Seven exciting dropper posts from Eurobike 2016

New offerings from KS, Ritchey, e*thirteen, Shimano PRO, and X-Fusion

Components Eurobike

Eurobike Mtbr

Zzzzzitt, zzzzzitt (not thunk, thunk) is the sound of the new KS LEV Circuit electric and wireless dropper post. Depending on who you ask it may or may not represent the future of getting your saddle out of the way on rowdy descents. The reason for the qualifier is simply this: The trend in droppers appears headed in two directions — high tech or simple tech. Read on to find out which manufactures are choosing which route and why.

KS LEV Circuit
Could the KS LEV Circuit spell the end of PITA dropper post routing headaches.

Could the KS LEV Circuit spell the end of PITA dropper post routing headaches?

Though not the first to bring wireless tech to the dropper post arena, KS looks to have the best option to date. The new LEV Circuit uses Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity to alert the post when it’s time to rise or fall. The obvious beauty of this system is the end of tedious cable routing and exposed housing.

The Southpaw remote is more button than lever, but it has a nice tactile feel.

The Southpaw remote is more button than lever, but it has a nice tactile feel.

The post will come in three travel sizes: 100mm, 125mm, and 150mm, and two diameters 30.9 and 31.6. Exact pricing is not set yet, but a KS staffer said it would be between $500 and $600 with availability set for spring 2017. Claimed weight for a 150m 30.9 post is 605 grams. For comparison sake, the same size KS LEV Integra comes in at 510 grams.

The actuator motor is housed in an alloy waterproof case that sits just behind the seat collar.

The actuator motor is housed in an alloy waterproof case that sits just behind the seat collar.

Pairing is done at the factory so install requires nothing more than mounting the remote and saddle, dropping the post into the frame, and rolling out. The whole system is run by a actuator motor that is housed in an alloy waterproof case that sits just behind the seat collar. Lag time between lever input and action is indiscernible based on a quick show floor test. Internals are the same as standard posts.

The Southpaw remote is more button than lever, but it has a nice tactile feel. A quick tap raises the saddle incrementally. Hold it down and it goes all the way up to the climbing position. Lowering is the same, though the saddle must also be weighted just as with standard droppers.

The system is powered by a lithium battery that’s claimed to be good for 600 cycles before the need for recharge. Charging requires that you remove the post from the bike, as the micro-USB port and battery are at the bottom. KS is also keeping open the idea of running off a Shimano Di2 battery via a spare eTube port, which would allow you to eliminate the dropper post battery. The Good: No routing headaches. The Bad: That price…

KS LEV Ci
Could this be the post that breaks down the door of cross-country racing?

Could this be the dropper post that breaks down the door of cross-country racing?

KS is also taking aim at weight conscious riders with its LEV Ci, which features a carbon fiber mast, head clamp, and remote lever. Travel options are 65mm, 100mm, 125mm, 150mm, and 175mm. Claimed weight is roughly 100 grams less than the comparable non-carbon model, with the 30.9 150mm LEV Ci coming in at 420 grams. Pricing will also be in the $500 to $600 range. The Good: So light. The Bad: That price…

e*thirteen TRS+
e*thirteen opted for an old school cable-and-spring design instead of the cartridges and hydraulics that presently dominate the market.

e*thirteen opted for an old school cable-and-spring design instead of the cartridges and hydraulics that presently dominate the market.

California’s e*thirteen took the opposite approach with its new TRS+ dropper post, choosing the route of simplicity in an effort to increase affordability, reliability, and serviceability. That means an old school cable and spring design instead of the cartridges and hydraulics that presently dominate the market.

The actuation lever has a grippy surface for better tactile feel on the trail.

The actuation lever has a grippy surface for better tactile feel on the trail.

For now the non-infinite adjust post will only come in an 150mm travel option, which has four stops: up, down, 110mm and 75mm. The lever is a paddle style with a recessed logo with grip tape for better feel. There is also clocking and barrel adjustment. Price is $299. The Good: Simple and reasonably affordable. The Bad: Not infinitely adjustable.

Continue to page 2 to learn about dropper posts from Shimano PRO, Ritchey, X-Fusion, and Crankbrothers »

About the author: Jason Sumner

An avid cyclist, Jason Sumner has been writing about two-wheeled pursuits of all kinds since 1999. He’s covered the Tour de France, the Olympic Games, and dozens of other international cycling events. He also likes to throw himself into the fray, penning first-person accounts of cycling adventures all over the globe. Sumner, who joined the RoadBikeReview.com / Mtbr.com staff in 2013, has also done extensive gear testing and is the author of the cycling guide book "75 Classic Rides: Colorado." When not writing or riding, the native Coloradoan can be found enjoying time with his wife Lisa and daughter Cora.


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