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Thread: Sb100 vs sb4.5

  1. #1
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    Sb100 vs sb4.5

    I'm going to preface this post with we all have different perspectives and look for different characteristics in a bike. What may be the perfect bike for some may not be the perfect bike for others. Our riding terrain, type of dirt, and idea of mountain biking is all subjective and the industry is making a killing as a result. Which is really my angle when writing this comparison. IMHO bike companies are overlapping models, utilizing 2 wheel sizes, and making minor tweaks to geo and components to overcomplicate this sport. Which generates more sales / buzz and in my opinion is exactly what Yeti did with the SB100. I think they will eventually modify the SB4.5 to SB120 with 120mm of travel, slacken the HA, stiffen up the frame, and widen the rear triangle/ allow wider tires to separate itself from the sb100. But for now, these two bikes are only slightly differentiated. Below are my thoughts.

    I'm 41 and have been mountain biking for about 12 years. My past is motocross and BMX. My past and age make me a cautious aggressive rider that stays within my limitations.

    Bike builds I compared are as pictured, pretty much built identical.

    If you own a Yeti with Switch Infinity, then you know how amazing the design is. If you've never ridden one, in short detail, the system rides high in its travel, ramps up very well to keep you from wallowing in your mid-stroke, does an excellent job with small bump compliance, and does not easily bottom out on larger hits. Because of these traits, it can ride a little harsher through chunkier sections at high speeds. However its not that drastic compared to other designs and its a trade off I'll gladly accept with how stable and efficient it is. Overall its my favorite design out right now with Ibis's version of DW my 2nd choice.

    The obvious differences is the ability to run a water bottle. Not that big of a deal for me as I'm a pack rider. The new cable routing is pretty sweet; the enclosed tubes make for easy routing and a noise free ride. I keep my cables super short on my 4.5 so I don't have the rattling issues some have talked about. However, I'm not going to lie, its a bitch fishing for cables on the 4.5 and the grommet's suck putting back into place. I'm a DIY mechanic and there is always cussing when I'm running/replacing cables on the 4.5.

    Not a lot separating these bikes as far as geometry. I won't over detail but what I will say is at 5'10 the medium sb100 was roomier without the bike feeling too long on the trail. The steeper seat tube, longer top tube, 44mm off set fork and 68 degree HA made for a really nice ride and I liked being able to run a 50mm stem. The SB100 with 100mm of travel rear and 120 front also felt "slightly" more balanced over the SB4.5

    The SB100 is the epitome of precision. The stiff frame, SI system, slightly steeper head angle and new shorter 44mm offset fork makes this bike point and shoot like no other bike I've ridden. From a cornering and line choice perspective, I was grinning ear to ear on this bike. However thats where it ended for me on the highlights of this bike compared to the SB4.5. While this characteristic was noticeable over the SB4.5 it was not enough to win me over.

    The SB100 is a kick ass bike and quite capable but not as capable as the SB4.5. Yes it felt a little sharper handling in the turns and picking a line was pure bliss but it didn't excel that much over the SB4.5 in that area. It was also not any faster on the flats or climbs. My personal conclusion is that the SB4.5 is the better of the two. Unless you're a dedicated XC rider that usually keeps the wheels on the ground and #1 preference from a mountain bike is precise steering, the SB4.5 is the way to go as its more capable and confident overall without sacraficing much of anything from an XC standpoint over the SB100.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Sb100 vs sb4.5-sb100.jpg  

    Sb100 vs sb4.5-sb4.5.jpg  

    Last edited by kumquat; 05-23-2018 at 05:07 PM.

  2. #2
    ejj
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    Nice comparison. I may have missed it: were both of these demos?

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    No, I own the SB4.5 and SB5+. The idea was to possibly purchase the SB100 in hopes to separate my two bikes more. My wife and I ride mediums so I get the luxury of having two bikes. I've owned dedicated XC bikes in the past; ASRC, Epic, 429SL, Czar, Anthem, RKT, and Tallboy 1. I preferred the SB4.5 to all of those for XC use and I would prefer the SB100 over that list as well. SB100 is an outstanding bike and anyone will be thrilled with it, I just think for most of us the SB4.5 offers a little more without sacrificing anything the SB100 offers. I will add that super light weight riders might appreciate the SB100's handling characteristics over the SB4.5. There isn't much weight difference between the two bikes but if 25 Lb bikes make a rider fatigued, the precise handling of the SB100 could be beneficial.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kumquat View Post
    the SB4.5 offers a little more without sacrificing anything the SB100 offers.
    Iíd say the other way around give that Nate Hills is racing enduro on the sb100 and the latest yeti tribe video with shawn neer riding the sb100

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    Nice info, thanks kumquat.

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    Good info! I tested a SB4.5 and SB5, loved both of them so pulled the trigger on a Tallboy 3. Still regret that, had my eye on a Turq SB4.5, it's the bike I wanted but couldn't justify the price at the time and didn't like the PF bottom bracket and lack of bottle cage.

    SB100 solves the water bottle problem but still not a fan of the PF BB.

    Loved the way the 4.5 rode, snappy and climbed great but also felt super plush. Sounds like the SB100 is every bit as good...

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfa81 View Post
    Iíd say the other way around give that Nate Hills is racing enduro on the sb100 and the latest yeti tribe video with shawn neer riding the sb100
    Of course he is... He is a Yeti sponsored rider. You think hes going to be on anything but the newest???

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    Quote Originally Posted by mfa81 View Post
    Iíd say the other way around give that Nate Hills is racing enduro on the sb100 and the latest yeti tribe video with shawn neer riding the sb100
    He threw a 130 on the sb100 to make it more capable and in his blog even mentioned he would have yielded similar results on the 4.5. He's racing / selling the latest and greatest.

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    Quote Originally Posted by R_Pierce View Post
    Of course he is... He is a Yeti sponsored rider. You think hes going to be on anything but the newest???
    Rude isn't on the SB100 :-) I haven't ridden the sb100 yeti so can't really compare, but there is no magic thing as being better one way without compromising the other! To say the 4.5 doesn't sacrifices anything would mean it climbs as well as the sb100 but descends better.

    I think it really depends on the rider goal, but you could look one way or the other, but to me I can't think how the sb100 would descend as well as the 4.5 the same way I can't see how the 4.5 would climb as well as the sb100, you gotta choose where you want to compromise!

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    Quote Originally Posted by mfa81 View Post
    Rude isn't on the SB100 :-) I haven't ridden the sb100 yeti so can't really compare, but there is no magic thing as being better one way without compromising the other! To say the 4.5 doesn't sacrifices anything would mean it climbs as well as the sb100 but descends better.

    I think it really depends on the rider goal, but you could look one way or the other, but to me I can't think how the sb100 would descend as well as the 4.5 the same way I can't see how the 4.5 would climb as well as the sb100, you gotta choose where you want to compromise!
    Rude is on a 5.5

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    Quote Originally Posted by ArizRider View Post
    Good info! I tested a SB4.5 and SB5, loved both of them so pulled the trigger on a Tallboy 3. Still regret that, had my eye on a Turq SB4.5, it's the bike I wanted but couldn't justify the price at the time and didn't like the PF bottom bracket and lack of bottle cage.

    SB100 solves the water bottle problem but still not a fan of the PF BB.

    Loved the way the 4.5 rode, snappy and climbed great but also felt super plush. Sounds like the SB100 is every bit as good...
    Why do you regret it? I was in the same boat. Loved the 4.5 , but settled with a tb3 cuz it was barely used by a local racer at 50 percent off with enve wheels and cockpit.

    I donít think the 4.5 does anything the tb3 canít do. I do feel like my Large Tallboy 3 rides a bit bigger then the medium 4.5 I woulda bought. I was also considering a medium rocky instinct and I think the Tallboy 3 is better up , down , and flat (likely do to the wheel upgrade).

    Lots of good bikes these days.

  12. #12
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    I also had a chance to ride the SB100 and SB 4.5 along with the Pivot Trail 429 and Santa Cruz Tallboy. For me, I would definitely go for the SB100. If I wanted more travel, I would go for the SB 5.5. My ride impression are posted at: https://www.dirtmerchantbikes.com/sp...-45-yeti-sb100
    Dirt Merchant Bikes
    www.dirtmerchantbikes.com
    Seattle area dealer for Turner Bikes & Cleary Bikes

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