First Look: Trillion Prime 27.5

by
July 7, 2017

Arriving to much fanfare back in February of this year at the London Bike Show, new British bicycle manufacturer Trillion Cycles has some ambitious goals on what it wants to achieve with its new line of bikes. Looking to produce all of its frames within the UK, Trillion has initially launched with just three models; a singlespeed urban bike called the Node, a titanium road bike called the Twenty Two, and this long travel enduro hardtail called the Prime.

trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
The Trillion brand is still very fresh, but it’s got some ambitious goals on what it wants to achieve in the British cycling market.

We first got a look at the Prime back at the London Bike Show, though more recently we caught up with the crew from Trillion at the Fort William World Cup. There they announced some changes to the original design concept for the Prime, including tweaked geometry and new adjustable dropouts that would allow the use of both 27.5in and 29in wheels.

Now we’ve got a Prime in for a full-blown test, in order to put assumptions to the side and see how it actually handles off road.

trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
Trillion isn’t a prime number is it?

Prime is Trillion’s British built steel AM hardtail designed to be a stable, capable and solid build whilst still being a heap of fun to ride! Using a cocktail of Reynolds 853 and Colombus Zona we’ve built a rig we believe to be capable of tackling the best of what UK trails have to offer whilst keeping the weight surprisingly light” – From Trillion Cycles.

trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
The Prime we have in for testing is the latest prototype from Trillion Cycles.

Trillion Prime Features

  • Made in the UK
  • Reynolds 853 steel front triangle
  • Colombus steel rear end
  • 27.5in and 29in wheelsize compatible
  • Max tyre width: 2.6in
  • Designed for 160mm travel forks
  • 65° head angle
  • 74° seat angle
  • 73mm threaded bottom bracket
  • ISCG 05 chainguide tabs
  • Adjustable horizontal sliding dropouts
  • 420-450mm chain stay length
  • Singlespeed compatible
  • Boost 148x12mm thru-axle
  • Fully external cable routing
  • Available sizes: S/M, M/L, L/XL
  • Frame RRP: £1349
  • Complete bikes available from £3000
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
The paint job and weld aesthetics aren’t particularly clean on our prototype frame, though FYI, Trillion states that production frames will address both of those.

Before we go any further, we should stipulate that what we’ve got here is a prototype frame, and so the finish isn’t quite what you could expect from a production quality frame. In particular, some of the paint is pretty patchy around the main junction points, and while structurally sound, the weld aesthetic is not what you would call slick. That point wasn’t made clear when the Prime popped up in Fresh Goods Friday, so it’s worth reiterating here.

Regardless, Trillion has most certainly been listening to your feedback and has alluded that there are some further changes coming with production models. They’re being a bit cryptic about it, and apparently we’ll find out more in August, so we’ll keep everyone posted once those updates have been confirmed. In the meantime however, we’re keen to rag this bike on our local Calderdale singletrack to see exactly what it’s like to ride.

trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
There’s a mix of Reynolds 853 and Colombus Zona tubing used on the Prime hardtail.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
All cables run externally, except for a small portion of the stealth dropper post line that pops into the seat tube just above the BB.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
To increase standover clearance and to allow a straight line from the head tube to rear dropouts, a small welded brace is used for the upper seat tube.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
The latest prototype is running Paragon-style adjustable dropouts. Chainstay length can be adjusted between 420-450mm and allows the option to run 29in wheels at the most rearward position.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
Built-in tensioners keep the rear dropouts from slipping under hard efforts, and also allow for tuning chain tension with a singlespeed setup.
prime-geo
Speaking of geometry, if you want a closer look at the Prime’s numbers (boom-tish!), click this image to make it bigger.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
There’s 160mm of travel on the front of this beast.

Trillion has designed the Prime around a 160mm travel fork. Interestingly, complete bikes will come with a RockShox Yari RC 29er fork, which Trillion has spec’d in order to allow for compatibility with both 29in wheels, 27.5in wheels, and 27.5+ setups. This was a deliberate design move, and so the frame geometry has been set around the 160mm travel Yari 29er fork, with the idea that riders can experiment with different wheelsizes without need to change forks.

Along with the sliding dropouts and the ability to take 29in or 27.5in wheels, Trillion is keen to flaunt the versatility of the Prime chassis. Of course with the 44mm head tube, there’s room to slide in an angle-adjustable headset, so further tweaking can be had with the head angle and frame geometry for those who feel the need to.

trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
RockShox Yari provides Lyrik-like stiffness and steering, in a more budget friendly package.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail fabric
Keeping the British theme with a Fabric Scoop saddle.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
Thanks to a short seat tube, Trillion has been able to spec a 170mm travel dropper post on the M/L frame size.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
Full SRAM X01 Eagle gearing, complete with carbon fibre crank arms.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
Pointy Eagle chainring all but eliminate the need for a chain device.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
Chain tension duties are handled by a one-way friction clutch inside the main cage pivot of the SRAM X01 rear mech.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
We’re slowly getting used to that enormous 50t sprocket on the 12-speed Eagle cassettes.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
Narrow-wide tooth profiling on the 50t alloy sprocket.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
More Hope goodies on the Prime, this time for the disc brakes. Race Evo Tech E4 stoppers made in Barnoldswick.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
The E4 brakes feature quad-piston callipers for increased stopping power, and are paired up to Hope’s 2-piece rotors.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
The Hope Race brake levers are much slimmer and neater than the Tech brake levers. You’ll need a tiny 2mm hex key to adjust lever reach however.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
The machining on these brakes is so goddamn good.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
More UK goodies! Hope headset and a Renthal Apex stem.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
The bar & stem are of the oversized 35mm variety.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail renthal
Renthal Fatbar Carbon handlebars measure at 780mm wide and use a modest rise to keep the grips down low.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
There couldn’t be any other choice for this bike really.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
Breaking up the British theme is a set of wheels from French wheel experts, Mavic. These are the latest XA Elite wheels that use sculpted alloy rims and cartridge bearing hubs.
trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
Matching Quest Pro tyres use a fast-rolling intermediate tread pattern and a substantial 2.4in wide casing.

Anywho, enough of the glamour shots. You’ll be happy to know that we’ll continue to test the Trillion Prime over the coming weeks as part of a three-way group test for Issue #114 of Singletrack Magazine. If you want to get your hands on the full feature as soon as you can, then head to the subscription page to line up a digital subscription for as little as £1.49 per month – oh yeah!

Need moar info? The Trillion Cycles website is your friend.

trillion prime steel reynolds hardtail
It’s slack, long and made from steel. The Prime looks the goods on paper, but how does it handle on the trail? Stay tuned to find out.

Trillion Prime Specifications

  • Frame // Reynolds 853 & Colombus Zona Steel
  • Fork // Rockshox Yari RC, 160mm Travel
  • Hubs // Mavic XA Elite, 110x15mm Front & 148x12mm Rear
  • Rims // Mavic XA Elite, Hookless, UST Tubeless
  • Tyres // Mavic Quest Pro UST 2.4in Front & Rear
  • Chainset // SRAM X01 Eagle 32t
  • Front Mech // N/A
  • Rear Mech // SRAM X01 Eagle 12-Speed
  • Shifters // SRAM X01 Eagle 12-Speed
  • Cassette // SRAM XG-1295 Eagle, 10-50t, 12-Speed
  • Brakes // Hope Race Evo E4, 180mm Front & 160mm Rear
  • Stem // Renthal Apex 35, 40mm Long
  • Bars // Renthal Fatbar Carbon 35, 780mm Wide
  • Grips // ODI Ruffian Lock-On
  • Seatpost // RockShox Reverb Stealth, mm Diameter, 170mm Travel
  • Saddle // Fabric Scoop Flat
  • Size Tested // M/L
  • Sizes available // S/M, M/L, L/XL
  • Weight // 12.13 kg (26.86 lbs)

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