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Thread: dropper

  1. #1
    eri
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    dropper

    I've been privileged to see pro xc racers do amazing stuff without droppers (when they lap me in races) so the problem is my own ineptitude. What those guys manage is simply incredible, I can get my head around their willingness to ride with a quad behind the seatpost.

    Now 6 months on hardtail singlespeed. Certainly has made me a better rider but I'm still not able to ride the steepest stuff without dropping my seat. Just can't be ok with my nards in danger. It meant 4-8 seat height adjustments per ride, and even then the seat is always both too high and too low, it got old and I didn't like all the stopping.

    Anyhoo - I love the bike more than ever so ready to take the relationship to the next level.

    Lurking for a while this weekend I finally came across a compatible used dropper in my area, a 100mm command post, 31.6, $100. I have a command post on my other bike and its held up well + I like its simplicity.

    I had to go with 100mm because seat tube doesn't leave room for more drop, but I already know 100mm is plenty to let me 'safely' get behind the seat. I'm feeling lucky my raijin is a prototype with larger seat tube diameter!

    Adds 280grams to bike and the weight feels high so when extended it takes away from bikes effortless nimble feelings, but it is what it is. Weight rises from just under 23# to 23.5#.

    I'm still trying to figure out where to keep the trigger. The housing it came with is a bit short. I don't really care at this point because however bad it is I still can do it while riding.

    dropper-dropper546.jpg

    dropper-bikewithdropper_smaller.jpg

    Funny that I really don't care about getting back on my fs geared bike. My teeth and lungs seem to always want more time on the ss.
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  2. #2
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    We used to ride all sorts of things without a dropper, bigger tires, slacker geo....but these things also make things more enjoyable IMHO.

  3. #3
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    The majority of the weight in a dropper is down in the seat tube, so it shouldn't feel any different weight wise whether dropped, or extended. The only difference when extended is the weight of the saddle on top. My dropper weighs more than twice that, and I would never give it up.

  4. #4
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    I go faster with a dropper. At the same time the trails I'm riding have all been ridden w/o one. It adds so much body suspension. Almost necessary on a fully rigid.

  5. #5
    Always in the wrong gear
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    I posted a long time ago in another thread here that "I'd give up suspension before I give up a dropper"
    Then I bought an SS with a rigid post, and while shopping for the post I just rode the bike....I never got around to mounting a dropper. And I still ended up giving up suspension (at least on the rear-I go back and forth on the front)
    dropper-img_0244.jpg

    I still think about it every so often, it's just not high on my priority list.

    Totally off-topic: I have that same scale, but mine's black
    Donít modify the trail to match your skills, modify your skills to match the trails.

  6. #6
    eri
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    Quote Originally Posted by HPIguy View Post
    The majority of the weight in a dropper is down in the seat tube, so it shouldn't feel any different weight wise whether dropped, or extended. The only difference when extended is the weight of the saddle on top. My dropper weighs more than twice that, and I would never give it up.
    Well, first time with the dropper extended I can definitely feel the new weight. The moment is reduced when the seat is down. With post extended the bike is less snappy than before.

    Quote Originally Posted by ARandomBiker View Post
    I posted a long time ago in another thread here that "I'd give up suspension before I give up a dropper"
    Then I bought an SS with a rigid post, and while shopping for the post I just rode the bike....I never got around to mounting a dropper.
    I wanted to be able to say that - I expected I'd get used to it and I feel shame hanging weighty ugly complex crap off my beautiful simple bike, but so it goes.

    The really scary bits, the main reason I went for the dropper is for when I mess up it can be so difficult to avoid getting hit by the seat. I've been nearly bucked a few times at speed when crossing larger than expected drainage berms. An unintentional stoppie at speed has a way of clarifying ones priorities.

    The other case is for exactly what you post above, the bike wants rotate under me but the seat in the way means I need to get all extended and then I've been gutted or 'narded a few times by the seat when I reach the flat.

    I don't quite see how but the fast riders seem to avoid the issue by staying flat and going airborne, or having a leg behind the post, but for me those acts are still indistinguishable from magic.

    Lovely shot. You look to have freakishly long arms.
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  7. #7
    Always in the wrong gear
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    I think my arms look long because my shirt has ridden up and makes my torso look short. Based on the measurements/calcs from my road bike fitting, my arms are pretty average, and if anything I'm long torso'ed.

    I think part of my ability to get back and forth over the seat is two-fold:
    1) I chose a pretty narrow saddle with rounded tail corners(Ergon SM3), so I don't get hung up. It's a comfortable saddle, but saddles don't matter on an SS like they do on most bikes since most don't sit for extended periods of time.
    2) being an SS, and spending most of my time standing, I had no problems lowering the saddle 'permanently' to about as low as I could get away with. This technique is likely to draw a little heat and ridicule from some, but I found that even when I had it positioned at "proper height" be it roadie max extension, or a fraction lower at MTB standard, it didn't keep me sitting any longer up the climb. I still stand and mash really early, regardless of fitness, grade, fatigue, or terrain.

    For the TL;DR- I run a narrow saddle set as low as I can and still pedal reasonably, so getting the saddle way down with a dropper is less important than on a geared FS.

    Edit: OP- just because you got one don't let anyone shame you. If I found a good reliable one for $100 like you did, I'd probably seriously consider it, even with the above info about not missing one.

    MTBR member "TeamDicky" has been running a dropper on a rigid SS for a long time and thinks it's among the best pieces of gear he has. He'll likely post in this thread if he sees it. I know he's commented in a "drooper" (as he calls it) in other threads.
    Donít modify the trail to match your skills, modify your skills to match the trails.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ARandomBiker View Post

    MTBR member "TeamDicky" has been running a dropper on a rigid SS for a long time and thinks it's among the best pieces of gear he has. He'll likely post in this thread if he sees it. I know he's commented in a "drooper" (as he calls it) in other threads.
    Had to search through the archives, but it looks like I swapped over to a drooper post in 2013. I did try one winter going back to a high post early on in the experience... and decided that I don't want to ride MTB with no drooper ever again.

    I didn't have a great experience with the Command Post, but mostly because I didn't like the three position thing... or the remote. Fortunately, there are loads of aftermarket levers out there now.

    Sure, I don't "need" it. Sure, I mighta been riding all kinds of gnar in Pisgah, at the Trans Rockies, BC Bike Race, Breck Epic, Trans-Sylvania Epic, etc without it... but why bother?

    I'm ABCD from here on out (Always Be Constantly Drooping).

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  9. #9
    Oaktown Honkey on Strava
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    Yeah, I rode tons of gnarly rocky downhill sections in the 80's with my seat in my chest, balls scraping on my rear Farmer John. It can be done. I am a House Painter, if I get hurt and miss work, its $45 an hour that I am not getting paid. Dropper Post is more important than having a wheel, in other words, Im not riding without one anymore. Health insurance for me is low monthly with $2,500 deductible. So if I screw up and get hurt im out $2,500 right out of the chute. Plus, add to that the price of a Dropper Post before I would ride again. If you make $50,000 a year as a racer, by all means, ride a super light bike. Im into comfort and sensibility.

  10. #10
    eri
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    Five rides on the dropper. Mostly I ride to climb but man the flow descents are more fun now. So easy and natural to pivot frame into corners and weight the rear wheel on exit. Nothing steep yet. Just grooving and staying neutral I'm seeing strava personal bests on rides I've done more than 50 times. Raijin is a different bike. Experiment a success - No regrets.
    the truth is always a gift because it offers the recipient of that information the chance to change the outcome - Grace Choi

  11. #11
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    I've had a checkered past with dropper posts...

    -Got a bike back in 2013 with a Command Post on it and promptly sold the post because I didn't like it (and wanted beer money)
    -Bought a KS a year later and really didn't use it enough to justify the weight and maintenance
    -Built up a new SS bike with a Thomson dropper for endurance racing last year and I started to see the benefits after using it more.
    -Added a dropper to my FS bike last week because I "needed" it

    Now 3 of my 4 bikes have a dropper, including a rigid setup. Not necessary but overall worth the weight penalty. Well...maybe necessary in hour 22 of a 24 hour solo when my lines are getting really sloppy.

  12. #12
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    Well my reverb is dead again.... Riding a fixed seat post because the reverb just doesn't want to work. It gets rebuit, bleed, rebuilt again and it still breaks after a ride or two. Wish I had a better solution or reason why it happens. I miss it while riding the chunk.

  13. #13
    Always in the wrong gear
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    Back when I had a dropper (on the now sold FS bike) I used a cheap Gravity knock-off TMARS mechanical dropper.

    It was absolutely HIDEOUS, and only had 3 positions, but it did *exactly* what I wanted a dropper to do: It stayed down when I slammed it. It stayed up when I raised it, and it never once broke or gave me trouble. It wasn't even any heavier than a Reverb.
    I re-lubed the spring and gave it a new remote cable after 2 years un-touched because I felt like I should do *something* to it. It took 20 minutes to clean and regrease the spring and do the cable and didn't feel any different afterwards.

    It seems ludicrous to stick that junk post in a beautiful boutique steel frame with pretty much carbon everything else, but if I ever decide to "droop" I'd probably go with the TMARS, aesthetics be damned.
    Donít modify the trail to match your skills, modify your skills to match the trails.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by ARandomBiker View Post
    Back when I had a dropper (on the now sold FS bike) I used a cheap Gravity knock-off TMARS mechanical dropper.

    It was absolutely HIDEOUS, and only had 3 positions, but it did *exactly* what I wanted a dropper to do: It stayed down when I slammed it. It stayed up when I raised it, and it never once broke or gave me trouble. It wasn't even any heavier than a Reverb.
    I re-lubed the spring and gave it a new remote cable after 2 years un-touched because I felt like I should do *something* to it. It took 20 minutes to clean and regrease the spring and do the cable and didn't feel any different afterwards.

    It seems ludicrous to stick that junk post in a beautiful boutique steel frame with pretty much carbon everything else, but if I ever decide to "droop" I'd probably go with the TMARS, aesthetics be damned.
    I have a TMARS sitting in a bin right now that I used to have on my Pugsley.....I think I may have to put it on my SS. Because I have a dropper on my FS bike, I just don't think I'll ever get used to riding without it to the point that I can have as much fun with the seat extended.

  15. #15
    Just A Mountain Biker.
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    I would like to have one on my SS, except I want an under saddle lever not a remote. I know, I'm in the minority. GD is the only company that seems to still make one, but it's Gravity Dropper and it looks like a Gravity Dropper.
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  16. #16
    Always in the wrong gear
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    Quote Originally Posted by blaklabl View Post
    I would like to have one on my SS, except I want an under saddle lever not a remote. I know, I'm in the minority. GD is the only company that seems to still make one, but it's Gravity Dropper and it looks like a Gravity Dropper.

    I'm too lazy to google it, but IIRC, KS does.
    Donít modify the trail to match your skills, modify your skills to match the trails.

  17. #17
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    Cool, I'll check it out!


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  18. #18
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    I also saw some droppers that were fitted to Tour de France backup bikes that had a cable loop coming directly from the post as an alternative to a bar mounted lever or a lever under the saddle. Looked like something you could rig up with any cable actuated seatpost.

  19. #19
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    Sorry double post

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by blaklabl View Post
    I would like to have one on my SS, except I want an under saddle lever not a remote. I know, I'm in the minority. GD is the only company that seems to still make one, but it's Gravity Dropper and it looks like a Gravity Dropper.
    I think most cable operated that do not have hidden routing (ie external routing up to the lever) can be operated manually with your fingers. Case in point, I have a PNW drooper but not the remote lever and alls I have to do is reach down between my legs under the saddle and pinch the lever to operate it. Works just fine. Although I do want to get a remote lever sometime because rougher sections of trail mean I can't always take my hand off the bars when I need to.

  21. #21
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    #droppersbeforederailleurs dude! But for real, I love having a drooper post on my singlespeed. I will not ever go back to regguler posts willingly. My singlespeed is my only mountain bike and it is rigid. The drooper makes it SO much more capable going downhill, whether technical or smooth and flowy, not to mention way more fun! I can get my weight even further back than usual, so it really relieves my hands and arms and makes the hit way easier (and faster) to take when the going gets rough, washboardy, or rocky.

    I'm running a 27.2 PNW Rainier drooper on my bike. Meant to be run on CX bikes, it's a bit less travel than normal full size mtb droppers, but it plenty enough for me. Never ever wanted for more. Usually run it about halfway, unless the trail gets super gnarly.

    Happy trails dude! Keep on with the drop, don't stop till you get enough!

  22. #22
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    After riding my Unit with a rigid Thomson post for 6 months and the Chameleon with a Command Post, I took the Unit down a trail I cruise down reasonably comfortably while drooped on the Chameleon. As Jeremy Clarkson would say, "some poo did come out". My old TMARS dropper is going back on the Unit.

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