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Thread: Droppers?

  1. #1
    Knollician
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    Droppers?

    OK, I'm sure this has been hashed out before, but I have always ignored the conversations as I have never been interested. I think that droppers are finally getting to the point of being reasonably reliable and have most of the slop issues resolved. So here are the 3 I would potentially be interested in.

    LEV - I like the fixed cable routing, and the remote, simple and clever. However I have been reading that the internal cable is prone to breaking, as is the small clip that attaches the remote cable to the internal cable. As I understand this is not user serviceable.

    Thomson - Love Thomson products, the only drawback I see is the cable mounting. But how big of a deal is it really? Seems like it might be the most reliable post, but with some annoying cable issues

    Reverb - The one I saw in person was totally ratted out, and there was a ton of saddle slop. Like the idea of the hydro remote, but it seems rather large and frail.

    How has your experience been? I know the Thomson is not yet available but it looks like it might be the nicest of the 3.
    "Three balls at once...who knew?" - Cotton McKnight

  2. #2
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    The cable issue is a deal breaker for me. I cant stand the loop that it creates when the seat is dropped. It either rubs your leg or gets caught on something. I hadn't heard of these LEV issues, but it will most likely be my next dropper post. The Thomson isnt even out yet, so no judgments cant be made on it quite yet. They definitely missed the boat on the cable placement. Coming in late to the game as they did, they should have mounted it at the collar. The Reverb and LEV are the top two in my opinion. I currently run a gravity dropper, and while it isnt the prettiest, it is by far the most reliable of any of the dropper posts, and it doesnt have cable loop issues.

  3. #3
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    Droppers?

    I haven't noticed my Reverb cable once. It's out of the way as far as I'm concerned when riding.

  4. #4
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    I have a 2012 Reverb, had it for almost a year. The moving line hasn't been an issue for me since I coil it around the seat tube; it doesn't get in the way when you drop it.

    Reliability has been alright I guess (no ride-stopping failures). If I bought another one I would go for the Lev, mostly for cable activation (over hydraulic) and the grip integrated remote.
    Mine doesn't have any noticeable slop, but you are right that the remote is fragile and difficult to fit comfortably with other controls. It also seems to let air into the system whenever I use it, but I've gotten used to the mushy feel.
    Post also has a slow leak in the airspring, but that is apparently user fixable. I just pump it up every few weeks.

  5. #5
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    I got a Reverb towards the end of the first year they came out (this was the summer before the first batch Chilcotins were delivered in the fall.) Failed once towards the end of a ride. SRAM repaired under warranty. Was all good for about a month then quit mid-ride one day, thankfully it was stuck up and just wouldn't go down, so I could pedal out. SRAM just replaced it with a brand new one, since it'd already been back once. I promptly sold it, and also sold the 2nd one I'd picked up on a good deal that was sitting in the parts box waiting on the Chilicotin. Also found them annoying to bleed. Not hard, just annoying. I also didn't like the non-fixed cable routing. I managed to get it out of the way, but it just looks like it's asking to catch something and get ripped off IMHO.

    I now have a Lev on the Chili, had it about 6 weeks or so, love it so far. Very smooth action, the integrated lever is nice. There's a tad bit of side to side play, but rock solid front to back. Every dropper I've seen has a wee bit of play. I don't notice this at all when riding. And of course the fixed cable play is a plus. I think the internal cable snapping was only on the first ones that hit the market, I read where they resolved that issue. I've not heard of the connector clip having problems.

    My ridding buddy (Cheezwhip here on the forum) is waiting for the Thomson. I'm guessing it will be bombproof. I think they are just shipping now though. The stealth version is due out in a few months I think, but not that we can route it that way on the Chili (easily anyway.)

    Bikebling.com is about the cheapest I've found, they have they priced lower than anyone else I've found, and there's a 15% off coupon floating around as well. Email me if you can't find it and I'll try to dig it up.

    I waited a long time to jump on the dropper post bandwagon. I have to say, they really do make riding more enjoyable.
    If jackasses could fly this place would be an airport.

  6. #6
    Knollician
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    Quote Originally Posted by rscecil007 View Post
    I got a Reverb towards the end of the first year they came out (this was the summer before the first batch Chilcotins were delivered in the fall.) Failed once towards the end of a ride. SRAM repaired under warranty. Was all good for about a month then quit mid-ride one day, thankfully it was stuck up and just wouldn't go down. SRAM just replaced it with a brand new one, since it'd already been back once. I promptly sold it, and also sold the 2nd one I'd picked up on a good deal that was sitting in the Chilcotin parts box. Also found them annoying to bleed. Not hard, just annoying. I also didn't like the non-fixed cable routing. I managed to get it out of the way, but it just looks like it's asking to catch something and get ripped off IMHO.

    I now have a Lev on the Chili, had it about 6 weeks or so, love it so far. Very smooth action, the integrated lever is nice. There's a tad bit of side to side play, but rock solid front to back. Every dropper I've seen has a wee bit of play. I don't notice this at all when riding. And of course the fixed cable play is a plus. I think the internal cable snapping was only on the first ones that hit the market, I read where they resolved that issue. I've not heard of the connector clip having problems.

    My ridding buddy (Cheezwhip here on the forum) is waiting for the Thomson. I'm guessing it will be bombproof. I think they are just shipping now though. The stealth version is due out in a few months I think, but not that we can route it that way on the Chili (easily anyway.)

    Bikebling.com is about the cheapest I've found, they have they priced lower than anyone else I've found, and there's a 15% off coupon floating around as well. Email me if you can't find it and I'll try to dig it up.

    I waited a long time to jump on the dropper post bandwagon. I have to say, they really do make riding more enjoyable.
    Thanks for info Ryan. If I do go this route, I think the LEV would be the best choice. I am super finicky about my cabling, so a fixed cable would be great. Looks like I will have to go with a 125. The only problem I see is that if I like it, I would need another for the Endo I do like the LEV remote as well.
    "Three balls at once...who knew?" - Cotton McKnight

  7. #7
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    I think you would like it, and yes you will need two of them. Haha. I also had to do 125. I waited forever for the 150, only to realize thanks to TSC's post that the 150 wouldn't work for me. I still think it's plenty of drop though.
    If jackasses could fly this place would be an airport.

  8. #8
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    Another vote for the LEV - been really happy with mine (also was a fan of my i950, but like the fact that the LEVS cable does not move).

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    Also consider the Specialized Command Post Blacklite. Not infinitely adjustable, but much more simple and dealer serviceable. MSRP is $285, so cheaper than most. It has a little bit of set back, so weigh this into fitment. Only gripe I have is the single bolt saddle saddle rail clamp.

    As far as 100mm vs 125mm vs 150mm, I prefer 125 to retain more control of bike position via saddle.

  10. #10
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    I have the Lev and it is great. My internal cable came off like you mentioned. It is, actually, user-able to fix. I sent it in to get fixed but once I had already sent it in, I saw a video on how to service the Levs and during the re-assembly, it shows how to attach that internal cable. You can simply do that part if it happens to you.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by F.N.G View Post
    I have the Lev and it is great. My internal cable came off like you mentioned. It is, actually, user-able to fix. I sent it in to get fixed but once I had already sent it in, I saw a video on how to service the Levs and during the re-assembly, it shows how to attach that internal cable. You can simply do that part if it happens to you.
    Thanks, that is some good info.
    "Three balls at once...who knew?" - Cotton McKnight

  12. #12
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    lev install

    Good Lev install video here by KS, and I think the service one is linked there also.
    If jackasses could fly this place would be an airport.

  13. #13
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    Have an early first run Reverb - like before most shops had seen one.
    Has been stellar, except for the time I had a nasty crash and tore off the hydro line from the remote.
    New hose and barb, a bleed and it has been good since.
    Still nice and tight - minimal head movement.
    I have never had any issues with the cable getting caught on anything ( its on my Delirium )
    Maybe not the most aesthetically pleasing, but so far no use issues.

    I would like a 150mm stealth version though...

    michael
    A Dirtbag since 1969.
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  14. #14
    TSC
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    The LEV is easy to install and how it works is fairly intuitive. Be aware that possibly* there are variations of the remote clamps (ODI compatible or not) and if the "inline cable tension adjuster" comes pre-installed.

    The ODI mating clamp isn't a big deal but it does save a bit of space if you use ODI compatible grips. The "inline cable tension adjuster" is well-done, but unnecessary IMO; and is a place for dirt to enter the system so I would leave it out if it doesn't come pre-installed. You can always add it later if you want.

    Edit: you could always seal the cable tension assembly because you won't use it except if there is a problem.

    *The 125 LEV I bought last year didn't have the "inline cable tension adjuster" pre-installed. I didn't install it because the LEV works fine without it. The 150 LEV my LBS bought from Knolly had the "inline cable tension adjuster" pre-installed, but it didn't have the remote end-clamp that mates with ODI grips (I'm an OURY grip fan) so I used the old cable.
    Last edited by TSC; 05-02-2013 at 08:46 PM.
    "sounds like you need to find a better mechanic..." -- Calhoun

  15. #15
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    I've had the original Maverick Speedball, The Joplin 4, the KS i950R, the Reverb (x 2), and now the KS Lev 150.

    I liked the reverb and if I could get it with the stealth mode and150mm of travel I would like it as well as the new Lev 150. Reliability has been pretty good with my Reverb. The first one failed after 6 months of hard use (internal air seal leak) but RockShox replaced the whole thing and it was going strong after another 7 months when I sold it. The Lev solves my only two minor annoyances with my Reverb: It has long enough travel to go from slammed to full pedalling extension without adjusting it in the seat collar, and the cable attaches down at the base so no cable loop movement (although that was never a big issue as far as function.... it just didn't look tidy).

    So far then, I like the Lev best. Long term reliability is still a question mark as I've only had it a couple months. The action is smooth, there's no play vertically, very little if any play side to side, it doesn't extend when you lift the bike by the seat when it's slammed, and the remote is easy to activate and easy to put in perfect position either with the odi lock-on grip integrated collar or with a separate collar.

    The only glitch I've found so far will never be a concern for you: It is slow returning when it's very cold out (below 30 deg F) and if any moisture gets in the cable housing the cable will stick/freeze and not return sometimes.

  16. #16
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    I've had my i950R for about three years with zero issue. I'm switching to the Thomson because, well, it's a Thomson. But the KS is staying with me for a while after I make the switch.

  17. #17
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    Droppers?

    Quote Originally Posted by B Gillespie View Post
    Also consider the Specialized Command Post Blacklite. Not infinitely adjustable, but much more simple and dealer serviceable. MSRP is $285, so cheaper than most. It has a little bit of set back, so weigh this into fitment. Only gripe I have is the single bolt saddle saddle rail clamp.

    As far as 100mm vs 125mm vs 150mm, I prefer 125 to retain more control of bike position via saddle.
    I have the command post and I like it. The only issue I have is mounting the remote because the 90% bend noodle gets in the way so I have it in between brake and shifter which makes the remote high and hard to hit sometimes in a quick situation but I've learned to deal with it. Also the side to side play on mine after about 6 months is about 2mm so not noticeable while riding. I am thinking I getting the lev or the Thompson.

    Has anybody heard anything about the fox D.O.S.S.?

  18. #18
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    I have had my Reverb for two years, three bikes. No problems ever. Yeah the cable is annoying but it has never been a functional problem. I wish I knew how this was pulled-off:



    I am anxiously awaiting the Thomson reviews. If it were not for that post coming out I would probably get a Lev. Not just for the fixed cable but for the 150mm travel. My only niggle about the Lev is how the cable exits the lever.

    Seeing pics like this doesn't help:
    "Mi amor Nuevo Miércoles!"

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  19. #19
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    A v-brake noodle coming out of the lever fixes that, it's what I used after seeing a pic on the interwebs. If I can remember I will snap a pic tonight when I get home and post it.
    If jackasses could fly this place would be an airport.

  20. #20
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    Just wait for the mythical Thompson blue tooth stealth dropper post... Sure you will have to carry a battery and pull your i-phone out to drop your post; but no cables. Plus with a little creativity you could drop your buddies post for him at a whim. Even better... since everybody will have smart phones out for their post there should be more riding pictures. I see a win..win..win!

    FWIW I have the Kronolog. I like the lever under the bar with a 1x9/10/11 drive-train and the fact the cable doesn't move too much, but its been warrantied twice in a year. They sent me a new post this last round. (first ride on new post this afternoon). They have tried to tweak the set up issues but the clamping jaws seem to be a good idea that doesn't work for the long term. I'll keep mine till the 2 year warranty runs out then move on. Crankbrothers customer service is solid and they have lots of practice warrantying their dropper posts.

    I have yet to have a dropper post that didn't have to go in at least once a year (had a KSI900 for a few years).

  21. #21
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    So close to pulling the trigger....I hate the thought of having to buy 2 though
    "Three balls at once...who knew?" - Cotton McKnight

  22. #22
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    Yeah, really sucks to have two Knollys. I truly feel for you.
    If jackasses could fly this place would be an airport.

  23. #23
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    Two won't guarantee up time. However....

    It is good practice to go back to a fixed post for a few weeks every 8-12 months. It makes you remember things like getting behind the seat, proper body position, how to properly endo over the bars because your post didn't drop at the push of a button because it doesn't have a button, and it lets your thumb rest after pushing a button 50 times a ride. It also is a good time to weight your bike to marvel at how light it is with out that heavy post and how uncluttered your bar is. You might even consider a front derailleur to compensate for the lack of cables for those few weeks.

    It also gives you time to look at the newer crop of posts that are incrementally better than the one you have and may or may not be more reliable.

    You can also take up hiking if nothing else works.

  24. #24
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    I wish I'd never gotten one, because it is so awesome yet such a pain at the same time, but I'll never be able to go back.

    I have a joplin 4, and I've had it repaired twice in a one year period. I just now got it back so I'll have to see how well it does.

  25. #25
    TSC
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    Quote Originally Posted by Calhoun View Post
    Seeing pics like this doesn't help:
    The cable is quite stiff so if you insist that it turns abruptly then you probably would have to do something like that. But it's not an ungodly sight if you just let it bend gradually.

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    IMO, the biggest drawback is that I want to the activation button where my front click shifter is located. (If my grip-shifter hadn't had a problem with premature deactivation--would exit the big ring at slightest touch--then it would be awesome!)
    "sounds like you need to find a better mechanic..." -- Calhoun

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