The real highlight to KS i950-R’s adjustability is that it isn’t an all or nothing deal. You can set the seat height wherever you like within the five inch range. Drop it just a little or slam it till it bottoms out when the going gets rough. For you detail oriented types, the KS i950-R has two bolts, micro adjust saddle clamp and should the need for replacement ever arise, the remote is actuated with a standard shifter cable.
Strengths: when it works it works pretty well with its infinite travel.
Weaknesses: have bought two of these. The first one lasted about 8 rides and then turned into a suspension seat post. I needed another dropper post for an upcoming enduro race. it lasted about a 4 rides and then started to malfunction....but in a diffferent way. If i put too much pressure when trying to put it down it wouldnt go. if i got off the bike and pushed with my hand it would go down. so it still functioned but not optimal. then after a few months that problem went away...not very encouraging.
after buying two of these. I wont be buying another one. from my experience, buy the most reliable dropper post you can find..... I am going with a gravity dropper next.
Strengths: Good lever design
Right after I got mine, it started dropping almost an inch when I put weight on it, but I quickly found a Facebook posting from the KS distributor acknowledging the problem with directions to just send it in for a needed internal fix, no RMA hassles, etc. I got it back in a week and it has performed flawlessly ever since. I did a lot of checking around, and I'm glad I decided on this one. I am probably going to get a LEV for my new bike.
Strengths: Design, ease of use, ability to change my riding performance
Weaknesses: See summary
Had a bad experience with the first post I ordered...after about 5 months the seat started dropping on its own. Took it into the LBS and they said something internal was blown and it would need to be shipped back. That's fine, the 5 months I had it were amazing! However, it did take about 5 weeks to get it returned from KS...long enought that I went out and bought a Cobalt post just so I could ride again. The guy at KS WAS cool about it though, they were just waiting on a part to be shipped in. This all being said, I've been riding much more often and much harder on this post for 9 months now and have no issues whatsoever. I would easily give this post 5 chilis in value/overall rating if I hadn't gotten a lemon the first time around. I bought mine for $70 off MSRP online and I would probably pay the full price again. It adds a pound and puts my RIP9 over the 30lb marker, but it's my favorite part of the bike when the trail gets hairy!
Date Reviewed: July 5, 2012
Strengths: Is great if it works like its supposed to.
Weaknesses: Is not consistently reliable. Cable often needs to be replaced.
I have 2 of these seat posts. One on my mach v which works perfectly, and one on my sx trail 2 which rarely works. The first ks seat post worked perfectly with no problems or failures other then normal cable stretching. The second I got lasted about 2 months before it had to be sent back to the company for rebuilding. It would only use about 2.5 of the 5 inches. After it was returned about a month later it worked for about a month before it started doing the same thing. I also went through cables frequently just because of the constant changing of length of the distance to the seatpost which I expected. I really wanted the post to work but am sick of the problems so went back to the standard seatpost. I will wait a few years to see if they can get any of these more reliable before spending more money.
Patrick R Grier
Date Reviewed: May 25, 2012
Strengths: Adjustable seatpost is a wonderful function to have on all mountain rides.
Weaknesses: Design Flaws, I had several fails when the bolts came loose during rides, once the bolt broke and I lost the rectangular curved washer that is totally unavailable anywhere, my bike shop was kind enough to rob another seatpost to keep me going.
These bolts I am talking about need to be torqued evenly, that's no easy task as no torque wrench I am aware of can get to them as they are too close to the shaft of the post. I fashioned a ball driver extension on a drive socket, but it stripped out eventually, also the bolts.
If the bolts get loose the grooves in the head will get mashed, advancing more damage and noise.
However, between boughts with the fasteners the post I had was reliable except for sticking until it was loosened up lay offs from rideing.
I am a heavy rider, it did not fail.
So go for it if you like.
a All Mountain Rider
from Colorado Springs
Date Reviewed: March 20, 2012
Strengths: Smooth action, lever feel and function. Looks great, really liked the product for about 2 months.
Weaknesses: Seat post will not lock out in the up position, drops about 2.5 inches when I sit on the saddle. I am a skinny guy too!! So I lose half of the functionality of the product. I took it back to the LBS, they had a hard time getting in touch with KS for weeks, I basically forgot about the thing for the entire summer. I went back to the Spec Command Post. The main reason I switched was the infinite adjust of the KS, should have stuck with the Command Post. So I put the KS on a demo bike last weekend. I did not ride it after KS sent it back to me last fall since my Command Post was working. I was saving it for a high end All Mountain build, hence the demo. Well, the stupid thing does the same thing as last year, it doesn’t lock out in the up position. I am VERY disappointed in the LONG time it took for KS to “fix” their expensive product.
Anyone want a GREAT dropper seat post…cheap!!! CRAP company, CRAP product. Save your $$ for a different post.
Similar Products Used: Spec Command Post - Great, simple and works. Gravity Dropper, work, but klunky.
Bike Setup: 29er XX/XO
a All Mountain Rider
from san jose, ca
Date Reviewed: March 12, 2012
The KS i-950R is solid. You can't go wrong with it. The activation is good and there is no play in the post. The lever is well designed and very simple to activate. Fairly lightweight for adjustable seat posts. Looks cool. It serves its purpose to keep the flow in my ride without being stuck in uncomfortable riding position or having to get off my bike to adjust my seat.
I found a few things that were less desirable but minor. The is a bit of stiction in the post especially if there is a little dirt on the post and no lube. Once it is clean and lubed it activates smoothly. I still haven't found a way to adjust the speed of the activation of the post. Adjustable speed is a feature I like and is on the Rockshox Reverb. Also, like most of the posts, the cable routing is not great because the cable goes up and down with the post and can get in the way at times. Some new posts address the cable issue. The biggest issue is that it is not for freeride bikes, it has popped up on big hits and jumps and rode up on me making me nearly crash. Still trying to see if it is an adjustment issue.
Definitely a must have for XC and all-mountain riding. It took me a while to get one but now I can't ride all-mountain rides without it.
a All Mountain Rider
from Seattle area
Date Reviewed: March 8, 2012
Strengths: Quality design, infinite height adjustment, setback (!!!), GREAT lever, uses regular shifter cable, no play side-to-side, easily maintained
Weaknesses: Saddle tilt (preset positions, not microadjustable), have to bump saddle get it moving if it's been in position for a while during the ride, return speed isn't adjustable (would like it quicker), saddle moves up if you pick up the bike by the saddle (was suprised how much I usually do that).
I'm really bummed. I looked at ALL the adjustable seatposts out there and decided this was the best one to meet my needs. I was looking for 1) setback on the seatpost (I fall between a L and XL frame, and ride a L...so the setback puts me in a better all-around position on the bike, 2) infinite height adjustment (looked at the specialized post, but just didn't think one mid-postion would work for me), 3) reliable design (mostly good reviews) - seems they addressed some of the shortcomings of past models with new seals, etc.
When I got it, I was impressed with the quality of the design and build. The lever is really nice and can be used as the inner clamp with ODI grips - I mounted mine on the bar to get the most comfortable position, however.
This is the first post I had tried (I bought a RockShox Reverb at the same time, but put it on my girlfriends bike since it's zero setback - I actually prefer the way the post goes up and down on that one, but wouldn't let me put my saddle back far enough for me...and the lever looked kind of whimpy and asking for trouble if you mounted on top of the bars - fortunately it fit underneath on her bike, so is more protected).
It took me a while to get the hang of adjusting the post on the fly (used more of a flicking of the lever than a push). Once I figured that out, all good.
I can really appreciate the value of having the adjustable height. But I found that I moved the post within only an inch or two at most, including riding technical features and trails (drops, jumps, roots and rocks). It went all the way up for long-ish climbs, and stayed about an inch or so down for 90% of the time. But that 10% all the way up really rocks! If I dropped the seat much below 2 inches, then I found I had less control of the bike. Guess I steer more with the saddle than I realized.
The Deal Breaker: The seatpost uses pre-set tilt positions (interlocking teeth with a clamp bolt), rather than the 2-bolt microadjustment you find on posts like Thompson and the Truvativ I ride now. One position was tilted up just a bit too much, and started causing some discomfort. So I moved it down only a single notch, and found I was sliding forward on the saddle and was putting much more weight on my hands. The Reverb uses the 2-bolt microadjustment, which is really nice. If it didn't actually cause discomfort in the slightly-too-far-up position, I'd keep it. But let's just say certain parts were starting to hurt that a guy really doesn't want to have hurting.
Other downsides are pretty minor (and seem to happen with many other adjustable posts): it's a bit annoying when the post comes up by lifting on the saddle - not a huge deal, but a little annoying. And you have to bump the saddle to get it moving if you've been in one position for a while on the ride. KS does suggest that you cycle the seatpost up and down a few times before you ride, which is fine, but this happens during the ride.
What I Really Want: I'd be super happy with the i950r if they had a 2-bolt microadjustment on the saddle tilt - the minor downsides aren't a big deal. Otherwise, it's a great post. But now it's for sale - bummer. Otherwise it had pretty much everything I wanted... infinite height adjustment, seatback, simple easily-maintained design, standard shifter cable, mechanical (although I really like the hydraulic action on the Reverb), really nice lever design....and it even had red trim, matching my bike.
When I put the regular old seatpost back on the bike, I set the saddle tilt where I thought I'd like it (slightly up from level). It didn't feel quite right, so did a 1/2 turn adjustment on the tilt bolts, and perfect! Guess I'm more picky about tilt than I realized.
I would highly recommend this post to anyone if the saddle tilt position works for them. I'm just not that guy.
Bike Setup: Santa Cruz Butcher, all-mountain components throughout
a All Mountain Rider
from Novato, CA
Date Reviewed: February 11, 2012
Strengths: Works great when it is working. Smooth. Looks good. Handle bar mounted remote is great.
Weaknesses: 4 rides in and complete failure. It became a suspension post. When I first sat on it I felt about 1mm play but as soon as I was seated there was no play at all. On the next ride I felt about a cm of play when first sitting. Next 3 inches. Next 6 inches. I sent it in to be serviced. It has been gone a week and I miss it greatly. I'll update when I get it back. Hope this isn't a sign of what is yet to come.
It is like that girl you know is bad for you, but you just can't get enough. So fun while it lasts but you know any moment you could be in for serious letdown. I like it...but I need it on my bike working. I hate the rigid post now. Gotta have the dropper, but man....4 rides?
a Weekend Warrior
from Irvine, CA
Date Reviewed: January 27, 2012
Strengths: I got this as a Christmas gift and have about 20 rides on it. I love the Versatility... I am a 64 year old mountain biker chasing my 26 year old son and too often I would not lower my post before starting on the downhills to keep from holding him up (waiting for my hike a bike up) and find myself in gnarly situations where I really needed my weight down and back. Now it is just unweight and a touch of the lever and then lower the seat to exactly where I want it. Then back to the flat and up comes the post.
Weaknesses: None yet... I am over 200 lbs and so far so good.
I really like the ability to choose my seating position on the fly... or get it down and out of the way.
Strengths: I love being able to adjust my seat while riding. It makes my bike more efficient in the flat sections and climbs and helps me be more comfortable in the steep descents.
Weaknesses: There's a lot more play than I expected out of this post. This was recommended by many friends so I will see if it's an issue with my post or normal for a KS.
I've only ridden twice on this post and use it way more than I had anticipated. I was told that it becomes natural "like shifting", and it seems to be that way. I like getting the seat out of my way for the steep and or gnarly descents. When in the up position, I gained about an inch or more seatpost knowing that I can slam the seat if needed. I had no idea that this post would change my riding so much. I'll update review after a while of use!
from Newbury Park, CA
Date Reviewed: September 26, 2011
Strengths: Not tried any other seat dropper and when it works it works great. Even with some of its weaknesses it is hard to do without. I like riding my bike a lot less while it is out to be serviced. Any small drop and the seat is down, not because it improves the riding position but moves the seat out of the way to get bigger air.
Weaknesses: In the beginning reliability was a major factor. It so happens that in transporting my bike I use a bike rack that suspends the bike from the handle bar and seat (Yakima Toptube). This put pressure on the air seal inside. So now I always make sure to have the post fully extended when I transport the bike. I also do not fully weight the seat when lowering the seat tube. So since, the last rebuild 3 months ago it works as well as new.
Bought this to complete my new bike, but was quickly the most unreliable piece on it. Had to have it rebuilt 2x initially. Would first develop 1/4 inch play (up/down), then 1 inch and finally would not stay up. Sent back to KS, who were very professional and fixed it in short order. Now, I've learned to take better care of it and it has lasted me 3 months without fail and works just as new. I'll give it 4 chills for both value and overall rating., because of the initial problems with reliability.
Bike Setup: Titus El Guapo, Fox Talas RLC 36 160mm, CCDB, I9wheels, Gravity Carbon HB. XT/XTR drivetrain.
a Cross Country Rider
from Rossland, BC CAN
Date Reviewed: August 18, 2011
Strengths: When it works, it works better than any I have tried. Really nice action and easy to control. Great remote lever assembly.
Weaknesses: Durability, ust sent my 3rd one in 6 months for warranty repair.
Great when it works and hard to give up. It just keeps failing and turning into a poor suspension post instead of a great adjustable one. I would switch to the reverb but this last failure the shop had a couple of failed reverbs as well several KS going out for warranty. I give credit to KS for being good about the warranty However, the new genearation of adjustable posts are expensive and to constantly be going through this is a real hassle. Kind of like crack I guess, hard to give up.