Canfield Yelli Screamy Final Review

by FatBob on May 16, 2011

The Canfield Brothers Yelli Screamy is a unique hardtail in today’s industry cookie cutter hardtail segment. The 29eronline testers have been pleading to get their hands on a 29er hardtail for months now. The Yelli Screamy did not disappoint.

We need to make a couple of notes on geometry. The Yelli Screamy is Canfield Brothers’ take on an All Mountain hardtail. Our take on “All Mountain Bikes” needs to be defined. All Mountain, to us, means the bike is able to climb, but is really focused on technical riding ability, searching out new lines, and is designed with better descending manners than climbing. For us, All Mountain is based on having fun, not overall speed.

With a hardtail, efficiency is kind of redundant. It pedals “like a hardtail”, right? It, evidently, is not that simple. Charlie Storm, our resident XC professional makes some interesting comments, if you listen to his video clip in our tester video. Not all hardtails are ideal for efficiency and they are definitely noticeably different handlers. The Canfield is all about fun. I am sure you could race it but it is really about playing in the woods not so much about all business, efficiency.

The Yelli Screamy handles quickly. It is the tester’s unanimous opinion that the Yelli Screamy gets rid of the negative traits that many people associate with 29ers compared to 26ers. The Yelli Screamy is excellent in slow speed, technical terrain, and hopping moves. It is very easy to lift the front end of this bike. My first experience getting the bike on it’s rear wheel had me grabbing a handful of rear brake to prevent my butt from meeting the trail. It is the easiest 29er to get the front wheel airborne 29eronline’s crew has tested to date.

The test crew, myself included, settled in on the fork at 120 mm travel. At this setting, the bike seems to climb with not much incidence of a light front end, as well as offering our preferred bottom bracket height and playful handling. No problems on switchbacks – either climbing or descending; the Yelli Screamy’s wheel base and balance where great.

Speaking of climbing, this is probably the most asked question we get as regards the Yelli Screamy. It probably arises due to the bike’s short chain stays combined with it’s slack head angle. On a 26 inch wheel bike, this combination is usually a handful in climbing situations. On a 29er it is not as much of an issue. Unless you love a completely glued down front end, the Yelli Screamy climbs well. I would say its strength is on technical climbs littered with rocks and step ups or climbs that have a lot of switchbacks.

I am not sure why, but for some reason people thought the Yelli Screamy got up to speed better then other 29ers we have ridden. Add it’s ability to respond quickly, and the Yelly Screamy scales step-ups and obstacles with authority.

While descending at high speed, the rear end skips and skitters like all other hard tails. However, the short wheel base never exaggerated this, and is easy to keep under you and in control. This ease of control combined with the slack head angle make it very manageable at speed. While I would not say high speed descents are its strength, there is nothing holding the Yelli Screamy back in this area. Confidence is quickly gained, probably due to it’s responsiveness to rider input. I never felt out of control. At some point, most other hardtail 29ers send me off into the woods while I am learning their handling limits. The Canfield, happily, kept me on the trail and out of the brush.

Slow speed tech is where the Yelli Screamy really shines. It is well balanced and responds quickly to any pedaling or weight changes. This responsiveness surpasses any other 29er I have ridden to date. If you want to challenge your skills at technical riding, or rock crawling, the Yelli Screamy is your bike.

Who should own the Yelly Screamy? If you want the reliability of a hardtail, and your focus is on playing in the woods not on breaking speed records or shattering ride times at your local loop, the Canfield Yelli Screamy will work well for you. This is a great bike for exploring new trails and for pushing your riding skills to the next level. The Yelli Screamy did everything we wanted it to do very well and on some things it went above and beyond any expectations we had. This is a great candidate for a one bike rider that doesn’t want to deal with dual suspension.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Glenn Sinsigalli December 10, 2011 at 4:28 pm

This review was one of the factors that caused me to order a Yelli in ORANGE, yes, it is loud. I will build it over the winter, and I can hardly wait to ride it!! I’m thinking a 2X1 drivetrain,80-120 mm adjustable fork, and Stan’s Crest wheels. I can see the stem length/angle being the hardest part to set-up.

FatBob December 10, 2011 at 5:07 pm

Sweet ! Have fun.

Do you mean 2×1 or 2×10 ?

It looks like you are trying to build it light. If you are over 180 LBS be careful with that wheel set. We rode a set for a couple of months and had problems. I will put up a review soon. They are certainly light and reasonably priced but they seem a little bit out of place for this particular frame and how the Canfield was meant to be ridden.

Please let us know when you have it built up and if you have any questions please post them up here in the comments section.

Glenn Sinsigalli February 25, 2012 at 6:44 am

Here’s a delayed response! Your review caused me to choose the Arch EX wheelset, 200 grams for more durability and width seemed a good trade off. And I did mean a 2X1 drive train,a “dinglespeed” I’m told. I may add rear gears later, waiting for the XTR Shadow Plus tech to move down a reasonable price point.
When I get it finished, I’ll send some photos.
Thanks.

Glenn Sinsigalli July 19, 2012 at 5:21 pm

Hey guys,
Plans change, so here is what I ended up with: Stan’s Crest Wheels, Craigslist for $275. I’m at 150 lb’s out of shape, 140 if I’m good. XT front der, Sram 2X 26/39, w/ MRP 2X chain guide. Do not run a front der. without a chain guide!! Chainsuck was a big issue for me. Paul’s Melvin tensoiner, Surly 20t cog, gearclamp things holding it. I rode rigid for a while, fine on the smoother trails, but not so good on the rough stuff. Found a rare, Manitou Tower Pro, 120mm travel, 15mm thru axle and tapered steer tube, $550.
The verdict: this is the best MTB I’ve ever ridden. So much fun, I can kill it on rocky, rooty, steep downhills, and with the 26/20 gearing, I get up about 90% of what I want. Lifting the front wheel is so easy. Sold my C-dale Rush to buy the fork, and no regrets. I will never buy a MTB with XC geo again. Thanks guys, you did influence my decision.

Kirk July 25, 2012 at 6:27 am

The Bionicon V2 chain guide works well on it, too.

CC in MT July 31, 2012 at 11:26 am

I had the N9 for a year and now the YelliScreamy for about a couple weeks with a couple rides on it. First off..finally someone uses geometry for the mountains and flickable funness whilst on a 29er. I always went custom in the past to get the sub 17″ chainstay dimension. This helps with climbing, hopping, trials type moves, jumping and even the DH!!
I thought I’d be working a little extra with the slack front on climbs and I am quite happy to have never noticed any extra work. If anything you can always just let up on the handlebars and float the front end around. This bike climbs a fair bit easier than others I have ridden and well, that translates to more energy for the DH. This bike excels in the uphill catagory of TechnoGnarl.
On the DH, this bike rocks. When giv’n er on the DH, the Yelli has you Screaming for: side plants, huckn’jives, x-ups, railing corners, manuals, classic bunny hops and just flat hauling butt comfortably. I found myself full of chuckles and smiles on a long BC ride this last weekend and well, this week, I am not waiting till the weekend!!
Bike:
YS – M
RS RLT Ti @ 120mm
King hubs
Stans rims
Maxxiss meats
2×10 Shadow Plus

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: