When dropper posts first came onto the market, you could count the brands offering this crazy new technology on one hand. Fast forward, and now droppers are everywhere. We are even seeing World Cup level cross country racers fitting them to their race bikes, proving the weight penalty is worth the benefits to the toughest of weight-conscious critics.
The not-so-minor details
Bontrager Drop Line Dropper Seatpost
Range of heights available.
Regular maintenance in muddy conditions.
Suddenly it seems like just about every company has brought out a dropper post, either as an aftermarket alternative to the established players, or to spec dropper posts on lower priced bikes by manufacturing their own model (Giant, Specialized, Merida and Trek/Bontrager all have their own posts now).
The Bontrager Drop Line Dropper Seatpost falls into both of those categories – OEM and aftermarket – killing two birds with one stone by allowing Trek to spec dropper posts on more bikes, and providing an aftermarket upgrade for consumers.
How does the Drop Line work?
The Bontrager Drop Line is an internally routed, cable actuated dropper post, operated by a lever that sits on the underside of the left-hand side of the handlebar. The cable stop simply ‘plugs’ into the base of the post, which operates the internals that offers infinite height adjustment.
What lengths available?
The Drop Line comes in 100, 125 and 150mm variants. Obviously, the more travel you go for, the more the post weighs, but we’re very pleased to see Bontrager offer different height options, as the needs of a shorter cross-country racer are very different to that of a lanky enduro rider.
A 150mm Drop Line weighs in at 624 grams, which is similar in weight to more established dropper posts such as the KS Lev Integra and the RockShox Reverb.
Is it easy to install?
Too easy. With the cable installing with the head at the post end – not at the lever – and fixing with a grub screw at the thumb lever, the install is quick. If you’re fussy about cable neatness like we are, you’ll appreciate how easy it is to cut down the cable in increments until you have the perfect length.
Is it reliable?
We’ve ridden the Line post on dry trails and it feels super-slick, smooth and consistent. It’s only when the rides are wet and long that the post falters, the sealing suffers when there is mud flicking up from the rear tyre onto the shaft, so keep that in mind. Our suggestion would be to make sure there is no buildup around the seal area and learn the quick job of lifting up the seal (two allen keys and some thick oil/grease and you’ll be right) to clean and re-lube the sliding parts of the post.
While we are used to not servicing some of the more expensive posts like the FOX Transfer, we can accept paying less for a post that requires a little more love and care from the user.
Unlike many of the cheaper posts, the Bontrager didn’t develop an unacceptable amount of rattling or play – nobody likes a rattling post that you can feel when you ride, it’s super distracting. So, top points on this one, Bonty.
Is the post easy to actuate?
The Drop-Line’s lever is fine. It’s somewhat similar in appearance to KS’s Southpaw remote, the lever isn’t a thin and wide paddle-like the KS, instead, it’s narrower and chunkier. Even with a slick and new cable, the actuation is slightly vague, though we’ll get used to it.
How much does it cost?
Here’s where Bontrager gets a big thumbs up over other alternatives! The Drop Line retails for $359 in every size, which is great value compared to other offerings on the market, and of course, the Drop Line is backed by Bontrager’s excellent 30-day unconditional guarantee as well as a three-year warranty, so there are no worries there.
Would we buy one?
For $359, with a three-year warranty, we could definitely get used to the lever and frequent service intervals during the muddier rides. The Bontrager Drop Line is a great option to consider if you’re thinking about getting a dropper post or perhaps increasing your dropper post travel without breaking the bank.
For more – click through the Trek page here: Bontrager Line Post.