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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was searching for a new bike for my 7 year old. He's 53" tall and has been on a Specialized Hotrock 20" that we picked up used a couple years ago. He's been going out to the trails with me more lately and the Hotrock just wasn't cutting it anymore. We haven't gotten it to the trails yet, but I can see that this bike should give him a confidence boost. The geometry is much better and the steering is not as twitchy as the Hotrock. The 24" tires should roll over the rocks and roots a little easier too. The SR Suntour air fork appears to work much better than the coil one on his Hotrock also.

I will post some more details after we get it out on the trail. Here's a couple pictures for now.


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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Ok you baited me into showing off my kid's Vertex 20.

Nearly stock except tires & SDG kids cockpit.

View attachment 1259161
Right on! Looks good!

It's awesome that they're building some rad little kids bikes. Proper geometry with shorter chain stays and decent components. We'll get out this weekend on the trails and let him rip around.

I wanted to post up our experience with the bike since I only found a few reviews when researching what to get. Hopefully it will be useful for others.

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
We got out yesterday for a little ride. We headed down the same trail we always take out of the parking lot. About an 1/8th mile in there's a Y where the trail splits. My son will always stop and ask which way. Yesterday he just said, "which way", and kept on rolling. Continuing on, I noticed he didn't need quite as many breaks as usual. I think the longer cranks and the proper 1x drivetrain combined for a much more efficient ride than his Specialized Hotrock. Not that there's anything wrong with the Hotrock, I just think the Vertex is much more geared towards being an actual mountain bike.

He saw a fire road leading up underneath the power lines and said, "let's go up there." Knowing it's a decent climb I tried to talk him out of it but he insisted and I figured it'd be a good test for the gearing. He was able to climb most of it which was pretty impressive. We definitely need to work on his sit and spin technique though. He's not used to having such an easy climbing gear and was trying to pedal like he was sprinting.

The Sram trigger shifters are much easier for him to manage vs the grip shift. The disk brakes work quite well. He found out on a wet root that the front brake works really good. He grabbed a little too much and washed the front tire out. He wadded it up pretty good for a slower speed crash. Him and the bike were ok though. He's not a graceful crasher. All in all I'm really happy with the bike. I think this bike is a great option for the money. Sure, it's not as light as some of the other kids specific brands, but at the price point it has a good spec and I think the geometry is really dialed. For his skill level and what I was willing to spend for a bike that he'll outgrow in a year or two, it's perfect.


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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Forgot the action shot. Approaching his first drop. He just rolled off of it, but still proud of him for trying it. I'm sure it won't be long and he'll be showing me how it's done.


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