Cane Creek Double Barrel shock £550

Brilliant, super-adjustable shock that gives unsurpassed ride tuning

BikeRadar score4.5/5

Cane Creek’s Double Barrel shock provides four completely independent dampipng adjustments - high- and low-speed compression and high- and low-speed rebound - so you can fine tune your ride in a way that’s impossible with any other shock.

 The practical upshot is that we were able to set up our Intense Socom to give a super supple and quick response on smaller hits, which made the rear end of the bike feel ultra grippy, and brilliant high speed control. You don’t get kicked up the arse, and the high speed nature relishes hard hits.

It took  a couple of days to tweak the Double Barrel to the optimum set-up for our Socom. By running the high speed compression about half in, and low speed compression about a third in, the bike sits up in the travel, pedals well and takes big hits remarkably well – in the car park it feels under-damped, but it absorbs big hits like nothing else.

The independent rebound adjustment is the key thing here. It’s hard setting up rebound on a regular shock because you will compromise low or high speed damping depending on whether you set your shock up fast or slow. I set the Double Barrel up with high speed most of the way in, and low speed about a quarter in.

This fantastic adjustability comes at a price though, both in money and in convenience. There’s no such thing as an off-the-shelf Double Barrel. You have to specify the model of bike, and your weight when ordering, because the shock bodies are assembled with certain frames in mind (the unique adjusters must be accessible).

The body is the best quality of any shock we’ve seen, but it’s what’s inside that makes this shock really special. It doesn’t use a regular shock layout (the De Carbon system). Instead, the Double Barrel uses a twin tube design that completely isolates the compression and rebound adjustments. These adjustments are split into high and low speed, over both compression and rebound, making four completely separate points of adjustment.

The adjusters themselves require a patient hand, and high speed adjustments require a 10mm socket while low speed adjustments require a small flat-head screwdriver. The range of the adjusters is huge, and recommended start settings are provided – but taking your time with the set-up is essential.

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