I only have about 200 miles on my 2017 Roker Comp, but here are my initial impressions:
Purchase – The Raleigh corporate discount was too good to pass up (I could not find a similarly spec’d carbon gravel/adventure bike for less than $2000). I received the bike about a week after ordering. My bike had a bent rear derailleur hanger because the derailleur was resting unprotected directly against the side of box. A simple fix would be to ship bikes with the rear derailleur unattached. Raleigh sent a new hanger, but it took them 3 weeks.
Assembly – Easy for anyone with a little bit of experience working on bikes.
Fit and Contact Points – No issues with fit, just the usual fine-tuning. I’m 6’ tall with “normal” proportions and got the 58cm. The Raleigh saddle was OK, but I swapped it out for my personal favorite (Specialized Toupe). I didn’t like the shape of the drops on the Raleigh handlebar and replaced it with the same FSA compact that I have on my other bikes. I like the grippy bar tape.
Frame/Fork – Finish and construction appear to be excellent. Having an otherwise internally routed shifter cable exposed below the bottom bracket is an odd design decision and I’ll be curious to see if this leads to shifting issues over time. I like that Raleigh spec’d a standard threaded bottom bracket. Tire clearance is excellent, but not without limits. Out of curiosity, I tried a 29x1.95 Specialized Renegade and 29x2.0 Maxxis Beaver—neither tire would fit. 45mm (1.8) seems to be the limit for 700c tires. Eventually I’ll pick up a 27.5 wheelset and experiment with wider mountain bike tires. The Roker frame isn’t specifically designed for a dropper post, but you could easily repurpose the front derailleur cable route and the Di2 hole in the seat tube for a stealth dropper post installation. I like that the fork is 15mm thru axle because if you want to use different wheels there are lots more 15mm mtb options to choose from than 12mm road.
Wheelset and Tires – No complaints about the wheelset. The confirmed weight is 1860 grams (1000 rear, 860 front). The unbranded hubs (Novatec?) spin smoothly. The rims are tubeless ready and come pre-taped so you just need valve stems. I have a nice set of Hope/Stan’s Crest wheels I’ll put on the Roker eventually, but the stock wheels are good enough that I’m not in a hurry. The “non-tubeless” Clement MSO tires have been a pleasant surprise. I set them up tubeless without any trouble and they hold air better than most of the actual tubeless tires I’ve owned. My typical ride on the Roker includes a mix of road, gravel and single track so there’s no perfect tire, but the MSO’s have been outstanding for most surfaces. I’ve been running 35 psi front and 38 psi rear for mixed surface rides.
Drivetrain – 1x vs 2x was not a big factor in my purchase. They both have their advantages/disadvantages and I would have been fine with either. I’ve been riding Shimano STI equipped road and cyclocross bikes for 15+ years and the Roker is my first experience with a SRAM road groupset. I’m still getting used to the Double Tap shifters, but so far I’d give a slight edge to Shimano STI (more precise and less prone to miss shifts). The 42x11-42 combo was OK, but most of my rides include long and relatively steep climbs so I replaced the 11-42 with an 11-46. So far, the 11-46 is low enough, but I might pick up a 38T or 40T chainring for special occasions.
Brakes – Hydraulic brakes were a prerequisite for any gravel bike I was considering. The SRAM HydroR brakes are awesome. The Roker uses post mount vs the newer flat mount road standard. I'm not aware of flat mount having any real advantage except they are more "future-proof".Ride and Handling – In general I’m happy if a bike fits well and works for its intended purpose(s)—the Roker does both. My last “gravel” bike was an old aluminum cyclocross bike and the Roker is a big improvement in pretty much every way. It should come as no surprise that the Roker excels on gravel. The long wheelbase, thin seat stays and wide tires add up to a comfortable ride on rough surfaces. On the road it rides like, well, a road bike with 40mm tires. Heavier, but not unlike my Cervelo R5, i.e. classic road bike handling. With a nice set of road tires I would be perfectly happy using the Roker for rides that are 100% road. The frame is plenty stiff where you want it to be, i.e. bottom bracket area, and feels responsive pedaling out of the saddle. On single track it rides like a drop bar 29er with skinny tires. The Roker is fun on easy single track, but obviously no substitute for an actual mountain bike when conditions get rough/technical. Although, with a dropper post and 27.5 wheels I think you could push the envelope. If you're familiar with the PNW I've ridden the Roker on the Grand Ridge, Tiger Mtn and Olallie trails without feeling too underbiked.