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How Does a Dropper Post Work?

How Does a Dropper Post Work

You probably have been hearing the name dropper post, but all you know is that it is really an appreciated asset among mountain bikers. A dropper seat post is an adjustment to the bike seat pole, which allows you to adjust the saddle with ease. Nevertheless, there are different types of dropper posts to suit different preferences. We will discuss this, and in the process dive into the details of the answer on; how does a dropper post work?

If you are reading this, then you probably just bought one and needs more information on how it works, or you are purposing to buy it. So, shall we get the show on the road?

How a Dropper Post Work? Let’s See!

Generally speaking, a dropper seat post behaves like your chair at the office. While sitting on it, adjusting the lever brings the chair to a lower height position. If you adjust the chair without your weight on it, then the height of the chair increases.

This is the same simple analogy behind the dropper post. If you adjust the bike seat while sitting on it, then the seat goes down. On the other hand, while standing on your pedals, you can raise the height of the bike seat.

Why is the Dropper Post Popular Among Mountain Bikers?

Unlike indoor and track biking, mountain biking terrace is quite unpredictable. You might encounter numerous hurdles on the way, which call for constant bike seat changes.

With a dropper seat post, you don’t need to get off the bike to make the seat adjustments. Actually, you don’t even need to slow. Hence, even in a competition, a dropper post will definitely contribute to a win.

The Locking Mechanism                                             

Since the dropper post facilitates different bike seat positions, then it does not come as a surprise that the bike is supported by a kind of a spring mechanism. For the saddle to remain in a totally different position every few minutes, a bike seat locking mechanism comes with dropper post.

Hence, you can confidently ride without the fear of getting a sudden drop.

Different Lever Positions

The dropper post comes with different lever position.

The first one comes fixed on the bike post, so that it lies just below the saddle. All you have to do is release one handlebar, press on it and you are good to go. The strongpoint that this type of lever holds on to is the bike design. It does not compromise your bike design, since it is kind of hidden. Besides, it will not block any part of your front area and cause you an inconvenience.

The second one is remote, so that you can place it at your point of convenience. Usually, most cyclists will place it at the handlebars. Here, you don’t even have to let go a handlebar in order to adjust the seat. Actually, this is the major advantage, as even in the roughest terrain, you will still adjust your seat without compromising your balance

Which is better between a handlebar lever and a seat lever? I wouldn’t say which one is better, since each has its fans. Either has its unique strengths and shortcomings.

Cable Routing Mechanism

There are two types of cable routing mechanisms that the dropper post presents, namely internal, and external routing mechanisms.

The internal routing cables are internally hidden. The bike frame has to be compatible with the exact dropper post, since the cables may have to drop in to the bike frame.

The best part about the internal routing cables is that they are compact. You won’t even see them, and neither can they be easily tampered with. Better still, it is safer to use these cables. With young playful kids and pets, this would be the best option for you.

Then there are the externally routed dropper post cables. These are placed outside the post, and highly conspicuous. Nevertheless, these cables are the best when it comes to maintenance. Whenever there is a situation that requires your attention, it is easy to see it and even undertake the correction measures.

Dropper Post Sizes

Just like a bike seat, shoes and other bike accessories that has customizations to suit different individuals, the dropper post comes in different sizes.

The first sizing is based on the diameter of the post. In this instance, the diameter you choose will depend on the diameter of the bike frame. It facilitates a perfect fit on the bike.

The range may start from 27.2, for the narrowest bike seat post, to 34.9, for the widest frame.

The second sizing is based on the height differences. How low do you want your seat to go, or how high do you want your seat to rise?

The major considerations that you should take into account when deciding on a perfect size of the pole include; seat tube diameter, overall length of the pole, cable routing, and also maximum/ minimum insertion length.

Wait! There are also two types of sizing you should take into account; with one, you can move the post to any size that you prefer in between the maximum and minimum sizes the seat can drop or rise to.

The other has set heights in between the extreme sizes, and you can only adjust the seat sizes to the pre-set sizes.

Hydraulic and Mechanical Dropper Posts

This section refers to the mechanism that the dropper post uses to move up and down.
With the hydraulic dropper posts, hydraulic fluid moves the post up and down.

On the contrary, the mechanical dropper post uses a protected cable to set the seat either up or down.

Either choice will depend on your personal preference.

Parting Shot

How does a dropper post work? This article takes you through the specifics of a dropper post. Now all you have to do is get it to work, simply by fixing it on your bike, and it will function as your bike seat pole.

You have all you need to get you going.

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