Finding a shorter stroke coil shock used to be a tricky proposition – there simply weren't many options available in non-DH bike sizes. That's changed over the last few years, fueled by the demands of riders looking to maximize the descending capabilities of their trail bikes. Marzocchi is joining in on the coil craze with the release of the Bomber CR, which is intended to be a simple, reliable, and relatively affordable option.
If the Bomber CR looks familiar, that's because it's a slightly modified version of a Fox Vanilla RC. Fox's efforts are now focused on their highest end, top tier products, while Marzocchi is concentrating on the workhorse products, the ones that aren't quite as adjustable, and may be a little heavier, but can get the job done without a fuss.
Bomber CR Details
• Adjustments: rebound, low speed compression
• Standard: 7.5x2.0”, 7.875x2.0”, 7.875x2.25”, 8.5x2.5”, 8.75x2.75”
• Metric: 210x50, 210x55, 230x60, 230x65, 250x75mm
• Trunnion: 185x52.5, 185x55, 205x60, 205x65, 225x75mm
• Weight: 210x50: 356 grams (body only), 924 grams with spring
• MSRP: $299 USD + $29.95 (spring)
Previously, the Vanilla RC was available aftermarket, but the sizes and availability were limited, due to the fact that it was positioned as more of an OEM option. With the Bomber CR that's no longer the case, and there are a wide range of metric and standard size available, everything from a trunnion mounted 185x52.5mm up to a 225x75mm version.
The Bomber CR is priced at $299 for the shock and $29.95 for the spring, and is available now.
Simplicity is the name of the game with the Bomber CR - low speed compression, rebound, and spring preload are the only external adjustments.
The Bomber CR is about as simple as it gets. There's a gold knob to adjust the low speed compression, and a red one for the rebound, and that's it. Once you have the correct weight spring in place there shouldn't be much fiddling required before hitting the trail. Constant tinkers may want more adjustability, but the Bomber CR is aimed at the set-and-forget crowd. After all, there's something to be said about not needing to worry if one more click of high speed compression or rebound damping would make things better.
The external adjustments are simple, but things are slightly more complex when you look at a cutaway image of the shock. According to Marzocchi, there's a high flow piston inside the Bomber's reservoir, which is backed by backed by Belleville washers. Those conical spring washers are meant to allow for a much higher flow of oil once a certain pressure is reached, keeping the shock responsive and composed even during repeated hard impacts. The shock also has a mid valve that provides even more damping support during those big hits. More than likely, most riders will get along just fine with the stock tune of the Bomber CR, but the shim based design does make custom tuning a possibility.