You’ve got the bike, the baby, and the bike seat, but how do they go together? Don’t worry, this easy guide will have your baby bike seat installed in no time. Then, it’s off on an adventure you and your kiddo will never forget.
First, you’ll want to note whether you have a front or rear mounted seat as well as how the seat mounts to your bike. Rear type seats have both a frame and rack mount option available. Depending on what type of bike you have, and if you already have a bike rack attached to your bike a frame or rack mount may work better with your seat up.
Front Mount Baby Bike Seat
To mount a child bike seat on the front of your bike, you’ll first need to determine what type of handlebars you have. For the Hamax Observer, we offer two types of brackets. One, the Standard Mount, splits in two to secure around threaded headsets with at least 2 inches of vertical clearance. The second option, the A-Head Bracket, requires only 1/2 inch of clearance and is best for threadless headsets. The A-Head Bracket does require the removal of the handlebars. If you’re not mechanically inclined you’ll want to schedule an appointment at your local bike shop.
Once you’ve received the seat, remove it from the package and find mounting bracket you’ll be using. Make sure to align the mounting bracket with the handlebar and wheel so your baby can face forwards. We recommend placing the baby bike seat on the mount and sitting on the bike. You’ll want to make sure you are comfortable riding with the seat between your arms. Once you’ve found the perfect alignment, tighten down the screws on the mount to ensure it does not have any movement. If your seat has a locking mechanism like the Hamax Observer, make sure you lock the seat in place with the included keys.
Rear Frame Mount Baby Bike Seat
If you’ve purchased a frame mount baby bike seat, the first thing you’ll want to do after unpacking your item is attach the bracket to your bike frame. The brackets that come with the Hamax Caress have four easy bolts that you’ll remove to open up the bracket. Place the bracket on the bike frame with the Hamax logo facing the front. The Hamax bracket is specially designed to slide under brake cables and other gear wire that run down the bike frame. All you need to do is slide the rubber gaskets under any cables and attach the metal strips. Insert the four bolts and tighten down just enough so the bracket doesn’t slide on the bike frame easily. You’ll want to adjust the height of the bracket before tightening down the bolts any further.
To perfect the placement of the bracket on the bike frame, guide the metal carrier bow ends into the bracket until you hear a click. The clicking sound means that the carrier bow bars have locked into place in the fastening bracket. Next, measure from the rear wheel to the bottom of the Caress child bike seat. Ideally, you want between 10-12 cm of space to allow for the seat movement which provides the suspension for your child. Adjust the bracket until you are within the correct height distance*, and then tighten down the bolts of the fastening bracket. Make it a rule to check, and if needed, re-tighten the bracket before every bicycle ride.
*If you are not able to achieve the recommended 10-12 cm height above the tire, please contact Hamax USA. We have extra bars that will help you position the seat correctly.
Rear Rack Mount Baby Bike Seat
To install a rack mount baby bike seat you’ll want to have a rack pre-installed on your bike frame. Most bike racks are installed by bolting them to the threaded eyelets on the base of the seat stays and the braze-ons. Check to make sure that your rack is level before installing the bike seat. The Hamax Caress rack mount has an easy twist on and off mechanism which makes installation a breeze for parents of all skill levels. Just unlock the Carrier Adapter with the included keys, turn the knob counterclockwise to open the claws, and fit to your bike rack. Then turn the knob clockwise to tighten down the claws on the bike rack for a snug fit. You’ll want to position the Caress seat as close to the adult’s bike seat as possible while still leaving room for the seat to recline. By getting as close to the center of the bike as possible, you make the bike more stable while riding.
Whatever seat and mounting system you choose to use with your bike, we recommend that you practice getting on and off the bike a few times and riding around your neighborhood with the seat attached. This will give you a better idea of how the bike mechanics will function with added weight and how you can compensate through pedaling and steering. If you need any help with mounting your seat or have any questions the HamaxUSA customer service team is always happy to help. Give us a call at 877.252.4560 or email at [email protected]. We’ll do whatever we can to make sure you and your child have a great ride together!