Here are all the things wrong with dropper posts

by 48

Dropper posts are the best thing to happen to mountain biking since disc brakes. But a lot of them leave a lot to be desired still. Here’s our top dozen or so things that get on our nerves about some droppers.

And yes, this feature is sponsored by OneUp. One Up droppers are the best, so we’re happy to oblige with well deserved bigging-up.

Wobbly shafts

Dropper posts that exhibit an excessive amount of lateral/rotary saddle jiggle. Truth be told, you can rarely if ever actually detect the wobble when you’re riding but it’s just an off-putting thing to feel when you’re stood aside your bike moving it around. And in a practical sense, excessive slop in the shaft department results in a post that can compress/extend inconsistently (bushing bind etc).

Saddle pulls up when lifting up your bike

We’re not sure why this is as annoying as it is but droppers that extend whenever you go to pick up your bike by the saddle (from the ground or over a obstacle etc) are Officially Well Annoying.

As good as clamps get really. OneUp’s cradle doesn’t need to be fully removed with three hands! Keep the rear bolt in place and slide it out of the notch. When you reassemble your seat your angle position is preserved. It’s one of the best features of their bolt design.

Fiddly saddle rail clamp

This is a moan that applies to all seatposts really, not just droppers. Why is it seemingly so difficult to design a rail cradle that doesn’t require three hands to assemble, or needs the entire cradle disassembling just to get the saddle rails in there?

Nipple goes here please!

Cable nipple at the remote lever end

Believe it or not there are still dropper posts that have the cable nipple housed at the handlebar end of things. This makes initial setup overly faffy and then makes the post more prone to numerous complications during the ensuing use of the post.

Go squishy

Suspension seatposts are good, if you want one. A dropper post that squidges up and down a centimetre or so when you sit on it, is not good.

Vague or slow in operation

When you experience a decent dropper it affords you more control over your ride experience; being able to quickly and accurately position your saddle height ‘just so’ is a real benefit in terms of bike contro, efficiently and handling. Slow or vague droppers only ever spend their life either fully compressed or at full height. Which is a waste.

Not a rubbish remote

Rubbish remote levers

Shifter-style remotes with a rubberised thumb pad please. No other styles need apply. Certainly not those horrid old fashioned ones that lay vertically on your bars and have a V-brake metal noodle jutting out of them. Ugh.

Non-adjustable

Sometimes you need to swap a dropper post from one bike to another. Whether it’s a spare bike, demo bike, winter bike and even a whole new bike. And sometimes the dropper is too long for the other/new bike. Being able to quickly change how much travel a dropper post has can be a real ride/weekend saver!

210mm where others would be 170mm

A lot in a little

Droppers with more travel are better. Some droppers pack in more travel than others, even though the overall post length is the same. For example, OneUp can squeeze in 210mm of travel into the same length post as other brands’ 170mm droppers.

Expensive

There are some droppers that cost several hundred quid. For no worthwhile advantage. Bonkers.

Hard to service

Some droppers are dauntingly tricksy to crack open and service. Either that, or they require some tools that not a lot of home mechnicas actually own. Did you know (yep, here comes the Hard Sell) OneUp droppers are easy to service by mere mortals? Here’s the video proof…

We show how easy it is to adjust the amount of drop on offer as well as how simple as general clean and service is on a OneUp V2 post.

OneUp Dropper Post range

Let’s now go over the features of OneUp’s V2 dropper post. What makes it a good choice for a whole lot of riders.

One key thing about OneUp is the adaptability and serviceability of the posts. The fact that travel can be adjusted means that you can get the longest drop possible for your bike rather than being restricted.

The general service process is really indicative of OneUp’s ease of usability. There’s only a small number of parts required, they are all available to buy, and the servicing itself doesn’t require any tools that aren’t already in an experienced mountain biker’s toolbox.

Lengths available

90, 120, 150, 180, 210, 240

Diameters

30.9, 31.6, 34.9

You can also get 27.2 version, in 90 and 120mm travel options.

The 90mm is good for small frames, kids bikes but also comes in handy for frame designs with very interrupted seat tubes (droppers for DH bikes!)

Weight-wise, OneUp posts are decent too, with a 150mm travel V2 dropper coming in at around 480g.

More is more

Almost everyone is looking for the most travel possible. This is OneUp’s trump card.

Put simply, by running a OneUp dropper you can achieve up to 30mm more drop than you can with rival droppers. OneUp posts fit more drop into the same space (saddle rail to actuator).

As well as the things you can see externally – short stack height clamp, dinky top collar – the system inside the post takes up less room than other droppers.

For example, you can run a 230mm drop OneUp post in the same space a 200mm drop rival brand post takes up. Or, where you ‘only’ had a 160mm dropper, you can now have a 180 in there.

There aren’t really any downsides in having more drop, apart from the extra loads going through the bushings. Which is why the longest travel OneUp droppers have increased bushing overlap.

Travel adjustment

Going back to the simple 10mm increment travel adjustment. This is very handy when, for example, you can’t quite accommodate a full 210mm travel so you can quickly adjust it down to 200mm or 190mm. (it’s also just nicer looking to be able to get the collar of the dropper to sit as flush as possible to the seat tube collar!). This travel adjust flexibility also helps future-proof your dropper post purchase for future bikes that you may get.

The travel adjustment feature means that OneUp posts actually offer a total range of travel options from 70mm up to 240mm, in individual 10mm increments.

Changing the travel only takes a couple of minutes. You do it by removing or inserting thin 10mm-long brass rods into post. It’s very simple and swift to do. 

Our favourite dropper

As well as the long drop-ness and travel adjustability, OneUp droppers are just really flipping good droppers. Really nicely made. Responsive and accurate in operation on the trail. They’re also light weight for the travel on offer. There are a few cheaper posts out there but none can hold a candle to the quality, travel amount and adjustability of a OneUp.

uk.oneupcomponents.com

Free express shipping from their warehouse in Sussex.

Orange Switch 6er. Stif Squatcher. Schwalbe Magic Mary Purple Addix front. Maxxis DHR II 3C MaxxTerra rear. Coil fan. Ebikes are not evil. I have been a writer for nigh on 20 years, a photographer for 25 years and a mountain biker for 30 years. I have written countless magazine and website features and route guides for the UK mountain bike press, most notably for the esteemed and highly regarded Singletrackworld. Although I am a Lancastrian, I freely admit that West Yorkshire is my favourite place to ride. Rarely a week goes by without me riding and exploring the South Pennines.

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  • This topic has 48 replies, 43 voices, and was last updated 1 year ago by richb1.
Viewing 40 posts - 1 through 40 (of 48 total)
  • Here are all the things wrong with dropper posts
  • dangeourbrain
    Free Member

    Is number one that we can absolutely believe what dropper posts look like now?

    whatyadoinsucka
    Free Member

    reverbs, still got lower hamstring problems from a bobbing reverb, oneup has been a great replacement so far

    ossify
    Full Member

    excessive slop in the shaft department results in a post that can compress/extend inconsistently (bushing bind etc)

    I haven’t blushed so much since the article about Andi’s long purple Pole.

    brant
    Free Member

    Dropper posts don’t drop. They are an “upper” post.

    zippykona
    Full Member

    I think you’ll find proper off road mudguards are the best thing since disc brakes.

    chakaping
    Free Member

    They constantly need the collar lifted and to be fed more suspension grease, or they stop returning fully.

    Oh hang on, that’s just OneUp droppers, isn’t it?

    Onzadog
    Free Member

    Maybe it’s because 3 of our 4 dropper posts are bikeyoke revives but dropper posts seem so much better than they used to be.

    stingmered
    Full Member

    What an awful advertorial. Have I missed something? I get you need paid-for articles but that is some clumsy propaganda waffle… would rather watch a 10 sec proper advert than read that. Even as a paid subscriber.

    ossify
    Full Member

    They constantly need the collar lifted and to be fed more suspension grease, or they stop returning fully.

    Oh hang on, that’s just OneUp droppers, isn’t it?

    Dunno, my OneUp dropper is fine without that.

    (not sponsored by OneUp. This post might have waxed more fulsome is it was sponsored, hint hint)

    thisisnotaspoon
    Free Member

    Maybe it’s because 3 of our 4 dropper posts are bikeyoke revives but dropper posts seem so much better than they used to be.

    They’ve definitely improved, Reverbs and Crank Brothers (Kronolog?) posts must be the low points.

    I’d still like one with specific drops like the original Gravity Droppers though. I can guess what ~30mm drop feels like for ‘flat but twisty’ trails but half the time it never feels right and it would be nicer if it was consistent?

    My older Brand-X (badged as Canyon) has been destroyed by I assume either a bushing slipping/failing or using the wrong suspension grease as it’s worn through the anodizing and now gouging the aluminum, I don’t really care though now that they’re mostly <£100, it’s a lot of money sure, especially after only 2 years. But it’s not £300 like the reverb, and the 170mm version on the other bike works perfectly.

    Unless someone devises a dramatically better post (both functionally and user serviceable) I’ll not be spending >£100 on one again.

    VanHalen
    Full Member

    There are some droppers that cost several hundred quid. For no worthwhile advantage. Bonkers.

    yes – why would you buy a OneUp post with a lever for £289??? you can multiples of other brands posts for that.

    Gribs
    Full Member

    Dropper posts don’t drop. They are an “upper” post.

    This. Dropping a quick release post was never much of a problem and on smooth ground I could do it whilst riding along. Getting it back up required stopping and it’d never go back to exactly the right place. “Dropper” posts fixed this.

    dangeourbrain
    Free Member

    and it’d never go back to exactly the right place

    Shoe lace or similar tied so it was taught at full height to the post clamp bolt and the saddle rail was very close solution.

    yes – why would you buy a OneUp post with a lever for £289??? you can multiples of other brands posts for that.

    If the 125mm ones stacked on top of each other to give a 250 drop I’d have two, but they don’t.

    thepurist
    Full Member

    I’ve had a V1 one up for a few years and it’s been great, and was the biggest drop I could fit into the frame at the time.

    I notice the v2 would give me a smidge more drop for the same insertion depth, so I’d love to upgrade – it’s just a shame the members discounts don’t seem to include Oneup (HINT!)

    cp
    Full Member

    That ‘sponsored’ icon needs to be WAAAY more prominent.

    kayak23
    Full Member

    That’s weird.
    The actual article post by Ben is the fifth post down for me with people answering it before it… 🤔

    Anyone else?

    Rubber_Buccaneer
    Full Member

    Anyone else?

    Probably everyone and I’m prepared to bet 20p it’s because the article was updated after the first few posts had been created and the script that is used to present the posts doesn’t take into account that the time stamp used can change

    desperatebicycle
    Full Member

    ^^ Yes

    However, the biggest thing wrong with dropper posts is the price of the aftermarket levers. It’s such a **** rip off, for a simple lever that pulls a cable! And people pay it, so they keep those prices coming! Infuriates me, it does.

    scotroutes
    Full Member

    That ‘sponsored’ icon needs to be WAAAY more prominent.

    Better still, stick it in the Ads section so that paid subscribers don’t see it.

    mashr
    Full Member

    However, the biggest thing wrong with dropper posts is the price of the aftermarket levers. It’s such a **** rip off, for a simple lever that pulls a cable! And people pay it, so they keep those prices coming! Infuriates me, it does.

    Does seem to be something wrong when you’re dropper lever costs more than your shifter

    dangeourbrain
    Free Member

    Or, quite possibly, your dropper.

    no_eyed_deer
    Free Member

    those horrid old fashioned ones that lay vertically on your bars

    For those of us (or is it only me?) still running 3 x, these dropper remotes work just perfectly, thanks. In fact, I’m hoarding them now because they’re so hard to come by.

    reeksy
    Full Member

    Anyone else?

    Hmmmm… makes you think 🤔

    Del
    Full Member

    things wrong with this article:

    ‘bike contro, efficiently’

    sorry about that.

    TrailriderJim
    Free Member

    Oneup posts are similar to Brand X but their levers are better. If Oneup price matched Brand X I’d be tempted. For now, Brand X post with a Oneup lever is my setup.

    ico86
    Full Member

    My brand X dropper feels a fair bit smoother and more solid than my one up, also the brand X doesn’t make a weird crack type noise when you push the lever. None of them are deal-breakers and I went for the one up as it’s longer drop than the brand X, however it’d be nice if it felt as refined as the cheaper post.

    tmays
    Free Member

    I’m just here to sing praises for Brand-X posts

    scotroutes
    Full Member

    @tmays – when my Fox dropper become broken, and then became unfixable, I had no hesitation in buying another Brand X to complement the (badged) one on Fatbike.

    Anyways, thinking again about the advert that initiated this thread, perhaps STW should adopt a policy once adopted by the BBC; journalists shouldn’t appear in ads. It undermines our belief in their objectivity. I mean, if STW were to do a comparative review on dropper posts in a couple of months and One Up got a good write up, would you really trust it?

    mashr
    Full Member

    ico86
    Full Member
    My brand X dropper feels a fair bit smoother and more solid than my one up, also the brand X doesn’t make a weird crack type noise when you push the lever. None of them are deal-breakers and I went for the one up as it’s longer drop than the brand X, however it’d be nice if it felt as refined as the cheaper post.

    TBF, my OneUp doesn’t make a cracking sound when I push the lever. The only advantage it has over my Brand-X though is in its shorter dimensions

    timblake7
    Full Member

    …and why aren’t there more wireless options and why are they 2-4x the price!! I borrowed a friends old Magura Vyron and it’s fab!

    thisisnotaspoon
    Free Member

    However, the biggest thing wrong with dropper posts is the price of the aftermarket levers. It’s such a **** rip off, for a simple lever that pulls a cable! And people pay it, so they keep those prices coming! Infuriates me, it does.

    ZTTO and their £4 levers to the rescue.

    They’re not quite as nice as matchmaker compatible, rubber coated ones. But they’re also not £40 worse.

    Shoe lace or similar tied so it was taught at full height to the post clamp bolt and the saddle rail was very close solution.

    The same trick works to limit the extension of droppers if you really want to maximize the drop (use dynema D8 and learn to splice it though, much neater, easier to adjust, and the knots won’t stretch over time).

    andybrad
    Full Member

    to be fair i love my command post.

    dlr
    Full Member

    The Hite Rite on my 92 Breezer has never had any issues with air loss, bushing wear etc….

    steve_b77
    Free Member

    The Brand-X ones are bang on, really can’t complain at £50 for a 357x100mm one including lever on my lads bike, let along £100 for the whole £100 I paid for the new 420x120mm on on mine.

    I’m also a fan of the over the bar lever as my dual-suspension lock is under the bar, although I am seriously tempted by the Orbea 3 way Squidlock lever that does fork, shock and dropper in one tidy package – might get one when I re-cable my bike at some point over the summer.

    cokie
    Full Member

    I have a Brand X Ascent post that I’ve abused for 5 years. Ridden year round a few times a week, including those axle deep mud days with no mudguards. I’ve never serviced it or had to change cables. It just works! It’s as good now as it was when purchased despite the shaft having wear and a couple notches. I’ve got a few other droppers that have never caused me issues either, but then they see less use.

    The one thing I don’t like about any of the cable/hydraulic droppers is lever feel. I think the awkward cable routing and flimsy lever design means it’s never felt robust or particularly accurate when actuating. All my gear shifters feel great- why can’t they copy that? Would like to try the bluetooth options for feel.

    ayjaydoubleyou
    Full Member

    …and why aren’t there more wireless options and why are they 2-4x the price!! I borrowed a friends old Magura Vyron and it’s fab!

    theres a new magura imminent at Sea Otter. rumours from Taipei suggest a number of others soon to join.

    I love my AXS reverb – with the obvious downside of huge, huge price – it exceeds the one-up (and other cable operated) on:

    lever feel – its a button, rather than swinging a lever around and pulling cable when you only need a binary on-off result.

    ease of removal – for obvious reasons

    seat clamp – they made a big fuss about the oneup clamp, but the reverb one is amazing. a single t25 bolt tightens/releases the saddle. A second bolt you twist to adjust seat angle. no more of this loosen one, tighten the other, messing about with captive nuts you have to try and hold down with your finger.

    LAT
    Full Member

    the wobbliest dropper i’ve ever owned is a one up. i really don’t understand what people love about them over a brand x

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    That Orbea lever looks neat if you need the functionality.

    I’m happy with my boggo Brand-X lever, a shorter throw would be nice but I’m not about to spend daft money on fixing what isn’t broke.

    tagnut69
    Free Member

    What are the shimano levers like?

    nickfrog
    Free Member

    What are the shimano levers like?

    I have the MT500 (£20) and it’s very well engineered and ergonomically brilliant – an easy match for the also good One Up at more than twice the price.

    Talking of which it is actuating a (Brand X) Trans X adjustable 170-200mm dropper that is also as good as the One Up for…£60.

    An easy £80 to avoid all the above issues (if you’re don’t need more than 200mm).

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