After a long involvement in cyclocross, including sponsoring the Raleigh-Clement team that called Caroline Mani, Jamey Driscoll, Nicole Duke, Ben Berden and others as team members, Raleigh has quietly stepped away from the sport in both sponsorship and producing a cyclocross bike.
Cyclocross's loss has been gravel's gain, with Raleigh now revamping the alloy Amelia and Willard and steel Tamland gravel bikes.
We first saw the Tamland back in 2013, and it has continued to remain a mainstay in Raleigh's lineup of gravel bikes. Billed as a multipurpose bike, Raleigh designed the Tamland for day-long and multi-day treks on your favorite gravel roads.
We recently received the Shimano-105-equipped Tamland 1 for review. We take a first look at the steel gravel bike in this In Review spotlight.
The Raleigh Tamland gets its name from Brick Tamland, the not-so-bright newsman played by Steve Carell in Anchorman.
Although Brick Tamland may not be the sharpest tool in the shed, the Raleigh Tamland has proven to be useful on gravel roads.
The Tamland 1 frame is built with Reynolds 631 Chromoly custom butted steel. The head tube is tapered, and the frame has been modernized with 12mm thru-axles and flat mount disc tabs.
The original Tamland featured a steel fork, and that has been updated as well. The fork on the Tamland 1 is monocoque carbon with a tapered alloy steerer, and it has one set of bolts to mount a rack.
Raleigh designed both the frame and fork for running plush, wide gravel tires. The company claims clearance for up to 700c x 45mm, and the 40mm stock tires fit quite nicely.
Back in 2013 when we first saw the Tamland, there was still some mystery surrounding a "gravel specific" design. Now, after several years of Sea Otter bikes being almost exclusively gravel bikes, there are different genera of gravel bikes.
The Tamland 1 could probably best be classified as a "traditional" gravel bike with a slack front and relatively low bottom bracket. The head tube angle on our 58cm frame (57.5cm top tube) is 71.5 degrees, and the 44.0cm long chainstays and 52mm fork offset create a wheelbase of 104.9cm.
The reach on the 58cm frame is 38.5cm, which is maybe a smidge short, and the stack is 60.2 cm, which puts the handlebar up in a relatively high position.
The bottom bracket is a Praxis Works M30 with external bearings.
With its adventure inclination, the Tamland 1 has mounts in a tasteful amount. There are bosses for two bottles, rear rack and fender mounts and one set of bosses on the fork.
Raleigh currently offers the Tamland in two builds. The Tamland 2 has a SRAM Rival 1 drivetrain and hydraulic disc brakes, and the Tamland 1 I reviewed has a Shimano 105 build with mechanical disc brakes.
We typically review companies' higher-end bikes, but my choice to review the Tamland 1 was one of personal preference. In my opinion, gravel racing is similar to road racing, and a large ring to hammer when necessary and a small ring to climb the steep Midwest hills (they exist) are nice to have.
The Tamland 1 comes with Shimano 105 R7000 front and rear derailleurs. The crankset is an alloy Praxis Works Alba M30 with 48/32t chain rings. The rear derailleur is an 11-32t, giving a sweet 1:1 gear ratio for those steep climbs.
The Tamland 1 comes with TRP Spyre-C mechanical disc calipers with 160mm rotors. Shift/brake levers are Shimano 105 R7000.
Raleigh ships the Tamland 1 with wheels built with HED Tomcat alloy tubeless clincher rims. The Tomcat rims are 21mm wide internally and are the slightly heavier, pinned OEM version of the HED Ardennes alloy clinchers we reviewed a while ago. Hubs on the wheels are unbranded 28-spoke, 6-bolt.
Tires on the bike are 700c x 40mm Donnelly X'Plor MSO tubeless clinchers. The fast-rolling tires ship with valves, making tubeless setup a bit quicker.
The rest of the build is rounded out by a Raleigh alloy 110mm stem, 44cm handlebar with 12-degree flare and 27.2mm seatpost. The saddle is a WTB Volt.
The Tamland 1 is a relatively affordable steel bike, and so not surprisingly, it is kind of heavy. Our test bike weighed in at 23.2 pounds without pedals and 15.2 pounds without wheels.
The Tamland 1 package has an MSRP of $2,000. A premium of $400 gets you the upgrade to the Rival 1 Tamland 2 model with hydraulic disc brakes and a Rival 1 build. Raleigh now sells direct-to-consumer, and sales are currently offered on last year's models.
So far, I have put a few spins around the gravel block in on the Tamland 1.
Our reviewer was impressed with the Ardennes tubeless rims, and their OEM cousin the Tomcat were straightforward to set up tubeless with the provided valves. After a winter of commuting on 33 mm cyclocross tires, the extra cush of the MSOs was a nice change.
The Tamland 1 rides like a slung-out gravel bike, with the high head tube providing a comfortable upright ride. I have opted for a 1 cm spacer, but even with the stem slammed, the front would still feel upright and comfortable.
The frame has proven more responsive than I would have expected for a heavy steel bike. One noticeable drawback of choosing the 2x Tamland 1 is the weaker stopping power than mechanical brakes would provide.
Stay tuned for a full review of the Tamland 1 after it heads out onto gravel roads and dirt trails.
For more on the Raleigh Tamland 1, see the specs and photo gallery below.
Raleigh Tamland 1 Gravel Bike Specs
Weight: 23.2 pounds (actual, w/o pedals); 15.8 pounds (actual, w/o wheels, pedals)
Frame: Raleigh Tamland, 58cm, Reynolds 631 Chromoly Custom Butted steel, 12mm thru-axle, flat mount disc
Fork: Raleigh monocoque carbon, tapered steerer, 12mm thru-axle, flat mount disc
Bottom Bracket: Praxis Works M30
Shift/Brake Levers: Shimano 105 R7000
Brakes: TRP Spyre-C, mechanical disc, 160mm rotors
Crankset: Praxis Works Alba, 48/32t chain rings
Front Derailleur: Shimano 105 R7000
Rear Derailleur: Shimano 105 R7000
Cassette: Shimano 105 CS-R7000, 11-32t
Wheels: HED Tomcat alloy tubeless rims; 28-hole, 6-bolt hubs
Tires: Donnelly X'Plor MSO, 700c x 40mm
Handlebar: Raleigh 200 Series, 12-degree flare, alloy, 44cm
Stem: Raleigh 3D forged alloy, 100mm
Seatpost: Raleigh 200 Series, alloy, 2-bolt
Saddle: WTB Volt Comp
More Info: raleighusa.com