Canyon unveils their new downhill bike, the Sender CF. Having first spotted the rig shrouded in “razzle dazzle” camo under Fabien Barel at Crankworx Rotorua, we finally get an up close look at the new bike. From a padded internal cable system to cut down on noise to integrated frame protection and some MX inspired suspension, Canyon looks to have brought to the table one fine gravity machine.
DRAW THE LINE: CANYON LAUNCHES THE SENDER CF
PRESS RELEASE: “To be the fastest, you have to get creative.” It was with this principle in mind that the Canyon Development Team set out to build an all-new thoroughbred downhill machine. With the performance to turn the racetrack into a blank canvas, their creation, the Sender CF, raises the bar to deliver the ultimate downhill racing platform.
From experimenting with initial prototypes back in 2014 to the final pre-production shakedown at Crankworx New Zealand, the Canyon Development Team including triple DH World Champion, Fabien Barel, left no line unridden in pursuit of creating the most advanced downhill bike ever.
The Sender CF comes stacked with a whole host of innovative performance features. Its geometry is at the forefront of the modern approach and can be adapted to terrain and riding style with Geo Tune. The Triple Phase Suspension system guarantees next-level control while enabling the rider to build momentum at crucial points on track. A rock- solid construction means going big comes naturally, while clever noise-cancelling details across the frame ensure that the Sender CF delivers the stealthiest ride out on the hill.
Three models and a wide range of specs make up the Sender CF range. Canyon now also offers downhillers one of the broadest size ranges on the market, from S to XL, so riders of all dimensions can find the perfect fit.
When developing the Sender’s four-bar suspension system we set out to create the perfect mix of three interlocking characteristics: anti-squat, pedal kickback and anti-rise.
High anti-squat enables efficient acceleration but also results in more pedal kickback. We optimised this to strike a balance that actively increases the rider’s momentum without causing undue leg fatigue over fast repetitive hits. Effective anti-rise means the rear end remains active and in contact with the ground under heavy braking for exceptional traction and control when they’re needed the most.
Inspired by motocross setups, our all-new MX Link enables us to tune the shock leverage ratio independent of anti-squat, pedal kickback or anti-rise. The combination of our MX Link and the latest generation of lightweight, highly adjustable air shocks means we can create the ideal racing suspension setup consisting of three distinct phases.
Triple Phase Suspension
Phase 1: Air shocks require more force for activation than coil shocks. The MX Link transmits high power at the start of the stroke to overcome this. The result is outstanding responsiveness, small bump sensitivity and traction around the sag point, just like riding a coil shock.
Phase 2: Lower power through the mid-stroke provides a stable platform to reduce momentum loss. This enables the rider to actively pump for more track speed and make pinpoint line choices.
Phase 3: We combine the progressiveness of air shocks with a more moderate progression at the end of the stroke to avoid blowing through the entire travel and to give the suspension its bottomless feel. Using volume spacers, the rider can further fine-tune the shock’s progression to their needs.
Extending the wheelbase through the chainstays and front center increases stability and tracking through corners. We also opted to lower the bottom bracket and increase the head tube length for a great stack height. The result is a sensation of being “in” the bike for added confidence when taking on technical tracks at racing speeds.
By creating for distinct sizes, from S to XL, we ensure that for the first time taller riders above 190 cm get the exact same performance as riders below 170 cm. This is one of the widest size ranges available to downhillers.
No two tracks are the same. Geo Tune means the Sender’s geometry can be transformed to match the terrain with six possible head angle and chainstay configurations.
Standard concentric headset cups give a head angle of 63°. For tracks that are either faster and steeper, or flatter and twistier, the standard cups can be swapped out for eccentric headset cups that enable a slacker 62° or steeper 64°.
Chainstay length can also be adjusted to suit both course and riding style. Where tight corners make all the difference, the shorter 430 mm setting provides a rapid responding rear end. If high speed is what it takes, the longer 446 mm setting increases stability. Making the change simply requires inserting the through axle into the chosen dropout and switching the position of the brake mount.
Carbon Front Triangle
Carbon is the leading material for bike construction not simply due to lightness, but through its strength and vibration-damping properties. Modifying the main triangle’s fibre layup and wall thicknesses enabled us to come up with a highly puncture- resistant structure with extra strength guaranteed where the biggest loads are applied. This is the most solid, most fatigue-resistant chassis we have ever produced.
Aluminum Rear Triangle
Crashes happen, and when they do, the rear triangle’s width makes it most likely to hit the ground first and take the biggest impact. Taking its exposure to stone hits and constant drivetrain forces into account, aluminum is the most practical material for the rear end of the bike. Employing high-end 6066 T6 aluminum makes any potential damage easier to assess for a safer setup with no performance loss.
Each of the pivots throughout the Sender’s four-bar suspension setup are fitted with robust and smooth industrial bearings for long-lasting responsiveness. Oversized bearings are then used on the main triangle to deal with the higher lateral forces applied in this area. Thanks to the MX Link’s floating configuration, the linkage and shock performance are unaffected by lateral forces applied when riding. At these points, Polymer bearings by Igus further boost suspension sensitivity and durability.
Quality In Control
At Canyon, our internal testing procedures far exceed any industry standard. Where our products fit into our five-category testing classification is determined by how they perform across a range of examinations in our labs where we test our products to destruction. Using our in-house CT scanner we examine wall thicknesses and the carbon layup with clinical accuracy to ensure all frame’s meet our exacting standards. In our test lab, we repeatedly simulate the most punishing downhill riding scenarios. Throughout development of the entire frame, any weak points were identified using a series of over- load and impact resistance tests before being eradicated from the final design. As a result, the Sender meets our most demanding safety standards and is classed in the top tier: Category 5. The G forces required for its structure to fail far exceed those that the human body is capable of coping with.
Fork Bumper – Not only does the Fork Bumper protect the frame, it provides a clean entry point for the cables into the down tube.
Down Tube Protector – Added protection where the frame is vulnerable to impacts from stones and other debris.
2C Armor – A two-piece component with a hard core to protect the chainstay and a soft upper to reduce excessive chain noise.
Heel Protector – Protects the chainstay on the non-drive side.
Cable Cushion – Cable rattle and movement inside the frame are avoided thanks to the foam Cable Cushion that runs through the down tube.
Sender Fender – The flexible guard protects the shock and linkage from rocks and dirt.
Integrated Seat Clamp – Designing a clamp that visually merges with the frame maintains the seat tube’s line throughout.
Sag monitor – Shock adjustment made simple through integration.
|Sender CF 7.0||Sender CF 8.0||Sender CF 9.0|
|Frame||Canyon Sender CF||Canyon Sender CF||Canyon Sender CF|
|Color||Abyss Blue / Volcano Red||Stealth / Volcano Red||Stealth / Abyss Blue|
|Headset||Acros AZX-227||Acros AZX-227||Acros AZX-227|
|Fork||FOX 40 Float Performance Elite FIT4 LSC||RockShox Boxxer Team||FOX 40 Float Factory FIT4 HSC/LSC|
|Shock||FOX Float X2 Performance Elite||RockShox Vivid Air R2C||FOX Float X2 Factory|
|Rear Derailleur||Shimano Zee Shadow Plus||SRAM X01 DH||SRAM X01 DH|
|Shifter||Shimano Zee||SRAM X01 DH||SRAM X01 DH|
|Brakes||Shimano Zee||SRAM Guide RSC||SRAM Guide RSC|
|Wheels||DT Swiss FR 2020||e*thirteen LG1+||DT Swiss FR 1950|
|Tires||Maxxis Minion DHR II 3C Maxx Grip DW||Maxxis Minion DHR II 3C Maxx Grip DW||Maxxis Minion DHR II 3C Maxx Grip DW|
|Cassette||Shimano Zee||SRAM XG 795 / X01 DH||SRAM XG 795 / X01 DH|
|Cranks||Shimano Zee||e*thirteen LG1+||Race Face Atlas Direct Mount|
|Gear Ratio||36 / 11-25||36 / 10-24||36 / 10-24|
|Chain Guide||e*thirteen LG1+ Taco||e*thirteen LG1+ Taco||e*thirteen LG1+ Taco|
|Bottom Bracket||Shimano Zee||e*thirteen||Race Face|
|Stem||Renthal Integra 45/50 mm||Renthal Integra 45/50 mm||Renthal Integra 45/50 mm|
|Handlebar||Renthal FatBar 780 mm||Renthal FatBar 780 mm||Renthal FatBar 780 mm|
|Grips||DHX Grips||DHX Grips||DHX Grips|
|Saddle||SDG I Fly||SDG I Fly||SDG I Fly|
|Seat Clamp||Canyon Sender Integrated||Canyon Sender Integrated||Canyon Sender Integrated|
|Seatpost||SDG Micro I Beam||SDG Micro I Beam||SDG Micro I Beam|
|Weight (KG / LBS)||17.4 / 38.36||16.5 / 36.38||16.2 / 35.71|