My dropper invention... Good or bad?

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My dropper invention... Good or bad?
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Posted: Feb 11, 2020 at 9:57 Quote
Do you think this would work? I might manufacture it. Do you see any big flaws I am overlooking? Would you buy this?

I am a big fan of simplicity.
Here is how my dropper design works... It's literally just a track the pole slides up and down with a lock to hold it in position activated by your thumb or whatever. To raise and lower it you simply open the lock, pinch the seat with your legs and then move it to the position you want, and then close the lock. I don't see why pinching the seat between your legs wouldn't work well. By doing this you can eliminate so much.

Why is this a good idea?
A) cost, my dropper would cost around 80-100$
B) weight, it would be about 1/2 the weight of a normal dropper
C) strength: it would be very strong and never break
D) reliability: 0 service ever. Maybe lube the track once every 3 years.
E) adjustment: you could easily have 200mm travel or more.

Posted: Feb 11, 2020 at 10:52 Quote
so the dropper lever would in effect just be something that loosens/tightens the seat clamp?

Posted: Feb 11, 2020 at 10:57 Quote
pulling the saddle up with your knees/legs is not that easy on the trail.

emergency drop might be OK though...

Posted: Feb 11, 2020 at 14:43 Quote
All you need to add is a spring and you would not have to do the pinch-it-with-your-legs thing.

Posted: Feb 11, 2020 at 18:57 Quote
Add that spring and you have a gravity dropper circa 2007... and yes they were and are quite reliable.

Posted: Feb 11, 2020 at 21:11 Quote
Hoboinalambo wrote:
so the dropper lever would in effect just be something that loosens/tightens the seat clamp?

Not quite, it would have a tube inside a tube like a normal dropper. But yeah that’s basically the idea.

Posted: Feb 11, 2020 at 21:15 Quote
gotohe11carolina wrote:
Add that spring and you have a gravity dropper circa 2007... and yes they were and are quite reliable.
The spring wouldn’t be that simple I think because as the seat compresses it would get harder and harder to push down, which i think might feel terrible. Plus it would shoot back up with varying force. I think this is why droppers become complicated.

Posted: Feb 12, 2020 at 0:50 Quote
Ever heard of a Hite Rite?

Posted: Feb 12, 2020 at 9:13 Quote
Sayshell wrote:
gotohe11carolina wrote:
Add that spring and you have a gravity dropper circa 2007... and yes they were and are quite reliable.
The spring wouldn’t be that simple I think because as the seat compresses it would get harder and harder to push down, which i think might feel terrible. Plus it would shoot back up with varying force. I think this is why droppers become complicated.

As part of your research, I suggest you take a look at a Gravity Dropper (Classic and Turbo). Both use an undamped coil spring, and while not as refined as nicer posts, the issues you are bringing up are really non-issues.

In terms of keeping things dead simple, relaible, low maintenance, and light, it is really hard to beat the Gravity Dropper Classic. What you give up is infinite adjust (most have 3 positions) and you need to give the saddle a butt-tap to get it to return. I would take a hard look at that and see if you are offering any real advantage over it.

You should also look at something like the PNW Cascade. It has a coil spring, and just uses internal friction to keep the return speed under control. What you are suggesting is basically just a PNW Cascade without the coil in it.

Interested to see how this goes. Good luck.

Posted: Feb 12, 2020 at 9:46 Quote
Sayshell wrote:
Do you think this would work? I might manufacture it. Do you see any big flaws I am overlooking? Would you buy this?

I am a big fan of simplicity.
Here is how my dropper design works... It's literally just a track the pole slides up and down with a lock to hold it in position activated by your thumb or whatever. To raise and lower it you simply open the lock, pinch the seat with your legs and then move it to the position you want, and then close the lock. I don't see why pinching the seat between your legs wouldn't work well. By doing this you can eliminate so much.

Why is this a good idea?
A) cost, my dropper would cost around 80-100$
B) weight, it would be about 1/2 the weight of a normal dropper
C) strength: it would be very strong and never break
D) reliability: 0 service ever. Maybe lube the track once every 3 years.
E) adjustment: you could easily have 200mm travel or more.

Or how about "Hey Siri, drop the seat..."

Posted: Mar 3, 2020 at 0:49 Quote
iffy wrote:
pulling the saddle up with your knees/legs is not that easy on the trail.

emergency drop might be OK though...
Yeah I think you are right, it depends a lot on the seat tube angle, seat, etc...

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