New Bicycle…Giant Great Jouney 2

With my “Tour of Westen Japan” bicycle coming up. I definitly needed a new bicycle, the bicycle that I wanted, the Louis Garneau, was out of stock so it came down to the slightly cheaper Great Journey 2 made by Giant. The size was a bit iffy so I got a significantly longer stem. The old one was about 60mm and the new one is 120mm which is pretty much the longest you can get. Additionally, I got a kickstand like what you might get on a scooter so that it can stand upright by itself even when fully loaded. All tallied, it came to 108 000yen. Which is about 1000$CAN and includes bags as well, which is a pretty good deal.

I rode it home and it feels a lot different than the road bike that I have now. It feels more like a truck as the response time seems to be lower and less crisp, that is probably because it has suspension on the front wheel.

The above picture was taken in my kitchen.

6 thoughts on “New Bicycle…Giant Great Jouney 2”

  1. Liam >

    Yeah, it is pretty good at $1000. A few addons, like the kickstand and a longer stem brought the total up a little more and I am thinking of getting clip pedals as well.

    Parts of it are clearly made to a budget though, especially the bags. I will probably get some dollar-store level straps to hold them onto the racks.

  2. Hi Deidre,

    Thanks for the comment, the Great Journey 2 (2007 Model) is a really good bicycle for the price. The only major issue that i have with it is that the bags that come with it are definitely on the cheap side and I had a strap break early on and one cannot replace the bags with better ones as they are not standard. Additionally on my model they are not waterproof, but I beleive that as of 2008 they are. That being said, I have had no mechanical issues in over 6000km of riding and I have definitly not been nice to. The bike has been of outstanding value and I would recommend it to anybody looking for a bike in the 100 000yen range. However if willing to spend a bit more, I can't help but feel than a slightly better and lighter bike with standard rack and panniers might be a bit better. (My decision was based on stock and schedule rather than price)

    In regards to the route, I hard to give any "must see" places though Mt. Konpira was definitely nice. Keep in mind that the mountains can be cold at night during the Golden Week period.

  3. Hi Brendan, how is your bike holding up?

    I had the 2008 Great Journey 3 model. It was actually the only bike I've bought in my life. I rode 2200km from Fukuoka to Tokyo. Without significant problems. I had to replace the bottom bracket because it was moving slightly sideways as I pedaled. and the rear freewheel slips a little.

    It was an extremely great value in terms of price. I got everything with accessories for 85000-90000 yen (kickstand,bottle,computer,mirror,a few tools,lights).

    The problem was that I left it in Tokyo thinking I would come back for another ride after half an year while I went off to Singapore to find a job because I ran out of money, but it looks like I'll be in Singapore longer. The couple I've left it with seem to be using it and I don't want to take it away from them at the moment, so I'm considering buying a new one. Since I don't have much experience with bikes, I feel more comfortable buying a stock instead of a custom bike. I'm looking at the Great Journey 2010 model, which has no suspension and has narrower wheels. The only problem I have with it is that some models dont come with panniers and only one has rear panniers. Also, Singapore doesnt stock the 2010 model, only the 2008. I was thinking of maybe going over to Taiwan to buy the 2010 if I end up deciding to go with it.

    I was just wondering if you had any thoughts about whether I should stick to the giant or try for another type?

    I've only ridden with flat bars, never with a drop bar so I'm a little worried about switching to another type.

    The 2008 was 15.5kg. 2010 is supposedly 14kg. Are you still in japan? Do you have a shop nearby you could look at a 2010 model? I wonder if the 1.5kg makes a significant different.

    Thanks!

  4. Thomas,

    I agree with your assessment of the Great Journey. I have yet to have a single problem with the bike despite taking it in for a full inspection before my trip to Vietnam last year. The only real complaint that I have towards it is the low quality of the bags on the model that I bought and I would have happy shelled out some money for some better bags but they are custom to the bike.

    As for weight, I know exactly how much it weighs as i had to put it on an airplane last year. The bike with its bags and a few tools to put it together (multi-tool and a 10mm spanner for the front fender) and the box itself came to about 20kg. I do not really think that a kg here or there really matters when one is dealing with a loaded tourer. I means the different between 30kg vs. 28.5kg.

    I like the drop handle bars because I am used to them from the roadbike and additionally they give you multiple places to put your hands while riding which can make it easier on your hands and wrists.

    Hope that helps

    Brendan

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