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BOB IRONMAN Review

Review Overview

BOB IRONMAN Review
Expert Reviewer
143 Reviews
Reviewed On: 08 Dec 2014
Helen Taylor
Expert Reviewer
Helen's Verdict:
4.5 / 5

BOB began 17 years ago with a strong ethos that still continues today. ‘Commit to quality and the rest falls into place. Don't rush to be the first, innovate to be the best.' The BOB IRONMAN is suitable for use when skating or running; this BOB is born to run.

Review Summary

Summary

Overall, I think the BOB IRONMAN is a great pushchair. It really looks the part, sleek and sporty in design with the features to back up its appearance. If you are looking for a stylish functional pushchair that you can run, jog or skate with, you really do need to check the IRONMAN out!

What’s good
  • Adjustable all round suspension
  • Light weight
  • Great size canopy
What’s not so good
  • Fussy strap recline
  • No raincover included

Review Content

BOB IRONMAN Review
Chassis

When unpacking your BOB IRONMAN, you'd be forgiven for breaking out in a nervous sweat, however there really is no need. There is a little assembly to do but, it is all straightforward. It certainly looks more daunting than it is.

Both rear wheels are stored in the bottom of the box and the front wheel is neatly tucked inside the folded pushchair.

To start, you need to unfold the chassis and then go on to complete the rest of the assembly.

The instruction manual advises that you read it in full prior to installing the wheels. This is to make sure that installation is done correctly due to the forces that are exerted when running and skating. Once you've read the manual, you can install the wheels.

When fitting the front wheel, you can adjust the angle of it to ensure that the pushchair tracks straight when running. This is simple to do and clearly indicated in the instructions.

Made from high-grade aluminium, the chassis is strong and durable. Matt grey in colour, with its large wheels the BOB IRONMAN is lovely to look at. The curvature of the frame is reminiscent of a quality bicycle chassis.

Chassis3_500

At 101cm high the handle bar is in a set position and height and is made from hardwearing dense foam that feels strong and shouldn't dent or nick like some can. Attached to the handle bar is a high quality, polyester fabric webbing wrist strap. This is an extra safety measure to stop the pushchair running away from you, especially whilst jogging or skating. It is also used to secure the pushchair when folded.

Your little one will have a nice smooth ride thanks to three aluminium alloy pneumatic 16" x 1.5" semi-slick tyres with Schrader valves. The suspension is a coil spring with elastomer core shock absorbers that provide 7.5 cm of wheel travel. In addition the adjustable shock absorbers allow you to fine-tune the suspension to suit you and your child.

Suspension_500

When it comes to the shopping basket you won't be disappointed. The basket is W 34cm x L 37cm x D 16cm and will carry a maximum of 4 kg. It's more than adequate for a changing bag or a picnic bag for those country walks.

Coming with not one but two brakes, stopping won't be a problem. When running or skating there is a hand brake. Located in the centre of the handle bar, it provides stopping assistance in the same way a bicycle brake does. To apply it you simply squeeze the handle, it is tough so you do need to squeeze it quite hard to get the full effect. You can adjust the tension and the brake sensitivity should you need to. Just follow step-by-step instructions in the manual.

There is also a parking brake. To apply this use your foot to push the bar located just above the rear axle down. It will snap into position and will hold the pushchair firmly. When you are ready to move again use the front of your foot to push the bar back up again.

Hand_brake_500
Seat

When it comes to the canopy, it is a great size offering 125° range of coverage. You can adjust the position from closed, semi-open and fully open easily by pushing it forwards. The hood mechanism is nice and quiet both to open and close so shouldn't disturb a sleeping toddler.

There is a 55 cm² clear viewing window in the top of the hood so you can keep an eye on your little one although I wish it wasn't Velcro opening as it is quite noisy.

Viewing_window_500

I really liked the reflectors on the canopy, these are an excellent safety feature, especially if you are out in the evening during the winter.

There is a flap on the back of the canopy that attaches to the back of the seat with Velcro, this seals the canopy to the pushchair and offers excellent protection from the elements, especially on a windy day. It also serves to offer good ventilation as you can peel it back on a warm day.

Made from Poly and Dobby weave fabrics the seat material has a water repellent coating, which offers extra protection from spillages. All the fabrics can be wiped clean with water and a mild soap should you need to.

When it comes to the seat, it is huge. 37cm wide, which is more than adequate for a little one and their favourite toy, the seat depth is 22cm and the height is a very respectable 50cm so should last until 3 years old or 17kg without a problem. It feels lovely and comfortable too thanks to the open cell foam padding in the bottom and back of the seat.

Seat_500h

There is some handy extra storage thanks to two mesh nets on the inside of the seat, which are great for holding a drink, snack and a toy.

A padded 5-point harness will hold your wiggling toddler in place. The shoulder straps clip into the crotch buckle as expected with this type of harness. All of the straps can be adjusted to ensure the perfect fit and there are D rings on the harness so you can attach your child's favourite toy or an additional harness should you need it. 

Harness_500

I really like the way you adjust the shoulder strap height. Just slide the buckle up or down the stitched in strap on the back of the seat until you find the perfect position for your little one.

Moving to 70° from vertical, the seat offers a good range of recline and is usable from 6 months old. The lowest position is perfect for an afternoon nap. To recline the seat you use the straps located on either side of the back of the seat. Simply pull the back of the buckle upwards to release the strap to you preferred position. You need to do this on one side, and then the other.

ST1006_BK_500

When you want to sit the seat back up again you will need both hands. Push the seat upwards with one hand and pull the strap buckle downwards with the other hand. Now repeat on the other side.

There is additional storage on the back of the seat thanks to a large mesh pocket. This can carry a maximum of 1kg and is perfect for items you want easy access to, or items that could fall out of the basket.

Fold

When you need to fold the BOB IRONMAN you first need to apply the parking brake. Pushing the bar located just above the rear axle down does this.

Just under both sides of the handle bar are black release levers. Squeeze these in simultaneously and then push the handle bar forwards until the pushchair folds in half. Now tug hard on the frame release handle. The handle is red and is positioned just under the seat. Lift the handle upwards keeping the tyres on the floor. The pushchair will then collapse flat.  Now lay the pushchair on the floor and secure using the wrist strap. This clips onto the bottom of the frame into the matching red buckle.

By removing the wheels you can make the folded pushchair even smaller. When folded with the wheels attached it is L 105cm x H 46cm. By removing the wheels the measurements become L 89cm x H 34cm, which may make things a little easier if you need to get it into a small car for example.

When you are ready to use the BOB IRONMAN again unclip the wrist strap to release the frame. Now lift the frame release handle behind the seat. Keeping the wheels on the floor lift until the frame snaps into position. Finally pull the handlebar up and backwards until it all clicks into place. You are now ready for your next journey.

Conclusion

I like the BOB IRONMAN, it is a real trendsetter. Made for active outdoor families who want the ability to run or skate with their children whatever the landscape.

Super large wheels and adjustable suspension ensures a smooth ride for your passenger and thanks to the tracking adjustment you can ensure you keep rolling in a straight line. The canopy is a great size and protects from the elements and the frame is lightweight and strong. But, it's not all about the features as the BOB IRONMAN is great to look at too.

There are a few grumbles. I found both the recline and moving the seat back up again to be challenging, especially with an uncooperative toddler who just wanted to push backwards.

The handle height is a little high for me as I am 5"1 but I think it would suit most parents. I would have preferred the viewing window to not be a noisy Velcro type but I did like the size of the window. I was also disappointed that a raincover was not included, especially as this is specifically a pushchair for extreme outdoor use.

Overall, I think the BOB IRONMAN is a great pushchair. It really looks the part, sleek and sporty in design with the features to back up its appearance. If you are looking for a stylish functional pushchair that you can run, jog or skate with, you really do need to check the IRONMAN out!


 

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