Geometry, design, versatile
The Raleigh Tamland is a great adventure bike that offers
We are experiencing a major shift in the biking world, with more people embracing the versatility of gravel bikes. This can be credited to the increasing risk posed by distracted drivers on roads that can end your life before you know it.
Furthermore, gravel road bikes provide us with the opportunity to experience new places and explore routes that a road bike couldn’t possibly handle. However, finding a high-performance bike that is dedicated to the gravel terrain might take you longer than you’d expect.
The Raleigh Tamland is a good example of a model that demonstrates what a gravel bike can offer. Let us consider the following review, where I go deeper into the features that this adventure bike offers.
FRAME: Reynolds 631 Chromoly steel with a monocoque carbon fork
BRAKE TYPES: TRP Spyre-C mechanical disc brakes with 160mm rotors
SHIFTER: Shimano 105 R7000
RIMS: ED Tomcat tubeless rims 28holes and 6-bolt hubs
TIRES: Donnelly X’Plor MSO, 700c x 40mm
The Raleigh Tamland is available in two different build kits; the Raleigh Tamland 1 and the Raleigh Tamland 2. Both bikes come in sizes 52 to 60 cm. The frame is built using a
Reynolds 631 custom butted Chromoly steel, which tries to provide a balance between durability and weight.
The fork is made of monocoque carbon featuring a tapered alloy steerer. Raleigh
has moved from a 15mm thru axle in its earlier design to a 12mm thru axle and flat-mount disc tabs.
If you are an avid bike enthusiast, you will appreciate the quality that Chromoly steel offers as far as gravel riding is concerned. Despite the additional weight you have to contend with, steel absorbs road vibrations quite well, which ensures you have a steady ride on gravel roads.
The carbon fork also does a good job of sucking up the chatter that comes from a lack of road, which further reinforces the aspect of comfort on this bike. The carbon fibers interwoven on the fork in a lattice formation tend to limit the vibrations, giving your hands better control on the handlebar.
I also like the large front frame triangle, which provides you with enough room to mount water bottle cages. With the steel frame, the downside is that the Tamland is a heavy bike! But then again you get an eerily smooth ride on the flipside.
The Tamland 2 uses a SRAM Rival 1brake levers and drivetrain with hydraulic disc brakes whereas the Tamland 1 features a Shimano 105 with mechanical disc brakes. These will bring your ride to a stop as conveniently required when you are cycling in shifty and unstable fire roads.
The thing with choosing the Tamland 1 over the 2 is that the hydraulic discs offer less superior stopping power compared to the mechanical disc brakes.
I really feel like the Shimano 105 shifting system on the Tamland is among the best you can find in the industry. I was impressed with how smoothly it shifts and the whole trouble-free experience. The 11-speed drivetrain provides you with 22 gears that make tackling steep hills a piece of cake.
The Tamlan comes with durable HED Tomcat wheels that will prove to be useful in harsh gravel terrain. These are tubeless compatible, providing you with maximum traction on rugged roads when paired with the Donelly X’Plor 700 by 40c tires.
I must say that although 40mm-wide Donelly tires may appear skinny when you are riding the Tamlan for the first time; they can really grip the road. This ensures that you have complete control of the ride even on wet surfaces. I was surprised by just how confidently I kept on trudging forward when it seemed highly unlikely.
What We Like
I like the overall geometry of the Tamland. It somehow enhances the stability of the ride when moving at high speed on loose and deep gravel roads.
This is thanks to a lowered bottom bracket, slightly longer chain stays, and a slacker head tube angle; all of which work together to bring more comfort and control to the ride without compromising your speed.
If anything, it actually increases your pace on gravel roads given the superior handling it offers.
The Tamland has an uncanny feeling of smoothness when you mount it. Every aspect of its ergonomics, from the handlebar to the saddle and general posture make it suitable for not only male but also female cyclists. The frame of the bike and the fork work together to damp vibrations and offer you a smooth ride.
The general design of the bike, with the dropped bars and the cute colors, give it a charming appearance that women in the biking community will enjoy. Not to mention the comfortable upright posture.
If you are planning to go on a cross-country expedition on a bike, you will appreciate the convenience that the Tamland brings to the table. While I feel it is hands down the best handling bike on gravel roads, this bicycle proves to be just as effective on other terrains, including tarmac roads, dirt trail, and wet surfaces.
What We Don't Like
The steel frame of the bike makes it somewhat heavy. This is something Raleigh could improve on to make the Tamland more lightweight. I feel like suggest one of the areas to start shedding a pound or two from the bike would be the wheels.
The Tamland sets the bar high for gravel bikes as far as comfort and handling is concerned. This bike is quite smooth in deep gravel and remains dead stable even at top speeds. It can comfortably handle up to 43-mm tires and combined with the excellent Spyre brakes and 11-speed shifting, this bike offers a quality performance generally.
It will do for you what you expect from a long distance gravel rider as well as provide you with the ability to comfortably carry a trunk bag or frame bag on a rack and fender mount. If you have around $1800 to spare, the Tamland looks like a great buy to me.
The Raleigh Tamland is a charming gravel bike that offers great handling on gravel roads. However, it has the all-around versatility to take on other terrains with the same impressive results.
If you can overlook the weight issue and focus more on the general comfort that it offers, this is a good choice for an adventure bike.