Product Type: OBaby prams, pushchairs and strollers
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OBaby Atlas - O-Dear...
OBaby Atlas Stroller
Member Name: sas87
OBaby Atlas Stroller
Advantages: Lays totally flat, great raincover, affordable
Disadvantages: Heavy, hard work to push/steer, poor wheels, difficult to fold
I had to get an OBaby Atlas as an emergency "cheap" buggy, as the new pushchair I'd ordered was delayed and I'd sold my beloved pram to make way for it, leaving me stuck! I went to the first place I could think of - Argos (see my Argos review, a great shop in these situations!). As it happened they had some promotions on pushchairs at the time, and the OBaby Atlas was available for only £49.99, so I decided to go for it as it had some good reviews.
Let me begin by saying that the OBaby Atlas is the first buggy in a long list that I've had which has made me cry - not good! I had sent my husband to Argos to get it quickly for me, as I was due to go out and meet friends that morning. When he came home I put it up and assembled it (which only involved putting on the wheels and hood) - then I couldn't get the damn thing down! I spent ages trying to fold it and just couldn't work it out, and I ended up in tears as I had missed several buses and was going to be late for my friends. I ended up having to give up trying to fold it and walk the hour into town - and thus began my feelings of hatred for this buggy!
When using it for the first time, I noticed just how difficult it was to push and steer. It felt so so heavy compared to my previous, much larger iCandy Cherry. In fact, it was so difficult to push that I thought maybe it was faulty, as the wheels just didn't seem to want to turn - when in actual fact I just wasn't putting enough force behind pushing it as I had been used to the Cherry turning on a sixpence and being light enough to push with my little finger! I had to teach myself a whole new technique in buggy pushing! By the time I had come home I was suffering with arm and backache. I think because the frame is so "square" - as in the rear uprights are totally upright, not slanting backwards and joining the handles like a Mac Quest or Silver Cross Pop - means there is more resistance when pushing. My husband later managed to help me figure out the folding method - which involves pulling out a metal bracket (where the bit you kick up to collapse would normally be on a buggy) which hooks underneath. It's not obvious at first and the user instructions only have diagrams and no text to describe exactly what you need to do. The folding is fiddly and a two handed job, so I don't think it's a good buggy for public transport.
A few other cons to this stroller is the width of the seat, the wheels and the hood. The seat unit is extremely narrow - my daughter at only 7 months didn't seem to have a lot of growing room width-ways, and she wasn't a particularly large baby. The wheels wear down very quickly - I only used this buggy a handful of times over a period of a few weeks, yet the wheels had worn down more than those on my eldest sons pushchair which I used solely for 2.5 years! The hood is pretty thin, flimsy and useless. It doesn't offer any real protection or cover, and it has no viewing windows.
The plus points to the Atlas, are the price, the recline and the raincover. The raincover is one of the best of any stroller I've owned - it's very thick, easy to attach, fits perfectly and provides full coverage. It's not the most compact folding due to the thickness, but of all the things about this buggy it's the one part that seems really good quality - it's just a shame they didn't put as much thought into the design of the buggy itself! The recline is excellent, it goes completely flat 180 degrees, so really is a true "from birth" stroller. The seat unit is pretty hard for a newborn, but with a thick padded liner or footmuff it could be made perfectly comfortable. There is also a decent length adjustable leg rest, which supports even a large toddlers legs right to their ankle (assuming they fit widthways into the seat that is!). Lastly, the price is good for a stroller that's suitable from birth. It's around £80 rrp, but you can often find it on offer at a reduced price. I think the £49.99 I got it for on offer was just right.
To summarise - although this stroller with the "Atlas" name suggests it's good for travel, I actually think it's not user friendly, compact or lightweight enough to be a travel buggy, when you compare it to the super light, small folding and sturdy Mac Quest/Triumph. However, it's not built to be an every day buggy either in my opinion. So what/who is it good for? I think if you're strapped for cash, need an emergency interim buggy, and don't mind having something to grumble about, then this is the perfect buggy for you! However there are lots better available on the buggy market, and I strongly suggest spending a few more £'s if you can afford to. I wouldn't recommend this to anyone.
Summary: A poorly designed pushchair overall
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