Amazing grip and small-bump sensitivity
Originally intended for downhill use, Cane Creek’s workhorse DB coil shock is now offered with a Climb Switch. It’s aimed at enduro riders looking for coil-spring responsiveness, but who don’t want to be compromised when pedalling.
Trumping a regular ‘lock-out’, by stabilising low-speed damping on both compression and rebound circuits, the Climb Switch increases support when pedalling but at the same time retains traction for technical climbing. It’s a class-leading feature, but the DB’s main focus is really descending performance.
To suit most bikes and riding styles, high and low-speed compression and rebound damping can be tweaked externally with a 3mm Allen key, and ride feel can be set anywhere from tight and poppy to pure plush. This four-way tuning may daunt some less confident about suspension, but Cane Creek now has a free app to help ease the process.
Over months of testing, the DBCoil CS has been totally reliable, but what I noticed most was the extra dimension to smoothness and cornering grip, even over its excellent DBAir sibling. Riding fast across rocks and roots, the bike always stayed in that sweet spot, and repeated hits never dented the shock’s composure.
The coil spring eliminates any seal stiction or notchiness off the top, too, which ensures the bike really floats over terrain. Even out in the Alps, on massive, chairlift-assisted runs, there was no noticeable heat fade or drop off in damping performance.
The steel-sprung DBcoil is heavy and bulky, and the additional 500g over an air shock is noticeable when climbing and riding dynamically. An aftermarket Ti, or SA Racing (alloy), spring would save some weight, but would definitely add cost.
I’m looking for maximum descending fun and confidence though, so I’m prepared to suck up the extra weight for the amazing grip and small-bump sensitivity, especially since it felt so quick, even on the roughest tracks.