Video First Look: Shand Shug, an aggressive steel hardtail born from Trillion partnership
The Shand Shug is a stunner of a steel hardtail, born from Shand Cycles partnership with Trillion, the Shug is a gravity fed 130mm trail bike ripe for a long winter's shredding. We've got one for test and took a first look on video below.
If the name Shug sounds familiar, you're not wrong, as a while ago a metals group called Liberty House bought both Trillion Cycles and Shand. The two then paired up in terms of design and manufacturing of the bikes and we regularly saw them frequenting bike shows together last year.
Back in June this year Trillion produced a 130mm 29er hardtail the Shug, it's the same bike we have here but this bike is now being produced in Shand livery, becoming the Shand Shug rather than the Trillion Shug. We spoke to Fraser from Shand who told us that this bike origianlly started life as an extreme hardtail he had his heart set on building. After about a year of toying with the idea and altering the geometry slightly to make a really good 'all-round' hardtail the bike came to fruition as Fraser's 'Hoolet'. The Shug is that very same bike, refined for the customer but with its roots firmly in a prototype designed by Shand staff.
Nothing else has changed, the bike is still the same design and made in the same place, just the colour is different. It looks like this will be the future of these bikes, although the guys at Shand say you can still buy a Shug in the Trillion colourways of you want one, you just need to state which on ordering.
I (Rachael) am a steel bike fan, I actually own a Swarf Curve which is a steel front end, carbon rear, 150mm travel full susser with a high pivot and idler wheel. If you regularly keep an eye on our site then you’ll also know that my longterm test bike is a steel Cotic Rocket (steel front end, alloy rear) therefore you can say I was pretty keen to get my hands on this gorgeous steel trail hardtail.
I really like the change over to Shand colourways, it gives the bike a real premium feel, I like the simple look and as these bikes are made to order you can choose from 30 different colours. On that note, if there is something about the geometry of the bike that you don’t like, Shand will also make changes specifically for you.
Aside from the looks and the material used, I am also excited to ride something with pretty aggressive geometry. Despite its short travel, the Shug is slack and long too, with a seat tube that is short meaning I'm not getting bothered by the saddle in my way on steep descents.
The geometry chart on Shand’s website says the bike has a 64 degree head angle and a 75 degree seat angle putting it firmly in the ‘aggressive trail bike category! The seat tube is nice and short too at 430mm on a medium and the wheelbase comes in a 1209mm on my medium bike. The reach is 445mm so roomy but not super long, although the effective top tube is given as 626mm, it will be interesting to see if that feels a little stretched out despite the steepish seat tube when I am seated.
Although you see a full build here, this bike is sold as a frame and fork for £1,595 or frame only for £995. The fork specced is a 130mm Cane Creek Helm and whilst this isn’t the cheapest hardtail out there you are getting a built to order bike, made in Scotland by the Shand team.
This bike is built to take 29 x 2.6” tyres and 27.5 x 3.0”, ours is set up with the big volume 3 inch 27.5 tyres at the moment but when we spoke to Trillion at Bespoked Bike show earlier this year they told us that 29er wheels are really where they see the forte for this bike. I really want to try the bike with both wheelsets and find out the differences, 29 by 2.6” sounds like a hell of a lot of fun on a 130mm bike! Out of interest, I checked the stated geometry stats and the bike is bang on with a 64 degree headangle.
Our bike has been sent fully built for test but as this is sold as a frame only I’ll be reviewing it as such. The kit on the bike for testing is an XT groupset, a 150mm dropper, Hope 35mm wide wheels and Schwalbe tyres – a 2.8” Magic Mary and Nobby Nic, it's a pretty solid and aggressive setup.
Check back soon for a full review and keep an eye on the site for more hardtail review, we have a few, or varying prices, spec and intentions on test at the moment!
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