Gary Fisher Hoo Koo E Koo 2003 Hardtail

4.38/5 (24 Reviews)
MSRP : $819.99


Product Description



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Reviews 1 - 15 (24 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Jeff Edman a Weekend Warrior from West Allis

Date Reviewed: May 26, 2006

Strengths:    Just purchased this bike today. Trek took this bike and stripped it down and swapped out the fork with a Manitou Black Platinum, and put a new crankset on. Don't know what they are called, but they are new lightweight bontagers. Upgraded derailer to deore xl, and the main reason why I purchased the bike, bontager ultra lite race rims, which are worth supposedly $800.

Weaknesses:    No disc brakes! I was going to swap them for teh v-brakes, but I would have to get rid of my lovely rims, and am i really that stupid to get rid of $800 rims for $300 heavier rims? We'll see how i deal without discs. Always wanted them. Anybody out there think they are that much worth it? Please let me know

Bottom Line:   
I got tehis bike cause of the low price. I guess I'll let you guys know how i like it in the next couple weeks.

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Favorite Trail:   kettle morain hills

Duration Product Used:   Tested or demo'ed only

Price Paid:    $620.00

Purchased At:   Wheel& Sprocket

Similar Products Used:   GT Agressor, Trek Fuel, Trek 6500 and 6700 disc, gary fisher big sur, jamis dakota


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Brian a Cross Country Rider from DuBois

Date Reviewed: August 8, 2005

Strengths:    price,colors,not too heavy,high quality materials,and rides very nice.

Weaknesses:    I really have no weaknesses to write down sorry!

Bottom Line:   
For the price I paid I am totally satisfied with my Hoo Koo E Koo. I don't know what others are talking about when they say the fork is trash, I don't think they are. Everything has a limit! If you have $850-1000 bucks,this is the bike for you. Iv rode mine for three years now and love it.

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Favorite Trail:   paved roads

Duration Product Used:   More than 3 years

Price Paid:    $850.00

Purchased At:   Planet Bike

Similar Products Used:   none

Bike Setup:   replaced seat with selle san marco gary fisher seat, swopped clipless pedals for system 1 pedals, took off all reflectors I don't ride at nite anyways!,put on short bar ends

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Chris a Cross Country Rider from RI

Date Reviewed: July 27, 2004

Bottom Line:   
This also is a follow up review. I agree with Zach. The Axel fork is junk. Mine broke after 4 weeks, replaced it with a Manitou Black Platinum. Now this is an awesome fork. Eventually I'd like to change out the derailleurs and cranks, but it is solid now.

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Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $700.00

Purchased At:   LBS


Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by zach a Weekend Warrior from sf, sd, usa

Date Reviewed: July 9, 2004

Strengths:    great frame, will take a beating

Weaknesses:    the components kinda suck.

Bottom Line:   
this is a follow up of my earlier review. the fork (manitou axel comp.) is just a waste. I've swapped almost everything out on the bike, avid brakes, xtr front derailleur and sram rear derailleur and shifters. looking for a new front fork b/c I've just about blown this one in a year. it flexes alot, a bottoms out on EVERYTHING. I only take off one chili, because it's a solid bike for $600.

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Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $600.00

Purchased At:   scheel's


Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Chris a Cross Country Rider from RI

Date Reviewed: June 15, 2004

Strengths:    Reputation, Genesis Geometry

Weaknesses:    BRAKES!

Bottom Line:   
I was in the market for a new bike, but couldn't spend a ton of money. I got this one for a steal because it was a leftover. So far a great bike. I used the Promax brakes for 2 rides and had to dump them. Otherwise a good solid bike.

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Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $700.00

Purchased At:   LBS

Similar Products Used:   Mongoose Rockadile

Bike Setup:   Everything as is except XT brakes, Panaracer Fire XC pro tires, And Selle Italia saddle

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Jonathan M a Cross Country Rider from Wavre (Belgium)

Date Reviewed: April 16, 2004

Strengths:    Price, confort, quality of construction, looks, genesis geometry,.....

Weaknesses:    Brake levers and V-Brake system.

Bottom Line:   
This is my first Gary Fisher bike and i'm very happy of my hoo koo e koo, He works great all time. Buy it if your budget is 1000$ you don't regreat your decision.
My Hoo Koo e Koo is simply BEST...

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Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $1200.00

Purchased At:   Bike Nature

Similar Products Used:   Gary Fisher Tassajara,

Bike Setup:   Deore LX rear derailleur, front derailleur and Shifter, Deore LX V-Brake and Brake levers, Ritchey elevader rear tire and Ritchey exevader front tire.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Nicholas a Cross Country Rider from San Diego, CA

Date Reviewed: April 1, 2004

Strengths:    Solid, confidence inspiring frame, Genisis geometry, good drivetrain (if you keep it lubed)

Weaknesses:    Fork is crappy for heavy riders, brakes look and feel flimsy

Bottom Line:   
For bigger people like me (6', 180) this bike is great. Once you get used to the spread out geometry, climbing is a breeze. I initially had problems with the fork lifting on climbs like some other people, but that quickly went away after working on my climbing technique (wrists down, torso forward).The real wheel bites pretty good in general, but fast cornering is still a bit sketchy on the flats and hardpack. The frame might not be the lightest or most trick, but it is super solid (even on the occasional jump and drop) and I am planning on upgrading it into a good trainer for XC racing. The fork is crap, its going to be replaced with a Fox fork as soon as I can pay off my credit card. The brakes look plasticky and feel plasticky and the front one is constantly out of alignment; they will be one of the first components replaced with the fork.
On a side note, no props go to the salesman at the Trek store who sold me the bike. He told me that the 04 HKEK would have the same spec as the 03, which was clearly false: the 04 has upgraded components all around, a better fork and ZR9000 tubing. The dirtbag was so intent on the sale that he lied to me. Don't get me wrong, the 03 was a steal for the price, but he didn't have to readily lie to my face in order to help me clear out their 03s.

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Favorite Trail:   Mission Trails Hills

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $700.00

Purchased At:   Trek Superstore

Bike Setup:   stock, with bar ends

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Stephanie a Cross Country Rider from South Hadley, MA, USA

Date Reviewed: November 29, 2003

Strengths:    Genesis geometry...puts you in that desired "weight over the back wheel" position...something I could not do easily with my old Marin Palisades Trail. Much easier to maneuver also. Comes with clipless pedals--stock, so I didn't have to shell out another $50 on top of the cost of the bike.

Weaknesses:    Came with V-brakes! Why is the Tassajara offered from GF with discs, while the HKEK isn't? This was an upgrade I had to have from my Marin, so I had to bite the bullet and add them on, plus new rims on top of it.

Bottom Line:   
I haven't experienced any of the seat discomfort other folks have mentioned. Let me clarify that I'm reviewing the '03, not the '04. This bike fits me much better than my Marin (the Marin was a 17" and the HKEK is a 15.5"--lets just say that back in 2001 when I didn't know much about biking, a local shop sold me the Marin which was obviously too big for me...I am only 5'4" and had about 1/4" of standover clearance, but what the heck did I know at the time? Needless to say, I don't patronize that shop anymore!) I feel like I have a lot of control over the bike, and that it's well-balanced, although I still am trying to get used to how easily the front end pulls up during steep climbs. With the addition of the discs, this bike is really awesome and was a great upgrade for me. I've only ridden hardtails, and this one was in the right price range (around $1000 once I had it modified to suit my needs). I'm not interested in dual-suspension bikes, and I honestly ride the same (if not better) than many folks who have the dualies. Bottom line--quality and good price for the componentry package.

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Favorite Trail:   Batchelor St

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $700.00

Purchased At:   Bikes Unlimited-Greenfield, MA

Similar Products Used:   2001 Marin Palisades Trail (hardtail)

Bike Setup:   Avid mechanical disc brakes, Spinergy rims, Panaracer tires

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by John a Weekend Warrior from Nutley, NJ 07110

Date Reviewed: September 17, 2003

Strengths:    Price, quality of construction, looks

Weaknesses:    Seat

Bottom Line:   
The bottom line is this: This is a great bike for almost anyone. When I was younger I always felt I "needed" the lightest and newest out there. This bike is pretty old-school, cantilever brakes, hardtail, and it suits me, and I suspect would most people, fine. It shifts well, the riding posture is comfortable.

It is a little on the heavy side, but not obnoxiously so. The Manitou Axel Comp fork has been much maligned by other reviewers, but seems to work well for me, & I weigh 185-200lbs. I have no worries about how this bike will hold up over the long haul. Everything is solid, if not state of the art.

Seats are tricky. The Titec Ithys seat that came with this bike and I never got along. It looks nice, but I found it uncomfortable. But seats are personal, so this is nothing to hold against the bike itself.

If you are looking for a bike to "get back in the swing of things", and your budget is sub $1000, check out the HKEK. I think you are better off with this bike than with a Tassajara Disc. I really don't need or want disc brakes and would rather see that dough go in to a better frame/fork/components. Plus the Tassajaras have crazy paint schemes that seem to give them a department store look.

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Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $819.00

Purchased At:   The Bikery

Similar Products Used:   Various Cannondales over the years;

Bike Setup:   Stock. Except for seat, and Continental Town & Country tires for doing laps on pavement.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by J Bogner a Weekend Warrior from New York, NY, USA

Date Reviewed: August 27, 2003

Strengths:    2004 upgrades are great: Platinum series tubing, Bontrager crank, XT rear derailleur, Bontrager Maverick rims, Shimano 420 V-Brakes, Rockshox Pilot SL fork. Nice silver and black color scheme.

Weaknesses:    The usual- seat, tires, etc., are just OK. Not totally sold on the new custom-like Fisher lettering.

Bottom Line:   
Get the new 2004 model over the 2003. The upgrades are pretty incredible- like getting a Big Sur at the Hoo Koo E Koo price. The frame upgrade alone would have made it worth it, but the new fork seals the deal and everything else is just gravy.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $800.00

Purchased At:   Grand Bicycle Center

Similar Products Used:   Bought a Fisher HK2 back in like '91 and rode it until it was stolen in '99. Just now replacing it with this one...

Bike Setup:   Stock (for now)

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by brent a Cross Country Rider from Butler, PA USA

Date Reviewed: August 14, 2003

Strengths:    the frame is great. I work at the bike shop so I rode all of the fishers below this. The drivetrain is amazing. Im tough on bike and the deraileurs never go astray.

Weaknesses:    The fork is beyond crap. I had this bike special ordered through the shop I work at. First thing I noticed as I built the bike was how soft the fork was. I am 6 foot anbd 165 lbs. I can bottom the fork on just pushing down on it. Took it on vacation and had it bottoming goin off small curbs. Ordered new extra firm springs ASAP. still horrible. Now after about 2.5 months I blew the fork out. Now I have to wait a couple weeks while I get a new one. lookin at the mantiou skreb with the stable platorm valving for racing.

Bottom Line:   
The bike is a lil on the heavy side for a race bike but the geometry is awesome. I had a specialized Hardrock A1fs before and I am now a lot faster than I was with the specialized. I am giving this bike a 4 chili rating because the fork is a waste of metal.

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Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $600.00

Purchased At:   Hites Bike Shop

Similar Products Used:   Specialized hardrock rockhoppers. sugars, treks. Basically all the treks, cannondales, raleighs, and some haros.

Bike Setup:   truvativ bashguard, new scareb elite fork soon, Big Cheese Stars grips.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Zach Rodasti a Cross Country Rider from Sioux Falls, SD USA

Date Reviewed: August 9, 2003

Strengths:    Great Frame- the fisher gold series climbs and descends well-if you like genesis geometry, you'll never like anything else. I like to ride shimano m515 clipless, nice amount of float. Also enjoy 29" tires-I feel more stable than on 26" Drive train seems to be nice so far, no problems with breaks yet...

Weaknesses:    seat is tough at first, but wears in. on really tough climbs back tire loses much traction. Recommend different tire, tried a michelin from a friend and it was great...

Bottom Line:   
I like the hoo alot, rides well. Loyal fisher fan for life.

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Favorite Trail:   just want to ride

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $749.00

Purchased At:   Scheels

Similar Products Used:   Marin nail trail, fisher tassajara, specialized rockhopper, marin eldridge grade

Bike Setup:   stock-ripped off reflectors.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Ian a Cross Country Rider from Montana

Date Reviewed: July 31, 2003

Strengths:    It's a great frame and geometry. Great Shock for someone lighter weight like me. Also good components and rims.
Easy to ride uphill because of the low gears.


Weaknesses:    The seat was a pain but after a while it gets worn in and a little better. Not bad enough to change. Brakes out of allignment all the time. Flat tires alot. Handling is a little tricky sometimes. Back tires sucks skids bad on the uphills.

Bottom Line:   
THis is a great bike and is very smooth for a hardtail. If you buy it you should get a new back tire and change the travel on the shock. I like this bike. Great for cross-country and trials riding. I would imaginge that the shock is a little soft for heavy riders but if your light it's great.

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Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $800.00

Purchased At:   Sun Summit in Sun Valley

Similar Products Used:   Trek 4900, Kona Blast, Cannondale 5300, Jamis Durrango sport and Jamis Dakar

Bike Setup:   New platform pedals with pegs and 100mm instead of 80mm on the travel on the fork

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Rich a Cross Country Rider from Novato, CA

Date Reviewed: July 16, 2003

Strengths:    Frame, Wheels, Shock

Weaknesses:    Tires, Saddle

Bottom Line:   
Wow! This is my first new bike in 12 years. I literally wore out my Rockhopper, so I looked at a new one. Didn't like it. Rode a few others, and didn't really look at Fisher because of the reputation, I thought they would be too expensive. I finally did seriously look at the Fisher, and I am so glad I did. I love the Genesis geometry; I feel more in control, and not as over the front wheel like on the Rockhopper. (Just like Gary intended!) I love the shock, but I may put in a stiffer spring. I am 200lbs, and even at full preload, it is still too squishy. I traded the clipless for toe clip pedals, and like the guy before me, bought a Serfas men's saddle. Whoo. Much better. Sure, I'm no breakneck racer, but I also don't pretend to be like so many other bikers I have seen. I have had to alter the way I ride significantly: I am now towing my son in a trailer. No more jumping rocks, or stumps without having to give thought to the little guy behind me. That's OK, it makes me go slower so I don't leave my wife behind anymore when we ride. My previous bike had 21 gears, the Hoo Koo has 27. It really helps for climbing. (Especially since I am now pulling an additional 40 pounds.) I would seriously recommend this bike for intermediate riders who want to do dirt and pavement riding. The Hoo Koo doesn't try to be a racer's bike, because it ain't. Consider this: when you buy a bike, you are likely to have it for 5-8 years before getting a new one. Don't buy a $400 crapper to save money. You'll hate it. It won't ride, shift, or brake as well as a better bike. Do you buy the cheapest car on the lot because it is the cheapest, or do you buy the one with the goodies on it you like? I thought so. Learn to pay for it. You will enjoy the R.O.I. If you don't know what that is, go buy the $400 bike!

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Favorite Trail:   most fire roads in marin county

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $735.00

Purchased At:   Pacific Bicycle

Similar Products Used:   Specialized Rockhopper, Giant Rainier, Trek 6700

Bike Setup:   Stock, except for new saddle and toe clip pedals

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Mark Motto a Weekend Warrior from Albuquerque,NM

Date Reviewed: July 11, 2003

Strengths:    The frame is bullet proof. Gary Fisher's gold series American made aluminum frame is rock solid. The components, when adjusted properly, worked well.

Weaknesses:    The seat was a little to hard for my kiester, I opted for a
Serfas anatomical seat....ahhhh much better! The bike is not exactly a light-weight machine.


Bottom Line:   
The Hoo Koo E Koo (affectionately known as the Hoochie-coochie) is a solid bike for the price. I got a smokin'deal on this one at the Cycle Cave (I recommend this shop.) For riding X/C, hardpack or as an urban warrior, this bike is
bomb proof. I woudln't try it on serious down-hill. I think
the frame could handle it fine but aggressive down-hilllers
may need a more advanced ride. For beginner to intermediate
level riders this is alot of "bang for the buck" The Manitou
shock worked well for my size/weight 5' 8" 160# I had to replace the seat...its just too hard for longer rides. The Serfas seats work great for about 25 bucks. I also opted out of the clipless pedals for std ones. Make sure your shop sets up the bike and componentry properly. Some folks have had trouble with the brakes but I have not experienced this. I ride 80-100 miles per week on pavement, hard-pack trails and some X/C.
Small jumps are a blast. I liked the Giant xtc2 just a tad better but it was almost 250 bucks more. The Paint on the 2003 HKEK is pretty cool too. Overall, for just under 700 dollars, I couldn't find a better machine and a lifetime warranty on the frame to boot!

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Bosque/Rio Grande

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $698.00

Purchased At:   Cycle Cave in Albuquerque, NM

Similar Products Used:   Trek 6000, Giant XTC2

Bike Setup:   stock except Serfas seat and std pedals

Reviews 1 - 15 (24 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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