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  1. #1
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    The Journeyman.

    Just saw the roll-out on the Journeyman. Nice job Salsa. They'll likely sell as many of these as they can keep in stock. The 650b model is exceptionally appealing. I know some folks will be less than excited about the spec on these but I'm fine with it. I say, ride the stuff until it doesn't work then replace it with what you want. I really like the crank they used with 46/30 gearing. I used to run that with a 7 spd 12/28 freewheel on my rando bike and it was perfect. An 11/32 cassette is obviously more appropriate for this bike. And of course, nothing wrong with going even lower, say 36t low gear on cassette.

    For myself I don't know that I'd get one of these due to the aluminum frame and carbon fork. I'm not a fan of either. But it certainly wouldn't be an expensive "experiment" to check one of these out. And reselling it wouldn't be hard.
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    Haha you beat me to starting a thread, here's some pics of the Claris model, 700c and 650B The Journeyman.-20180317_142639_hdr.jpg

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    I love that they also are selling a flat-bar version of the Journeyman. My initial reaction was "WOW", then "I wish it was steel instead of aluminum" and then I realized if it was steel, it wouldn't be much different than the Karate Monkey I already own. I hope I can find a flat-bar version in my size to test ride.

  4. #4
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    Would be a great bike in Ti, frame/fork only, to build up with high end components.

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    It's a great bike for the price and I really like 9 speed stuff. It's tough for the main part and gets the job done without fuss. I would be really interested in the black flat bar model if I wasn't piecing together an equivilent bike from parts.

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    So I've been eyeing the Jamis Renegade and the Salsa Journeyman. Any opinions on thru axles vs the quick disconnect?

    My current bikes all have quick disconnects but the trend seems to be towards thru axles. I wonder why Salsa went quick disconnect?

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    Quote Originally Posted by fshnfvr View Post
    I wonder why Salsa went quick disconnect?
    I suspect because the Journeyman is a budget friendly bike and thru-axles and thru-axles dropouts are more expensive to manufacture. Plus, bikes get along fine without thru-axles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by fshnfvr View Post
    So I've been eyeing the Jamis Renegade and the Salsa Journeyman. Any opinions on thru axles vs the quick disconnect?

    My current bikes all have quick disconnects but the trend seems to be towards thru axles. I wonder why Salsa went quick disconnect?
    Budget honestly, I think someone already mentioned that, but for the bike and what it offers, it has a lot going for itself. I think this bike is one that at its price point, you can't go wrong with it. I also think that it can run 27x2.5 or 29x2.25, maybe I'm crazy. However I might be able to test this later today and snap some pics of my results.

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    Yeah, I'm sure it's to meet the pricepoint. 8 and 9-speed drivetrains, 1 1/8 steerer tubes, QR hubs, threaded BB shells and the like are all good, proven components.

    All of that stuff would make me want to buy this bike, rather than hold out for a bike with thru-axles, as you have such a wide range of options for upgrade and replacement parts.

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    This bike checks all of the boxes I was looking for in a budget friendly anyroad ride. I was seriously considering a flat bar cross check prior to this, even a steamroller, but I think I'll be getting my first salsa.
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    Quote Originally Posted by cassa89 View Post
    This bike checks all of the boxes I was looking for in a budget friendly anyroad ride. I was seriously considering a flat bar cross check prior to this, even a steamroller, but I think I'll be getting my first salsa.
    be careful,buying a salsa is a slippery slope...i got a bucksaw cheap,really liked it,bought a fargo,really like that bike...then bought a ti timberjack....

    turns out salsa makes pretty dang good bikes,in many ways they have replaced my surlys....that said,i have no intention of getting rid of my surlys,being surly frames,what they are can be changed simply by swapping bits and bobs and tires...

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    I am strongly looking at one of these to replace my Crossrip. The idea of the 650 is the exact bike I want my Crossrip to be but the tire clearance isn't there.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Irongrave View Post
    I am strongly looking at one of these to replace my Crossrip. The idea of the 650 is the exact bike I want my Crossrip to be but the tire clearance isn't there.
    How much tire clearance are you looking for? Also, dropbars or flats?

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    All...so I'm looking to buy my first gravel bike for commuting (3miles one-way) and the off days on gravel trails and some clean singletrack where the gnarly MTB trails are washed out. I'm not looking to put up large mileage here.

    My trail bike is 27.5 x 2.6 tires full squish. And I see all the rage right now with 650B x 2.1"+ or 700c x 40 for gravel bike. I'm thinking 650B x 2.1" is pretty much a XC mountain bike and too close to my trail bike. So something like 700C x 40 makes more sense? Only thing is I'm 5'5".

    But I find it odd that MTB the rage is 29er right now, from XC to Enduro and even some DH rigs, while it seems with gravel 650B (27.5) is the rage.

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    So has anyone ridden or bought a Journeyman yet? For some reason I'm drawn to this bike even though I don't really need another bike in the quiver. I have a Surly LHT with S&S couplers that I use for international touring duty already so this bike is somewhat redundant. However, on my last tour while in Spain my wife and our friends brought regular road bikes with racks while I was on the iron pig. It sure would be nice to go a bit lighter if I don't need to utilize the couplers to save on airfare.
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    I rode both 700c and 650B, I think for the money abd the market they are aiming for, it's a great buy. You can multiple size tires, handles good, I'd opt fir the sora model if I was in the market for a gravel/adventure bike.
    Quote Originally Posted by Motorep View Post
    So has anyone ridden or bought a Journeyman yet? For some reason I'm drawn to this bike even though I don't really need another bike in the quiver. I have a Surly LHT with S&S couplers that I use for international touring duty already so this bike is somewhat redundant. However, on my last tour while in Spain my wife and our friends brought regular road bikes with racks while I was on the iron pig. It sure would be nice to go a bit lighter if I don't need to utilize the couplers to save on airfare.
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    Large 650 Journeyman w wood chipper bars & maxxis Forekaster tires

    The Journeyman.-a5bd623a-2276-4e3e-9cda-a39ad294808a.jpg

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    My riding buddy has a 700c sora journeyman. It's an excellent bike for the price and rides really really well. I tried to order one 2 weeks ago from my local bike shop and was informed that there are no in stock journeymen in the biggest 3 sizes and that won't change until late august/early september.

    I ended up ordering a giant toughroad instead.

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    got mine!

    The Journeyman.-20180517_163258.jpg

    my new to me Journeyman. I'm 6' and the 57mm fits great. got the 650b model and really line the way it handles, disc brakes are awesome. that said I found a good deal on some sram rival hydraulic shifter/ brakes and will be going to a 1 by setup with shimano 46 tooth rear, nx long cage derailuer and 32 tooth crank to better handle the mountain's here.

    also ordered a Revalant half frame bag and I'll be set to do some bike packing this summer! very happy with this bike and the price!

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    57mm size for 6’ tall rider

    Quote Originally Posted by etacata View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

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    my new to me Journeyman. I'm 6' and the 57mm fits great. got the 650b model and really line the way it handles, disc brakes are awesome. that said I found a good deal on some sram rival hydraulic shifter/ brakes and will be going to a 1 by setup with shimano 46 tooth rear, nx long cage derailuer and 32 tooth crank to better handle the mountain's here.

    also ordered a Revalant half frame bag and I'll be set to do some bike packing this summer! very happy with this bike and the price!
    Tetcata, I agree, my 57mm shown above. I am about 5’11”, and tried 3 sizes before settling on the 57mm as the most comfortable size. A really fun bike so far & solid price performer!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fatbikefan View Post
    Tetcata, I agree, my 57mm shown above. I am about 5’11”, and tried 3 sizes before settling on the 57mm as the most comfortable size. A really fun bike so far & solid price performer!
    looks like you have woodchipper bars on yourJourneyman. can you share your thoughts on them vs the cowbell? I'm interested in trying some out.

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    Waiting to order a 650b sora... Looks like QBP is out of the 54. I want to run it 700, but dig the colorway on the 650b sora, and have some 700's that'll fit!

    Anyone know when salsa should be putting out the next batch?

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    Quote Originally Posted by MudderNutter View Post
    Waiting to order a 650b sora... Looks like QBP is out of the 54. I want to run it 700, but dig the colorway on the 650b sora, and have some 700's that'll fit!

    Anyone know when salsa should be putting out the next batch?
    No date on it yet. Might be a bit

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vto2.0 View Post
    No date on it yet. Might be a bit

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    Bummer... I'll just keep living vicariously through you guys! Unless I talk myself into another bike before then

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    Quote Originally Posted by MudderNutter View Post
    Waiting to order a 650b sora... Looks like QBP is out of the 54. I want to run it 700, but dig the colorway on the 650b sora, and have some 700's that'll fit!

    Anyone know when salsa should be putting out the next batch?
    My LBS stated end of august at the earliest. I didn't believe them so I called salsa and they confirmed the same. Scope the giant toughroad if you're looking for something in the next few months. I ended up with one of those and when comparing it to my buddies journeyman, the bikes are very very similar. The giant gets a small nod for value for money, but loses the same nod for not being as cool of a brand.

    http://forums.mtbr.com/gravel-bikes/...d-1078657.html

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    Quote Originally Posted by minimusprime View Post
    My LBS stated end of august at the earliest. I didn't believe them so I called salsa and they confirmed the same. Scope the giant toughroad if you're looking for something in the next few months. I ended up with one of those and when comparing it to my buddies journeyman, the bikes are very very similar. The giant gets a small nod for value for money, but loses the same nod for not being as cool of a brand.

    http://forums.mtbr.com/gravel-bikes/...d-1078657.html
    I do like that tough road! My situation is a little odd because I get a discount at QBP, so I’m trying to stay in that realm... kind of looking at cross checks and vayas, but I really like the value of the Journeyman.


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    Quote Originally Posted by MudderNutter View Post
    I do like that tough road! My situation is a little odd because I get a discount at QBP, so I’m trying to stay in that realm... kind of looking at cross checks and vayas, but I really like the value of the Journeyman.


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    Do you want a bike that will allow for a bigger volume tire? If so, the vaya is a good choice, if yo do not need a big volume tire, there's the Straggler or midnight special.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vto2.0 View Post
    Do you want a bike that will allow for a bigger volume tire? If so, the vaya is a good choice, if yo do not need a big volume tire, there's the Straggler or midnight special.

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    I don’t have a need for a very large tire. Just up to 40c at the largest. I want it to serve as my “road bike”, gravel grinder, and commuter. I have an el mariachi for anything that would require a bigger tire. I get spun out on the el mar commuting, but don’t want to make it 2x.

    The goal is to keep the cost low, but get a versatile bike that is enjoyable to ride.


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    Woodchipper vs Cowbell

    Quote Originally Posted by etacata View Post
    looks like you have woodchipper bars on yourJourneyman. can you share your thoughts on them vs the cowbell? I'm interested in trying some out.
    I also changed out the stock 90mm stem for a shorter 35 degree stem which raised and shortened my reach on my size 57 journeyman. I feel this coupled with the 2.35mm Foercaster tires gives me an Aluminum Fargo geometry! Light, compliant and a more mountain bike feel for still a gravel bike which you can load all the bikepacking gear you want. My other two rides are an original Blackborow fatbike & a new Surly Krampus, so I wanted a gravel/mountain bike ride. I do like the woodchippers, it seems they give a bit more range of grip vs cowbell.

  30. #30
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    I am going to go test ride a 700c Claris this weekend.

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    Quote Originally Posted by minimusprime View Post
    My riding buddy has a 700c sora journeyman. It's an excellent bike for the price and rides really really well. I tried to order one 2 weeks ago from my local bike shop and was informed that there are no in stock journeymen in the biggest 3 sizes and that won't change until late august/early september.

    I ended up ordering a giant toughroad instead.
    What size frame and configuration do you need?

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    Quote Originally Posted by corwin1968 View Post
    I love that they also are selling a flat-bar version of the Journeyman. My initial reaction was "WOW", then "I wish it was steel instead of aluminum" and then I realized if it was steel, it wouldn't be much different than the Karate Monkey I already own. I hope I can find a flat-bar version in my size to test ride.
    I almost got the FB Journeyman to replace the KM I use for commuting. But realised that the cheap frame likely would save much weight and there are NO options for aftermarket carbon forks with the same specs as the stock fork (which was something I wanted). So I'd effectively be building a new bike for slightly more frame bag space.

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    Be interested to hear your thoughts on the bike. I am waiting to demo a Journeyman Claris 650 Flat Bar


    Quote Originally Posted by BurkC View Post
    I am going to go test ride a 700c Claris this weekend.

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  34. #34
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    Picked up my Journeyman over the weekend to go along with a '14Vaya that is now more for street duty. First ride and am pretty happy with the new ride.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails The Journeyman.-apc_3149-hdr.jpg  


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    Which version is that? Your rear frame triangle seems to have a big curve and sweep to it near the rear hub and the others bikes posted above (green and blue) have sharp angles / straight lines.

    Quote Originally Posted by lb2 View Post
    Picked up my Journeyman over the weekend to go along with a '14Vaya that is now more for street duty. First ride and am pretty happy with the new ride.

  36. #36
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    I think it's the Sora 700. I wonder if the frame is made like that because it's a smaller size? Like <52

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  37. #37
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    newking- BurkC is spot on, white frame are the Sora700, it's a 52cm frame.

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    Pictures don't do it justice

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    Nice looking bike, looks pink on the salsa website but more rose colored in your pic. Be interested to hear how the 1x gearing is on road, mixed gravel and singletrack.

    I have always been a 1x rider but was thinking the 46/30 gearing on the Flat bar Claris bike would cover a big range.



    Quote Originally Posted by Vto2.0 View Post
    Pictures don't do it justice

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    Quote Originally Posted by newking View Post
    Nice looking bike, looks pink on the salsa website but more rose colored in your pic. Be interested to hear how the 1x gearing is on road, mixed gravel and singletrack.

    I have always been a 1x rider but was thinking the 46/30 gearing on the Flat bar Claris bike would cover a big range.
    I will update if I end up buying this, I'm still debating between this or the cutthroat, but if end up with this one, it will be an epic ride I'll say.

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    Let me know how you make out. Cutthroat is a nice bike but seems pricy. I was thinking of adding a gravel bike not as my main ride, more of a secondary option.

    Was thinking the Journeyman with a few nice upgrades and pair of 2nd wheels comes in well under $2K.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vto2.0 View Post
    I will update if I end up buying this, I'm still debating between this or the cutthroat, but if end up with this one, it will be an epic ride I'll say.

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    Quote Originally Posted by newking View Post
    Let me know how you make out. Cutthroat is a nice bike but seems pricy. I was thinking of adding a gravel bike not as my main ride, more of a secondary option.

    Was thinking the Journeyman with a few nice upgrades and pair of 2nd wheels comes in well under $2K.
    I think that's what I will be doing, getting the 700c Apex1 model swapping a few things, getting a second wheelset and saving my chips, I'm really digging this color

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vto2.0 View Post
    I think that's what I will be doing, getting the 700c Apex1 model swapping a few things, getting a second wheelset and saving my chips, I'm really digging this color

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    Picked up my Journeyman. I went with the 700 SORA. I'm a Flat bar / gripshift guy so the shop swapped out the triggers for XO1 gripshift and put Teravail Rutland 38 tires on the bike. Tubeless.

    This is my first gravel bike.

    Went for a ride yesterday - did 19 miles of pavement, gravel, singletrack, fire roads and all types of mixed surfaces. Had a blast. Bike handled great

    This is a great low cost bike that is very versatile. I plan on riding this without any loops or routes in mind, just going to throw a leg over it and start riding and go wherever it takes me and explore.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails The Journeyman.-salsa.jpg  


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    Quote Originally Posted by newking View Post
    Picked up my Journeyman. I went with the 700 SORA. I'm a Flat bar / gripshift guy so the shop swapped out the triggers for XO1 gripshift and put Teravail Rutland 38 tires on the bike. Tubeless.

    This is my first gravel bike.

    Went for a ride yesterday - did 19 miles of pavement, gravel, singletrack, fire roads and all types of mixed surfaces. Had a blast. Bike handled great

    This is a great low cost bike that is very versatile. I plan on riding this without any loops or routes in mind, just going to throw a leg over it and start riding and go wherever it takes me and explore.
    Love the colorway. Dont love the grips. LOL

    Seriously, you will love this bike. I have a Vaya and havent ridden my MTB much since I got it

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  46. #46
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    picked up my Sora 650(57cm) in March. Very few rides yet as the snow has finally been melting but I plan to get out tomorrow before we get more snow next week
    Enjoy the ride...

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    Very new to riding with any regularity and I am really looking into this bike for it functionality and adaptability. I was wondering how many riders actully switch out the wheel sizes or just ride what you brought and also why flat vs drop bar. My current and only bike is a 26" MTB with flat bars and I have no idea what direction I would go for an All Road bike.
    Thanks!
    Paul

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    I've had mine for a few weeks and have several rides on it. I Demo'ed the bike with 650B wheels and it felt fast and nimble. I ended up deciding to go with the 700CC Wheelset as it wanted to do some road rides, some gravel and some all road.

    Part of the decision was that I have had two 650B mountain bikes and always came back to the 29er as preferred wheel size and it just seems better overall.

    I tried another gravel bike with drop bars and did not like the handling on downhill singletrack, so I went with the flat bars. Much easier to brake, steer and shift. I put bar ends on my bike.

    Rides like a dream, I did a 20 mile road ride (not a roadie), singltrack ride and all road ride and the bike is master of none but good all around at most everything else.

    Enjoy


    Quote Originally Posted by Frenchman83 View Post
    Very new to riding with any regularity and I am really looking into this bike for it functionality and adaptability. I was wondering how many riders actully switch out the wheel sizes or just ride what you brought and also why flat vs drop bar. My current and only bike is a 26" MTB with flat bars and I have no idea what direction I would go for an All Road bike.
    Thanks!

  49. #49
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    mounted my 2.25” Racing Ralphs tubeless and there’s still plenty of room for debris...
    Enjoy the ride...

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    Thanks for the information!
    Paul

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    Does anyone know the internal width of the 700c rims? I want to order tubeless tape and can't seem to find the width to order the right tape. Thanks guys!!

    Loving the bike so far!!

  52. #52
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    650b Claris Flat Bar

    The Journeyman.-journeyman1.jpgThe Journeyman.-jman-front.jpg

    I bought my Journeyman with no plans to go gravel grinding, but instead to create an "urban assault" type setup I could ride on horrible pavement and broken sidewalks, while also being able to put in some fitness miles on the local road routes. I wasn't sure about the Claris drivetrain at first, but it's been fine so far, and honestly all I need for this application. The fact that the stock hubs don't accept a 10+ speed cassette is a good way to hold my upgrade-itis at bay. I did have to swap out the stock bar for a Soma Dream riser bar since my wrists don't get along with anything less than 20 degrees of sweep. I also had to swap out the seatpost/saddle for fit reasons as well. In case anyone is wondering, the Journeyman will clear a 2.35 Schwalbe G-One speed no problem, although I doubt you could fit a tire with tread that size without rubbing. I really like this bike, looking forward to putting in some miles on it this summer.

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    In my view, what sets this bike appart from the competition is the huge clearance. If going with thinner tires and 700c rims, there are nicer bikes like the 2020 Trek Crockett (more expensive however). What appeals to me here are the 650b wheels and 2.1 tires. Here’s my question, are there any other gravel / all-roads bikes on the (US) market with such clearance? I’m not finding any yet.

  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geotrouvetout67 View Post
    In my view, what sets this bike appart from the competition is the huge clearance. If going with thinner tires and 700c rims, there are nicer bikes like the 2020 Trek Crockett (more expensive however). What appeals to me here are the 650b wheels and 2.1 tires. Here’s my question, are there any other gravel / all-roads bikes on the (US) market with such clearance? I’m not finding any yet.
    https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sour...zpJEyBMvfnarBZ

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    Here’s mine. Bought 2nd week of July, have just about 1000 miles on it so far. Did my first ever century with it last weekend. Haven’t been on my mountain bike since I’ve gotten it, really super happy with this bike. All stock at this point.

    Only problem so far was the bottom bracket started clicking. Found that it came loose on the non-drive side, easy peasy. Everything else has been rock solid.

    Only regret, as I have a bit of OCD... the gloss black shows every scratch, swirl mark, or imperfection in the sunlight just like a black car would. But that’s my issue, haha.

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    First impressions

    Thought I'd post mine up....lousy picture but the only one I've got.

    I'm older than dirt and after a crash that ef'd up my shoulder bad, I found that the loose rocks really have me spooked and I was spending all my time on pavement or forest roads, so I figured why not get a bike better suited for that type of riding......lots of research and I settled on the Journeyman Sora build. My first impressions after around 35 miles mixed asphalt and dirt roads:

    It's not the lightest in the class, but it feels like a feather next to my 27.5+ Timberjack

    I think they have the gearing nailed.....I have yet to run out of gears on either end

    First drop bar bike I have had since the shifters were NOT indexed and they were on the downtube.....getting used to the shifting took a bit, but the Sora components shift smoothly without unneeded noises or skips...

    Bike feels nimble and quick on pavement and pretty stable on dirt. Doesn't like sand (that shouldn't surprise anyone)

    The factory seat had to take a hike. I put my Ergon on, but withe the different position, it doesn't work as well as it does on a flat bar for preventing butt pains. Gonna have to find something a bit better (Brooks?)

    The brakes (mechanical disk) are OK, but could be a bit better. Maybe they will continue to seat as they wear.......

    The fit/finish/paint, etc. is outstanding

    The carbon front fork takes some of the rumble out of washboard roads better than I thought it would.....

    The bottle cage mounts at the bottom of the seat tube are pretty useless as the clamp from the front derailleur is between the two screws (at least it is on a 55.5)

    Riding a drop bar puts my arms/shoulders in a different position, and being that I basically do not have functioning rotator cuffs in either shoulder, it is putting a bit of a strain on the other muscles, but I think that will ease off once they get used to it.

    All in all, I think Salsa did a good job with this one....

    YMMV

    Lon
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails The Journeyman.-journeyman.jpg  


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    What's the biggest tire anyone has run on the 700C Journeyman. Looking for real world examples. I put WTB 700 x 45 Riddlers on mine and still seems to be a huge amount of space for something bigger...

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    Quote Originally Posted by newking View Post
    What's the biggest tire anyone has run on the 700C Journeyman. Looking for real world examples. I put WTB 700 x 45 Riddlers on mine and still seems to be a huge amount of space for something bigger...
    I have a friend running WTB ventures 700x50's with clearance and they seem to be just fine for the bike and the riding that's done with them

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  59. #59
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    Considering the 650b sora with drop bars but not sure which frame 50 or 52 as i’m right in the middle at 5’-4”. I have a cycling inseam of 31”. Anyone out there of similar height can give some insight. Thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by csf View Post
    Considering the 650b sora with drop bars but not sure which frame 50 or 52 as i’m right in the middle at 5’-4”. I have a cycling inseam of 31”. Anyone out there of similar height can give some insight. Thanks!
    Your bike shop will be able to direct you to the correct size

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    I have been eyeing the flat bar version really hard this weekend. I have signed up for a gravel ride this May, and my Timberjack is too much bike (3” tires) and my old steel roadie is not enough (23mm). I wish that it came in a 1X build with hydraulic brakes. I also see that the sora flat bar version is going away this year, so the flat bars will only have aluminum forks.

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    Darth
    I love my flat bar. Just not a "drops" kind of guy.

    I added Ridder 45 x 700 tires to give the bike a bit more cushion on the rougher terrain and to run a bit lower pressures.

    Mine is 2x drive train and great for mixed use trails. Brakes seem fine. Everything is easy to upgrade if you wanted to shed some weight and add higher end components.

    Your cost and entry point is much lower on this than something like a "stiggy"The Journeyman.-bike.jpgClick image for larger version. 

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    I have been eyeing the flat bar version really hard this weekend. I have signed up for a gravel ride this May, and my Timberjack is too much bike (3” tires) and my old steel roadie is not enough (23mm). I wish that it came in a 1X build with hydraulic brakes. I also see that the sora flat bar version is going away this year, so the flat bars will only have aluminum forks.

  63. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
    I have been eyeing the flat bar version really hard this weekend. I have signed up for a gravel ride this May, and my Timberjack is too much bike (3” tires) and my old steel roadie is not enough (23mm). I wish that it came in a 1X build with hydraulic brakes. I also see that the sora flat bar version is going away this year, so the flat bars will only have aluminum forks.
    Where did you read they are discontinuing the Flatbar Sora?

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    ^^^ There's no 2020 version listed or for sale anywhere. I don't see any Apex builds either, they all say 2019. Just Sora, Claris, Claris flat bar. I guess they might not be out yet. Someone with dealer insight might know better

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    I'm considering the Journeyman Sora 650b, 52cm. I'm 5'4" and was signed up for the DFW MS150 by my wife. I have a Mongoose cyclocross bike that I would have to more time and money than it may be worth to get it back on the road. Given the more relaxed geometry and wider tires, is there any reason to skip the Journeyman 650b? I have no interest in becoming a roadie, don't do group rides, and would use the Journeyman for the MS150 rides and for days when trails are closed for mountain biking. I find the option to ride gravel and do some bike packing more interesting than a comparably priced road bike with more limited versatility. Anyone feel that the bike should be priced less given the build spec? Cheers!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
    ^^^ There's no 2020 version listed or for sale anywhere. I don't see any Apex builds either, they all say 2019. Just Sora, Claris, Claris flat bar. I guess they might not be out yet. Someone with dealer insight might know better
    For what it's worth, I talked to my shop who reached out to Salsa. They were told that the 2019 model will carry through 2020, no changes, no new release. However, they don't plan to discontinue any of the builds within the Journeyman model.

    I'm pretty close to buying a Sora 650 Flatbar, to explain my interest.

  67. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by TXPABIKER View Post
    I'm considering the Journeyman Sora 650b, 52cm. I'm 5'4" and was signed up for the DFW MS150 by my wife. I have a Mongoose cyclocross bike that I would have to more time and money than it may be worth to get it back on the road. Given the more relaxed geometry and wider tires, is there any reason to skip the Journeyman 650b? I have no interest in becoming a roadie, don't do group rides, and would use the Journeyman for the MS150 rides and for days when trails are closed for mountain biking. I find the option to ride gravel and do some bike packing more interesting than a comparably priced road bike with more limited versatility. Anyone feel that the bike should be priced less given the build spec? Cheers!
    IMO the bike is priced fairly. In the research I've been doing anyway...

    I'm looking for a bike with many of the same considerations you mentioned. I'm not a roadie (never will be). I need something just to rip around on - whether it's into town, with my dog, or when the trails are too sloppy to ride my regular rig on single track. Also, I have an interest to do some bike packing and touring in the future (which is why I don't mind the mechanical disc brake spec), so looking for that versatility too.

    The Journeyman seems to fit all those boxes. The only drawbacks I notice are the QR frame, non tubeless wheelset, and it's slightly heavier (which can be helped with some customization, no biggy)

    It's great that they offer a flat bar geo, one that's actually designed proportionately around flat bars. Although I found other brands offering flat bar builds (Niner RLT 9 Apex Flatbar), they were their drop bar engineered frame, just being sold with flat bars. Definitely something to consider since the top tub length will be way too short for flats and change the fit of the bike. I'm partial to flats because of the all round riding I plan on using the bike for, and having the option to swap on trekking bars for bike touring.

    I would've liked to see some better Shimano builds, but I found a shop that's willing to swap Shimano 105 components, and discount the cost of the Sora components they take off. It's not costing that much more and solves my discontent with Claris and Sora componentry.

    Lastly, I've opted for the 650 for the same reason I want flat bars. I plan to ride this thing anywhere/everywhere, but not so much for long road rides - I'm not into that lycra world. I think the larger tire volume will suit my needs more than smaller 700c rubber. I will add, that the max tire clearance which the Journeyman offers for both 650b/700c, and the compatibility between the two, is a huge plus for me... in the future when I use this rig for some trips, I expect to have a set of both sizes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GeneralGee View Post
    The only drawbacks I notice are the QR frame, non tubeless wheelset, and it's slightly heavier (which can be helped with some customization, no biggy)
    I’m pretty sure the stock wheels feature tubeless compatible WTB ST or STP rims. The tires aren’t tubeless compatible, since they’ve always been wire bead across all models. Salsa even mentions in the spec sheet that the Teravail tires on the latest models are not tubeless compatible. So to switch over you’d need tubeless rim tape, tubeless valves, and new tires (plus sealant, obviously).

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    Quote Originally Posted by 5b00 View Post
    I’m pretty sure the stock wheels feature tubeless compatible WTB ST or STP rims. The tires aren’t tubeless compatible, since they’ve always been wire bead across all models. Salsa even mentions in the spec sheet that the Teravail tires on the latest models are not tubeless compatible. So to switch over you’d need tubeless rim tape, tubeless valves, and new tires (plus sealant, obviously).
    My mistake, thanks for the tip. Nice to know the rims are good to go.

    One thing I would add, I noticed a common theme in most of the Journeyman reviews I read. Many people seemed to have issues with the rear wheel losing spokes early, and complained about the weight of the wheelset as a whole. Also complaints about the rubber. This seemed to be the most common (and only) complaint among reviewers that I came across. And at the price point, I'm not surprised. Just ride'em into the ground and replace with something better.

  70. #70
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    Good to hear about the models carrying on, because I'm still shopping.

    The frames are the star here. They have a lot of nice little features. The rims are tubeless, yes, but the rest of the wheelset is really nothing to write home about. The wheels are the same on all levels too. The tires are not tubeless though they will probably seat up ok and might not seep if you use orange seal. None of the components are that great except maybe the Apex drivetrain, and even there they skipped the hydraulic brakes version. When it comes to the drop bar version you just have to accept that it's the budget alternative and if you want fancier parts you should look at the Warbird. The flat bar version though is pretty unique among hybrids in having such a loooong frame. I do think it really deserves a much different build based on MTB parts.

    I don't think the drop bar version is an especially good deal, when you compare it to say the new Rangefinder that has a better drivetrain and brakes for less money. But this seems to be true in general of road bikes. The flat bar version can be found for less since last summer when Salsa put them on sale. REI for instance still has it at the lower prices.

  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
    Good to hear about the models carrying on, because I'm still shopping.

    The frames are the star here. They have a lot of nice little features. The rims are tubeless, yes, but the rest of the wheelset is really nothing to write home about. The wheels are the same on all levels too. The tires are not tubeless though they will probably seat up ok and might not seep if you use orange seal. None of the components are that great except maybe the Apex drivetrain, and even there they skipped the hydraulic brakes version. When it comes to the drop bar version you just have to accept that it's the budget alternative and if you want fancier parts you should look at the Warbird. The flat bar version though is pretty unique among hybrids in having such a loooong frame. I do think it really deserves a much different build based on MTB parts.

    I don't think the drop bar version is an especially good deal, when you compare it to say the new Rangefinder that has a better drivetrain and brakes for less money. But this seems to be true in general of road bikes. The flat bar version can be found for less since last summer when Salsa put them on sale. REI for instance still has it at the lower prices.
    Personally, I wouldn't suggest going tubeless with a non-tubeless tire. I've read that the tubeless bead is manufactured with other compounds (such as kevlar) that let it stretch while keeping its integrity. I don't think non-tubeless tires are made to stretch throughout their life, and keep that seal. Can't say I've tried it though.

    The problem with the Apex build (which, unfortunately is the only quality build) is that it's a 1x. Since I plan to use this bike for touring, I need at least a 2x up front. That, plus I prefer Shimano over Sram. If you were going strictly gravel rides, I've read it's good.

    As for the brakes? I'm totally willing to give the mechanical disc a shot. If I'm out in the middle of nowhere in another country, with 40 lbs of gear and no bleed kit, I'd prefer the fixability of mechanical. I don't plan putting this bike through any paces (locally) that would warrant hydraulics. I have my Megatower for that.

    Wish I could take advantage of REI, I live in Canada.

  72. #72
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    ^^^ I think maybe it's a better bike for txpabiker than it is for you. The Vaya 105 seems to have everything you are looking for.

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    I test rode a Cannondale Quick 3 at REI today because no one has a Journeyman flat bar in stock around here and I wanted a basis for comparison.

    I was really after the fit and the ride. The bike is roughly similar to the Journeyman. Among hybrids it's one of few that approaches the same steering geometry. Cannondale sizing is in between Salsa's, so the Medium is bang on for my 5ft 8, whereas on the J I'd probably choose a Small. It's still not as long. The bike has a long stem and narrow handlebar, just like old times :-/ The handling was spot on, no issues at all, though I missed the leverage. I feel like the handlebar was mounted upside down on my sample, but the sweep fell easily to hand so it wasn't a huge problem, just made me lean over a little, and since the stem was at max height, that's probably really putting the handlebar right around the middle. The ride was great for a road bike: well planted and stiff without being harsh, though that did bring out my dislike of the tires. It wasn't easy to goof around, I tried some bunny hops and the low stack just kept it from happening. Not helped by a loose right grip.

    The components were not so important...
    Liked: hydraulic brakes, Shimano dual release shifters.
    Didn't like: 30mm narrow tires, felt hard and no pop. Square taper crankset grinding against the FD... just like old times again.
    Normal: 9x11-34 cassette and SIS shifting felt like it always does
    Dumb: 2x system with 50/34 crank. With a flat bar? Come on. Aero rims that were not tubeless.

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
    I test rode a Cannondale Quick 3 at REI today because no one has a Journeyman flat bar in stock around here and I wanted a basis for comparison.

    I was really after the fit and the ride. The bike is roughly similar to the Journeyman. Among hybrids it's one of few that approaches the same steering geometry. Cannondale sizing is in between Salsa's, so the Medium is bang on for my 5ft 8, whereas on the J I'd probably choose a Small. It's still not as long. The bike has a long stem and narrow handlebar, just like old times :-/ The handling was spot on, no issues at all, though I missed the leverage. I feel like the handlebar was mounted upside down on my sample, but the sweep fell easily to hand so it wasn't a huge problem, just made me lean over a little, and since the stem was at max height, that's probably really putting the handlebar right around the middle. The ride was great for a road bike: well planted and stiff without being harsh, though that did bring out my dislike of the tires. It wasn't easy to goof around, I tried some bunny hops and the low stack just kept it from happening. Not helped by a loose right grip.

    The components were not so important...
    Liked: hydraulic brakes, Shimano dual release shifters.
    Didn't like: 30mm narrow tires, felt hard and no pop. Square taper crankset grinding against the FD... just like old times again.
    Normal: 9x11-34 cassette and SIS shifting felt like it always does
    Dumb: 2x system with 50/34 crank. With a flat bar? Come on. Aero rims that were not tubeless.
    Thanks for the writeup. The Quick 1 turned my head, but my interest was eventually cooled (in the whole 'city bike' genre) because it just didn't quite fit the mold. The max tire size, lack of eyelets, shorter wheelbase, wheelset. It's nice that Cannondale specs Shim105 on the top build, but it's not cheap. It comes in at JUST under what I'm paying for my customed out Journeyman. The frame just isn't what I'm looking for. The difference is that I can see myself riding the Journeyman frame (and upgrading) for years, not so with the Quick. If I lived in a city, and needed a bike just for getting around, the Quick would be great.

    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
    ^^^ I think maybe it's a better bike for txpabiker than it is for you. The Vaya 105 seems to have everything you are looking for.
    I actually love the Vaya, and I'm last-minute-torn between it, and the Journeyman. It has everything I want, except for the drop bar. I've never ridden drops before, and I'm not sure I want to commit to that riding position day-to-day, all the time. Also, some of my friends that bike tour a lot, don't like drops for lack of hand holds. They prefer trekking bars or Moloko bars. A flat bar bike (i.e. Journeyman) could easily interchange for these touring bars when going on a tour, not the case with drops.

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    Wondering if anyone knows the (actual) 700c tire clearance on the Journeyman?

    The specs on the website are 32-51mm (1.26-2.0") but I know in reality, it may be a bit larger. I have a pair of Conti Mountain King 29x2.2 and wondering if they would fit.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GeneralGee View Post
    Wondering if anyone knows the (actual) 700c tire clearance on the Journeyman?

    The specs on the website are 32-51mm (1.26-2.0") but I know in reality, it may be a bit larger. I have a pair of Conti Mountain King 29x2.2 and wondering if they would fit.
    It’ll be super tight. I just measured using a Schwalbe 29x2.0 Marathon Supreme at 45.6 mm width inflated. It has a fairly round profile on narrowish rims (i19 or so) so the height is also around 45 mm. At the chainstay bridge, clearance to the fender mount braze-on is only about 6 mm to the vertex of the tire. On the chainstays, clearance is about 8 mm to the sides of the tire. I didn’t bother measuring the fork because I remember it has considerably more clearance.

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    ^^^ That's awesome info, thanks for going to the effort! Much appreciated.

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    My flat bar purchase has been agreed to in principle but moved back two quarters by the finance committee.

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    You shoulda pulled my trick - just give her the deposit price, as the full price. When she realizes it was just the deposit, it's too late! Then beg for forgiveness, knowing it doesn't matter cause you got a new whip coming.

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    How did it go with the 29x2.2? I'm considering mezcal 29x2.1 I only ride on dry roads. No need for mud clearance

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    I'm not sure yet, cause I don't have my bike yet. The shop is in the process of ordering/building it.

    I did however, decide on a Conti Trail King 27.5 x 2.2 in the front, and a Conti Cross King 27.5 x 2.2 in the rear.

    I think 29 x 2.2 would be pushing it. I would add, it's worth considering the 'actual' tire size differs from most companies 'advertised' size. A lot of the time, the actual size is a bit smaller, so that may help you. Although I can't say from experience (because I don't have the bike yet), I would guess you would be alright with a 29 x 2.1. We are only talking 2.5mm over the max spec on the frame, and in reality the tire is probably a bit under that anyway, probably sitting right at 2.0'' width.

    There are YouTube videos of people using callipers on different tires for the actual widths. If you're lucky, there's a video of the tire you're looking at to shed some light.

  82. #82
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    never mind
    Last edited by Darth Lefty; 03-26-2020 at 10:53 AM. Reason: inessential

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    I just measured the rear clearance with a new, unstretched Schwalbe Thunder Burt tire (29x2.1”, 54-622, Evo, LiteSkin, Addix Speed). These are impressively light tires at 472 g but I have doubts about the long term durability of the thin sidewalls.

    Tire specs mounted with a tube at 40 PSI on a somewhat narrow i19 rim: 49 mm wide, 43.5 mm tall.

    Clearance at both the fender mount and chainstays was about 5 mm. If mounted tubeless and running lower pressures, I’d be worried about sidewall flex causing some rubbing. With these bigger 29er tires, you’d better be sure your rims are true and dished perfectly!

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    i19 rims on the smaller side for 2.1 width? The tires haven't ballooned slightly?

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    Quote Originally Posted by GeneralGee View Post
    i19 rims on the smaller side for 2.1 width? The tires haven't ballooned slightly?
    I’d say they’re a bit narrow given the recent trend toward wider rims. Salsa specs the 700C models with i19 rims and 37-38 mm tires. WTB’s rim and tire chart suggests that a 19 mm rim/ETRTO spec 54 mm tire combo is compatible but not optimal, but the actual width of 49 mm means it squeaks in to their optimal category. Though it’s hard to say whether a slightly wider rim would make this tire better since the side knobs might start to contact the ground.

    By ballooning do you mean the tire profile looking like a light bulb? If so, yes, a little bit but I think this tire was meant to look like that because of the low profile center strip with taller side knobs. If you’re asking whether they’ve stretched, I checked with calipers again after leaving them overnight and they’re perhaps 0.5 mm wider now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 5b00 View Post
    I’d say they’re a bit narrow given the recent trend toward wider rims. Salsa specs the 700C models with i19 rims and 37-38 mm tires. WTB’s rim and tire chart suggests that a 19 mm rim/ETRTO spec 54 mm tire combo is compatible but not optimal, but the actual width of 49 mm means it squeaks in to their optimal category. Though it’s hard to say whether a slightly wider rim would make this tire better since the side knobs might start to contact the ground.

    By ballooning do you mean the tire profile looking like a light bulb? If so, yes, a little bit but I think this tire was meant to look like that because of the low profile center strip with taller side knobs. If you’re asking whether they’ve stretched, I checked with calipers again after leaving them overnight and they’re perhaps 0.5 mm wider now.
    Im confused.

  87. #87
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    Anyone play around with racks for the journeyman. Looking for a low cost quick release type carrier. Want to carry a little bit of stuff on summertime "adventure rides near the beach" seen a few on Amazon that attach to the seatpost.

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    My wife has the same bike (XS) so the seat tube is too small for a water bottle and had to mount a side entry on the down tube.; It looks like your seat bag is off Amazon, how do you like it? Have you tried it with a bottle? Do you think it will hold up?

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    Hi I think I got them online, bought two at same time they were not a lot of money. They are hook and loop over the seat rail and one velcro attachment around the seatpost. I carry two water bottles on my frame and don't like backpacks so these are good for holding a small pump, mini tool, tube, phone, co2 etc. There is also a light.

    I have not carried a water bottle but since it is a velcro hook and loop it might be a stretch (no pun intended) If your carrying a water bottle I would think about getting one of those voile straps to secure it to the saddle https://www.voilestraps.com/voile-st...iety-pack.html

    Quote Originally Posted by tmake View Post
    My wife has the same bike (XS) so the seat tube is too small for a water bottle and had to mount a side entry on the down tube.; It looks like your seat bag is off Amazon, how do you like it? Have you tried it with a bottle? Do you think it will hold up?

  90. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by newking View Post
    What's the biggest tire anyone has run on the 700C Journeyman. Looking for real world examples. I put WTB 700 x 45 Riddlers on mine and still seems to be a huge amount of space for something bigger...
    Quote Originally Posted by GeneralGee View Post
    Wondering if anyone knows the (actual) 700c tire clearance on the Journeyman?

    The specs on the website are 32-51mm (1.26-2.0") but I know in reality, it may be a bit larger. I have a pair of Conti Mountain King 29x2.2 and wondering if they would fit.
    The Journeyman.-img_20200509_094622918.jpg

    29x2.1" Small Block 8 on stock rims. Rear had similar clearance (~4mm).

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    What I'm wondering is why suspension isn't allowed. IMO a FB with a Lauf would be dreamy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by big_papa_nuts View Post
    What I'm wondering is why suspension isn't allowed. IMO a FB with a Lauf would be dreamy.
    Because when all is said and done it falls on the road bike side of the fence, and it's cheap. There's a lot of work they don't have to do to make every conceivable fork work. A Lauf costs as much as the whole bike, for 30mm travel.

    If you want a poofy front ride you could just do the biggest possible 27.5 slick, which is pretty big. And add an insert, even!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Lefty View Post
    Because when all is said and done it falls on the road bike side of the fence, and it's cheap. There's a lot of work they don't have to do to make every conceivable fork work. A Lauf costs as much as the whole bike, for 30mm travel.

    If you want a poofy front ride you could just do the biggest possible 27.5 slick, which is pretty big. And add an insert, even!
    The more I look at it I feel like it could be more of an issue of tire to downtube clearance, especially considering the massive (for a road bike) tire allowances. Honestly I'd rather a flat bar Stormchaser, but I hate the compromises that come with conversion. Maybe with the new Spec Diverge leading the way we will see more flat bar gravel/adventure bikes.

  94. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by big_papa_nuts View Post
    Maybe with the new Spec Diverge leading the way we will see more flat bar gravel/adventure bikes.
    The sheer length of the flat bar Journeyman is what sets it apart. It's TWO INCHES longer than the curly bar version at the same rider size, which must give it about the same riding position as the hoods. Most hybrids that are related to road bikes are about one inch longer, or even just the same frame, and sit you up.

    Alas, there is no higher level version of it. Everything else like it is a mountain bike. If there were a version with Boost and mountain bike parts, I'd be really smitten.

    The Diverge is interesting and at first glance ticks those boxes but doesn't really appeal to me in the same way. Like it's all half measures. It seems like a lot of road bike solutions to offroad problems that already have mountain bike solutions.

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    Thank you for the info!

    Quote Originally Posted by newking View Post
    Hi I think I got them online, bought two at same time they were not a lot of money. They are hook and loop over the seat rail and one velcro attachment around the seatpost. I carry two water bottles on my frame and don't like backpacks so these are good for holding a small pump, mini tool, tube, phone, co2 etc. There is also a light.

    I have not carried a water bottle but since it is a velcro hook and loop it might be a stretch (no pun intended) If your carrying a water bottle I would think about getting one of those voile straps to secure it to the saddle https://www.voilestraps.com/voile-st...iety-pack.html
    Thank you!

  96. #96
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    I came achingly close to buying a Joe a couple days ago. It just suddenly seemed like a bad time to be spending again. I decided to bank it and save for a Warbird.

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