28 of 32 people found the following review helpful
Updated product review,
OK, this review is to update my previous review given several months to ride this bike and see what and how. Previously I gave this bike a near perfect review. I was wrong. To be near perfect one needs to make a few inexpensive changes. I will list the strengths and weaknesses and what I replaced to improve this bike.
I will start with the strengths. The GMC Denali bicycle is a great deal, if you just cant spend more on a bicycle. For the price of this bike you can get, like three of them before you can buy a "better" road bike. The frame is strong and reasonably lightweight, especially for what it cost. The seat is great. I like the handlebars and the pedals. I don't need, or wish, to clip in to bicycle pedals. The wheels are thin but fast. I have added slightly bigger tires because I like them better than the ultra thin tires that come from the factory. The best part about this bike is it really looks great and you can fix the weaknesses pretty cheap to have a darn great bicycle.
Weaknesses: My biggest gripe with the GMC (Pacific) Denali is the chain and gears. The rear gears are garbage. They are bad from the first day you ride this bike. I am a big guy who can generate a lot of power on a bicycle drive train. What that means is that the chain jumps off of the sprocket on the back wheel and you might just kill yourself. Yes, the chain can't hold that cheap set of gears on the back wheel so what happens when you go for quick acceleration you make lots of noise and embarrass yourself. I replaced the rear sprockets and bought a good chain for around forty bucks. I removed the plastic chain guard on the rear wheel and on the front sprockets. They are trash and break instantly.
The rear "indexed" derailer is the cheapest one Shimano makes. But, it works OK so I kept it. I did however get rid of the grip "indexed" shifters on the handlebars. I replaced them with the old fashioned shifters like came on my old Schwinn from 1970 something. I discovered that I ride in high gear or in mid range. I don't need the indexing and the twist shifters on the handlebars were miserable. That fix was real cheap. I also kept the kick stand but lost the reflectors.
With these changes made I think the Denali is a great bike. The guy at the local bike shop showed me what to look for etc.. He said that these bikes are actually made by Pacific. Pacific makes a whole long list of bikes under lots of brand names to include Schwinn and everything sold at the huge retailers like Wally World. He said the frames are great but that they go cheap on the details. Some of those details don't make or break your bike. Others are really irritating. So, if you want a sweet ride get the Denali and spend a few extra bucks to upgrade the rear sprockets and chain, the shifters and tires are slightly more about personal preference, but I recommend it. Before I wouldn't trust this bike to get me across town.
My total cost for the upgrades I wanted was around a hundred bucks and I did the work.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 28, 2007 6:48:58 PM PDT
J. Liang says:
No, this bike is made by Kent (which is even worse than Pacific).
Posted on Sep 23, 2007 1:20:09 PM PDT
M. Myers says:
With what you spent on the bike plus the hundred bucks, you could have found a nice used bike. There are bike shop quality bikes available BRAND NEW on eBay for not about what you've spent. Search for Windsor or Motobecane.
Posted on Oct 6, 2012 10:26:51 PM PDT
My freewheel broke. What freewheel remover do I need? There are many kind but idk which fits mine.
My axle for the rear wheel also broke. What kind of axle do I need that will fit?
Also what crank remover do I need to remove the crank?
In reply to an earlier post on Jan 23, 2014 9:59:51 AM PST
Jason Marini says:
I took this apart to re-lube it, so I had to get the equipment.
Park Tool FR-1 fits this freewheel. Park Tool CCP-22 gets the cranks off.
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