Formula Italy finally just revealed what they’ve been semi-secretly working on for some time now…We knew it was a DH fork, but didn’t have much details. Available in 27.5″ and 29″, it has both a coil and 3-chamber air option for the spring. Their adjustable air spring works in lieu of volume reducers and adds a bit more range to its infinite tuning. At 2610 grams the Nero is about on par with a Boxxer in terms of weight. Read on to check out Formula’s press release and thorough description of the air spring system…One of our Italian editors just rode one in Val Di Sole, so stay tuned for our thoughts.
- 3 Air Chamber Spring
- High and Low Speed Compression
- Coil Spring with External Preload Adjustment
- High and Low Speed Compression
Availability and Pricing
The 3Air is the technological heart of the Nero R. The fork features a three air chamber system: Gold (end-stroke progressivity), Silver (positive) and Bronze (negative). The use of this technology allows full customisation of the spring curve. The big advantage is not only to be able to shape the fork’s performance the finest amount, but also to do it quickly and easily.
Thanks to the 3Air system, you will be able to accurately adjust your fork without taking it of the bike, without using tools, without having to use internal air volume spacers; all you will need is a shock pump.
With 3Air, you can quickly find the perfect setup for your fork, and quickly change it if needed to the specific needs of a race course or weather conditions.
The range of adjustments are so wide that you will be able to manipulate the spring curve using only air. In other words, the advantage of the 3Air system is to be able to obtain any type of performance, including the feeling of a coil spring, but with fine-tuning options that a traditional air system, or a coil spring, can’t provide.
Furthermore, given the short amount of time you need to set your bike up, you can stay focused on choosing the lines for your race run.
Visit the following link to watch the tutorial on how to adjust the three air chambers on the Nero R.
The Gold valve of Nero R controls the end-stroke progressivity of the spring curve. This chamber is the heart of the innovative 3Air system. The third chamber of the Nero R is not a traditional bottom-out chamber. As a matter of fact, a standard bottom-out operates only at the end of the travel and often in a sudden, uncontrolled way.
Basically, a traditional bottom-out merely increases the spring rate massively at the end of the stroke to reduce bottom-outs. However, the third chamber of the Nero R allows to fine tune the compression curve from about half of the travel to the end of the travel, thus allowing the rider to reach extremely accurate setup and customisation levels.
By simply using a shock pump, you will be able to customise the performance of the fork, adapting it to your riding style, all in a simple and quick way. It won’t be necessary to unscrew anything or to use any tools, and you won’t need any air volume spacers. All you will need is a shock pump and in few minutes you will reach the desired outcome.
During a race weekend, where the track changes every run and where time is of the essence, even outside the track under the paddock, the 3Air system of the Nero R will allow you to reach your ideal setup in the shortest possible time. It takes very little to set the progressivity of the Nero R.
The real benefit of this system is that the chambers always work simultaneously, that’s why it is possible to use the third chamber to control the progressivity. Add 10 PSI or more through the Gold valve if you want a more progressive behaviour. Remove 10 PSI or more through the Gold valve if you want a more linear behaviour towards the end of the travel.
The negative chamber of the Nero R is controlled by the Bronze valve. Through this valve, you can fine-tune the feeling of the fork in the initial part of the travel.
If you are looking for more compliant performance over small bumps, you will just need to add few PSI, whereas if you are looking for a firmer feeling at the beginning of the travel, then you will have to decrease the pressure by a little. Even in this case, you will have a full control and you will be able to shape the first part of the travel according to your riding style or to the specific requirements of a track. The procedure is very simple – all you have to do is to use a shock pump.
Thanks to the 3Air, Nero R introduces the possibility to customise your fork to a new level. Saving time in the pits means also saving it in your race run. A fork that is quickly and easily adaptable to the needs of different tracks and different weather conditions gives a considerable advantage against the clock.
The setup of the Nero R is extremely simple; you just need to follow the pressures suggested on the pressure chart you’ll find on the fork. Always remember to follow the inflating procedure in order to reach the desired setup.
The Gold valve (end-stroke progressivity) is always the first to be inflated, the Silver valve (positive) is the second one, while the Bronze valve (negative) is always the last one to be inflated. The procedure is simple, just remember the sequence of the World Champs podium: Gold, Silver and Bronze.
In order to make the procedure even simpler and more precise, every Nero R will be equipped with a cutting-edge high pressure pump compatible with all suspension brands.
To avoid any air loss detaching the pump from the valve, we have used a pump with a quick-release mechanism instead of the traditional second screw.
If you want to personalise your setup, the 3Air system gives you almost limitless possibilities. All it takes is to follow three simple rules: 1) always respect the inflating sequence: Gold, Silver and Bronze; 2) Always inflate the Gold valve with a pressure that is greater than or equal to the pressure in the Silver chamber; 3) always inflate the Bronze chamber with a pressure at least 20 PSI greater than the pressure in the Silver valve.
Both Nero R and Nero C are equipped with damper that allows for accurate and controlled adjustment of the fork’s stroke.
Through the high-speed compression adjustment, you can adjust the rate of compression during big hits, such as drops or square-edge impacts at high speed.
Through the low-speed compression adjustment, you can set the rate of compression on small bumps, influencing the compliance of the fork on small impacts and under braking.
The rebound adjustment controls the rate of the forks return from compression.
Nero C (Coil Spring)
Nero C is a fork designed for those who love the feeling of a coil spring and want a fit-and-forget fork for their local bike park.
The damper is identical to that used in the Nero R, incorporating high speed compression, low speed compression and rebound adjustment.
Instead of the 3Air system, the Nero C employs a coil spring with tool-free preload adjustment.
In order to set the fork for the rider’s weight, there are three different spring rates available for the Nero C: soft, medium and firm. If you love to smash bike park laps, if you ride more than 5000m of vertical in one day using the lift, if you love the feel of a coil spring but still want the best in damping quality and adjustability, then the Nero C is the fork for you.
Internal Floating Technology
The IFT (Internal Floating Technology) is what truly differentiates our forks from any other fork. Smoothness is very important in terms of suspension performance. All forks, regardless of their stiffness, experience some kind of lateral stress while riding. This type of stress increases the friction of the internal parts.
Thanks to Formula’s design, our hydraulic cartridge is structurally merged with the stanchions and lower legs. In a riding situation, our internals compensate for the external stresses placed on the fork. This causes an incredible reduction of friction.
The ability of a fork to resist flexing is a key factor for maximum riding precision. A fork that rebounds too fast may make riding unsafe with an overall lack of control, above all when braking and cornering.
In the same way, it is important that the fork is not too stiff, because it may make riding too tiring. Many riders are skeptical about using boost because they fear the forks have too much flex and added weight. When designing the Nero we had a fundamental aim in mind, finding the perfect balance point between stiffness and flex, this is the same as our standard forks.
Thanks to the Hexagon design, the natural flex of the fork has been dramatically decreased with this lightweight method. In this way, we have managed to combine the advantages of the standard boost with the stiffness of a traditional fork.
Downhill forks are constantly exposed to an extraordinary amount of stress, especially in the thru-axle area. Nero fork is fitted with a new system called Firm.
When designing this system, the aim was to make wheel changes quick and easy, getting rid of multiple screws on the lowers, and at the same time offering the maximum stiffness.
The Firm locking system centres on a 20mm thru-axle that is secured by a ‘counter-knob’ that is tightened after the axle is installed and prevents the axle from unscrewing. Firm provides maximum security and minimum weight.
Nero is one of the first downhill forks to employ the soon-to-be universal Boost 20x110mm DH standard. Although current DH forks use a 20x110mm axle, the Boost standard maximises the available space, widening the flange distance of the hub and moving the brake rotor outwards, technology that we have taken advantage of on our Linea G wheels.
Since 29” wheels are gaining traction in DH, and considering that the Nero will also be available in 29”, we decided to future-proof Nero by employing the Boost standard.
Don’t worry if you want to keep your current non-Boost DH wheels though, every aftermarket Nero fork will be sold with an adapter to be inserted under the rotor which will allow the use of you current non-Boost front wheel.