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Sizing a child to a bike

MTB-DaveMTB-Dave Posts: 42
edited February 2012 in Family & kids cycling forum
Hello i hope someone can help me,

I am wanting to get my eldest child (hes 5 in march) a decent alloy bike, Islabikes seem to be highly recommend.

However what my issue is, is this:

Isla bikes is around 300 mile away from me in one direction so not really practical for a drive, so using their size chart their 16" says min inside led of 42cm however he has an inside leg of 39cm will the three cm be an issue or would you go with it?

He is a confident rider without stablisers and has been for a year

He has sat on a 16 in Halfords and seems to fit it fine however it was steel and weight about the same as a small car lol.

Any help would be great,

Bike: Specialized Hard Rock Pro Disc 2010


  • chez_m356chez_m356 Posts: 1,893
    bit of a minefield that, personally i wouldn't worry too much about what the sizing guide says, especially if its just a few cm's, kids grow so fast that even if it was slightly large, in just a few weeks it would probably be perfect for him
    Specialized Hardrock Sport Disc 10- CANYON Nerve AM 6 2011
  • Mike HealeyMike Healey Posts: 1,023
    Why not try emailing Islabikes for advice?
    Organising the Bradford Kids Saturday Bike Club at the Richard Dunn Sports Centre since 1998
  • simon_esimon_e Posts: 1,706
    Why not try emailing Islabikes for advice?
    Better still, ring them up - 01584 856881.
    Aspire not to have more, but to be more.
  • htsw5htsw5 Posts: 72
    I've just been in the same position with Islabikes.

    I phoned Islabike last week looking for a bike for my son's 3rd birthday.

    First call they said that I should really measure my son before they can be sure which bike to go for.

    Second phone call yesterday, they asked for his measurements again, which I had done a bit quickly at the weekend. They were about 2cm below their specifications, but my thoughts were that he would quickly grow into it.

    The 'salesman' expressed the view that they didn't want to sell a bike that didn't fit and that perhaps I might want to check the measurements as the inside leg measurements in the chart were what they considered the absolute minimum for riding safely.

    He also said that as delivery was currently less than a week, I had plenty of time to remeasure and still get the bike in time for his b'day.

    I took the view that 'he'll grow into it'. I also didn't want the delay of having to remeasure him (and possibly missing b'day), so I persuaded the salesman that he should sell it to me.

    I have to admit you have to respect a company that is committed to ensuring that the bike fits even if it could cost them a sale. I guess they are right though. It could be quite off putting for a littl'un if their first experience of their new bike is hindered by not being able to put their feet down safely.

    My plan is now to get it out of the box and then check him against it. It might need to wait until the better weather...

    I've also just recieved notice that the bike should be with me tomorrow - not bad seing as I only ordered it yesterday.
  • merkinmerkin Posts: 452
    I tried to order a 26 small bike for my daughter, she was fine on the height but too short on the inside leg. I thought this was strange as she is fairly long legged if anything. They suggested that she should get a 24. This fits her OK but I doubt it will last long at all as we have had to raise the saddle quite a bit straight away. In hindsight I think she would have been fine on the 26. Not too much of a problem for us as she is the eldest so she can hand the bike down when she grows out of it. I did measure her barefoot mind so maybe I did it wrong??
  • Ok thanks for your help everyone, i have called them but i measured him wrong which made him have 8" legs lol. so I am ringing back today with the correct measurements lol.

    Basically I am stuck with the chart as the cnoc 16" says min inside leg 42cm and height 104cm and the Beinn 20" small says 46cm inside leg and 110cm height. my son's correct measurements are, inside leg 43cm and height 109cm

    I am unable to travel to see them as they 300 mile away in one direction so you can understand my situation I need to be certain he can ride it and not be disapointed on his birthday.

    any other info that anyone may have please add it.

    does anyone live close to Hull East yorks with a Beinn 20 small bike?

    Bike: Specialized Hard Rock Pro Disc 2010
  • Daz555Daz555 Posts: 3,976
    Inside leg is the key for the little-uns - being able to get their feet down. My 4yr old son's inside leg was the exact min for the Cnoc16 and it meant he could only get a tiptoe down on one side so it was a little on the large side. However this simply meant that starting himself off without assistance was not really an option for a few months. It did not hold back his learning at all really in terms of riding however.

    6 months he had both feet flat on the floor so the saddle has gone up. They grow SO FAST.

    If you lad is 3cm short on the leg for the Benin 20 then I fear it would be too big for him if my experience with the Cnoc is anything to go by.
    You only need two tools: WD40 and Duck Tape.
    If it doesn't move and should, use the WD40.
    If it shouldn't move and does, use the tape.
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