The Rockshox Reverb was arguably the dropper that brought the concept into the mainstream. Far from the first offering, but certainly one that stirred the dropper post revolution.
This second generation Reverb, as tested by our EWS man Chris Hutchens, aims to iron out the niggles that stopped the original taking the monopoly.
Words and photos by Chris Hutchens.
Only a few years ago the introduction of the dropper seat post hit the market. I feel this was a fairly monumental addition to the bike industry and how we ride, or certainly race, mountain bikes now. The first Rockshox Reverb met with much hype, and was around for quite a few years. The post was far from perfect and some refinement was needed to keep up with competitors.
New addition and a revamp.
For 2016 the 170mm Reverb became available alongside the previous length offerings in 100mm, 125mm and 150mm. More importantly though the post has had a full internal redesign with new SKF internal floating piston. The new design has dedicated post lengths per travel length and is available in 30.9mm, 31.6mm and 34.9mm diameters. Expect a far more reliable and positive feeling dropper now.
At the start of the race season I stuck with a 150mm dropper reverb. I was riding a large frame and with the seat post inserted almost to the lowest point this was in a perfect position for me. Pushing an average height of 172cm and with a large frame I was unable to fathom the thought of riding with a 170mm dropper. My legs would have been struggling to reach the pedals.
Mid way through the season I moved to a medium frame. Not only being shorter in length, but also with a lower stand over height, the frame opened up the option of a 170mm Reverb (available in Stealth only).
Ultimately the frame size is the limiting factor for most people contemplating running that extra drop. The question for me though was is that extra inch worth it?
Fitting the Post.
The post came without a quick connect/disconnect fitting meaning a bleed was required after cutting the hose to length. This process is super easy and the bleed method couldn’t be simpler with all the equipment (except what’s required to cut the hose) required provided in the box. The quick connect/disconnect that’s featured on a lot of the posts makes removing the post a easy chore, I’d recommend you buy this option.
Freedom of Movement.
No, I’m not going to go down some Brexit avenue but what I did notice straight away was the freedom to move around on the bike with the extra drop. The seat was completely out of the way in a moment. The action on the new generation Reverb is far smoother and more responsive than the 1st generation and improves the ride. There were instantly benefits with the 170mm post, and why wouldn’t you go for this option if you can fit it on your bike.
I previously had quite a few returns to the Reverb graveyard when running the 1st generation post but after a lot of use with the new post it’s held up superbly and it looks like the new internals have really improved the reliability of the post. The look remains slick while improving the final product.
I’ve now ridden the 170mm reverb for almost 4 months and put in a lot of wet, muddy miles as well ridden a lot of dusty seal-destroying trails. There’s no sign of wear and the action has stayed as fluid as when it was new. Having the extra drop is definitely a no-brainer – that’s if you can fit it onto your frame. If you can get the 170mm dropper on your bike then I’d definitely recommend it. Now the reverb has had its revamp it’s a great option and one of only a few offering over 150mm drop.
You can check out all the specs on the new Rockshox Reverb here. Check out our other reviews on our Product page.