There’s a lot of fun memories when thinking back to your childhood.
There’s a lot of fun memories when thinking back to your childhood. Playing in the streets until the lights came on, running through sprinklers, and of course, riding a bike anywhere and everywhere your puny little legs would carry you. But for many kids, getting the hang of their first means of transportation once the training wheels come off can be a struggle.
Many bikes for kids are too heavy, or the handle bars are too wide, and just as expensive as adult bikes. That’s where Shane Cusick and Chris Peel come in. The two recently launced a Kickstarter campaign for their children’s bike company Pello Bikes to remedy these problems.
Three years ago, Cusick, a father and avid cyclist, wanted to ensure he could have a bike that he felt would be the most comfortable for his own two boys so he began his research in creating one. His vision became clear after purchasing a brand name bike from a local bike shop and realizing that most bikes for kids were heavy and poor quality in material parts.
Cusick works with local non-profit, Bike Virginia and Peel works at The Martin Agency as a creative graphic designer. The two met through a mutual mountain-biker friend who figured they’d be a great match for each other due to their ideas, skills and project interests. From there, the wheels for Pello Bikes started to turn.
They launched their Kickstarter last month to make bikes that are high quality, lightweight, safe and designed specifically for kids. So far the two have raised just over $1,500.
“The bikes are designed and ready to go so we decided to Kickstart it because we really hope that it will be a really good promotion to get a company going so we’re using it as a pre-order system basically” said Peel.
The campaign runs until Friday, July 10th and from there they will start production on Pello Bikes and ideally start shipping them out by November.
Cusicks’ work has been focused on gaining information to begin designing different bikes suitable for all kinds of children. Some of the design work involved speaking with a physical therapist to design a bike that understands the ‘Ride Right Geometry’, a bike supporting good posture while riding. Another important factor for bikes is how much they weigh, so it was key to have the lightest components in the bikes so kids don’t have to struggle to haul a heavy bike around.
Pello said they shared their findings with the input of a professional bike fitter and a professional bike builder because a “great bike isn’t only about its quality and lightweight parts, but about how safe it truly is.”.
Pello Bikes has already been tested by kids and received great feedback. Currently, they have given eight bikes out to children to test ride. Peel said they’ve been getting parents involved with their kids by letting their kids literally kick the tires and just go crazy on the bikes.
The four different bikes that Pello Bikes has four different bikes including the Pello 14” Romper, Pello 16” Revo, Pello 20” Rover S., Pello 20” Rover 7 Speed. Each bike arrives 90 percent assembled with a “Pello” multi-tool kit so parents can easily put it together or adjust it.
Pello said he’s looking forward to introducing about six to eight newer models depending on the size of the child, coming up with a design suitable for kids up to 18 years old, and helping families spend more time cycling together. Ultimately, Peel and Cusick plan to remain a children focused brand.