Aaaahhh dropper posts, the accessory that’s becoming ubiquitous across the mountain bike spectrum and across the brand spectrum. Nearly everyone’s got one now, even some bike brands, so it takes something special to differentiate yourself. Fortunately, Fox seems to have learned from their first iteration, the D.O.S.S., and created a solid performer worth a look.
We covered the tech behind the design when it launched, but the short of it is this: Rather than using a cartridge, the hydraulic mechanism is built directly into the post’s body, which let them use higher fluid volume for lower pressures. The result should be better long term durability…something we couldn’t really test on a single ride. Here’s what we can say…
The Performance level Transfer post is, in our guess, going to be the better seller not just because its less expensive, but also because it’s black on black. Kashima’s nice, but this just looks better. And it’ll be replacing the KS LEV on the Pivot Mach 429 Trail effective immediately…which is the bike we rode for this test.
I tested the 125mm travel post, which sits directly in the middle of the 100mm and 150mm options. For me, it’s the right amount of drop since I like to keep the saddle higher up between my legs to help steer the bike in most cases but still be able to get it low enough for extreme descents.
The two bolt saddle clamp virtually guarantees your seat won’t budge. Except for the intended up and down movement, which worked very well. Movement is fluid, even with my full weight on the saddle. Return speed is fairly quick, but the pressure pushing it up is light enough that it’s easy to control when trying to bring the saddle up partially. That, plus the smooth operation, make it very easy to fine tune saddle height between the extremes.
However, when you want it all the way up or down, there’s a very satisfying “thunk” at both ends. It’s pretty easy to tell when the saddle bottoms out, but with some posts, the return to full height is too silent, leaving me wondering if it’s really all the way up. The Fox Transfer leaves no doubt. It’s not obnoxiously (or scarily) loud, but it makes it crystal clear the post is fully extended.
If it can retain that smooth operation over continued use, it’ll be a contender.
The lever is another highlight. You have your choice of levers – this one for universal fit, or a horizontal lever for 1x setups that sits where the front shifter normally would. Each is sold separately, and I might prefer the 1x specific design on my own bike, but compared to other universal fit dropper levers, this one sits in a very ergonomically correct position. I had no trouble reaching or depressing it, even mid-descent. And it pulled the cable easily.
Hopefully we’ll be getting one in for long term testing and a proper weigh in. For now, first impressions are very good.