Dropper posts are one of the best things to happen to mountain bikes since the disc brake – until they stop working. Even the best dropper posts can be subject to performance anxiety on occasion, which is why when it came time for SDG to introduce their own dropper post, durability was high on the list of features. Combined with the ability to service the post and a low cost of entry, the SDG Tellis seems like it has a lot going for it if the claims hold up to be true.
To keep the internals as simple as possible, the Tellis uses a sealed cartridge system that is user replaceable for just $44.99. Otherwise, there aren’t that many additional parts – though you can purchase and replace just about everything on the dropper to make it completely user serviceable. According to SDG’s Devyn Pelley, all that’s needed to rebuild the post is a strap wrench, set of allen keys, and a vice.
One of their biggest design goals was to ensure that the seat post was durable, no matter what the conditions. That meant in addition to sending out over 120 different seat posts to riders all over the world for testing over the span of two years, SDG’s Chief Tester Devyn Pelley took things into his own hands. Using a reciprocating linear actuator motor, Devyn set up a dropper post to cycle for six months straight. To ensure that the test was truly torturous, Devyn added a “vat” that contained mud and grit to subject the main seal to a constant barrage of contaminants. All the while, Devyn was testing other posts on his bike in his home trails in Kamloops, BC. SDG claims the Tellis is tested down to -20°C (-4°F) to ensure cold weather performance.
Other parts of the post were selected with durability in mind as well like the 3D forged head which is one piece with the upper shaft to eliminate the potential failure point of a bonded head. While it’s a bit disappointing to not see an I-Beam compatible version of the saddle, SDG wanted their first dropper to be compatible with anyone’s saddles, not just theirs. That’s why it uses a standard two bolt micro adjust clamp that is compatible with round and oval metal & carbon saddle rails.
That green cap on the end is meant to be there – don’t try to pull it off thinking it’s just a protective element. This is where the housing seats into the bottom of the post, with the cable head anchoring into the actuation lever.
That puts the skinny end of the cable up at the lever, where it’s clamped into the Tellis remote via a small grub screw. The lever is fairly well designed with a 1x style paddle, but lacks any ability for adjustment save for rotating the entire lever on the bar. However, what it lacks in adjustability, it makes up for in its light weight (36g) and extremely light touch for actuation.
Currently available in 125mm or 150mm travels, all Tellis models feature infinite stops within the travel range. Both travels are also offered in 30.9 or 31.6mm diameters with claimed weights of 510-573g. Our 31.6mm/125mm dropper post came in at a total of 650g for the entire assembly including uncut Jagwire LEX-SL housing & cable. Now for the best part – the price. AT just $269.99 which includes the lever and Jagwire LEX-SL housing and a stainless cable, the Tellis will be competitive on price alone. And if the durability claims prove to be true, it looks like the Tellis will be worth a look.
- Travel: 125 & 150mm (100mm & 170mm coming late summer)
- Diameter: 30.9 & 31.6mm
- Rail Compatibility: 7x7mm & 7x9mm C/F
- Routing: Internal Only
- Total Lengths: 417mm & 467mm
- Weight: 552g (30.9x150mm), 534g (31.6x125mm), 36g (Lever), 80g (Housing & Cable)
- Warranty: Two Years
- MSRP: $269.99 USD *Includes Lever and Jagwire LEX-SL Housing & Stainless Cable
- Replacement Cartridge: $44.99 USD