REVOLT 1 (2020)
The Giant Revolt 1 (2020) is a new model for this year. It’s a modern gravel bike that is designed for multi-day adventure rides, rail trails and even commutes.
In this preview, I’ll explain who the Revolt 1 is designed for and touch on key components.
WHO IS IT FOR?
You should consider the Revolt 1 if:
One, you’re a mountain biker or road rider who wants a training bike that you can ride over Winter and develop base fitness. It’s also a convenient option for those who don’t have the time to drive out to the trails.
Two, you love the thought of a road bike. But it’s been a while. And realistically, your local roads are in poor repair or the majority of them are unsealed.
Three, you want a versatile road bike that can be ridden on almost any sealed and unsealed road surface. And more importantly, you want a road/gravel/cyclo-cross bike where you’re positioned in an upright and relaxed seating position. In other words, you have poor flexibility.
The Revolt 1 uses Giant’s ALUXX aluminium frame.
It’s light and more importantly features new technology that is really worth mentioning:
The new Revolt frame uses thru-axles. These axles are much, much bigger than traditional quick-release axles.
To increase the Revolt’s torsional (twisting) stiffness. This always equates to better handling. Through corners especially, the bike tracks along the ground better (more accurately).
Power transfer also improves.
Because the frame is stiffer torsionally, all the power you put into the Revolt gets transferred into forward motion. This is beneficial up climbs, where there’s a lot more load on the frame.
Giant uses their D-Fuse post. The post is designed to flex (forwards and backwards) significantly more than a circular post. This absorbs any vibrations and impacts (especially to the lower back). This ensures you can ride longer and more comfortably.
Compared to last year’s Toughroad SLR, the frame geometry has been changed slightly. Without turning into a geometry nerd and in basic language, the Revolt’s handling and steering has been sharpened. The backend has also been shortened to deliver power faster to the rear wheel.
THE DRIVE TRAIN
The Revolt 1 uses a Shimano Tiagra 20-speed gear system. That’s two gears on the front and 10 sprockets on the back.
Tiagra is a great mid-level groupset.
Gear shifts are very smooth and precise. And once components do wear out, it’s very cost-effective to replace.
All the controls are at your fingertips; upshift, downshift and brake. You never have to take your hands off the handlebars. Hood design is very ergonomic; borrowing design cues from Shimano’s higher-end components.
An FSA Omega crankset is used instead of Shimano because it delivers better gear ratios that will suit the intended purpose of the Revolt 1. It’s an external bearing crankset too.
That’s important. Because:
External bearings are larger in diameter. As such they last longer and don’t flex as much, helping deliver power more smoothly to the Revolt’s frame. The bearings are also completely sealed, protecting against dirt, water and mud.
An 11-tooth to 34-tooth cassette delivers a very broad gear range. The 34-tooth rear sprocket will definitely make climbs a lot easier. A blessing if you’re just starting out. And who likes climbing hills anyway?
Are a semi-hydraulic system. It’s called the Giant Conduct SL braking system.
Shimano does not make a Tiagra-level hydraulic lever. So instead of taking the easy route and using a full mechanical brake system, Giant chose to develop the Conduct SL.
This way, you get the full benefits of hydraulic disc brakes.
One, more power and much better control - especially on steep descents.
Two, less overall maintenance and better reliability.
And lastly they work in all weather conditions; wet or dry.
They are set up tubeless from stock.
If you’ve never experienced tubeless, these are the benefits:
One, instead of a tube a liquid sealant is used instead. If you get a puncturer, the sealant plugs the hole and repairs it. But only as long as the hole isn’t too big (less than 3mm).
Still it saves you from putting a new tube in when you get a puncture.
Second, it’s the ride quality. There’s no friction between the tube and the inside of the tyre. This results in a feeling of smoothness and increases grip.
And lastly, tubeless is faster. The tyres can be used at a lower pressure and this gives them the ability to deform and absorb road vibrations, muting them.
XS, S, M, M/L, L, XL
ALUXX grade aluminium, 12mm thru-axle
Advanced grade composite, full composite OverDrive steerer, 12mm thru-axle
Giant Contact XR D-Fuse, 31.8mm
Giant Contact, 8 degree
Giant D-Fuse, alloy
Giant Contact, Neutral
Shimano Tiagra, 20sp
Giant Conduct SL brake semi-hydraulic disc, 160mm
Shimano HG500, 11-34T, 10sp
FSA Omega, 32-48T
Giant SX2, disc tubeless
Giant sport disc, 28H
Stainless steel, 14g
Giant CrossCut AT2 tubeless, 700x38mm wide