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Frog 61

8
£515.00

VERDICT:

8
10
Awesome kid-friendly geometry and components paired to a high-quality frameset – it's a really fun ride
Lightweight build gives good manoeuvrability
Child-specific geometry
Good price for the build
Weight: 
9,300g

At road.cc every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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Everything about the Frog 61 is created for young cyclists from the geometry, the FrogFit gear shifters, easy-to-reach brake levers and the patented Frog crank arms. It's no wonder that it fitted our reviewers so well and left them with a riding experience that was massively confidence boosting and most importantly, fun.

One of the things that Frog focuses on is child-specific frame geometry – it's shaped to suit the physiology of children as they grow, rather than just being an adult's bike that's shrunk. That is what makes them so much fun to ride for kids.

2023 Frog 61 Riding 1.JPG

The Frog 61 is designed for 8-10-year-olds, with a recommended inside leg of 57cm to 74cm (the Hybrid range runs from the Frog 53 to the Frog 78, and overall covers ages five to 13+).

My son Charlie and my daughter Isla spent many hours each on the Frog 61, and enjoyed it immensely. In fact, they have had quite a busy time of it lately, reviewing Boardman's JNR hybrid bikes in 24in and 26in wheel sizes,  plus the 24in Vitus Energie 24 Kids CX.

2023 Frog 61 Riding 3.JPG

Actually, the most I got out of them about the Frog is that is had the most comfortable saddle and bar grips, but that's much the same kind of thing as when I ask, 'What did you do at school today?' every afternoon and get the reply: 'Nothing.' The way I look at it, if they're laughing and giggling, they're enjoying the bike. At nine and ten they don't care too much about geometry, compliance or lateral stiffness, but there was a lot of laughing and giggling.

They visibly had fun on it whether we were out on the back lanes for a ten-mile ride, meandering through the woods, or at the local park rolling over the pump track.

They both looked totally relaxed on it, and on technical parts (like the pump track) the geometry was obviously giving good balance and control to the rider. This was especially noticeable with the youngest, Isla, as she doesn't quite have the do-or-die bravado that Charlie has at times.

2023 Frog 61 Riding 2.JPG

The heavily sloped top tube gives a low stand over height should they need to put a foot down, while the long wheelbase brings a confident feeling of stability.

With its short stem the Frog 61 keeps its riders quite upright, and spreads their weight evenly across the bike. That's ideal, as my kids don't tend to move in the saddle whether they are climbing or descending. Being balanced in this way seems to keep the steering quite neutral, even with that short stem, so when trying out new terrain or picking up speed my test pilots remained unflustered and calm as they looked ahead.

With its lightly-treaded tyres the Frog is happy to be ridden off-road as well as on, and even on loose sections of gravel or mud the bike remained stable and easy to control.

2023 Frog 61 - front brake 2.jpg

At 9.3kg it's light too, especially as that's for the complete build you see here. That may sound heavy compared to an adult's bike, but the Frog 61 definitely doesn't feel it. My kids have ridden various cheap steel bicycle-shaped-objects over the years, and they really are heavy – and that has a big impact on a child's enjoyment. If they can hop a bike up and down a kerb it gives them a bit of freedom, and it's the same when riding in the woods. Things like tree roots and ruts are no longer a hindrance.

The key point about the Frog is that it just works from a riding point of view. As long as it suits the corresponding leg size of your child, it will fit them like a dream, and they'll get so much fun out of it.

Frame and fork

The Frog uses heat-treated 6061 grade aluminium alloy for the frame and fork, which is great to see for this kind of price, and finish it in a range of six colours. The paint is super tough and highly durable; exactly what you want on a bike that is going to find itself rubber side up on a regular basis.

2023 Frog 61 - head tube badge.jpg

It's designed for V-brakes, so the wheels are running standard quick releases for retention, and you get a good selection of mounting points for accessories like water bottles on the down tube or full mudguards front and rear (these are even included).

2023 Frog 61 - rear brake.jpg

You get a quick release seatclamp which helps adjustment mid-ride, and all of the cable routing runs externally for ease of fettling at home. It's actually quite a cool way to be able to show your child a bit of maintenance, too.

The bottom bracket is a standard threaded affair, and is a square taper design, which is again easy to swap with a few simple tools should the need arise.

2023 Frog 61 - bottom bracket.jpg

Spec

The Frog uses some mix-and-match kit designed to suit children's hands and body shape. The shifters are youth-specific for easy control over the two thumb shifters under the flat, 500mm wide aluminium handlebar.

2023 Frog 61 - thumb shifter.jpg

They run the eight-speed gears, which comprise an 11-32t cassette and a 32t chainring that's hidden behind a chain protector. Frog's website says the rear mech is Microshift, although the mech on our review bike was Shimano Altus.

2023 Frog 61 - rear mech.jpg

The groupset worked really well, with light shifting and a good spread of gears for little legs when it comes to climbing.

The brakes are from Tektro – linear-pull 837 AL model calipers with JL510 levers – and suit small hands. Even with just two fingers they will haul the bike up quickly and controllably.

The saddle is Frog's own, and as my kids said, it's very comfortable.

2023 Frog 61 - saddle.jpg

The wheels feature Quando sealed hubs and 24in aluminium rims, and are laced together with 28 spokes. The build was strong enough for plenty of abuse, and I had no problems with either the front or rear running out of true.

The tyres are Kenda K1047 in a 1.5in width. The slightly knobbly 'small block' tread rolls fine on the road and works offroad primarily on dry surfaces, although they work okay on softer surfaces too. Puncture resistance seems fine, and we didn't have any issues.

2023 Frog 61 - tyre and rim.jpg

Full mudguards are included, as are the pedals. In the accessories box you also get reflectors, paint plasters and frame protection stickers.

2023 Frog 61 - rear mudguard.jpg

Value

The price for the 61 is £515. That may sound expensive against kids' bikes you can pick up from the big stores, but unlike those the design here is bespoke, the quality is excellent and the resale value of the Frog stays high. It's also not the most expensive thing out there – the Vitus Energie 24 Kids CX mentioned above, for instance is £599.99.

However, Vitus also does the 24 Kids Bike with flat bars for £329.99, or a 24+ version with much larger tyres and a frame designed for trail riding for £409.99.

The 24in Boardman JNR is £380, while the 26in version is £420.

Overall

It's a bit pricier than many we've reviewed recently, but the all-round package is very good indeed. The design and components are very well thought out – the finished product is a bike that gives a child a lot of fun and confidence.

Verdict

Awesome kid-friendly geometry and components paired to a high-quality frameset – it's a really fun ride

If you're thinking of buying this product using a cashback deal why not use the road.cc Top Cashback page and get some top cashback while helping to support your favourite independent cycling website

road.cc test report

Make and model: Frog 61

Size tested: 24 inch wheel

About the bike

List the components used to build up the bike.

Front Hub: Quando, Aluminum, sealed hub, Quick Release, 28 hole

Rear Hub: Quando, Aluminum, sealed hub, Quick Release, 28 hole, Shimano type 8/9spd free hub body

Cassette/Free wheel: 8-speed, 11-32t

Rear Derailleur: Microshift (model M36S), 8-speed

Rim: Aluminium, 24", double wall, machined braking surface

Seat Clamp: Aluminum, Quick Release

Headset: Neco, 1"1/8 semi-integrated threadless, Frog Bikes top cap

Stem: Aluminum, 1"1/8, 50mm, 4 bolt clamp

Grips: Frog Bikes specific, lock on, slim grips

Gear Shifter: FrogFitTechnology® youth-specific 8-speed gear shifters with short lever travel and ultraslick gear cable

Brakes: Tektro 837 AL, Aluminum, linear pull

Tyres: Kenda K1047, 24"x1.5", Hybrid, (ETRTO/ISO: 38-507)

Mudguards: Full length, resin, black

Accessories box: Bell, bike reflectors white/red, wheel reflectors orange/white, paint plasters, frame protector patches

Crank set/Chainring: Frog Bikes Patented,127mm, Aluminum straight arm cranks, 32T chainring, black

Bottom Bracket: Thun Shorty-ML-SL; square taper, 68/108/107.5

Pedals: Frog Bikes, eco-friendly rice husk & plastic composite, w/reflectors, 9/16"

Chain: KMC, 8-speed

Handlebar: Aluminum, flat bar, 500mm

Brake Levers: Tektro JL510, Aluminum, easy reach

Saddle: Frog Bikes child-specific saddle (medium), steel rails

Tell us what the bike is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about the bike?

Frog says, "The 24-inch hybrid Frog 61 kids' bike is the ideal multi-purpose geared bike, suitable for 8-10-year-olds. This premium hybrid children's bike has a lightweight, sturdy aluminium frame, weighing 9.05kg making the bike easy to manoeuvre on roads, pavements, towpaths and forest trails. It comes with Kenda small block eight tyres for maximum stability and grip, full-length mudguards and the option to attach a pannier rack to the frame, for transporting school books and sports equipment.

"The Frog 61 kids' bike is equipped with age-specific components, including a quick-release child-specific saddle for the perfect riding position and FrogFit Technology® youth-specific 8-speed gear shifters with short lever travel and ultraslick cabling making changing gear and undulating rides a breeze. The bike also comes with Tektro brakes with small, easy-to-reach brake levers, which means better control and improved confidence for young riders. And, our patented Frog cranks, for more effortless pedalling, which reduces the distance between the pedals increasing efficiency and comfort for children.

"The Frog 61 is designed for longevity and has been optimised to help maximise the lifetime of the bike for a growing child. It offers a lower bracket position to ensure a safer more ergonomic riding experience, which also allows for a greater leg-length range to be accommodated, perfect for growing legs. And the handlebar height can be adjusted within a 40mm range, as a child grows - making it a great investment!"

With a flat bar and wideish tyres it is a versatile kid's bike that can be used on tarmac, or off road surfaces.

Where does this model sit in the range? Tell us briefly about the cheaper options and the more expensive options

There are a range of Frog hybrid bikes that cover ages from five to 13 years old.

Frame and fork

Overall rating for frame and fork
 
9/10

Tell us about the build quality and finish of the frame and fork?

Excellent quality throughout, and the paint quality will cope with crashes and general wear and tear well.

Tell us about the materials used in the frame and fork?

Both the frame and fork use 6061 aluminium alloy.

Tell us about the geometry of the frame and fork?

The frame and fork have been designed to specifically fit children's physiology.

Riding the bike

Was the bike comfortable to ride? Tell us how you felt about the ride quality.

The kids reckoned the saddle and bar grips were very comfortable indeed.

Did the bike feel stiff in the right places? Did any part of the bike feel too stiff or too flexible?

There don't seem to be any issues with stiffness anywhere on the frame.

How did the bike transfer power? Did it feel efficient?

The blend of a lightweight frame and fork, plus a good spread of gears, gives great efficiency.

Was there any toe-clip overlap with the front wheel? If so was it a problem?

No.

How would you describe the steering? Was it lively neutral or unresponsive? Neutral.

Tell us some more about the handling. How did the bike feel overall? Did it do particular things well or badly?

Even with the short stem the Frog doesn't look twitchy.

Which components had the most effect (good or bad) on the bike's comfort? would you recommend any changes?

Comfy saddle and nice spongy bar grips.

Which components had the most effect (good or bad) on the bike's efficiency? would you recommend any changes?

The bike is efficient thanks to a good spread of gears and the ability for small hands to change them quickly and easily.

Rate the bike for acceleration:
 
8/10
Rate the bike for high speed stability:
 
9/10
Rate the bike for cruising speed stability:
 
9/10
Rate the bike for low speed stability:
 
9/10
Rate the bike for flat cornering:
 
8/10
Rate the bike for cornering on descents:
 
8/10
Rate the bike for climbing:
 
8/10

The drivetrain

Rate the drivetrain for performance:
 
8/10
Rate the drivetrain for durability:
 
8/10
Rate the drivetrain for weight:
 
7/10

Tell us some more about the drivetrain. Anything you particularly did or didn't like? Any components which didn't work well together?

Some good quality components used throughout the drivetrain.

Wheels and tyres

Rate the wheels for performance:
 
8/10
Rate the wheels for durability:
 
8/10
Rate the wheels for weight:
 
7/10

Tell us some more about the wheels.Did they work well in the conditions you encountered? Would you change the wheels? If so what for?

These are solid wheels which stood up well to treatment from a typical 10 year old.

Rate the tyres for performance:
 
8/10
Rate the tyres for durability:
 
8/10
Rate the tyres for weight:
 
7/10

Tell us some more about the tyres. Did they work well in the conditions you encountered? Would you change the tyres? If so what for?

Good all-rounder tyres for use on hardpacked surfaces and general riding off-road.

Controls

Rate the controls for performance:
 
8/10
Rate the controls for durability:
 
8/10
Rate the controls for weight:
 
7/10
Rate the controls for comfort:
 
9/10

Tell us some more about the controls. Any particularly good or bad components? How would the controls work for larger or smaller riders?

The saddle and the bar grips were the highlights of the build according to my kids.

Your summary

Did you enjoy riding the bike? Yes

Would you consider buying the bike? Yes

Would you recommend the bike to a friend? Yes

How does the price compare to that of similar bikes in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

It's a bit pricier than many, such as the Boardman mentioned in the review, but you're getting the extra you're paying for in terms of quality, design and spec.

Rate the bike overall for value:
 
5/10

Use this box to explain your overall score

This is a high quality bike built with kids in mind, from the geometry of the frameset through to the components. It's easy to ride and boosts confidence, and overall value is good considering everything you are getting.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 44  Height: 180cm  Weight: 76kg

I usually ride: This month's test bike  My best bike is: B'Twin Ultra CF draped in the latest bling test components

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed,

As part of the tech team here at F-At Digital, senior product reviewer Stu spends the majority of his time writing in-depth reviews for road.cc, off-road.cc and ebiketips using the knowledge gained from testing over 1,500 pieces of kit (plus 100's of bikes) since starting out as a freelancer back in 2009. After first throwing his leg over a race bike back in 2000, Stu's ridden more than 170,000 miles on road, time-trial, track, and gravel bikes, and while he's put his racing days behind him, he still likes to smash the pedals rather than take things easy. With a background in design and engineering, he has an obsession with how things are developed and manufactured, has a borderline fetish for handbuilt metal frames and finds a rim braked road bike very aesthetically pleasing!

Add new comment

7 comments

Avatar
OnYerBike | 8 months ago
0 likes

"Microshift provides the rear mech"

Above a picture of a rear mech that quite clearly says "Shimano Altus" on it 

(To be fair, Frog's own website is also guilty - the Tech Spec do list a Microshift rear mech but the pictures appear to show the same Shimano Altus mech, although their pictures aren't as clear). 

Avatar
Flondrien | 8 months ago
0 likes

Look Mum, no Helmet!

Probably not the greatest of ideas to show kids riding bikes w/o helmets in 2023. I'm sure you have a reason for this...

Avatar
mark1a replied to Flondrien | 8 months ago
3 likes

.

 

Avatar
KentRider | 8 months ago
0 likes

The Frog 61 worked well for both my sons. Good fit and relatively low weight (compared with the vast majority of children's bike-shaped lumps of lead). It made cycling fun for them. Withstood plenty of abuse by my youngest, who liked to test his limits by making sure he exceeded them regularly.

The price took a bit of swallowing when I was making the decision to buy them, given the rate children are growing at that age, but I'm glad I did so. Their second-hand value was excellent, so the cost of owning them really wasn't much beyond that of a Halford's throw-away BSO.

The Go Outdoors bike pointed to by Dogless cetainly does look excellent. Wasn't aware of them - or likely they weren't available - at the time I bought the Frogs (this was 6 years ago), but I think I would have gone for it instead (lighter and cheaper).

Avatar
Dadams7378 | 8 months ago
0 likes

Orbea do a range of kids bikes that are much better value than Frog / Isla etc.  Less than £500 will get you a 24 inch wheeled bike with a 9 speed Shimano Deore groupset that has trigger shifters and disc brakes.  It has a quality aluminium frame, that is suspension adjusted, so a front suspension fork could be added if required.  the bikes we bought for our kids are more 'off road' focussed than this Frog bike, but they do models that are road / hybrid as well.  Alternatively, if you want a road bike, look at Kids Racing.  Great, kids specific geometry road frames that fit full size road wheels.  They also do kids specific bars, cranks, saddles etc.  I built up a bike for my 11 year old that is sub 7 kg with pedals.  Admittedly, it did cost a bit more than £515. 

Avatar
Pot00000000 | 8 months ago
0 likes

"This premium hybrid children's bike has a lightweight, sturdy aluminium frame, weighing 9.05kg"

 

That's bloody heavy for an adults bike, and ridiculous for a premium child's bike.

I know all kids bikes are heavy but it's really not necessary. I'm putting together a bike for my 8yo neice. The saddle and seatpost alone on the Apollo was 975g - FFS 🤦🏼‍♂️. 

 

Kids don't need full weight weenie build but come on.

 

Avatar
Dogless | 8 months ago
1 like

The absolute best kids' bikes are the go outdoors Wild range. Identical spec (probably same frame) to frog/Isla but half the price. Bought this size bike for my son last year for £230.

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