@PlusbikeNerd: “I’ll likely be in the minority here but I don’t use a dropper post. While I think they will help you descend more easily and quickly, I don’t think they are are worth the added expense, maintenance, and weight. With a modern-progressive-geometry long-travel full-sus 29+ Trailbike, I’m not struggling in the least to descend without a dropper post. And I don’t care that I might have gone just a wee bit faster with the seatpost down. When I’m riding, I don’t want to manage a bunch of buttons. I like keeping my handlebar uncluttered. I don’t have or want a remote lockout either. A single 1x shifter and two brakes is enough for me. Keep it simple and uncomplicated and low maintenance.”
IMHO riding with a dropper post has never been about making things easier or faster, but instead more fun. I would be willing to bet that I personally have used a dropper post longer than anyone on this site having first employed a Descender post in ’05 and have had some type of dropper on every mountain bike I’ve had since.
So just for a second and because I’m bored on a Wednesday afternoon, I’d like to address your concerns. Regarding the added expense, yes they cost more than a rigid seat post (unless you have a Thomson or an ENVE). That said, you can get into one for under $150 and actually a good one at that (more on that in a moment). I believe that you will get an improved riding experience that will pay for that $150 ad infinitum times over. The Brand X Ascend models (same as the RaceFace Aeffect I have) from Chain Reaction are dumb simple and work great.
As far as maintenance goes…what maintenance? The most I’ve ever done with any of the droppers I’ve owned (3 Gravity Droppers, 4 Reverbs, a RaceFace Aeffect and a OneUp) was to clean them off and spray them with Maxima SC1 although basically up until discovering that wonderful product I did nothing other than clean the bike. The service interval on any of them was maybe every year-year and half where with the Rock Shox ones I’d send them to SRAM service at QBP and get them back in no more than 5 days and the most that ever cost was $40. The others I’ve done nothing, NOTHING…other than change the cable which takes maybe 10 minutes including drinking a beer and looking at social media sites simultaneously.
Finally, weight is only an issue if you are racing cross country (or racing period) and even then it’s waaaaaaaay overrated as being a mitigating factor in performance. Not to mention that you will never notice the non-rotational weight of a dropper post especially if you are riding a 29+ bike.
In my experience, employing a dropper post has become so intuitive that I use it maybe as much as or more than my brakes. At the end of the day, you do whatever turns you on. However, fourteen years ago when first got one and heard every excuse from every rider as to why they’d never need one I just laughed promising them that they would become standard gear on all bikes. 99% of those same folks that scoffed at them back then are riding them now. They make riding way more fun without any real sacrifices. Party.