We demonstrate the shortest transistor channel length (17 nm) fabricated on a vapor-liquid-solid (VLS) grown silicon nanowire (NW) by a controlled reaction with Ni leads on an in situ transmission electron microscope (TEM) heating stage at a moderate temperature of 400 °C. NiSi 2 is the leading phase, and the silicide-silicon interface is an atomically sharp type-A interface. At such channel lengths, high maximum on-currents of 890 (μA/μm) and a maximum transconductance of 430 (μS/μm) were obtained, which pushes forward the performance of bottom-up Si NW Schottky barrier field-effect transistors (SB-FETs). Through accurate control over the silicidation reaction, we provide a systematic study of channel length dependent carrier transport in a large number of SB-FETs with channel lengths in the range of 17 nm to 3.6 μm. Our device results corroborate with our transport simulations and reveal a characteristic type of short channel effects in SB-FETs, both in on- and off-state, which is different from that in conventional MOSFETs, and that limits transport parameter extraction from SB-FETs using conventional field-effect transconductance measurements.