Long gone are the days when you only had to go to your local shop (ok, 2-3 local shops) to browse and buy the best bicycle you could find. Now you have many online shops (yes, even Amazon has some options here), review sites and price comparison engines (no link here because this is really dependent on where you live). You also have safety standards (helmets, anyone?). Yes, things got more complicated.
Initially, I went like: “I’ll look online for a bit and I’ll get something”. Then, the “bit” went into hours and I knew I was in trouble. Enter the mini-project!
The project is a simple procurement one :). We’ve decided in advance we will not invest more time in purchasing parts and building a custom thing (mainly because it’s almost impossible for toddler bikes).
Requirements are simple: Get a bike for a 2 year-old. Now let’s go deeper:
- Dimensions - Apparently, these days you get a bike for babies the same way you get it for adults. Measure first, cycle later-* Type of bike - Several are available
- Bicycle with pedals and helper wheels
- Balance bike
- Color - in my days, you would only have one color, maybe two if you were lucky
I’m not going to do a SWOT analysis for the types of bike, or color, or dimension, but… It looks like getting a balance bike id the way to go.
Once I figured out the type of bike, I went to research the various available bikes based on reviews from e.g. twowheelingtots.com. I ended up with a table with the following criteria:
- Name - The bike + manufacturer name
- Weight - An important factor apparently
- Seat min + max height - We want the baby to be capable of riding the bicycle now
- Price - Naturally
- Location - Where can we get the bike from (after consulting the price search engines)
- Other - Other options + prices (e.g. personalised sticker)
- Shipping cost - Shipping is not always free
- Total cost - the total
- Observations - notes (e.g. no foot rest, narrow handlebars)
- Reviews - locations of reviews.
The actual file is here.
Once the analysis was completed (objective report based on requirements), I have consulted all stakeholders (except for the baby, because it’s supposed to be a surprise). The decision was made to purchase the Woom 1. I have placed the order for the bike (and later for a helmet) and we declared the project concluded. However…
Choice is good, but choice is also bad. We ended consuming about 2 evenings for this. Hopefully the client (aka baby) will like it. We will close the project definitively when he’s going to use it.
It was fun doing it!