We first bought a 12″ bicycle for Z when he turned 3. It was his birthday present then.
Two years later, on his fifth birthday, he had outgrown the bicycle by a wide margin. The tiny 12″ bicycle had seemed so humongous on him.
Zach was standing at 113cm when we thought of changing the bicycle. I wanted an 18″ bicycle but it was an odd and rarely found size. 16″ would be just nice for him but I foresaw that it probably would be a year before he outgrew it. Hence, the next option was 20″. Most 20″ bicycles were for children above 120cm. It was not advisable to get a bicycle with a frame that was too big for them to handle because there would be a higher possibility of accidents.
We had a few recommendations and checked out various shops.
1. East Coast, Big Splash
2. Giant Hypermarket
3. Bike shop diagonally opposite
4. Treknology at Bukit Merah
6. Surfing online
– Bike Discount
7. A shop along middle road selling retro looking bicycle
8. Wheeler’s Yard
9. Read up on foldable bikes such as Dahon and Java
I would have loved to visit more bicycle shops but they were usually only opened till 7 and closed on Sundays.
Choosing a bicycle was a very personal choice because it depended on the built, ability and confidence of the child.
The only factors which stood consistent were the comfort, the stability and solidness of the bicycle body as well as how the bicycle glided. As I wanted a 20″ bicycle, I was also looking at the lowest, possible height of the seat from the ground. It should be 50-52cm for Z’s height.
Most of the 20″ bicycles were too tall for Z. He was petrified about suspending at high ground while having to control the bicycle. We considered a 16″ bicycle. It came with training wheels which we did not need and we had to top up for the kick stand. The bicycle frame was fabulous but I really felt that Z would outgrow it in a year’s time.
I read somewhere online that Puky was the Mercedes of children bikes. Locally, it retailed at $960! If I shipped from Germany, it would be 350€ and I would have to assemble myself. The bike seat was 57cm from ground. The model was recommended for a child with minimal height of 120cm.
We eventually ended up with a Trek bike. I was impressed with the selection, the sturdy built of the bike and the well thought design. There were 2 mudguards for the front and back wheel. There was a metal handle bar to assist us to lift the bicycle without exerting unnecessary force on the bike seat. There were a lot of reflectors. Most importantly, for a 20″ rim, the bike seat could be lowered to 50-52cm from the ground. It meant that Z could tiptoe whilst on the bike.
The version with single handbrake and back pedal brake, without mudguards, was $299. The version with dual handbrakes and mudguards was $315. We opted for the latter and also picked up a bell at $8, a set of knee/elbow guards with hand glove for $25 (a lot cheaper than the Micro guards that we got for X and that did not include the hand gloves) and a digital bicycle lock for $19.
The final bonus was that it could fit into our car boot. Yay to no bicycle rack for the time being!
More information on Trek bikes here.