Tips for Buying a Used Stokke Tripp Trapp


This post is not going to interest my regular readers (mom) at all. So feel free to skip it. (But of course some cute photos of Hunter just for you, momma.) If you want to know more about how to buy a previously-loved Tripp Trapp, read on...

The Tripp Trapp is a children's highchair that I have admired since I first noticed it during my au pair experience in Switzerland. Every other Swiss family I encountered also had this chair. Why I love it:
  • It grows with the child. (Even in a family with preteen children, the kids still sat in their chairs at the kitchen table.)
  • It's designed to be ergonomic.
  • It encourages babies to eat at the family table.
  • Beautiful aesthetics (love the special edition wood collection: European Oak and American Walnut)
What I don't like about it: It's not very budget-friendly. (Around $250)

I do believe it's worth the investment since it can be used for many years beyond infancy and toddlerhood, but I love a good deal. If I can find it used on craigslist, I will try to get it that way. So, if you're like me, these tips are for you.

1. First, make sure the Tripp Trapp is the right highchair for your family. Safety alert! The Tripp Trapp is designed so that if the baby pushes off the table with his hands or feet, the chair should glide backwards rather than tip over. The Stokke website specifies that the chair should be used on very smooth surfaces (like parquet instead of carpet or tile) so that the chair will indeed slide rather than tilt. For correct ergonomic seating (elbows level with tabletop), it is also designed to be used at a table between 28-30" tall. 

All that said, our table is 31" high, so Hunter does not sit with the optimum ergonomic positioning, but since he sits there so infrequently, I am not concerned about it. He manages food on the table just fine. It does mean, however, that his feet land at the perfect height to kick off of the big frame under the tabletop. Plus, our linoleum flooring is old and has some rough patches. Hunter is able to tilt the chair slightly, but it has not tipped over. We never leave him unattended in the Tripp Trapp.

Also, please note that new chairs include a set of extended gliders (see photo) to help the chair glide more easily, but it is likely that the purchase of a used chair will not include them. Call Stokke to receive a set of extended gliders at no cost to you. Provide the date of manufacture and the color of your chair, and you're good to go!


2. Decide when you would like to start using the chair. With the proper accessories, you can begin using the Tripp Trapp when your baby starts eating solids (can sit up without support), more or less around 6 months. Otherwise, you can use the chair without any accessories when your child is able to sit in a chair on her own.

(If you plan to use a cheapie, easy-to-clean plastic chair first and the Tripp Trapp later, then skip to tip #4. If you want this to be the one and only highchair you ever have to buy for your child, continue to #3.)

3. Learn about the differences between manufacturing dates. Check the bottom of the legs of the chair to find out when the chair was manufactured (day/month/year) -- you'll find the date below the serial number. Currently, there are two baby accessories available to the US market, and neither of them will be compatible with older models. 

The white plastic Baby Rail is one option, but from my research, it seems to be only compatible with models from 2006-2008. That rail requires a particular white seat clip that attaches to the seat plate. (See photo.) It connects the crotch strap of the 5-point (fabric) harness to the chair and provides a place to "click" the plastic crotch piece of the rail in place. If you're considering a used chair that comes with this Baby Rail, make sure the seller also gives you the white seat clip, or you may have trouble getting your hands on one. (Stokke might sell it as a replacement part, but they have probably discontinued it by now. Luckily, I found mine on ebay and the seller sold it with the harness straps.) This system does not have a back rest, but I find that my baby sits well in his chair with just the Baby Rail.


The Baby Set is a baby rail plus back rest, comes in a variety of colors to match the chairs, and is the latest baby accessory. According to an old Global Stokke webpage, it is compatible with all Tripp Trapps from May 2003 on (with serial #s that start with 3, 4, or 5). During an e-mail exchange with Stokke USA, however, the rep wrote that the new Baby Set is only compatible with chairs made after June 2006. The Baby Set requires a seat attachment that is different from the white seat clip I mentioned before. To use the Baby Set, the crotch piece of the plastic rail attaches to the slot on the seat plate rather than a clip that protrudes from under the seat plate (as with the older Baby Rail). If the chair you are considering doesn't come with any seat attachment (a white plastic component inside the slot located on the seat plate, which should also have the crotch strap attached), you can contact Stokke to purchase a replacement part crotch strap. You can then buy a harness and the Baby Set and your chair will be complete and ready for baby's use.

Conclusions: If a seller has a chair with the old Baby Rail, white seat clip, crotch strap, and harness, go for it -- you won't need anything else. If any of that is missing, make sure the chair is newer than June 2006 so you can buy all the components you will need to be able to use the newer Baby Set.

If you have a chair made between 2006-2008 with everything you need for the old Baby Rail but you would prefer the newer Baby Set, you would also need to purchase the replacement part seat attachment/crotch strap to replace the white seat clip.

4. Sign up for craigslist alerts. Let those e-mail alerts do the work for you!

5. Figure out what you consider a good deal. Is a $50 savings worth it to you, or would you be happy to fork over that extra $50 to have a brand new chair that includes everything (5-point harness and extended gliders). Before responding to a craigslist ad, check Amazon just to be sure they haven't slashed prices on the particular color you want to buy. 

For us, we bought a used chair in the "cherry" color (which is more like an oak color) for $80, but color was not a big deal for us. The seller sold it to us with the old Baby Rail, but no harness or white seat clip/crotch strap (which is necessary to attach the Baby Rail to the chair). I ended up purchasing a 5-point harness (including the crotch strap and seat clip) on ebay for $45 (including shipping), bringing the total spent on used products to $125.

At the time, Amazon had the natural color on special for $150. So $125 versus $150 would mean a basic savings of $25, which is not very impressive at all. But really, with a new chair I would have had to buy a Baby Set for $70 to be able to use the chair starting at 6 months, bringing the total for new products to $220. So my actual savings is $95 ($125 vs. $220). Now that's much better.

Had I not been able to track down a seat clip to be able to use the old Baby Rail, I would have had to buy a replacement part crotch strap ($25), a harness ($25), and the Baby Set ($70), bringing the total to $200. That savings would only be $20, and totally not worth buying a used chair. When compared to the regular price for a chair, however, the savings would still be better to buy used. $250 (regular price for chair) + $70 (regular price for Baby Set) = $320 versus $200 for used chair with replacement parts and new Baby Set. Savings of $120.

OK, so that was lengthy, huh?  Well, this is the information I wish I had had when I was shopping for a used Tripp Trapp, and I hope it helps someone!

18 comments

  1. nice tips!! it does seem like everyone here has one! i was fortunate that my companies 'gift' is a stokke trip trapp which was nice. i kind of wish i ahd one that had a tray though...and i heard that they could but i think they don't make that anymore. anyway, i do like it and i do like that it will grow with him!

    ReplyDelete
  2. He loves sitting at the table with his parents to eat.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I think I am one of the very few moms here in Switzerland who never had a Tripp Trapp. The design is a bit too modern for me, so I just never found it appealing for my space, but I do see why others might fall in love with it! My friend Shanti has 4 children and each one of them has his/her own Tripp Trapp, in a different color!

    I will say this though: my 15 month old nephew now hates his Tripp Trapp and does not want to sit on it AT ALL, he prefers to kneel on a normal chair at meal times. His was new and as you know they are quite expensive, so his parents are crossing their fingers that he'll get back into it at some point! he might sit there now if they removed the seat clip, but then he would be much higher than a normal chair, sooo...

    Anyway, I am glad Hunter likes it so much! He is so adorable. I can't believe how big he's gotten!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love the idea of getting the chairs in all different colors. so fun! UUgh, I hope Hunter continues to cooperate and sit in his tripp trapp. We bought it used, but still!

      Delete
  4. Hello, I just got a used tripp trapp chair and it looks like yours with the seat clip and harness. However, it did not come with the baby rail. Do I correctly understand from your post that it will not work with the new baby set? Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It depends on the year your chair was manufactured. In point #3 I mention that if your chair is made after 2006 you can use the new baby set but you would need to get your hands on a new crotch strap (one that does NOT look like the white seat clip in my photo).

      Delete
  5. Hello, I just got a used Tripp Trapp with the seat clip as shown above. My daughter no longer needs the baby rail, so I am wondering if I can remove the clip. Is it integral to the harness, or can I take it off? I am worried that if I go mucking about with it I might accidentally break something critical, so I don't want to just try pulling the pins out. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. hi! If you want to keep using the harness, then yes, you need to keep the seat clip installed. The crotch strap/buckle attaches to the chair through the seat clip. Without the crotch strap, the harness is useless. Hope this helps!

      Delete
  6. I just started using my trip trapp from the early 80's it was my favorite chair and I've held on to it Ali these years. Today my 5mos old daughter is sitting in it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is wonderful! I have my eye out for a second chair for our new baby (4 months old). Thanks for stopping by!

      Delete
  7. Just got a 2005 used, will I not be able to use the newer babyset with it? And, will the extended glide on the Stokke site be compatible?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As far as I understand, you will not be able to use the new baby set, but you should call Stokke just to be sure. Also, I would call Stokke directly about getting an extended glider rather than from the website. Although this was 2 years ago, they sent me one for free. All they wanted to know was the year it was made.

      Delete
    2. Hi, I know this may be a bit late, but I just got a baby set not realizing that we had an old model chair (2002) that it wouldn't fit. But after some mucking around I found that if you just remove the lower back rail and install it using only the top rail, it works great! We've been using this way with our son for two months and it's worked great.

      Delete
  8. I bought a used older model tripp trapp manufactured in 2003. It came with the rail and a leather strap that goes in between leg area. I am just trying to use it as a high chair and would like to attach a tray to and also a 5 point harness for safety. How do I do this? I have looked on ebay and I'm not certain what the part is called or what it looks like. Can you post a link for me to help clarify. I called stokke and they just told me nothing is compatible with it and can't help.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Tisha, thanks for stopping by. I wish I could be of more help, but if Stokke says that nothing is compatible with your chair, they are the experts, so you should trust their advice. However, if you really want to make your chair work, here is what I would do. I would buy a 5-point harness on ebay like this one: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Stokke-Tripp-Trapp-Harness-5-Point-/182044205287?hash=item2a62ae20e7:g:CF0AAOSwZQxW2fT1. Make sure it has a crotch strap like the one shown in the last photos. I have never used the tray, but you can try to find a used one and see if it works with your chair. If not, you can always resell this stuff on ebay. If all this fails, you will still be able to use this chair with your child when he/she is around 3 years old and will no longer need the harness for safety. As for the rail with leather strap, I do NOT have any experience with how this would work in combination with the harness, but most likely you can't use both at the same time. I think in Europe some people still use the thin wooden rail and leather strap, so you might be able to sell those on ebay as well. Good luck!

      Delete
    2. Thanks for sharing your info. I wanted to add that I bought an older model Tripp Trapp recently that did not have the harness. I ordered a new harness for it and also found that the back loop on the new harness does not fit around the lower back rail -- I think they've reduced the sizing of the rail over time. Disappointing. -Katie

      Delete
    3. Oh, really! What year is your chair? Mine is 2003 and I was looking into the harness option.

      Delete
  9. Your blog is amazing and much appreciated. Stokke should hire you to blog for them:) I remember how confused I was when I bought mine and found your information invaluable.

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for stopping by. Words cannot express how much I appreciate your comments!

Copyright © Amanda Freerksen 2008-. All rights reserved. Powered by Blogger.
Maira G.