Child Bike Seat Mounted in Front by Ibert

When it comes to child seats on bikes, my opinion is the same. Typically, these seats are attached to the rear and the seat post is just as sturdy as the stem. This setup also ensures the seat won’t wobble from side-to-side like it would if it were attached to the stem.


Question:

My front-mounting child seat from iBert has been attached to my street bike before, as seen in the image below. However, the placement had to be so low due to the straight bars and shifter triggers that my knees would hit it while riding, making it unsuitable for use.

I obtained a cargo bike with extended tail and cruiser-style handlebars, intending to pair it with the iBert seat. However, the stem lacks the necessary 3/4″ straight length between the frame and handlebars for mounting the T-bar post as specified on the manufacturer’s website.

manufacturer instructions

As the seat post is adjustable, I considered mounting the seat at the back. Typically, child seats are rear-mounted, and the seat post appears to be as sturdy as the stem. Furthermore, when attached to the stem, the seat tends to move from side-to-side, which is not the case in this arrangement.

Despite my efforts to find any explicit prohibition or warning on the manufacturer’s website, I could not locate any. I have reached out to them via email, but their response only mentioned that they have been acquired by another company and asked for my patience during the transition. Unfortunately, they did not address my inquiry regarding the mounting locations. Additionally, I have not found any information online that clarifies whether mounting the seat in this manner is a reasonable “hack”. The mounting bar is a straightforward assembly with two bolts that I am confident I can attach to the seat post, positioned high enough to clear the rear rack. However, what remains uncertain is:

  • Could the bike be harmed?
  • Are there any indications that this might pose a risk to my passenger’s safety?

Uncertainty lingers within me regarding the potential hindrance the seat’s legs might cause for the rider ahead. If both passenger and bike remain unharmed, I can personally evaluate this concern.

The bicycle has a durable dual-leg kickstand that ensures both wheels remain on level ground when engaged, providing stability for loading and unloading.


Solution:

The website’s suggestion of placing the child’s legs forward would not work as it could cause issues. To test this, you can try riding without the child after fitting the seat, without clamping it too tightly. Additionally, the headrest may slump forward and cause discomfort in your lower back, affecting your position on the saddle and making it difficult to control the bike with the added weight up high.

The front-mount seat has greater support than most, but typically, it’s intended for you to embrace your child with your arms and your back positioned behind them. However, this particular seat has a particularly low back. If your child falls asleep behind you, they’ll flail about, and you won’t be aware (although this can occur even on larger rear seats; at least in that case, their head won’t flop backward when driving over a bump).

The majority of individuals who use front mount seats tend to ride with their knees spread out to avoid the seat, despite it being wider than most road seats. It appears that only certain bike/rider/condition combinations are ideal for front seats to work effectively. These conditions include having a small frame adjustment, using wide bars, and riding on flat terrain where minimal effort is required to speed up.

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