The SB140 has a nice upright position for climbing with the 77-degree seat tube angle and 460mm reach on the size medium. The firm pedaling platform means that I didn't feel the need to lock out the rear shock on anything but the most onerous of paved climbs. Despite that efficient pedaling platform, there's good traction on climbing trails scattered with rock obstacles and slippery roots and when fire roads get steep with loose gravel.
While the front end feels like it's a long way in front of you on the SB140, it tracks well. Although I did find the length of the bike noticeable when making my way around tight switchbacks. I also found that it took a bit of an effort to maneuver the SB140 up big square-edged steps. This was especially noticeable during my time in Moab, Utah. While there's enough standover height for shorter riders and Yeti's size range for the medium is 5'5" - 5'11", it definitely feels bigger than mediums from some other brands, and from Yeti's previous generation, so I would keep that in mind if you're between sizes.
All in all, while you're not going to win any climbing segments on the SB140, it's an incredibly dependable climber and it will get you to the top of the climb with plenty of energy left for the fun part. Descending
Despite riding it for months, every time I took the Yeti SB140 out, I was shocked by how fast it could go when you pointed it down a straight section of trail or a rock slab. Yet even when I felt like I was going Mach 10, I felt in control and the bike felt stable and composed.
Some of the most fun I had on the SB140 was when I took it to the Whistler Bike Park. Normally, I prefer tech trails to A-Line laps, but on the SB140 I felt so comfortable at speed, in bermed corners, and in the air, that I wanted to keep lapping jump trails all day and whipping the back end quickly around turns. The orange speed demon was forgiving with mistakes and didn't blow through its travel easily, despite having much less travel than most bikes in the line-up for the chair lift.
Back home in Squamish, I found that the one place that the SB140 struggled a bit more was on steep technical descents with tight trees and lots of cornering, where even the strongest of riders have to grab fistfuls of brakes to slow down. The bike didn't feel as composed and stable under braking, and the smaller wheels didn't make their way through chunky holes and over roots the same way that a 29er would.
While you could race the SB140, a better option for a racer is Yeti's SB150 with slightly more travel and bigger wheels, and the SB130 is a better all-rounder for big days in the mountains. My favourite laps on the SB140 had lots of alternate line options, wider bermed corners, and good lines of sight so that I could hoot and holler without my fingers on the brake levers. Dream rides on it are party laps in the Whistler Bike Park and riding in the middle of a pack of friends in a social race.
“So Campbell, 1h ride, zero watts, 27ft vert and 0.3mile ridden? We are worried about you! We just hammered a super hardcore fireroad run on our SB130s, 34miles and 2500 verts, you better step it up or we won’t accept you to come with us on the Fellowship 100miler in Utah in September. We are there to get into all time top 1000 and we won’t allow you to mess it up for us! Remember Richard? He started dirt jumping, his Vo2max got screwed, we no longer tell him about rides and Finnley charges him more for implants. He is about to lose his wife and she’ll take his Corvette. Oh BTW! Henry saw you rolling on alu rims to a skatepark. I am writing this because I am a friend of yours, still a friend: Get a grip! We won’t be giving you kudos until you start real mountain biking. I’ll setup a few Gravel challenges on Strava later during the day and expect you to accept them and complete them.
Dr Carl Jeffrey Ford
Waiting for this to happen: - Dad? How big are your wheels? - erm... 27.5. - What does that mean? - inch is a awkward measure for countries who went to the moon, their citizens got guns but can't get milimiteres, the only Americans using milimiters program Mars landers and microdose mushrooms... milimeters, the mm go for microdose mushrooms. They make you smarter. Where was I going with this... ekhem, your brothers are 20" Yours are 24", moms 26", mine a 27,5" - Are there bigger ones? Like 28" or 29"? - yes off course but they... - so why don't you get bigger ones you'll be faster. - awkward silence. Did you do your homework?! Did you prepare your clothes for tomorrow?! Did you made the bed?! Brushed your teeth?! What is your problem?! I didn't raise you like that!!!
Great review though, my comment is not intended to PB but more to this narrative the industry is increasingly pushing up.
1) there's the type that uses the bike that is available to them to go gravel/mixed-surface/adventure riding because that's what they wanted to do. Back then that probably meant an xc hardtail or a cyclocross bike.
2) the second type is the guy that rides gravel because he needs somewhere to ride the new trendy bike that he just bought.
It's a chicken or the egg thing? Which came first, the gravel biker or the gravel bike?
I guess, with the new 32 inch wheels coming out soon.
Nice looking bike, doesn't sound like it knows what it wants to be, comparable to a Bronson but not as composed and not as good for climbing, less travel than a Bronson but better for a bike park, sounds like Yeti missed the mark.
Odd, short travel and long, should be long travel and long, but oh well.
All bikes have a beginning, there was a time when 26" bikes sucked balz.
A wheel is a wheel, any bike can be made to ride well with any size wheel, it's the industry BS that sells bikes, not actual performance.
I have the choice of any bike and any wheel size, but even my Pistola is rolling on 27.5 most of the time.
totally ain’t dead.
Let me go over this again, slowly.
The joke was that 26" is slow, I clarified that when someone commented people couldn't take sarcasm, and in another comment, stated I couldn't tell the difference in speed. So get down off your high horse, realise that there's nothing to get butt hurt over because I'm having a laugh, and maybe just do a bit more reading before you start jumping on your keyboard.
... any bike can be stretched out for stability, but that doesn’t make it playful and poppy. Actually, quite the opposite.
Are you sure you ride BMX? I can think of way more fun bikes that are actually short and poppy.
And yes, I was on flow team for Fit and fbm and Vans, have shots in ride mag...
You can consider buying a 29er mountain bike if:
You have a height of at least 180cm
You find passing over obstacles a challenging task (the larger wheel will help you overcome them easier)
You’re looking to achieve a higher rolling speed
I don't meet criteria 1 but I like a challenge and prefer to pump, jump and pick my lines! Just pulled the trigger on a new bike and it wasn't a 29!
It is nice to see a reviewer who isn't 6ft+ for a change.
1. 27.5 aren't fast
2. And 29ers arent't fun.
Pinkbike Commenters on each one: Thank you for finally reviewing a 27.5 I thought you never would!
Either way, I think that it makes sense to review more 29ers, as for most people, they make more sense. Yes you can get more playful on a 27.5 bike, but a large portion of riders are xc dads and trail warriors, not bros auditioning for Tom Caldwell's next rut blasting edit. Yes Rowdiness has its place and many benefit from smaller wheels but I would say the majority of people are served by the pedaling advantages of 29ers. Now for my personal opinion this makes sense, as In my experience I have found that 29ers are more playful than 27.5 is fast, especially on flatter, more pedally trails.
Soooo, the Ripmo is 29”, not 27.5”
Also, pedaling advantages of 29” bikes are great for fire roads but not tight single track, switchbacks, etc...
And on your point aboyt single track, 29ers are so much better at climbing over obstacles than 27.5 bikes are.
If you have to use different types of bikes to prove your point, you don’t really have one...
People didnt invent racing to make a living people started racing because it's FUN.
The ideal that tail whipping over and over is more fun then ripping down a dangerous trail at high speed on the edge of control doesn't compute.
You’re confused, racing has never been about fun, it’s about being the best at something. Which usually requires hard work, again hard work is not fun.
Fun on the other hand, is about relaxing with your friends, stopping mid ride to check out a drop or a jump, not worrying about if you took the fastest line or what ever...
Not all the time but seeing the fruits of my labor is definitely fun.
It's like there's more then one kind of person 8n this world or something ...
A 27.5 is fast. I can ride mine like lightning. Aaron Gwin or Richie Rude can ride one and make it look like your 29er is sitting still by comparison. Is it the best choice to win World Cup races? Maybe not. If that's the case maybe 29ers are faster, but that doesn't mean a 27.5 can't be fast.
but with those gaps on the sides it ain't exactly "solid". Clearly a bit of "form over function".
Nitpicking. The bike looks sick.
It does look sick though
Yeti accused me of lying when I emailed them to clarify. Said I must have dropped my frame on a rock for that damage.
Yeti is a joke and is more marketing company than bike company.
Yes, I'm a bit bitter.
I'm on a Banshee Titan now and am much happier. Burlier bike and much more balanced with a CS length commensurate to longer reach.
Why are you complicating this with your fancy number speak?
when I went from 26 to 27.5 I really thought the world had changed (like square edges and hits no longer existed), but when I went from 27.5 to 29 I just thought I was swimming in wheels.
Honest question here....
What is the "b" in 650b. And also the "c" in 700c?
Im too lazy for google and reading. I just want answers fed to me, (Because I want to be a Millenial)
Also, last time I checked all my motos, my left hand operated a clutch, not a brake.
Lucky...Id take a ride over coffee any day.
Thats what she said
She spends almost no time talking about the suspension performance, and a lot of time talking about how long the bike felt on the climbs and the descents. Perhaps you were pushed toward bermy jump trails because you were on a bike that was too large? It also seemed to be your chief complaint when comparing to the Santa Cruz, which had a 31mm shorter reach and proportionally shorter wheelbase. Wouldn't both of these issues be solved by comparing to a small SB140?
Wheelbase: 1176 (Yeti) vs 1191 (SC),
Reach: 430 (Yeti) vs 436 (SC),
Chainstay 433 (Yeti) vs 430 (SC),
Stack 594 (Yeti) vs 602 (SC).
These bikes are nearly identical at these sizes. Wouldn't the size Small Yeti offer you the shorter wheelbase you prefer for technical descents, a slacker head angle, and steeper seat angle, while otherwise providing nearly identical fit?
Maybe Im wrong, but difference in fork offset? Yeti has shorter
Hi Sarah, do you not think that maybe why you found it not as confident on steep tight off piste type trails is because the bike was a little big / long for you? And had you sized down would have been ok?
Or do you think its down to the wheels / what you are used to riding?
Or is it a particular fault / trait with this bike?
Yea, i tried a much longer bike recently on my local trails. Flat out down semi-steep trails was mega fun, but very steep twisty chutes with trees on corners was much worse - not only were my arms completely stretched out in front of me to be able to get my ar5e far back enough, but the length of the big was harder to corners too.
"...not only were my arms completely stretched out in front of me to be able to get my ar5e far back enough..."
Just when I was starting to question your credibility, you let this gem slip out and erased any doubt.
Maybe I didn’t explain that very well.
Normal I’m center (with weight behind front axle)
But on a really long bike, my arms are too stretched out and it makes me feel like I’m fighting the bike.
Probably just a lack of confidence riding a bike too big for me.
Based on my measurements, published wheelbase of a Medium Bronson.3 is correct.
Thabks buddy, I’m fine on my bike - i was talking about a demo bike too long for me.
They might not be "diehard fans", but maybe just don't give a shit about race results or being the absolute fastest.
"part of what Yeti calls the Rip category – bikes best suited to having fun and exploring outside the race tap"
I mean, you paraphrased Yeti themselves right there: this is not a race bike. And guess what? Most riders _are not racers_... So it's not so much anyone wants 27.5 specifically, they just don't want to make sacrifices simply for the sake of pure speed.
(Yes, everyone says "you get used to the big wheels", but some people would rather spend that "getting used to" credit towards throwing even more shapes and flicking through even tighter trails.)
Or maybe the rider just struggles with these sections?
Bike reviews that imply the bike can do more than the rider are crazily stupid but you read shit like this all the time. Its bollocks
I have changed from 26 to 29 a year ago, so I still remember.
If you're going to make shit up, make it plausible. Anyone can simply scroll up and see for themselves that you're talking out of your hole.
Another thing that she actually says is that she prefers the Roubion or Bronson (27.5 bikes) for tight tech. That doesn't fit your bullshit anti-29er narrative very well either does it?
I'm just a bit annoyed at the keyboard warriors who claim to know more about this bike and how it rides than the reviewer, a Squamish local who literally does this for a living. There's more than a whiff of sexist bullshit in the air.
A bike really boils down to suspension kinematics and geometry (assuming similar build kit). The fact is, the geometry on the Bronson and a size small Yeti is very similar (reach, HA, wheelbase, chain stay).
In comparing the 429 reach Bronson to the 460 reach Yeti Sarah spent the whole comparison discussing the difference as a function of wheelbase length. The fact is, the size Small Yeti would fit her identically to the Bronson, and the wheel base would be identical as well. So just pick a different size so we can compare based on the kinematics.
How would a medium Bronson fit the same as a small SB140? The Bronson has a 598mm TT vs. 567mm on the SB140. That is quite short for a 5’7” rider, esp. one with an XC background.
This is why the industry is moving towards using reach (distance from BB center to steer tube center). Regardless of seat tube angle, you are always going to adjust your seat tube and saddle position so that your hips are in a similar position relative to the BB - you have to do this in order to pedal efficiently, which is the same position regardless of bike.
If I take a bike that has the same reach, same stack heigh, similar chain stay length, and same HT angle, those bikes will ride the same (from a geometry perspective), regardless of how long and what angle you connected a TT from the HT to the ST.
I understand reach and stack and where you were going with your original comment.
What I was trying to point out that it isn't always as simple when comparing two bikes with the same reach. While the two bikes will feel the same while descending, a bike with a 77 deg. STA is going to feel much shorter while climbing and pedaling with the seat up compared to a 74/75 STA.
This is often an issue when you are between sizes. Sizing down to get closer to an ideal reach can often result in a very cramped position/too small (and hitting knees on the bars) while climbing/pedaling on bikes with steep STA’s like the Yeti.
high anti-rise (greater than 100%) = rear end of bike compressing while using rear brake
low anti-rise (less than 100%) = rear end of bike extending while using rear brake
does this imply that the extension of suspension during braking equates to better suspension performance while the compression of the rear suspension during braking degrades suspension performance (as you put it 'rear suspension stops working')?
Ideal pedaling position is about the location of your hips relative to the BB. The seat post can be moved up or down (y axis) and your saddle can be moved forwards or backwards (x axis) to accomplish the same position of hips relative to BB.
Effective top tube doesn't matter as much as reach, so long as you are within the margin of adjustment for the saddle height and fore/aft positioning. That is why every time we hear about a bike with a "too slack" seat tube angle, the reviewer quickly mentions that this was adjusted for by sliding the saddle forward a couple of cms.
personally, i had a spec phenom saddle that i liked (ti rails) so i bought the sworks version to lose some weight. turned out that the rail position was totally different - it was shifted forward by probably 2cm vs the ti-rail version. this meant that i actually had to go back to my ti-rail saddle because i wanted to push the saddle a bit farther forward.
thankfully the road bike fit works well with the expensive saddle or i would have been really annoyed (not to mention out $270 for nothing)!
Obviously you wouldn't ride a medium Bronson if you were looking for 460ish mm of reach, you size up to the large. That's not a good comparison at all.
Struggled compared to what? Other "fun" 140/160 bikes? 160/170 enduro race bikes? A DH race bike? An old skool freeride bike?
Because my 140/150 27.5 fun bike is just at home in straight jump lines as ripping tight corners through the trees. So it would be nice to know if there is something about this bike's rear suspension kinematics under braking that makes it act up under hard braking, or if you're for some weird reason comparing to another category of bike all-together. Maybe it's the geo: too long of a front-center (because that reach is f*cking long) compared to rear-center and it's harder to weight the front wheel and it can feel sketchy driving hard into steep corners. Does the Bronson "struggle" in the same conditions? No to mention that steep corners are always going to be more work than no-braking straights and berms.
Dudes, you already have a larger percentage of MTB being sold and most of the reviews and articles. Why can you just be happy with that. You win, there you go. You are much faster and rollover easier, so go ahead and celebrate your victory. I, for one, am happy for you.
We the losers, will just lick our wounds and wipe our tears riding into the sunset. We'll be joined by other know nothing, skill-less, losers that prefer small wheels like Semenuk, Lacundeguy, Zink, Lopes, Gwin, Bruni, Aggazis, Bryceland, Wilmer, MacAskill, Brosman or the McCauls. I am sure we are all wrong, and have no valid reasons to like smaller wheels. We are all such idiots.
I'll take that over Yeti's previous design every day (if i was going to consider one of thir frame), even if, to me, it was slightly more appealing.
I acknowledge someone might think otherwise.
Personally I don't use a mudguard for my fork as my forks have a rearward facing arch too and for me that's sufficient. I wipe them of after the ride and I'm good. If I need to clean them wet, I do so upside down, wipe them dry upside down again and they've always been fine for every lower leg service.
Nico Vink had a leftover Ransom frame for me so I’m riding that now and I sold the SB140. But don’t get me wrong, I have nothing but good words about that Yeti...
Yeti's prices are right in line with most of the major players in this industry for comparable build kit (Santa Cruz, Specialized, Ibis, etc.) If we are talking about a premium of a couple hundred bucks on a complete build, and you like the way it rides, looks, the brand, etc...you probably don't care.
Also - Switch Infinity started as a sealed, counter rotating bearing idea way back when it was first introduced. They later got rid of this for the simpler version you see here today. A car riding on 2 rails is pretty simple.
I initially laughed at the little wheels heading but I can't think of any current 26" bikes. I think we've officially hit the point where 27.5" really is the little wheel option.
I think which one is faster is very dependent on the trail. Lots of tight turns, without many high speed sections? 27.5 may very well be faster.
Would I go back to 27.5? No, but I like to smash and hop straight through and into rough stuff, not dance around it. I think if I went back, I would most miss the larger wheels on technical ups. You just don't get hung up on the roots and rocks that give you trouble on 27.5 wheels as much.
Can't help but think for medium sized riders this would hit a sweet spot.
27.5 bikes were the answer to engineers inability to truly make 29 work and when they dropped to that wheels size everything just fit perfect and all the geos they had developed for 29er made a 27.5 butter.
So now engineers have updated 29ers but why drop that technology down to 27.5? I don't get this industry at all.
You know what would be fun on this bike? Technical lines. Instead of focusing on going from A to B in the fastest way possible use the agile wheel size to get creative with lines.
I do agree with her that the longer trend has it's drawbacks. There's a point where a bike is just too long for you to be able to maneuver it naturally and comfortably.