The development

The new R 414 shock is a perfect example of the passion we put into every DT Swiss product - and it rode directly from our testing grounds to a World Champion title!

From the concept

From the concept

As a technical concept the R 414 was first laid out in CAD. The design concept and technical requirements then had to be aligned. Features like the shape and function of the O.D.L lever were revised during that process between designers and engineers.
To the product

To the product

Graphic elements and surface finish were defined and variations were tested on prototypes. Further iterations e.g. of the grooves acting as a graphic element and grip were prototyped and tested. As a result, the elegant conical silhouette of the R 414 has just the right air volumes for both the positive- and negative air chamber. Form and function are perfectly united.


Development

Development

Parallel to developing the design, lots of testing sessions were done. To get a perfect product, one needs to pay attention to the basic functions and to little details alike – from the ideal spring rate to the right feel of the clicks on the rebound damping dial. The shock's sensitivity has been greatly improved by the new Liné-Air air chamber with its huge negative air spring volume and by modifications on the compression damping piston. Additionally, we optimized the rebound unit to better handle fast, repetitive hits. Our suspension engineer Sam Zbinden's work place is both in the lab and out on the trails – trails he has built himself and as a professional DH rider also knows how to ride. This is how a truly refined product with a very low weight and high reliability – like all DT Swiss products – comes to be. The R 414: Super sensitive, great support in the mid stroke and a well defined end stroke progression.
Winning

Winning

Since our athletes like Nino Schurter are always involved in the product development process, Nino also received a working prototype of the R 414 for testing. Initially developed for trail rides which turn out a little rougher, it was never meant to be used on Nino's hardcore, trimmed down XC race bike. But sometimes things go differently. Nino was so happy with the R 414's performance, that he chose to race the prototype he had received just in time for the Val di Sole World Cup. He won the race and went on to win the World Championship in Vallnord on that same shock.