Thomson Dropper Post Unveiled – Plus, Handlebars & Direct Mount Stem!

2013 LH Thomson adjustable height dropper seatpost
LH Thomson’s in a comfortably tough position. Riders generally just assume their stuff will be flawless, but that means it needs to be flawless before it ships. That’s part of the reason this thing’s been in the pipeline and rumor mill for so long. Now, it’s come out of vaporware.

Dropper seatpost will ship with both the lever and the remote. It’s a simple single bolt swap using a suicide bolt that’ll snap on impact to save the post if you wreck. The slider uses a 12-sided star shaped lower section (think Torx but with more V’s) under the hood to prevent rotation. That provides a ton of surface area to bear the load. It slides on Norglide bearing/bushings with Motul oil and Trelleburg o-rings and upper bushings. Once the bushings are made, then they’re finished to provide a tight seal but keep moving easy.

2013 LH Thomson adjustable height dropper seatpost

Lever or remote? Take your pick, both are included in the box.

2013 LH Thomson adjustable height dropper seatpost

The cartridge is nitrogen charged and not user adjustable. The lever can be pushed anywhere in the range to control both depression and rebound speed. Floor it and it’ll drop at one foot per second, but it can go much slower than that for those of us that like to hover on it to drop slowly until it’s at the right spot. So, yes, it’ll stop anywhere in the travel range and lock there. It uses a second check valve that keeps it from pulling up when depressed, so you can lift the saddle without yanking the post up.

2013 LH Thomson adjustable height dropper seatpost

The remote lever is super slim but feels pretty good.

2013 LH Thomson adjustable height dropper seatpost

Available in 30.9 and 31.6 with 125mm travel. Fully extended, it’s 400mm tall. Cable management is a closed loop, so it won’t pop out and get in the way.

David Parrett says the internal spring is strong enough to support the rider, so the post should be very durable. The top bushing is pretty tall and the bearing-bushing is 125mm long, the length of the travel. Their goal was to make it last in the worst snowy, sandy conditions for two years before needing to be serviced. When the time comes, you’ll have to send it in for work. They decided to make it a completely sealed, non user serviceable system to reduce headaches.

Retail will be $379, available Spring. Weight is 450g with the lever, a bit more if you add the remote and its 60″ of cable. The housing and cable will be automotive grade materials, so they recommend not swapping it out as it should last the life of the product.

2013 LH Thomson titanium handlebar

The titanium handlebar. Mostly pics here, you can get the details from this post.

They’re introducing a new 50mm direct mount stem with normal rise. Parrett said the negative rise model, in the background, was a bit low for people and they were getting requests for something a bit longer than the 40mm DM stem. Voila – 50mm DM stem. This white, BTW, is simply a rapid prototype, not a white colorway.

2013 LH Thomson carbon fiber road cyclocross handlebars

The carbon fiber handlebars are being done in the KFCone (Katie M-F’in’ Compton One) cyclocross model and a road model. Both will come in up to a massive 46cm wide version using a very straight top section that exaggerates its width.

It’s a bit hard to see due to the glare, but the road handlebar is a bit flatter on top with a nice curved recess underneath that doubles as a finger hold and cable groove. First impressions are very good, but we’ll have to wait until we get one in and wrap and cable it up.

The ‘cross bar is a little less flat and thick on the top, but still has a larger diameter than most. The bottom of the flats has a Sorry-game-piece shape that lets you run a cable on either side of the peak to end up with a fairly round overall bar shape once taped. It, too, felt really good. We’re excited to get these in as soon as they come available…likely early next year.

The ends of the drop bars are finished in a woven carbon fiber for a bit more impact resistance in the event of a wreck. Parret says the UD fibers in the rest of the bar are very stiff but not as good at handling impacts, hence the woven end sections.

2013 LH Thomson alloy downhill mountain bike riser handlebars

The alloy DH riser handlebars use a special process to create the bends that results in a smooth finish that doesn’t require any post-production grinding or smoothing to get this result.

We’ll be meeting up with them within a few weeks or so to get some first rides on most of these components, so stay tuned!

Comments

Sir Eddy - 08/30/12 - 6:37pm

Direct mount post? don’t you mean stem?

Dropper post looks great. proof is in the riding but weight and design seem solid. Better than Fox’s effort …

jezzy - 08/30/12 - 6:41pm

looks great, but t’s too bad the cable doesn’t feed into the collar instead of by the seat. No matter how many positives, there will always be that negative holding it back… That and I think the remote lever is a bit bigger than necessary.

Ricky Bob - 08/30/12 - 6:55pm

I’m sure the ability to easily switch between remote and seat mounted lever had something to do with the cable connection.

Pup Tentacle - 08/30/12 - 7:30pm

There’s plenty of ways around the “problem” of the cable running to the head. A pair of zip ties will let you make a nice tight feed loop for the cable to pass through, you can place the loop wherever you like to deal with the cable as the post moves down. If you’re trying to lower your seat 4″ or more and you find the loop too big, maybe try adjusting your riding? You shouldn’t need that big a drop. XC World Cup courses these days are more technical than many people’s regular trails and they run at full climb height all around the course. World Cup and top amateur DH racers don’t have a seat slammed 5″ down either. Putting your seat all the way down is more a habit you develop rather than a thing you need.

Thomson’s Eurobike information explains why the cable is located at the head. Either trust them, or show them where they’re wrong! Complaining it should be elsewhere isn’t showing them that their design, their engineering, is wrong. It’s just like saying you like a different flavor of ice cream!

PROEDGEBIKER.COM - 08/30/12 - 7:32pm

That is some SEXY Stuff!

mtb - 08/30/12 - 8:20pm

Cool, my POS kronolog should be in the trash by spring time. Then, this will be my next dropper seat post.

CJ - 08/30/12 - 10:29pm

My KS LEV is going to hard to beat. But the Ti bars have my attention.

dave - 08/31/12 - 11:55am

>> You shouldn’t need that big a drop. XC World Cup courses these days are more technical than many people’s regular trails <<

speak for yourself. maybe if you live in florida.

the olympic course was not technical and there were plenty of guys faceplanting hard there, so spare me the crap about xc racers tackling gnarly terrain with the seat up.

Pup Tentacle - 08/31/12 - 12:22pm

Actually I live in the northern Rockies, “dave,” and ride very steep and technical terrain every time I’m on the bike. How much do I drop my saddle? About 2.5″. And only when it’s really steep and hairy. Often it doesn’t get dropped at all. And I’m sure that I’d have no problem staying off the front when descending with you, “dave.”

The Olympics course is not World Cup, “dave.” It’s far from it. Maybe you should talk to some World Cup XC racers some time, “dave.”

So “dave” wrongly assumes I live in flatlandia, wrongly assumes the Olympics course was World Cup caliber, and wrongly assumes he has more skill than I possess.

What a great addition to the thread. Thanks “dave.”

JeffS - 08/31/12 - 1:06pm

I hope Thomson is paying everyone well for all the hype they’re being given.

Not Greg Herbold - 08/31/12 - 2:13pm

It is not “Trelleburg” but “Trelleborg”. It is the name of a small city in Sweden where the company “Trelleborg” makes seals etc.

Devin - 08/31/12 - 2:32pm

Pup Tentacle, you do realize that sneeringly putting “dave” in your post every fifth word makes you look like a colossal asshole? It’s really hard to read without eye-rolling to the point of completely disregarding your opinion altogether.

GS1 - 08/31/12 - 4:21pm

Devin, +1 Rep for you! Or crap, wrong website!

I love Thomson components, will be very interested in seeing some ride reports on the dropper when it is released.

Jesus Shuttlecock - 08/31/12 - 4:56pm

Is Pup Tentacle Peter Fagerlin? Certainly sounds like him..

Dudemanguybro - 09/01/12 - 10:15am

cool, outsourced internals. not impressive, thomson

Gabe - 09/02/12 - 1:48am

Dropper posts also are sweet if you switch bikes with someone for a ride. Makes it easy to dial in a comfy position. Nothing necessary but still a plus

Rivet - 09/04/12 - 3:14pm

@Jesus. Classic, I was thinking the same thing.

Mindless - 09/04/12 - 8:48pm

@Pup Tentacle – you are so amazing, we are all in awe of your awesome skillz.

For the rest of us, spare the crap – 125mm is what is needed.

RodeGeek - 09/07/12 - 11:10pm

Greg Herbold knows his stuff, as usual. And he’s so old he had to walk to his first bike race!

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