Proudfoot Cycle founders Jon and Erin Acuff.
The 125-millimeter-travel Prime is one of two dual-suspension designs offered by Proudfoot Cycles in Golden, Colorado. Founder Jon Acuff came from the aerospace industry in Southern California. Jon decided to try his hand at frame building, which struck a chord and inspired he and his wife Erin to found Proudfoot Cycles and move to Golden Colorado. Jon says he is directly related to the Wright brothers, who also were bicycle makers, and his creations reflect the famous duo's pension for meticulous construction as well as their distaste for nonessential accouterments or ornamentation. Proudfoot's philosophy is "Rugged Precision," and their choice of material is chromoly steel.
The five-inch-travel Prime chassis has a single-pivot rear suspension that pivots on a sealed-bearing Cane Creek headset. The elevated chainstay design, says Jon was chosen because it allowed him to use straight tubes to construct the triangulated swingarm. Smaller diameter frame tubes optimize the strength of the material, and external guides for the cable-housing and hoses ensure that the tubes will not be compromised by drilling holes to route them internally. The bottom bracket shell is threaded, which should make traditionalists jump for joy, as will the provision for a single water bottle. Welding and construction is excellent and, in spite of its simple design, the chassis looks sharp.
Cut-away swingarm boss and a look at the Cane Creek headset pivot bearings.
External cables allow for slender, lighter frame tubes.
Threaded bottom bracket and pedal-optimized swingarm pivot.
Simple brake caliper mounts. Dropouts are sourced.
The right stay is elevated to clear the chain,and help provide tire clearance.
Jon says that the Prime is convertible from 29-inch wheels to 27.5+ and the rear axle spacing is 148 Boost. With its RockShox Monarch damper, the medium sized frame is said to weight 7.25 pounds (3.3kg), which is quite respectable for a steel suspension chassis. Frames run $2750 USD and three builds are offered, which run from $6510 for the Race model, to $5050 for the Adventure option. Sizes are small, medium and large and five colors are available, including clear-coated raw steel. Proudfoot Cycles sells direct to customers through their web store.
Riders searching for a simple to maintain and rugged trail bike should check out this one.
A look at the lightweight clamp that retains the swingarm's pivot shaft.