Bobbin bikes - stylish city bikes for kids
This month we're taking a closer look at the Bobbin Bikes kids bike range. If you've not heard of them, Bobbin Bikes are a small independent bike company, founded in 2007. Based in London, the company prides itself on the aesthetics of its bikes which have been designed to spread the joy of cycling to people who love life, but aren’t bike nerds. So with a Bobbin Bike you're buying a beautiful cycling experience, rather than a high-end technical specification.
Possibly best described as 'city bikes for kids', Bobbin have recently broadened their offering, moving away from the beautiful pastel colours and step through frames they're famed for. The kids pedal bikes all come with easy reach brake levers which are designed for smaller hands to operate, a relaxed upright riding position and easy to adjust seat posts - as kids do have a habit of growing quickly.
Bobbin bikes are steel framed, so are best stored inside. They're designed for leisurely cycling rather than tearing down single track or riding long distances on the road. Think hot summer days, riding along flat cycle tracks, butterflies flitting past as you glide to your riverside family picnic spot.
Here's a closer look at what's in the range, starting with the smallest bikes. Bobbin have two styles of balance bikes in their range. The original bike released was the Gingersnap Balance Bike:Balance bikes are the best way to get your toddlers cycling, and the Bobbin Gingersnap balance bike. It weighs in at 5kg, so isn't the lightest balance bike out there, but it's definitely one of the most stylish! The saddle can be adjusted from a lowest point of 41cm to a full height of 50cm.
In Summer 2017 Bobbin released the Moonbug balance bike, with a slightly higher stand over height but a lower saddle height. (37cm to 47cm). The Moonbug comes in a matte red and a gloss blueberry.
Once your child has mastered their balance bike, they're ready to start pedalling. Next up in the Bobbin Bike range is the Gingersnap starter bike range, with two models - 12" for ages 2 - 4 years and 16" wheels for ages 5 and above. Both starter bikes come with stabilisers, although if your child has progressed from a balance bike they're unlikely to need them.
With easy to use brakes, a comfortable saddle and responsive steering, the Gingersnap got the thumbs up from our 4 year old reviewer.
For the balance bike and 12" / 16" Gingersnaps the current colour options are mint green (which looks almost pale blue in the flesh) and pastel pink.
If your child prefers their bikes a darker colour and with a higher top tube (and isn't bothered about a basket) the newer Moonbug bike in blueberry fits the bill for ages 5 and over. The 16" version comes with stabilisers, colour complimentary mudguards to protect their clothing from dirty puddles, plus matching saddle and handlebar grips.
Bobbin city bikes for older kids
Once your child has mastered pedalling confidently and is tall enough to move onto the larger wheel sizes, the Gingersnap is available in 20" and 24" sizes.
With the step through loop steel frame, 6 gears and chain protector this is the ultimate city bike for kids aged 7 through to early teens (depending on the size of your child). Both the 20" and 24" Gingersnaps come in a choice of three colours - pastel pink, mint green and blueberry.
If you prefer a higher top tube, then the Moonbug is also currently available in the 20" wheel size in the blueberry colour, and is suitable for ages 7-9 (approx).
The 20" and 24" Bobbin kids bikes come with Shimano Tourney six speed gears which are operated by a grip shifter. The saddles are sprung for additional comfort and the brakes are easy reach.
Bobbin bikes for teenagers
Kids grow so quickly, so once they've outgrown the Bobbin Bikes kids bike range it's worth taking a look at their adult bikes. The frame size for the Bobbin Brownie starts at just 33cm, with 24" wheels, and is suitable for riders who are 4' 3" tall. There are then 35cm, 40cm and 46cm frames which come with 26″ wheels. The largest offering is the 52cm frame which comes with 700c wheels and is sized for cyclists up to 6′ tall.
The range of colours increases with the Brownie as the sizing increases too, which may appeal to image conscious teenagers! However, you need to note that the components are no longer child sized, baskets have to be bought separately and the seat posts require tools to adjust once you get to the adult sizes.
You can read our review of the Bobbin Brownie here.
Of course, once you get to the full adult bike range, there's a whole lot to tempt mums and dad's who enjoy accessorising with their mini-me!
Where to buy the Bobbin's city bikes for kids
Prices start at £100 for the balance bike through to £250 for the 24" wheel Gingersnap. Bobbin bikes are available from Evans Cycles (who can assemble the bikes for you if you order on-line but pick up in store), Wiggle and Tredz plus a number of local independent bike shops. The adult sized Brownies range in price up to £500 depending on size and colour.
Please remember that each child is different, so all ages stated are approximations - measure your child carefully if you're buying online!
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Affiliate disclosure: Some of the links in this article contain affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase Cycle Sprog may get a small commission for sending you the way of the retailer. This helps you find the bike you're looking for, and helps us keep Cycle Sprog running. Thanks for your support.
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