What is Dropper Post & How It’s Work?

Dropper posts are lighter, more expensive, and more complex, but they provide greater pedal efficiency, safety, and make riding more enjoyable.

Dropper posts are also known as dropper seatposts.

  • Dropper-posts are seatposts that can be adjusted in height. They allow riders to adjust the height of their seat and make it more comfortable while riding.
  • These are a common feature on MTBs, and have been in existence since the 1980s.

PROS DROPPER POST

  1. Pedal efficiency: Properly heighten your seat to maximize efficiency and improve knee health. Too low saddles can cause loss of power, efficiency, and stress to the knee.
  2. Quickly drop the seat = Get the seat out of your way when riding the MTB
    • Lower center of gravity – Allows riders to adjust their center of gravity dynamically as they navigate through varying terrain/natural obstacles. This allows for quicker stopping
    • Stability – Increased stability due to dynamic center of gravity
    • Improved cornering: Riding above the bottom bracket and centered allows for better weight distribution. This makes cornering easier, and quicker.
    • Speedier descents – Better cornering and stability from the dynamic center of gravity allow for higher speeds on singletrack descents.
    • Jumping/dropping – It’s important that the seat is out of the way when you are hitting any large jumps or drops. Because the seat of a downhill bike is set very low, dropper posts are not available.
  3. Raise seat quickly
    • Instantly, you can put weight on the rear tire as well as power on the pedals from a seated position. This is after you have sat down for tight corners and fast descents.
  4. Increased confidence when riding on technical or steep terrain. – Ability to ride low and centered above the bike
  5. More fun = better riding
  6. Improve your ride flow – If you’re adjusting your seat height …., it’s time.

DROPPER POST CONS

  1. Price varies between $300 and $600 but it’s depending on the brand, model, quality, etc.
    • Maintain more components
    • It all depends on where you live, how often you ride MTB trails and whether you have a lot of them.
  2. Added weight – Appox 8-14+ additional ounces (250-400 grams)
  3. A second lever is located on the handlebars. These include brake levers, shifters, damping controls and now a dropper lever. Cables and lines need to be maintained and could get caught on trail obstacles.
    • The wireless dropper post was developed. However, they are heavier and more costly, require batteries and have a longer lag time.
  4. Installation and maintenance can be complex.
    • Cable and housing for a cable through the frame of a bicycle
    • Mounting the switch or lever
    • Connecting the cable
    • Adjust the cable pull
    • Reliability problems – Technology is still in its infancy. Reliability and mechanical issues occur more frequently than any other component of the MTB. Technology is improving however.
    • Dropper seatposts are currently unreliable and susceptible to failure.
    • The $300-$600 dropper posts are now more expensive due to an increased maintenance cost.

WHAT DOES A DROPPER SEATPOST DO?

Traditional dropper posts have an upper tube as well as a lower tube.

  • The diameter of the upper tube is smaller than that of the lower tube, making it easier to slide inside. Telescopically, the upper tube moves in relation to the lower tube.
  • The lower tube is usually fastened to the MTB’s frame seat tube with a clamp.
  • The saddle clamp is located at the top of your upper tube. This clamp attaches your saddle to the upper tubes.
  • The saddle is able to slide with the upper tubes when they slide within the lower tubes. This is the main function of the dropper post.

Dropper posts are usually either hydraulic or mechanical.

  • Mechanical – A mechanical lever attaches the best dropper post to a gear cable with the cable running through your bike frame
  • Hydraulic – Uses a hydraulic pressure differential in the post

WHY IS DROPPER POINTS SO EXPENSIVE

Dropper posts can be described as a complicated adjustable office chair.

  • Imagine your adjustable-height office chair, but now it’s lighter, smaller, more maneuverable, and can be used while you jump, land, bump, vibrate, and turn while the rider bounces around in the snow, sun, rain, or mud.

This requires some technical engineering and, obviously, it costs money.

SHOULD YOU GET A DROPPER POST?

A dropper post is more beneficial for riders who ride technical singletrack or free-ride, as well as recreational riders who want to be able adjust their seats on the fly.

A height-adjustable seatpost could be a great benefit to you.

  • You can alternate between steep climbs and short climbs while riding single-track.
  • Are you able to ride trails with natural obstacles and technical features (such as fallen logs?)?
  • Are you a rider who enjoys tight turns on trails?
  • Are you a keen MTB rider?
  • Do you adjust the height of your chair all the time?
  • Are you a recreational MTBer who is looking to increase your confidence and have more fun?
  • Are you able to spare the money for future maintenance and investment in your MTB?

Last Thought

The rider can adjust the height and position of the saddle to suit their needs while on a top mountain bikes.

  • Sitting higher = Maximum pedal efficiency and power on flat terrain
  • Fully lowered = No seat in the Way = Great maneuverability from the lower center of gravity
  • The middle position allows for more power and traction on singletrack terrain.

The main problems are the cost, reliability and extra maintenance.

Personally, I love the dropper post and can’t imagine riding technical single-track without it.

You can also read : Tips for Finding Your Ideal Haro Mountain Bike

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