Yeti SB95 carbon or Pivot Mach 429 Carbon?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
    EXW
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    Yeti SB95 carbon or Pivot Mach 429 Carbon?

    I realize this has been covered before in various forms, with some really informative posts. However, I'm stuck trying to decide between the Yeti and Pivot and would like any additional insights from people that have ridden them.

    Been riding a long time and this will be my first 29'er. I'm mostly a trail rider and keep the drops under 3'. The trails around me are steep and rocky.

    I'm looking for a bike that will help me get through steep technical climbs and then steep, technical descents.

    I've test ridden both bikes and they are both great. The Yeti is very confidence inspiring on the downhill and the Pivot feels very efficient on the uphill. Of course, the Yeti is also great going up and the Pivot descending.

    I know these bikes are slightly different (4" vs 5"). I would run a 120mm fork on either. The reviews I've read and watched, state that the Yeti climbs great and the Pivot feels like it has the suspension feel of a 5" bike. So it's not so easy to classify them.

    Really looking for a do it all and at this price point I think I will get it with either bike.

    So, with that said, I would appreciate the mtbr community's feedback on these two bike. I know there is a lot of info out there, but more couldn't hurt. Plus it may help others in the same situation.

    Over all, I'm lucky as hell to have this dilemma and want to be as informed as I can.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Long Live the Gorn!
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    I think the best thing for you is to figure out how to get out and ride at least one one of the bikes even if you have to drive a couple hours.

    FWIW... I am a 429c owner couldn't be happier...definitely all around ... not not a compromise all-arounder but a flat out kick ass all-arounder. It has redefined was a strong / stiff all susp bike means to me. I ride "Trail" with A LOT of climbing, everything from my quick 1 hr rides with 1500ft to multi-hour 5K+ then turn around an ride flowy or rock STs.

    So as I say...429c?
    Ruthlessly Efficient!
    Incredibly Fast!
    Ridiculously Fun!

    Oh BTW Pivots customer service is bar none, I had small self inflicted issue, the rep personally contacted me and and worked directly with FOX to fix my issue.
    Last edited by bvader; 03-01-2014 at 10:53 AM.

  3. #3
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    I have demoed both, the sb95 rails corners like no other bike I have ridden - its an incredible feeling and the suspension is very plush. That said the 429c would be my choice due to outstanding peddling efficiency and performance of the dw link along with its solid handling traits.

  4. #4
    EXW
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    Thanks for the replies.

    I've demo'd both bikes but on different trails. I liked them both and that is what makes this so tough. In looking at what is different I would say the Pivot felt a little more compact and was better going up. The Yeti was super stable and better going down.

    There are a lot of things that can affect the impressions from single demo rides. So, any thoughts on how the Yeti is going up? Also any thoughts on the Pivot going down (ever wish for more travel in the rear)?

    Thanks

  5. #5
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    Not a trick question.... If you tuned everyone out...Which one do *you* *want*...for whatever reason.. No matter how personal or minor... Go with that one...and you will be happy

  6. #6
    EXW
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    Quote Originally Posted by bvader View Post
    Not a trick question.... If you tuned everyone out...Which one do *you* *want*...for whatever reason.. No matter how personal or minor... Go with that one...and you will be happy
    That is where I am stuck. I have been going back and forth trying to find something that edges one above the other (for my needs). In the end, I will need to make the call but still looking for any additional insights or experience.

  7. #7
    GMM
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    Having demo'd the SB95, I'd guess is slower through the single track than the Pivot, which I haven't demo'd. It was the only trait that I thought was a negative for the SB95; it's a bit of a slow turner, even for a 29er. Hard to find much else wrong with that bike. I did have a blast riding it.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by etanc View Post
    I have demoed both, the sb95 rails corners like no other bike I have ridden - its an incredible feeling and the suspension is very plush. That said the 429c would be my choice due to outstanding peddling efficiency and performance of the dw link along with its solid handling traits.
    Yeah same here, I was lucky enough to try both of those amazing bikes and even though they are both incredible and you really can't go wrong with either I personally prefer the 429c.
    Last edited by Max24; 03-07-2015 at 10:02 PM.

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    The fact the Yeti is a 5" travel would do it for me. It gives you the option of going 140mm in the front.

    I have an Aluminum SB95. The bike has never been the failing factor on a climb. I either run out of gas, or my tire slips. There is a hill where I ride called the F U hill or the wall. Until I got the Yeti, I never thought I could make it up that hill.
    The ride is just so plush. I have a 140mm Pike on there. It outperforms the Fox 34 and RS Rev I had on before. And it matches the rear suspension perfectly.

    It does have somewhat slower steering, but that has more to do with the 100mm stem I have on there. If I put a shorter stem on, it quickens the steering quite a bit.

    Can't speak for the Pivot.

  10. #10
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    I live close to the Pivot HQ and have a fair amount of time on the 429c due to the frequent demo access and it's a frame I am considering. Never felt like the bike had descending limitations due to the 100mm travel due to the performance of the dw link and valving profile. This frame is also very solid, no flex detected.

    If you are more of an all mountain rider, a longer travel frame would be an advantage. We ride mostly xc/trail so my bias is for pedaling efficiency (without harshness) and the sb95c was not even close to an equivalent efficiency but it excels elsewhere.

  11. #11
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    I've got the SB95a. Setup with 140mm Pike and a 50mm stem. It's a ton of fun.
    I think it climbs great.
    I've ridden the 429 alloy too a few different times. I definitely rides as if it feels lighter than the Yeti. I think that's the DWLink.
    LIke someone said, I prefer the Yeti's 5 inches of rear travel and the ability to run the 140 Pike. That's worth it right there for me.
    But, if you want something lighter and have your bikes setup with 'fast' tires, etc., maybe the Pivot is a better choice.
    If you like a bigger, more capable bike, and use bigger, beefier tires and overall setup, go with the Yeti.

  12. #12
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    I have the 429c. Never ridden the Yeti, hear nothing but great reports. The Pivot is my do everything bike. Use it for endurance events, taken it to Moab (SLickrock baby!) and it receives several trail rides/week in the high desert of Arizona. I have only my personal experience and bias to add to the discussion.
    Set up with 120 up front, the Pivot is great, everywhere. Incredibly stiff yet compliant (DW link), it is a mountain goat of a climber. Rolling up and over obstacles during climbs has become rather fun. Was always a point of contention for me. Pointing it downhill, I have never wanted for more suspension. Put a dropper post on, lower that thing and take the steepest trails you can find. Will take any jump I have the stones to attempt. Rails corners like no other bike I have had the pleasure to ride. Am I a little biased, yes. I love riding the Pivot.
    About me. Riding for 13 years. Previous steeds; Niner Rip 9, Niner Sir 9 w gears, Stumpy FSR 29er and a few rigid 29er SSs (still have a couple).
    I think either would be a kick butt trail bike. Trying to decide between the two, nice problem to have.

  13. #13
    EXW
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    Thanks everyone for sharing your experiences. After a couple more trips to bike stores and some quick test rides, I've decided on the Yeti. It just seems to better fit what I'm looking for in a bike.

    It came down to the Yeti feeling a bit more stable and predictable, and not really getting any pedal bob out of either bike (even when standing). I'm still incredibly impressed with the Pivot, but had to go with the bike that suited me better.

  14. #14
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    Late to the thread, but FWIW, I think you made the right call, based on this single statement in your original post: "The trails around me are steep and rocky."

    Unless you have a significant endurance racing focus, I think you're going to have more fun on the Yeti.

    If it's not too late, a fork that switches between 120 and 140 would amp up the fun factor even more (Talas, etc.).
    Whining is not a strategy.

  15. #15
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    That's what its all about - enjoy your new ride!

  16. #16
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    You made the right choice in my opinion, the Yeti is a fantastic bike and it the current cream of the crop in terms of 29ers, although I am biased.

    Seriously though the SB95c surprises me each time I ride it, it's a game changer.

  17. #17
    EXW
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    Thanks all. Now that I've made the decision I can't wait to get the bike and get on the trails. It is a long way from the GT Ricochet I started on 20 years ago.

  18. #18
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    Iím late to show as well but sometimes a little affirmation after the fact is helpful. I ended up in an almost identical shoot-out as you did between the 429 carbon and SB95 carbon. In my top three I also included the Ripley, which was brilliant, but just a little too flexy for my Clydesdale status. I rode all the bikes on the exact same trails, each over a period of a couple days. The Pivot and Yeti are both magnificent steeds and a rider cannot go wrong with either. I ended up, like you did, choosing the Yeti because of its slightly more trail orientation and its riding position was more comfortable and bit more fun for the slightly more wheels on the ground mellow riding style that I rock.

    The Pivot was lighter and I felt faster on it. It was at least a stiff as the Yeti. It was the most efficient climbing. To answer one or your questions directly, I used up all the Pivots rear travel and about 4 inches on the front. I might actually prefer a 100mm fork on the Pivotómaking it even more cross-county orientedófun and fast but not as good for my no longer young body on longer rides. Or maybe, for the way I ride, a 529 (one day) with the same travel front and back?

    So in the end, like you, I went with a Yeti SB95 carbon. Same stupid money but one hell of a ride. A little less efficient up the hill but a little more tenacious too with its active rear-end. Just amazing on the downhill when it gets bumpy. More than any other bike I rode it feels like the front and back suspensions work together. Part of this may be the beefier 34 fork but that fork is standard on the Yeti.

    The Yeti just gave me the most confidence of any of the bikes I rode and that makes it more fun and comfortable to go faster. Enjoy your new bike. Happy riding.

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