Why use a dropper seatpost on your mountain bike?

Why should you use a dropper seatpost?

Why use a dropper seatpost on your mountain bike?

Mountain bikers have traditionally been stuck with a bit of a dilemma: set the saddle high enough to provide proper pedaling efficiency, and lose a ton of descending confidence, or set the post low enough to allow for rad jumps, but then be relegated to standing for all extended pedaling sections.  Alas- the dropper seat post was invented!  Quickly and easily raise and lower your saddle from full height pedaling to low height aggressiveness.

I’ve been using the PNW Bachelor 170 post on my Ripmo since February. I’ve been stoked on it!  I’ve used quite a few brands over the years, including the Fox Transfer post (really nice as well!), the Rock Shox Reverb, KS LEV, and some older posts that aren’t even worth mentioning.  PNW Components are also available on Amazon as well as Jenson.

Prior to mounting up the PNW post, I did a little Googling to get an idea if they’d cut the mustard.  Sure enough, I found a glowing review on Pinkbike, written by industry idol Vernon Felton.  This appeased any worries, and when the posts arrived, they sure looked nice!  The light lever action really separates the PNW post from the other units I’ve tried.

I’ve found that bikes with a steeper seat tube angle really benefit from a longer drop.  You might excited yell “170mm drop, isn’t that ridiculous?!” And to that, I would have to point out that the 170 drop on a steep seat angle bike (~76°) like the Ripmo feels similar to say a 150 drop on a more traditional ~73° bike.

Furthermore, once a rider gets used to the extra space allowed by the further drop, there are minimal disadvantages to running the seat that low- as long as the trails being ridden necessitate plenty of drop!  Here in the PNW we have plenty of crazy steep 30% grade, fall line style trails, and on these, I LOVE that deeper drop.  However, out in the flatlands of the American heartland, that much drop really isn’t necessary- and it can be a waste of energy to lower the seat that far down.  For example, at the Alafia and Santos trailheads in Florida, I never once was bummed on the 125mm drop post I had been running on my Ripley LS.

What dropper posts have ya’ll tried?  How did it transform your riding?  Let me know if the comments below!

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