In our opinion, the dropper seatpost is the single most important innovation in mountain biking. It’s certainly the component we don’t want to ride without. A dropper seatpost is also the number one upgrade we recommend for new mountain bikers. Having the ability to drop your saddle can improve cornering ability, boost rider confidence, and make your time on the trail more fun.
There are dozens of different dropper seatposts on the market. Unlike a few short years ago, most dropper posts are pretty reliable these days. Like any good bicycle component, a quality dropper should function without you thinking about it. The best dropper post for your mountain bike is the one that performs reliably, with little to no maintenance, and balances performance with price.
Here’s a look at the best dropper posts currently on the market. Think we missed one? Let us know in the comments below.
The Best Dropper Post In 2020
Of all the dropper seatposts we’ve ridden the Revive has the smoothest action. The silky drop and return makes this dropper feel like a premium component, with very little side-to-side play. We’ve tested this post extensively. It’s incredibly reliable but does need a bit of quick and easy maintenance now and again. Occasionally, (and usually only after lifting the bike the saddle with the seatpost lowered, which you should avoid doing) the post will sag a few millimeters. Thankfully, Bike Yoke makes it easy to remove air trapped in the dropper’s hydraulic circuit. Resetting—or reviving—this seatpost just a matter of actuating the bleed port lever and compressing the post to allow air to escape. This can be accomplished on the trail in less than 10 seconds. The Revive comes in a wide range of lengths and diameters to fit virtually any modern mountain bike.
Price: $375-$450 (depending on length)
OneUp Components Dropper V2
As the name suggests, this is the second version of OneUp’s dropper post. The V2 is available in 120, 150, 180, and 210mm lengths and can all be shimmed down in travel by 10 or 20mm. The ability to fine-tune travel with the included travel shims, along with this post’s category-leading low stack height (shortest total length per travel size), lets rider run the longest possible dropper for their saddle height. This is a huge advantage for shorter riders who want to run 150mm or even 180mm droppers on small and medium-sized frames. What else is there to like? Well, the price is really, really good.
Price: $199-$209 (depending on length)
PNW Components Rainier V3
The PNW Component’s Rainier stands out from the crowd of dropper seatposts with a great price, short stack height, and tool-free system to adjust the amount of seatpost drop. The travel of the Rainier can be reduced by up to 30mm, in 5mm increments. If you need more adjustment than that, the Rainier is offering in versions with 120, 150, 170 and 200mm of adjustable seatpost drop.
Fox Transfer Performance 2020
The Fox Transfer sets the bar for set-and-forget performance. One of our test droppers is going on its fourth season of hard riding without the slightest amount of maintenance. It comes in the gold, Kashima-coated version that will add bling to your bike as well as a standard black version that will keep more money in your wallet. For the 2021 model year, Fox has introduced an updated version of the Transfer. We don’t have enough time on it to confirm that the new version can go the distance, but the 2020 version is still in stock at retailers at a discounted price.
Almost all dropper posts are internally-routed on modern mountain bike frames, but there’s still a demand for externally-routed droppers among riders looking to bring their older bikes up to speed. If you have an older mountain bike—or even a gravel bike—that uses a narrower, 27.2mm seapost, PNW’s Pine dropper is your best bet. It comes in versions with 90 or 120mm of travel. This externally-routed dropper has a smooth action, performs reliably, and comes with a wallet-friendly price tag.
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