Rawland unpacks the Ravn & Ulv bikes for adventure-loaded gravel exploration

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The new Rawland Ravn is a triple-butted steel drop bar bike that’ll fit anything from 26″ mountain bike tires up to 700×44, giving you every practical option under the sun for heading off the beaten path. And with rack, fender and accessory mounts, you can take everything you need to stay out there a while.

Its geometry is designed to let you ride fast over mixed surfaces, even when carrying a load, or just whip through traffic using it as a super commuter. Larger 650b x 58mm (2.25″) tires (or 42mm/1.65″ with fenders) give it floatation over rocks or potholes. Thru axles front and rear keep it stiff where it needs to be, but the steel frame helps make it lively. They’re calling it an “all-road enduro” bike that’s perfect for singletrack, rando, touring, gravel, bike packing and adventure. ‘Nuff said.

Unless you wanna go bigger…

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The Ravn is available as a frameset ($950) or complete bike ($2,999), pre-orders are open now. Final spec and build TBD.

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The Ulv, pronounced “ulf” and is Viking for “wolf”, also gets a triple butted steel frame but expands the axle width to plus sizing, putting a 12×148 out back to handle 27.5 x 3.0 or standard 29er tires.

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Features are similar, giving you a more capable option for rougher terrain. Same prices as the Ravn, both delivering by end of year 2016.

RawlandCycles.com

Comments

20 thoughts on “Rawland unpacks the Ravn & Ulv bikes for adventure-loaded gravel exploration

  1. Don’t forget that low trail geometry! It makes a HUGE difference and isn’t for everybody. That being said, these look awesome for those in the lowtrailcamp. I checked out of that camp myself.

    I had a Rawland Nordavinden and the build quality and attention to detail was impressive; probably a notch above my Soma and maybe two notches above the Surly (both fine bikes, one of which has been used every workday for years now).

    I am kind of waiting for his web-shop to open so I can have a closer look at those drop bars though…

    1. As drawn as I am to custom steel pipes, coming down on one side or the other of French vs. Italian rando geo seems extreme. & regardless of French-Taiwanese-Viking-Ulv-riding fantasies, I have to wonder how much singletrack shredding–as Rawland’s site promises–is really going to happen on a bike with 3cm of trail and a 46cm chainstay! Salsa Marrakesh please.

      1. That’s the plus model. A 3″ tyre. Rawland does a good job on geometry. Clearly much time thought sweat goes into these bikes. I sold my Salsa Kesh cos the handling was intolerable, especially with a front load. Rawlands are clearly influenced by the fascinating research in Bicycle Quarterly. Real world riding with camping gear!

  2. Fantastic. That Ravn is my next bike. Low trail changed cycling for me. I prefer it even when not carrying anything up front. Really nimble.

  3. I don’t understand do-it-all, jack-of-all-trades, adventure-bike hybrids with 1x drivetrains. 1x drivetrains are when I know what kind of gearing I will need for the kind of riding I’m doing. Give me 2x or even 3x for more options if It’s going to be used for anything and everything.

  4. @ anonymous – Agreed, how can you have a do it all bike w/ out a Ft. Der. and mountains w/ packs and big tires? My last bikepacking ride was over 15K total elevation w/ lots of loose dirt. Not sure how a x1 would fit the bill for a jack of all trades bike. Cool for around town or riding in hills but not actual mountains. Maybe this is a bike for young kids or singles w/ lots of time to train.

    1. Running a triple with a low gear of 36t and a front ring that is a 24t is not as low of a gear as a 42t cog and a 30t chain ring. You will spin out on the downhills though if that is what you meant.

      1. It’s not exactly hard to spin out a 30t chainring. That’s the granny ring of a road triple, and even with a 10t cassette, it’s lower than a 34×11 on a road bike with a compact crank. Is a 3:1 ratio high enough for most riding. Sure, but when a bike is marketed as being versatile, one expects it should be versatile.

    2. I truly believe 1x was designed to confuse the hell out of people that have zero experience with it. “Cool for around town or riding in hills but not actual mountains.” Hilarious!

  5. You can run a front derailleur and a double or triple on the Ravn.

    For the Ulv, we like a 28x42t for loaded climbing, but you can go lower.

    Both bikes are available as framesets.

    We will be putting some stuff up in the webshop after Interbike.

  6. 1x makes a ton of sense to me on mountain bikes when you really don’t need a huge range, and they may help with suspension performance. Everywhere else, WTF.

  7. Been touring, commuting, and gravel grinding on a steel drop-bar 27.5er like this — a Co-Motion Siskiyou. Except it’s set up with a 24-36-48 and 11-34 drivetrain, for a 6.2:1 range. I use all these gears, all the time. Granny gear for steep MTB trails when grinding, and when touring: there are grades up to 17% even on the ACA East Coast route, we discovered — tough with a full load. West Coast is easier. Need the top end because fast is fun, and there are long distances to cover. Spinning out at 36 mph is acceptable. So 1x would be a serious downgrade.

    Otherwise, this bike looks like good value. Wide tires — l like textured-but-knobless 2″ Schwalbe Big Bens, they handle rough trail (except deep sand) and are fast on the road, with good cush and super grip on pavement.

    1. How does half the group that shows up for Tour Divide every year on 1x drivetrains cope with 200,000 ft elevation gain over 2,700 miles with such a “serious downgrade”?

      1. Exactly and this year Chris Plesko even finished 2nd on a single speed (32×16).
        I might need 3x when someone else need 1x or single speed, it doesn’t mean one of us are wrong.

    2. Agreed, FD is critical on proper touring. But SRAM wants you to ditch it and buy $400 cassettes. 12-speed Eagle touring edition coming soon??

  8. 1x, 2x, 3x, set it up however you want! Disparaging others for the gear or set up or drivetrain they ride has to be the dumbest thing going in all of bicycle related comments. ‘your seat angle isn’t level’, ‘not enough eyelets for fenders and racks, and my hello kitty pizza slice holder’, ‘Oh, you ride 1x?, Dummy…. childish.

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