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Canyon Dude CF 7 Review

A reasonably priced carbon fiber fat bike that's lightweight and efficient
canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review
Credit: Jeremy Benson
Best Buy Award
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Price:  $2,299 List
Manufacturer:   Canyon
By Jeremy Benson ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  Dec 23, 2022
76
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 8
  • Downhill Performance - 30% 7.0
  • Uphill Performance - 30% 9.0
  • Versatility - 25% 7.0
  • Build - 15% 7.0

Our Verdict

The Canyon Dude CF 7 is a quality, carbon-framed fat bike offered at a reasonable price. The carbon frame is not only sleek-looking, but it's lightweight, stiff, and responsive. This bike has snappy handling and a zippy, and efficient feel when pedaling. Like most fat bikes, the geometry is somewhat conservative, though Canyon gave it a more modern reach and slightly longer wheelbase that help to enhance overall stability. The build is budget-oriented but perfectly functional, and it gets the job done out on the trail. While it doesn't strike us as the most versatile bike, we do feel it is a great option for general fat biking use that won't completely break the bank.
REASONS TO BUY
Affordable for carbon frame
Well-rounded performance
Reasonable weight
REASONS TO AVOID
SRAM SX shifter ergonomics
Limited frame and fork mounts

Compare to Similar Products

 
canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review
This Product
Canyon Dude CF 7
Awards Best Buy Award Editors' Choice Award Top Pick Award Top Pick Award Best Buy Award 
Price $2,299 List$2,499 List$2,350 List$2,850 List$2,000 List
Overall Score Sort Icon
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Pros Affordable for carbon frame, well-rounded performance, reasonable weightReasonable price for carbon, tons of frame and fork mounts, highly versatileDropper post, nice build, great all-around performanceSuspension fork, dropper post, well-rounded performanceAffordable, reasonable weight, super wide tires, floatation and traction
Cons SRAM SX shifter ergonomics, limited frame and fork mountsSX shifter ergonomics, non-lock-on gripsModerately heavyModerately expensive, heavy, a bit clumsy in tight spacesBasic, uncomfortable saddle
Bottom Line A reasonably priced carbon fiber fat bike that's lightweight and efficientA very well-rounded and highly versatile fat bike for snow and adventure riding at a reasonable priceNot only is it good looking but it's a capable and well-rounded fat bikeA versatile fat bike that performs well in all situations and shreds downhill better than mostThe Trek Farley 5 is relatively basic, but it is still a plenty capable and reasonably priced fat bike
Rating Categories Canyon Dude CF 7 Fezzari Kings Peak... Giant Yukon 1 Trek Farley 7 Trek Farley 5
Downhill Performance (30%)
7.0
8.0
8.0
9.0
7.0
Uphill Performance (30%)
9.0
8.0
8.0
7.0
7.0
Versatility (25%)
7.0
9.0
8.0
8.0
7.0
Build (15%)
7.0
7.0
8.0
8.0
7.0
Specs Canyon Dude CF 7 Fezzari Kings Peak... Giant Yukon 1 Trek Farley 7 Trek Farley 5
Wheelsize 27.5" 27.5" 27.5" 27.5" 27.5"
Weight w/o pedals 30 lbs 5 oz 31 lbs 32 lbs 13 oz 36 lbs 11 oz 31 lbs 11 oz
Frame Material Canyon Dude CF (carbon fiber) Carbon V3 ALUXX SL-Grade Aluminum Alpha Platinum Aluminum Alpha Platinum Aluminum
Frame Size Large Large Large Large Large
Available Sizes S-L S-XL S-XL S-XL S-XL
Fork Canyon Rude CF Kings Peak Carbon V3 Rigid Composite with low-rider rack mounts Manitou Mastodon 34 Comp Bontrager Haru, OCLV carbon lowers
Wheelset SUNringle Mulefut SL 80 SUNringle Mulefut SL 80 rims with Bear Pawls Alloy hubs Alloy rims, 90mm, with Giant hubs SUNRingle Mulefut SL 80 rims with Bontrager hubs SUNringle Mulefut SL 80 rims with Bontrager hubs
Front Tire Maxxis Minion FBF 3.8" Terrene Cake Eater 4.5" Maxxis Colossus 4.5" Bontrager Gnarwhal Team Issue 4.5" Bontrager Gnarwhal Team Issue 4.5"
Rear Tire Maxxis Minion FBR 3.8" Terrene Cake Eater 4.5" Maxxis Colossus 4.5" Bontrager Gnarwhal Team Issue 4.5" Bontrager Gnarwhal Team Issue 4.5"
Shifters SRAM SX Eagle SRAM SX Eagle SRAM NX Eagle SRAM SX Eagle Shimano Deore 10-speed
Rear Derailleur SRAM SX Eagle SRAM SX Eagle SRAM NX Eagle SRAM NX Eagle Shimano Deore 10-speed
Cranks Truvativ Stylo 6K DUB SRAM X1 1000 Eagle DUB SRAM NX Eagle DUB FAT 5 SRAM X1 1000 Eagle DUB Race Face Ride
Chainring 30T 30T 30T 30T 28T
Bottom Bracket SRAM Pressfit DUB SRAM DUB BSA 100 SRAM DUB Pressfit SRAM DUB Pressfit Race Face 121mm, Pressfit
Cassette SRAM PG-1210 11-50T SRAM PG-1210 11-50T SRAM NX Eagle 11-50T SRAM PG-1210 11-50T Shimano HG500 11-42T
Saddle Selle Italia X3 Selle Italia Model X Superflow Giant Contact (neutral) Bontrager Arvada 138mm Bontrager Arvada 138mm
Seatpost Iridium Alloy Fezzari Racing Design XrT Alloy Giant Contact Switch dropper Tranz-X JD-YSP18, 130mm Bontrager Alloy
Handlebar Iridium Flatbar Fezzari Racing Design Alloy Flat Bar, 780mm Giant Connect Trail, 780mm Bontrager Alloy, 750mm Bontrager Alloy
Stem Iridium Alloy Fezzari Alloy Giant Contact Bontrager Elite, 80mm Bontrager Elite
Brakes Shimano MT410 Clarks M2 Hydraulic Disc SRAM Level T SRAM Level T SRAM Level
Head Tube Angle 69-degrees 67-degrees 68.5-degrees 69-degrees 69-degrees
Reach (size Large) 465mm 470mm 427mm 441mm 441mm
Wheelbase (size Large) 1175mm 1208mm 1171mm 1158mm 1158mm
Chainstay Length 439mm 450mm 445-460mm (adjustable) 455mm 455mm
Seat Tube Angle (effective) 73-degrees 75-degrees 73-degrees 73-degrees 73-degrees
Warranty Six Years Lifetime Lifetime Lifetime Lifetime

Our Analysis and Test Results

Canyon is a consumer-direct brand that produces a very wide range of bicycles for all types of cycling. The Dude is their one fat bike model, and the CF 7 build is the only version of it sold currently in the US market (other builds are available in other markets). This bike has a lightweight carbon frame and a budget-friendly component specification that helps to keep the price reasonable. It performs well when the rubber meets the snow, dirt, etc, and it feels light, fast, and efficient but doesn't stand out much from the crowd.

Performance Comparison


canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review - the dude is a quality fat bike with a relatively well-rounded...
The Dude is a quality fat bike with a relatively well-rounded performance at a reasonable price.
Credit: Jeremy Benson


Downhill Performance


The majority of fat bikes are not made for shredding the gnar, instead, they have designs that reflect the slower speeds and moderate terrain that they are likely to be ridden. The Dude CF 7 performs well enough on the descents for a typical fat bike. It has a fairly standard fat bike geometry that lends itself well to relatively nimble handling and good control in fat bike conditions and at moderate speeds. The components all work just fine and don't detract from its performance in any way.

canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review - fat bikes aren't exactly playful, but the dude feels snappy and...
Fat bikes aren't exactly playful, but the Dude feels snappy and responsive.
Credit: Jeremy Benson

Like most fat bikes, the Canyon Dude has a somewhat conservative geometry that suits its intentions relatively well. It shares the same 69-degree head tube angle with the majority of the other models we tested, which works well enough for most of the downhill situations most people are likely to encounter on a fat bike. Where the Dude breaks the model a little in terms of geometry is its 465mm reach and 1,175mm wheelbase (size large) measurements. While not exactly long by today's standards, this bike is a little bit longer than most other bikes in this category. This provides a roomier cockpit while descending and should feel a little more natural to mountain bikers while also providing a little more stability at speed. When things get really steep, it doesn't feel quite as composed as bikes with slacker head angles, but that isn't really the realm of fat bikes anyway. Instead, it provides a nice balance of agility and stability that works well in most situations on moderate descents.

canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review - the dude abides and works well when descending typical fat bike...
The Dude abides and works well when descending typical fat bike terrain.
Credit: Jeremy Benson

The parts attached to the Dude get the job done without impressing. The 2-piston Shimano MT410 hydraulic disc brakes actually work great for the moderate speeds and terrain that this bike is made for. We don't love the ergonomics of the brake levers, but admittedly, they work just fine. The cockpit setup works well enough and provides for sharp handling, although we'd prefer a handlebar with a little more rise to increase rider comfort and take a little weight off the hands. The Maxxis Minion FBR and FBF tires work well in most situations and are relatively versatile in their 3.8-inch width. That said, they don't provide as much floatation as wider options, and they don't have as much cornering traction or braking bike as other tires. A tradeoff for their faster rolling speed.

canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review - the dude is a swift and efficient climber with a relatively light...
The Dude is a swift and efficient climber with a relatively light weight and fast rolling tires.
Credit: Jeremy Benson

Uphill Performance


Riding in the flats or uphill is where the Canyon Dude impressed us the most. This bike is fairly lightweight and the carbon frame is stiff and efficient when laying down the power. The geometry lends itself to responsive handling and a relatively comfortable seated pedaling position whether you're grinding out a groomed track or scrambling up packed snow singletrack.

The Dude CF 7 has geometry numbers like a 69-degree head tube angle and a 73-degree seat tube angle that are fairly common among fat bikes. While we are accustomed to seeing slacker head tubes and steeper seat tubes on modern mountain bikes, these measurements work well for the intended purpose of riding a fat bike. The steeper head angle helps to keep the handling feeling sharp when negotiating sharp turns or tight, technical sections on the climbs. The 73-degree effective seat tube doesn't prop you up as high as some steeper seat angles, but it works fine for the moderate terrain and steepness you encounter on fat bike rides. The rider is lined up just a hair behind the bottom bracket, and power transfer feels quite direct and efficient thanks to the stiff carbon frame. The 465mm reach on our size large test bike provides a roomy cockpit, but we also noticed that it feels a tad longer than that measurement suggests with the slacker seat tube angle and flat handlebar. This resulted in a slightly racier/aggressive body position for our long-legged six-foot-tall tester, with noticeably more weight on the hands. Swapping to a handlebar with a little more rise would be a quick and easy remedy that would enhance our overall comfort while riding the Dude.

canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review - the dude is certainly no slouch in the climbing or efficiency...
The Dude is certainly no slouch in the climbing or efficiency department.
Credit: Jeremy Benson

While it may not exactly turn heads, the budget-friendly component specification works well on the uphills. Other than our gripes about not being able to position the shifter perfectly, the SRAM SX 12-speed drivetrain worked well for us during testing and the range offered by the 30-tooth chainring and 11-50-tooth 12-speed cassette is plenty for just about any situation you'll encounter on a ride. The Maxxis Minion FBR/FBF tire combo in a 3.8-inch width is a versatile choice that works relatively well in a huge range of conditions, from groomed and packed snow to sand and even dirt. They roll fairly quickly and efficiently given their size and provide good, but not amazing, pedaling traction.

canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review - the adjustable dropouts allow you to change wheel sizes if you choose.
The adjustable dropouts allow you to change wheel sizes if you choose.
Credit: Jeremy Benson

Versatility


The Dude CF 7 is a bit of a mixed bag when it comes to versatility. It allows for changes to wheel size with adjustable dropouts, and the stock tires strike a good balance between snow and soft conditions riding and are more suitable for use on dirt than wider options. That said, it has very limited mounts and bosses for water bottles and accessories on the frame and fork, so anyone looking to use this bike as a bike packing or adventure riding rig is limited to bags that strap or clamp onto the frame or handlebar.

One thing the Dude has going for it is that it is relatively lightweight and fast-rolling, making it a solid option for riding on groomed trails, packed singletracks, and possibly even for some fat biking racing. Ditching the tubes in the tires and setting them up tubeless could also shave a significant amount of weight. The stock 3.8-inch wide tires work well enough on firm snow and sand, and they aren't nearly as draggy or sluggish when you ride on dirt as most wider options. There is plenty of space to run wider tires as well. The Dude frame is also compatible with suspension forks like the Manitou Mastadon and has a cable port for internally routed dropper posts should you desire to set it up with either of those components.

canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review - what you see is what you get. there is exactly one set of bottle...
What you see is what you get. There is exactly one set of bottle bosses on the downtube of the Dude. If you want to pack anything on this bike you'll need bags that strap or clamp on.
Credit: Jeremy Benson

The Dude loses a little ground to the competition in the versatility department due to its lack of bottle bosses and frame mounts. This bike has a total of one set of water bottle bosses on the down tube of the frame, and that is it. There are no other mount points anywhere on the frame or fork for mounting bolt-on bags or other accessories for carrying gear. We feel this is somewhat limiting from a bike packing and adventure riding standpoint compared to other models that prioritize this in their design. That said, you can still strap bags to the handlebar and within the front triangle or clamp them to the seatpost should you desire to carry gear on this bike.

canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review - can't say the dude isn't a good-looking bike. the carbon frame has...
Can't say the Dude isn't a good-looking bike. The carbon frame has mostly internal cable routing and adjustable rear dropouts so you can change wheel and tire sizes if you choose.
Credit: Jeremy Benson

Build


The Dude CF 7 is built around Canyon's Dude carbon fiber frame that is paired with a Canyon Rude carbon fiber fork. The frame has very clean lines and a refined look with internal cable routing for the shifter cable and a dropper (if you choose to put one on), with both brake lines routed outside the frame for a less polished look but much easier serviceability. The Dude has adjustable rear dropouts to allow for changes to wheel and tire size should you ever wish to swap them out, and they claim it can be used with 26 x 4.8-inch wheels/tires, or 29 x 3.0-inch wheels/tires, in addition to the 27.5-inch wheel setup that comes stock. It has standard fat bike axle spacing of 15 x 150mm in the front and 12 x 197mm in the rear. It has a pressfit bottom bracket, a very thin chainstay protector, and one set of water bottle bosses on the downtube of the frame. The bike comes with 3.8-inch wide tires, but there is ample clearance to run wider tires if you prefer. There is also a knock-block type feature attached to the frame/headset that limits how far the handlebar and fork can twist. It seems unnecessary with the carbon fork attached, but we imagine it is useful to prevent frame damage if a suspension fork is used.

The SRAM SX drivetrain is nothing to write home about, but it works...
The SRAM SX drivetrain is nothing to write home about, but it works just fine.
The Shimano brakes work quite well even if the ergonomics of the...
The Shimano brakes work quite well even if the ergonomics of the levers isn't great.
The SRAM SX Eagle drivetrain offers plenty of range for all situations and the 2-piston Shimano brakes are a good fit for fat bike speeds and terrain.

The CF 7 build of the Dude is budget-oriented, and that is most apparent in the drivetrain specification. It comes with a full SRAM SX Eagle drivetrain, and while it is far from our favorite, it works well enough for general fat biking. It comes with a 30-tooth chainring paired with the 12-speed cassette with cogs ranging from 11-50 teeth, providing a massive gear range. We don't love the weight of the SX cassette, and the shifter is hard to set up perfectly given that it doesn't mate with any brakes. We find it's either too close to or too far from the thumb when the brake lever is in the ideal position. Minor gripes, but gripes nonetheless. Braking duties are given to a set of 2-piston Shimano MT410 hydraulic disc brakes with 180/160mm rotors front/rear. We don't love the ergonomics of the brake levers, but there's no denying that these brakes are plenty powerful for this bike.

The 3.8-inch wide Maxxis Minion FBR rear tire.
The 3.8-inch wide Maxxis Minion FBR rear tire.
The 3.8-inch wide Maxxis Minion FBF front tire.
The 3.8-inch wide Maxxis Minion FBF front tire.
The Maxxis Minion FBR and FBF combo is relatively common and they work well enough while remaining relatively fast rolling.

The Dude rolls on 27.5-inch diameter Sun Ringle Mulefut 80 SL wheels. These are a very common stock wheel choice for fat bikes, and they work well with a massive inner rim width of 74.4mm that mates well with super wide fat bike tires. Speaking of tires, Canyon chose a set of Maxxis Minion FBF and FBR tires in a 3.8-inch width for the Dude. These tires are impressively versatile and work quite well on packed snow, sand, and even dirt, with enough tread to provide good cornering, braking, and pedaling traction while remaining relatively fast rolling. The tradeoff with the skinnier 3.8-inch width is that they don't provide as much floatation as wider tires, and the tread design isn't quite as aggressive as some other options. Should you choose to swap them out for something different, it should be noted that fat bike tires can be pretty expensive, but they typically don't wear out nearly as quickly as regular mountain bike tires (though that depends on the surfaces you ride them on).

The Dude is equipped with cockpit components made mostly by their...
The Dude is equipped with cockpit components made mostly by their house-brand, Iridium.
The Selle Italia X3 saddle has an agreeable shape and width that we...
The Selle Italia X3 saddle has an agreeable shape and width that we think should work for most people.
The cockpit setup is fairly comfortable, including the Selle Italia saddle.

Canyon makes a full range of house-branded components under the Iridium name, and the cockpit consists almost entirely of them. This includes an alloy stem that clamps an alloy handlebar with 5mm of rise and some lock-on grips. While there's nothing wrong with any of these components, we would have preferred a handlebar with a touch more rise to reduce the longer feel of this bike's reach. At the back of the bike, a rigid alloy seatpost supports a Selle Italia X3 saddle that is relatively comfortable. The frame does feature an internal routing port for a dropper seatpost cable should you wish to install one.

Geometry


The Canyon Dude CF 7 has a geometry that is an interesting blend of some conservative and some progressive numbers. Like many other models we've tested, it has a fairly conservative 69-degree head tube angle and a 73-degree effective seat tube angle. Where the Dude breaks the mold somewhat is in its reach and wheelbase measurements. Our size large test bike has a moderate length 465mm reach that is more in line with regular trail bikes, and a 1,175mm wheelbase that's about 20mm longer than most. The chainstays measure 439mm, although they are adjustable by approximately 25mm to accommodate different wheel sizes, and that shorter length helps to keep the bike feeling a little more lively. The Dude comes in 3 sizes, S, M, and L. Our large test bike tipped the scales at fairly svelte 30 pounds and 5 ounces with tubes and without pedals.

canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review - the dude gets the job done and looks good doing it, and the price is...
The Dude gets the job done and looks good doing it, and the price is right too.
Credit: Jeremy Benson

Should You Buy the Canyon Dude CF 7?


If you're looking for a fat bike for general day-to-day fat biking, the Dude CF 7 is a great option to consider. It's good for ripping around on snow, sand, or even dirt singletracks, and it's light and efficient enough to try your hand at fat bike racing if that's your thing. The functional component spec isn't flashy, but it works well enough while keeping the price of this carbon-framed beauty quite reasonable.

What Other Fat Bikes Should You Consider?


The Fezzari Kings Peak took us by surprise and turned out to be the top-rated fat bike in this round of testing. It comes with similar components to the Dude, but its longer and slacker geometry increase confidence on the descents, and the wealth of bottle and accessory mounts make it better prepared for bike packing and adventure riding. It's also very competitively priced for a bike with a carbon fiber frame. If you're interested in a little more comfort, the Trek Farley 7 is an interesting option to consider. This aluminum-framed bike comes with a suspension fork and a dropper seatpost that makes it much more forgiving on the descents and on rough or chunky trails.

canyon dude cf 7 fat bike review - while it wouldn't be our first choice for anyone seeking a bike...
While it wouldn't be our first choice for anyone seeking a bike packing or adventure riding rig, the Dude is an excellent, reasonably priced model for general-purpose fat biking.
Credit: Jeremy Benson

Jeremy Benson
 
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