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Salsa Journeyman

Old 03-17-18, 05:04 AM
  #1  
wheelsmcgee
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Salsa Journeyman

https://salsacycles.com/bikes/journe...eyman_sora_700
  • six options, 2x9 Sora drop bar ($1099), 2x8 Claris drop bar and 2x8 Claris flat bar ($899), each with either 700c or 650b
  • 46/30 crankset
  • alu frame, carbon fork on the sora, alu fork on Claris
  • tire clearance is 700x50, slightly wider in 650b
  • bottle mounts galore

Not a bad bike in my opinion...I think to hit this price point (for Salsa anyway) they did pretty well.
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Old 03-17-18, 06:17 AM
  #2  
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Originally Posted by wheelsmcgee View Post
https://salsacycles.com/bikes/journe...eyman_sora_700
  • six options, 2x9 Sora drop bar ($1099), 2x8 Claris drop bar and 2x8 Claris flat bar ($899), each with either 700c or 650b
  • 46/30 crankset
  • alu frame, carbon fork on the sora, alu fork on Claris
  • tire clearance is 700x50, slightly wider in 650b
  • bottle mounts galore

Not a bad bike in my opinion...I think to hit this price point (for Salsa anyway) they did pretty well.
I agree. I like the 650b drop bar sora option in particular. Great option for those who have a strict budget and want a "do it all" bike.
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Old 03-17-18, 06:24 AM
  #3  
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Man, if it had thru axles it would be about perfect. Are they really more expensive to produce?
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Old 03-17-18, 09:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Lazyass View Post
Man, if it had thru axles it would be about perfect. Are they really more expensive to produce?
I wondered that too. My first thought was itd be nice if they had one higher tier with thru axles and a better drivetrain (tiagra or apex 1x). I wonder if Salsa thought it would start to pull buyers away from the pricier vaya and alu warbird
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Old 03-17-18, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by wheelsmcgee View Post
I wondered that too. My first thought was itd be nice if they had one higher tier with thru axles and a better drivetrain (tiagra or apex 1x). I wonder if Salsa thought it would start to pull buyers away from the pricier vaya and alu warbird
Yeah. Maybe since disc wheels set up for q/r's are slowly becoming obsolete, perhaps Salsa can get them from their supplier for dirt cheap. Even without t/a's I'm going to have to consider the Sora 650. That's like the perfect bikepacking bike.
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Old 03-18-18, 09:06 AM
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+1 on the thru axles. I was really, really looking forward to this bike's release. Not so much now. It's not any one thing (like the lack of thru axles). I wonder why they're so heavy for an alloy framed bike. I wonder why they went to a 70.5 angle instead of the Vaya's 71.5. This now puts the trail up into the 70s. Slacker head tube angle and shorter chainstays - 440 vs the Vaya's 450. I just don't get what they're doing with this bike. Don't get me wrong. For a real tight budget bike, I think it's a great option. Unfortunately for me, they went SO budget that it's not worth upgrading to where I would want it. Too bad for me, because the stack/reach on this bike is just what I want. This is also true of the Vaya and the AC space horse. Oh, well.
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Old 03-18-18, 09:48 AM
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So they go to the trouble of supporting flat-mount brakes...but not thru-axle. WTF.


Winner otherwise...although a 9-speed 11-34 cassette is going to have bigly gaps... Strange seeing square taper cranks still being sold (on a non-department store bike)

Last edited by Marcus_Ti; 03-18-18 at 10:00 AM.
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Old 03-18-18, 11:32 AM
  #8  
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Originally Posted by Marcus_Ti View Post
So they go to the trouble of supporting flat-mount brakes...but not thru-axle. WTF.


Winner otherwise...although a 9-speed 11-34 cassette is going to have bigly gaps... Strange seeing square taper cranks still being sold (on a non-department store bike)
Yeah, some head scratchers for sure. Another thing is that up until a year ago, 9 speed cassettes were plentiful and cheap. They are disappearing very, very quickly from the mainstream marketplaces as are all 9 speed components. The old reliable M591 crankset is no longer available at chain reaction and hard to find other places. I think Salsa is just a little too late with this bike as it is. JMO.
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Old 03-18-18, 02:28 PM
  #9  
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Originally Posted by Marcus_Ti View Post
Strange seeing square taper cranks still being sold (on a non-department store bike)
The 1400$ Vaya comes with square taper too. Simply cost cutting I guess. I love their frames and one day i'm going to build up a Vaya frame but their stuff can be a bit overpriced compared to the bigger manufacturers IMO but it's understandable.
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Old 03-18-18, 05:13 PM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by wheelsmcgee View Post
I wondered that too. My first thought was itd be nice if they had one higher tier with thru axles and a better drivetrain (tiagra or apex 1x). I wonder if Salsa thought it would start to pull buyers away from the pricier vaya and alu warbird
Vaya doesn't have thru axle either. One of the reason I am not interested in it. The War bird is a different animal than the Vaya/Journeyman.

I suppose people buying entry level bikes won't know the difference.

I tweak the 9mm QR fork on my Trek Crossrip bad on 28's. it's even worse with 700x38's.

Maybe Salsa has a carbon frame thru axle version of the Journeyman in the works? a Road version of the Cutthroat.
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Old 03-18-18, 06:32 PM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by Metieval View Post
Vaya doesn't have thru axle either. One of the reason I am not interested in it. The War bird is a different animal than the Vaya/Journeyman.
Well, not to split hairs, but the carbon forked vaya has a thru axle fork/qr rear. As far as the warbird being a different animal, it is certainly marketed as more of a racer vs a adventure/touring machine compared to the vaya, but...that comment got me curious about the geometry of all three...the journeyman turns out to have a stack/reach a little bit in the middle. For example, here are some stack/reach numbers for all three in the ~57/58 frame sizes:

Vaya:628/372
Journeyman:624/379
Warbird Al: 616/386

If the journeyman came with better gearing, it would be an alternative to either the vaya/warbird, IMO. Identical no, but probably at most a stem change away from the fit of either, which is what a new buyer mostly notices. So, my thnking is that salsa made this bike largely to get the low end of the market. If someone walks into a salsa dealer not ready to shell out closer to $2k for Vaya GX or the Al Warbird, the Journeyman becomes something that the customer can be pointed toward so they wont walk out and buy elsewhere.

And I agree that most buyers (especially at the low end) dont care about QR vs thru axle. I have only QR and am happy with it, though I can see the arguments for thru axle.
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Old 03-18-18, 06:44 PM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by wheelsmcgee View Post
Well, not to split hairs, <snipe>
Uhh ones a racer, and the others are utility bicycles, lugs etc.....
but Yeah you are right, they all three are bicycles. not much difference.

Originally Posted by wheelsmcgee View Post
And I agree that most buyers (especially at the low end) dont care about QR vs thru axle. I have only QR and am happy with it, though I can see the arguments for thru axle.
Millions (Billions?) are happy with horse meat McDonald's hamburgers too. LOL
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Old 03-18-18, 07:27 PM
  #13  
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The Journeyman is basically an aluminum version of a 90's hybrid with more versatility (700c vs 650B, big tire clearance) and better geometry (drop vs flat bar versions). I've always thought the 90's hybrids, or something like them, are the ideal bikes for what the average person does with a bike and the Journeyman is a great deal for beginners. As someone who bought his first adult bicycle in 1995, the Journeyman as a frameset is pretty attractive. I haven't read if a frameset is in the works, though.
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Old 03-18-18, 09:57 PM
  #14  
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Originally Posted by JWK View Post
Yeah, some head scratchers for sure. Another thing is that up until a year ago, 9 speed cassettes were plentiful and cheap. They are disappearing very, very quickly from the mainstream marketplaces as are all 9 speed components. The old reliable M591 crankset is no longer available at chain reaction and hard to find other places. I think Salsa is just a little too late with this bike as it is. JMO.
9sp is disappearing very very quickly?
Er...bike shop quality bikrs are still being made with 8sp, so 9so isnt going anywhere. Hrck, Shimano just released a new version of its 9sp drivetrain not long ago.
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Old 03-19-18, 05:58 AM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
9sp is disappearing very very quickly?
Er...bike shop quality bikrs are still being made with 8sp, so 9so isnt going anywhere. Hrck, Shimano just released a new version of its 9sp drivetrain not long ago.
Hey, I hope 9 speed isn't going anywhere, but I can't find what I want anymore. Sure, there are plenty of new bikes with 9 and 8 speed groupsets, but finding components to change things out isn't nearly so easy as it was even a year ago. No road triples and nothing but a narrow selection of mtb cassettes.

I will look for info on the newer 9 sp drivetrain.
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Old 03-19-18, 09:02 AM
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I initially thought that this looked like a good budget option. However, taking a closer look at the specs, even the top of the line Sora bke is pretty chintzy for $1,100. No name brakes. Recreational hybrid-level Formula hubs. Bottom of the line crank. Rear QR. I don't really blame Salsa, it's more an indication of where we're at on bike pricing these days. At full LBS ricing, $1,100 doesn't get you much. For its intended purpose, this build likely wouldn't last very long. If you intend to ride gravel frequently, you need to spend more IMO.
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Old 03-19-18, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Marcus_Ti View Post
Strange seeing square taper cranks still being sold (on a non-department store bike)
What's wrong with a square taper BB? I have mostly heard only good things about them (and been using one without trouble for years), unlike some of the new BB standards.
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Old 03-19-18, 09:34 AM
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Originally Posted by gravel.n.mud View Post
What's wrong with a square taper BB? I have mostly heard only good things about them (and been using one without trouble for years), unlike some of the new BB standards.
Nothing really "wrong"... Just odd seeing standards retired a decade ago being sold in reputable new bikes. Dept stores never stopped using taper, ofc.

I was using a JIS taper 46/30 for the last year. Only complaints were that it was heavy and not that stiff compared to spindle cranks... The difference from my IRD Defiant and UN55 to my FSA SLK is about a full pound.
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Old 03-19-18, 02:21 PM
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Over on the Radavist there was discussion about why it has QR instead of through axle -- at this price point, the idea was that people's older wheelsets will still work with this bike.

I think this bike is a pretty ****** option at this price point. 650b disc brakes, complete bike for $1100, with all the mounts you could hope for.

The current generation of Sora is really very good. I say this as someone who HATED my 7-speed Sora group that was on my very first road bike.
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Old 03-19-18, 06:03 PM
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Originally Posted by ksryder View Post
Over on the Radavist there was discussion about why it has QR instead of through axle -- at this price point, the idea was that people's older wheelsets will still work with this bike.

I think this bike is a pretty ****** option at this price point. 650b disc brakes, complete bike for $1100, with all the mounts you could hope for.

The current generation of Sora is really very good. I say this as someone who HATED my 7-speed Sora group that was on my very first road bike.
I have the 9 speed sora, and my only gripe is the throw to get it into the big ring. then again Apex isn't any better there.

I rode the claris 700c version today. Impressive!
Can't wait to ride the 650 version.

And If I knew Salsa would drop us a Carbon frame with this Geo with thru axle fork. I'd be all over it, Especially if it was a frame/fork buy option. If I knew, I might be tempted to buy the aluminum. If I had to wait a year for a carbon version.
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Old 03-19-18, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by gravel.n.mud View Post
What's wrong with a square taper BB? I have mostly heard only good things about them (and been using one without trouble for years), unlike some of the new BB standards.
weight and flex
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Old 03-19-18, 09:07 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by Metieval View Post
weight and flex
How much weight and flex? A few grams more on these relatively heavy bikes, measurable spindle flex amounts to.....?? Any empirical data published? I doubt almost anyone can notice any appreciable difference between a square taper spindle and one of the current flavor ones. So.....thats what I think, ymmv. (Disclaimer: I don't ride a square taper)

regards, Brian
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Old 03-19-18, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by calstar View Post
How much weight and flex? A few grams more on these relatively heavy bikes, measurable spindle flex amounts to.....?? Any empirical data published? I doubt almost anyone can notice any appreciable difference between a square taper spindle and one of the current flavor ones. So.....thats what I think, ymmv. (Disclaimer: I don't ride a square taper)

regards, Brian
I didn't weight my FSA and square taper. but there was some serious weight difference between my removed square taper and my Ultegra 68 mm threaded. there was also a huge difference between the FSA and the Tiagra crankset. again not weighed.
The biggest difference was the chainring quit flexing into the derailleur after the swap.

a few grams here, a few grams there, makes for lighter bikes.

just like a cookie here, a donut there, 2 beers here a shot over there... makes for fat obese twits that scoff at a few grams. It's a mentality thing.
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Old 03-19-18, 10:46 PM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by wheelsmcgee View Post
https://salsacycles.com/bikes/journe...eyman_sora_700
  • six options, 2x9 Sora drop bar ($1099), 2x8 Claris drop bar and 2x8 Claris flat bar ($899), each with either 700c or 650b
  • 46/30 crankset
  • alu frame, carbon fork on the sora, alu fork on Claris
  • tire clearance is 700x50, slightly wider in 650b
  • bottle mounts galore
Not a bad bike in my opinion...I think to hit this price point (for Salsa anyway) they did pretty well.

The colour scheme on the 700c Journeyman is awesome.


And they appear to have fixed my biggest bug bear with Salsa frames and that is to have the seat stays and top tube come together at the seat tube at the same height.


So many other Salsa frame have this off by 3 to 5 mm and it is jarring.


That is why I have ruled out buying a Vaya or any other Salsa steel frame.
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Old 03-19-18, 10:49 PM
  #25  
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Originally Posted by JWK View Post
Yeah, some head scratchers for sure. Another thing is that up until a year ago, 9 speed cassettes were plentiful and cheap. They are disappearing very, very quickly from the mainstream marketplaces as are all 9 speed components. The old reliable M591 crankset is no longer available at chain reaction and hard to find other places. I think Salsa is just a little too late with this bike as it is. JMO.

I agree with you that choice of quality 9 speed parts is rapidly diminishing.


You can still get the excellent M591 crank at multiple German online retailers and Chainreaction is living off past glories, they are a near useless store these days.
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