Ultimate Guide to Mountain Bike Dropper Posts

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Dropper posts have completely revolutionized mountain biking. Most professionals would agree that they are one of the best ways you can upgrade your bike – they also look cool AF!

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Quick Overview – Top 4 Dropper Posts

What Does a Mountain Bike Dropper Post do?

Dropper posts let you lower the height of your bicycle saddle as you ride, allowing you to shift around more easily as you descend during your biking journey. Once you need to go up again, you allow this to return to the right height for pedaling efficiency.

Why use a dropper seatpost?

This is all done without the need to stop mid bike-ride. These traits make dropper posts perfect for endurance racing, where the ability to switch from an uphill sprint to a speedy descent is crucial to your success. But even XC and trail riders stand to benefit from using one.

The Best Mountain Bike Dropper Posts Reviews

Lots of different types of dropper posts exist out there in the mountain bike gear world. This article will show you the best products available on the market right now, then explain a bit more about choosing the right post and how to use it.

Oneup Components Dropper Seat Post V2

This dropper seatpost from Oneup comes in two diameters for a secure fit to most bike frames. Though it is also possible to find adaptors to allow you to use this post in larger diameter frames. And at 1.12 pounds, the post weighs a little over twice that of a standard seat post.

Oneup dropper post on a full suspension mountain bike

Features

Weights: 1.12 pounds (0.51 kg)
Diameters: 1.217 inch (3.1 cm), 1.244 inch (3.2 cm)
Usable Height: 13.39 inch (34.0 cm), 12.50 inch (32.0 cm)
Travel: 6.69 inch (17.0 cm), 5.91 inch (15.0 cm)

The seatpost is cable actuated, relying on an internal cable connected to a lever. So, if you want to use this on your bike, you need to either have a cable-ready bike or drill a hole in the frame to feed the cable through. The remote and cable housing does NOT come with the kit.

The height is simple to adjust on the go, the actuator cable locks the seat travel and returns to the full height of 13.38 inches when released. This post has a lot of travel, close to 6.7 inches. And you can pre-set the travel down to a little over 4.7 inches, depending on whether you need it for speed riding or to get the most from your jumps.

Ultimate Guide to Mountain Bike Dropper Posts 2

KS Eten Dropper Seatpost 

KS Eten dropper post showing full extension of postThe KS Eten comes in three different diameters to cater to various bike frames. These various diameters have an effect on the weight of the seatposts, which ranges between 1.47 pounds and 1.53 pounds. These are entry-level droppers and not lightweight, but fine for downhill runs and jumps.

Features

Weights: 1.477 pounds (0.67 kg), 1.521 pounds (0.69 kg), 1.532 pounds (0.695 kg)
Diameters: 1.217 inch (3.09 cm), 1.244 inch (3.16 cm)
Usable Height: 13.39 inch (34.0 cm), 12.50 inch (32.0 cm)
Travel: 6.69 inch (17.0 cm), 5.91 inch (15.0 cm)

A lever built-in into the seatpost varies the seat height. The lever is at the top of the seatpost, where it is easiest to reach. This means that the height is quick to change, and the post is quick to remove, or you can use it on another bike. It is a clever design, but it is not practical to adjust an under-seat lever while you are riding. In contrast, you can ride and activate a handlebar-mounted lever.

The hydraulic cartridge and a sealed air spring help the rider to alter the height of the seatpost. This dropper comes ready to use and install on any bike. This is a great unit to experience the benefits of a hydraulic seat dropper without breaking the bank.

Ultimate Guide to Mountain Bike Dropper Posts 2

Crankbrothers Highline Seatpost

 

Crankbrothers Dropper Post

Crankbrothers Highline Seatpost will appeal more to the experienced rider. This seatpost is for a rider that has had experience with a dropper post and now needs more. Riders may notice the rise of the Crankbrothers seatpost to rise is a little slower than expected. Easy to install and use, the dropper comes ready for two different seatpost diameters, so it will fit most downhill bikes.

Features

Weights: 1.36 pounds (0.615 kg), with cable and housing 1.38 pounds (0.625 kg),
Diameters: 1.217 inch (3.09 cm), 1.244 inch (3.16 cm)
Usable Height: 9.72 — 13.38 inch (24.7 — 36.5 cm)
Travel: 3.93 — 6.69 inches (10.0 — 17.0 cm)

The actuator has a decent level of travel, and a handlebar-mounted lever makes it easy to change between short and long reaches while on the go. The saddle clamp is also firm and easy to install, so you will not feel it slipping or be hearing creaks in the middle of your ride.

This post is stiffer than some other posts, which may appeal to more seasoned riders that prefer the control. The lever assembly is removable with a quick-release mechanism, but it does need a bike with an actuator cable hole, or you will have to drill one.

Ultimate Guide to Mountain Bike Dropper Posts 6

Foundation Dropper Seatpost

A reliable seat post that can manage the demanding conditions of an outdoor adventure. Foundation’s Dropper Seatpost will fit most mountain bike frames with 1.217-inch and 1.244-inch diameter frames. Though because this post has an internal lever cable, the bike frame will need a hole to feed the cable through.

Features

Weights: –
Diameters: 1.217 inch (3.1 cm), 1.244 inch (3.2 cm)
Usable Height: 12.21 inches (31.0 cm)
Travel: 5.91 inches (15 cm)

The actuator cable comes with a lever, so you will not be hunting around for parts when you buy this dropper. And the lever cable is quick to release and attach to the post. So, you can bring this post along to your ride, change out your standard post, and install the Foundation on the spot.

The 5.9-inch travel is decent for a post of this price and one that will manage a trail well. We have seen some medium-range dropper posts with slow or excessive response times. The foundation is not slow and returns to full height at a respectable and non-painful speed.

Ultimate Guide to Mountain Bike Dropper Posts 6

Bike Yoke Revive Dropper Post

Bike Yoke dropper postThere is no alternative way to say it — this dropper is for aspiring professionals that want the best on their bikes. This is one of the most lightweight dropper seatposts, and it will help with that pre-start ride up that hill. This post is suitable for Trail, Enduro, and All-Mountain riding.

Features

Weights: 1.07 pounds (0.485 kg)
Diameters: 1.217 inches (3.1 cm), 1.244 inches (3.2 cm), 1.37 inches (3.5 cm)
Usable Height: 11.21 inches (28.5 cm), 13.18 inches (33.5 cm), 13.18 inches (33.5 cm)
Travel: 4.95 inches (12.5 cm), 6.9 inches (17.6 cm), 7.28 inches (18.5 cm)

As you would expect of a premium unit, the lever and cable come with this seatpost package. The cable runs out through the bottom of the actuator, so your bike will need a hole in the frame to run the cable through, or you will need to drill one.

The Bike Yoke Revive uses two dynamic seals to lessen the chance of a blowout on those large jumps. Depending on the type of terrain, you have a decent number of ways to personalize this dropper so that you can get the most from it on a ride.

Fox Transfer Factory Dropper Post

Fox Racing do not only make awesome helmets. The second edition of Fox’s dropper post has been very successful. This product has a fast step-less, smooth design, and very reliable cartridge internals. These offer as much as 150mm of travel and externally and internally routed designs.

You can choose between an under-bar cable remote (1x specific) or a shifter-enabled cable remote. The twin clamp head can be micro-adjusted, is easy to adjust, and provides security.

ROCKSHOX REVERB Dropper Post Review

ROCKSHOX is known for producing quality products, and the REVERB is no exception. The company has pioneered something new in their internal routing; “Stealth.” This has become an included, standard feature with most newer frames. This prevents the fragile hydraulic hose from moving around too much and instead keeps it out of harm on the frame’s inside.

image of the reverb switch on the handle bars of an MTB to adjust the post dropper
Reverb 1X Switch

The adjustment is now 150mm (125 or 100 if you prefer that) and you can choose to mount the lever on the right or left, as well as below or above the bars. You can also choose the mount called “Matchmaker X” by SRAM to attach the Reverb adjuster to a SRAM/Avid lever for braking. Overall, this dropper post is super smooth and comes with lots of neat extras.

Cascade Dropper Post Review

PNW Components Cascade Dropper Post, 125/150/170mm Travel, External Routing, (30.9/125mm)
117 Reviews
PNW Components Cascade Dropper Post, 125/150/170mm Travel, External Routing, (30.9/125mm)
  • 125, 150 and 170mm Travel Dropper Post
  • Lightweight sealed alloy cartridge
  • External cable routing
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Unless indicated with (NO LEVER KIT), Includes Puget MTB 2x Lever, cables and all required hardware. NO LEVER KIT DOES NOT include cable, housing or lever. Sorry, Lever substitutions are not available.

For the price you’ll pay, the Cascade Dropper Post is amazing value. If you don’t already use a dropper post, this is a good place to start. It offers a smooth operation and a fast return speed. This addition can make downhill runs much more fun for you.

It’s easy to install, especially if you know anything about mechanical matters. Make sure that the post is entirely installed and definitely works before you cut the post at the end of the installation.

Although it’s light, it doesn’t feel cheap at all and is well-made. If you’re ready to transform your entire mountain biking experience, including downhill runs, you can’t do much better than this.

Thomson Elite Covert Dropper Post Review

Thomson has been known for its great stems and high-quality seat posts, and now it’s added something new to its line of products. The first stealth dropper post by Thomson, the Elite, has quickly been adapted to work well with internal routing functions.

True, it does have just 125mm, but it’s very reliable and smooth. The finish and fit are high-quality, as you’d expect from Thomson. You’ll be glad to know that the cable remote functions with the majority of set-ups. In addition, the post’s step-less design doesn’t have a lot of side-to-side play going on while in use.

If you’re working with a frame that is older and requires a 27.2mm product, you can find a post that fits by Thomson, but keep in mind that it does only come externally routed.

TranzX Hot Lap Lightweight Dropper Post

The Hot Lap is a lightweight, short-travel dropper post that belies its $150 price tag. At first glance, it is obvious that this dropper post is designed for speed with its rapid 50mm drop. It is powered by a hydraulic cartridge and routed internally for a neat, tangle-free installation, making it a powerful addition to gravel and XC bikes that feature longer seat tubes and horizontal top tubes.

TranX Dropper Features

· Weight: 545 grams
· Diameters: 27.2, 30.9, 31.6mm
· Usable Height: 319mm
· Travel: 50mm

TranzX Hot Lap Lightweight Dropper Post

Most of the dropper is constructed from high-strength 7075 aluminum save for the hydraulic cartridge, which is replaceable in ten minutes or less. Access to the cartridge is conveniently positioned beneath the saddle clamp—a Schrader valve that allows you to pressurize the dropper post for quicker return speeds.

The cable-actuated dropper requires access to the inside of the frame, so apart from drilling a hole for the internal routing (where necessary), installation is quite straightforward. It comes with two types of remote levers: the traditional paddle lever that feels a bit more familiar and a vertical lever that takes up very little space on the handlebar.

Performance-wise, it lacks the snappy retraction and return of droppers like the Fox Transfer post. Its retraction and return speeds may feel damped if you’re used to faster droppers. The overall performance is reliable, nonetheless, especially since it supports infinite adjustments. You can add more air pressure to fine-tune the return speed, but that’s going to increase the retraction effort, so it may or may not be worth the adjustment.

PNW Rainier Generation 3 Dropper Post

The Gen-3 PNW Rainier Dropper is a modestly-priced mid-tier option that still delivers a sound performance. It is available in four lengths with travels that range from 125mm – 200mm. There’s nothing particularly new about the stepped bushing adjustment system, which lets you reduce the travel by up to 30mm in small 5mm increments. However, this system works for a reason, that reason being that it’s relatively quick and easy to manipulate.

Gen-3 PNW Rainier Dropper  Features

· Weight: 715 grams
· Diameters: 30.9, 31.6, 34.9mm
· Usable Height: 268, 318, 358,353mm
· Travel: 125, 150, 170, 200mm

The dropper is internally routed and uses a standard shifter actuation cable. Since the cable headrests at the post end, installation is not as hectic or stressful as you might expect. Powering the Rainier Gen 3 is a non-serviceable sealed cartridge, which can easily be swapped out for a new one.

Installation is done via a two-bolt clamp, and the advantage of this is that the cartridge can be positioned anywhere within the travel range.

Another benefit of using PNW droppers is that you get different lever options to pair with. These are sold separately. There’s the Puget Lever, which is compatible with 2x shifters, the single-shifter version of the Puget Lever, and the Loam Lever, a top-tier lever for high performances.

Syncros’s Duncan Dropper 2.0

Syncros’s Duncan Dropper 2.0This dropper post is not for everyone since it’s greatly limited by size and travel options. However, anyone that can run it will love its performance, especially since it’s priced quite affordably. Delivering outstandingly smooth action, this pressure-adjustable dropper feels easier to adjust on the go. You will also love its snappy installation process that’s facilitated by a twin-bolt saddle clamp.

The fitting procedure can get a little fiddly, and it would be a much nicer option if equipped with a shifter-style remote instead of an over-bar remote. Nevertheless, it’s still a decent dropper by most cyclists’ standards.

Features

· Weight:526 grams (150mm) minus cables and remote
· Diameter: 31.6mm
· Usable Height:
· Travel: 150mm (reviewed), 125mm

The cable-operated seatpost features internal routing and vertical-push remote operation. You can get it in two variations: one that offers 125mm of travel, and another that offers 150mm. Despite its seemingly limited travel options, it’s not all bad. The cabling style is also a little cumbersome as it requires the barrel to be attached to the post end with a grub screw. It’s clumsier than using a cable nipple at the post end.

On the upside, the two-bolt seat clamp is always reliable, and it leaves plenty of room for adjustment. You’ll certainly enjoy that it’s easier to level up the saddle with this configuration. Even though it mimics a lot of the appearance and functionality of Race Face and Brand-X dropper posts, it is still worthy of consideration. However, the other two alternatives do come with an improved cabling style and a better remote—plus, they’re significantly cheaper.

Whyte Bike Drop.it Seatpost

The Whyte Drop.it seat post comes in three travel options: 125, 150, and 170mm—already, it is quite the versatile dropper that’s compatible with gravel biking and XC applications. On paper, it is a robust telescopic seat post that’s advertised as compatible with enduro and all trail bikes. Like many options these days, it is a cable-actuated, internally routed mechanical system with decent travel—albeit it only comes in one diameter (30.9mm)

Whyte Bike Drop.it Seatpost

Drop.it Features

· Weight:
· Diameter: 30.9mm
· Usable Height: 30mm
· Travel: 125mm, 150mm, 170mm

The seatpost is powered by a replaceable sealed hydraulic cartridge, which riders may find more convenient than repairable models that require intricate mechanical knowledge to maintain. By far, the biggest letdown is that it only comes in one diameter—that limits a lot of bikes from using this seatpost.

Nevertheless, the telescopic dropper compensates with multiple stroke lengths to suit different activities and applications. Internal cable routing means that you might need to drill a hole to pass the cable through, although it does make for a much neater setup and configuration. That means that the installation process can prove slightly cumbersome.

Cartridge replacement is straightforward, and its performance is decent—nowhere close to the high-end Fox Transfer posts but decent retraction and returns action nonetheless.

The dropper comes fully equipped with a switch, the inner and outer cable, and bungs for all three travel options. However, the remote is sold separately, so you can equip it with the more convenient paddle remote or even an over-bar switch if you prefer.

Dropper Post FAQs

Do I need a dropper post for my mountain bike?

Of course you do, even if it’s just to impress your mates :)

Can you add a dropper post to any mountain bike?

Yes, just check your current seat post diameter in your manual or online

What makes a good dropper post?

A good dropper post should provide a fast and smoother seat drop at a flick of a switch.  The handlebar trigger should also be minimal in design.

Why are dropper posts so expensive?

Dropper post are not just static post, but have moving parts that need to be extremely durable – this makes the parts expensive. Saying that, check out our deals page, we always highlight dropper posts currently on offer.

Are dropper posts hard to fit?

It’s very simple, but housing the cable neatly requires patience.

Is 125mm dropper post enough?

This is fine for most riders, unless you are well over 6ft

How long do dropper posts last?

Most dropper posts come with a 2-3 year warranty and can easily last for 10+ years

Dropper Post Buying Guide

What features should you keep an eye out for when you’re investing in and getting comfortable with dropper posts for your bike? Keep the following in mind:

Stealth Dropper Post Sizing

When it comes to sizing, you’ll have to choose between a couple options. First, you need to pick the right diameter for the frame of your bike. Although you’ll see many choices for diameters in seat posts, the industry has fortunately settled on a smaller number.

The most common two sizes will be the 31.6mm and 30.9mm sizes. You can also see 34.9 and 27.2mm sizes out there, though they’re less common. A lot of hard tails, both new and old, use 27.2mm, so thankfully some manufacturers are offering posts that will fit them.

>> Read the best MTB seat reviews

Routing in Your Mountain Bike Dropper Post

After you figure out which size you need for your post, you must pick the right hose/cable routing for the bike you have. Fortunately, this isn’t very hard because only two choices exist. These are internal (or “Stealth”) and external. Droppers should work the same way functionally, regardless of their routing.

dropper post routing within frame
Custom dropper post wire routing within frame tubing

External routing means the hose/cable runs from your handlebar’s remote to your frame’s outer-post. Usually, this will run either underneath, at the side, or on the top tube of the frame. This type of routing makes mounting the post easy, even if you aren’t very experienced with this.

Adjustment for Travel

Most posts offer you the choice of infinite adjustments. In other words, you can stop it anytime during travel. Some posts will have preset positions included with them, as well, though how often you’ll use these depends on your needs and familiarity with the product.

Buying a dropper post – Which is best?

As you can see, if you’re serious about your mountain biking, you can’t afford to miss out on investing in a stealth dropper post. Based on the features of each, the Thomson Elite Covert Dropper is by far the best on our list. Take action and get one today!

Image sources: Sram.com, Jenson USA


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