With their background in designing suspension and valving internals for some of the big bike companies, the design engineers behind BikeYoke have come back with an actually unique and innovative solution to the dropper seatpost problem. It was a not so subtle hint that they had a dropper post in the works after releasing a couple of better designed remote levers this summer.
But they had been holding off on the big reveal of their dropper that uses a different hydraulic lockout design that eliminates most of the pitfalls of the currently standard Internal Floating Piston layout. Their design allows you to on-the-fly bleed off any air that gets where it shouldn’t be (the most often reason to need for a dropper rebuild), and allows for easy servicing of bushings and guide pins (anti-rotating) at home without opening the hydraulics. Take a closer look, and we’ll try to explain why this is kind of a big deal…
As a little primer as to why BikeYoke went for this different design it helps to explain what the status quo is. Most dropper seatposts use a similar tech solution to sliding up and down and locking in place, relying on a very precise Internal Floating Piston (IFP) that must be perfectly sealed of subject to failure, keeping oil & air separate. When they don’t stay totally sealed, air gets in and your post bounces up and down like a suspension post, necessitating a rebuild, one of droppers’ biggest issues.
Now that level of precision is tough, and requires tight inside and outside tolerances and finishes without imperfection that keep costs high. It also requires tight dynamic seals which often result in stiction in the post, needing to be helped up again.
So to combat that BikeYoke dropped the IFP design all together for their Revive. Instead they went with a design that is more simple, and lets excess air bleed into the shaft instead of into the oil. That means that production is a bit easier, and by incorporating a bleed valve in the head of the post, when air goes where it shouldn’t, and you post gets squishy, you can bleed it out in a couple of seconds tool-free. An added benefit is that they were able to use just 2 dynamic seals, for super smooth movement and no friction sticking, and still get a hydraulic setup that is more stable and longer lasting.
The key feature is of course that Revive valve, or reset button on the head. Press it, and drop the post by hand and the hydraulic circuit is totally reset. Back to good as new without having to even take the dropper off the bike.
The Revive also builds in a bit more strength/stiffness by mounting the upper bushing right to the lower tube instead of an add-on cap for better performance with the same stack height. The one-piece lower tube also lends better alignment for the 6 keyed pins that keep the post from rotating.
Still, it is a dropper, so it will need some service over time. But BikeYoke has designed the Revive so that the bushings and keyway pins that will wear out with use are as user-serviceable as possible. They can both be swapped out without messing with the hydraulics and can be done by anyone who can operate a set of retaining ring pliers in about 5-10 minutes.
The Revive dropper post will come in two travel lengths, 125 & 160mm, and in two seatpost diameters for each travel: 30.9 & 31.6mm. They can be operated by either a 1x specific remote like BikeYoke’s Triggy that takes the place of a left shifter, or an old-style up/down push button remote.
The 125mm dropper in 30.9mm diameter is claimed to weigh 470g, while the remote without cables adds another 25g.
BikeYoke’s Revive dropper post is slated to be available in January/February 2017, in time for early spring riding. They will be offering a pre-order deal that will open up just after Eurobike in a couple of weeks that will run throughout the month of September. Anyone who pre-orders then will lock-in a post for the beginning of the year delivery and is said to expect some freebies thrown in with their order. Pricing on the pre-order has been set at 350€ for the 125mm travel version and 370€ for the longer 160mm version. Both prices include a Triggy remote, a free I-Spec adapter or Shifty SRAM pulley, and an upgrade to ti saddle clamp bolts. They are also inclusive of German/EU VAT and free worldwide shipping.