Before the Holidays we did a bit on many of the currently available fat-bikes that are aimed at kids and I asked for readers to send me their impressions if they’ve owned a 20” or 24” fat-bike that one of their kids was riding. Tom, from Edmonton, sent us this story on the Specialized Fatboy 24 that his son rides. Read on!
After years on a fatbike, I was so excited to see high quality kids’ versions hitting the market. We got our 10 year old son, Siors, a Fatboy 24 as soon as they hit the market. He got a few days on snow in early spring. More importantly, he found that the traction and stability in the summer was far superior to his Hotrock 24 XC on singletrack. The good news was that fit-wise, reach and stand over are very comparable between the larger of the Hotrock 24’s and the Fatboy 24. He changed from a timid kid who would put up with going out to ride with a lot of coaxing to asking to go mountain biking on more and more challenging trails.
As far as the Specialized part of the equation goes, the build is sensible and durable. For genuine off road riding a wider range 10-speed and a smaller ring up front would be nice, especially as more gears have started trickling down price points. I had a 12-36 cassette in the parts box which helped a little. The flip side of this is that his Fatboy and his Hotrock weigh about the same. When comparing the cost of the bike to a new tablet or video game console, it is worth every penny. That $1000 price point seems to give a good balance of components and quality no matter the brand.
Now that we are seeing Plus-Sized kids’ bikes, I wouldn’t even consider a regular mountain bike if you want your kids to get the most fun they can have off the pavement. For my dollar, and my latitude, I still choose Fat over Plus.
Tom, Edmonton, AB
Do you have a story about your families experiences with 20” or 24” fat-bikes? We’d love to hear about them? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s so a story!