a Weekend Warrior
from Vineland, NJ, USA
Date Reviewed: September 7, 2010
Strengths: Gears shift smoothly/quickly, sturdy feel, shocks are decent, brakes are decent. Very comfortable riding position. Also, the paint finish and welds, were very nicely done.
Weaknesses: Haven't found one yet
Very nice bike. I took it on some hard rides. The bike exceeded my expectations. No problems in the 3 months I had it so far. I would highly recommend this bike to someone looking in the $500-$600 price range.
Weaknesses: weight of the frame (see product strengths above). Not compatible with modern braking systems.
Pretty much wore and tore all of the original components, which have been replaced several times over. I think the only original parts still remaining are the frame, forks and seat post. Crashed it several times. It has been ridden on pavement, fire roads, mud and sand for nearly 20 years. I went bike shopping last month. Nothing rode as solid as the old Avalanche. Ended up buying new tires and drivetrain parts for her instead. Best bike ever.
Found a brand new 96 avalanche in basement when i started working at bike shop in 06. Made it mine, and love everything about it. exept no disc brake mount on the frame. but oh well, canti brakes are working just fine for me. performs as good as the newest 08 bikes from cannondale, fisher, ext. glad i found this old jem.
a Cross Country Rider
from Northern Virginia
Date Reviewed: October 13, 2007
Strengths: Tough, workhorse of a frame; came w/ good mix of parts
Weaknesses: Stock Kore Lite stem (single bolt clamp design) couldn't be used with risers; not made anymore...at least not like it was in the '90s
Ah, the good ol' days, when GTs were made in the U.S., came stock with good components, and the local shop wasn't a national chain. Oh well, this frame delivers, time and time again. I replaced almost everything on it due to wear and tear (including the derailleur hangar, and almost all the hardware), or just for want of something better (the flatbar only stem, rigid fork). Some of the old parts (or at least their brands) live on in upgrades -- folding VelociRaptors, Kore Elite stem, etc. The frame continues to this day, abeit with lots of scratches, scrapes, dings, and a few dents. Sometimes I really wish it was painted, and I guess it's kind of heavy, but if it was lighter would I still be riding it?
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: May 15, 2007
Strengths: Generally robust bike
Weaknesses: Seat retaining bolt
Until this weekend, I cannot deny that I was very happy with my purchase. However this sunday, while returning home after a gentle off road session, I was sitting upright on the seat peddling with one hand resting lightly on the handlebars when there was a loud sound followed by me being instantly deposited on the ground behind the bike resulting in a broken wrist. The bolt retaining the seat had sheared. I would caution others to review this bolt since it is the only one retaining the seat.
from Miami, FL, US of A
Date Reviewed: October 5, 2006
Strengths: The frame arrangement and stiffness.
Weaknesses: None, nada, x-ney, negative.
This bike is probably the best performing bike I have ridden... and I have ridden many. I no longer race but since 1997 to 2001 it was my racing partner. I have placed 16 overall in NORBA Florida Ford series races and always used this frame... Spent lotsa mony on it and would do it all over again. THIS GT WAS MADE WHEN GT WAS GT. MADE IN THE USA. UNLIKE THE CURRENT FOEIGN MADE GTs WHICH SUCK AND ARE PURCHASED AT YOUR LOCAL SAMS CLUB....WHAT AN INSULT...
Bike Setup: Race face headset& seat post, all XTR components exept for rear brake, Crossmaxx w/1.95 IRC tubbed, wtb Ti seat, scott grips, teflon lined cables, 100mm dual-air race rockshox, (still ride the 8 Gear cog not the 9 gear XTR) but made of light metal. The only original thing in this bike is the frame.....I would not trade it for anything else short of another Avalanche frame...
Date Reviewed: January 3, 2003
Strengths: I really learned to ride on this bike. Climbs great, take alot of abuse without blinking. I recently bought a K2 razorback (which I also love), but I still like to take take the Avalanche out and beat the crap out of it.
Weaknesses: Mounts for disc brakes would be nice, but who expects that on a 1998(?) frame.
Indestructable all around hardtail. I was the 2nd owner (it was the LBS's owner's personal bike-who also beat the crap out of it) and in 3 years of hard climbing, tech downhilling, and biblical crashing the frame is as good as new. And to think I almost sold it to help pay for new bike...now IT'S NOT FOR SALE.
Similar Products Used: K2 Razorback (similar??, 5x more expensive!!)
Bike Setup: The original frame and whatever parts get handed down from the K2
a Weekend Warrior
from Cambridge, UK
Date Reviewed: December 10, 2002
Strengths: Strong frame, takes plenty of urban punishment without a whimper. Lasted me ten years, and the guy before me wasn't gentle, I don't think...
Weaknesses: That said, broke a rear dropout a few years ago... difficult to upgrade single parts due to frame geometry, you end up replacing everything the dud part is connected to. Cheesy 1980's paint job.
This was my first real bike, and I remember going to the shop where it was being sold in my home town of Canberra almost every day. This was in '93 when mountain biking was just taking off in a big way, and my choices were this somwhat battered second hand GT Avo or a Diamond Back Ascent. I am thankful to this day that I chose the Avo. I discovered fairly quickly that I don't have the reflexes for MTB riding, a few expensive crashes taught me that! So I now have it set up as a commuter machine, or "bikepath basher", as the mechanic at my bike shop called it. Lots of nice high gears and skinny slicks and it really moves, despite being heavy and me making no concessions to saving weight
It's even followed me over in a bike box to England where I currently use it in bike friendly Cambridge, cycling 70+ miles a week commuting to and from work. I doubt I could have bought a bike of similar quality here for what I would have saved had I not brought it over. There's nothing at all wrong with the frame (as far as I know) save my broken dropout a few years ago. It will last as long as my bank balance can afford putting new componentry on it every few years. I like to compare it (favourably, of course) to the Millenium Falcon - it doesn't look very pretty, but I always shell out a little extra to get if not the best componentry then the second best, and it's capable of some pretty slick moves should I put my foot down
A little reminiscence there, perhaps, but my Avo has been a part of my life for the last ten years and I think you could expect the same sort of reliability that I have experienced since I bought it, should you invest in one of these superb GT frames. Okay, commuting was never what it was designed for, but if you don't want to stress over what dropping off gutters and going down stairs etc is doing to your frame, go for the GT brand
Bike Setup: 1989 (yes,1989) CroMo frame, last of the fully Japanese GT frames, bought second hand in Aus in 1993 for $800. Came with Suntour stuff and a Girvin flexstem. The only stuff still on there other than the frame are the saddle and the bloody indestructible Mavic front rim. Now have a mix of XT and LX componentry, running Michelin WildGripper City and Hutchie Top Slicks. Fave bit are these huge brake levers, for the full hand. Very OTT. Mid range Shimano SPDs.
Date Reviewed: May 24, 2002
Strengths: BOMBPROOF frameset! I have tried to break this frame. I only was able to dent it once and that was coming off a large rock where the frame under all my weight actually hit and scraped across the rock!
Weaknesses: a LITTLE heavy, I hate people that knock a frame like this and say it is oh so heavy, these people are just WEAK!
If you want to build a bombproof XC rig for a great price find one of the older Avalanche frames, they will not die.
Similar Products Used: GT Zaskar, Cannondale Killer V9000
Bike Setup: Full XTR with 517 rims, Panaracer Fire XC 2.1's, Titec post, WTB seat, Easton bars. Very SWEET RIDE
from Bergheim - Good ol´ Germany
Date Reviewed: August 8, 2001
Strengths: I own both Avalanches: In 1989 I got my first one made of TANGE Prestige-Steel, now I have the newest alloy-version, and BOTH are the best frames I ever saw and rode. Stiff and heavy, yes, but whatever you do (and I´ve done a lot), you will NEVER (!!!!!) brake the frame. There´s only one thing that´s better than owning a GT: Owning two GTs!
Weaknesses: There aren´t any, except the weight. But be honest: Who cares?
If god was a biker - he proudly would ride to hell with his GT. Doesn´t GT stand for "God´s Touch"?
Similar Products Used: Germany´s VOTEC-bikes are okay.
Bike Setup: Not the newest, far from the lightest: Rock Shox, Magura Race-Line, Deore XT II - Shifter (yes, still the best), Onza Porcupine-tires in white, Onza barends, XT II - crankset, Flite Titanium etc.. Don´t use expensive but weak parts. Better stay heavy, these parts won´t brake.
from San Antonio
Date Reviewed: July 1, 2001
Strengths: Bulletproof frame that handles like a jet fighter on the singletrack. I ride this thing through the worst rock gardens, haul ass down the downhills, and have crashed pretty damn hard. Other than a few dings, this frame looks as solid as ever after 5 (!) years of hardcore abuse. If you want to save money, buy yourself a cheap frame that breaks. If you want a rig to dust your friends with, buy an avalanche. It's worth it. Some people say this frame is a bit heavy. Considering how burly it is, this frame is light.
Weaknesses: This frame is friggin addictive !!!!!!!!!!!
Don't be fooled by people who complain about this frame because they got burned on some components. Components brake, and they always will. This frame, however, LASTS. It simply hauls ass and corners like a razor blade. I'll never give this frame away.
Bike Setup: Cook Bros F cranks,Bontrager Mustang rims, XT drivetrain, Avid Archrival Brakes, CT2 post, Selle Flite Ti, Weight: 24 pounds.
a Weekend Warrior
from Asheville, NC
Date Reviewed: May 28, 2001
I purchased this bike 10 years ago for transportation and an occasional weekend trip. Aside from several new sets of tires and a bent up front derailer, I have never, EVER had problem one with this bike. I'm not sure how many '91 Avalanches there are out there, but I garantee that those that own them say the same thing. This is a phenomenal bike. I may not be the most aggressive trail hound, but I can attest to the longevity of the product. If I were to purchase another MB, there is no question it would be an Avalanche.
Just got my new bike yesterday and I love it so far. I just have one question.. Are new disk brakes suppose to squeal if there is no pressure going to them? It happens if I am or am not peddling. Any ideas what I should do to remedy this squeak???? :idea:Read More »
I have decided to buy my first bike in 20 years. I am about 6'0 tall, 250lbs and a 30 inch inseam. I am trying to lose weight and get into better shape riding first on the road and maybe later on the trails. I would like to buy a used bike to get a better value. I am looking at two and wonder which ... Read More »
I destroyed my current bike, a Trek 3900. Always had problems with this bike, so its time for me to get another one anyways.
So I am looking and will probably get this bike.
Performance bikes is also off ... Read More »
I picked up this bike locally and might end up selling it. So I figured I'd ask for some opinions on what its worth. Its a GT Avalanche "All Terra" Competition. Has Shimano Diore LX shifters, Magnesium Rock-Shox, tires look ok, and probably needs to be "tuned up".
I was look ... Read More »