Manitou Jack Dropper Post NSMB Andrew Major (9)
TEARDOWN | EDITORIAL

Manitou Jacks BikeYoke's REVIVE Dropper Post

Words Andrew Major
Photos Andrew Major (Unless Noted)
Date Jul 15, 2022
Reading time

Badging What You Believe In

I've been thinking about the Haro DHR for a while now. Going back to my piece about crate rear suspension actually. The DHR was built by Intense and raced by Greg Minnaar in 1998. Pro DH racers riding rebadged Intense bikes was not a new concept - Tomac, Donovan, Henderson, Lopes, etc. all did it. The difference was that in every other case of an Intense DH frame being raced by a rider sponsored by another brand, it stopped there. Only Haro actually sold their Intense-made DH bikes as production models. Not only that, it wasn't simply an M1 but rather a unique frameset with design tweaks they specified, most notably an adjustable seat mast.

Instead of having Minnaar ride an M1 while trying to sell their own platform like so many tire brands with unlimited Sharpie budgets, Haro sold what they clearly thought was the fastest bike on the circuit. Like if Kona re-launched their Scratch & Sniff mountain bike tires but the front was just a re-patched Assegai and the rear was a DHRII. Or, maybe more like if Race Face wanted to do a limited run of Made In Canada cranks and they were North Shore Billet arms with a Cinch interface instead of using SRAM 3-Bolt.


There is not much more to say about it other than that there are some companies whose competition you value and respect, and others you don't because they just screw you over whenever they can.

When I pulled the Manitou Jack dropper post out of the box, I savoured the realization that, at least externally, it was a BikeYoke Revive. I've played with plenty of BikeYoke posts and put together teardown pieces on both the Revive and Divine in the past, but I have only limited trail time on what many riders consider to be the smoothest dropper post as well as a leader on quality and endurance.

Suffice to say that Manitou could have, maybe even should have from a bean-counting perspective, just followed the standard route of sticking a Wintek-cartridge in a dropper post chassis with their logo on it. Considering how excellent and unique feeling the Dominion brakes are, and how good their current suspension fork lineup is, they clearly have the engineering capability to design their own system. But to what end? More travel, smoother action, shorter length, simpler service? At the same time, from folks I've talked to it's clearly important for suspension brands to also have a dropper post in their lineup. I suspect that we'll see products bearing the moniker of the likes of Formula, EXT, SR Suntour, Öhlins, and a fully redesigned DVO in the near future.

BikeYoke's Revive has been out for ages so it unfortunately falls into that category of product that doesn't get written about because it's not being updated yearly. The news here is not that it's a great choice in a premium dropper post but rather that Manitou is agrees with that assessment to the extent that they've badged it as their own. I find Sacki at BikeYoke to be rather unique in how straight up and forthcoming he is about what's going on with their product - see his comments on my Sagma review for example - so I reached out to him for a quote first:

"I've known the folks at Hayes/Manitou for a long time (had some great years with Sean McNally when I lived in Taiwan and Christian Bartik is still one of my favourite fellows in the industry) and when they reached out regarding re-evaluating their dropper line-up and asked whether they could obtain our REVIVE from us to replace their current products, it was a no brainer for me. Hayes is a cool brand and they're always doing their own thing and that I like and value. There is not much more to say about it other than that there are some companies whose competition you value and respect, and others you don't because they just screw you over whenever they can."

Manitou Jack Dropper Post NSMB Andrew Major (8)

The Revive function is a hydraulic reset that de-spongefies the post instantly if it goes all sproingy.

Manitou Jack Dropper Post NSMB Andrew Major (3)

Manitou currently has the Jack available in 80mm, 160mm, and 185mm in both 30.9 and 31.6.

I also talked to Phil at Manitou about the choice of using the Revive:

"A key feature of all Manitou product is user serviceability.  We see BikeYoke as a leader in the dropper post market not only with user serviceability but also unique features like the Revive function and the 80mm dropper post.  Having a rebuildable cartridge vs a single use throw away cartridge helps keep the post (and the rider) on the trail longer with less overall waste and quicker service.  We are very impressed with the design and function of the dropper post."

For the competent home wrench, the Revive is a relatively easy product to fully teardown and rebuild. I hesitate the use the word 'requires' here because someone will want to prove me wrong, but here goes. A basic clean and grease of the keys, seal, and sliding service just requires a pair of circlip pliers. For a full teardown the best practice is to use a vice and shaft clamps. Still, compared to a Reverb or a Transfer/Turbine R, this is child's play with shockingly few parts and limited steps.

Manitou Jack Dropper Post Teardown SuspensionWerx NSMB Andrew Major (13)

The keys to success are, well... six long brass keys. This is why your friend's Revive post has such limited play compared to most other posts on the market after a similar number of hours.

Setup

I'm most happy with a dropper in the 180mm range. I'm fine with a 170mm post and I don't complain about longer setups but I've ridden enough now to know that 7" of drop is my sweet spot. With my relatively tall SQLab saddle, relatively thin OneUp pedals, and relatively long 175mm crankset, the 185mm Jack is within a couple of millimeters of being too long. That's due to the insertion depth being limited by the manipulated seat tube on my Marin Riftzone.

The Jack is oh-my smooth but if I had to choose between running a 160mm Manitou dropper post and an admittedly less refined feeling 180mm OneUp V2 on local terrain, I'd be choosing the OneUp. This is unlikely to ever be a decision that tall folks or those with long, straight, seat tubes have to worry about but it's a good reminder to measure twice and order once for the rest of us.

Also, as with any dropper post that has adjustable air pressure, I recommend checking the air pressure before installing your saddle. It's almost inevitable that the post is due for a couple of pumps. With the Revive post it's also a good idea to grab a 4mm hex key and cycle the REVIVE function when you first install the post. I'll also mention here that it's totally normal for the post to compress a tiny amount when you sit on it (we're talking about 1mm) which 99.5% of BikeYoke owners reading this probably didn't notice previously, and which you will never notice on the trail.

Manitou Jack Dropper Post NSMB Andrew Major (12)

Actuation feels wonderful both with the stock Manitou remote and the standard-throw Wolf Tooth ReMote that I tried. It comes at the cost of quite a long mechanism descending from the base of the post.

Manitou Jack Dropper Post NSMB Andrew Major

Even with a relatively small seal head, the 185mm Jack takes up a lot of real estate. The trail-to-rail height is 517mm (290mm below the seal head) where my 180mm OneUp is 480mm (267mm below the seal head).

(Good) Remote Included

As with BikeYoke, pricing on the Jack varies a bit by travel. The 80mm and 160mm versions sell for 400 USD and the 185mm is 435 USD. One thing that's important to note when comparing dropper post prices is the status of a remote. Does the post include a remote? Is the remote usable or a total POS?

For example, a current Fox Transfer post sells for 310 USD or 360 USD depending on your choice of a Kashima or anodized shaft but neither option includes a remote. This means you'll need to add about 70 USD for either Wolf Tooth's ReMote, a PNW Loam Lever, or Fox's own remote. There's a lot of hot garbage out there in dropper remote land.

Manitou doesn't sell the current Jack dropper remote separately at this time but it would be interesting to see what it would list for if they did. It would work great with any posts like the Fox/RaceFace, Marzocchi or PNW that don't need a lot of leverage to actuate nicely. It's a very good remote that is MatchMaker compatible with three positions like the OneUp V2, which makes for a lot of side-to-side adjustment for the perfect position. I've mounted it, with the included clamp, mated with Magura, Hayes, and Formula brake levers and compatibility is not an issue, in my preferred position, even though it sits very close to the bar. Some riders may prefer to run it off a MatchMaker clamp though.

The cable and housing combination that Manitou includes in the box with the Jack post is not what I excepted to see, having setup a number of BikeYoke posts. It consists of a 3mm, rather than 4mm, Jagwire housing set with a tiny 0.8mm cable included. Rather than using a barrel at the post end like a Revive does, this Jagwire post has an integrated head.

The 3mm housing is said to reduce friction and also ease installation with internally routed frame. The cable does move very smoothly in the housing though I suspect it will be easier to kink which will eliminate any reduction in drag. Paranoia, sans any evidence, prevented me from installing this setup. I've never had a head rip off a dropper post cable, there just isn't that much leverage going on, but if I ever did the 3mm housing would be too tight to accept a standard shifter cable and it's doubtful that I'll be able to find a 0.8mm cable on short notice. BikeYoke, and equivalent, cable clamps are readily available and inexpensive (SRP ~ 4 CAD) so I picked up one to run with this post using my standard 4mm housing and 1.1mm cable setup. I'd love it if Manitou included one in the box, or an extra 0.8mm cable just for peace of mind.

Jagwire has been selling their Flex-SL housing Pro Dropper Kit for a while now, with 0.8mm inner cable, and I couldn't find any reports of problems so I'll acknowledge that this is my issue rather than something anyone buying a Jack post, or Jagwire cable kit, need concern themselves with.

Manitou Jack Dropper Post NSMB Andrew Major (10)

The integrated post-end cable head is faff-free compared to the usual Revive, or similar, cable clamp setup. It's very easy to track down a cable clamp if preferred.

Manitou Jack Dropper Post NSMB Andrew Major (11)

I've never heard of any issue with Jagwire's Lex-SL 3mm dropper housing an 0.8mm cable setup, but wasn't willing to lock my own bike into the system.

REVIVING

I have friends who have years of riding on their Revive posts with no maintenance done beyond pulling out a hex key and hitting the REVIVE function occasionally and topping up the air pressure to around 250psi. Other folks I know service them, or have them serviced, at a similar interval to their forks and shocks, which is what BikeYoke recommends. If you can do your own fork lower service or service brakes then you're golden to rebuild the Jack. It's not an expensive product to have serviced compared to other rebuildable droppers on the market. A basic service just requires some Slickoleum. An 18 USD service kit replaces the keyways and wiper seal to keep things tight and clean. A 20 USD o-ring kit is needed for the full gut.

BikeYoke recommends their own 'Sanguine' hydraulic fluid and at this time Manitou isn't selling a version of it. To keep the stock performance any full synthetic 5W oil should be close-enough-is-good enough. The job is easy enough as to encourage experimentation and I know at least one person running lighter weight oil with a favourable result. For the purpose of this piece I asked James at SuspensionWerx to walk me through the teardown. SWerx doesn't service or support any Manitou products, but they're the local service center for BikeYoke.

My first question was, is it exactly the same inside? The answer is yes.

A couple of tricks to note. It's best to store and transport your bike with your post compressed a bit, say an inch or so. This helps the system deal with temperature variations between where you store your bike and outside by giving the oil room to expand. It's the solution to the odd complaint you'll read about someone's Revive locking out temporarily.

I was chatting REVIVE mechanism with another rider the other day who noted, through a series of unfortunate events entirely of his creation, he ended up needing to use the REVIVE function to raise and lower his post rather than a remote. I'm not certain that I've heard or read this elsewhere but it does legitimately work. So, say you have a few kids, and work on your bike at night when you're tired, with a few wobbly pops, and you fully forget to put your remote back on and it's sitting on your bench and you're at the trailhead? As long as you have a 4mm hex then this post has you covered.

Manitou Mezzer NSMB AndrewM (21).JPG

I had such a great experience riding the Manitou Mezzer and I think it's one of the best looking forks on the market to boot.

Manitou R7 Pro NSMB Andrew Major

I've been riding the R7 for a while. It's a lightweight 32mm stanchion XC-Race fork that Manitou says is "Down For Whatever."

My plan now is to ride the Manitou Jack as I would any other product though I expect it's going to be super smooth through whatever period of time and totally faultless beyond potential fitment issues if I try to put it into anything with less insertion depth than my Marin. Boring right? But the awesome kind of boring. It's the polar opposite of routing hydraulic cables through a headset bearing. It's Haro getting Intense to build them a wicked fast, wicked good looking, DH bike instead of, well, you can only imagine. Actually, you don't have to imagine, you can just Google '1997 Giant ATX One DH' and reconcile that with the fact that Tomac raced an M1 that year.

In the meantime, I'm stoked with the route that Hayes has chosen to travel here. The new Manitou Jack dropper is oh-so-smooth, includes a solid remote, comes in 30.9 and 31.6 sizes, and sells for 400 USD for the 80mm and 160mm versions and 435 USD for the 185mm version I'm riding.

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Comments

sacki
sacki
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+5 Andrew Major Niels van Kampenhout Pete Roggeman DancingWithMyself dhr999

Andrew, as usual, a very entertaining and pleasant to read, very elaborate and technically excellently executed article. I very much appreciate this.

I would, however, like to let everyone know that service on (y)our posts - even if it may work for years without issues for one or the other of you - is extremely important. Water is the worst enemy of a post and every frame likes to collect water over time. So do not miss out on giving your post at least a lower tube service once in a while and especially before putting it to sleep after the final bike wash before the hibernating months. 

Thank you all for the kind words about our post and for supporting our humble brand.

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+2 Niels van Kampenhout DancingWithMyself

Cheers, Sacki. Quick question for us year-rounders here in the rainforest where a lot of riders struggle with maintenance intervals (maybe it's not just here?) you're recommending 100hr/yearly once a year and lower service more often (like a suspension fork?).

I like to follow best practices and the service is easy enough.

Reply

sacki
sacki
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+4 Niels van Kampenhout Pete Roggeman DancingWithMyself Andrew Major

As a manufacturer, we stipulate a lower tube service interval of 100hrs. A full rebuild, however, is not part of a routine/regular service and not bound to a fixed time interval. You only need to do it, if something is not working properly anymore, hydraulically. When customers ask me personally, I'll tell them to do a first lower tube service after like 2-3 months and there is no need for service parts at that time. Just take off lower tube, clean, regrease, put back together, then beer. If all looks good, then extend service intervals.

A lower tube service takes literally less than 10 minutes and can be done from anyone who has not two left hands. Posts are often forgotten when it comes to service, and while one post can survive without service for several years, another might be rotten/corroded within weeks just because one forgot to drain the water off his frame after a wash.A lower tube service takes literally less than 10 minutes and can be done from anyone who has not two left hands. Posts are often forgotten when it comes to service, and while one post can survive without service for several years, another might be rotten/corroded within weeks just because one forgot to drain the water off his frame after a wash.

So I can only advice to take out your post once in a while a do a quick clean and regrease of the lower tube. It should be more often than you service your fork or shock (I do not bring these to service every 100 hrs *duckandrun*), because posts (any post) are naturally not sealed from environments, as a fork or shock is. Posts have breathing ports to allow for air go in and out of the lower tube during drop/extension.

Here is a link to the official service schedule:

https://www.bikeyoke.de/media/products/Bikeyoke_Service_all_posts.pdf

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

Then… beer? Are you sure?!

Hahahaha

Reply

DancingWithMyself
DancingWithMyself
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

I'll never get buying really nice suspension, droppers, hubs, etc. and then not taking care of them.  Can you imagine some saying, "This is my Porsche I bought two years ago.  I haven't changed the oil once!"

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

I mean, I can totally imagine that. Hahahaha.

But, on the flip side, car companies are stricter on service = warranty than the bike world. Though some suspension brands are coming around to it. The auto industry doesn’t warranty crash damage either.

Reply

SomeBikeGuy
SomeBikeGuy
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+4 Andrew Major Andy Eunson Pete Roggeman DancingWithMyself

I'm confused. This is a high end, high performance dropper post with completely serviceable internals that doesn't require a nitrogen charge, a significant amount of labour time, a ton of new seals, o-rings and parts, and a total bill for it all of $200+ for every service?!? BUT HOW?!

I was planning on replacing my RF Turbine R post with a OneUp post when it was time for a service but BikeYoke might just be a better option.

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 SomeBikeGuy

HAHAHAHA. In addition to being very smooth and easy to service, the Revive/Jack also comes with all the free sass, sarcasm, and cynicism you can express before your friends/loved ones beat you to death with whatever dropper post they're riding. 

I think in the name of generating interesting material and driving home the ease of service I'll do another teardown for the final review but get my kid to do all the work. 

There are a lot of reasons that OneUp is the dominant post locally (max drop / minimum insertion / great customer service / really nice folks) and if the drop/insertion aren't an issue for you they get strong competition on the other two fronts this post (under whichever name). Clearly, the Revive/Jack wins on serviceability, ease of maintenance, and smooth action.

Reply

SomeBikeGuy
SomeBikeGuy
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

My friends/loved ones seem to mostly ride Reverbs and Fox/RF posts, so their droppers are usually out for service and therefore unavailable to use as weapons to beat me with. Do all those annoying child labour laws allow you to use a child to perform a seat post tear down? Or is it dependent on how easy of a tear down it is?

No hate for the OneUp post whatsoever. It remains a solid option for when I'm due for that $200+ service bill courtesy of a Fox service centre. Nice to have a second option if I'm feeling baller.

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 SomeBikeGuy

Hahahahaha. And when they come back from service the suspension-level service investment makes them too precious for a proper beat down anyway?

Child labour laws?! Two words:

‘Family Business.’

Reply

SomeBikeGuy
SomeBikeGuy
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

"Ff" they come back from service, yes. You don't beat people with a $1000 post, unless it's a wireless Reverb because that's just way, way easier to take out of the frame to use as a weapon.

"Family business" = you're in the mob, aren't you?

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

Ha. I can’t even imagine. 

In all seriousness, prefaced with the fact I’m definitely not a lawyer, youth labour law typically doesn’t apply to unpaid work, casual work, or work in a family business that only employs family members (and I’m my only employee) so I think I’m covered! 

If the CRA comes after her about their % of her compensation that may be a problem because I already parent-tax all her treats. Between me and the government her take home may be a lot of 1/2 popsicles.

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

Also have to say, riding a wrenching with kids is the best. Totally mind opening and lots of fun. Highly recommended even for people that don’t have their own. Just borrow one!

DancingWithMyself
DancingWithMyself
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

OneUp is a good post, but if you don't need the help from the OneUp to get the drop you want and have the coin, the Revive is in a league of its own.  But be warned, you will be completely ruined.

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

You’re not not dancing with yourself in having that opinion. 

All things considered, I think Manitou made a great choice here. As boring as that may be from a product testing perspective. Haha.

Reply

Ripbro
Ripbro
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+3 Andrew Major bushtrucker ohio

Just rebuild my bike yolk this past winter, and it’s as easy as you said. I used motorex 2.5wt suspension fluid. You do need to fully take it apart if your going to be adding some oil, as some gets trapped after you have dumped what appears to be all of it out. Great product.

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

Do you find it a lot faster with the 2.5WT or same-same? 

Did you do the full o-ring kit and/or keyway + seal kit or did you rebuild it with the existing parts?

Reply

Ripbro
Ripbro
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+2 bushtrucker ohio

I found it very similar and I rebuilt it with existing parts. The fluid was very clean, everything was in good shape. I thought I should give it some love, and was curious how it worked. I’ll order some new parts when I service it again in a couple years.

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 bushtrucker

"...when I service it again in a couple years."

Sometimes it's crazy to think about how far (some) dropper posts have come. I feel like in many cases rider expectations are just catching up.

Reply

bushtrucker
bushtrucker
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+3 Andrew Major Pete Roggeman Niels van Kampenhout

Great to see this. The Revive is such a great post that it's honesty makes it hard to use others. And having more copies/versions of the same post out there has gotta be great from a future-proof / ongoing servicing point of view too. More spares and more people who know how to work on them. This coming from someone with over 100 hrs on a 213mm Revive over the last 12 months. Yet to touch anything but the reset button a few times.

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

It is crazy smooth. Yeah, I didn’t deal the “why would I buy a Jack vs. Revive” but generally it means more/better distribution and service for riders. 

We’re quite lucky with BikeYoke here as Orange Sport does a solid job of stocking posts/parts and SWerx is working on them. It gets expensive shipping bits and kits from Europe. 

———

I’m curious if you plan to service it/get it serviced on a similar interval to your suspension or just ride it? It’s the question I ask everyone with a BikeYoke I see.

Reply

metacomet
Metacomet
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+2 Andrew Major Pete Roggeman

The level of information shared here is just awesome.  I’ve always really liked all the bike yoke droppers I’ve played with on other peoples bikes, but I’ve never owned one myself.  The extra short overall length for max-drop of the one-ups has always won me over.  BUT, because of all the information shared here, and the mention that you can actuate this post with a hex key through the revive function, sans remote, may have just put me in the market for one.  This functionality could be the solution to putting a long dropper on my DH bike since it was obviously not designed with internally routed dropper posts in mind.  I’ve been waiting for a remote-less dropper for that exact application, and had no idea it already existed.

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Metacomet

Cheers! It’s a neat bonus feature (although, I wouldn’t think twice about drilling a cable exit port in any frame that’s not carbon).

Yes, I was laughing about this doing bike maintenance yesterday. 

I have my 180mm OneUp dropper (31.6) on my Walt V2 where I don’t even have seat tube bosses so my insertion depth is basically limitless and I have a plenty of room above the collar to run more travel if I wanted.

I have the 185mm Manitou Jack (30.9) on my Rifty where the kink in the seat tube conspires to make fitment a tight enough game that saddle rail height could matter. 

Not the my OneUp is brilliant or doesn’t do it’s job. But going back/fourth between them the smoothness of Jack is quite glorious.

Reply

metacomet
Metacomet
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

No reservation about drilling holes in frames, but this is an Aurum HSP, so really not an option.  Not totally certain how well the insertion/extension/dropped height/extended height combo will work with the revive anyway, but there’s a chance! Will have to take some measurements.  The bike has decent insertion depth with the shape of the seatmast, so I’m fairly hopeful some combo might work. 

This would be sweet to make some areas more accessible with the DH bike, and be a 2 second job to take it off and put the fixed post back on for straight DH days.

Reply

just6979
Justin White
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

KS and maybe Easton make remote-free droppers. Could also find a place to mount/strap a remote to the front triangle somewhere for something like a KS or PNW external cabled post. I've actually seen that both for droppers to avoid holes and extra cable, and for rear shifting with a gyro on the rear brake to allow tailwhips.

Reply

just6979
Justin White
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Hbar

I tried the Dropper Pro cable, just because it was in stock. My Stumpy's routing isn't crazy bendy, maybe a 3 inch radius bend at the BB at the tightest, and it's in a tube through the whole bend, so I didn't really notice much benefit from the thin housing.

But the 0.8mm cable is hard to clamp: the provided sleeve (just a piece of heat shrink I think) works ok, but both WolfTooth and OneUp levers needed a pretty snug cable clamp to hold it solidly, and I was a bit worried about overtorquing that bolt (I broke an e13 lever's cable bolt once). And the sleeve immediately gets shredded so it's kinda only good for a couple clampings.

And then after maybe a month or two, the barrel end just broke off... It was rainy season, so potentially decent moisture inside my frame (one deficit to in-frame storage: frequent washes usually mean a bit of dampness inside that eventually requires taking everything out and letting it air out), and the cable seemed discolored at the break, but even so, shouldn't be breaking after single digit weeks, or even months. 

Between the potential for a replacement cable to not fit, the need for extra bits at the lever clamp, and the weakness, I was not impressed. Right back to Shimano housing and stainless cables for me.

Reply

BadNudes
BadNudes
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

I see what you're doing, planting the seed for a RF/NSB Crank collab... Is there a link to a Kickstarter or something?

Thanks for the review; no stone unturned with a few chewy bits to mull over. If we saw more of this honest rebadging, maybe the Ripoff&Duplicate  dept's budget cut could mean a lower MSRP? Other hand, more choice is always better? The dropper market is kind of unique that way for me, I'm either going to get the best post (Revive), the most drop/best fit (OneUp), or the best deal (usually also OneUp). I think I'm okay with only 2 options here. Maybe also a good made in Canada option (9point8?)

I found Manitou Phil's note about the 80mm feature leading the industry kind of funny. I have a 75mm Giant branded post from 2013 in a box somewhere, from back when the long travel option was 100. But hey, cool that gravel roadies are starting to figure it out. Maybe I could finally sell this thing..

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 BadNudes

Groadies, XC-Race, and kids.

An interesting note on kids’ posts. OneUp appears the obvious winner (20mm travel adjust, dimensions) but I have to run the post at ~ 1/2 recommended pressure and keep it very smooth for my daughter to be able to compress it and for it to return. 

A BikeYoke/Jack or a coil-sprung post like the EastFoxFace groad post could make more sense for some parents some places. 

———

Hahaha. I’m always going to be poking legacy brands, maybe brands in general about doing small-batch MNA stuff but the NSB/RF cranks was an off the cuff thing. 

I’d really like to see an NSB/OneUp pedal collab. I think the Daemon is awesome. I also think the two very different shapes serve different riders/purposes. Some editorial coming on that and my experience relearning to pedal in a couple or few weeks. 

———

I was going to talk more about price in the piece but sort of stalled out on wording. What I wanted to say was the Revive was a premium post with a premium price when it came out (a lot of years ago) but now, even ignoring the price ceiling set by Reverb AXS, the difference in price isn’t as impressive. 

I listed the Fox post + remote vs. the Jack with (good) remote included but you can math out lots of examples where now the Revive is still a premium post (in addition to being so simple) but the relative premium paid is much lower. 

I’d love to see less variety for variety sake and more collaborations if it meant better product at a better price though.

Reply

shoreboy
Shoreboy
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

No 125mm version? That seems like a bit of a miss...

Reply

niels@nsmb.com
Niels van Kampenhout
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+2 Andrew Major Pete Roggeman

Also no 213 mm it seems.

FWIW the 213 mm Revive I reviewed is still going strong after almost 2 years. I had it serviced at SWerx in April and the invoice said "Lower bushings cracked // Replaced" but I hadn't noticed anything.

Reply

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Niels van Kampenhout

Yeah, mentioned in comment to @Shoreboy. I believe they started with the three sizes that will be most popular and will add more sizes as the project/product proves successful. 

I know a few riders who are really happy with their 213 BikeYoke posts but like that 125mm window it seems like once riders want All The Drop (I.E. want to get above ~180mm) they want all the drop and the thing to do is buy a 240mm OneUp dropper and shim it down the minimum amount possible?

I’d actually be really curious to read your comparative take on a 240mm dropper Niels. On the one hand it’s 27mm more drop which is huge if I think about it in terms of a 160mm v. 185mm post (an experience I can relate too) but on the other hand it’s proportionally a much smaller % change.

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niels@nsmb.com
Niels van Kampenhout
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

I'd have to try the 240 mm but intuitively I feel like I have more than enough space to move with ~200 mm drop. I think it also depends on the geometry of the bike it's on. 160 mm had felt like enough until I jumped on the longish reach + steep STA bandwagon.

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AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

Steeper actual STAs definitely have fueled the long dropper movement. And, they've also helped with their resilience since bikes with slacker actual STAs eat more dropper posts. 

------

Yeah, I think that's why it would be an interesting piece to read. I was (and usually still am) fine on a 160mm post but prefer 180mm. Longer than that and I get nothing out of it in terms of improved confidence, control, clearance, etc. Or, put another way, I get plenty of bike-body separation at 180mm. 

It might be exactly the same with you and a 213mm post, but if you rode a 240mm I think naturally you'd still find yourself slamming it all the way. If I have a 190mm or 200mm post that's what I do at least. But where I'd ride a 180mm post and going back to 160mm required a learning curve, I can ride a longer post, and going back to 180mm is perfectly intuitive. 

If you ride half a dozen times on the 240mm and then put the 213mm back on what do you notice? The Revive is going to be smoother, the OneUp is going to be longer, what's the end game?

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Wander89
Carl Herbst
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+2 Andrew Major Niels van Kampenhout

Bit late, but I do.

I'm 190cm/6'3" with XL frames, and have a 213 revive on my Druid, but a 240mm OneUp on my new '22 Rocky Element.

I was really excited with the tease y'all had of the 225+ revive a while ago, and was super bummed when Sacki said they weren't gonna be for sale.

The revive is the clearly superior post in how it feels and how smooth it actuates etc, and while the difference from 213 to 240 is not as life changing as when I first went from 150 to 210, it's still noticeable and worth it.

I do think 240 is approaching the limit I'd care about, if Bike Yoke had a 240 and OneUp came out with a 250-260, which would fit in my Element for me if I'm not mistaken, I'd probably still pick the Revive.

What's sad is I had two OneUp cartridges fail in the same week in 2020 and swore them off forever, yet couldn't help myself when the 240 was announced. I miss the smooth actuation and satisfying top out thunk from the revive, but not as much as I appreciate the extra drop swapping back and forth. Druid's replacement will get another OneUp unless someone else comes along :(

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Carl Herbst

Thank you for sharing your experience, @Carl.

A couple of different dropper post manufacturers have told me they thought if the 34.9 seat post diameter caught on we'd see a number of longer posts being developed. 

I believe if the industry had just called it the 35mm seat post size (credit to Joel Smith for the idea) that it would have caught on massively and almost every new mountain bike on the market today - steel, aluminum, or carbon - would be using it.

Wander89
Carl Herbst
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

Totally should have just called it 35mm, and have been praying for its unification as the One True Dropper Post Diameter for some time with other tall friends, it just makes sense. I admit that it might "ruin the lines" of my element's skinny tubes, but that's a price worth paying, gladly, lol. Still hoping that manufacturers catch on, seems like more and more slowly are.

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

It seems that more and more companies are getting on board with 34.9. I think companies doing longer posts in 30.9/31.6, and the 34.9 v. 35mm name, has delayed it quite a bit but there's still a certain inevitability to it.

AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

I’ll follow up about it for the future but my guess is they started with BikeYoke’s three best selling sizes. Hence no 34.9 posts either.

Again, no inside knowledge, but I suspect the lineup will grow as long as Jack is a success.

———

I don’t know anyone buying a 125mm post aftermarket that doesn’t have to for space constraints in which case OneUp wins every time.

80mm version covers XC / Gravel. 160mm & 185mm cover lengths most riders buy. 30.9/31.6 still by far the most common dimensions.

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shoreboy
Shoreboy
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

I guess my wife is in the minority then? Small size bike, and about 5'4". 80mm not enough, 160mm too long. BikeYoke is superior to a OneUp in my opinion, so thats the post I would be looking for.

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AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

If a 125mm post works for her and a BikeYoke fits her frame that’s great - I’m not saying no one ever purchases that combination and I addressed OneUp v. BikeYoke in the piece in terms of the trade off in travel for smoothness - or I should say the almost trade off since I’m using the 185mm Jack with millimeters to spare.

But on a small frame where above and below seat collar heights are often close calculations a OneUp post is going to deliver at minimum 1-2cm more drop (likely more). So if your wife did want more than 125mm travel then OneUp would certainly deliver that (whether the rear wheel clears the saddle at bottom out is also worth checking).

I imagine if the three sizes they’re selling do well then Manitou will fill in the Jack lineup by adding the 125mm and 213mm versions.

———

I recognize I can only speak for the locale I wrench in and riders in different places have different component demands, but certainly in shops on the Shore, for trail bikes (XC Race being it’s own animal) below ~ 160mm of drop every rider I’ve dealt with wants to know the most drop they can fit on their bike above every other metric.

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Vikb
Vik Banerjee
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

Let's be honest if there hasn't been recent breathless product announcements/reviews dropped across 10 MTB sites and 40 social media influencers synchronized to with 1min of each other the product is basically obsolete isn't it? What kind scam are you trying to pull on us Andrew?!?!  ;-)

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AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+2 BadNudes Vik Banerjee

Hahahaha. 

It’s been pointed out to me that if you just read the beginning and the end, this piece isn’t even about dropper posts but rather just trolling Giant for the shitty DH bike they were selling in 1997. 

Hahahaha.

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andy-eunson
Andy Eunson
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

I’m so glad that I’m short and 142 pounds so I don’t need a long dropper and put less stress on any post. My Reverb is heading into its 5th season with zero problems. If and when it dies I won’t replace it with another but Oneup is high on my list because of price, parts availability and ease of service. I’d consider a Bikeyoke too. I assume bigger riders have more issues with droppers than small guys like me.

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AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andy Eunson

Service every 100hrs? Most of the Reverb issues I've seen with the later generations are either people expressing their experiences (or what they heard) from a decade+ ago or posts that have been run into the ground. 

If you're going to run a post straight through until it's slag I still don't think you can beat a Wintek-cartridge system.

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andy-eunson
Andy Eunson
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

I bled the remote in the first week because the shop didn’t do it right. That’s it. The cost to have it serviced is $140 at Melius (and they may not be doing them any longer) or $115 at Fluid Function plus the gas to drive about 200 km there and back twice. Plus any parts beyond a normal service kit whatever that might mean. The rebuild kit for my Oneup cost me $20 at Coastal Culture. Included the bushings and collar with seal and brass pins. Oneup seem to stock the parts too although I haven’t needed more than that kit. Reliability and ease of service at home are what most of us want.

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Pnwpedal
Pnwpedal
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

I have both versions of revive and stand by them being the best damn post on the market. Also surprisingly easy to work on. Manitou rebranding one is such a smart move if they can sell enough to make it worthwhile.

I have no idea why this is a mystery... but I'll also vouch for the Bontrager hubs being made in-house at King. The man himself confirmed it to me, among other first hand evidence.

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AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

I mean, the earth is round right? We (people) have known for millennia before flight was possible. We have millions of images from space. HAHAHA. 

I wish I had one to do a teardown on. I guess anyone can fake some logos on a hub right?

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Carym
Carym
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

My only gripe bout this post is Manitou’s failure to make parts available for the prior Jack post.  I am a Manitou fan, Mezzer on my trail bike, Mattoc/Magnums on my hardtails and wife’s bike, son run a Dorado, but have two prior Jacks with no replacement cartridges available.   Glad they went to Bikeyoke, have two and servicing is easy.

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AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

Are they Wintek cartridges? If you want to message me with some photos (top and bottom) and dimensions (body length and shaft length) I’d be happy to check my notes and see if they’re inter compatible with another post. I’ve taken apart quite a few of those posts from different brands.

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Sebov
Sebov
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

Hmmm… I have a OneUp V2 210 and a Revive 185… and I absolutely love my Revive. It‘s just awesome. Have it since 2019 and serviced it once. Oh oh, Sacki!

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AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

Hahahaha. Get on that service! At least it's relatively fast and easy whether you're doing it or getting a shop to.

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Briain
Briain
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

Have to say Hayes/ Manitou are really knocking it out of the park. If your going to rebrand a product why not pick the best on the market. Also bikeyoke seems to fit in with Manitou's easy self service philosophy. The fact they have said that you don't need to nitrogen charge their damper for their shock is brilliant. Been able to repair your gear without specialist tools or equipment are the brand's we should be supporting. Been quoted €160 to service a reverb and it cost me €140 to get a fox shock serviced is insane that annual service can be 25% of cost of the item

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AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
0

Have you ridden the Mara or Mara Pro? I have a Mara with both sizes of air cans to play with. Just waiting for some reducing hardware and also to get my leg a little stronger so I can properly A|B test.

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Briain
Briain
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Andrew Major

No not yet just found a video when I was changing the travel on my mezzer a few weeks ago. Might be turning into a manitou fanboy. Got a Dorado and now a mezzer the dominions are top of my list for the next brakes and protaper even do a 20° backsweep bars

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AndrewMajor
Andrew Major
2 months, 2 weeks ago
+1 Briain

The Dominions required a bit of a learning curve for me - the action is just so light - but I recommend them regularly. Fantastic brakes. 

I wish they did their 3" ProTaper bar is a bigger sweet. 16° maybe.

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Briain
Briain
2 months, 1 week ago
0

Yeah the problem I have is Manitou/ Hayes stuff is very thin on ground here in Ireland. So trying before I buy is pretty hard. I don't like the feel of Shimano brakes too on/  off. But the Dominions are really well reviewed across the board and l for my weight of 110kg the thicker rotor is the way to go.

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jt
JT
2 months, 1 week ago
+1 Andrew Major

Picked up a Mara Pro to replace the low end Fox unit on my Trance X. Took it apart (just because) and dannng is that one of the easiest shocks to rebuild and bleed, right up there with SRSuntour's TriAir. Extra bonus was they had equalizing chamfers between the pos & neg spring chambers. Given the lack of those was one of the only negatives reviews said about the damper, it really needs to be given another round of testing in media circles.

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