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kids' mtb or bmx?

oakyoaky Posts: 141
edited September 2010 in Family & kids cycling forum
First let me apologise. I know there are many previous posts asking similar questions to mine. I've read them. But still can't find a suitable answer.

I'm looking for a new bike for my son. He's just about to turn 6 and is getting too big for his 16" Specialized Hotrock. I know exactly what I want: alu frame, 20" wheel, rigid forks, single speed. But I can't find it anywhere. All kids' MTBs seem to have gears or suspension forks. I don't think he needs either, and I don't know where else to look.

So, I'm now considering a racing style BMX. Something like the GT Power micro or Haro mini. However I know nothing about BMX. From what I can see the wheel size and top-tube length are similar to a kids MTB, but the recommended age is only 4-6. So I'm confused.

Could anybody tell me if the BMX is a suitable alternative? Or recommend a good single speed MTB?

Thanks in advance.


  • zebra67zebra67 Posts: 113
    We have the GT you're looking at. Sizing is tricky with them. You are best off phoning the vendor, giving your child's measurements, and seeing what they suggest. Methinks the Micro is what you want, but I wouldn't swear by it -- ours, what my son got at age barely 7yo but a small barely 7yo - might be a Junior Pro, come to think of it.

    Keep in mind on the racing BMX that the default cranks will probably be 160mm -- which is way too long, you may well want to swap them for 135mm or so. Otherwise I agree that it's the perfect sort of all-purpose bike for this age group, gears are a waste of time ime with under 9s. My almost 9yo daughter currently uses the GT for all kinds of cycling races, but she rides an Islabike Beinn 20 for day-to-day, mostly because we bought it before we realised how nice the GT was. GT could use slick tyres, I suppose.

    I wish that the Islabike Cnoc came in a 20" wheel size. I love the foot rear brake on them.
  • oakyoaky Posts: 141
    Thanks Zebra. I discovered the Junior size just after I posted. From what I can work out, it's a much closer geometry to a 20" mtb. The micro has a much shorter wheelbase. I hadn't considered the cranks though. Guess I'll have to do a bit more research. I reckon that's the way I'm going though - I wish I'd had a bike like that when I was that age.
  • My 8 YO got a 18" frame 26" wheel bike for his birthday. Anything less than a full size fame that he wont grow out of until he's 15-18 just makes sense. He love's is and can keep up most of the time.

    My other son is easily ready for a 20" wheeled bike but refuses flat to ride his older brother's 20" BMX when we all go out for a ride. It's a lethal triumvirate equation of parental sytle, child's competence & confidence and peer pressure.
    I used to just ride my bike to work but now I find myself going out looking for bigger and bigger hills.
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