If you haven't tried a dropper seatpost for your gnarly mountain bike rides, you're missing out on an easy way to improve your descending powers. The KS LEV offers the latest in dropper seatpost innovation with the only hydraulically locked and air sprung post to feature zero cable movement and up to six inches of silky smooth travel.
The KS LEV is a superb infinitely adjustable hydraulic seatpost, with a plush and silky-smooth stroke and it sports an innovative zero cable movement design. The post has travel options from four to six inches, and uses an ergonomic carbon lever remote. The LEV has performed flawlessly over the four-month test period, and has been trouble-free with the same buttery smooth operation since day one. Continue reading →
Strengths: 1. Infinitely adjustable hydraulic seatpost
2. Superb cable management - zero cable movement
3. Ergonomic carbon remote Lever
4. Ease of installation
5. Available in 27.2mm diameter size
Weaknesses: 1. Cost
I have limited options since my frame seatpost diameter is 27.2 mm. I was considering GD but was turned off by the looks of the boots.I'm glad i chose Lev, it has performed flawlessly for over 2 months. So far its been trouble-free with the same buttery smooth operation since I've installed it. I ride it in the rain a couple of times and haven’t affected the performance.
Favorite Trail: Bataan Killer Loop, Timberland Blue Trail
Duration Product Used: 2
Purchased At: bike bling
Similar Products Used: N/A
Bike Setup: RFX, RS Lyric, SRAM DRIVETRAIN
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: May 28, 2013
Strengths: Very smooth, looks good, no cable movement, 150mm of infinite travel, nice audible clunk when you hit max so you know the seat is up. So far very reliable. Makes a huge difference on frequently undulating terrain. Minial maintenance required.
Weaknesses: Bit fiddly to set up, high cost (but comparable to other top droppers), its a pain to adjust the air pressure, although this is rarely required after initial set up. Remote can only really go on top of the bar, so takes cosmetic damage when the bike is upside down, and possibly worse if you crash hard. All fairly minor points really.
Took a little while to set up with the help of an online video. A little bit fiddly, but easy enough to do yourself. Adjust the air pressure before you put the saddle on, as its a pain to do later on.
Not cheap but comparable with other high end posts (i.e Reverb) , and so far seems to deliver on performance. It does exactly what is says it will.
No major drawbacks after the initial outlay, but its easy to transfer to your next bike so a good investment.
Love the smooth travel, much nicer - and less risky - than my friends Command post (nut-buster).
No signs of the widely reported issues that affect all droppers....so far.
Strengths: Smooth action, nice remote lever, adjustable seat clamp similar to a Thomson
Weaknesses: Blown cartridge within two weeks. Sent back to KS 2 months ago. Still no post!
When I first got the post I fell in love with it. I was using the I 7, which was nice, but no where near as smooth as the LEV. For the first two weeks I thought I hit the jackpot. Then I blew the cartridge in the main chamber. The post would drop about an inch every time I sat on it. I spoke with Ron at KS and he said 'no problem, send it back in'. This was at the beginning of April. I've called numerous times asking about the post, and get nothing more than the run around. I've been told that the parts to fix the post should be in within a week, then 6 more days, then 2 more weeks, then I"m told it's out of there control and they're waiting on parts from Taiwan. I was also told that the 27.2mm post had a design flaw that they're working on fixing. Well, I spend $394 + shipping to the US from Germany to get this post. I'd have hoped by the time the LEV 27.2 hit the market, the design flaws would have been fixed. Hopefully everyone else on this diameter post isn't having these issues, but, from what Ron relayed to me is at that time there were about 20 other posts sitting in his office with the same problem. Lesson learned...
Strengths: Smooth Action, cable does not move when actuated , excellent range of motion for the length of the post.
Weaknesses: Cost, a bit finicky to set up.
I set a 125 up so that the top out was very high, like a road bike and it really is nice like that when the climbs are at the most extreme as you can "ride the rivet" and keep some weight on the rear tire and still keep the front end down. The all the way down position is wonderful for the steep descents and really tech stuff. The action is nice and smooth , although it sticks occasionally when it is within an inch of the top setting and you want it to go up for an upcoming steep bit. This is my first adjustable post and they really do help you ride better.
Strengths: Currently one of only two stationary-cable 27.2mm dropper posts (the other is the Gravity Dropper Turbo LP); small and efficient remote lever; thoughtfully designed; high-quality feel
Weaknesses: Expensive! Upper tube on the 27.2mm unit looks fragile, but maybe only from my perspective; tiny bit of play; they don't include friction paste or thread-locking fluid, both of which are needed (just a few drops) for proper installation
My unit came with an extra inline Barrel Adjuster, which helps to reduce cable play at the lever. But oddly, it lacks the removable cap to adjust air that's described everywhere. So it seems air adjustment is not possible anymore. No mention of it in the printed user manual either. Overall, after several rides, it's very smooth, works perfectly, and feels solid.
Strengths: Fixed cable position, easy cable routing options, cable actuated (no fluid to deal with), smooth action, integrated ODI grip clamp mount, air adjustable return speed, infinitely adjustable for any height.
Weaknesses: Seat clamp nuts are round and easy to lose, adjusting air requires removing the seat, expensive???
I've had this post for about 2 months now and am very happy with it overall. I had some issues with the clamp creaking and seat sliding back, but that was my fault for not torquing the clamp bolts down all the way. And the biggest complaint I have is that the seat clamp nuts are round which means they are not locked into place in the head, and are easy to drop and lose. I would have liked to see a standard hex locknut design that would recess into the clamp head and really never need to come out. Other than that, this seatpost has been fantastic.
I think most of the people giving negative reviews and those complaining on the forums are not following the installation instructions. People are not installing the barrel adjuster and setting the tension too high. They are installing the metal cable hook backwards which causes the cover to pop off and the seat post not to actuate correctly. Others still are fooling with the pressure or not even checking it at all prior to installation. But what I have found is that although the installation is a little bit more involved that just a "bolt and go" operation, it's well documented and easy to follow if you're patient. I know, new toys are hard to be patient with...even I am at fault for that and didn't torque the seat clamp bolts to spec. But really, start to finish this thing only took a bit over an hour to install. Getting the cable the right length and housing cut properly was the hardest part.
Bootom line: I love the way this seatpost works and looks. The integrated grip actuator is a great idea and is one of the best out there right now. It's small so it doesn't stick up or interfere with controls or get destroyed easily in a crash. Even though it's actuated via a cable, it works smoothly and doesn't require bleeding if you need to cut the hose. A minor inconvenience is that the air pressure cap which allows you to regulate how fast the seat post extends, is located under the seat rail clamp. That means once you get your seat position dialed in, you better hope the return speed of the post is good or you'll have to do it all over again. So, follow the manual and set the speed first, according to your "all up" weight. Another great feature of this post is the head design which allows it to rotate 180 degrees. This means you can position the cable termination point exactly where it will make the cleanest cable run.
I was skeptical at first about the benefits of the dropper post. However, I started doing more weekend shuttle-type rides and manually putting up and down my old post, and then being stuck with it at that height got on my nerves. What I was surprised at was the amount that I use it now on even pretty short little descents (<1 minute). And in almost every case, my times have gotten shorter. And yet another surprise was that I have been running my seat post higher for pedaling than I was before. Rather than putting my seat post at kind of a "happy medium" for climbing and descending, now I can have the best of both worlds. I get more power to pedals climbing as I'm in a more efficient position, and I'm also able to hit the downhills better since I can freely move around without the saddle in front of my junk.
So yes, it's a chunk of change but I think overall it's been worth it. Only time will tell how long it will take me to break it. But I don't think that I would blame that on KS, since my riding style is less than elegant! I've already crashed a few times and come down hard on the seat several times...so far so good. I don't expect it to be bulletproof, but just withstand some normal MTB abuse. I'll post another review after the summer riding season!
Strengths: Return Speed and position, Good Looking, no cable growth, easy maintanence, awesome remote, easy installation and removal
Weaknesses: Adding air pressure is a pain. But once set forget it.
I bought this seat post used as I dove into the hype of droppers. Let me tell you I will never go back. I rode my nomad today which doesnt have a dropper post and man did i miss my knolly with the LEV. this post is awesome, I love that it has no cable growth and if it holds up as long as I think it will, this thing is going to be worth well the investment. Buy it now! and forget about normal seatpost.
Strengths: Smooth action
Remote design and operation
Weaknesses: Slow return spped
Unable to adjust air pressure
This is for the 27.2mm model. I own the KS i900 in the 30mm diameter and the Hilo 27.2mm. I switched from the Hilo to the Lev because I was unhappy with the action/return and I liked the cable design on the Lev. I ordered in Sep 12 and it was delivered in 6 months later in March. That wouldn't be an issue if the post worked. The return speed is slow and occasionally the post will not return entirely to the top. KS has removed the ability to add air to the post in this diameter and hence the ability to adjust the return speed. This is a deal breaker for me as it impairs my riding on the trail. After using 27mm posts from two manufacturers with the same problem I suspect hydraulic posts in this diameter are not really feasible.
a Cross Country Rider
Date Reviewed: March 16, 2013
Strengths: very smooth, easy operation
I started out with a Gravity Dropper but the lever was way too awkward and stiff for a small person with small hands, riding on trails with lots of up and down. So I never realized the full benefit of a dropper seat until I got this one. The remote is a small, ambiextrous lever you can place right next to your handlebar grip so it's very easy to reach with your thumb and silky smooth to operate. The seatpost is infinitely adjustable and also silky smooth. I got used to it very quickly and love the advantages the dropper seat gives me on the downhills. It's greatly improved my downhill ability and confidence. Well worth the extra weight and cost.
Weaknesses: Saddle lifts a bit if you pick bike up by saddle when seat is in down position.
Bought in NZ for NZ$450 incl postage (about US$330). Done about 100km on it. Replaced my 2yr old command post. Much smoother, sl lighter at 620g uncut cable 30.9mm 150mm travel model, looks great, wonderful cable attachment with no drooping floppy cable to control, no seat movement at all, no issues. I haven't checked the psi as works fine from delivery in mail. Front seat bolt came ever so slightly loose causing seat creaking so might use locktite in future. Smooooth and quiet. I prefer it to my friends' reverbs and I like cable actuation. Fairly early days on it but I can't imagine it developing any issues after riding it and it seems so solid.
Date Reviewed: January 31, 2013
Strengths: Light, smooth, and reliable. Outstanding quality/finish/materials. Static cable. Two bolt seat clamp.
Weaknesses: Price (if you pay MSRP).
I've been using the LEV for several months now on many rides and it has proven itself over and over to be reliable and consistent. Cold, muddy, wet rides don't seem to phase it. It's consistent. Period.
Out of the box I noticed how well it was made. Very high quality materials and finishes throughout. The weight is very good too. Definitely not heavy for a unit with a static cable which likely adds some parts and complexity.
The lever action is smooth and easy to adjust. Adding air was also easy. I went up to 200 PSI and that seems to provide a quick enough return without being overly fast. It shipped with 150 PSI but that was a bit slow for my taste. Some might say that removing the seat to add air is a pain, but I found it to be a non-issue.
I used a V-brake noodle at the lever to keep the cable tucked in close to the bar. This works great and I highly recommend it.
One thing worth mentioning is the cable entry point rotation feature. You can position the entry point anywhere you want so that it is out of the way. This is a great feature that should allow this post to easily work and look good on any bike.
Overall I feel this post is the best on the market right now. With it's one-of-a-kind features and outstanding reliability, it would be difficult to find anything better. Oh, and the cost shouldn't be a deterrent. MSRP is $399 but I was able to pick one up from Bike Bling for $297 ($349 with a %15 off coupon) so shop around. It has been worth every penny!!
Strengths: It's not cheap, but it is the best in the class.
I used to own a Reverb and it worked without any issue, but the Lev is just perfect.
Cable doesn't move up and down.
Great lever - small and easy to position on handlebars to max comfort. I could not find a good place for the Reverb's lever with 2x or 3x setup. The shifters were in the way. This is not an issue with the Lev.
It uses a shifter cable, which means it is much easier to service then oil in the Reverb. It also means it can be reattached very easily. You can't do that with a hydraulic.
And the best thing - it has never failed. I own a 125mm version for 7 months and a 150mm for 2.
They both feel buttery smooth.
Strengths: Works consistently!!!
Cable attachment at base
Weaknesses: Cost? But worth the extra price.
Having owned a Reverb and a Gravity Dropper, the LEV is in a class by itself. I had the first generation Reverb and it was nothing but trouble. Constantly in the shop to clean up all the seals. It would work for a short time and then fail again. I've heard the newer Reverbs are better but I wasn't rolling the dice on a second one.
The Gravity Dropper I bought on the cheap. It's heavy and a simplistic design. It's performance was more consistent than my Reverb but it was an awkward product to use. Lever shape is like something from the 80's and it takes a lot of pressure to engage. I really didn't like how the post would extend if you lifted by the seat.
The LEV suffers none of the above issues. Everything just works! The design works great and so fr has been trouble free. I mounted the lever upside down and prefer that position. I love the thing and tell all my buddies to buy one. No complaints!
Strengths: This is the adjustable seat post that it seems every MTBer claims they want. Stationary line into the base of post that does not move when the post is activated. 360 degree point of entry for line so you can customize installation to fit any bike frame. Remote easily activates and both the remote and post operate smoothly. Just a well thought out piece of bike equipment.
Weaknesses: Cost? Definitely leans toward expensive. Hopefully the cost will come down to be more competitive with other adjustable seat posts. Dependability is questionable but so far the consensus is this post is reliable.
Been in the market for an adjustable seat post for a year or so, now. The one stipulation was I wanted a stationary point of entry for the remote line on the seat post. When the CB Kronolog came out, I was a early buyer because initial reviews said it was a good seat post, and it had the main stipulation I wanted. After three tries, I returned that post because it was a huge failure, and subsequent reviews have echoed that sentiment. I saw the KS LEV, but thought it was a bit too expensive, and I was unfamiliar with the Kind Shock brand, so I waited for the Fox DOSS to be released. While it seems many like that post, and the three positions would seem to simplify using a dropper post, I was really disappointed by the initial price and the fact that Fox did not make their post with a stationary point on the post. I decided to wait a little longer for the Thompson seat post to come onto the market and while it has yet to be reviewed or sold, I was disappointed again, when I saw that Thompson also did not not design their post to have a stationary point on their post. Finally, I found the KS LEV on pricepoint at a reduced cost, and read up on forum posts to get an idea whether or not this item was worth a shot. After reading mostly good things about this post, I went ahead and bought it. The installation was fairly straightforward and even a person such as myself with limited mechanical skills was able to easily set it up. (quick note, you must have small bolt cutters to cut the steel mesh wire and casing that comes with this post) So far, it looks great and works even better.
Bike Setup: Santa Cruz Chameleon. 3x9 XC/Mountain trails set up.
a All Mountain Rider
Date Reviewed: November 19, 2012
Strengths: Fixed cable mount at the bottom of the post... That's where it ends!
Weaknesses: The LEV never worked well from day 1. They clearly need to re-evaluate their marketing that they can charge more because they make the best.
I've had issues with this dropper from day one. It will always drop some, but when flying down the trail and coming into a rocky/technical/steep section, not knowing if it's going to drop .25", 1" or a bit more is a huge issue. I've resorted to stopping and dropping it by hand, which is the only way to get it to drop all the way or close to it. This is going back to my LBS.
Similar Products Used: I've heard of all the horror stories of the seat droppers so I've waited to hopefully get past all of the issues. Clearly I did not wait long enough. I see that others have had good experiences with this dropper, I wish you luck if you get this one.