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Thread: Stroller advice

  1. #1
    Senior Member Lovey's Avatar
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    Stroller advice

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hello all,
    Mrs Lovey and I are expecting our first new addition to the family early next year, and were starting to look at some of the required baby gear. Geez, I thought my coffee [s]habit[/s] hobby was expensive ;D.
    At this stage were looking at prams/strollers (what is the difference BTW?), with the 3 wheel jogger type pram/stroller looking like the preferred option.
    If anyone has any suggestions, horror stories, or other general helpful advice, feel free to let rip.
    Thanks in advance,
    Steve.

  2. #2
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    Re: Stroller advice

    Hi Steve,

    With our first we got a swallow one from babyco. For a very cheap pusher it did the job. The only problem we got there was that the back wheels became a bit loose (not fall off loose, just wobbly) leading to the pusher wanting to always go one direction which became a bit annoying!

    When the second came we got a phil and teds vibe. No problems yet! If you have any plans at all for a second, I would really consider a phil and teds. The have some good deals available on the sports model at the moment. But dont try second hand - they seem to sell for lots (ive actually seem some sell more than the cheaper stores do them brand new!). The only reason we went the vibe over the sports is that we do lots of walking, and the vibe has a little more room to stride out (if you are tall a good thing!).

    Damian.

  3. #3
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    Re: Stroller advice

    We started off with a massive sports 3 wheeler. It takes up plenty of room in the boot and isnt exactly shop friendly. We quickly swapped to a stroller type that is light and takes up no room. The 3 wheeler has been retired to a beach pram only. With any 3 wheeler just be aware that they have to be very wide to be stable. this can be a nightmare in shops as not every store is built to accomodate them.

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    Re: Stroller advice

    Check out the Phil & Teds. We have ours and love it. Seems pretty popular with the Mothers Groups moms :).

    It is the narrowest 3 wheeler on the market, can be easily folded up and put in the car (about 12kg). It can have a seat added if you are brave enough to have a second one.

    It can also be made to lay flat and has 2 more upright positions. We have had it from Newborn to 16 months and still going strong. The only criticism my wife had was that when the baby is a newborn, it cannot be made to face you.

    B

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    Re: Stroller advice

    Congrats Lovey! We had our first in 2005 and got a Swallow Beema Q from Babyco (3 wheeler). I must admit it was our first serious pram shopping trip to a dedicated baby store (all other outings had been to Big W etc) but we were swayed that way over the others in the store on 1) looks, 2) the ongoing availability of a bassinet (which we bought last year for our second and was still available and current) and 3) because it had received a number of favourable reviews including from Choice (just as well this isnt Babysnobs... ;D). Three years on weve had no problems at all. It packs up quickly and into a relatively compact package, the wheels all come off in a matter of seconds. Its wide enough to be stable but not too wide for narrow aisles (theyve got the compromise right there IMHO), and the manouvreability of a three wheeler leaves four wheelers for dead!

    Weve also got a stroller. A stroller is one of those small things with a wheel (or two) in each corner that weigh about half a kilo and fold up to next to nothing (well not quite, but comparatively). Much cheaper and more lightweight, harder to steer and less comfortable but far more portable. Ours I think was about $60 from Big W. We always keep ours in the back of the wagon and its useful for moving slightly older kids (6 months+) when youre not going far and just dont want to carry them. When were going away somewhere or going out on a dedicated walk, we always take the pram. In coffee terms, the pram is the Diadema + Robur for home while the stroller is the plunger + hand grinder for camping!

    Things may have changed now, and Phil and Teds is a new name to me so view this advice in the context of whats current - although in themselves theyre still good products. The only other thing that I may have added would be a hand brake - at the time I couldnt see the point but if you do a bit of jogging or have hills near your place it can sometimes be tricky to control the descent of a 20kg pram + baby package!
    Greg

  6. #6
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Stroller advice

    My kids are 24 and 27.
    I think any examples of prams/strollers we used can only now be seen in a museum.

  7. #7
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    Re: Stroller advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Thundergod link=1221416614/0#5 date=1221434952
    My kids are 24 and 27.
    I think any examples of prams/strollers we used can only now be seen in a museum.
    Hopefully youll have em outa nappies soon TG ;D

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    Re: Stroller advice

    Just a comment on Gregs comment.

    3 wheelers and joggers are very different. You need a fixed wheel to jog (you can do this on Phil & Teds) but it is not recommended.

    You also cannot jog with a baby until after 6 months. The P&T is pretty robust for grass / gravel etc. It even manages well on sand.

    Rgds
    Ben

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    Re: Stroller advice

    Good point of difference Ben, we didnt need ours for jogging so didnt look into that but its worth pointing out for those who do. Ours has a swivel lock on the front wheel so it can be used in either a swinging or fixed configuration so I suppose this would make it both a 3 wheeler and a jogger. Weve normally left it swinging for manouvreability but on the few times its gone faster than walking pace its been really useful to lock the front wheel straight ahead. With a steady track and wide pneumatic tyres, it manages very well on road or off road, sand and so on - its pretty much go anywhere. I guess its basic configuration must be fairly similar to the P&T as we seem to be reporting similar benefits, except perhaps the swivel lock on the front wheel.

    Greg

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    Re: Stroller advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Pullman link=1221416614/0#8 date=1221437934
    Good point of difference Ben, we didnt need ours for jogging so didnt look into that but its worth pointing out for those who do. Ours has a swivel lock on the front wheel so it can be used in either a swinging or fixed configuration so I suppose this would make it both a 3 wheeler and a jogger. Weve normally left it swinging for manouvreability but on the few times its gone faster than walking pace its been really useful to lock the front wheel straight ahead. With a steady track and wide pneumatic tyres, it manages very well on road or off road, sand and so on - its pretty much go anywhere. I guess its basic configuration must be fairly similar to the P&T as we seem to be reporting similar benefits, except perhaps the swivel lock on the front wheel.

    Greg
    P& T has swivel lock :)
    I cant believe I am debating the benefits of Prams rather coffee machines. :)

  11. #11
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    Re: Stroller advice

    Have had a Mountain Buggy 3 wheeler for the little guy (going on 3 now). Its been a fantastic stroller with plenty of carry spaces for things....
    My only recommendation is go somewhere trustworthy that has a good range and test them all out... look for the following things:

    - how easy is is to set up and put down
    - how big is it (good shops will let you try and fit it in the boot of your car, assuming its close by - we are glad we did as 2 of the strollers we were looking at wouldnt fit)
    - whats the build quality like
    - how easy are the brakes to use
    - how easy is the harness to use
    - ask the staff what the return rates for broken strollers are for the brands (you would be surprised how many break early on)
    - if you dont have a subscription to choice it can be worth it - Im surprised at how many of the strollers we were looking at failed some of their simple tests and some even failed under load

    Last but not least - try them out.. its the first "car" for your kid... push it around the shop, put it down and up etc....

    And remember you dont have to have just 1 stroller - we have the 3 wheeler for most trips, but also have a very small 4 wheel stroller bought on special that we take when we know we are going to be pressed for either boot space or isle space (restaurants etc) -

    GS


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    Re: Stroller advice

    Our tips:

    Light-weight (~11kg)
    Easy to fold in one step
    Packs down/fits in boot without removing wheels (imagine wet days)
    Fits thru Coles checkouts
    Wheels big enough to go up gutters
    Lies flat for sleeping + changing nappies

    Personally prefer a 3-wheeler.

  13. #13
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    Re: Stroller advice

    Congrats Steve,


    Dont really know 100% the difference between a stroller and a pram, but we always assumed the stroller was just a smaller light weight version of the pram.

    FWIW, our beautiful boys are nearly 3 & 5 so we are just about to close the pram/stroller chapter..........whoo hoo!

    We went with a Valco 3 wheeler because it has accessories making it adaptable over its life: as you baby grows, the requirements of a pram will change.

    First we used the bassinet option, which is basically a removable cocoon that clips into the pram. This was great for the first few months [sleeping baby] and has the bonus of being removable so that when you visit friends the bassinet can come inside, giving your baby somewhere comfortable to sleep.

    Next, once your child can sit up, you use it as a basic pram [the bassinet is removed], the sitting angle can be adjusted via zips from a fully sitting position to a fully reclining position.

    In its final stages, we added an toddler seat so both our boys could be carried together.

    What you come up with will depend on your own needs, but Ill list some of our drivers and experiences with the pram to give you some food for thought.

    We liked the Adaptability [as above] but you could also consider changing to different prams as you babys needs change.
    Dedicated functions are possibly better than the adaptable/onesize fits all approach.
    Baby stuff is easy to sell, so this may be a better option for you.

    Manouverability was important to us.
    My wife wanted to walk everywhere [and generally still does], so the larger pneumatic tyres and a 3 wheeled configuration on the Valco were good.
    We have front steps, and regularily used dirt tracks [where we walked our dog] plus there are always gutters etc. to negotiate.
    I think 3 wheeled prams are easier to steer.
    The rear axel is relatively wide, great for stability but some people found that the pram would be tight to move indoors and through some supermarket checkouts, but we found it ok.

    Folding/collapsing is important as you will be putting this thing in and out of your car more times than you will ever think possible.
    The Valco did this well, but it [and probably any other pram] will require a bit of practise. I recommend you and your partner do practise this, as, if it can be a seamless exercise, your life will be much easier.
    There is something really satisfying when youre in a car park and another car is waiting for your spot and you kick the back of the pram, push the handle and fold the thing over in seconds.
    Equally, we were able to pull it out of the boot and sort of throw it down and open it a at the same time..........smooth!

    Obviously, you need to look at you boot space too.

    Weight may be consideration for you, our;s was on the heavier/larger size but it was ok for both of us.

    The toddler seat was good, if you think you may have another child, you should think about how you will manage this.
    If the pram will not be used for long outings [ie just between the car and the shops etc] then your older child will probably be able to walk]
    When occupied, the toddler seat in the Valco did make it harder to steer but it was still manageable.
    You should never just use the toddler seat as it can make the pram top heavy/unstable and we always found it better to have the lightest child in the toddler seat.

    Overall we were very happy with the pram; at about the 3 year mark, after several Kms everyday and a year of 2 kids in transit, the aluminium frame cracked.
    The pram had proved a pretty solid workhorse so we decided to replace it with the same pram again and were able to score a nearly new one via a mothers group friend.

    As a closing side:
    I thorougly recommend some sort of pre-packed accessory/nappy bag to hang of the pram: ours had change mat, wipes, towels, spare clothes etc plus other compartments we used for food, bottles, favorite toys etc.
    If youve got this organised, youre always ready to go.
    [Having kids is all about redeveloping your organisation skills]

    Good luck with the birth and the whole process, its a wonderful experience...............and may your grinder be quiet enough to never wake your child.



  14. #14
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Stroller advice

    To me a baby lies in a pram and sits in a stroller.

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    Re: Stroller advice

    ... but what then do you call most of these 3 wheelers where the kid can either lie flat or sit upright? :-? Is a laptop a portable computer, a DVD player or a mobile phone? Too much multifunctioning to call anything anything these days! Heck we even have a tea spout on coffee machines - what next?!

  16. #16
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Stroller advice

    I still think they are a stroller.

    A good old fashioned pram only had one configuration (and 4 wheels).

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    Re: Stroller advice

    Congratulations Lovey!

    I cannot speak highly enough of the Mountain Buggy range! We bought a MB Breeze when we had our first as we wanted to be able to take it travelling in Europe. The Breeze is a lightweight model, that fits through all the supermarket aisles :) and is easy to collapse down to fit in the boot etc. The quality was fantastic and it survived heavy usage from both of our beautiful boys! :)

    We also purchased a Kathmandu baby backpack, and found that to be invaluable when going to places too crowded/not suited to prams. Particularly at the markets, our boys loved being up high where they could see what was going on around them and not be looking at a million peoples legs.

    Good luck with your shopping - its an exciting time as you prepare for the big day!
    Cheers, slowcoffee

  18. #18
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    Re: Stroller advice

    We had a Peg Perago pram. Very good from a weight perspective and a fold-up/storage, but only has the rigid type tyres, so is best suited for nice flat ground like shopping centres.

    We then got an Emmulunga (sp?) 2nd hand. Basically we grabbed it so the Mother-in-law had a pram in her car without having to do the swap when she was looking after the youngster.
    This has the big inflated tyres so is better for different terrain, but not as easy to steer.

    Currently using a Valco stroller which is super light and easy to travel with. Quite fond of this one.

    All of them have the ability to set the sitting position from upright all the way down to flat.

    It really comes down to what your main use will be. If you want to do the walks and later the jogs, a 3 wheeler with large tyres is probably the go.

    Our main criteria was weight. My wife suffers from arthritis, so it had to be something that she could fold up and lift into the car. Peg and Valco fit our requirements very well.

    Good luck, and I know what you mean about the cost.
    Man we spent a lot of money at Baby Bunting!

    One other thing, we bought a Boori paddington cot. It cost a bit, but it can be a cot, a single bed and finally a small sofa for your childs room, so I think its worth a look. Ive just converted our daughters cot into the single bed, so well see if she can stay in it ;-)

    Brett.


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    Re: Stroller advice

    I was a bit strapped or cash when our first came along so i spent about 200 dlrs on a three wheeler, and didnt have a a problem with it, if I was flush with money i would have probally brought the 5 - 600 one and would have waisted 400 dlrs, It just got drafted to the tip, kept the wheels for a billy cart. So i wouldnt nessacerily go by the price, the only thing i would say is get a pushable change table at a good hieght so your not bending to take care of the bussiness end. Its the only thing we brought that we couldnt have done with out, looks like ill be dusting it off soon too.

  20. #20
    Senior Member Stan's Avatar
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    Re: Stroller advice

    But can you make coffee with it?? :-/

    Congrats by the way on the pending addition to the family

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    Re: Stroller advice

    One suggestion. If you occasionally catch a bus, find a pram/stroller that is not too long otherwise its too hard to manoeuvre inside the bus. Also find one that collapses easily (is that two suggestions?).

  22. #22
    Senior Member Lovey's Avatar
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    Re: Stroller advice

    Gday all,
    I know this thread is getting on a bit, but I thought Id put up a quick post to firstly say thankyou to everyone that replied and gave their advice, and secondly, to show everyone what we ended up buying.
    Here it is, the new Lovey Jnr mobile, a Swallow Whisper (I believe that its a Babycos own brand), 3 wheeler, with cool spacey looking frame *;).
    Now to wait until Feb to fill it up *and take it for a test drive. 8-)



  23. #23
    Sleep is overrated Thundergod's Avatar
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    Re: Stroller advice

    Good month Feb.

  24. #24
    Senior Member Lovey's Avatar
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    Re: Stroller advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Thundergod link=1221416614/20#22 date=1224416619
    Good month Feb.
    Ill let you know when it rolls around ;D

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    Re: Stroller advice

    Hi there - weve got a Phil and Teds and its great, but i reckon any of the good solid prams are not much fun to get into and out of the car so weve also got a Maclaren stroller for car trips. I highly recommend this combo - you can even just get a cheap stroller from Target for the car.

    The P&T is one of the lightest prams out there and I still found it a hassle to pack up - also because you have to empty the parcel tray and - if youre like me - all the bits and pieces hanging off the hangles and across the sun shade.

    Hope that helps.

  26. #26
    Senior Member Lovey's Avatar
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    Re: Stroller advice

    Thanks Indigo,
    This one is fairly light, about 11kg and it packs up into a suprisingly small space (for a 3 wheeler battering ram ;D).
    Well probably end up getting a small stroller to take away with us on trips once the little one is old enough for it.

  27. #27
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    Re: Stroller advice

    The only advice I can give is to think about the normal terrain the stroller/pram will be used on. I live in the hills and our footpaths are nonexistant or really crappy. I destroyed the whels on a new strller in 6 months. The ancient steelcraft from the seventies coped very well with them.

  28. #28
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    Re: Stroller advice

    So you got the pram - next up is the feeding chair :)

    My wife and I were discussing feeding chairs the other day (our twins are 20months) and best advice we can give new parents is to go for the most basic model. Forget anything with a cussion insert - they look nice but within a month you will be sick of removing the insert to clean the cussion and will forfeit it.

    Also - chairs that recline and move up and down look cool, but thats a lot of nooks and crannies for food to accumulate.

    Seriously - look at it and ask yourself "if I was to turn a bowl of sauce onto this every day how easy will it be to clean"


  29. #29
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    Re: Stroller advice

    Quote Originally Posted by anthonyd link=1221416614/20#27 date=1226553632
    ... look at it and ask yourself "if I was to turn a bowl of sauce onto this every day how easy will it be to clean"
    ;D

    As the proud, & frequently exhausted, dad of twin 4yr old lads, Ill fully endorse anthonyds sentiments.

    Sum up the practicalities, & dont get sucked in by the looks (& the added $$$).

    Oh, and BTW, the feeding chairs will remain pretty clean ... its the mess on the floor around them thatll occupy your time ;)



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