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Given the implications of its mythological mascot's large footprints, it's little surprise that Yeti Cycles is among the first manufacturers to adopt the new, stiffer, extra-wide Boost rear hub standard. It's also a given that, of the venerable brand's stable, the first model to make use of it would be the SB6 Carbon Mountain Bike Frame, easily recognizable on enduro podiums the world over as Yeti's flagship sled. The only other change made to the SB6 between model years is an update to the shock, which sees the FOX CTD shock to the door in favor of FOX's DPS model. Other than that, the new SB6 remains shrouded in the same confusion. Is at a short DH bike? A plush backcountry explorer? All of the above? We aren't prepared to answer those questions, but we do know that this Yeti's large footprint and Switch Infinity suspension keep it glued to the earth, regardless of application.
The Switch Infinity suspension system is a big reason why the SB6 is so versatile. Switch Infinity originally replaced the Switch Link design, which experiences a momentary harshness when rapidly successive hits kept it hovering above the 30% stroke point. The new design has a more linear travel arc, so the eccentric link changes direction without getting caught in that minute dead spot. Of course, 95% of all riders won't ever push the Switch Link hard enough to experience this dead spot, but Yeti (being Yeti) went ahead and fixed it anyway. For those of us who are our own mechanics, Yeti also simplified maintaining the Switch Infinity by including easily accessible grease ports, which do away with the need for time-consuming rebuilds.
Other than those two changes, the suspension systems are fairly similar. Like the Switch Link, the Switch Infinity slider travels upward under the first phase of compression, when the SB6 is settling into its sag point. As the rear end compresses deeper, the direction changes, and the DH-inspired slider travels down toward the bottom bracket shell to maintain a steady pedaling platform. This change of direction is smoother, without the above-mentioned dead space, but the effect is the same. Deep in the stroke, it works in conjunction with the upper pivot to produce a vertical wheel path that effortlessly flattens big, square-edged impacts.
The SB6's frame itself returns with minimal changes. There is, of course, the rear triangle, which bulks out to accommodate a Boost axle, but the basic construction is the same. Yeti's carbon fiber ethos involves maintaining a focus on increased efficiency and decreased weight while dialing the geometry to its signature enduro standards. This involves dropping the head tube angle to a slack 65.5 degrees — down a full degree-and-a-half from Yeti's more trail-minded SB5. That, combined with the long top tube, makes for a long, low ride that can handle steep, lumpy terrain with ease and speed.
- Drop-in like a sasquatch with Yeti's enduro king
- Switch Infinity is the missing link in suspension design
- Sub-66-degree head tubes are no longer creatues of mythology
- Long cockpit adds stability to the most foolhardy line selections
- Carbon fiber construction for sleek lines and stiff tracking
- Big foot Boost axle leaves a huge footprint
- Few brands enjoy the enduro reputation of Yeti Cycles
- Item #YTI003J
- Q & A
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
I am not an experienced MTB'r, so I cannot give a very objective review. I am a long time roadie who can hold his own with many of the fastest riders, as well as the long distance guys. That being said, I bought this SB6c as a complete bike through CC. They were most helpful in customizing the bike to suit my needs.
With my road experience being what it is, I have been adapting to off road pretty quickly, and enjoying it a lot. I now own 2 bikes for the trail. A Niner One Nine hardtail, and the Yeti SB6c. As a comparison between the two, the SB6c has made me instantly faster and more capable on just about all trail conditions. With the only exception being climbing with tight uphill turns. And that would be only a very small difference. In every other situation, the SB6c excels. The bike is certainly much more capable than my current skill level, and I will enjoy many years of trying to catch up. The ride is super smooth, with no pedal feedback at all. Handling is superb, and it is amazing how I can recover from mistakes that would have probably had me crashing my hardtail. I will be riding this bike quite a bit over the winter months, and I suspect that I will continue to be completely satisfied with it's performance. Five stars for this great bike.
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
Im very surprised how well this climbs. The Switch infinity allows you to climb with the rear suspension wide open and doesnt rob power from your stroke. I was having a blast climbing and thats rare for me until now... I rode a demo that had an SLX build on it. I would have liked a 46 in the rear but besides that this is an amazing bike. First off i have never felt so confident charging down a hill. You point, it goes... the suspension sucks up more than you would think and you can haul ass. But when i needed to get nimble, its still there. I could corner quick, and stay tight on my turns if i needed to. This bike is worth it.
I just started a chat to ask some questions about this frame, then Zane, told me that he can build the bike for a great price and yes, he did it! It was a very nice experience, now i have my dream bike and works great in my local trails. Thanks Competitive for everything!
Yeti in Taos
The SB6 just chews it up and spits it out!!
Reigning Enduro World Series champion
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
I've been riding the SB6 extensively for just over 6 months now. I know how this bike rides and how it compares to other bikes in the 6 inch travel all mountain/enduro category. After experimenting with different suspension setups and finding a good balance there, I've found no limits with the SB6. This bike absolutely rips and sits at the top of its category for both downhill prowess and pedaling efficiency. This was my every day bike for all types of terrain. Despite being designed as an enduro race bike, it's light and efficient enough to be your cross country and trail bike too.
The SB6 has a long wheelbase, a generously slack 65.5 degree head angle, and not-too-short 17.4" chainstays. This long and slack geometry in combination with the Switch Infinity suspension platform give us a bike that is incredibly stable. You can ride technical terrain comfortably on this bike. At higher speeds the bike hugs the ground and feels very planted. Like to get a little airborne? Great, the SB6 does not shy away from jumps.
With bikes in this category, especially one long and slack like this Yeti, you often sacrifice climbing performance. This is not the case with the Yeti. The Switch Infinity suspension climbs better than any 6 inch travel bike I've ridden to date. Somehow the Switch Infinity is able to achieve a high degree of anti-squat yet remain supple and planted for rough/technical climbs. When you hit square edged bumps the suspension almost propels you forward. Despite the long wheelbase and chainstays the SB6 still does pretty well on slow speed tight trails, though the front wheel may require a bit of extra attention to keep it pointed forward- especially on tight switchbacks.
The Yeti corners quite well. It sags nicely into the midrange of the travel and rails turns with confidence. Shift your weight forward and push into the corners- the bike will stay planted.
Descending on the SB6 is a joy. You can choose to point and shoot, smashing over the gnarliest lines and the bike will soak it up. The nastiest square-edged hits become nothing but a speed bump. The SB6 caters to a more playful riding style as well for those of you who prefer to choose tighter lines, slash berms, and hit trail features. The rear suspension is very lively allowing you to pump rollers and the backside of rocks to gain speed. There is no "dead" feeling to the rear suspension like certain other designs that soak up all your energy.
Please reach out to me directly if you have any questions or are considering purchasing this bike. I can offer some insight into sizing and setup. I know how this bike rides and would be happy to share my experience.
Feel free to shoot me an email or give me a call. I can help out with custom builds and parts recommendations as well.
801 736 6396 ext. 4801
Big travel classic!
Tried and true- one of the mtn bike classics. The kit calculator may not show all available options for a custom build but if we have it on the site we can build it. If you need help feel free to contact me direct.
801-736-6396 x 4074
Is this actually the sb6c or what ?
Hey Ramon - This is actually the 2016 Carbon SB6. Feel free to contact me directly with any additional questions.
- Kyle L. - Expert Gearhead - firstname.lastname@example.org - 801-736-4337
I am 6'3" and apparently right on the fence between L and XL.
Any thoughts on which frame size to go for? I ride an XL ASR-5c XL, but feel it's a bit of a tank.
Hey Tom - I think you would be best suited with an XL in the Yeti SB6C. What is your inseam length? You could go Large with a longer stem if you want a more nimble bike. I am 6'1" with a 33" inseam and definitely preferred the Large frame. Feel free to contact me directly to discuss your options or with any additional questions. - Kyle L. - Expert Gearhead - email@example.com - 801-736-4337
inseam is 34.5. I have a L on order with CC, but thinking of changing to XL.
I am thinking XL might be the way to go for you.
Hey Tom, I'm solving the same issue with my new SB6. I've almost the same height and inseam as you. What do you ride finally - L or XL and what do you think about your choice?
Hi, Do I need a 12x148mm rear hubs for this or new boost axle wheelset? Thank you!
Hey Jeanette - You will need a Boost wheelset for the new Yeti SB6C which has a 12 x 148mm Boost rear axle. Feel free to contact me directly to discuss your options and I would be glad to help you build a new Yeti SB6C. - Kyle L. - Expert Gearhead - firstname.lastname@example.org - 801-736-4337