Gary Fisher 1999 Kaitai Hardtail Bike

4.59/5 (74 Reviews)
MSRP : $749.99


Product Description

1999 Gary Fisher Kaitai, mountain bike, front suspension, Mountain Mix components, Rock Shox Judy C, 3.15" travel fork


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Reviews 1 - 15 (74 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Alex

Date Reviewed: October 29, 2013

Strengths:    Frame is like a german tank, everlasting, very nice to handle

Weaknesses:    saddle, pedals, handlebarpads, the frame colour vanished/faded from yellow to white

Bottom Line:   
Frame eats everything, riding it for 12 years now, all Parts except the saddle and the pedals are genuine till now
very durable, seems like made for hundred years

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Joe a Racer from Pittsburgh, PA, USA

Date Reviewed: February 1, 2003

Strengths:    Very Durable. Genesis Geometry is the best! It's so easy to maneuver while riding uphill, over trees, or anywhere. The price is right!

Weaknesses:    Pedals and saddle (but that's the same for most bikes). The fork is outdated now, so I'm hoping to get a Manitou Black or a Fox Fork soon.

Bottom Line:   
In 1999, I bought a Tassajara and my dad bought the Kaitai. After riding his bike a few times, I told him that he needed a new bike and I needed the Kaitai. On the trails it feels like a part of your body. It has stood up to trees, rocks, and bashing on other types of terrain. I ride my bikes hard, and this one seems to be able to take the heat. After two Fisher bikes, I will not ride anything else. If somehow it got totaled one day, and it wasn't rideable, I'd go right out to the bike shop and buy a new one. I think this bike is perfect for anybody just getting into the sport, or who has experience in racing.

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Favorite Trail:   Very Technical

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $650.00

Purchased At:   Bike Line

Similar Products Used:   Gary Fisher 1999 Tassajara

Bike Setup:   I replaced the pedals, saddle, handlebars, and the big chainwheel. Now I have Crank Bros. Egg Beater pedals, WTB Speed V saddle, Easton Monkeylite riser handlebar, and a Salsa bash guard.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Rob a Cross Country Rider from Durham, NC

Date Reviewed: May 17, 2002

Strengths:    Durability, this bike has survived more wrecks than I can count

Weaknesses:    Stock cranks, drive train, seat

Bottom Line:   
This bike has just been replaced by an '01 Fuel as my off-road bike after taking some serious abuse. I got this bike in 1999 after not riding for 5 years and basically relearned how to ride on it. During the last 2 years the bike has survived several high speed impacts with rocks and trees, and has probally kept me out of the emergency room on more than one occassion. Even though I just got the Fuel, I'm keeping the KaiTai as my back-up/cruising bike, just throwing some slicks on it. A great bike to learn basic skills on.

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Favorite Trail:   New Light, Rocky Road, Governor's Creek

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $600.00

Bike Setup:   Upgraded cranks/drivetrain to 9 spd LX/XT

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Larry a Weekend Warrior from Estonia

Date Reviewed: May 16, 2002

Strengths:    Great bike for the money, genesis geometry rocks, good reliabilty, looks sweet

Weaknesses:    Saddle and pedals have to go immediately. Alivio front derailleur sucks but I can live with it, brakes aren't that good either but just get some better pads

Bottom Line:   
Ever since I started riding this bike I'm a Fisher patriot. It handles pretty well (not great) and both climbing and downhill are a breeze. I've tortured this thing for 3 years now and all I've managed to bust were the front chainrings on tougher climbs (twice). Great for a beginner, gradually upgrade as your wallet allows (try to go for full XT) and eventually you'll have an awesome bike cause the frame doesn't leave much to desire.

PS cut off the rubber protection things on the fork and it looks much better, havn't had any problems w/ it yet

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Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $750.00

Purchased At:   Bikes USA

Similar Products Used:   Quite a few including Scott, Specialized and Giant in about the same price range

Bike Setup:   Added fat barends, STX cranks, new saddle, clipless pedals

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Chris Percy a Weekend Warrior from China, Maine, USA

Date Reviewed: September 13, 2001

Strengths:    This bike is awesomely stiff and stable. Wicked forgiving. I climbed on it after not riding for four years confident I would eat dirt and have not seen the asphault yet.

Weaknesses:    The grips sweat and roll on the bars a bit. The saddle leaves a lot to be desired in the comfort department. The peddles do not belong on this bike. Upgrade the peddles and the seat and you will be all set.

Bottom Line:   
THIS BIKE ROCKS. I got a good deal buying last years model (when I bought it) for $300 off the tagged price. It is an XL so pretty much only I can ride it. It is rugged as hell and I would totally buy another Fisher if I ever have to replace this one. I have never ridden a bike this rugged or forgiving. I would highly recommend this bike for anyone who wants to spend all of their time off the beaten path. It is definitely not a road bike. It begs to be beaten up and thrashed. You should not own a fisher if you plan to ride on the sidewalk.

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Favorite Trail:   ANY

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $650.00

Purchased At:   Bar Harbor Bike in Ellsworth

Similar Products Used:   1993 GT Karakorum - which sucked out loud. A 1997 Scott front suspension which was rugged, but nothing like the Katai.

Bike Setup:   It has LX all around except for the crank which is a shimano "A" with a shimano "A" deralleur. Rock Shox Judy C front suspension with Bontrager Corvair wheels and hubs. The front is radial laced.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Chuck Brands a Cross Country Rider from Seattle

Date Reviewed: June 1, 2001

Strengths:    Frame, price.

Weaknesses:    Brakes, crankset.

Bottom Line:   
Great bike for the money. Extremely comfortable and takes a beating. In two years I haven't had a single failure on frame or components. Gary Fisher builds 'em like a tank, albeit a tank that handles like a porsche.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Devil's Gulch

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $750.00

Purchased At:   Montlake Cycle

Similar Products Used:   Kona, Klein.


Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Daniel Richardson a Racer from San Diego, US

Date Reviewed: April 30, 2001

Strengths:    The first thing I noticed about the bike was the geometry. Gary Fisher makes a wonderful frame. The frame is light and strong, and takes just about anything i do to it.

Weaknesses:    The two major problems with this frame is the decending prowess and the cornering ability. The top tube is placed at a angle that takes away from the cornering and puts it to comfort.

Bottom Line:   
This is a strong compeditior, its fast, light and reliable on the single tracks. There are a few painful problems, but no bike is perfect.
BOTH RATINGS ARE FOR THE FRAME ONLY

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Favorite Trail:   Single tracks

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $400.00

Purchased At:   Just purchased the Frame. UC cyc

Similar Products Used:   Giant XTC DS1 (full suspention)

Bike Setup:   All XTR(deralers, hubs, casset, shifters) Race Face(Crank, stem, handlebars) Bontrager(rims, seat post) RS (sid SL)

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Chris a Weekend Warrior from Summerland B.C.

Date Reviewed: March 23, 2001

Strengths:    It's very stong for a XC frame, It's good for all the allround riding i do. The hasn't broke yet.

Weaknesses:    XC Frame, stock brakes, Crank and ft. derailer, and handle bar.

Bottom Line:   
The Bike has got me though the good times and the bad, i have had to do is replaced the derailers and bent the rims. The bike is also great for trials and urban freeride. SHES GRAND:)

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Favorite Trail:   Summerland Dump

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $700.00

Purchased At:   Kelowna Cycle

Similar Products Used:   VPS Team DH, CCM Excel, those are the only bikes i have riden so i don't know what to compare.

Bike Setup:   2000 Manitou X-vert, Bontrager Crow-Bar and rest is stock

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Jonathan T a Weekend Warrior from Austin, TX USA

Date Reviewed: February 21, 2001

Strengths:    Good climber, solid downhiller, very responsive, at a nice price.

Weaknesses:    The manitou shocks wore out quickly because of the cheap elastimer. They have replaced these shocks on the newer models though. My bottom bracket is also going out due to extensive abuse on my part

Bottom Line:   
This is a fun reliable ride that can take whatever you dish out. Gary Fisher has my repeat business. I'm saving the cash and upgrading to a Sugar 3.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Emma Long

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $350.00

Purchased At:   from a friend


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Jim Parman a Racer from Fond du Lac, Wi

Date Reviewed: February 8, 2001

Strengths:    when pushed, it will roll

Weaknesses:    just the person riding it

Bottom Line:   
steve cannot keep up with me, man, does this boy dream, the only time he was ever able to keep up with me was when i was riding my 40+ lb. kona blast. there is no trail on earth steve can keep up with me. wtf. who does this boy think he is. he is just jealouse 'cause i am sponsored, and just because my bike is worth $4000 doesn't mean that it costed me $4000. Steve, any time any day.
I'm not saying his bike is bad, but steve rides for fun, which i do, but i also like to be competitive, and his bike is perfect for him, as mine is perfect for me, both bikes suite their riders just fine. P.S. steve, I have aquired my old Mavics, they are nice, 221/formula f, and 222/deore lx r, i give 'em to you if you want.

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Favorite Trail:   baird creek

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $4000.00

Purchased At:   schwinn cyclery and fitness

Similar Products Used:   none

Bike Setup:   Schwinn homegrown, rolf propel wheelset, avid mag brakes/levers, moxy pro seatpost, time atac carbon pedals, selle italia flite gel saddle, Manitou Mars C fork, titec hellbent xc handlebar, icon sterling crankset, xtr cassette, xt everything else

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Stephen Roecker a Cross Country Rider from Neenah, WI, USA

Date Reviewed: February 8, 2001

Strengths:    Reasonable price,great paint job, good handling, versitile, when pushed it can fly

Weaknesses:    The Alivio Crank four bolt setup I bent on my first ride but after replaced by the shop with the same crank it held. You have to replace the brakes do to the fact that they suck.

Bottom Line:   
Gary Fisher giving you a deal so take it. I've seen one of my best friends spend over $4000 dollars to upgrade his Shwinn Homegrown and I can still keep up with him. Just remember its not always the bike thats the problem. This is a great bike for someone who wants to get serious but can't afford more. You could do worse for the same amount of money, I've seen it happen. This bike for is for someone whose learning the ropes, so break out our pencil and paper for Mountain Biking 101.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Baird Creek

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $700.00

Purchased At:   Neenah Bike and Fitness

Bike Setup:   I only replaced the pedals with Bontrager RE-1 clipless, and a Bontrager Crowbar riserbar.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Rob Robinson a Cross Country Rider from Essex Jct., VT

Date Reviewed: January 26, 2001

Strengths:    Genesis Geometry, Price, Performance

Weaknesses:    Component Durability, 8-speed compatability

Bottom Line:   
This is a long term review of my 99 Kaitai. I had not ridden a bike in years, but as my kids got older I wanted a bike again. I got a hardtail MTB so that I could do bike paths with the family and also do XC riding with friends who are serious riders/racers.

In short, I love this bike. It was served me very well over the last 2 years. The fact is that if your not a serious rider $1500 - 2000 is a lot to spend on a ride. The $600 I spent was a good compromise for me (enough that I got some good parts [Judy, LX] and not too much to have to get divorced.)

I have had some durability issues with the component selection, though. I ride about once a week from April to October, 5-10 miles per ride. I replaced the chain after about a year (I'd estimate that was 350 miles tops.) I found that the middle ring on the crap Alivio crank was toast as well as the cheap BB. I ended up buying a whole new crankset, becuase getting the right "Alivio" ring (a standard LX would not fit) turned out to be a HUGE pain in the ass. I'm also wishing that the drive train was 9speed. Finding upgrade parts for the 8s trans. is difficult.

I was also unhappy with the BB mount front der. It was causing too much chain cross over resulting in poor shifting. I replaced that with XT and the shifting has improved.

This said, the bike has been great. It's not super light, which is OK since I don't race. And the heavier rims have lasted well. I'm a heavy rider (6' 0" 220#) and finesse is not my strong suit. I have definitely learned how to XC, clear obsticles and gained skills, thanks to a great bike. I really like the Genesis Geomerty, will definitely consider another Gary Fisher for my next bike. And now that I understand more, I'll proably flip for a more expensive bike.

If you are on a budget and are willing to upgrade parts as they wear-out, excellent choice.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Costco

Duration Product Used:   2 Years

Price Paid:    $600.00

Purchased At:   Stowe Action Outfitters

Similar Products Used:   Lots tested, few with any real time in the saddle

Bike Setup:   Upgraded Crank (Sachs), Front Der (XT), Saddle (Bonti FS+10), Pedals (Wellgo 800 SPD), Grips (Oury); Added Coda Paquito Bar Ends

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Mike Smrcka a Weekend Warrior from Barrie Ontario Canada

Date Reviewed: October 24, 2000

Strengths:    Great value for the $ (remember I'm in Canada) perfect bike for someone just getting into the sport. A frame you can start with and upgrade as you go.

Weaknesses:    brakes, cranks,pedals

Bottom Line:   
A good starter bike or for someone on a budget. I'm moving up to full suspension but I will keep my KaiTai for sure.

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Favorite Trail:   HardwoodHills

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $1000.00

Purchased At:   Silent Sports

Similar Products Used:   none

Bike Setup:   Raceface riser bars, ritchey clipless, xt brakes, Judy xc fork

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Tim Reid a Weekend Warrior from Gananoque, Ontario, Canada

Date Reviewed: September 24, 2000

Strengths:    Nice Frame, good colors, i can't say the same for the the 2000. strong wheel set very durable, genesis geometry, feels comfortable offroad, strong, and feels close to the ground for more control and balance

Weaknesses:    BB. cranks. handle bars. seat post. front and rear deraileurs. saddle. brakes.. levers big time. cassette. low end parts but the shifting works well, chain is a bit much.

Bottom Line:   
This is a great bike to own I really like, the parts are low end mostly, but with a few upgrades its a beautiful smooth bike good for offroad and on road, I recommend it for anyone is starting to ride. it is a good bike for most people but it does have it limits and you should know what you want before you buy a bike. this bike will take punishment but only to a certain level before stuff starts to fail. the crank set on it is one of the weakest spot with the 4 bolt pattern there is to much space between each bolt to keep it strong and will bend on tough offroad.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   blue mountain

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Purchased At:   T.I. Cycle

Similar Products Used:   Rockey Vapor

Bike Setup:   xtr hubs with mavic x517 rims, race face next lp cranks, un-52 bb. easton ct2 bars, avid arch rival brakes and speed dial 2.0 levers. bontrager seat post and stem, selle italia xo saddle, shimano clipless pedals, xt cassette

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Mattheau LeDuc a Racer from Harwich, Ma USA

Date Reviewed: September 24, 2000

Strengths:    pretty and nice name...(okay, my girlfriend made me write that.) Now for the real stuff...This is her bike, but I have yet to find a bike that handles quite like this one. The geometry is great. I'm 6'0" and her bike is a size SMALL and it's still comfortable for me. The way it handles is also really good. The fork has some preload adjusters, so you can really stiffen it up if you want. I've raced this in a Dual Slalom, and it handled/held up VERY WELL!


Weaknesses:    The only complaint here is that the components are not the top of the line, but for the price...I can't complain at all.

Bottom Line:   
The bottom line is, I can't think of many other bikes out there today that you could buy for this price and get so much out of. It has served us well and we are HARD on bikes. We highly recommend. With a few (preferencial) upgrades, this bike KICKS A**!

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Favorite Trail:   Mission Viejo National Park

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $550.00

Purchased At:   North Conway, NH

Similar Products Used:   Kona Roast, GT Backwoods, Specialized Stumpjumper/Rockhopper A1,

Bike Setup:   Stock--except for ClubRoost riser bars (highly recommend), and Diamondback Platform pedals (also highly recommend)

Reviews 1 - 15 (74 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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Kaitai 1999 repair. Need advice.

Hi all. I'm going to replace some original components on my Kaitai '99 and I'm not sure that newer parts are compatible with this frame. Shimano always confused me so I expect compatibility surprises here:madman: . So the questions: Q #1: Front derailleur. Original one is Alivio '99 E-type. A ... Read More »

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