The not-so-minor details
Specialized Command Post IRcc
Multi positions offer more options and faster engagement.
Adjustable air pressure for return speed tuning.
Not as smooth as hydraulic posts.
The best thing to happen to mountain bikes since tubeless tyres is the adjustable seatpost. It’s one part that we can’t do without, and seeing them become a standard part on most dual suspension bikes from 120mm and up is a wonderful thing indeed!
We scratch our heads when we’re told by fellow riders that they don’t use them, especially without trying one out first. Sure there is a weight penalty over a fixed seatpost, and extra fuss with a cable etc but the benefits to your riding is so well worth it. Do yourself a favour and try one.
Specialized have used their in-house seatposts as a stock item on their bikes for years, they’ve always been popular and we’ve seen them improve in quality and user-friendliness over time. We reviewed one of the earlier Command Posts with the external cable here. – http://flowmountainbike.com/tests/tested-specialized-command-post-blacklite-adjustable-seat-post/
The Command Post is based around a purely mechanical system with a good old gear cable actuated remote lever. The majority of posts use a hydraulically adjusted mechanism (RockShox, KS, Giant, FOX, Thomson etc.). There is a lot to be said about the reliability and simplicity of a mechanical system versus hydraulic, and we’ve certainly had our share of mixed experiences and heard of many more too.
The post we have here is the latest from Specialized, the Command Post IRcc (internally routed, cruise control). It’s an updated version of the IR post with its three height positions, it looks the same on the outside but the new cc now has 10 incremental positions that are located towards the middle of the seatpost’s motion range.
If you loved the original Command Posts, but found it hard to locate that ‘dropped, but not quite dropped exactly where you wanted it’ position like us, you’ll love this one.
The Command IRcc is not infinitely adjusted as such, the 10 positions are pre-determined and when you press the lever with weight on the post, you can let the lever go where you want the post, and it’ll positively engage into place.
The Command Post’s are well known to return back to full extension with mighty force, but with the air valve easily accessed under the front side of the seat clamp, you’ll be able to fine tune the post for the desired speed. We like ours to return super fast though, it might scare your nether regions with the thought of it rocketing upwards, but when you’re riding that feared impact never happens.
The remote lever comes in two flavours, the new SRL (single ring lever) which takes place of the left hand shifter if you’re running a single chainring setup, or the original thumb lever on top of the bar. The SRL is about as easy as it gets, perfectly ergonomic but will require you to find a SRAM shifter clamp first.
The Command IRcc comes in both 31.6 and 30.9mm diameters, and for smaller bikes a shorter drop 100mm post is available. We tested the 125mm version.
No, internally routed seatposts are nowhere as simple and fast to install as the older style external ones, but they are much neater once fitted so it’s worth the extra time and swearing for the first time, so we sucked it up and got it done.
Our Pivot Mach 4 has all the provisions for internal cable routing, even for the Shimano Di2 that is fitted. It takes a bit of trial and error to find the right length outer cable so the cockpit still looks neat and tidy, but following the manual is easy, and clear.
With the help of our brilliant new Park Tool Internal Routing Kit, the job was much easier. Seriously worth the investment if you’re doing these things a lot like us.
Being a cable system there was no complicated bleeding needed and if you messed up the cable it’s just a standard gear cable found at any bike shop.
[divider]On the Trail[/divider]
We spent a few days in Rotorua on the Command Post IRCC recently in horrendously wet and muddy conditions, and the post was always doing its thing just right. The mud and grime from the trails will test a seatposts mechanism and sealing, and where some become slow to return or drop, this one never faltered during our testing time.
Back home and fitted to our Pivot Mach 4, we’ve been enjoying the post’s snappy action and intuitive adjustability, happy days.
We did find the previous version of this seatpost a bit frustrating at times with only one ‘dropped’ position, so this one has cleared up any misgiving we had. The positions were easily found when both dropping and returning, the post made a bit of noise and sent a little shudder into your backside at times, but nothing worth worrying about.
With the increased positions of adjustment, and using the SRL lever the updates to this popular post make it a worthy option, fitted to a Specialized or not.
Pricing is still yet to be advised, and mid-year availability but keep an eye out for the new post on new season Specialized’s coming to dealers very soon.