MTBBritain Home

Routes  Tips  Features  Video  New  Links  Letters  Editor  Search  Pictures  Reviews  FAQ  Forum          

Gravity Dropper Seatpost review 

Gravity Dropper Telescopic Seatpost with Lever Remote 130 at time of review.

Maverick Speedball  with handlebar remote 169.

MTBR owner reviews

It drops, so what?
It's a seatpost that goes up and down. All seatposts do this, you simply stop, undo your quick release, push the saddle down, check it's height and orientation then close the lever, get back on and descend safely. Then when you get to the bottom you do the same again to reset your saddle at pedalling height, easy. That would be the end of the story, if you really always did this and did it right.
In the real world we often ride with friends and are in way too much of a hurry to stop. Even when riding alone it's all too easy to forget to lower your post for a scary downhill. It breaks 'The Flow' that elusive state of Nirvana we sometimes reach when riding a trail non-stop. So everyone rides with their saddles at the wrong height almost all the time.

Of course you could keep your saddle as high as possible and confine your riding to easy descents, a lot of riders do this, but really you have got to be joking! So what you need is a seatpost that can be raised and lowered at will, even whilst climbing or descending, which is exactly what the Gravity Dropper post does. 

How does it work?
The Gravity Dropper seatpost is telescopic and contains a spring strong enough to raise up the inner section of post and saddle when the handlebar mounted lever is pushed. To lower the post you lift your weight from the saddle, push the lever and sit down, your weight depresses the spring and the mechanism locks at the bottom. When you reach the bottom of the hill you push the lever again and lift your weight off to allow the post to rise up, It locks automatically at the top. The post is at your perfect pedalling height again, it's small weight penalty is more than made up for by the supreme efficiency of pedalling with proper leg extension. You will frequently find yourself pushing a gear higher than a 'compromise' height would allow. You'd have to lose at least two pounds from your bike to get an improvement like that!

When you come to a steep drop, lowering your saddle can be done at full speed, even on the descent if you forget or don't know the trail. This makes following your friends down lairy descents a lot less dangerous, as your centre of gravity is lowered. The posts come in two actuation types: handlebar operated and post operated, of these we much prefer the bar operated Descender post. Although it's significantly heavier than the post operated or Maverick version lt really comes in to it's own on steep technical terrain, where even the bar mounted lever is a trick to operate. Reaching for the post could lead to a significant loss of control. When the going gets tough, is when you need to lower your post, most.

Comparison Gravity Dropper vs Speedball
Weight Gravity Dropper 450g Speedball 440g
Price Gravity 140 Speedball 159
Bar operated Gravity Yes Speedball No
Layback Gravity No Speedball Yes
Sizes available Gravity all sizes (Shims) Speedball 30.9 and 31.6
Mavericks Speedball post does the same job but doesn't have a bar operated remote. There are also a limited range of sizes. We do like the looks of the Speedball however and if your saddle is already pushed back on the rails it may be your only option as the Gravity Dropper has no 'layback' being an inline post. The Speedball has a very smooth feeling operation, you stay sitting  on it whilst it goes down and don't have to lift your weight first.

Why should I buy one?
Because it's cheaper than reconstructive dentistry. Because you will love using it.
Because you won't go back to a fixed heigt post, ever. Because your mudguard will stay at the right height too.
But it's almost twice the price of a Thomson post! This isn't just a post upgrade, it's variable frame geometry on the fly.

Sounds like you're on comission?
Cynical lot... we're not.

For more info visit Gravity Dropper and Maverick. To discuss this article visit the Forum.

Print Text Only

Need more information on this ride? e-mail the editor:

  Routes  Tips  Features  Video  New  Links  Letters  Editor  Search  Pictures  Reviews  FAQ  Forum