower seat and a pound less is awesome. My daughter quickly transitioned to her 20" wheeled heavily modified Specialized a week or two after I did the three speed mod to our Banshee, but I don't think it is worth it. It added a decent amount of weight, and the range in gears obtained wasn't enough to justify this. It did help my daughter to understand the basics of shifting, but my recommendation is to keep the Banshee as it is and wait until they get big enough to ride a 20" bike. It sucks, as my 2 year old son is killing it on his Gremlin, and his big problem is he doesn't have a gear low enough for hills, and enough big gear for downhills. I guess another reason why I never have understood singlespeeders.

    I know most kids don't need a conventional 9/10 speed drivetrain at 2-4 years old, but it sure would be nice. Any idea how to fit a conventional 9/10 speed hub into this?

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    Just put in an order for a Bright Blue Banshee (The B bike, apparently). Should arrive just in time for Christmas if they hit their expected shipping date. My oldest is adament that her next bike be a "Skull and Pedal" bike too. She absolutely LOVES her Gremlin.

    Can't wait to see what people think of the new Savage!

  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by BullSCit View Post
    I know most kids don't need a conventional 9/10 speed drivetrain at 2-4 years old, but it sure would be nice. Any idea how to fit a conventional 9/10 speed hub into this?
    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-20130920_231746.jpg

    quite a bit of dish required.

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    Well I just bought a Spawn Banshee for my DD. I hope it all works out can admit a little bit scared. I got it for $180 Sight unseen.
    I know I know, really bad Idea.
    But it is done, I had a it picked up out of town. It was seen by someone else, but at 180, they did not have to be terribly picky.

    sounds like I am replacing, either and or both tires, at least 1 set of break pads. I do not even have the thing in the house yet.

    I am not sure if I am wanting to replace the tires with MTB tires right away, or leave her with the slicks for on road (as I am sure she is a full year/2 years away from the trails)

    any suggestions for tires? the commuter/hybrid style? or mtb style?
    anyone know what the original brand is on the breaks/pads?

    Everyone cross their fingers for me. I could not justify a $400-450 ($380 bike for my 4 year old.) and they are quite difficult to find used.
    180 was a LOT easier to justify. Hope it does not cost me more in the long run.

  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by northernblades View Post
    Well I just bought a Spawn Banshee for my DD. I hope it all works out can admit a little bit scared. I got it for $180 Sight unseen.
    I know I know, really bad Idea.
    Good luck! $180 is a fantastic price on the bike if it's still in decent shape. If all you have to replace is tires and brake pads, you should be OK.

    My daughter (on a Gremlin still) isn't ready for trails yet. She doesn't have the leg strength or gear inches to be able to handle that yet... As long as the tires aren't worn and dead, I'd recommend living with the ones you've got for a while and see how things go before replacing.

    $480 (bike + US shipping) may seem like a lot... but my DD just had a 12" rental bike on vacation that was nearly the same weight as my rental Moonlander.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BullSCit View Post
    I know most kids don't need a conventional 9/10 speed drivetrain at 2-4 years old, but it sure would be nice. Any idea how to fit a conventional 9/10 speed hub into this?
    What is the frame dropout spacing? You should be able to find an old 7-speed road bike cassette hub in 126mm width. The 7-speed cassett body is 5mm narrower than 8/9/10s, but you can fit 8 of 9 cogs from a 9-speed cogset onto a 7-speed body.

    If you want to stick with freewheels, an old 5-speed suntour "perfect" freewheel can bely rebuilt as a 3-speed (total width around 25mm), might also possibly work as a 4-speed. Suntour cogs would offer much lower gearing choices than the 20t 3-speed scooter FW.

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    Well the bike Came in yesterday. it is now nearly 4 hours into decal removal, sticker gunk removal, cleaning, and greasing.
    And the bike is freaking AWESOME.

    The damage to the pedals was just a crack on the outside loop furthest from the bike (not important and non structural). The break pads were al present and accounted for. and in short no damage to the bike that my kids would not have done in the first week of use.

    Even the rear tire, I figure I will let her road ride for 2-4 weeks, before I buy new tires, "in case" she hits any gravel or dirt. right now they are BALD. but not damaged.

    Now the sad reality......
    She will not be big enough to rid it until at least next summer. pictures to follow
    I am so excided.... and she is excited that it is blue.

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    Sounds like a fantastic bargain

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    I Hope this is acceptable practice here.
    http://sdrv.ms/HggJcP
    is my folder of the bike pictures.
    as well as one picture of my current rig.
    the trail-a-bike is often replaced with a chariot, and the older daughter rides up front instead.

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    Ace

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    Hi, just wanted to post up thanks for this great thread.

    My 2.5yr old boy rides his balance bike at the BMX track, BUT I am ready to get him on a Gremlin.

    Does anybody that reads this thread have a Gremlin for sale in the US?

    Since Spawn is no longer shipping the Gremlin here due to a trademark dispute, I would rather buy used, but am also considering looking for someone in the Calgary area that would be willing to ship me a new one ....PM me with replies, thanks!

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    Good idea to get a Gremlin. I got one for my just turned 3 year old early this year, and I am so glad that I did. He progressed so quickly on it, and pretty much rides a lot of singletrack on his own (just got back from Moab where he rode Agate and Jasper trails in North Klondike and Rusty Spur and the downhill of Lazy at the Brand trails). He is tall, and will next summer be on his sister's Banshee, and I'd sell you mine, but I am going to pass it down to my brother who will use it the summer of 2015. But definitely don't miss out on your son getting the chance to progress, as it is truly priceless. The best of luck in your search.

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    Thanks for the quick reply!

    No worries, I know how it is passing kid's stuff around...He's got a good Kazaam balance bike (real tires/tubes and bearings all around unlike strider) that's already spoken for by my brother in law!

    I am waiting to hear back from an old friend in Calgary who may be willing to go pick up one and ship it down here to me....Just depends on his timing tho, he works out of town a ton in the oil industry...

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    So now is time to post, Anyone selling or plan on selling a used Savage in the next.... 3 years?

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    Haha. I got 2nd dibs. Has to be the 2.0!

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    Quote Originally Posted by onespeedpaul View Post
    I am waiting to hear back from an old friend in Calgary who may be willing to go pick up one and ship it down here to me....Just depends on his timing tho, he works out of town a ton in the oil industry...
    The Gremlin is a fantastic bike. I'm about to pass one down to my younger daughter... That said, Spawn is releasing the Banshee 2.0 this year, and I think they said that it has a "lower standover" than the original. The difference between the Gremlin and the Banshee was only 1.5" to start off with... if your young one is big enough, you MIGHT be able to go straight to the banshee.

    It's a shame that they have that trademark dispute. It'll be nice to hear when they get it resolved (by renaming the bike or whatever).... In the mean time, my Banshee 2.0 is supposed to be shipping in time for Christmas; I'll measure it for posterity when it arrives.

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    This thread is a fantastic resource---thank you!

    Does anyone here have first-hand experience comparing a Banshee to an Islabike Cnoc 16? My daughter rides an Islabike Beinn 20 small, and it is fantastic (we bought it from the Portland, OR Islabike store). Moving to freewheel + light bike + hand brakes revolutionized her riding. Now I want the same transformation for my son, who is currently riding an unmodified Hotrock 16.

    Unfortunately, the U.S. Islabike Cnoc 16 comes with a coaster brake, so if I go that route, I'll either self-import the freewheel version from the UK or buy the U.S. version, rebuild the rear wheel, and add a V-brake using the seat stay clamp-on brake bosses posted in one of the Hotrock 16 mod threads (http://forums.mtbr.com/families-ridi...l#post10803297). The cost of Banshee vs cnoc16-with-freewheel-in-U.S. ends up about the same (if only the U.S. Cnoc16 came with freewheel, it would be quite a bit cheaper than the Banshee).
    - U.S. version: Islabikes Cnoc 16 - lightweight first bike for kids age 4+
    - U.K. version: Islabikes Cnoc 16 - lightweight first bike for kids age 4+

    The geometry is quite different between the bikes:
    - Horizontal top tube: Cnoc16 (400mm). Banshee (380mm)
    - Seat tube length: Cnoc16 (228mm). Banshee (190mm)
    - Head tube angle: Cnoc16 (71 degrees). Banshee (72 degrees)

    The Cnoc is reportedly roughly 2 lbs lighter than the Banshee at 13.2 lbs.

    Anyone have first-hand experience with both bikes?

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    It is £30 cheaper in the US!

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    Quote Originally Posted by ProjectMayhem View Post
    It is £30 cheaper in the US!
    Yes, but the U.S. model comes with a coaster brake and no rear v-brake bosses (not shown in the picture, but verified with Islabike U.S.). UK wins.

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    That does suck. Though a coaster brake has been brilliant for my 2 year old, I don't think it has a place on a 16 inch bike.

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    Anyone hear anything about when the new Banshees will start shipping? Getting close to the end of the month!

  96. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by fireswamp View Post

    Unfortunately, the U.S. Islabike Cnoc 16 comes with a coaster brake, so if I go that route, I'll either self-import the freewheel version from the UK or buy the U.S. version, rebuild the rear wheel, and add a V-brake using the seat stay clamp-on brake bosses posted in one of the Hotrock 16 mod threads

    The geometry is quite different between the bikes:
    - Horizontal top tube: Cnoc16 (400mm). Banshee (380mm)
    - Seat tube length: Cnoc16 (228mm). Banshee (190mm)
    - Head tube angle: Cnoc16 (71 degrees). Banshee (72 degrees)
    Fireswamp: Did you get the geometry directly from Islabikes? I've been looking around on both the US and UK sites and can't find it listed, even on the owner manual PDFs.

    For what it is worth, the only 16" bike I have found "commonly" available in the US with rear V brake mounts is the Norco Scorpion.

    Scorpion « 16 Inch « Youth « Bikes « Norco Bicycles

    Unfortunately it comes with what I assume is a very low quality and very heavy suspension fork. I'm not sure what's the less of two evils, a coaster brake with heavy drag or a heavy, ineffective suspension fork.

    I have to say with the benefit of hindsight the Spawn Banshee would have been worth every penny over the Hotrock 16 I bought. But I have two boys a year apart so we would have gotten a few good years out of it.

  97. #97
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    Quote Originally Posted by CJH View Post
    Fireswamp: Did you get the geometry directly from Islabikes? I've been looking around on both the US and UK sites and can't find it listed, even on the owner manual PDFs.
    Yes, the geometry came from Islabike U.S. in Portland, OR. They are very helpful, and wish they could offer their freewheel + rear-V-brake Cnoc 14s and 16s in the U.S. They cannot due to our antiquated bicycle safety laws.

    FWIW, I gave up on the idea of modding a U.S. Cnoc 16 to add the freewheel + V-brake and ordered a Banshee.

  98. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by fireswamp View Post
    Yes, the geometry came from Islabike U.S. in Portland, OR. They are very helpful, and wish they could offer their freewheel + rear-V-brake Cnoc 14s and 16s in the U.S. They cannot due to our antiquated bicycle safety laws.

    FWIW, I gave up on the idea of modding a U.S. Cnoc 16 to add the freewheel + V-brake and ordered a Banshee.
    My wife called him yesterday. Unfortunately I was in the shower so I couldn't tell her to get the horizontal TT measurements of the two 20" models. I'll email him shortly.

    We've already ordered a Cannondale Street 20 for my five and a half year old. I want to put some money into his Hotrock 16 (freehub, V brake adaptors, paint job) and give it to his four and a half year old brother. My wife is now questioning if it's worth the money given how quickly our older son outgrew the Hotrock.

    She feels with what Hotrock 16s are selling for on Ebay we could just go ahead and sell it and get the bike we really want. Of course the only bike that meets our criteria is the Banshee but it has an even shorter TT than the Hotrock and I'm convinced my four year old will be cramped on it before the end of next summer.

    Is Spawn able to export Banshee's into the states without a coaster brake? Looking at the Norco Scorpion image closely online and it appears that it comes with both a coaster brake and a V brake. I just can't see spending more money and having a high friction coaster brake when I already have one here.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CJH View Post
    ...so I couldn't tell her to get the horizontal TT measurements of the two 20" models. I'll email him shortly.
    The Beinn 20" small has a 440mm horizontal top tube. I don't know about the 20" large version.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CJH View Post

    Is Spawn able to export Banshee's into the states without a coaster brake? Looking at the Norco Scorpion image closely online and it appears that it comes with both a coaster brake and a V brake. I just can't see spending more money and having a high friction coaster brake when I already have one here.
    I bought my son a banshee in September before they announced the refreshed model, it did not have a coaster brake, I would not have bought it if it did

  101. #101
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    They should add in the wholesale cost of a coaster hub wheel, plus the extra shipping, and then just ship the U.S. bikes with both wheels in the box. I can't imagine it'd be that much different in cost, it's a kid's wheel.

  102. #102
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    Quote Originally Posted by CJH View Post
    Is Spawn able to export Banshee's into the states without a coaster brake? Looking at the Norco Scorpion image closely online and it appears that it comes with both a coaster brake and a V brake. I just can't see spending more money and having a high friction coaster brake when I already have one here.
    Spawn states on their site that the consumer is solely responsible for all input duty and legal requirements. The only issue I've heard of them having is with the Gremlin, and that's a trademark issue with Schwinn (who also sells a bike called a gremlin).

  103. #103
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    Derp! I was confusing bikes. I thought since I bought our Banshee they went to a coaster brake for the US, but that was not the case

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    Quote Originally Posted by tkavan01 View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

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    quite a bit of dish required.
    Tkanvan01,

    Did you ever try to do this? I am seriously thinking about trying to do it now, and even though it will be a helluva amount of dish, my 35# son should be alright, and I'll have to limit him to only 5' high jumps to flat landings.

    Did you have to spread the stays out to get the hub in?

    From your picture it looks like there could be some interference with the V-brake bosses on the non driveside spokes, does it look like that to you?

    What kind of hub is that? I just did a quick search for a bolt on rear hub, and didn't find much.

    Thanks for any info - BS

  105. #105
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    Quote Originally Posted by BullSCit View Post
    Tkanvan01,

    Did you ever try to do this? I am seriously thinking about trying to do it now, and even though it will be a helluva amount of dish, my 35# son should be alright, and I'll have to limit him to only 5' high jumps to flat landings.

    Did you have to spread the stays out to get the hub in?

    From your picture it looks like there could be some interference with the V-brake bosses on the non driveside spokes, does it look like that to you?

    What kind of hub is that? I just did a quick search for a bolt on rear hub, and didn't find much.

    Thanks for any info - BS
    I tore apart an XT mtn bike hub, removing the lock nuts to get it to fit, I did not go any further bc it seemed stupid to continue, as soon as you add the rear cassette the locking cap part interfered with the frame. I did debate cutting the rear hub and taking a small section out of the middle and rewelding it, but I don't have access to an aluminum welder so i skipped that idea as well, maybe I should rethink it though.

  106. #106
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    I got a Gremlin finally!! Just had it shipped to a buddy in Calgary who then shipped it on down to me....

    It's great, my son who will be 3 in about 2 more months spent about ten minutes walk-riding it last night like he does on his balance bike, then about 20 minutes this afternoon doing about the same before he pedaled away from me under his own power...so cool!!!

    He's always been in the 50th percentile for his height and weight, so one thing I did to modify his a little was to swap out the seat and seatpost for a smaller/lower seat from his big sister's Islabike, and a plain seatpost with the separate old school seat rail clamp that can be flipped upside down to get the seat as low as it would go so he can tippy toe while seated...next up some 2.125 tires for his birthday in a couple months!

  107. #107
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    Quote Originally Posted by evandy View Post
    Anyone hear anything about when the new Banshees will start shipping? Getting close to the end of the month!
    Well, mine hasn't shipped yet ;( Max at Spawn told me a couple weeks back that it all depends on when the parts arrive through customs... here's hoping that all gets settled soon!

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    Just got notification that the new Banshee has been "Completed." No tracking number, so presumably it will ship out in the next couple of days. I'll get you some photos when it shows up (next week, I assume)...

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    Thanks for starting this post BullSCit, it was a major contributor to us buying this bike.

    Speaking of which, we ordered the banshee in Oct, it showed up today. YAY! Now I have to wait until kiddos birthday in January to give it to him.

    Is it January yet?


    Spencer

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    And then wait till may for the snow to melt.

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    Quote Originally Posted by northernblades View Post
    And then wait till may for the snow to melt.
    That's what gloves are for!

    Apparently, my banshee shipped 7 day instead of 2 day... Should show up Thurs.

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    Banshee finally showed up today, after 9 days with no scans from USPS. Box was damaged, and the powercoat on the cranks was scratched, but fine otherwise. Went together smooth as silk, just like the Gremlin, and the new lower seat is JUST low enough for my 4yo. By spring I'll probably be able to bump it up a bit. Hopefully it'll warm up enough that she can get out to give it a test ride soon.

    Now to hope the 2yo grows enough for the Gremlin by March.

  113. #113
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    What color is that? I doesn't appear on the Spawn website currently.
    Quote Originally Posted by adamm3 View Post
    Just an update to our Spawn. I added a 3 spd freewheel to give a better range of gearing and prep her for the next bike. I used an SRAM X7 der and SRAM twist shifter i had laying around. Works great
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    Quote Originally Posted by fire_strom View Post
    What color is that? I doesn't appear on the Spawn website currently.
    Its was the pink color offered on the V1 Banshee. I just looked at the site and I guess they are not offering it for the V2

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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    Darn. Pink would be the easy choice for my girl. It looks great too.
    G
    Last edited by fire_strom; 01-06-2014 at 09:22 AM.

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    Pulled the trigger today on a blue one!!! I am way more excited than she is but I expect that will equalize once it's here and she's rocking it. It might be a tiny bit big at first. She rode a HR16 in the store the other day and with the seat slammed could just touch the ground with the tips of her shoes.

    Thanks everyone for chiming in about these. Very inspirational and influential.

    I wonder if I can lace a IGH hub into the rim...

    -G

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    Congrats, fire_storm. I hope that you and your daughter enjoy it!

    My 4yo had a rude awakening last week. She insisted on going out to ride on the banshee despite ice and snow. When the tire slipped out from under her due to black ice she had no idea what just happened. Poor her.

    Oh, well. She's still looking forward to getting back on it in better weather.

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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    Bummer. Hope she isn't too shaken. It's great isn't it how kids don't know that bad weather and dicey conditions are bad until we convey it. Every morning that I'm taking her to "school" I ask if she wants to ride her bike or take the truck, she choices to ride her bike. Pouring rain, dumping snow, sub freezing temps, whatever, the weather doesn't seem to be a factor. That's the kind of exuberance and innocence we parents need to re-learn and not un-teach. Fine line between the safety and living. I lean towards living. But always with a helmet.
    :-)
    -G


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by fire_strom View Post
    She rode a HR16 in the store the other day and with the seat slammed could just touch the ground with the tips of her shoes.

    -G
    I ended up swapping the seat and seatpost to get the top of the seat about another 1" lower. The seat that Spawn uses has pretty profile from the rails to the top of the seat, so be looking for another seat with lower-profile (I used the islabikes seat off his sister's bike which is both small overall as well as lower profile)....and the seat post is a regular MTB single bolt offset post which is fine BUT if you go with a seatpost with the old style clamp that is separate from the post (like found on most all dept store bikes) you can flip the clamp so the thru-bolt that holds it together is above the rails and drop the height lower. each mod gains about a half-inch independent of each other....hope this helps!

  120. #120
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    It will, thanks. I remember reading your post on this a while back. I'd forgotten it though. I think I might have the parts on a big box store bike that would work.
    Thanks again-
    G

  121. #121
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    also, a mini bmx seat and shim gets it close to an inch lower.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

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    Has anyone else noticed that Schwalbe has a 16" Big Apple Tire?? I'm thinking that it might be a nice upgrade for our blue Banshee if/when we need some new tires. On the other hand, the tires that come with it are fairly slick. I wonder how much difference it would make...

  123. #123
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    I would say the extra 1/2" will make it a lot softer on the bumps. I run 2.35 big apples on my street bike, and I love the Cush. They roll plenty fast and are semi thorn resistant.

    I just wish black jacks would restock.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

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    What size pedals are these? 9/16" or 1/2"?
    Thanks!
    -G

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    Oh and, enter the FURI!!!
    They changed the name of the Gremlin to be able to import into Schwinnland USA.
    -G

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    They finally got the rename complete? Glad to hear that! My oldest started off on a Gremlin and loved it. She's on a Banshee now and the Gremlin is passed down... but it's a great bike. Glad they can finally import it into the US again.

  127. #127
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    9/16". Only cheap one piece cranks use 1/2" these days.

    And the black jacks shipped today!!!!!
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

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    Quote Originally Posted by spencerb View Post
    Thanks for starting this post BullSCit, it was a major contributor to us buying this bike.

    Speaking of which, we ordered the banshee in Oct, it showed up today. YAY! Now I have to wait until kiddos birthday in January to give it to him.

    Is it January yet?


    Spencer
    It's January! Son has ridden this bike a couple times. Took him less than 10 min to pedal, steer and stop coming from his runbike. Definitely going to have to put a smaller chainring on the front as he's having a hard time going up hill. For those that went to 22t, was it too low? or did it work out?

    Also, the one that we got had the flipflop hub. If I wanted to to up in teeth in the rear, would I just toss another gear on the opposite side?
    Spencer

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    I'm running a 24T up front and a 3-speed 16-22t in the rear. No derailleur or shifter yet, but I manually throw it on the 22T for trail riding so he can climb hills and on the 16t for pavement cruising. This setup works with the stock chain.

    24/22 gives him a low enough gear to climb most of the hills on our local trails.

    To answer the other part of your question, I removed the stock freewheel after putting on the 3-speed on the other side. But you could also run the stock 14t on one side, a larger freewheel on the other, and flip the wheel as needed.

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    I started with the 22T up front, and it really helped my daughter on the hills around our house, but she spins out pretty fast on downhills and roads (which really isn't a bad thing, as speed hurts). It all depends on how big your hills are, and how hard he/she will try before giving up.

    What I really would love is if someone would make me a smaller width rear hub (basically cutting out a chunk between the two flanges), like what is being talked about before on this thread, so my 3 year old son can use it. The 3 speed cassette is alright, but it is heavy and doesn't give much range. My daughter is now on a 20" bike with a 9 speed 11-34 cassette, and it is amazing what she climbed right off the bat compared to the 3-speed Banshee. Yeah the bigger wheels help, but it is mostly due to the 300% range instead of 50%, and be able to rock crawl up steeper hills. If anyone can make this hub, I have money for your talents.

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    I second that---I would really love to have a 7-speed or 9-speed cassette on the Banshee.

    And in the future, I would have happily paid the same price as the Savage 1.0 if it had come with standard mtb rear hub spacing and a 7/9 speed rear cassette/derailleur/shifter.

    Spawn? Islabike? Anyone?

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    Awesome, thanks for the replies! Sounds like I will pick up a 22t front for him since we do almost all trail riding. He can out pedal me running beside him on our street which makes me nervous.

    Regarding the flipflop hub, would I just drop something like the following on the second side in addition to the 14t hub it came with? Shimano Single Speed Freewheel | Chain Reaction Cycles

    Here's a video of him riding our local trails on his runbike: Bens Ride - YouTube

    It will be a while before we can get his banshee there due to size and comfort, but I don't expect it will be long.
    Spencer

  133. #133
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    I went for a 22t chainring on my son's 16" bike, and 16t on the freewheel. (12 inch hotrock was 28/18 iirc) and he manages slight hills more easily.

    BUT I wish I had gone for 18t freewheel. Infact I may buy one and give it a try. I don't know how much difference those 2 teeth would make. I was worried about him spinning out, but he doesn't, and still has plenty of speed.

    He also has short cranks (89) and as he grows I will replace these with the next size up, which might help too?

  134. #134
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    Quote Originally Posted by BullSCit View Post
    What I really would love is if someone would make me a smaller width rear hub (basically cutting out a chunk between the two flanges), like what is being talked about before on this thread, so my 3 year old son can use it.
    BSC- I made a couple preliminary measurements of an older 135mm 7-speed cassette hub (Shimano Deore DX) that I have kicking around. To go from 135mm to 108mm axle width, 27mm of width needs to be removed. Problem is that the centerline of the hub then is only 5mm offset from the drive side flange center, very little dish for the spokes on drive side, more typically hubs have around 19-20mm of offset from the drive side flange to the hub centerline but the light weight of a 50lbs kid should give you much less of a need for lateral strength so it might still be OK. You could probably help the spoke geometry by using a singlewall rim and re-drilling the spoke holes offset toward the non-drive side to get a bit more of a dish angle on the drive side.
    8/9 speed width cassette body hub is definitely a no-go, the drive side hub flange would be at the hub centerline. Another possibility is to go with a 5-speed freewheel and threaded hub instead of a cassette. A 5-speed freewheel is even narrower than a 7-speed cassette so leaves a bit more room for getting the drive side flange offset from centerline.

  135. #135
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    GJ,

    I posted something on the Fat Bikes forum about this, as people are talking about doing the exact opposite, and adding material to a 135mm hub to make it a 170 or 190mm rear hub for a conventional (non-Surly) dropout. I came to the same conclusion you did, that the dish on the drive side spokes would be almost perpendicular to the skewer/axle bolt. Not sure how to get around that, and maybe would be able to spread the dropouts a bit (I wish for once it was steel). Seems like if you cold spread it out to 120mm and then cut 15mm off of the hub width.

    Sorry for my ignorance, but are free-hubs all the same just not as wide from 7 to 10 speed? What I really want is range, and I could live with losing 3-4 gears in the middle, if I can still have 11 and 36.

  136. #136
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    8/9/10 speed cassette hub body is all the same width, a 7-speed cassette body is 5mm narrower.
    Probably best solution however is to follow Tigworlds example and adapt 5 cogs of a MTB cassette to fit on a BMX cassette hub which is intended as a singlespeed so is even more narrow. See FAQLoad - Adding gears to a single speed BMX

    Difficulty with this is finding an affordable source for suitable BMX casette hubs that take road/MTB cassette cogs. The only SS cassette hubs I find online are prohibitively expensive for my kids bike projects and stuff like this doesnt seem to ever show up at bike co-op, or even on e-bay. Example ss hubs AREs;
    Velocity - Singlespeed Disc Rear Hub
    or
    Chris King BMX Rear

    Also beware that BMX/TRIALS world more typically uses a micro cassette that takes a tiny 9-tooth SS cog, smaller diameter so not useful for adapting to road/MTB multi-cogs.

  137. #137
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    Expecting our banshee to show up tomorrow. Wish I found this thread sooner, but we ended up getting our 4 yr old a 16" Hotrock last july. The training wheels came off a few months ago and even though it's a great bike, the side pull brake we put on wasn't very inspiring. Gonna try taking him on some easy trails this weekend so we'll see how he does with having better brakes. Looking at the pictures, I'm guessing I'll have to replace those tires right away. Any recommendations? He'll be 5 in May and I think he's around 15% percentile in height so I'm hoping the bike will last him at least until he turns 7.

  138. #138
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    Schwalbe Black jack 1.9s is what I went with. Sourcing was a pain, as they were back ordered.

    The mad mikes are heavier, but easier to source.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  139. #139
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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    PM'd you. Have tires that I can't use on my 3y/o's Banshee.
    -G


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  140. #140
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    Got your pm. Thanks for the offer, but I found a brand new set of kenda k50s in my garage from a leftover baby jogger we recently got rid of. They're 1.75 and I would have preferred 2.1s, but not gonna complain at this point. The stock tires were 1.5 I believe.

    The bike came in, but I got dinged pretty hard from ups. It was around 70 bucks in fees and I paid close to 35 for Purolator shipping. Not gonna tell the wifey about that one O_o.

    Got it built up in a little over an hour with the tire swap. The most time was spent adjusting the brakes. With the new tires and no reflectors it's coming in at 15.8lbs. I think I weighed the hotrock 16 at 17.8lbs or somewhere close to that.

    Hopefully we'll be able to get a test ride in tonight. He hasn't seen it yet.

  141. #141
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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    Bummer on the fees and dings! Any damage?
    Good score on the tires. Those should be great. Where are you, I was worried about fees but got lucky. I read that the standard Canadian post option was the best way to avoid them. What is Purolatir shipping?
    Congrats, he's going to love it!
    G


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  142. #142
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    There was a little damage to the box, but the bike was fine. I'm in Los Angeles and I think Purolator is Canada's equivalent to UPS. I don't remember there being many options for shipping when I bought the bike. Oh well.

    Weight difference is pretty noticeable even though the hotrock was pretty light to begin with. My son loves it.

    First ride.
    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg

  143. #143
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    I just got a 26t chainring for my daughter's Banshee. I know 2 teeth isn't much but I just want to take the edge off.

    I ran into an issue though. The stock chainring has holes big enough for the nuts (like the smaller ring on a 2x). The chainring I got was intended for the inner ring on a triple so it fits the bolts, not the nuts(since it was intended to bolt right to the crank spider).

    Did you guys that swapped chainrings find some that were made for a 2x crank or did you reverse the bolts/nuts and shim them? Or some other magic I'm missing?

    Thanks-
    G

  144. #144
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  145. #145
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    Quote Originally Posted by fire_strom View Post
    I ended up using different bolts and spacers.

  146. #146
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    Took my 4 yr old to ride some dirt for the first time this past weekend. He did great, but i still need to play with the brakes. Trying to adjust the front so he can't lock it up so easily. Such a huge difference compared to the side pull brake he had on his hotrock.

    Tempted to get the 2.4" wide kendas now.

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-_dsf2835.jpg

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-_dsf2848.jpg

  147. #147
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    Thanks to this thread I just bought the Banshee. We live in Austin and have plenty of hills. So from what I've read it looks like the 22 or 24 is working better than the stock 28?
    Ok, so those that have already done the research and have experience, what are the best
    Tire (size)?
    Chainring size?
    Full face helmet/elbow pads?

    He will use these for trails similar to the photo above, but with more rocks thrown in.

    Thanks in advance for any help!

  148. #148
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    Evs option mini pads are pretty nice.

    Fox also does some peewee pads.

    Seems like the evs pads are a little smaller than the fox peewee pads.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  149. #149
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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    Quote Originally Posted by sherpaxc View Post
    Thanks to this thread I just bought the Banshee. We live in Austin and have plenty of hills. So from what I've read it looks like the 22 or 24 is working better than the stock 28?
    Ok, so those that have already done the research and have experience, what are the best
    Tire (size)?
    Chainring size?
    Full face helmet/elbow pads?

    He will use these for trails similar to the photo above, but with more rocks thrown in.

    Thanks in advance for any help!
    Congrats!
    I just put a 26t chainring on. Too early to tell if it is small enough. I have a 3.6 y/o and she was doing ok with the 28t but her cadence was really slow. Only one ride since the change so we'll see.

    I put very knobby 2.125" tire on and though it looked great it made the bike a little unwieldy. I could see her confidence dropping so I pulled them after a few days. I have another set of 2.125" tires comeing because I am a slow learner and the stock ones look so skinny.
    Here are the knobbys:


    Here are the others, they're Kenda. I think it is the BMX kontact tread:



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  150. #150
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    i went with schwalbe black jack 1.9's.

    they seem plenty big,

    my daughters still a little small for her banshee. if she had already known how to ride a bike, she'd prol be okay on it, but she doesnt have the confidence yet.

    oh well. at least her 5 yr old sis likes the savage.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  151. #151
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    Thanks ya'll. I think I'll just put I different size freewheel on the flip flop hub. I'll have to look into what size is best.

    My son is 4.5 years old and will just barely fit this bike. He is quite a little guy and grows slow so I think we will have this thing for quite a while. I rides really well but was getting discouraged with his crappy rei 12 inch bike that weighed as much as him. I can't blame him. hopefully this works out well. I'll post pics when we get it.

    BTW, how long did Spawn take to ship? I haven't really gotten any communication other than an email that they recieved my order.

  152. #152
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    the banshee took almost a month, but i DID order it right around x-mas.

    the savage took maybe 10 days, but i think it was more like a week. it arrived ALOT quicker than i expected.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  153. #153
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    ok thanks. Did they send you a tracking number or anything? Or let you know that it had shipped?

  154. #154
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    Not even a hint.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

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  155. #155
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    I pre-ordered a new banshee. After I noticed on their website that the order had been processed/shipped with no tracking label I used their contact page. Max said that CanadaPost was supposed to have sent a shipping notice, but he found me a tracking number regardless.

    2 weeks later, after the bike arrived, I found the CanadaPost tracking notice in my google Spam folder. They sent it at the right time... I just didn't see it.

  156. #156
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    Mine took about five days to get to California. I got a tracking number as soon with my email stating my order was complete.

  157. #157
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    Hopefully the mtb god is smiling on me when I order a furi.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  158. #158
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    I ordered a Savage 1.0 last week for my 5 year old son. Gotconfirmation and tracking number for Purolator from Spawn. The bike went from BC to Seattle and is making it's way across the USA now, estimated delivery is March 26, hopefully without any more fees.

  159. #159
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    Quote Originally Posted by ilmfat View Post
    Hopefully the mtb god is smiling on me when I order a furi.
    My oldest got a Gremlin last summer... absolutely KILLER Bike. I hope yours loves the Furi as much.

  160. #160
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    Actually, I sourced some 85mm cranks (custom), and she can ride the banshee, tho the q-factor is atrocious. Gonna pick up some 89mm from spawn when they come in.

    That, coupled with a set of hope/gordos for my 29er, means no furi.

    But she gets better everyday on the banshee.

    Once again, THANK YOU SPAWN CYCLES!!!!!!!
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  161. #161
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    My son's savage 1.0 20" arrived yesterday and I was more excited than when my Yelli frame arrived in 2012. What a great looking quality frame, the pictures on Spawn's site do not do it justice. Got it assembled and he rode it for fit for 10 minutes in the rain. When the weather improves will post some pictures.

    If you are on the fence about one of these, don't worry--it's even better in-person and worth the extra money.

  162. #162
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    I was surprised when I saw the chainstay yoke on the savage.

    That frame is made for serious work.

    I'm looking forward to the 24".
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  163. #163
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    I want to order up a Banshee for my daughter, but all the colors except red are out of stock. We really want to get her the pink if the wait isn't too long (1-2 weeks).

    I send spawn an email but no reply yet.

    Anyone know the deal? Or does anyone have a good pic of the red color (is it a candy red?) - there is nothing on their website.

    These spawn bikes look perfect! My daughter is already used to handbrakes on her OSET electric moto, so I'm over the moon that I can get her a light bike with no coaster brakes!!
    Happiness is a warm 2 stroke.

  164. #164
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    Steve,

    I would recommend trying their web contact form, not eMail. Any time I've tried to reach them in the past I got a reply within 24 hours off the web form, but never from eMail. Their spam filter must not like my eMail address...

  165. #165
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    I used their web contact form (not email - sorry my bad). Guess I should be more patient, it's only been 20 hours.
    Happiness is a warm 2 stroke.

  166. #166
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    Always possible they're swamped... they have the revamped Gremlin/Furi coming out any day now. But slow response is probably the one thing that I'd give them a minus on, alas. Wish they had a phone number... or a US dealer who could contact them for you.

  167. #167
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    I think it depends on where they are in the delivery cycle.

    If they don't respond, they're probably building bikes.

    +1 to the -1 for communication.

    Words really starting to take off about them. I think they are on the cusp of expanding (just my guess), and that's always a rough transition.

    Here's hoping for an idaho shop to pick them up.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  168. #168
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    They responded on my Facebook inquiry in about 3 hours.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  169. #169
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    Quote Originally Posted by ilmfat View Post
    I was surprised when I saw the chainstay yoke on the savage.

    That frame is made for serious work.

    I'm looking forward to the 24".
    Right, on! I looked it over and told my wife the frame quality is like my bikes. I am so glad that I didn't settle for a boat anchor Trek or Specialized with useless "suspension" fork and that didn't fit as well.

    There was a gamble with fit buying the Savage online but the frame design and that the seat drops down so far provides for a wide range of sizing. The fit range allows for my son to essentially sit only slightly higher than he was on his older 16" wheel balance bike, easy for him to touch the ground to dismount. there's no way he'd get that on a 20" specialized or Trek.

  170. #170
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    Successful 3-speed Banshee conversion

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-banshee.jpg

    Thanks to this thread and some help from Spawn, the above picture is my 5 year old's 3-speed Banshee. I was able to use the original handle bars (the X-5 shifter just barely fits between the bend in the bars and the brake lever).

    The complete parts list for the 3-speed conversion is:
    1) SRAM X-7 short cage 9-speed derailleur (with longer stop screw)
    2) Problem Solver Chain Tensioner with Derailleur Hanger
    3) SRAM chain
    4) SRAM X-5 9-speed rear shifter
    5) Cable housing and zip ties
    6) 16,19,22 3-speed "scooter" rear freewheel

    Unfortunately, screwing in the (custom/long) "low" stop screw far enough to stop the chain from derailing inward also interferes with the throw to the high gear, so the derailleur can over-shift. I would need to modify the derailleur cage to create something for the screw to hit against. As it is now, he can over-shift and throw the chain off of the low gear, but he can't shift into the spokes thanks to the shifter being in the lowest gear (it can't pull the cable any farther).

    I also replaced the front chain ring with a 24T granny gear (required new bolts/spacers). The 24T/22T low gear is low enough he can get up a surprising number of hills. Lower would be better, but it's a balance with the high gearing for the flats.

    I'll keep dreaming that Spawn will someday make a 7-speed or 9-speed 16" bike, but until then, this is a great setup.

    Thanks to all who posted about their 3-speed conversions.

  171. #171
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    awesome!

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    Just wanted to share the latest modifications to my sons Banshee. Got the bike last spring- and added a new flipflop hub with 3 speeds and derailleur. The extra gears definitely helped him cover more trail with less walking, but the spread just wasn't big enough to offer significant help for climbing. So this spring I added a 2nd chainring. Now he has a 22 tooth inside the original 29(?) tooth. Went with thumb shifters as he didn't like the grip shifts on his brothers bike. I tried just running the 22 tooth as a single chainring, but he would redline on flat ground/driveway riding with his friends and get frustrated. While he isn't comfortable shifting on the fly yet, we can put it in the 22 tooth for trail riding, then click to the 29 tooth for downhills or flat bike paths. Going from 22 to 29 has had much more impact than the small difference available in the 3-speed free hub/cassette. This thread has been a HUGE help in my project, hope my post/picture might inspire or assist others in their efforts. My son just turned 6, but is only 37 pounds dripping wet with a full stomach. He has the balance and skills to rip up the trails, but his small size makes the hill climbing tough. And here in Vermont, you can't really go anywhere without some climbing. I know there isn't much of a market for 16" bikes with 7+ speeds in back, but room for a wider hub/cassette would be nice in my situation. After a year of backyard wrenching on the Spawn, I'm still super impressed with their quality design and manufacturing. Everything has held up to my ham-fisted adjustments and wrenching.

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-banshee3.jpg

  173. #173
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    That is inspiring, FreeHeel!

    I'm in a similar situation with my 5.5 year old being a little guy with enough coordination/skill to ride a 1x9 or 2x10 bike, everywhere we ride is hills, but he's not big enough to fit a 20". Before doing the 3-speed Banshee conversion, I thought that a 2x setup up-front would be better ("one climbing gear and one for-the-flats gear), but I wasn't sure how to execute it. A few questions:

    1) How did you attach the 2nd chain ring, correct spacing, etc?

    2) Can you post close-up pictures of the chain ring setup?

    3) Any tips on front derailleur type?

    4) Which 3-speed freewheel did you use? There are a few different size options out there. The lowest gear combo I found is the 16,19,22.

  174. #174
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    Hi Fireswamp, the 22-tooth chainring attached quite easily. I had some slightly longer chainring bolts kicking around, and just by luck had some washers that must have been designed for the purpose, because they separated the two chain rings so that it shifts just fine. I wish I had some exact dimensions to give you, but since they were just in the spare parts box in my basement from some previous bike I don't know the exact sizes. They almost certainly came off a old mountain bike of mine- nothing special. The front derailleur came out of the same box- I think it is just a top pull LX. I also had some plastic wedges/spacers that went around the seat tube to make the derailleur fit. Re: the 3-speed freewheel, I got the one that others had mentioned earlier in this thread. I can't remember the name, but I'll see if I can find it in my Amazon/Ebay account and let you know. I'll snap some more photos and count the teeth when I get home tonight.

  175. #175
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    I wonder if you could respace the frame to 120mm, if you could find an old 5/6-speed freewheel hub. E.g. Shimano has a 14-28T 6 speed freewheel cassette, if you could find the hub to go with it.

    I wonder if you can re-space an aluminum frame the way you can a steel one...

  176. #176
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    Fireswamp, sorry for the delay... hectic week. I did buy the Como 16-19-22 freewheel off Amazon. In my opinion it is the weak link here- it is heavy and has a fair amount of drag. What can you expect for $10? I notice it every time I back pedal his bike to clean the chain, or turn the pedals with my hand to shift gears for him. As I've thought more about this, I think if I did it all over again I'd keep the stock Spawn hub in back and try a 2 chainring set up in front. I think you might be able to find a 20 tooth ring, and then use the stock 29. I spent a lot of time and about $25 to buy a 29 tooth that was advertised as being "ramped and pined" because I thought it would help in shifting from the 22 up to the 29. Most 28 and 29 tooth rings are designed to be on the inside most position- not middle ring. Orgin8 had one that the website said was ramped and pinned- I found one on ebay, but when it arrived it had no ramps/pins. So I ended up using the ring that came on the bike and it shifts just fine. Lesson learned. The clamp on cable stop for the front derailleur came from Orgin8, 28.6mm. It was super simple- works fine. As for the chainring spacers- as I said I just got lucky that what I had worked. I'm guessing they came off an old 3 ring LX or XT crankset I had, bolts and spacers. I think I had to put the bolts in from the frame size, due to diameter of the nut and how it has to fit in the holes inthe chainrings- so if you can't get it to work from the crank arm side just try from the other direction. Re: the front derailleur, it is just a top pull LX. You will need some shims/spacers to fill out the space from the smallish seat tupe to the inside diameter of the derailleur clamp. If you buy it new you'll probably get what you need in the box- or your LBS can probably find in in the box of extras.

    Hope that helps, good luck!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg  

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg  

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg  

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg  

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg  

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-image.jpg  


  177. #177
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    Is this a 1" headset, threadless? What size seatpost does it take? Thanks.

  178. #178
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    1 1/8.

    25.4
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  179. #179
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    For those ordering for the US, did you have to pay a duty on top of shipping? Which shipping method?

    Thanks

  180. #180
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    I went with Canada post express, and did not have to pay duty. I've heard others say that UPS did result in a customs fee.

  181. #181
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    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)

    Ditto.

  182. #182
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    Im pretty sure ups ground was my only option for the savage.

    No duties on banshee or savage.

    Ymmv.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

    Climbing ain't so bad. - 2019

  183. #183
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    Thanks to all. Placing order today. They are backordered until late June, so fingers crossed for a speedy delivery.

  184. #184
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amom View Post
    For those ordering for the US, did you have to pay a duty on top of shipping? Which shipping method?

    Thanks
    My Savage was shipped by Purolator, which may have become UPS in the U.S.? I don't recall who showed up at the door. There were no additional shipping charges or taxes when it arrived. It travelled from Vancouver BC to Fairfax, VA, in about 2 weeks, maybe a little under that, ground shipping.

  185. #185
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    What kind of bottom bracket is this, 68 threaded English? Mine (er...his) Banshee is on its way and I'm already thinking about upgrades. It's an illness.

  186. #186
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    Does anyone know the hub width of the first gen Banshee? Is it 110mm like the new Banshee?

    I'm sort of thinking i might try to get an IGH if I can find one in the correct width. I forget if I've read in this thread if anyone tried this or not.

  187. #187
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    Thats a darn good idea.
    crap! i gotta learn to climb. - 2011

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  188. #188
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    I just took a look, and Sturmey-Archer has some 5 speed IGHs at 111mm; I can't see that 1mm would be a problem anywhere...

    S-RF5(N)
    • 5 Speed low flange, internal gear hub without brake (freewheel)
    • Available in either 119mm or 111mm over locknut
    • Now available with a 9 spline driver
    • New wide gear ratio of 256%

    EDIT: Darn; now I want to get one for my daughter...

  189. #189
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    Yep, Sturmey Archer is what I found! They list that 5 speed 111mm OLD and a three speed hub with 108 mm OLD. Spoke hole count is different but I'm assuming that's the existing rim will be ok given that they are just lightweight little kids.

    grip shift and trigger shifter available for both the five and the three speed.

    my bike shop is looking into sourcing the bits for me and getting me pricing info and they will let me know, I will post up the results if it is successful!

    Edit: many typos due to voice typing on cell phone

  190. #190
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    Please do, XJaredX... although I must note that, once again, you are tempting me to spend money on bicycles! My daughter's birthday is in August; Maybe I'll get a new wheel laced up for her as a birthday present. Only problem I can see is fitting the shifter on the stock bars, since she already has a bell on there. Maybe I can move the bell to her left side, and have it work backwards...

    WHat's the gear range on the 3-speed hub? The 5-speed was somewhere around 250%, which is pretty good.

  191. #191
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    I'm having trouble scrolling the specifications window on my phone but I think it is 177% for the three speeds. I'll keep you updated even if it is a failure, lol

  192. #192
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    I got a Banshee last night, took it apart, and weighed each component. Hey, I'm a weight weenie at heart. If you're interested, I posted it in the WW forum: http://forums.mtbr.com/weight-weenie...ts-917945.html

    Frame = 1081g or 2.4 lbs

    Review of the Spawn Cycles Banshee (16" wheeled bike)-yraje8et.jpg
    Last edited by split; 06-13-2014 at 12:02 PM.

  193. #193
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    XJaredX: You win.

    I have asked my LBS to spec an SRF-5 16" wheel for me. We'll see if they can source the part... The only US website that lists the 111mm hub is Bike Tools etc., and it is out of stock at the moment. Per eMail, they will not have more for "several months." Here's hoping my LBS can see about squeezing one out of UBS or another distributer.

  194. #194
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    Haha! I was just at my LBS for something unrelated after asking them yesterday to search for a hub, and they aren't having any luck either. This might be tricky!

  195. #195
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    I am exploring the idea of ordering (gasp) direct from China if my LBS can't find anything.

    Place that will drill a 28 hole 16" rim:

    Online Shop 16" Aluminum alloy bicycle rims,Colorful Anodized/Powder coating Available, Free Shipping!|Aliexpress Mobile

    ...and eBay China has wheels built with the SRF5 (for a Brompton) but I am unsure if the rim width is acceptable. And unsure if I am confident enough in trusting eBay China

  196. #196
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    Or just wait until they come in stock again at BTE? Can't hurt to email and ask them about it...

    Personally, I wouldn't trust ebay china (without living in china)

  197. #197
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    Instead of eBay China, I'd pay the premium to get it from SJS Cycles in England. $50 more than ordering from a US distributer, but a reputable company instead of a foreign-country eBay? Simple question to me.

    Sturmey Archer 5 Speed SRF5

    Just make sure you get the 28 hole version...

    Couple that with a 28h wheel like This one from Niagra Cycle, and you should be good to go for $300 or so. (Just need spokes and wheel-building)

  198. #198
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    Oooh, thanks, that helps! I'd rather not go the asian route unless I absolutely have to.

  199. #199
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    I rode a Rohloff 14 gear Speedhub for 5+ years on a 42# all-mountain Santa Cruz Bullit, and there is no way I would put something like that on my kid's bike. It was heavy, and it was so inefficient with so much drag. I went from barely hanging on a pedally ride with a buddy, to squashing him the next week when I went back to a conventional drivetrain with everything else the same on the Bullit. Range is awesome, but efficiency is much more important, especially for little guys/gals. My 3.5 year old is about ready to start riding the Banshee, and I'm going to get rid of the crappy 3 speed rear, and go to the 2 speed front FreeHeel talks about above. Would much rather prefer to put a real rear hub and cassette on back, but it's all about compromises.

  200. #200
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    Where are you guys sourcing your 16" rims from? I need one in black.

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