Cane Creek has redesigned its DB Air IL and DB Coil IL Shocks to improve compatibility with a wider range of trail bikes. Thicker damper tubes combined with slimmer valve bodies are said to increase overall strength while allowing for more clearance on tightly-packaged frames such as those from Specialized, Orbea and Salsa. Despite their more svelte profile, the shocks still boast Cane Creek’s patented twin-tube damping technology offering an impressively wide range of externally-accessible damping adjustment, as well as a climb switch.
Here’s all you need to know about Cane Creek’s latest rear shocks.
New Cane Creek DB Air & Coil IL Shocks
The new Cane Creek DB Air IL and DB Coil IL Shocks are aimed squarely at the trail bike category; bikes running around 120-150mm of rear wheel travel. They are positioned in the market as high-performance Inline shocks that are able to offer more consistent damping performance than their competitors thanks to the twin-tube damper architecture – not only does that allow for 4-way independent adjustment of the damping characteristics, it also houses a larger volume of oil that helps to dissipate heat, allowing the shock to perform more consistently over long descents.
Cane Creek’s burlier piggy-back shock, the DB Kitsuma, would be the one to go for if 1. it was for a longer travel bike and/or 2. you needed even more consistent damping performance for extra long descents, such as those you’d find in the Alps and the like. Its architecture houses an even greater volume of oil, and is better suited to riding conditions where heat management is a top priority.
The major update for the Cane Creek DB Air IL and DB Coil IL Shocks released today is the much narrower valve body; on the DB Air IL, that is now just 50.5mm wide versus the 68mm valve body of the previous generation. The air can gets narrower, too – now 51mm as compared to the predecessor’s 57mm. The air can also gets longer, though, so actual air volume remains relatively unchanged. The narrower piston does mean this shock will require more air pressure to achieve the same sag, and the shock’s maximum pressure has increased to 350 PSI in accordance with that (up from 300 PSI).
Bikes that are now compatible with the Cane Creek DB Air IL Shock thanks to its narrower architecture include (but may not be limited to) the Specialized Stumpjumper, the Orbea Occam and the Salsa Horsethief. Due to use of a Clevis link on these bikes, the DB Coil IL is not recommended.
The Cane Creek DB Air IL and DB Coil IL Shocks are available in the following dimensions for Trunnion:
- 165mm x 40mm
- 165mm x 42.5mm
- 165mm x 45mm
- 185mm x 50mm
- 185mm x 52.5mm
- 185mm x 55mm
It is available in the following dimensions for the Standard Eyelet versions:
- 190mm x 40mm
- 190mm x 42.5mm
- 190mm x 45mm
- 210mm x 50mm
- 210mm x 52.5mm
- 210mm x 55mm
You can get the coil option with a linear (black) or a progressive spring (white). The latter offers a 22% progression, similar to the progression of the air shock, starting at around 50% into the stroke length; that is why you’ll see a range of spring rates printed on the coil, rather than a single number. These progressive springs could be a good option for trail bikes that are primarily designed for air shocks that are thus lacking significant progression in their leverage curve.
Also new for the DB Coil IL is the addition of a pre-load adjuster that has three detents for a full rotation (one every 120°), making it easier for riders to measure and accurately reproduce their desired pre-load setting.
Finally, while the DB Air IL and DB Coil IL Shocks don’t offer tool-free adjustment of the damping circuits, they are both home to a 3mm Allen Key that lives on the climb switch, held firmly in position by two magnets. That allows the rider to adjust the high-speed and low-speed rebound and compression.
Pricing & Availability
The Cane Creek DB Air IL retails at $629.99 USD, while the DB Coil IL will set you back $579.99 USD. Both are available right away in the US, with stock in the UK due in early March.