You might not know the Noble name, but you’re probably already familiar with Mark Landsaat’s work. As the former Director of Product Development at Raleigh America, Mark had his hands in a number of popular bikes – including the Raleigh Tamland. That’s an important detail when you consider the newest model from Noble, the GX1 gravel bike.

Back in his Raleigh days, Mark says that they had used Reynolds steel tubing for years, and actually wanted to use 853 for the Tamland. However, Reynolds advised against it, suggesting that they use the stronger 631 steel alloy instead which is often used in motorcycle frames. But, the tubing sizes were too big which led to Reynolds adding more tubing profiles specifically to adapt to the needs of Raleigh.

Noble GX1 tames the gravel with custom butted Reynolds 631 steel frame

Noble GX1 tames the gravel with custom butted Reynolds 631 steel frame

Now that Mark is doing his own thing with Noble bikes, he still has those connections at Reynolds which is why he has once again designed a gravel bike using a custom Reynolds 631 steel tubeset. These aren’t just the old tubes from Raleigh though – Mark says that they feature new profiles and result in an even better ride quality with improved durability.

Noble GX1 tames the gravel with custom butted Reynolds 631 steel frame Noble GX1 tames the gravel with custom butted Reynolds 631 steel frame

Built with both gravel riding and bike packing in mind, the GX1 offers full fender and rack mounts with the ability to run full coverage fenders on 700c x 40mm tires. Noble lists the tire clearance of the bike as 700c x 40mm, but Mark points out that is the ISO 4210 rating which requires 6mm of clearance on both sides of the tire. So depending on the tire and rim combination, you could probably go larger.

Noble GX1 tames the gravel with custom butted Reynolds 631 steel frame Noble GX1 tames the gravel with custom butted Reynolds 631 steel frame

Built with a press fit bottom bracket, Noble equips their bikes with a Wheels Manufacturing thread together PF bottom bracket which eliminates creaking issues, and the frame runs flat mount 160mm disc brakes, and a 12 x 142mm rear end.

Noble GX1 tames the gravel with custom butted Reynolds 631 steel frame

Designed around a “forward geometry”, the GX1 follows current gravel trends of using a longer top tube with a shorter stem for improved handling both on and off road. Complete builds include a Toray carbon fork with 12 x 100mm thru axle, fender mounts, and flat mount disc brakes.

Noble GX1 tames the gravel with custom butted Reynolds 631 steel frame

Pricing is set at $2,499 for a complete Ultegra 2×11 build with tubeless rims and tires, and it’s expected to be available in a few months.

noble-bikes.com

10 COMMENTS

  1. Looks like the built bike is running Ultegra 46/36T chainrings too.

    Really tasty, and the price is very sweet for what you’re getting. Will they offer this in a frameset option as well?

    • Hi Typevertigo, you are correct, we specced the 46/36T chainring combo. At the moment I don’t have plans to offer this as a frameset. Since I’m a tiny startup, there’s limits to what I can offer. Complete bikes are coming first, hopefully we will be able to offer framesets at a later date.

      Cheers

  2. “Mark says that they had used Reynolds steel tubing for years, and actually wanted to use 853 for the Tamland. However, Reynolds advised against it, suggesting that they use the stronger 631 steel alloy instead which is often used in motorcycle frames. But, the tubing sizes were too big which led to Reynolds adding more tubing profiles specifically to adapt to the needs of Raleigh.”

    ?

    631 isn’t stronger than 853 and Reynolds would know that : ) ‘Strong enough’ 631, sure. And the Reynolds tube list has had 631 in sizes down to whippy-slim 25.4 and 28.6 OD for years.

    • Hi Joe,

      We started development of the Raleigh gravel bikes in 2012, it was that year I had a meeting with Reynolds at the Taipei Cycle Show. It wasn’t strength that led Reynolds to recommend 631. According to our conversation at the time 631 is a tougher alloy than 853 and better suited for off-road abuse and repeated impacts from rocks and the likes.

      And yes, there is a large list of butting profiles for 631, but new butting profiles were added to meet the needs of our frame as well as the need to meet strength requirements for testing. At the time we tested to EN-14781. This has now been superseded by the ISO-4210 standard. The testing requirements continue to increase in strength requirements and this has led to the use of butting profiles with larger wall thicknesses at the ends so ISO-4210 requirements can be met.

      • Thanks for clarifying Mark, article wording was a bit inaccurate maybe.

        853 and 631 are the same alloy or composition though according to the Reynolds site, not different alloys – 853 is a heat-treated version of 631. If 853 is heat-treated for a higher UTS it would be more dent-resistant for a given wall thickness (actually 725 has a higher UTS than 631 also. Expect it’s different post-weld as that’s what they list as the 631/853 advantage, but dents happen in the mid-tube areas).

        • No problem Joe, quite honestly I don’t know the exact metallurgic reasons as to why 631 vs. 853. Obviously both materials make for a great frame. Someone from Reynolds would have to chime in since they would have more specific information.

          All I remember from the conversation was that after describing the intended use for the gravel bikes riding off road and potential bike packing Reynolds recommended we use 631 instead of 853. They didn’t say don’t use 853 for this frame, they believed 631 would ultimately deliver a better frame.

          Based on the success we had with the Raleigh Tamland it made sense for me to continue with 631 as the frame material for the Noble GX1.

  3. Wow great review! Kinda wish I would have got this bike and seeing it in person really show how well built this is. $2499!!!!

  4. Wow, looks great! I like the alloy gx3 too. Never heard of Noble before this random evening visit to bikerumor, cool stuff

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