X-Fusion's $199 Manic Dropper Post - Review

Jun 14, 2017
by Mike Levy  
X-Fusion Manic dropper post


It wasn't that long ago that I could have summed up most dropper posts by using just a few words: expensive, unreliable, and really unreliable. But this one component has added so much fun to mountain biking that a lot of us couldn't live without one, regardless of the costs and sometimes inconstant performance. There are still some issues in 2017, sure, but dropper post prices have come down (a bit) and, at least in my experience, reliability has gone up. X-Fusion is aiming to hit both of those targets with their new Manic, a $199 USD dropper that the company is saying won't break down, is easy to service and, if it comes down to it, costs just $25 USD to replace the hydraulic cartridge.

Manic Details

• Travel: 125mm, non-indexed (150mm avail. this July)
• Replaceable sealed cartridge
• Adjustable remote position
• Actuation linkage to reduce lever force
• Reduced overall length compared to Hilo
• Internal cable routing only
• Sizes: 30.9 and 31.6mm
• Length: 421mm
• Weight: 667-grams (incl. remote)
• MSRP: $199 USD
www.xfusionshox.com
Weighing 621-grams (plus another 46-grams for the remote), the Manic isn't a lightweight, but I doubt that will matter to a lot of riders if X-Fusion's new $199 USD dropper proves to be trustworthy. So let's find out if it is.



Design

The Hilo dropper post, which is the Manic's predecessor, employed an emulsion-style cartridge that allowed the air and oil within it to mix. This meant that it could sag slightly at times and that a rider could pull the seat up without pushing the lever. Thankfully, the Manic sees an entirely different sealed cartridge that uses an internal floating piston to separate the air and oil—this means that there shouldn't ever be any sagging when the post is at full extension, and the cartridge removes any internal pressure from the post's main seal head, a known issue with the Hilo.


X-Fusion Manic dropper post
  The Manic features very different internals than the Hilo, and also a lower profile seat clamp and seal head.


X-Fusion wasn't trying to come up with a groundbreaking design with the Manic's internals—its cartridge is actually sourced from the same manufacturer that builds internals for a lot of other droppers on the market—but they were aiming to employ a simple and easy to service post. And when someone does need a new cartridge, they retail for a pretty reasonable $25 USD.

Activating the Manic's cartridge is a compact linkage assembly at the bottom of the post, X-Fusion's secret weapon that they've used to create incredibly light thumb pressure required at the lever. This linkage multiplies the lever force being applied, while a small spring at the linkage helps the lever snap back firmly. The design does mean that the Manic will only ever be offered with internal cable routing, however.


X-Fusion Manic dropper post
This small linkage multiplies the force applied at the lever to make for very light actuation.
X-Fusion Manic dropper post
A short spring in the linkage helps the lever to snap back with a positive feel.


The rest of the Manic is pretty straightforward: a two-bolt, low profile head is the best way to hold a seat, so that's what X-Fusion has gone with. Its seal head is also 25mm lower compared to the Hilo, which means that shorter riders who could otherwise be stuck using a 100mm dropper might be able to get away with the Manic's 125mm of travel.

As neat as the Manic's cheater linkage may be, the real pièce de résistance is the post's remote. It's a thumb paddle-style remote, much like a front shifter, with a split clamp to make installation and removal a no-brainer. The neat bit is how the remote's paddle can be adjusted every which way thanks to a ball joint-type connection between it and the perch. Simply back off the aluminum nut that's under the barrel adjuster to loosen the paddle and tweak its position, then snug it back up to lock in in place.


X-Fusion Manic dropper post
You can angle the Manic's thumb paddle to best suit you.
X-Fusion Manic dropper post
A ball joint-type mount at the thumb paddle allows it to be adjusted to sit where the rider wants it.



Performance

Much like the majority of cable operated droppers, getting the Manic installed and setup is pretty straightforward. The supplied gear shift cable is run through the remote and housing, and it's clamped in an aluminum barrel with a tiny set screw (a micro-sized 2mm hex key is required) that sits in the actuation linkage. A turn or two at the barrel adjuster was all it took to get the cable tension set correctly, and it has required exactly zero tinkering since that initial installation. The same can be said of the two-bolt head that's been creak-free.

The remote's split perch makes life easy at the other end, and while the ability to tweak the angle of the paddle thanks to the ball-joint-style clamp is neat, the remote ended up feeling best when clamped straight relative to the handlebar.

The Manic's remote was installed next to a SRAM Guide brake, and the ergo's are spot-on, too, with the paddle sitting exactly where it should. More impressive is the ridiculously light touch that the paddle requires to active the Manic; it's almost as if you could blow on the thumb paddle to get the seat to move up or down.
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Now, it's not like other droppers require two hands to get them to move or anything, but the difference between them and the Manic's remote is night and day. This might be especially important if your bike has convoluted internal cable routing that can add friction into the system.

Aside from the remote's impressively light touch, the Manic functions a lot like a dropper post should. It doesn't require a ton of weight on the seat to get it moving, and the post's non-adjustable return speed is quick enough that it feels near instant but not so fast that you'd need to be concerned about getting tagged where it can hurt. And, just as important, there's a slight 'clunk' at top-out that lets you know your seat is back up to full mast—there's no guessing here.

It doesn't matter how good the action is or how much cheaper the Manic is than the competition if it isn't reliable, but X-Fusion seems to have nailed that as well. There's still just the slightest amount of lateral free play at the nose of the seat—far less than other droppers when they're new - and that play hasn't increased at all during testing. The Manic was smooth right out of the box, and it's still just as trouble-free, too, with zero sag or perceptible change in action.



Pinkbike's Take:
bigquotesX-Fusion has a winner with the Manic. While the 150mm travel version won't be available until July, the shorter stroke Manic displayed zero issues during testing, and it offers a great feel at the lever. No, it's not the lightest option out there, but at $199 USD and a reliable design, the Manic is easy to recommend. Mike Levy
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165 Comments

  • + 164
 I really like the idea of NOT spending 500+ on a dropper. I appreciate better suspension that comes with higher prices, but all I want in a dropper is something that goes up & down reliably. Weight and "feel" really don't matter to me, I just want the thing to not break.
  • + 16
 Amen.
  • + 43
 I appreciate the feel of my current post not obliterating my balls like those specialized and fox posts.
  • + 10
 @ClaytonMarkin: haha, well theres that.
  • + 9
 I mean I don't want a total brick, but I'm with ya. I will take 100 grams for reliability any day. To me, simplicity, ease of service and replacing parts is key (don't make your remote a $65 contraption that only works at a few angles)
  • + 3
 @trialsracer: I think for 200US you should have as good as an Alvio shifter, which is on the internet for like 20US.
  • + 9
 @ClaytonMarkin: Well if you put your balls in the path of of the seatpost well that is what you get, there is an easy solution, that if you have not worked out that you move you ass up as you move the post does not hurt at all
  • + 7
 @ClaytonMarkin: You have to build up your tant callus at the first of the season then you are gtg
  • + 2
 Definitely My next dropper, riding a hilo for 2 years with one rebuild and xfusion customer service is top notch.
  • + 1
 @ClaytonMarkin: I set mine as fast as it can go, why wait for it, that makes you slower!
  • + 8
 I got myself a brand x descend a while back, it's behaved pefectly so far and they are cheaper AND lighter than the x fusion. I'd recommend it to anyone.
  • + 1
 I have two XF Hilo droppers that have been dead reliable. Both are 3 years old. I rebuild them once per year and they just work.
  • + 2
 @ClaytonMarkin: I've never had my balls crushed by my command post. maybe don't try to sit down while raising the post?
  • + 1
 @ClaytonMarkin: My exprience has been the same as @wiscobiker's. I've never had trouble with the Command Post hurting me. The faster these droppers return to the top position the better for me.
  • + 0
 2017, almost 2020, "The Jetsons" flew sky cars in the future, and lived in the clouds, and we actually can't figure out the most inane new thing on a bicycle for less than 500$. Cool future bro.
  • + 55
 It's nice to see dropper post design maturing. Durability has been the main issue, and being able to swap in a $25 cartridge is a great feature.

I recently bought one of these, and the finish and performance when new is up there with all the expensive models. Time will tell how it fares.
  • + 85
 25$ for cartridge is less than any spare part for Reverb
  • + 1
 @WAKIdesigns: in my experience the reverb usually only needs a service. Strip, rebuild with new oil = sorted. I think a few CCs of oil is less than $25. Maybe I've been lucky.
Having said that, I am really pleased to see the Manic getting a good review and that the 150 is on the near horizon.
For me the biggest downside of the reverb is the tall collar meaning I can't get the saddle even close to what the frame should allow - the Manic beats it in this regard as well as price. Trouble is I doubt I'll find any knackered ones on eBay I can fix for £40 but that's a complement I guess!
  • + 9
 seriosuly. i have a 9.8 FallLine that for over a year, has been almost perfect. but if it craps the bed, this will be on my shortlist. Good price point. Super cheap replacement cartridge. I would wait for a 150 option but other than that, what else could you want here?
  • + 29
 @sooner518: I still have a 9point8 FallLine on the go and, aside from one rebuild after a year of use, it's needed zero attention and has given me zero troubles. Great post at a decent price. Good to have a few reliable options, especially after so many years of shitty reliability all around.
  • + 23
 @ThomDawson: You've been lucky. I've warrantied 3 Reverbs, not to mention the cost of parts and rebuilds I've had to do myself. And then you consider a new reverb is like $500 or something stupid like that. And the new Reverb which was supposed to fix all the problems of the old Reverb is still equally garbage. I'm surprised people aren't giving RockShox more bad press over it, given how people lost it over the last gen of Crankbros droppers.
  • + 6
 @ThomDawson: My friends and I have had way too many seal failures on Reverbs leaving us standing pedaling home for me to ever run one again.
  • + 51
 @ThomDawson: My Gravity Dropper would like to know what the word 'Servicing' means, you see it's ten years old and doesn't have a terribly big vocabulary.
  • + 8
 @ThomDawson: I've been running reverbs for years. Simple bleed n a fluid change has always fixed every problem for me. The ones that it did not RockShox replaced for free.
  • + 3
 @properp: I guess you don't need to ride in freezing cold temps cause that's what kills even the best Reverbs out there (the same applies to a lot of stuff RS makes)
  • + 7
 @properp: I wouldn't call that bleed 'simple', especially not for a stealth version.

I've been running them for years, and so have most of my riding buddies. It's a rare reverb that isn't squishing or on the verge of needing a (potentially) expensive service. Service that typically runs $130+, and has to be done every 1 to 1.5 years.

On the other hand, I've ridden an el-cheapo KS DropZone, that thing was solid, and the Specialize IRcc is bombproof. Now I'm on the 9Point8, and while I don't have a ton of time on it, it feels super solid, is easy to service, and parts are readily available and not crazy expensive like the reverb.
  • + 3
 @ThomDawson: Yup. I've never had to rebuild the internals on a Reverb in years of use. A bleed kit and some fluid is all I've needed. I got both free when I bought my Reverb.
  • + 2
 @sooner518: 170-175mm for my lanky ass that's what more.. My 150 ks is still not enough.
  • + 3
 @ratedgg13: New reverbs go for about $325 on Amazon. I had an original reverb that was constant trouble, but since they finally replaced it, for free even though it was out of warranty, it's been trouble-free. I got another one after that for my wife's bike. Also trouble free. I'm running a KS Lev now, and that's been good also after an initial leaking cartridge that was warranteed. Southpaw remote is better than the plunger of course, but otherwise I'd consider them equal.
  • + 4
 @mikelevy @sooner518 - I echo the applause for the 9point8. Superbly reliable post @ninepointeight-9point8
  • + 2
 @ThomDawson: yep mainly just the inner seal head external o ring. Nylon bushes are available. I'm thinking of buying a bulk pack of the SKF info's and be done with it.
  • + 0
 @mikelevy: totally agree on the 9point8 being super reliable - but it's price at almost double the xfusion offering is hardly reasonable.

That said I am still willing to pay the bigger pricepoint.
  • + 4
 @Fix-the-Spade: +1 for Gravity Dropper
  • + 3
 @mikelevy @sooner518: I'm running a Thomson internal routing since 2014 and never had a problem more than replace two times the cable. The downside of the Thomson is the lever, not very ergonomic if you like the under the bar style, I replaced the original one with a Wolf Tooth Components and has been perfect the combo.
  • + 0
 @WAKIdesigns: I had my Reverb serviced last month for the princely sum of US$15 (in the Philippines). My last service prior to that was at about US$25.
  • + 1
 Biggest issue with the Reverb or any hydraulic locking post is that when the hydraulics fail (seals) it doesn't have any method for holding the post up. If you've got a low seat tube, this means you likely will be running the post at a non-optimal position for the rest of the ride. With mechanical locking posts like the 9point8 or Command Post you at least can lock the post in the top position in between every downhill section. The best option of course is something like E13's TRS dropper...no seals to worry about. Mechanical spring for return, mechanical locking mechanism. Now if only they made it lighter...
  • + 3
 @Verbl-Kint: obviously higher working standards for the people servicing the equipment in North America.

Seriously though, I couldn't get any of my local shops to even look at my reverb for under $50 cdn (I guess that is only $20usd)
  • + 3
 i have a gravity dropper post that's been with me for about 4 years now and its only been serviced once when dirt was causing the actuator on the post from stopping it to lock. Cleaned it up and she's all good. She works in any weather condition even at below freezing conditions. Its not as elegant though and still a bit pricy. A $200 seat post that's cheap and easy to service is very much welcome. This will be my next seat post even though I swear never to use X-fusion after having a bad experience with their HiLo dropper. Things just generally improve I guess if people are willing to buy/use them.
  • + 1
 reverb this reverb that. My first reverb (ive bought three now) crapped out a couple of months ago after 5 years of no maintenance. It just needed a proper service. However CRC were knocking out Reverb 150mm 31.6 right levers internal hose for £143!!!!!!!!! Needless to say I just bought a new one.
  • + 1
 @TheDaver: I run stealth droppers on my bike and my wife's. I am skilled enough to cut a few zip ties and have the seatpost out and bled and back in about 5 minutes. I do know from experience with reverbs do not like a large temperature change. If the post gets locked up sometimes a simple trick of just loosening the bleed screw on the remote will fix this issue. No bleeding required.
  • + 2
 @BaeckerX1: just carry an extra rigid seat post with you. Problem solved.
  • + 2
 @onemind123: Yup, for sure. It's not the least expensive by any stretch, but it's also less expensive than some other droppers. Either way, good to have a few options.
  • + 1
 @Fix-the-Spade: I have had my Gravity Dropper for over 9 years. Got it services and shipped back for $31.00. Love it.
  • + 2
 + 17 for Gravity Dropper. I got mine 17 years ago and it's in daily use. One rebuild 6 years ago.
  • + 1
 @onemind123: I think a rebuild parts kit alone for a Reverb is $70-$80 CAD, and then there's labour.

I have owned several Reverbs and they have all done pretty well over time, but each has developed a few mm of sag after a season and require an annual service. None have failed catastrophically on the trail. I think it's reasonable to expect that a moving part would need an annual service, but at $100+ to do so, it adds up.
  • + 2
 @DMal: I've brought several Reverbs 'back from the dead' and all it's cost me is a bottle of fluid. I'm not saying seals don't fail but so far I haven't had to replace anything other than fluid. Though seals are cheap and it's an easy diy job that I do at my kitchen table. If you wanna save yourself down time and money all you need is YouTube, a few simple tools, a quiet night in and you're good to go the next day.
  • + 2
 @ratedgg13: for real , the SRAM-ness is strong with the advertising dollars lol
  • + 1
 @stranix: I can't speak for the other testers, but I've had one issue with the new Reverb - a saggy post on the new Slayer, which I wrote about. Other than that, all of the Reverbs that I've used have been good to go.
  • + 1
 @ratedgg13: Here, here. My reverb is about to need another service and F it, just gonna ride the shit out of it and then replace it with something like this XFusion.

I don't ride much. Maybe service forks every few years (yeah, the anal guys will roll their eyes, but I'm not banging 1000s of kms a year) but yet the Reverb doesn't even make it through a season without developing noticeable play. If I can't find enough time to ride as much as I like, the last thing I want to do is burn precious time servicing something that should really last much longer.
  • + 40
 what kind of disgusting seat is that??!!??
  • + 4
 Was going to say, that is hurting my eyes.
  • + 4
 I'm very curious about that as well, wasn't even looking at the post in the pictures.
  • + 6
 It's just an old Bontrager seat, I think.
  • + 24
 That's the new Turkey Snood saddle from Fizik
  • + 8
 @mikelevy: Ha! It looks like it's covered in electrical tape. Smile
  • + 10
 that is made of from himalayan crocodile skin
  • + 18
 @jimmythehat: It looks like it's made from cabbage and painted black.
  • + 6
 @DJ-24: That sounds comfy.
  • + 2
 First thing I thought too. Duct tape saddle?
  • + 1
 @mikelevy: All ribbing aside, What make is the seat? I like the larger nose which looks like it would be more comfortable for seated climbing.
  • + 1
 @DJ-24: The really old Bontragers(before Trek) were some of the nicest saddles that I have ever owned. I even had one with the padding removed for BMX 'back in the day. The nicest saddle for having a wide nose for climbing was the original WTB SST, man I miss that wide, turned down nose.
  • + 27
 What is this a DROPPER POST FOR ANTS!?!
  • + 7
 125mm drop is perfect for me and I'm 5'10". I went up to size large frames for a longer reach, but that also meant a longer seat tube. 150mm drop was too long for me.
  • + 5
 This post has to be at least three times bigger than this!
  • + 7
 dont call my people ants. short people need droppers too :-(
  • + 1
 @scotty1212: Pssssshhhh, 500mm or bust!
  • + 14
 I totally want one, tired of Reverb. You forget to not lift the bike by the saddle when it's down and off to the service with it for internal bleeding. I want something simple and serviceable in home conditions.
  • + 2
 This is a big issue with most hydraulic posts that I've seen. Who doesn't pull up on the saddle when on a hike-a-bike trail. Makes it a huge pain for the shops, too. The Command Post takes care of this, not that it doesn't have any problems of its own. I have resigned to have at least 2 droppers and a solid post. This X-fusions model would be a welcome addition to my spare dropper bin.
  • + 1
 @Coupesaville: Apparently the Thomson has a check valve that prevents this very obvious defect.
  • + 2
 Brand-X sold by Chainreaction... It is the same one some Scotts come OEM under the Syncros brand, and it is cheap and just works... And I would say it looks a lot like this X-Fusion...
  • + 1
 Have just ordered up a Hilo (new and on Ebay) after giving up on my Reverb. The Reverb was a royal pain and was a waste of money.
  • + 15
 Thank god they included a video of the lever, never would have figured that out
  • + 28
 I go that extra mile for you.
  • + 2
 I couldn't get my head around it's operation until I saw the video... I thought maybe you twisted it. Good looking post. I've got a KS i900r that hasn't given me trouble for about 5 years, I don't like the single bolt head though.
  • + 8
 Anyone in the market for a cheap good dropper should check: www.chainreactioncycles.com/cz/en/brand-x-ascend-dropper-seatpost/rp-prod149024 550g, 120mm travel.
Amazing value! And most of it is identical to Shimano dropper www.pinkbike.com/news/shimano-koryak-dropper-seatpost-first-look-2016.html
Got one for 140 EUR. And I am completly satisfied.
  • + 8
 Crazy that Shimano, of all companies, is selling a re-branded dropper that's kinda meh. Shimano is a slow moving, conservative brand, but still... I'm sure they could make a pretty rad dropper post if they tried and it made business sense for them.
  • + 2
 @mikelevy: PRO is not really Shimano, is it? That'd be like saying Haibike is Lapierre. PRO started out as a company to offer the bike shops a one-stop option for most common bits and bobs for the not so picky rider. I need a new multitool, handlebar or grip right now, what have you got. Yes it was set up by the European Shimano distributor as they already had the channels (after all, all bikeshops deal with Shimano anyway) but I don't think Shimano Japan was that much aware of what was going on. It was only later that they started doing more high performance signature stuff for the Athertons and Thomas Vanderham. But their primary market was the not so picky rider and to make it convenient for the lbs to work with. They didn't need to develop everything, just brand some catalog products. Maybe some tools from Lifu, other bits from other companies. And they probably got the dropper post from the same supplier as CRC got them. So if a rider walks into their lbs for a cheap decent dropper they're getting the PRO branded dropper. If they visit CRC, they're getting the Brand X branded one. It is fine. Until recently, the cheaper market simply wasn't catered for so that's why they included this in their catalog. No need to please the picky and spoiled Smile .

If you're looking for a product developed and produced by Shimano, look for their logo on the product.
  • + 1
 @vinay: Never mind if PRO is Shimano or not. This dropper feels as solid as any Shimano product I have came across. It has the same internals as the pro and a bit different upper part, with offset (more convenient for most bike geometries anyway).
  • + 2
 @IluvRIDING: Yeah but that wasn't my point. It is unfair to draw expectations and slam Shimano for a product that isn't theirs.
  • + 1
 @vinay: I totally agre with you, man. I don't think it should be name it as a Shimano dropper post. Anyways, I don't get why some need to give their opinion of a dropper post in a another dropper post review.
  • + 1
 Thank you! Was going to buy another Fox Transfer (have Factory, oh Kashima, what a marketing game that is), but purchased that Brand X after reading your post and the subsequent Google searches. Saved me $120 compared to best on sale Transfer Performance plus an extra $60 for not buying another Wolf Tooth lever. I'll put in SP41 housing and good cable anyway. The Fox needed it since supplied housing is junk. If the Brand X lever lets me down I lose nothing because a WT was always the first option.
  • + 7
 Time will tell. The new Fox Transfer was supposed to be great, but my brand new one was in for warranty at Fox for 3 weeks because it wouldn't return all the way to full extension, not to mention the cable cradle was broken and was replaced with a beefier one. I like the idea of the X-Fusion being user serviceable. Fox definitely took care of mine, and so far it's working great since getting it back, but having to wait 3 weeks kinda sucked.
  • + 7
 That's a bummer, but with a sample size of one, it's hard to say it's a systemic problem with the Transfer. I have 2 and both have been flawless for 6+ months now.
  • + 7
 Dang, I've had a few Transfers come through on test bikes, as well as the one that I've been using since they were released, and had zero issues. The Transfer and the Manic are two good options in my books.

How'd the cable cradle break? In shipping or when it was on the bike?
  • + 2
 @mikelevy: Not sure really. We didn't notice it until I took it into the shop for warranty. They replaced with a MUCH beefier component (I'll have to take a picture), so it seems they might be aware of the issue. The only downside is it's heavier at the lever now, so takes more effort to release the post, but I'll gladly take that trade-off.
  • + 2
 @tgent: Not saying it is. It's just disappointing when you hear about the reliability of the DOSS and how good the Transfer is in all the reviews, then use it for ~1 month and have to send it in for warranty. =/
  • + 2
 The best dropper by miles is the Revive.
  • + 3
 My first Transfer also had a flimsy little cable cradle that broke a month in while riding. Fox sent me a new post within a week that has a much beefier cradle too. No problems since.
  • + 1
 @BaeckerX1 Did you send it to Watsonville directly or did you go through the LBS? Mine developed the same issue - won't fully extend the last 3/4" on its own. I was going top check the tension on the cable, etc. I run it slammed so I was able to compensate by raising it. I could also twerk it up with my coccyx under the nose of the saddle or take a hand off the bar and tuck it up there but that's not ideal.
  • + 4
 @jclnv: I have a test bike coming with one of those on it. Will definitely do a standalone review of the post.
  • + 1
 @mikelevy: this^
ill be waiting
  • + 4
 There's the Brand-X Ascend for $194.99CAD at ChainReaction. That's $143USD. 2 years warranty. Internal routing. Cable actuated. Using it for 6 months so far so good. Still the less expensive brand out there.
  • + 6
 Giant contact SL has been reliable, cheap and allows external and internal routing. Good to see another option.
  • + 2
 Same here. Better than the Reverb it replaced in every way.
  • + 1
 Only thing I'd change is the switch itself, which is really quite stiff, a common problem with cable-operated droppers as mentioned above. Otherwise it's been very impressive.
  • + 2
 I just got this post last week, and it works great. However, i get a lot of "chatter" from the remote when going over bumpy terrain, and this really annoys me. Ive tried tightening up the barrel adjuster, and that did make it a little better, but its still there. Do i just have too much slack in my cable, or is this something others are experiencing as well?
  • + 3
 Sounds like too much slack. Increase the cable tension until there's too much, then back it off until the post works properly. My remote has been quiet; yours should be as well.
  • + 1
 I had this issue with my KS as well. Didn't find any solution other than tightening the barrel mid rock garden
  • + 1
 I have this post as well and my remote doesn't rattle. I agree that it sounds like a cable tension issue.
  • + 1
 @mikelevy: Thanks,.Ill take it out and adjust it.
  • + 2
 I had a Command Dropper on my Enduro for 4 years and I just had to clean it and re-grease twice when it would start to lose air pressure. I never had problems with it, although it did take me awhile to realise what the problem was, I wasn't too repair savy back then though.
  • + 3
 The brand X post from ChainReaction $225 canadian shipped to my door, been on it for a couple of months now and its been trouble free as well. Really nice under bar lever as well.
  • + 2
 Subtitle seems to suggest that, as well as being less expensive, the post is less smooth and less reliable Perhaps this is one of those cases where the oxford comma is best not used? Better still, substituting "less expensive" for "cheaper", or adding in a "yet" would make it much clearer.
  • + 2
 I had a Hilo from Xfusion and it worked... But I decided to test out Shimano's dropper which is also "affordable." Seems like it's in the same playing field as the Manic in terms of weight price durability and cartridge replacements.
  • + 1
 currently have an older HiLo that's seen 3-4 rides a week for the last 18+ months. initially it took forever to return to full height and had some play, while mucking around i accidentally bled some oil out of the air valve and pumped up to 27-28psi and it magically improved and i haven't touched it in over a year. was cheap too, $119 on ebay
  • + 2
 The Manic is at 239EUR on ChainReaction DE:

www.chainreactioncycles.com/de/de/x-fusion-manic-dropper-sattelstutze/rp-prod159057

200USD is 178EUR, still a big difference USD-EUR.
  • + 5
 Too bad I don't have internal routing. Stuck with my old HiLo.
  • + 26
 Do you own a drill? But I didn't tell you to do it...
  • + 3
 DANGER!
  • + 1
 @mikelevy: I would but i worry about getting crap stuck inside my frame with an unprofessional drill-job.
  • + 1
 I have a bike with and a bike without internal routing - I never notice when I'm riding.
  • + 3
 @YouHadMeAtDrugs: Drill from the inside out. Problem solved!
  • + 0
 Internal routing is a pain in the ass anyway.
  • + 2
 Seriously though, how risky is it? Good or bad experiences?
Thinking about a 2008 Covert that would appreciate a dropper
  • + 3
 Got a Manic on the first day of US retail availability. It goes up, it goes down, and it makes riding a hardtail 1000x better. A+
  • + 1
 @mikelevy aside from the cartridge, how does this one prevent rotation? like the Reverb with grooves and brass bullets? Is this user serviceable (and affordable) as well?

I'm sick of the shop telling me "all posts have a little rotational play in them" I'm pretty sure mine didn't when it was new...
  • + 2
 Rotation is prevented by brass keys; same as most other designs. My bad, I forgot to talk about that in the review. All droppers have a touch of play in them, but it's obviously amplified at the nose of the seat. I've ridden some droppers that have LOADS of play but I can't notice it while riding. Not that it makes it okay.

The Manic is user serviceable in that it can be stripped down to be cleaned and rebuilt.
  • + 3
 @MikeLevy Nice that durability seems good, but how long did you guys have the post?
  • + 4
 They should have dropped this on a Monday.
  • + 4
 Fuck internal only. I like my hose out in the wind.
  • + 0
 Whats the point of releasing a 125mm aftermarket dropper before 150mm? So many people want to upgrade their 125mm Reverbs. I understand why 125mm comes stock on bikes because its cheaper for OEMs since it works for all sizes but if someone is looking at aftermarket stealth droppers chances are they want to upgrade their stock 125mm dropper.
  • + 3
 Hopefully this signals a drop in dropper prices too; this same design has been out for years.
  • + 2
 I have one. Spectacular performer. Will be buying 2 more. Unless someone wants to buy my brand new 31.6 for $150 shipped so can buy a 30.9. Thanks.
  • + 1
 I would buy but need 150mm
  • + 3
 Hopefully these will drop the price of uppy-downy posts everywhere.
  • + 1
 Does anyone have the command post that flies up into the danger zone at about 50 mph? Haven't got hit yet but it is always scary!
  • + 4
 It's always fun to get those at the bike shop, we just start launching various objects around the room.
  • + 1
 @YouHadMeAtDrugs: I was actually told at a local shop last night that they shot a screwdriver to the ceiling in their shop. looked to be about 15 ft high! OUCH!!!
  • + 2
 Discusses cheap replaceable cartridges... show's no photos or details of said replacement cartridges...
  • + 3
 Sorry. I'd usually strip the post down - I do that for almost everything that I review - but didn't this time around. Just picture a cartridge, any cartridge, and you'll get the idea.
  • + 1
 I've got this setup with a wolf tooth remote had it for three months, having tried at least ten seatpost droppers in the last ten years I've got to say it's my favorite!
  • + 1
 If I want a dropper post I'll need to ditch my old bike with its 27.2 diameter seat tube it seems.
  • + 1
 If you want one with more than 125mm of travel that is.
  • + 1
 X-Fusion HILO... have three of them (two in 27.2), they work great.
  • + 1
 @gtrguy: My 27.2 Hilo was terrible. Both before and after an authorized service rebuild. Each time, it functioned properly for about 4 months. That design loads the hell out of the seals.
  • + 1
 @mammal: Weird, one of mine is at least 4 years old and I've never serviced it. No problems yet... I did have to add a little air once.
  • + 2
 My thomson is .... sort of working after a year.
  • + 1
 @gtrguy: Wow. I wish... I'd buy another from MEC if I thought they might last 4 years.
  • + 1
 @mammal: Maybe I got lucky. My oldest one has the funky single bolt seat clamp, maybe there are other differences inside too?
  • + 1
 @gtrguy: Perhaps... Mine was a free sample while I worked at a bike company, so it's probably a "1st gen model".

It's too bad, because I don't want to gamble on another one (out of stock soon anyway), don't want to pay $500 for a Thompson, and I haven't heard anything good about the KS 27.2.

I was really hoping that Xfusion would come through with their promise of a 27.2 Manic (stated in the initial release), but I'm not holding my breath. I've got a steel hardtail that I don't really want to ride without a dropper (1st world problems).
  • + 1
 I'm still diggin' my rigid post's reliability and maintenance costs of zero .
  • + 2
 Super light too!
  • + 2
 So why is it $323.99 on Chain Reaction with a supposed 9% savings...?
  • + 1
 Internal routing only? Balls.i was excited till I read that. I'd rather not take a drill to a frame
  • + 1
 Is this for 26 inch wheels.
  • + 1
 This post plus a wolftooth remote may replace my stealth reverb....
  • + 1
 Ah ha, that will explain why there are cheap new "Hilos" for sale on Ebay!
  • + 1
 Should have put the money towards a new saddle!!
  • + 1
 When my Reverb gives up the ghost, I'll definitely consider this option.
  • + 1
 @MikeLevy What is the stack height when it's at the lowest position?
  • + 1
 tell that to rockshox, still clinging on to hydraulic pfft
  • + 1
 I'll take it, let's ride!
  • + 1
 No external, no 27.2, no buy.
  • + 2
 What's a dropper post
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