We’ve already become fans of Wolf Tooth Components’ brilliant ReMote dropper post lever, though it’s now available in a kit to convert a RockShox Reverb dropper post too. To test how ‘easy’ it is to turn a hydraulically-activated dropper post into a cable-actuated one, we put a ReMote Sustain kit into Barney Marsh’ enormous, but dextrous hands. Take it from here Barney!
I can’t say I’ve ever been overly bothered by the old RockShox push button Reverb post activator. It simply sits there on your bars like a benign wart, it is relentlessly smooth to use, even in inclement weather, and it works with a front mech.
But at the same time, it’s ugly, it’s hydraulic so it can be a monumental pain to bleed, and in these modern one-by times, it’s not really necessary for anything to work with two shifters any more in a growing majority of cases.
Indeed, Rockshox has itself updated the Reverb with a 1x-specific hydraulic paddle model, which is lovely to use, and ergonomic and all those other things. Of course, sticking with RockShox’s USP of hydraulic actuation as it does, it’s beautifully weatherproof, smooth and all of those other things. But it’s still a pain to bleed, set up and it’s a little bulky (although to be fair that bulk is pretty well hidden).
While there are plenty of aftermarket lever options for other posts, the hydraulic nature of the Reverb has put plenty of companies off making one. Alongside BikeYoke and its DeHy kit, Wolf Tooth Components is the only other brand to attempt such a task (that we’re aware of).
Singletrack’s own Australian Tigger, Wil, reviewed the Wolftooth ReMote before. If you can’t be arsed to click through to the link, here’s a quick precis: he rather liked it – “it’s the best there is” he says. And considering he’s coming from a place of relentless cheeriness and frankly sickening optimism, that’s praise indeed. But it’s not hard to see why. Available for a range of droppers, ball bearing-ed, impeccably designed and (crucial, this) wonderfully comfy to use, it’s the doyen of aftermarket post levers. And now it’s available for Reverb posts too, in the form of the ReMote Sustain (get the musical pun, there).
What is this trickery? Is it hydraulic, then? Well, no. It turns your Reverb (it’s available for A2 and B-flavoured stealth posts) into a cable activated dropper, by replacing some gubbins at the bottom of your post with a couple of disconcertingly simple bits – one alloy and one plastic, linking them up to a cable inner and outer and hoiking the whole lot over to your bars, where a normal ReMote lever awaits.
I’m not going to talk over much about the lever itself. Suffice it to say it’s a beautifully designed, ball-raced slice of elegance with a marvellous feel at the lever. Wil covered it in much more detail in his review.
So, the installation – a word of warning here, with another word of soothing, comforting warmth, like Ovaltine and a nice fluffy blanket: you do need to partially disassemble your dropper post. That’s the warning out of the way, and here’s the nice bit – it takes about fifteen minutes, and my hamster could probably do it if I asked nicely. And I had a hamster.
There’s a nice easy video on the Wolftooth site to follow, presented by the ever fragrant and delicious Marc Basiliere. In a nutshell, all you need to do is remove the air from the fork, pop off the outer sleeve, unscrew the hose/connectamajig and screw on the new attachment. Reassemble and prime, and that’s it.
Once it’s assembled, triggering the cable serves to push a couple of plastic prongs onto a surface that was previously facing the hydraulic fluid. Happily, the fluid inside the post’s cartridge itself is completely separate.
Coincidentally, if you’re running a connectamajig, this new arrangement can reduce the overall length of the post, which is handy if your seat post contains any interesting kinks to accommodate the suspension system, water bottles or what have you.
To date there has been no issue whatsoever with fluid leakage from the post – in the few months I’ve been running the post everything has remained totally dry. The cable is also super easy to disconnect from the post should you need to swap the post, do some maintenance or.. um.. anything else you might want to drop the post out for. I dunno – store sausages down the seat tube?
Actually, given how simple it is to get this thing up and running, it’s hard to see why RockShox is bothering with hydraulics for lever actuation in the first place. Although I have to admit to not weighing the two different systems (I’m just not weight-weenie enough) it is hard to imagine it’s any heavier, it’s a cinch to set up, the lever activation is dreamy and it works like a charm. Plus, a cable isn’t particularly concerned whether you’re riding in sub-zero conditions.
The only potential downside is that it’s tricky to adjust the lever to change the rate of post return. This has never been a problem for me, and the Reverb has never spanked me on the arse like the profoundly bondage-themed Specialized Command posts of the past. It isn’t cheaper, though. If you wanted to upgrade your old lever to a new RockShox one it’ll set you back £89, so a hair cheaper than the Sustain.
So is it worth it? The Sustain is certainly a worthy upgrade to the old pushbutton lever Reverbs, then – although if you’ve already got a paddle shifter on your Reverb then there’s little point in changing over unless you’re sick to death of bleeding hydraulic fluid. But there are plenty of people out there like that – and if you’re looking to upgrade, it’s a genuinely tough call whether to plump for the £89 Rockshox 1x paddle or a Wolf Tooth lever. For my money, the Wolf Tooth just clinches it.
|Brand:||Wolf Tooth Components|
|From:||Sigma Sports, sigmasports.com|
|Price:||£90 - £100|
|Tested:||by Barney Marsh for 3 months|