Dropper posts add weight to your rig—it's a ridiculously self-evident fact that most of us have come to accept because, well, until we start fabricating the guts of a dropper post and its remote out of thin air and fairy dust, the grams are just going to add up. Simple as that, really. This doesn't mean, however, that we can't shed some weight from our droppers. The real question is how. KindShock's approach, when they debuted their LEV C (external cable routing) and LEV Ci (internally routed) models a year ago, was to craft the seat post's mast from unidirectional carbon fiber. They also lopped 50 grams from their original cable and remote. The total weight for their original LEV Ci model? 436 to 450 grams.
There was just one hitch—the thing only offered 65 millimeters of seat height adjustment.
Palm, meet forehead. Forehead, meet palm.
In a world in which riders are clamoring for at least 125 millimeters of adjustment (if not 150 millimeters or more) a mere 65 millimeters doesn't cut it. That's why KindShock originally marketed the LEV CI as a cross-country post. Well, the LEV CI will now offer between 100 and 175 millimeters of seat height adjustment. In other words, it's no longer just for XC racers. KindShock claims that the post is at least 100 grams lighter than their next closest competitor.
The new LEV CI will sell for "mid to high $500" (depending on which travel package you pick) when it hits the streets. Expect to see it in shops before summer rolls around.
Thoughts of a $500 to $550 dropper post don't arouse your inner weight weenie? Too busy seeing that price tag and thinking, nope, you'd still like to have money for things like food and shelter? If that describes you, KindShock's new LEV SI model is probably welcome news because it promises to lower the price ceiling on long-travel, internally routed posts.
The new model will sell for between $269 (100 to 125 millimeters of height adjustment) and $289 (150 millimeters of height adjust). The LEV SI doesn't feature the company's patented one-way roller clutch bearing, opting instead for a new, internal bushing system that KS says will still keep annoying side-to-side play to a minimum.
As with its more expensive stable mate, you can expect to see the LEV SI sometime between Sea Otter and the start of summer. In other words, it's coming soon and it'll add a bit more competition to the mix. X-Fusion is currently leading the cost-conscious game, with its $200 Manic post, followed by the LEV SI, then Giant's $300 Contact SL Switch and Fox's $329 Transfer Performance.
Competition is always a good thing.