A young Seattle mountain bike company has introduced its first frame, a 4-inch-travel racer.
Noble Bikes, based in West Seattle, is the brainchild of Mark Landsaat, an engineer and frame designer who used to work for suspension pioneer Proflex and moved to Seattle from Amsterdam in 2001 to join K2 after the former purchased Proflex.
In 2005 he started Ardiano Design, a consulting business focused on suspension and carbon-fiber frame design. Still an active racer in the expert category (he raced elite for Proflex/K2), Landsaat decided to build the bike he’d like to see on the market.
In 2008 he founded Noble, naming his new venture after the popular Noble Knob epic ride near Mount Rainier. To celebrate his new frame’s debut, Mark rode Corral Pass-Noble Knob-Ranger Creek with a group of friends this past weekend.
The new frame, the F4, retails for $1,495 and is on display at Downhill Zone in the University District. It features an arresting blue paint job and remarkable detail work, especially on the rockers and pivots. The just-under 6-lb. (actual weight) frame is intended to ride very stiff as you’d expect from a racer, and touts custom hardware that lends a distinctive look and sense of craftsmanship to the F4, as well as (in the case of the shock) unique performance capabilities.
Noble is also working on a 5-inch trail bike and has longer-travel in mind as well, although Mark stops short of saying it will go head-to-head with the other Seattle-based boutique mountain bike maker, downhill specialist Evil Bikes.
“They’re evil, we’re noble,” he joked.
We asked Zone’s owner, Adam Schaeffer, to give us the rundown on the F4 feature set.