We recently got our daughter a Smart Trike Vanilla 4-in-1 Tricycle for her first birthday from the Early Learning Centre. Four years ago we got a Smart Trike 3-in-1 Trike for our Son’s First Birthday and as he loved it we bought another one.
We knew Rosie would love it as Charlie loved his. It didn’t get used all that much as a trike – he struggled with the pedals – but as a push along it was used loads.
There is also a very practical reason to get a Smart Trike, they are fun for the children of course, but they are also great for the parents too, way more fun than a push-chair.
Smart Trike Vanilla 4-in-1 Tricycle Building It
Ordering on ELC was as you would expect from such a good shop, very slick and easy and our Smart Trike turned up in a surprisingly small box. I had to open up the plastic wrapping because I was convinced it was the wrong thing.
But no, it was the right one, I whisked it away to our new hiding place for presents, the shed, not that a one year old could perceive that it was 1. a present and 2. for her. More just out of a inbuilt parental code of “thou shalt hide presents away” and pretend that the Easter Santa Father Bunny Fairy or some other mythical beast was responsible for it….
Anyway a few nights before our little Girl Rosie’s first birthday I got the Smart Trike Vanilla 4-in-1 Tricycle out of its box and started construction.
I have to say, I have to doff my cap to Smart Trike because they have seriously spent some time in working out how to super pack this thing into the box, you couldn’t have fitted a mouse in there (well all right you probably could have).
I got all the bits out of the box then realised I needed to tool up. Why is it you always forget to keep one of your million tools handily in the house ready for opportunities like this. I wasn’t about to go down the bottom of the garden in the dark and cold and rain, so I had to use my fatherly intuition and my superior problem solving skills to build this beast.
Like a cave man trying to work out how to cut his meat (just like this…JUST) I roamed the house and came triumphantly down the stairs clutching a swiss army knife OF POWER!
Ready and tooled up to the max I began construction.
Personally and I really am trying not to sound too big headed here, it was relatively straight forward. I suppose I have past experience of building one of these Smart Tikes so that of course helped, but the instructions although simple, told you all you needed to know, its only your brain that over complicates things as you build something like this.
As I stood proudly back and admired my handy work, like a master craftsman who had just spent 100 hours on a fine chair or some other crafty project, I surveyed my work with pride shedding a small tear that my project was over…
I lovingly grasped the handle, resplendent in it hues of BRIGHT GREEN and pushed it around the room and as many Dads will no doubt do when building this say, “what, this is not right…”. I was definitely expecting a more firm movement in the steering and to be honest I thought I’d done something wrong.
At this point my wife interjected and had a go herself. “Don’t be daft” she said “it works perfectly”. I guess I found out that the Touch Steering really is as simple as that, you do just need to caress the handle and it just works. It’s not like the old one at all, you used to have to really turn that one, this is really easy and responsive.
Our Extreme Smart Trike Vanilla 4-in-1 Tricycle Trip
Rosie seemed very happy with her new Trike and has been plonked in it a good few times as we had ventured out in the soggy October weather on the school run, which I have to be honest here, is not a massive journey as our house backs onto the school field!
So this trike needed breaking in and testing out. The perfect opportunity presented itself yesterday. My wife is a Teacher, but her holidays, irritatingly, don’t correspond with the school Charlie goes to, so I’ve been superdupadad this week (as opposed to my normal function mode of Superdad) and have had both the children for most of the week.
I was becoming stir crazy after two days of wet weather and a moaning boy who voiced his displeasure every time I suggested going for a walk. So although it was verging on shipping forecast scale wind, we ventured out into the wild.
One of the reasons we chose the Smart Trike Vanilla 4-in-1 Tricycle over all the other types of trikes out these was that they had addressed ( we hoped ) the one irritating thing we found with the original 3-in-1 Smart Trike, the noisy wheels.
After reading a few reviews I was fairly sure that the advertised Double injection wheels for comfort had to be better. Are they better? Well yes they are but they are still not as good as I would like, but then if they were to put bike type wheels on with proper rubber tyres then the price would no doubt go up. The ride would be sweet though and the noise of the wheels on the pavement/road would be massively reduced.
It is definitely quieter than the last one, there is no doubt about it, but not 100% perfect.
So across the football pitches we ventured, over the fence, now that’s something that’s not fun. There is a gate but it’s impossible to fit anything bigger or less bendy than a person through it, so until our local council sorts it out, I had to man handle Rosie and her bike over the field gate. This is not a task I would recommend. I’ve had to do this with the pushchair and that isn’t fun either.
Anyway we managed to get over unscathed into what we affectionately call the “Sheep Poo Field” because it often has sheep in it and they have a tendency to poo all over the place. Thankfully the farmer has had some electric fence for his birthday or something so said sheep are now confined to half of the field. This though creates a degree of minor panic in all but the most hardened parents out there, because now rather than, “watch out for that poo” its “Charlie’ Don’t Walk So Close To The Fence, It Will Hurt A LOT!” constantly across the field.
Thankfully we managed to traverse the Sheep Poo Field without the Rutland Air Ambulance being scrambled and reached the Iron Bridge for a bit of Pooh Sticks fun.
Rosie was a bit bemused here, I’m sure she will get it in a few years but Charlie was loving it. Pooh Sticks never gets old and it is in the “Bridge” rule book isn’t it?
Rule 234 from the best selling book “Bridge Traversing with children”, states:
As a Parent you are not allowed to cross a bridge without attempting to play Pooh Sticks with any child who is less than 10 years of age.
A £4000 penalty is in effect for serious repeat offenders.
After we abided with the law, we took a wild diversion from our normal route round the village and decided to take a right into the dark unknown of the “NEXT” village. It’s a road we don’t take much due to having to go on a windy country road, but today that was where we ventured.
After a brief history lesson at the site of the old local train station, which is now just a gate and pile of vegetation, which took a lot of imagination for Charlie to get what I was on about, we headed off down the road along the winding windy river.
Rather than take the easy route after going over the humpback bridge a kind of wild madness took over me and Charlie when we came across a public footpath sign that points right through a farmers field. We could see other intrepid explorers had venture forth across the vast expanse of one inch unknown crops, but it really was uncharted territory for us.
I put it down to our reckless male nature. We got about a quarter of the way across the field and Charlie said “Daddy this was not a good idea, we should go back”.
“Nonsense” I said with the confidence of a million Dads fortifying my resolve. “We have started, so we are committed now, let’s do this”
I have to admit it, I’m not that much of an proud idiot to admit that by halfway I was beginning to doubt that my earlier confident statement was wise. It had been said in the kind of way “Daddy Pig” would have tackled the situation. If you have watched Peppa Pig, you know what I mean.
Daddy Pig is the role model of all fatherhood.
By three quarters of the way across the wheels were so clogged up with actual real sticky mud they were beginning to resemble tractor tyres. I had to resort to a clever tilting action which was, in effect a sort extreme wheelie action, to help reach the relative safety of the gate at the other side of the field of sinkage.
You would have thought that that was the end of it but no.
I then had to pick up Rosie, the Extreme Smart Trike Vanilla, eight combined inches of Mud and hoik it all over the fence. Of course Charlie thought this was all massively amusing; I was in a world of self induced muddy torment. Adding to the effort it took to lift her over was the fact I also had at least two and a half inches of mud caked to the soles of each boot.
The trama. (I know, very much a “First world Trama”)
When we got back home after our adventure, the Smart Trike was banished to the back garden, it normal lives in the porch. It’s still there, glaring at me though the patio doors, covered in mud, willing me to clean it every time I walk past to make a cuppa. I expect I will have to at some point. Speaking of cleaning, it was a good job I ironed a fresh pair of jeans before going on that walk; that was worth the effort!
I also have to apologize to the farmer for adding to the destruction of a strip of about one to two feet wide of his crops.
Extreme Smart Trike Vanilla 4-in-1 Tricycle Review Conclusion
So I Suppose this is the point in the article where I tell you what I really think of the Smart Trike. Well I have to say I’m impressed with how the product has developed over the years. They have definitely listened to customers and changed things to solve problems. The wheels are better but not perfect, but then as I said they will only be perfect for me if they are proper pumped rubber wheels.
The new edition where you can make the front wheel and the handle bars not attached is a godsend. That used to drive me up the wall! Giving a toddler the choice of where he or she is going is all well and good, but flipping heck it gets down right irritating as they happily drive into wall after wall making it take ten time longer to get where you are going.
Now Rosie can think she is in charge of where we are going, but in reality, it’s me in control, as it should be! mmwwhhhaarr!
The seat belts are much better than the old one, but the erm whats it called, the lunch box type thing attached to the back isn’t as good for bunging lunch boxes and book bags as the last one was, due to the lid. I fully expect Rosie to love putting stones, twigs and things in it in a year or so.
Would I recommend one of these for your Son or Daughter? Definitely, so far it’s great!
If you would like to get one of these yourself then it would be great if you went through one of my links, then I get a few quid in commission for referring you. Click the link to my price Comparison page to see the best UK prices for this version of the Smart Trike.
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