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I am hoping someone can help guide me in a direction. So my 10 yr. old is out growing his mongoose kong 20" and wants to stay fat. Knowing the cost towards the next bike? What do I look at next? 24" Fat from a big box store? Are there brands like Salsa or Surly etc. that trade up as he grows? I definitely know I cannot afford to buy new bike as he grows to an adult large or XL. Does anyone know of some other brands to look at that are sub 500. Any guidance would be great. Has anyone gone through this, and what did you do? Frame swaps? If there is a thread out there going over this, please direct me there; I looked for a few hours but did not locate anything... Thanks...
 

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My son was in the same predicament earlier this year. I own a Framed Wolftrax which I like so checked their site and found the Mini Sota. He’s been riding it now for several months and loves it.

I recently found a suspension fork on Amazon and installed it without difficulty. He’s now riding singletrack with me in MT and the bike is performing well.


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Used Mini-Sota 24's have been popping up on Craigslist for about $400 in Vermont lately.

When my son outgrew his 20" Tikes Bikes, I went a little nuts and built him up an old-school XS Blackborow. Like I said, a little nuts, but his mom will fit it when he outgrows it.

He's 9 in this video- 4'8" and about 75lbs.

 

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There's also the 24"x3" plus bikes by Scott, Cannondale and I think Specialized. Probably better suited for a kid.
 

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My son is 55lb and rides a Timberjack 20 at about 6psi front and rear. We swapped the front tire to a fat one, pretty much doing the job of a suspension fork. A rigid 24 with a fat front can be a good choice. I tend to think of kids' plus bikes as scaled down fat bikes, because at their lower weight we can dial the pressure down to fatbike levels. That said, if an XS size fat bike was an option, I'd go straight there. Even if it wasn't full fat, but a 26+ that could also take 27.5x2.4 or so.
 
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