Crank Brothers Kronolog Seatpost Revealed

Components Pro Reviews

We had a chance to do some great rides with the new Crank Brothers Kronolog dropping post. This post is the latest entry in this important and competitive category of Dropping or Height Adjustable Seatposts.

Here’s a quick video reveal we shot on location at the San Juan Trail in Southern California:

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The vital specs on the Kronolog are:

Msrp: $300

Weight:  465g + 28g (30.9mm + remote*), 477g + 28g (31.6mm + remote*)

Travel: 125mm / 5in

Adjustment type: standard mechanical shift cable

Diameters: 30.9mm and 31.6mm

Warranty : 2 years with proper maintenance

After a few rides, this is what Mtbr thinks of the Kronolog

Strengths:

  • Smooth lever action with light lever force required
  • Up and down action is very smooth and consistent with minimal effort and stiction.
  • No side to side play at the saddle
  • There are unlimited height positions between zero and five inches
  • Seatpost raises up fast but slows down in the last inch of travel to prevent harming the rider
  • Saddle is locked when lowered so there is no creeping up behavior and the bike can be lifted up with the saddle.
  • Cable routing is clean with no movement in the cable when seatpost is lowered.
  • Cable routing can go in front or behind the seapost.
  • Seatpost clamp is no offset and is consistent with the norm with all-mountain bikes
  • Fatigue tested to the highest standards
  • Maximum travel can be reduced with internal shims

Weaknesses:

  • Minimum exposed seatpost height is high at 5 inches + 2 inches to allow the rider to get the full 5 inches of  adjustability.  As a workaround, the max height of the post can be reduced with internal shims.
  • There is no local lever option available
  • No 27.2 mm size avaialble yet.

Bottom line:

The most important aspect of a dropping post is smooth action and ease of use. It has to be really easy and consistent to use for it to be an effective tool in our rides since we often need it on those ‘oh snap’ moments. The more intuitive and hassle-free it is, the more the rider is likely to use the dropping post. The Kronolog lever is intuitive and easy to activate and the seatpost goes up and down without much drama.  The action seems really precise and smooth so we think this will become a great ally for not only descenders but also cross country riders.  Heck, I really think my kid and my dad would enjoy biking much more if they had this tool .

We may very well have a contender here in this coveted and growing category. It’s all a question of durability and reliability now. Crank Brothers has learned a ton from their  experience with the Joplin and they’ve taken every  measure to improve and stress test the Kronolog.  It’s all up the harsh world of real-world consumer testing now. From what we’ve seen and tested so far, this looks like a winner.

 

First Impressions by Andy Lightle:

Last week I was lucky enough to test out the new Kronolog adjustable seatpost by Crank Brothers. Lets talk about the seatpost itself. Its made of aluminum, 405mm long, has 5 inches of travel (can be set up for less,) comes in 30.9mm and 31.6mm (soon 27.2mm,) comes in red/black and black/black. The warranty is a 2 full years and the msrp is $300.

A little history about my riding style… I am a cross country rider who enjoys the steeps of Laguna Beach as well as the Santa Ana Mountains here in Southern California. I have been a traditionalist with my riding style as I have NEVER ridden on an adjustable seatpost. I have always been wary of dropping posts because of complexity and reliability issues  of existing system.

I have always had concerns about adjustable seatposts over the years. I continually hear about the seat getting play in it over time. What if the seatpost fails and my seat gets stuck in the lower position? And finally I donʼt like the look of the cable hanging down the seatpost and how it flops out when the seat is lowered.

Well it seems Crank Brothers has taken a strong look into these issues and addressed them.

Let’s start with the lever. The clamp has a hinge on it so there is no need to take off the shifter, brake lever or the grips; you simply put it on. The bolt can be tightened without having to re-adjust the shifter as well since the bolt is position out of the way. The thumb lever itself can be placed in a natural position and feels like a shifter. The lever is also really easy to push on. I understand some of the seatposts out there need quite a bit of force to activate.

The seat clamping mechanism seems to be bomber too. Crank Brothers took the extra step and the Kronolog passes even the CEN standards of Europe. I understand this is the only adjustable seatpost to have ever passed. I watched a video of this machine forcing down (I believe 270lbs) on the nose of the saddle 100,000 times. Not only did the Kronolog pass the test, it passed it 2.7 times the European fatigue standard. The saddle was still on there tight with minimal play

What about failure and the post getting stuck in the down position? If, for some reason the rider were to take a big fall and rip out the cable for the seatpost, the Kronolog is still adjustable. Simply open the cover on the post and unlock and unlock the post manually. How simple is that?

Crank Brothers put the locking mechanism of the Kronolog on the lower end of the seatpost. It sits right above the seat tube of the frame. I see two advantages of this. One, I donʼt have to see the cable climbing up the seatpost and two, when the seat is lowered, the cable doesnʼt flop around. While there is less than a centimeter of play in the cable, it is unnoticeable and virtually unseen.

As I mentioned before I am a traditionalist when it comes to my riding. I haven’t converted over to the Dropping Seatpost  camp because of complexity, reliability and weight of previous systems. But experiencing  the simplicity and smoothness of the Kronolog has me itching to try this seatpost  on my rig for a long term test. This may be the post that converts an XC hardtail 29er rider like myself.

 

Here’s a couple informational videos by Crank Brothers featuring Hans Rey.

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About the author: Francis Cebedo

The founder of mtbr and roadbikereview, Francis Cebedo believes that every cyclist has a lot to teach and a lot to learn. "Our websites are communal hubs for sharing cycling experiences, trading adventure stories, and passing along product information and opinions." Francis' favorite bike is the last bike he rode, whether it's a dirt jumper, singlespeed, trail bike, lugged commuter or ultralight carbon road steed. Indeed, Francis loves cycling in all its forms and is happiest when infecting others with that same passion. Francis also believes that IPA will save America.


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  • aaron says:

    Ok it looks great. When is it available to consumers?

  • Francis says:

    It is available today! It has been shipping out to distributors and retailers since last week so there should be some out there. We think supply won’t be able to keep up so pre-order or backorder it.

  • martinizer says:

    What saddle is that on Rey’s bike?

  • Francis says:

    It is a german saddle. Not really distributed in the US yet. He loves it!!

  • Dirk says:

    Will there be an I-beam option?

  • ragetty says:

    has it been ‘mud tested’?

  • Francis says:

    >> Will there be an I-beam option?

    No I-beam. Crank Brothers saddles and posts are not participating in that standard.

  • Francis says:

    >>has it been ‘mud tested’?

    Yes, according to them. Two seals on top keep the contaminants out. Two norglide bushings keep it smooth.

    Time will tell since there’s not a ton of mud in Socal.

  • Bicyclewrench says:

    Maybe this one will last more than two rides before needing overhauled. Barring that maybe there will be less attitude when I call about repairing an $250 seat post with two rides on it…..

  • Joe says:

    Please make this in a 27.2….. Pleeeeeease!!!

  • Rodney says:

    Interesting, they ditched the hydraulic design they bought from Maverick and now went for the mechanical action, very similar to the Gravity Dropper.

  • AH says:

    One of the concerns I have in my application is the lack of rear offset. My bike already feels a little on the short side with an offset post and this would exacerbate it. Nothing inherently wrong with the post, just might not work for me. I did find it curious to see that this is a “positive” while seeing that the seat is mounted as far back as it can go (perhaps seeking a little rear offset?).

  • Francis says:

    >>Interesting, they ditched the hydraulic design they bought from Maverick and now went for the mechanical action, very similar to the Gravity Dropper.

    Basically, with Maverick, Crank Brothers learned ‘what not to do.’ They benefited from the vast array of problems and user feedback to understand what can go wrong.

    Then they ditched the old design and product name and started with a clean slate.

  • Afshin says:

    if you need to install the shim for height adjustment forget it. out of group 4 out of five who got it had a hell of a time installing the shims. the only one w/o a problem is 6’2″ who did not need a shim. will call CB monday to see what they can do. stay tuned.

  • Paul says:

    Gravity dropper has been and stil is the best. Everyone now copies the GD design. Hilarious!

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