The Cane Creek DBINLINE shock caused quite a stir when it was announced in 2014, but although its performance is still top notch today, Cane Creek’s smallest shock frequently suffered from reliability issues. Cane Creek has worked hard to address these problems and has improved many details that find their way into the next shock generation. All details directly from Cane Creek:
Introducing the DBAIR [IL], an all new twin-tube inline shock with superior performance and reliability. The first shock to feature Cane Creek’s LinEair Spring, the DBAIR [IL] is the best of both worlds, an air shock that feels more supple, linear and seamlessly supportive throughout its travel. When developing the DBAIR [IL], our engineering team brought forth great advancements in our design and manufacturing processes, all devised to make our shocks more robust compared to the previous generation. The fully loaded functions of the DBAIR [IL] far outstrips other inline shocks and now offers even greater performance and reliability to unleash the full potential of trail and enduro bikes.
Weight: 335grams (165mmx 38mm no hardware)
Damping: Twin-tube independent compression & rebound in two high-speed and four low-speed damping circuits
Four-way independent adjustment:
- High-speed compression
- Low-speed compression
- High-speed rebound
- Low-speed rebound
- Climb Switch On/Off
Objective: Build off of the core technologies of Double Barrel suspension to offer a new inline twin-tube shock featuring greater reliability and performance.
Bike Targets: Trail and Enduro bikes with 100 – 160mm of travel.
Launched in 2014, the Cane Creek DBINLINE was a leap forward in mountain bike suspension technology that was revered as a game changer to the industry. Building on this legacy, we realized new opportunities for enhanced reliability. With the development of the DBAIR [IL], we brought forth great advancements in our design and manufacturing processes, all designed to make our shocks more robust compared to the previous generation.
These same advancements have been employed into DBINLINE shocks and include the following:
Oil Seal Head Redesign
For consistent performance, the DBAIR [IL] features a completely redesigned oil seal head. In air shocks, this critical component separates the damping oil from the air spring. The continual compression and rebound damping action along with seal friction on long descents generates a large amount of heat, which is then insulated by the air spring. To combat this assault, our new oil seal head features a specialty quad ring made of a high- performance synthetic rubber material that is far more resistant to heat and compression set, (the tendency for an elastomeric material to relax over time) and is 26% larger than the previous design, which provides better sealing under adverse conditions. Made of an advanced material, it is more durable and smoother than standard seals. The shaft bearing has also been redesigned to improve shaft to seal alignment.
Reconfigured Air Piston
A common disorder with air shocks is the tendency for seals to leak. Our engineering team addressed this on two fronts with a more robust air piston that features an upgraded seal.
The first step was to make the seal 26% thicker so that it would be able to maintain better contact with the sealing surface. The second step was to change the material to one that is tougher (more cut and tear itself that reduce friction and wear and further reduce the probability of seal damage.
The end result is greater flexibility for the shock to meet the demands of any trail.
The DBAIR [IL] has the extraordinary damping system and unparalleled adjustability that Double Barrel shocks are known for and embodies Cane Creek’s patented (CS) climbing system within compact shock architecture. The fully loaded functions of the DBAIR [IL] far outstrips other inline shocks and now offers even greater reliability and performance to unleash the full potential of trail and enduro bikes.
The DBAIR [IL] is the first shock to feature Cane Creek’s LinEair Spring. Requiring a lower force to activate, the LinEair Spring provides the consistent feel of a coil shock from the initial stroke, full support during mid stroke and the added bonus of a progressive air spring curve when deep in the travel. The result is the best of both worlds, an air shock that feels more supple, linear and seamlessly supportive throughout its travel.
Setting the DBAIR [IL] apart from other inline shocks, oil circulates continuously through externally adjustable shock valves. Twin-tube shocks have two main chambers, a compression chamber and a rebound chamber, separated by the adjustable valves. The main damping piston forces damping oil between the compression and rebound chambers via the externally adjustable damping valves. Compared to other shocks in its class, Cane Creek inline shocks use significantly more oil in the damper; 40-50% more oil. On the trail, this routing of oil translates into less fade, more control, and greater consistency.
Four-Way Independent Adjustment
The DBAIR [IL] offers an unparalleled range of adjustability through external adjusters that independently control each phase of damping without crossover effects. Other inline shocks typically provide the user with a single rebound adjustment or rebound combined with limited pre-set low-speed compression. The easy tunability of Double Barrels means a rider can make a quick trail-side change, increasing pop, plushness, or other features for personalized fine tuning. For added ease of set up, Cane Creek offers DIALED, a free mobile app to turn your smart phone into a tuning expert.
Patented Climb Switch (CS) Technology
CS shocks have four low-speed damping circuits and two high-speed damping circuits. When engaged, the low-speed damping is changed via a set of internal “climbing circuits”. Cane Creek tunes these circuits specifically for the demands of off-road climbing to achieve improved pedal efficiency with less chassis motion. Unlike other climbing platforms, Cane Creek’s CS feature adjusts both low speed compression and rebound.
Upgrades for existing shocks
For DBINLINE owners, Cane Creek and its service centers are providing the new internal parts during every rebuild at no cost; that’s new air piston and new oil seal head, for both warranty or paid service. Also, riders can upgrade their DBINLINE to the new DBAIR [IL] while it is in for service or warranty at Cane Creek. Under warranty, a DBINLINE can be upgraded to a DBAIR [IL] for $65 USD. If not a warranty, DBINLINE owners can upgrade to a DBAIR [IL] for $225 USD.
OPT climb switch handlebar remote
Cane Creek’s patented Climb Switch technology has changed the way riders think about suspension. No other shock on the market offers climbing-specific damping for both compression and rebound. Keeping suspension active while climbing results in better connection to the trail and increased efficiency without annoying pedal-bob. The Double Barrel in-line valve body was designed to be retrofitted with a remote accessing the CS feature at the sway of a thumb – never leaving the handlebars.
Introducing OPT – the Climb Switch handlebar remote that is optimized throughout its travel from off to on. Thus giving riders the option to tune their Climb Switch to their desired riding preference. OPT offers two mounting options (Top or Bottom) to allow for a variety of fitment orientations.
- Top mount (Cable enters shock mount from the top eyelet side of the shock)
- Bottom mount (Cable enters shock mount from stanchion side of the shock)
- DBCOIL [IL]
- DBAIR [IL]
DROPT dropper seat post remote
With so many options for on-the-fly adjustments on handlebars, it’s easy to clutter this valuable space with a variety of levers. To maximize handlebar real estate, this cable-actuating dropper post remote was designed to couple with the OPT Climb Switch and create one clean connection to the handlebar for two remote systems. Adjustable lever positioning, cable pull options to limit lever movement, and two types of cable insertion methods make the Cane Creek dropper remote the most versatile on the market. Provided with a handlebar mount, this remote system can also be used separately from OPT for a high quality dropper remote.
The DROPT remote is compatible with posts using a cable actuating remote.
- Shifter Style – Left Side
- Adjustable Cable Pull (Limits lever movement)
- Adjustable Lever Positioning
- Sealed pivot axis bearing
- Removable Hinge Couples with OPT
- Standard Mount
- Matchmaker Compatible
For more information visit the Cane Creek website
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Words & Photos: Cane Creek