Ask Pinkbike - Dropper Posts, Brake Pads, and Wheel Truing

May 20, 2014
by Pinkbike Staff  
Ask Pinkbike Header

Here at Pinkbike we get inundated with all kinds of questions, ranging from the basic "Can I have stickers" to more in-depth, soul searching types of queries like if you should pop the question or what to name your first child. Ask Pinkbike is an occasional column where we'll be hand picking and answering questions that have been keeping readers up at night, although we'll likely steer clear of those last two and keep it more tech oriented.



Which Dropper Post?

Question: Pinkbike user RockStar23 asked this question in the Bikes, Parts, and Gear forum: I need advice on selecting a dropper post for my bike - I've only ever used standard seat posts so far. I'm currently thinking about the KS Lev or the FOX D.O.S.S. in 30.9mm. Have you seen any issues or constant repairs with either of those?

bigquotesIf there's one component that needs improving, it's dropper seat posts. Sure, most of them work well enough when they're functioning properly, but it's that bit about how long they stay functioning that gets annoying. That said, I'd take a troublesome dropper post that I have to get repaired every few months over a seat stuck up my ass during the entirety of every ride, and anyone who tells you different either spends most of their time riding a cross-country race bike in Florida or hasn't given one a shot. So, to answer your question, the dropper post that has given me the absolute least amount of troubles is FOX's post. The D.O.S.S. simply goes and goes, and while it might be one of the heavier options on the market, its reliability makes me overlook that fact. It's not without its foibles, however, as its remote really only works well when it's mounted under the bar on the left side in place of the shifter, and there is also a sometimes annoying knock at the top of its stroke. What about the KS post? I sure do like the stationary cable entry point on the outer tube, but I've seen enough reliability issues that I'd spring for the heavier D.O.S.S. every time. - Mike Levy


FOX D.O.S.S. seat post

FOX's D.O.S.S. dropper post trumps the rest when it comes to reliability.



Metallic or Resin Brake Pads?

Question: Pinkbike member JW9-23 asked in the "Got any DH Questions" thread: I'm running Shimano Zee brakes. Which brake pads are all-around better, metal or resin? ...For stopping, pad life, and how they hold up to heat.

bigquotesSintered metallic pads are the better choice over resin or "organic" pads because they stop with more authority, last much longer and are more consistent feeling between wet and dry conditions. Metallic pads, however, make lots of noise and while a slight rub on the rotor creates almost no friction, the sound drives some riders nuts. Brake manufacturers love organic pads because they make little or no noise when the rotors drag, which fools most riders into believing that their brakes are perfectly aligned and never rub. Organic brake pads require more squeeze to stop the bike, so they don't hit hard and thus provide ham-fisted riders more leeway before the wheels lock up. Once you get used to the harder hitting metallic pads, though, you will find that they modulate with a much more consistent feel. As far as wear goes; I have burned through a set of resin pads during one race weekend in wet conditions, while the same brake brand, fitted with metallic pads, showed only a bit more than normal wear on the same course. Metallic pads conduct heat better than organic ones, so there will be more heat transferred to the caliper pistons when compared with organic pads. The ceramic pistons in Shimano's Zee calipers are very heat resistant, so that should never be a problem. Sintered pads' heat transfer issues, however, may be nullified by the fact that the extra power that metallic pads provide, allows the rider to slow the bike in less time, which keeps the system cooler. This has been true in my experience. - RC


Shimano Zee brakes

Shimano Zee brakes can easily handle the heat transfer of sintered metallic pads. Zee OEM pads are resin types, while aftermarket brakes come with sintered metallic versions.





Wheel Truing vs. Dishing?

Question: In the Mechanic's Lounge forum, PB user pottebrian21 asks: "I've got Nukeproof Generator AM with a 2013 Hope Pro 2 EVO 9mm bolt on axle in the front and a 10mm thru axle rear Nukeproof Generator DH rear rim with a Nukeproof Generator rear hub. Because I am 190lbs and run 203mm disk brakes, the rims have become cockeyed to the left. Help me out with some reasonable words/things to demand when I get my rims re-dished by LBS.”

bigquotesWell, first, let's talk about terminology. To 'dish' a wheel means to adjust its spoke tension with the end goal of having the rim sit equidistant between each side of the hub's axle end caps. This will allow it to be centered in the frame when the wheel is in the bike's dropouts. There are some bikes (yours isn't one of them) where the wheel has to be dished to the frame, which means it is tensioned so that it is closer to one side or the other of the hub. Truing a wheel is done to remove either lateral (side to side) or radial (up and down) misalignment. Wheels need to be trued much more often than dished - usually it's just one or two sections of the rim that the spoke tension needs to be adjusted on. For more information on wheel truing, this video can help.

I'd guess that your wheels may just need to be trued, in which case I recommend walking into your local bike shop and asking the mechanics nicely if they could true your wheels (demanding is never a good tactic, especially when dealing with underpaid and overworked mechanics). Mechanics also appreciate tips, and bringing in some food or cold beverages when you pick up your bike will certainly be appreciated. I wouldn't worry about telling them how much you weigh, etc..., because a properly trued and tensioned wheel is the same whether you're 100 pounds or 200 pounds - those details would be more relevant if you were having a completely new wheelset built.
- Mike Kazimer

Start at the valve hole

Wheel truing is a common procedure that any bike shop should be able to perform.




Have some unresolved tech questions? Jump in the Pinkbike Forum and we'll look to answer it for next time.


151 Comments

  • 90 7
 "FOX's D.O.S.S. dropper post trumps the rest when it comes to reliability." - my 8 year old gravity dropper would like a word...math tells me that's 4x longer than the fox has even been on the market.
  • 14 6
 Never had a problem with my gravity dropper in 3 years. Replaced the cables is the only thing I've done
  • 14 6
 Yeah i dont know anyone who has ever had an issue with a Gravity Dropper, those are bombproof.
  • 11 6
 +1 for GD, mine been over 3 years, minimum maintenance, no boots, works all the time. Maybe PB never try GD.
  • 21 1
 If you'd read it all you'd see that the question that he was answering asked him which post he prefered between fox and ks, not gravity.
  • 11 4
 my GRAVITY is still DROPPING...
  • 5 2
 Another vote for the Gravity Dropper. Its funny how no one ever bothers to test them against the big box names....
  • 29 2
 What's really funny is nobody read the question.
  • 18 14
 Gravity's are pig ugly and don't have a long drop.
  • 6 5
 The D.O.S.S. would be pretty far from my top recommendation. Sure, it may be reliable. However, the lever design is one of the worst. Shit, the 3 position system is a step backward to most posts with their infinitely adjustable height. I run a Thomson on one bike and a KS on another. Both very solid. I've also run a reverb, and when it worked, it worked well. Rebuild is a pain though. Never run a GD, but buddies who have have done little to no maintenance. So, why praise the Fox design again? Don't get it.
  • 6 0
 I run the KS Lev and love it. I've not ridden the Fox so I can't compare. I have had some minor reliability issues however. I would still highly recommend the LEV.
  • 10 0
 yes i read the question and yes i understand it. however, to say the fox trumps 'the rest' is all encompassing to the dropper market. it wasn't the fox trumps 'the KS'...
  • 8 1
 @minty1: GD may not be the best looking, but I would still take it over any other post due to the fact that it is by far the most reliable part on my bike. Also they make a 5" drop, which is as large a drop as any one else makes...
  • 2 0
 @literally.... at the end of the day it's one reviewer's opinion, so yeah, it's really not a big deal. I love my Lev, and am in no hurry to replace it, as I'm sure you feel about your Gravity.
  • 1 0
 KS Lev - bought mine in November and it failed twice. Both times in below freezing conditions. Since I got it back in February of this year, it's been perfect.
  • 2 1
 MrPink51, isn't RC affiliated with fox?
  • 3 1
 @minty1 GD is not a fashion statement, but a tool that works when you need it, where you need it, every time. So good, the company don't even need to spend big amounts of money on advertising and magazines for positive reviews. Chances are if you own a GD it is because some one told you about it, like Moonshine...
  • 4 1
 I'm Using The RS Reveb For Quite Some Time Now .. (2 Years) I Do AM and Enduro . No Problems At All , Had The Spesh Command Post, It Was OK But Had a Poor "Seat Clamp" That Broke Within The First Month Of Using It. For Me, It Is RS Reveb All The Way..
  • 3 0
 Raleighvoid. Just as well mike levy answered the question then Smile
  • 1 0
 @orastreet1 I had similar issues in below freezing temps, I believe it's due the lowered air pressure in the chamber due to those temps ... I was going to try bumping it up but was able to just pull the saddle up with my hands to raise it and so never bothered.
  • 2 1
 @minty1 If you're looking between my legs at my 7 year old, trouble free, pig ugly GD, you've got other issues to sort out.
  • 6 10
flag minty1 (May 20, 2014 at 12:27) (Below Threshold)
 Sorry gd's are just horrible in function and form,but each their own. I usually upgrade parts a long time before they've become useless because of advances in technology making things better.
  • 17 1
 Rule 45: Pick a dropper post brand. Be a dick about it. "Is that a Fox? Ugh!"
  • 3 0
 Reading comprehension along with cursive handwriting aint tawt no mo!
  • 1 0
 Gravity Dropper would be greatly improved if they had a better seal system that you could run without the boot, a way of running the cable inside the frame "stealth" style, and if they made the cable port mechanism angle down towards the frame (like on the classic), so when you ran it on the top tube the cable didn't look so awkward (as it does on the turbo).
  • 1 0
 How about the x fusion or specialized posts? How do you guys think they stack up? I'm also in the market for a dropper and have no experience with them aside from getting smoked by my my friends who don't have to stop to adjust the post on the tech sections.
  • 4 1
 DOSS better than the KS? In who's reality? Surely the Thomson or Reverb are better options than a DOSS, sure the question was KS or Fox but no suggestion to get a Reverb seems strange.
  • 2 0
 @the-lorax: depends on if you care more about reliability or infinite adjustment. if you want reliability, get a mechanical post like the Specialized, Fox, or Gravity Dropper. everything else is infinite adjustment, and has varying levels of reliability, but the LEV and the Reverb seem to be the clear leaders. I run the Fox and like it a lot, but I'm able to put the remote in an ergonomic position, and don't mind having fixed positions (in fact, I prefer the positions to be repeatable.)
  • 9 1
 I'd rate the Gravity Dropper 9.81 out of 10
  • 1 0
 i'd say the spec posts are the worst on the market. i work at a spec shop. imo all the high end posts are on pretty even field right now. they suck to rebuild but work great most of the time. still waiting for the di2 post. or maybe sram will use their wireless electronic road tech for a seatpost
  • 1 0
 what makes the specialized post so bad?
  • 1 0
 @the-lorax, the X-fusion Hilo is quite nice when you get the air pressure dialed. I run it at 35 psi. The construction is also much simpler than most other hydraulic posts, meaning it's much easier to take apart and service. It's cable actuated so no need to bleed anything when installing. The price is also a bit lower than most others.
  • 2 0
 Guys - he did say that it was more reliable. That was the question - what is the most reliable. In his opinion, the Fox is. And I quote - "Have you seen any issues or constant repairs with either of those" That is the question he answered.
  • 1 0
 @orastreet1, not about the question, didn't u read it says Fox post trumps the rest?
Fox may trumps KSLev, but the rest?
Anyway, I run my GD turbo without the boot, no issue at all, and looks prettier too.
  • 1 0
 I realize the question asked about the Fox vs the KS, but it seems if there was a better option then it should be mentioned. I like the GD because it just works. Always. I run my GD turbo without the boot in the PNW, and aside from taking the 2 minutes to clean it once in a while, there are no issues
  • 2 0
 I recommend the Specialized dropper post. I've used it over one year with no trouble. It's easy to service (did this once, over the winter). Its return rate is really fast though, and others like the lev are smoother when they work, but I've had zero reliability problems with my Spec. mechanical post.
  • 1 0
 My G dropper saw 9yrs/5bikes without a service or a "boot". I sure liked my ks 150mm tho...
  • 1 0
 KS are available in 150mm travel which is great for tall riders. By now I have about 1500 miles on my LEV with no trouble at all. Before that I was riding a KS Supernatural for almost 3 years and several thousand miles also with not a single problem. no play, no squeak, no leak no nothing they just do what they have to do.
  • 1 0
 Int3r - Trumps the rest in reliability according to the author's opinion...not in performance when the unit is working correctly. FOX unit has some drawbacks - cable attaches at the top, has a stupid lever (IMO) and the three stage travel doesn't bother me - I find that I want it all the way up or all the way down. I would be okay with two settings - up and down. But of my two dropper posts, the Kronolog and the LEV - both have been to back to the factory for repairs two times each. Lev is working great now that the weather is warm.
  • 1 0
 For all the complaints about the fox lever, it's worth noting that the post will work with any front shifter pod that you can remove the detents from. Steenburgen was using an XTR shifter. Doesn't help if you still have a front shifter, but still. I ended up keeping the fox remote because A: I really like having a dedicated button for the middle position, instead of having to find it with my butt. B: I live in the desert, mud getting in the lever isn't a problem.
  • 1 0
 @Saskatoonbikeguy Is there even a need for a dropper post in the flattest area of the country? I suppose that would be why it's been so reliable though Wink
  • 32 21
 Regarding the last bit of the article about bike mechanics...

I agree that customers should not be demanding 99% of the time. But I find it ridiculous that in order for me to get good customer service I now have to kiss the bike shops ass and tip the bike mechanics ON TOP of the SERVICE CHARGE i'm already paying.

If your overworked and underpaid there's a simple solution...find another job, take your sob story elsewhere. Man up and do your job regardless if someone tips you or brings you a 6 pack of IPA. Most likely I just spent 6K on a new bike from your shop, they should be kissing my ass!!

Anyways one more reason to learn how to service your own bike, its easy and fun.
  • 17 3
 I read the article as though the mechanic was doing it for free, with no charge. Regardless, it's still nice to show your gratitude towards the mechanic. Finding another job isn't always an alternative. Being the customer who brings in some 50p biscuits compared the the customer who just brings in his wheels then takes them home again makes a huge difference. Not only will the mechanic remember you, it will be more likely that he will go that extra mile the next time you're in the shop.
  • 18 2
 I'm sure if you take that attitude to your bike shop everything will work out in your favour!
  • 29 8
 I'm guessing you've never worked in a shop before. If you have 6k to spend on a bike, buying a six pack isn't going to break the bank, and it's a nice little gesture that's guaranteed to improve the mechanic's mood. A little kindness goes a long way.
  • 7 15
flag RMCaird (May 20, 2014 at 9:05) (Below Threshold)
 Chances are that if you're buying a 6k bike the mechanic doesn't care less either; he's seen far more expensive bikes before and that 6k bike is nothing special. It's a nice bike, yes, but it's still 'just another bike'.
  • 7 2
 Some bike shops include free tune ups including wheel truing if u buy the bike from them.
  • 5 4
 id quite happily work in a bike shop for minimum wage right about now infact id be happy for any kind of wage at all. i bet most guys in these kinds of shows grovel du to being up on theyre feet all day and dealing with people who DEMND things rather than ASK politely. dam right id be a complete ass about someone demanding something manors cost nothing and go a damn long way when used
  • 10 1
 I make maps for a living (and also wrench on my own bike). Sometimes customers, when they arrive to pick up their maps, show up with a box of doughnuts (especially true for unusual or rush jobs). It's a small gesture, but greatly appreciated and it pretty much guarantees them preferred treatment in the future.

You don't have to tip anyone for anything, smile or say thank you, but in todays increasingly impersonal world a little kindness goes a long way!

Occasionally I need work done on my bike that I can't do at home (chased frames, bearings pressed, etc.) and almost always have the service performed while I wait or the same day - no matter what time of the year. Sliding a mechanic a 6 pack of tasty IPA's can sometimes mean the differences between being off your bike for a day vs.a week.
  • 14 14
 You should also tip your: server at mcdonalds, cashiers, flight attendants, cooks, lawn mower guy, post man, toll booth person...basically anyone you assume to make less money than you
  • 5 4
 @LaXcarp... The difference is that the reason you're asking a mechanic to do something is, most probably, because you do not feel as though you have the adequate skills for that particular job. It's not necessary to tip them, but it's a nice gesture and a way to say that you to the mechanic themselves, as opposed to just giving the shop money.
  • 11 0
 ^you guys just did the tip scene from reservoir dogs
  • 24 8
 If Im paying top dollar to a shop for a mechanic to true my wheel or whatever...he better smile, do his job, and thank ME for my business.

Now in that same situation If they offer to true my wheel with little to no charge in an hour before my ride then that may warrant a tip or 6pack of IPA.

see the difference? if they do me a favor I'll do them a favor...but dont assume for one minute that when a shop charges you to fix your bike that they are doing you some magical favor. your paying for it, your the customer, and the customer is always right. If you dont believe that then good luck in the business world.

If a customer comes in demanding that the shop fix their bike the shop has every right to charge that person top $...and the bike shop should be thankful for that persons business...not the other way around.
  • 7 1
 @RMCaird: I am not asking a mechanic to do anything. I am paying for him to do it. I have heard plenty of mechanics say...what, do people think I'm an alcoholic or that I love donuts?!?
  • 7 1
 Exactllly. Tip is a nice gesture, that means something extra, not something that should be expected - although I know that this is country specific. So in other words, tip should improve the mechanic's mood but not the quality of his work, that should be 100% no matter whether you give him a tip or not. We're not in some third world country where you have to bribe people each time you want them to do something for you.
  • 2 3
 Hell, I agree with the tips/gifts. When i was a poor student the LBS mechanic i dealt with every time would true my rims for me pretty much as often as i needed for the simple cost of... A pack of chocky biscuits!!!
  • 4 1
 Haha, ya tipping can be a lil over the top in the states...like when waiter/waitress bank on 20% min but fail to notice an empty wine glass or address group as "you guys" when women present. Rookie stuff.
  • 3 1
 the attitude of the shop is important. if you buy a bike and the next day the f*ckers can't remember who you are, then find a new shop, end of story. if they do you a favor, even go "out of their way" to help you, by all means, show some appreciation. reward good behavior, and they will remember you!

the idea is they are doing something with skill and precision you perhaps cannot do or not comfortable with. dont be a spoiled bitch and act like they owe you everything! show some respect and you will get it in return, if they are worth dealing with.
  • 3 1
 I don't tip/gift after the fact because it is better to establish that sort of thing before or during whatever service you need (builders, mechanics, your IT area etc).
  • 2 1
 This is why the LBS system is failing. The mechanic is getting paid by the shop. The customer is paying the shop. To feel a tip is needed is asinine. Secret handshakes and needing bribes is not the way to keep customers. The mechanic needs to have the wheel true, finished on time, and be happy he has a customer to keep him employed. I got sick of the LBS scene, and bought a wheel trying stand. Never had a wheel problem again.

BTW, spoke tension is determined by the wheel build, not rider weight, yet you want a tip for me to teach you about the physics of wheel building? wTF?
  • 3 2
 If you walk into a shop and "demand" something to be done, it will get done. However, as soon as you walk out the door, every mechanic in the shop will know that you were a huge douche, and the next time you walk in, everyone will remember that. Instead, walking in and making conversation with the mechanic will go a long way. You don't even need to tip or bring in some beer, as awesome as those things may be. If you're a nice person, the next time the mechanic sees you walk in the door, they'll be glad to help you out, and chances are they'll do a little extra work on your bike for no charge. I know that some people are saying that if you're paying a shop to work on your bike, you are entitled to have that work done. This is very true. However, most people need to understand one thing: mechanics don't give a f**k. They work there for the deals on parts and the access to tools. They work there because they love bikes and they love riding their bikes. If you think that your $6000 bike deserves special attention, to the mechanic it's just another bike. Get over it.
  • 2 0
 Being pleasant is just what people should do. It's not be a dick, or bribe the guy polarity. I learned I expect a true wheel to have less than 1mm variance at the most extreme. The LBS mechanics seemed to think 3mm was fine. I learned to do my own wheels, and have had zero failures. My brake bleeds always work, and my bikes shift right the first time after a tuneup. No need to go back 3-4 times with bribes. I completely get why the LBS model is dying.
  • 1 1
 "You should also tip your: server at mcdonalds, cashiers, flight attendants, cooks, lawn mower guy, post man, toll booth person...basically anyone you assume to make less money than you"

Sorry? I don't think that is a long term answer to the issue of low wages. www.youtube.com/watch?v=vFnT4AbJLrw
  • 2 0
 @whatyousaid: With regards to "...the customer is always right. If you dont believe that then good luck in the business world," check out this excerpt from a book written by Gordon Bethune, former COO and President of Continental Airlines. It's a breath of fresh air for those that have experience in the service industries:

m.huffpost.com/us/entry/5145636
  • 1 0
 @orientdave.....That was sarcasm
  • 1 0
 Just a thought: if you have a lot of customers who are dicks, maybe it's a problem with the lack of decent customer service?
  • 1 0
 @Willie1 - I never said spoke tension is determined by rider weight. My response reads, "a properly trued and tensioned wheel is the same whether you're 100 pounds or 200 pounds." Rider weight can be a factor when building a wheel set from scratch - it can play a role in choosing the lacing pattern, spoke diameter, and which rim is used. A 300lb Clydesdale will be more demanding on his wheels than a 100lb whippet.
  • 1 0
 The Specialized command post is much overlooked in this argument. Its air and mechanical and it does away with hydraulics. Yea its not infinitely adjustable, but to me id rather be on something locked in mechanically, than sitting on oil.
  • 1 0
 Mike, I misread your comment. I am assuming now that you mean a heavy rider needs to pick a more robust wheel with higher spoke count rather than compensating through misguided spoke tension increases which wont work.
  • 10 0
 Never had an issue with either of my Reverbs. If you live in the dry and dusty world of Moab/Fruita/Sedona resin pads are the tits.
  • 11 0
 The early Reverbs were awful with regards to reliability. It seems they've sorted that out now. My latest Reverb has been flawless for over a year with no service whatsoever.
  • 3 1
 Most sram hydraulic products work amazing with constant maintenance, but i had a first gen reverb that i never bled and never had an issue with, thing work amazingly. The mounts for all of these models levels does need to be address. It take some wizardry to figure the best place to put one and make it ergonomic. Good thing front derailleurs are becoming a thing of the pastWink
  • 4 0
 I run a 1x with a Reverb and X0 Trail brakes, which play really, really nicely on the bars. A single clamp for brake and rear shifter on the right, and a single clamp for brake and Reverb remote on the left. I'd agree that the true LH remote isn't ergonomic, which is why I run a RH remote on the underside of the left. Wayyy better.
  • 1 0
 I love my Reverb, but I wouldn't call it reliable. Both my wife's and mine were bought brand new and needed rebuilds less than a month in... I think getting the Reverb rebuilt once a season is just a "fact of life".
  • 6 0
 Reverb 2 years still perfect.
  • 1 0
 thats the other thing about fox. still no 150mm option??? other brands are working on 170mm already and they are stuck on 125mm.
  • 1 0
 First time I send my Reverb for rebuild, after 3 years of use in both wet and dry conditions. No complains here, I could go another 3 years with this same dropper post.
  • 1 1
 Who really needs more than 125mm drop on their post?
I often don't even use that on my reverb on even the most technical downhill!
  • 2 0
 Error
  • 2 0
 We all have different styles. My 125mm Reverb is enough, but just barely, for "all-mountain" riding. But I wish for more every time there are dirt jumps...
  • 2 0
 Giant Contact Switch is bad overtime. the chamber is sluggish.
  • 5 0
 Don't forget to check if the discs have something like "organic pads only" on them. they are lower quality and will wear more quickly if used with metallic pads.
  • 2 0
 This is very VERY important, ive bought a expensive IceTec disc once, and set it with a metallic brake pad, since it was for my DJ bike, and i live in a hilly city, the brake was going to do all the hard work. I have literally DUG through the disc in a couple months, since then it is completely useless, since the braking surface is shaped like a U, and no brake pad will grip evenly.... Since then, organic only for my DJ, and know when to let go of the brake to avoid fading !
  • 3 0
 some things about organic vs. sintered pads:

-sintered pads actually are more "powerful" (generate more friction at the pad / rotor interface) in wet conditions than in dry conditions

-check that your brake system can accept a sintered pad due to the extra heat generated, some cheaper or more XC orientated systems are designed only for use with organic pads

-check your disc rotor can accept a sintered pad, I have seen certain 'organic only' rotors quickly ruined by sintered pads

-organic pads can help with particular vibration "resonance" issues that affect certain combinations of bicycle frame, rotor and brake brand

-organic pads generally give a softer brake response, and can be ideal for the rear brake to avoid lock-up of the rear wheel, allowing more angular control into corners
  • 4 1
 GRAVITY DROPPER POST = by far the most reliable. Its a spring and a pin with a full length cable pulling the pin. It doesn't get more simple and easy to service hence why it is so reliable. Between the wife and I we've had 5 of them over the years. Still got 3. O and the cable doesn't move with the seat, so no annoying cable rub.
The KSi900 has also been very reliable, but the moving cable is a pit of a pain when you've been used to the fixed cable on the gravity dropper.
I also have a stealth reverb, failed in first 6 months, lovely action when it works, but fragile lever.
I've currently got two new Lev 150mm posts, great bits of kit with fixed cable adjustable side, unfortunately both have failed in one way or another. One of them twice now.
  • 2 0
 Ah, here I was trying to decide on spending the extra $130 more to get the KS Lev ($350 CDN, LBS price) or the X-Fusion HiLo ($220 CDN), and now I have to start all over with Fox and the Gravity Dropper. By the time I finally get around to buying one, everyone else will be on hover bikes.
  • 4 0
 I like my Reverb as well.. two years trouble free.. and I bought it used for 150
  • 1 0
 I had ( sold it ) a 2012 Stumpjumper EVO and it had the worst carbon "creek" noise when I pedaled it uphill. I had the BB serviced and the best LBS look at it with no improvement. The shop said, " yeah those noises can be hard to track down." I greased the pivots, seat rails, post ( even though I was told not to grease the post on a carbon frame ). I loved the bike but the creaky noise drove me bananas. So I sold it. Any tips??
  • 4 0
 Here's a great resource to help you silence those annoying noises: www.pinkbike.com/news/Tech-Tuesday-Finding-and-Fixing-that-Creak-2011.html
  • 2 0
 chain ring bolts.
  • 1 0
 Did it have a Maxle rear by chance? My Horsethief creaks if the Maxle gets slightly loose.
  • 1 0
 all maybes? thx, bike is gone now but I keep all your tips in mind.
  • 1 0
 Greasing a carbon seatpost will eventually seize in the frame, and it won't come out. Next time, use a carbon grease. It's gritty to provide more grip while still acting like a grease, and it won't seize anything up.
  • 1 0
 it was a carbon frame NOT carbon seatpost, but yeah I didn't
  • 1 0
 it was the bottle cage bolts on my bike. i'd replaced the original ones with shorter ti bolts , hadn't screwed them in tightly and it literally sounded like the frame was gonna snap. carbon frames are very expensive resonators.
  • 1 0
 I have both Posts and they each have their strengths. I agree that the FOX is super reliable, and I have two bikes with them, and AM & DH. I bought the LEV because of the 150mm legnth for my trail bike and it is great for setting anywhere in its travel, tho it did get stuck once already but I was able to get it back down with a little persuasion. I would love to know what causes this to happen, and if there is anything that can be done to prevent it.
I usually store my bikes with the post down, and on this occasion I remember I had come back from the mountains with it up and put it in my shed that way. The next day it would not go down easily. Could it be a change in the air pressure outside, or drastic temperature change that causes it? Just a guess, but it has not done it since. Seems that if it was a mechanical issue it would do it again and again.
If I had to pick one, I'd go with the Fox.
  • 1 0
 If i had to pick one, It'd be somebody coming out with one that costs half the price of the current ones, and still provides reliable performance. but since I don't have that option, I'll take the Fox, since it's been such a good performer for me so far.
  • 1 0
 There is one Giant make it. Cheap and works well . I did have a failure after a very muddy winter but the warranty replacement has been going strong fot over six months with one cable inner replacement a week ago.
  • 1 0
 While you may have not had many problems with the Giant one, other people have, they're not known for being any more reliable than the other choices. Irrelevant to me anyway, though, as a setback seatpost doesn't work for me on my current bike(compromises my seating position so badly that my back is on fire after half an hour.)
  • 1 0
 On the wheel truing statement about not worrying about dish: Just my thoughts but a lot of specialized frames require a little differnent dish then most other frames as their rear ends are moved a little off to one side. I dont rember the reason, it has something to do with having a more ideal spoke angle while the rim is centeres in the frame or something weird like that. It made for an interesting read one time.
  • 1 0
 That's a thing of the past. Up til about 2011 I believe. The Demo use to be that way.
  • 1 0
 I flat out refuse to pay 400 bucks for something so unreliable. If anything that expensive on my car had such a short life and poor reliability I'd drive something else. Like someone else said, office chairs seem pretty damn reliable these days.
  • 1 0
 They all have there pro's and cons I have tried a majority of them and currently running the KS LEV Ti even though there service tech is a Fr$#KIN TOOL!!!!!!!!!! to say the least. The problem is that most people don't understand that they require servicing just like forks or shocks do everyone thinks they should last for ever. I run the KS because I don't like cable movement.
  • 1 0
 Our team has been using YEP 155mm posts for some time now without any issues. More and more people around have them and they are very happy www.madelkcycles.com/adjustable/282-yep-uptimizer-hc.html?search_query=yep&results=2

I'm a big fan of Gravity Dropper but decided to give YEP a go.
  • 3 0
 Might be a dumb question, but are there brake rotors that are resin specific or metallic specific, or does it not matter?
  • 2 1
 Yes, there are, bottom line is that metallic pads eat brake rotos for breakfast !
  • 2 0
 Cheaper shimano rotors have a marking that states to only use resin pads. They will wear very quickly with sintered pads.
  • 4 1
 personnally im a huge fan of the ks lev, 6 inches underneath me never disappoints!
  • 6 5
 That's what she said.
  • 2 0
 Sorry to hear that.
  • 2 0
 i have the RS reverb stealth and the CrankBrothers Kronolog and i have found some issues, none of the 2 lasted more than half a year without having to go to guarantee
  • 1 0
 I've had my reverb going on two years. Only bled it once and that was mostly because I trimmed the hose. Other than some basic tlc needed every now and then its been flawless.
  • 2 0
 These pinkbike things are great, explains the rub when I changed brake pads. I also thought the dropper malfunctioning was just me.
  • 1 0
 Had a ks i950 for 3+ years and is just starting to develop some side to side play but never had issues with it sticking in one position.
  • 1 0
 Mine lasted 3 years before refusing to stay up when you sat on it, or stay down when you weren't... I figured that was an OK life so I bought another KS post - the LEV. But both are/were a bit sticky, i.e. needing to bounce on them a bit to get them to go down. Don't think I'd buy another, reverb next I think.
  • 1 0
 I have a KS the 27.2mm with piggy back reservoir. Failed completely after standing for around 12 months, stripped it down, new O rings added a Schrader valve to bottom of reservoir and recharged with pressure, it has worked flawlessly since returning to full extension every time.
  • 5 1
 Reverb is THE SHIT.
  • 6 12
flag EnduroFan (May 20, 2014 at 9:00) (Below Threshold)
 cant agree more,my fking reverb gave me fking cancer
  • 4 1
 I'm confused, is that a good thing? Are you even agreeing? Lol
  • 5 0
 There is shit (bad). And The Shit, which is well, better.
  • 1 0
 Sorry, shoulda said, I know what 'the shit' is. Just wasn't sure about the shit coming from Endurofan.
  • 3 2
 I would have thought it would be more accurate too suggest that dishing is done using different spoke lengths not just spoke tension|?
  • 2 0
 Spoke length does play a role when you're first building a wheel, but on a wheel that's already been laced up the spoke tension is what will be changed to alter the rim's position in relation to the hub.
  • 1 0
 I can't say I'm totally satisfied with my doss dropper,has anybody had issues with it losing pressure in colder temperatures?
  • 3 2
 How does slowing the bike in less time keep the system cooler? Surely it would be the opposite?
  • 6 2
 Brakes change momentum (kinetic energy) into heat, so the amount of heat for a given amount of braking force is the same, regardless of the amount of time that braking has taken place. That said, using the brakes in stronger, shorter intervals, like top riders do, allows the heat to migrate from the rotor's braking track and the pad surfaces between intervals, where it can be radiated to the atmosphere from less important parts of the system - like the caliper body and the rotor's spokes. Dragging the brakes like punters so often do, concentrates the heat at the pad and braking tracks, which can boil the brake fluid in a worst-case scenario. Extended braking intervals also create more heat because often, resistance created by cornering forces and the terrain itself would have sufficiently reduced the rider's speed, and "security braking" through those sections would have been unnecessary.
  • 4 0
 Total energy in and total energy out are going to be exactly the same, only the one where you are stopping quicker will reach a higher temperature and be more likely to boil the brake fluid. The sintered brake pads may have a higher thermal conductivity, but that just means it will lose the heat from the pad quicker. The total energy that goes into the calliper itself will be the same. Slowing down over a shorter period of time will result in higher temperatures.
  • 4 0
 There's some amount of increased efficiency in heat transfer when the delta between the hot thing and the cold thing is higher as well.
  • 3 0
 Yeah, that was pretty poorly worded: "extra power ... keeps the system cooler". This explanation about keeping the pads off the rotors is much clearer.
  • 1 0
 That's the heart of it ^^^ thanks Joeyjoeotorg
  • 1 0
 KS, 2010 Avid Codes! Learning to build, dish, and true your wheels...mad skills!
  • 1 0
 Best upgrade ? Dropper post or stans flow ex? I have Alex dt17 rims with shimano hubs on an hard tail
  • 2 0
 Solid article guys! Please do more like this and bring back Tech Tuesday!
  • 2 1
 I recommend the Specialized Blacklight Command Post. Reliable and requires very little service.
  • 1 0
 What about Thomson Elite Dropper, anyone using it? I'm thinking about the soon to be released stealth version.
  • 1 0
 I picked my dropper by finding the company with the longest post, and external routing. KS Lev - 150mm. Love it so far.
  • 1 0
 Have had my DOSS warrantied twice now. It will begin to drop from the top to middle position without warning.
  • 1 0
 truing wheels ? nah, when i bend mine i use my knee and the power of will ! Smile ))))
  • 1 0
 fox dropper suck in my opinion not to mention that it destroys your nuts, rockshox is defiantly the way to go
  • 1 0
 If fox dropper posts are as bad as their forks, and as expensive in service as their forks..... No way i would buy one!
  • 1 0
 this is a complete enduro conversation i cant enduro anymore of.....................
  • 1 0
 Can't fault the wheel truing explanation / advice ... spot on !!
  • 1 0
 Seat clamps work great.....
  • 2 0
 great review.
  • 1 0
 Dear Pinkbike,

I've broken my stem. What do I do?

yours,

jędrzej
  • 1 0
 Buy a new one?
  • 1 0
 I just knew it's gonna end this way.
  • 1 0
 I'll try not to get offended from that bit about Florida.
  • 2 2
 Office chairs seem pretty darn reliable at this point! Come on guys!!!!
  • 1 0
 Haha I wish! I seem to need a new office chair every few months... This is why I ride with a standard, non-dropper post haha

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