Thomson recently released details of the next two iterations of the Elite Dropper seatpost on the company's blog. The internally-routed version of its dropper seatpost, dubbed ‘Covert’, will begin shipping May 1. A second version, offered in the smaller 27.2mm seatpost diameter, is expected to begin shipping in late May.
The Covert Dropper will be offered in both 30.9 and 31.6mm sizes. Designing the Covert Dropper was a more or less a matter simply swapping the orientation of seatpost's internals, so that the actuator is located at the base of the seatpost. Thomson notes that there will be no way for consumers to retrofit existing externally routed Thompson Elite Dropper seatposts for internally routed operation.
Specifications for the Covert Dropper remain the same as the current externally routed seatpost: 125mm / 5in of infinitely adjustable travel. The routing of the cable through the lever is reversed, though, with the cable secured with a set screw at the lever, rather than at the seatpost.
The claimed weight for the Covert Dropper is 515g. Pricing will be US$479.95 (US$30 more than Thomson’s externally routed dropper seatpost.)
Many riders with older frames using 27.2mm seatposts have been waiting for more options for this once-common seatpost diameter to come to market, though its low volume presents engineering challenges to adjustable seatpost designers.
Early reports stated that the 27.2mm version would only have 3in of drop. It appears that Thomson was able to wring a full 125mm / 5in from the 27.2mm version.
Due to the constraints of the smaller, 27.2mm diameter, the dropper has an overall length of 430mm, 30mm longer than the larger diameter 30.9 and 31.6mm seatposts. This increase in length was necessary in order to accommodate the volume of the nitrogen chamber that serves as the seatpost’s return spring.
The 27.2mm version will only be offered in an externally routed version and will also retail for $479.95.
Last but not least, Thomson is continuing to push forward with the development of a version of the Elite Dropper that is actuated wirelessly via a Bluetooth signal. The company hopes to have rideable prototypes on the trail this summer.