Hi. I wanted to give any prospective buyers a guide to the Stokke Xplory. As you will know, if you are considering an Xplory, these pushchairs are a high quality/high price item. The Xplory is sure to get you lots of attention wherever you go because of its innovative design, and attention to detail. The main difference with an Xplory is the fact that baby is at a higher height - i.e., not in a pushchair which like the norm is down below your level, and baby/toddler sees lots of legs, dogs, etc. They are up nice and high and can have 'eye contact' with you. They see everything and have a great birds eye view of the world. The pushchair can be forward or rearward facing - so you can see baby, or baby can see the world in full view. It does of course also have a 'baby bag' which is basically like a carrycot, so that the very young baby can be totally flat when out and about. This, whilst a great idea, is not a large carrycot, and if your baby happens to be long, then you will have limited use of this item, which is an extra. Also, the 'baby bag' isn't very deep, and comes with what is called a 'comfort pack' which is a fleece lined sleeping bag type affair. This is very very warm. Stokke have now brought out a 'comfort pack light' which is more lightweight, and probably better suited to our indoor shopping centres, where the original one tended to keep baby a little too warm. The Xplory can be used from birth without the 'baby bag' so it isn't a compulsory purchase.
The Xplory is beautifully easy to manoevre - it can turn of a 'sixpence' - which is great when you are out shopping and in tight spaces. Its very comfortable to push, and can be adjusted in height, i.e., how high baby is, very easily. The handle height too can be adjusted without difficulty. Therefore, you can customise it to your own height and preference. It is ideal when you are out - as forward facing the Xplory is an excellent high chair when you decide that you deserve a coffee!! Baby can be fed easily in the Xplory, and it fits right up to the table, which means you don't have to use that grubby high chair found in so many of our cafes and restaurants. Also, the Xplory has a very large shopping bag which folds flat, and is very attractive, but when unfolded will hold quite a lot. The changing bag - which is an extra, is attractive, but not necessarily practical for a days outing, as it isn't really all that big. Its nice to have it all matching - but a bigger changing bag would have been better. The raincover, is very good - covers well and is relatively easy to use.
The Xplory will be an expensive purchase for you. Look carefully at it. Its quite large, so will not fit in some car boots - and if you had to place in the footwell of the front passenger seat - again in a lot of cars it just simply wouldn't fit. Its quite heavy, and I would say, that for a Mum out on her own with baby, it is not the most ideal pushchair to fold and unfold. I would probably tend to opt for something different if I had to use public transport.An Xplory user has contacted me to say that she uses public transport and finds the Xplory no problem to use. Bearing in mind that the rear wheels fold in and you can use it like a hand-cart. It makes it relatively simple to use on stairs etc. Not having tried it - I can't vouch for this - however, I feel it fair to point out that this user is very happy with her Xplory for this purpose. If any other users have found it suitable on public transport - then I'd love to hear from them.
Please think your purchase through - look at the pushchair, but be sure that the Xplory matches your needs and that of your baby. Its an excellent pushchair - but please don't just buy one because it looks good!!
Also, please be aware should you be considering buying a used Xplory. Firstly, Stokke have now brought out adapters for use with certain car seats. If you are looking at a used Xplory pre-September 2006 - these adapters will not fit the chassis, and you will not be able to use a car seat on the chassis.
Please also note that there has now been incidence of a failure in the locking mechanism on the chassis of the Xplory. This results in the seat unit, which is locked in place when you have it in the position you want, not actually 'holding'. There have been incidences of the seat unit 'dropping' down the chassis, in some cases directly to the bottom. This is a reasonable distance for the unit to descend, and your first reaction is to assume that you have not set the locking mechanism properly. However, if you investigate - you will find that you have. You can re-lock etc., but the seat unit will still descend, albeit in small stages. Stokke are aware of this problem. However, as it has happened to relatively few Xplorys they do not intend to recall them. They will offer the 'fix' of a 'pin' which is to be inserted at or near the locking mechanism. This in my mind is unsatisfactory. This is clearly a safety issue, and should be addressed in the proper manner. Whilst it is not happening on all units - and it is to be imagined that any new Xplorys will not suffer with this problem, I cannot be certain that it will not happen.
UPDATE regarding the failure of the mechanism. Regarding previously mentioned problem. I received the 'fix' from Stokke. This was a think piece of copper coloured metal with a flange end, it was about the size of a postage stamp. The fix is to insert it into the space where the lock for the clip is - it slides into place. (The instructions for this were on a paper dated September 2005 - which therefore means that Stokke have been aware that there was a potential problem from that date or earlier). Once inserted, this metal insert DOES hold the seat unit where it should be. Therefore, it no longer descends. However, in my mind this is not acceptable - as they have been aware of a potential problem and safety issue (in my mind), and should have made sure that this problem was fixed at source. I have now received a new chassis. The new chassis is slightly different from the old one, although everything fits it. The chassis now comes with slightly different looking trim to the wheels. The moveable parts, i.e., the clips for removing the seat unit, and the altering of the seat unit, and also the clip which locks the seat unit, and the clip where you extend the handle - these are now white. The back bar which reads Stokke on the bottom of the chassis, where you use it as a lever to fold and also the brake are also white. It does look a little bizarre. However, their reason is that now all moveable parts, or parts which have a function are white - so you are in no doubt! Frankly, I preferred the chassis as it was. The brake being white, and the back bar which you in all fairness push your foot against to fold the chassis - get grubby of course. So you have to constantly wash them to keep them clean. However - when you inspect the area where the 'fix' of the previous chassis was - you will clearly see that there is a copper coloured piece of metal inside, whether this is the pin as they call it, or infact a new type of manufacture, I don't know. However - it appears that they are now making the chassis to conform to a better standard.
This is an addendum dated September 3 2007. I'd just like to mention that yesterday our Stokke Xplory failed again. This is exactly the same fault as the previous chassis had. The new chassis we were supplied was manufactured 19.10.2006 and we were informed that the problem no longer existed. However, yesterday it collapsed again. This time whilst my grandson was having his lunch in a restaurant. Fortunately he was sitting at the end of the table facing his Mum and not actually facing the table - as in that case his face would have undoubtedly struck the table. This time the seat unit descended all the way down. It will now no longer stay at the highest position, or any other position other than that at the lowest height. It descends completely each time you re-adjust it. This Xplory is used on average 3 times a month. It is kept in my car - its approximately 9 months old - and the original chassis we had failed at approximately 9 months old. The Xplory isn't difficult to put up and down nor to lock into position - you can't get it wrong. So there appears again to be a fault. I have contacted the supplier who in turn are contacting Stokke - I await to hear from them.
The update on the failure of the new 2007 chassis. Once again Stokke have supplied the 'pin' fix, which is a small piece of metal approximately the size of a postage stamp. This is inserted and basically sits on top of the mechanism, to give it a little extra height to allow the chassis to stay in place. Our chassis is once again functional - but it is my opinion that this is a fix - and does not solve the problem which appears to exist in the design. This part is still being looked at by Stokke. I do hope that they will find some way of redesigning or stopping this from happening in future units.
The Stokke Xplory is a fantastic pushchair - its a high end price tag - therefore, if there are any problems, you should have the right to a decent service, and not a fix which is basically a cheap and easy way out. If you do have an Xplory or buy a 2nd hand Xplory just make sure you are aware there has been the problem. New Xplorys from I would say end of 2006 should be ok. Earlier ones will be the ones with any problem, although it doesn't seem to have affected every chassis. If you have bought from a retailer, then if you have a problem, get back to them - tell them what has happened and see what they tell you. If you, like me, weren't happy with the pin idea, then explain your feelings, email them etc. Stokke want their items to be top of the range - but that means top of the range prices. Therefore we expect top of the range service. Their customer service and sales office is no longer in the United Kingdom - nearest is in the Netherlands. Make sure you are happy if you have a problem, and don't accept what you aren't happy with - you know it doesn't make sense.
Please - look at the Stokke Xplory - its a great pushchair. I have tried to give you the pluses and minuses - more pluses than minuses really. However, please be vigilant if purchasing a used Xplory - make sure it doesn't have a problem with the locking mechanism. Be aware there is a problem - forewarned is forearmed - or so they say.
I'll keep this updated, with regard to any information I may receive from Stokke regarding chassis failure. Even given the above problems we have experienced - this pushchair is an absolute dream - its manoevreability is second to none, its height and adaptability are far far superior to anything on the market today. Quite frankly - it is the best pushchair around - you will love using it - and your child will love being in it.
I hope that this guide has been useful.
Further addendum dated 10 March 2008
Our Stokke Xplory is still functioning. However, I wanted to update this Guide in that several people have now contacted me having experienced similar problems. Mostly these have been the failure of the chassis which I have mentioned - and this has been generally on the earlier model. I have also had one note of the actual chassis near the wheel area actually 'snapping' - therefore the chassis couldn't be used. The owner of this Xplory had it fixed herself - but then had the problem with the chassis failing. When she contacted Stokke they said to return the unit to an address - which is the UK service centre - located at WhizzyWheels - and they would assess the cost of repair! At that point she contacted me via EBay. I told her that this was unacceptable and under no circumstances to return the unit to the centre. I advised her to contact Stokke once again - and gave her the gist of what information to put in the mail. She contacted me again to say that Stokke had in fact replaced the chassis for her free of charge - and she was now able to use the Xplory without problem.
I have also had one person contact me with a new chassis - the one with the white moveable parts - and this chassis has also failed. Therefore it is clear that the new chassis does still have a problem - and I wanted to update the Guide to let people know this. The problem is still there - it does not affect every unit - and I can't seem to gauge what makes it happen. It doesn't seem to be overuse, or underuse. It is abuse - as its not really 'rocket science' to put it up and down - so it just must be the luck of the draw to a certain extent.
It still is a fantastic pushchair - it does have problems - which is a shame - as I do feel that given the fact that a good number of chassis have failed - they are aware of it - and whilst I appreciate that it may be a 'design fault' and may be expensive to correct - and the pin fix works - what will it take for Stokke to actually rectify the design and make this a pushchair which doesn't have an issue? Hopefully not the injury of a child - as if the chassis fails - it fails - and down it goes - and it does it quickly.
Please if any of you do have a problem - do let me know - I'm trying to keep a record - which I feel is important.
Again though can I say that as a pushchair it is great - it pushes easily and little ones are nice and high and see everyone instead of legs! I don't think there is anything in that respect that can beat it - I just wish it didn't have this problem.
Stokke Xplory - Pros and Cons
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11 March 2008
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