My son is the factory Stacyc bike rider for Dirt Bike Vault. When we need to do research or test the bikes, he heads out to the practice track (our backyard) and gets to testing.
He has been riding his 12-inch since he was 2 years old. He shreds on the bike very well and rarely comes across an obstacle he can’t handle. He’s also almost always wide open.
If I had to estimate, he’s put somewhere between 100 and 150 hours on his Stacyc 12. It’s still in good condition and works fine, but you can tell it’s been ridden. He’s also sort of outgrown it.
He’ll turn 5 in a little over two months, but he’s tiny, so he hasn’t fully outgrown the 12 yet. He’s always one of the smallest 4-year-olds. He was riding it with the seat about halfway up, until recently I moved it all the way up.
Even with the seat all the way up and him being tiny, he still looked big on it. With him about to outgrow the 12 and his getting up there in hours, I decided to surprise him with a brand new Stacyc 16 (I also wanted it to test for this article on Dirt Bike Vault).
Below is Dirt Bike Vault’s new Stacyc 16 machine.
Note: You may have noticed that the battery on this bike isn’t stock. The rest of the bike is entirely stock – I literally picked it up from the dealership 15 minutes before this picture. The first thing I did was take the Stacyc battery adapter off his 12-inch and put it on this new bike. We have half a dozen Milwaukee batteries that he runs, and only 2 OEM Stacyc batteries, so I needed to make the switch right away.
As I mentioned, my kid is tiny for his age, so I was a bit worried he wouldn’t quite fit the 16-inch yet. Turned out this was sort of true, sort of not, but I was stuck in the middle because he’s too big for the 12-inch and just a bit too small for the 16-inch.
When riding the 16-inch, he’s completely fine, but in corners or when he comes to a stop, it’s a little tough for him to reach the ground. It didn’t seem to bother him too much, though.
Below are a few images of his 12-inch and 16-inch next to each other so you can see the size difference.
Was it worth it?
My son was incredibly happy. So, yes, that alone makes it worth it.
Outside of that, his happiness aside, I’d still say that yes, it was worth it.
The additional size in the wheels makes the bike handle bumps a LOT better. My son loved that part. I asked him, “The new bike handles the bumps much better huh? They’re not as hard?” He responded, “Oh yeah! It’s awesome.”
The bumps in the video below are MUCH smoother on the 16-inch than they were on the 12.
Also, the motor on the new bike (the 16) is brushless, compared to the brushed motor in the 12-inch. This makes the bike a little bit more efficient, and it makes it a bit faster. My son had been riding the smaller bike for quite some time and was ready for more speed.
Lastly, he often would drag his feet or put his feet down when he didn’t need to. He’d ride 80%+ of the time with his feet on the pegs, but sometimes he’d drag his feet or put them down.
Since the 16-inch is a tad too big for him, he can’t really do that. He rides 97%+ of the time with his feet on the pegs, and it’s helped him ride better. I like that as a parent. I like seeing him progress.