An excellent 160mm fork for the money — stiff, reasonably light and you couldn’t set it up badly if you tried.
The Yari is basically a more affordable version of the Lyrik and, as such, uses a Motion Control IS damper rather than the flagship Charger unit. The rest of the fork is identical, including the chassis, spring assembly and even the tokens.
Above: RockShox Yari first look
To increase stiffness, the 35mm stanchions (upper tubes) in the Yari have thicker walls than those in a Pike, and the Yari also has a deeper crown.
It also features RockShox’s new Torque Cap dropouts, which are designed to work with the 31mm oversized end caps on most SRAM hubs. These also work with standard-sized end caps, but we found the deeper recess does mean you have to fiddle about getting the Maxle aligned.
To improve small-bump sensitivity, the Yari uses RockShox’s Solo Air spring, but it has a much stronger negative spring than the Pike too. The upshot of this is you can run the fork hard, for increased support, but still have loads of grip and compliance.
On the damper side there’s a rebound adjuster and a simple twist-style compression lockout.
With these basic damping adjustments, sag gradients on the stanchions and a pressure chart on the back of the left leg, setting up the Yari is an absolute doddle — you simply set the sag and start ripping. We didn’t need to add any tokens because the amount of progression felt spot-on, and even dialling in the rebound was easy, in fact it was almost impossible to get a bad set-up.
The Yari is one of the stiffest forks in the lower half of the draw. Indeed, its burly, bombproof chassis really helped when picking through gnarly rock gardens or stuffing the bike into banked turns.
While rigidity was on a par with its high-end stablemate, as you might expect, the Motion Control damper isn’t as sophisticated as the Lyrik — when we were slamming it down the trails at BikePark Wales there was a bit of harshness through the bars.
The Yari also didn’t feel as stable, especially in slippery conditions, when you’re riding on the edge of traction. But then we are talking fine margins, because this is an excellent 160mm fork for the money — stiff, reasonably light and you couldn’t set it up badly if you tried. The fact that you can buy it online for less than £400 makes it even better.