currently using a thomson elite 31.6 post on my chinese 29er frame, considering swapping to a carbon post, like a Niner rdo post to help with comfort on longer races, over 8hrs, as i still prefer a hardtail, but i do suffer after many hours in the saddle, might be down to using a selle italia slr saddle, but the concept of these posts sounds good, just not sure whether is marketing BS or not. anyone have any real world advice?
Fancy shock absorbing carbon posts, worth it?
I've a canyon VCLS (the older conventional one, not the even newer one with 2 parts) post on my road bike, it certainly feels nicer than the alloy one it replaced, but it is designed for flex a lot even compared to other carbon posts.
On an MTB I'm less convinced, it might have a marginal effect, but I don't think it'd be enough to make a difference. Especialy as my MTB saddle is usualy just the cast off of the road bike that was uncomfortable to sit on for long periods.
What diameter? I find my 27.2 carbon post is much more comfortable than the standard alloy with at least 0.5 cm of fore and aft travel. Larger diameters may have less effect as rigidity increases with diameter.
cannot see moving from Thomson 31.6mm to any carbon fibre 31.6mm post would make much difference on a mountain bike
on a road or mountain bike using the smaller diameter 27.2mm seat tube, the post would make a bigger difference. there is a reason the big brands use the smaller diameter 27.2mm post on their hardtails (whilst retaining 30.9mm or 31.6mm for their suspension frames) and that reason is comfort
if you are talking about the differences in comfort on a 27.2mm road frame between difference choices of seatpost, I can speak with experience.
The Thomson Elite will be harsh compared to a carbon-tubed seatpost with bonded aluminium-alloy head/clamp, which in turn will feel harsh compared to a full carbon S-Works or Easton carbon seatpost, which in turn will feel harsh compared to a Specialized CG-R (Cobbler Gobbler) Roubaix-style carbon post which has a suspension damping element designed into the CF post head
27.2mm posts of any material always feel more comfortable than larger diameter posts because of the seat tube itself, combined with the smaller diameter and more flexible seat post in that size
i did not notice any difference using mine in a SS or a cheapo alloy one - i even swapped saddles to see if i could tell.
can you not borrow one from someone to test?
If you do decide to go for a change of seatpost to see if it makes any difference then the CF Cannondale Save ones from a Cannondale Flash get good reviews and often pop up second hand (think they are quite pricey new). They seem to get the better reviews of the flexi CF seatposts although some people seem to say the movement actually annoys them more than it helps with any cushioning!
It's as much the damping as the flex, Ti will spring about a lot but won't damp so springs bsck just as hard. carbon fibre (or rather the plastic its bonded in) damps a lot more, the canyon (rather geologicaly appropriately) has bassalt fibres which really damp so the post can be made really flexy without being springy/wobbly.
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