Stroller buying, what to look for? - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-20-2010, 08:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm going to be looking for a stroller for my LO, who's a newborn. I am wondering if there is anything safety wise to be watchful for or any resources online that rate safety for strollers? That is beyond the recalls of course!

Or do you have some recommendations for me? I need something that will be comfortable for a tall person (6 feet) and doesn't use the infant car seat (as those are horrible for baby's spinal health and I want her in that thing as little as possible). I've been eyeing the Kolcraft Contours Options 3 Wheeler.

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Old 02-21-2010, 03:00 AM
 
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If I could go back and do it again, the one thing I would get would be a stroller where she could face me instead of just facing out. I know graco just came out with a new one like this that is reasonably priced.

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Old 02-21-2010, 07:42 AM
 
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If you walk a lot, don't skimp on the stroller. The bugaboos are really good, worth the money if walking/public transport is your main form of transportation. The bee is great if you're going to be doing a lot of buses and trains as it's very light.

A good stroller is: fairly light, can be pushed with one hand, faces both ways, lies flat for an infant or comes with a basinet, has a decent storage basket or lets you hang stuff off the handle, pushes smoothly. Check the size and easiness of the fold too--if you are going to need to fold it often (car or bus) make sure you like it.

Most strollers have adapters for an infant bucket anyway--don't discount the convenience of popping the bucket into the stroller for a quick errand, especially if baby is sleeping.

Seriously, if you walk, save up or something and get something really good. Think of it as your car--even a really expensive stroller does not cost as much as a car.

If you mostly drive, go for something like a maclaren techno xt (great sturdy stroller, good for tall people, will last through toddlerhood, folds up small) and invest in slings instead. Slings are great for a more suburban/driving lifestyle as you don't necessarily need to carry all your gear with you everywhere--on the odd occasions you do want the stroller, you'll probably end up using it to carry your stuff more than the baby! Grocery shopping, library, mall--a sling is all you need.

Hope that helps!
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Old 02-21-2010, 08:48 AM
 
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if you use public transport a lot, I would priortise a lightweight, easily foldable stroller. I can carry my daughter in her Maclaren up & down stairs by myself if necessary, & I can fold it up if we are on a crowded bus. Friend with a Phil & Ted's can't carry it up & down stairs because it is too heavy, & Bugaboos are too wide to fit down the aisle of some of our city buses.

If you drive most places, I would LOVE to have a stroller in which baby could face me. But they are never good folders.
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Old 02-21-2010, 01:22 PM
 
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It's helpful to know why you want a stroller and the situation you will be using it. Do you need it to fit on public transportation, like some people have asked? Do you do alot of city walking? I'm out in the country and on a dirt road, so for us, it was critical to have something that could "off road" we went with a BOB Revolution. It doesn't face forward, and isn't appropriate for newborns, so we will use the carrier for the first 6 months+ My only regret is that we didn't buy the stroller when DD was a baby!! We love, love, love it. Never in a million years did I think I would spend that kind of money on a stroller, but it is fabulous I've seen awesome deals on pricey strollers on Craigslist, so it's worth checking out! Have fun shopping

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Old 02-21-2010, 07:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't have a car, I live in the city. I do take public transport a fair bit but I think it's easier to just use of moby for bus rids and stroller for taking the train as I won't have to collapse it.

Mostly I do considerable amount walking and know that it would be useful to have a stroller for the fifteen minute walk to the grocery store where I'll have some loot to bring back with me or in and out of shops where it would be nice to have both arms and full mobility. So I'll be using it for city sidewalks and streets. I had a massive pp hemorrhage and it will be a few months before I have the stamina walking that I did because of the 20 liter blood transfusion I had, so I am accepting that I might not have the strength to sling her as much as I would like.

I assumed the bugaboo strollers where nice but mostly a status stroller, but I'll look into them further. There seem to be few strollers that recline fully for newborns but the
Contours Options 3 Wheeler II Stroller seems to have all the features that I would want and it's $129 on pre-order from Target.

I really don't want my LO in the car seat while strolling, she doesn't find it comfortable, and it's not good to place that kind of strain on her developing spine to be forced into that position any longer than necessary. Beyond that it doesn't add any added convenience to my lifestyle, the Chico Keyfit 30 is freakish heavy and it's easier to just leave that sucker in my apartment instead of lugging it up and down my entry flight of stairs.

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Old 02-22-2010, 01:35 AM
 
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here is the reversible graco stroller
http://www.gracobaby.com/Products/Pa...ductID=1763442

Mom to Morgan 4-3-06 and announcing Baby Kelsey 4-11-10
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Old 02-22-2010, 07:59 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by basje View Post
I don't have a car, I live in the city. I do take public transport a fair bit but I think it's easier to just use of moby for bus rids and stroller for taking the train as I won't have to collapse it.
I do agree, but I think it depends a bit whether you plan on buying another stroller or whether you hope to have a one stroller all situations all ages scenario... I can no longer carry my 20 month old for more than an hour, so we always take the stroller on public transport. It's the same stroller we bought at birth (well, were gifted at birth), a Maclaren. While it is fully reclinable we never used it until she was bigger...
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Old 02-22-2010, 01:19 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by basje View Post
I don't have a car, I live in the city. I do take public transport a fair bit but I think it's easier to just use of moby for bus rids and stroller for taking the train as I won't have to collapse it.

Mostly I do considerable amount walking and know that it would be useful to have a stroller for the fifteen minute walk to the grocery store where I'll have some loot to bring back with me or in and out of shops where it would be nice to have both arms and full mobility. So I'll be using it for city sidewalks and streets. I had a massive pp hemorrhage and it will be a few months before I have the stamina walking that I did because of the 20 liter blood transfusion I had, so I am accepting that I might not have the strength to sling her as much as I would like.

I assumed the bugaboo strollers where nice but mostly a status stroller, but I'll look into them further. There seem to be few strollers that recline fully for newborns but the
Contours Options 3 Wheeler II Stroller seems to have all the features that I would want and it's $129 on pre-order from Target.

I really don't want my LO in the car seat while strolling, she doesn't find it comfortable, and it's not good to place that kind of strain on her developing spine to be forced into that position any longer than necessary. Beyond that it doesn't add any added convenience to my lifestyle, the Chico Keyfit 30 is freakish heavy and it's easier to just leave that sucker in my apartment instead of lugging it up and down my entry flight of stairs.
That Contours stroller is going to be pretty heavy and unwieldy too. Don't buy something you haven't seen and hefted--is there a stroller emporium type store near you? Buy Buy Baby or something? Since you don't have a car, it will definitely be worthwhile to get something good, you won't believe how much use you get out of it. Have a look at the bugaboo bee if you can, is the perfect city stroller IMO.

Slinging is great but it's also good fun to have your DC in a stroller facing you, you can have a chat and point out all the cats & dogs & squirells on the way. And a wonderful side benefit of strollers is that babies like to sleep in them, so you can leave the house at nap time, walk to your favorite cafe, meet a friend and have a coffee and muffin and a chat while DC has a lovely nap. Fresh air for both of you, exercise and recharge time for you--can't go wrong really.
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Old 02-26-2010, 03:59 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by basje View Post
I'm going to be looking for a stroller for my LO, who's a newborn. I am wondering if there is anything safety wise to be watchful for or any resources online that rate safety for strollers? That is beyond the recalls of course!

Or do you have some recommendations for me? I need something that will be comfortable for a tall person (6 feet) and doesn't use the infant car seat (as those are horrible for baby's spinal health and I want her in that thing as little as possible). I've been eyeing the Kolcraft Contours Options 3 Wheeler.
OP, I have the Kolcraft Contours Options 4 Wheel stroller--the reversible feature is Wonderful. I used it with DD from birth (she's 12 mos now) and have been VERY happy with it. I'm not sure whether the 4 wheeler is available anymore, but here's my take:

Pros: Fully reclines for newborn. I bought an extra body support for DD when she was tiny (6lb 13oz at birth) and it worked great. Cup holder/front tray are removable--didn't use until she got older. Sun shade is nice and big. Steers easily and is plenty tall enough for Huz to push it (he's 6'0''). Adjusts to sit waaaay up for older child. Easy to reverse seat. Easy to fold up once you get the hang of it. Good storage underneath.

Cons: Will not fold with seat in reverse position. Once you get the hang of folding it, its not hard but the thing is heavy. Not sure whether the graco reversible would be lighter (probably not). Only comes in Red and Blue, i think. Despite its appearance, this is not an "all terrain" stroller. The tires are made for asphalt and concrete, not gravel, compacted sand, or grass. With moderate use, I don't anticipate it lasting longer than one child. I think it will get DD through her stroller-using years but don't expect to be able to use it for any subsequent children. You get what you pay for in terms of quality, I guess.

Overall, I am really happy with it and am glad I didn't waste the money on a Bugaboo or comparable.

They do have a baby bucket attachement for the stroller that you can buy for like $14 if there are times when you need to take a car seat with you. I would warn that it is possible to give yourself a nasty pinch with the handle if you aren't mindful of where your hands are when you fold it up. But I think that's probably the case with all strollers.

If you happen to be in Austin, TX, you're welcome to play with mine. I'd also be happy to take photos of it or get on my scale with it to weigh it for you. PM me if you have other questions.

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Old 02-27-2010, 10:47 AM
 
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I also do not have a car and use public transport frequently. This has worked extremely well for our family: Uppababy Vista for all shopping trips. At the time, it had the biggest basket available, includes a bassinet, the seat faces both forwards and backwards (although for 18 months I've only ever had him face me), and rolls smoothly over our rough city streets and recently, massive snowbanks. The engineering is not as slick as the bugaboo (from a design perspective its a little chunky) but is hundreds less. . . For the bus/subway/etc, the moby was great for a while (I miss it, actually), but upgrading to the Ergo has extended our carrying time. I'm small, but can easily carry my 22 pounder, and hope to get to 27 pounds this way. For us, the realistic next step will be to get the lightest umbrella stroller (Uppababy has one comparable to the Macclarens, but a hair lighter that I have my eye on) for future public transport trips. When researching strollers early on, I found that no one model was going to meet all of our needs, so decided that a big one early and a small one later would be reasonable--its not that extravagant when you don't have a car!
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Old 02-27-2010, 01:35 PM
 
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What I would want in your situation is something with a great recline and great steering with good sized wheels for the long walks and the hills in the Bay Area. I would NOT go cheap unless the stroller was going to be used mostly indoors. I would want something I could push with one hand easily b/c the baby will end up in a sling with the seat filled up with groceries pretty often

You might look at this website
www.letsgostrolling.com b/c they separate out their strollers by use. I ordered from them and they are great. They will even give you free advice about what might work best for you.

In fact, here is the page for their "Urban Walking Strollers"
http://www.letsgostrolling.com/urban...rs-single.html

I have a Mountain Buggy that I use for outdoor walks (bumpy trails) and I LOVE it.

Mom to a 6 year old, a 3 year old, and a cuddly little newborn
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Old 02-27-2010, 05:54 PM
 
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I assumed the bugaboo strollers where nice but mostly a status stroller, but I'll look into them further.
I can bring my bugaboo next time I come by so you can try it out. I also can keep an eye out at the consignment shop I got it at for a good one - they had 4 or 5 strollers last time I was there... mostly jogging though.

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Old 02-27-2010, 06:09 PM
 
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I'm a big fan of Zoopers, especially the 3 wheel versions, but they're not really great for meandering through stores and malls (although I have seen them used in both). They are really awesome strollers for rough and smooth terrain though, and if you do a great deal of walking, they're really made well.


They don't tend to be light and while easy enough to collapse, you do need more than one hand to do so.

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Old 02-27-2010, 06:10 PM
 
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Oh and B.O.B. revolutions are awesome too!

Mama to Thing 1 and Thing 2.
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Old 02-28-2010, 03:23 AM
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We tested a BOB Revolution, and really loved it, but chose the Bugaboo Bee because it was much lighter than the BOB and thus easier to carry up the stairs to our apartment.

We have been very happy with the Bee. It has survived heavy use outdoors, as well as extensive air travel. The basket is roomy and we use it for grocery shopping often. Customer service is great and they have a two year warranty.

They didn't have the Uppa Baby Vista when we were stroller shopping, but we might have considered that too -- it looks like a great city stroller.
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Old 03-01-2010, 03:03 PM
 
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The bugaboo bee looks really cool! The only feature that concerns me are the wheels. They're umbrella stroller wheels. Now, if you use it primarily indoors or on city sidewalks in a moderate climate, it's probably not an issue. When chooseing a stroller for myself, I have to be concerned with snow and ice and rough, uneven terrain. Those wheels wouldn't work for me personally.

Mama to Thing 1 and Thing 2.
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Old 03-01-2010, 03:09 PM
 
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I have an old peg perago veniza (30 dollars off of craigslist). We do have a car, and we live in the suburbs, and use it for mall trips and going to the park.

We love the full recline/basinett with boot, and the reversible handle. I see them for less than 100 dollars on craigslist all the time.

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Old 03-03-2010, 09:18 AM
 
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It may not seem like a safety issue but I think it is: make sure your baby faces you. When they're teeny tiny you want to make sure they're not suffocating, too cold, too hot, getting sunburned, spitting up...
And then also a recent study came put that said babies who faced mom in the stroller might be more advanced: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/02/opinion/02zeedyk.html
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