Words and photos by Félicien Goguey (@twowheelsonedarklord)
I’m Félicien, a French artist and designer who’s been living and working in Geneva, Switzerland, for seven years. Bikes have been a growing interest over the last years. It all started with commuting and then went from cargo hauling to traveling, bikepacking, and gravel adventures. More recently, I got into road and track cycling.
I realized a couple of years ago the balance cycling could bring in my life, especially in managing mental health, when I found myself in an almost meditative state while riding in the magnificent forests of the Jura. It then took a more and more important part of my free time. Repairing, building, and riding bikes helped me to cope with this weird year that began with a broken collar bone and went as you all know, among other things. Now that I can ride again, I find myself very lucky with the surrounding mountains and landscapes, and I try to go for long rides or weekend adventures as often as possible.
I’ve been looking for a steel GT bike for a long time because of their iconic triple triangle geometry. When I found a 1992 (my year of birth) GT Avalanche for 20 bucks on Anibis (local Craiglist), I couldn’t believe it and immediately called the seller. He actually ended giving it to me, leaving it on his front door while he went for a walk in the countryside. The bike was in poor shape, with a seized bottom bracket that I had to dissolve in caustic soda, so I decided to renew it totally and turn it into a flat-bar gravel commuter.
I went to 3spades workshop here in Geneva, where Mario did an amazing job brazing a disc tab and a few mounts. Then, it got a sparkling black metal paint job, inspired by the black metal and drone music that also constitutes a big part of my life. I converted the bike to 650B wheels to run narrower tires while keeping the geometry right for commuting and bikepacking (can still fit 48mm with mudguards).
- Frame 1992 GT Avalanche True Temper GTX
- Fork Velo Orange Piolet 26”
- Rims Velocity Aileron 650B silver
- Hubs Shutter Precision PD8 (front) / Hope Pro 4 (rear)
- Tires Panaracer GravelKing 42mm
- Handlebars Nitto B814
- Headset Velo Orange Grand Cru
- Crankset Shimano Deore XT w/ Stridsland 94BCD 38T chainring
- Pedals Shimano PD-EH500
- Cassette Shimano SLX CS-M7000-11 11-46
- Derailleur Shimano SLX RD-M7000-11-GS
- Brakes Juin Tech R1 / Tektro 372A levers
- Shifter(s) Shimano SLX SL-M7000-11-R
- Saddle Brooks C17 All Weather
- Seatpost Nitto S65 26.8 mm
- Stem Parts bin CrMo stem
- Front bags bigxtop custom randonneur bag
- Rear bags Road Runner Drafter
- Lights Supernova E3 Pro 2 / SON Rear Light Seatpost mounting
- Other accessories Rawland Raidoverks Rack, Crane bell, Velo Orange fenders, King Cages
Thanks to Matias Stridsland’s amazing narrow-wide 94BCD chainring, I was able to keep the Deore XT crankset, the only original component remaining along with QR skewers. I also used sodium hydroxide to unpolish the VO fenders and get this raw cold metal look, matching the matte silver Velocity rims and contrasting with the shiny paint job. It’s my do-it-all bike, that I commute on every day. The Black Goat is not the lightest but is pretty agile and so much fun to ride.
PS: I’m actually looking for a GT stamped CrMo silver stem if anyone has one lying around!
You can see more from Félicien on Instagram @twowheelsonedarklord.
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