Pre-season Testing Ohlins Suspension on an Enduro 29 with Curtis Keene 17

Specialized Racing enduro and downhill athletes are racing on Ohlins suspension for the first time in 2017. Moving to new forks and rear shocks means methodical testing must take place for racers to find their baseline settings that will be used throughout the competitive season. Join EWS athlete, Curtis Keene, as he works with Ohlins at a multi-day testing session to get his Enduro 29 bike dialed in.

Curtis generally runs 170mm of travel front and rear. During their tests, the team successfully found baseline settings for Keene's RFX 36 air fork at 170mm and confirmed that a prototype coil spring weight in his RFX 160mm fork is a home run. Curtis will most likely run coil front and rear suspension throughout 2017 on the Enduro World Series with a 170mm-travel Ohlins RFX 36 29 coil fork in the works.

Credit: Juan Reynaldo / gordo
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17 comments
  • Zoro

    2/16/2017 6:02 PM

    Looks like the new Intense factory team has the TRINIDAD hookup also!! ;-)) http://www.vitalmtb.com/videos/member/Intense-Factory-Racing-Team-Launch-Video,33122/sspomer,2

  • jeff.brines

    2/13/2017 7:26 AM

    Few things...

    1) If coil forks were *really* hands down better performing, you'd see all your WC DH pros on them. Its a taste thing more than anything.

    2) The number of patents that revolve around the air springs that both RS and Fox use is perhaps partially to blame for this. There is some "patent sharing" going on between the two brands (from what I know). I'd be willing to bet Ohlins does not have access to the same technologies when it comes to an air spring. Hence the decision is "not as refined air spring" or "coil", to which I would agree with Keene. That said, it does sound like he ran a coil Lyrik (right?). He's an outliar when it comes to his size and the amount he is riding legit 10 minute plus 3K+ DHs. For those of us that don't ride balls to the wall all the time for double digit amounts of time, I don't think we'll notice the heat factor or the barometric pressure inconsistencies he does. Again, I go back to WC DH...

    3) I agree with TR. Air is so easy to tune, and gives the rider a lot of options as far as tuning the curve. Who likes swapping coils? Nobody. Its expensive, and a number of riders end up making some pretty big compromises anyway (if you can't get the rate you need).

  • iceman2058

    2/12/2017 7:53 AM

    Boy can ride a bike, those last action segments were smoooooth!

  • TEAMROBOT

    2/11/2017 5:02 PM

    I would never, ever, ever want to go back to a coil fork. Coil rear sure, especially on a little dick bike that's getting hammered in the rear suspension, but why would you give up the air spring tuning?

  • DrewB

    2/11/2017 5:38 PM

    I thought you had logged off the interwebs for good TeamRobooty! You should write a blog about your hate for coils.

  • bikeboardorblade

    2/11/2017 5:27 PM

    Granted I don't ride like Curtis or #teamrobot, but after going from a Lyrik RC2DH air to a Vengeance HLR Coil, and back to a Lyrik RCT3, I'm sold on air as well. Turns out I like the progressiveness of air. I'm sold on coil shocks though, still not quite there on the air side.

  • Losvar

    2/13/2017 2:34 AM

    You can get progressive coils too, just cost a few more pennies.
    It's not rare that people run progressive coils on motos and snowmobiles.

  • Bristecom

    2/11/2017 1:31 PM

    Awesome video! I hope they release a coil kit for my Ohlins RF34 (160mm) fork!

  • DrewB

    2/11/2017 12:42 PM

    i thought i misheard "coil FORK" and had to rewatch the first ten seconds.. then i scrolled down expecting to be let down... Nope! COIL FORK FTW!!!!

  • nug12182

    2/11/2017 12:10 PM

    finally!!!2017 enduro with a threaded BB!

  • sideshow

    2/11/2017 11:53 AM

    Whoever says, "Yeah, but air is lighter..." doesn't get it. Coil just works better (more consistently as Curtis said) and is more reliable. This is wicked. How about a 27.5 non-plus guys?

  • Daniel_Layton

    2/12/2017 11:24 AM

    For me as an average joe, its not the weight that sells me on air over coil, its the how much easier/cheaper it is to tune an air fork. Tuning a coil sprung fork is a lot of parts to buy and install and uninstall in iteration until you find your sweet spot. With air, just you have to put an shock pump on it. For me thats a trade that is worth making. If you're one of the most highly supported athletes in the sport, ya have your mech and the ohlin's guy help you sort out a coil fork

  • Losvar

    2/13/2017 2:40 AM

    Running coil in the rear on both my bikes, and going from air to coil was the biggest upgrade I've ever done, so much more consistent performance, and no more overheating of the shock.
    Had a non-reservoir Monarch on the rear of my Mega, and on more gnarly runs it was so hot that it was uncomfortable to touch.
    Would love to convert my DVO Diamond to coil, might actually have to look into a custom solution for that.

  • Krutosis

    2/11/2017 11:19 AM

    Hey Ohlins, I'll buy one; if you support the big guys. We need springs for up-to 250 lbs guys. 190 pound Kurtis is not porky XP

  • tmano2

    2/11/2017 2:56 PM

    don't forget that usually they ride pretty stiff suspension, so what he is running may as well be the same you would ride or stiffer

  • Krutosis

    2/11/2017 4:18 PM

    Very good point.