E*THIR­TEEN TRS PLUS DROP­PER POST

Australian Mountain Bike - - Tested - WORDS AND IM­AGES: CHRIS HERRON

The e*thir­teen TRS Plus Drop­per Post comes from a brand that has man­u­fac­tured some of the best chain­guides, crank sets, cas­settes and wheel sets. The TRS Plus Drop­per is e*thir­teen’s first at­tempt at drop­per post with the aim to pro­duce a sim­ple, durable and re­li­able post. They have made it a fully me­chan­i­cal de­sign sans air and oil. This rings mu­sic to many peo­ple’s ears, as well as many me­chan­ics, who have had to deal with messy oil leaks in frames and time con­sum­ing bleed­ing of levers. Be­ing coil sprung rather than air, it should re­sult in a con­sis­tent re­turn of the post for many years and with user-friendly ser­vic­ing it means the post will run smoother for longer. The TRS Plus is a 4 stage drop­per post, mean­ing is low­ers in its travel to 3 set po­si­tions from full ex­ten­sion. Com­pare that to in­fin­itely ad­justable posts that can be set any­where in their travel. The post I was sent was the 30.9 di­am­e­ter ver­sion that has a top set­ting of 150mm. The 3 po­si­tions the post low­ers to is 110mm, 80mm and fi­nally 0mm. The weight of the post comes in at 570grams, which is pretty stan­dard for 150mm drop­per posts. Open­ing the pack­ag­ing we are pre­sented with the post it­self, ca­ble outer and in­ner and ac­tu­a­tor lever and clamp. How­ever, I was quite sur­prised to find another lit­tle bag­gie with 4 lit­tle brass keys. These brass keys guide the post up and down whilst re­duc­ing the amount of lat­eral move­ment felt at the sad­dle. Once these wear, larger brass keys can be in­serted to re­duce this lat­eral play ex­tend­ing the life of the post. In­stal­la­tion only took about 5 min­utes once the ca­ble outer was in­stalled in the frame. Re­moval was just as easy, as the ca­ble head is lo­cated in the base of the post, so dis­con­nect­ing the post from the ca­ble and hous­ing was su­per sim­ple. The ac­tu­a­tion of the post is via a very neatly de­signed shifter style pad­dle that is sim­ply bet­ter than most of the other ac­tu­a­tors out there. It comes com­plete with grip tape on the lever for ex­tra trac­tion dur­ing those wet rides, as well as be­ing SRAM Match­maker friendly…some­thing I look for in ev­ery drop­per post lever. The only is­sue I had with this in­stal­la­tion was the torque specs printed on the lever. The 1Nm set­ting on the lever blade where it clamps onto the main bar­rel of the body is not high enough as the lever blade slips un­der ac­tu­at­ing. It def­i­nitely need more torque, end­ing up with 3Nm to stop it slip­ping. Out on the trail the post per­formed flaw­lessly. Ev­ery push of the lever dropped the post to the de­sired po­si­tion, although it did take a lit­tle bit of prac­tice to drop the post to the 110mm po­si­tion and not go straight to the 80mm po­si­tion. I am a fan of staged drop­per posts as I have pre­vi­ously used and loved the Fox DOSS post from 5 or so years ago. I know they are not for ev­ery­one, but it makes it easy to find that per­fect 30mm drop to just get the post out of the way when hov­er­ing over the sad­dle on rocky and rooty trails. On in­fin­itely ad­justable posts, I find my­self search­ing for that 30mm sweet spot and not al­ways get­ting there, ei­ther drop­ping too low or not enough. Lever ac­tu­a­tion is very smooth and re­quires very lit­tle ef­fort, great for small hands and those with weak thumbs (think­ing of the lit­tle shred­ders out there). A cou­ple of turns of the bar­rel ad­juster was all that was re­quired to keep it drop­ping like clock­work over the time it was in my bike. The speed of re­turn of the post is some­thing that is a per­sonal thing, one that can’t be fine-tuned on this post, un­like some of the other air and oil posts out there in the mar­ket. I found the re­turn to be ad­e­quate for my lik­ing and what I’m used to. Only time will tell if the speed will slow down with spring wear and dirt and grit get­ting be­low the main seal slow­ing it down. But with a post that is eas­ily user ser­vice­able, in­clud­ing new bush­ings and cam re­build, I would like to think that this post will main­tain re­li­able ac­tu­a­tion for many years. With so many post on the mar­ket it’s al­ways hard to de­cide which one will suit you and your style of rid­ing. At $449 it’s not the cheap­est, nor the most ex­pen­sive out there, but for a post that per­forms as well as this did, and is more user ser­vice­able than the ma­jor­ity of the posts out there, I’d say this one is high on my list of rec­om­men­da­tions when asked which drop­per post to get.

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