The seat post is back. It was on the ropes for a few seasons. The integrated seat mast came out swinging and it looked like the seat post was under gunned and fighting out of weight class. It took a few rounds, the seat post was bruised and bloodied, but the integrated seat mast began to show some serious flaws in its technique and the seat post, with its classic style and ability to adjust its strategy, has come charging back.
Ok, enough of the bad metaphor, but it’s true. The seat post did really seem like a goner. Integrated seat masts began to turn up on just about every new bike that was announced and they were supposed to be lighter, better performing and yes, they did look cool. Brands like Specialized and Cervelo began to field questions about why they hadn’t made the jump to integrated seat masts with every new model year. Those brands, and many others, held firm, the seat post was still the most elegant solution to getting your seat on your bike, regardless of current fashion.
Well, like all things fashionable, the seat post seems to have come into style yet again. There are some very good reasons for this. Adjustability is the obvious one. The 3 or 4 centimeters of adjustment given by the best integrated seat masts can easily be negated by a poor cut. The rider is left with no options for adjustment and the resale value plummets. Packing an integrated seat mast bike is another massive headache. Your already oversize luggage just got bigger.
There is another type of adjustability available with the seat post. A simple swap out from carbon to aluminum or titanium can radically change the way your bike handles in the saddle, adding stiffness or compliance as is necessary.
All that being said, it’s time to get excited about a great seat post, and one of our new favorites is the Easton EC90. Available in zero or 20mm offset, the posts feature a one-piece carbon shaft and lower. The upper is also carbon, keeping weight down significantly. Two steel bolts handle clamping and angle adjustment. Without relying on notches, the angle can be adjusted infinitely, critical with the incredible array of saddle choices on the market.
In addition to the carbon upper, Easton utilizes two special technologies to keep weight low and create durability. Relief Area Design incorporates a subtle flat spot at the clamp area to ensure carbon is not crushed by the clamping force. Taperwall refers to Eaton’s ability to ad multiple tapers to a single tube, anywhere along the tube wall. These tapers can be used to increase durability, remove weight and most importantly in a seat post, create a responsive, lively, compliant feeling.
Both the EC90 Zero and EC90 Offset are available in 27.2, 30.9 and 31.6. The offset comes in a 350mm length, while the zero is available in 300 or 400mm lengths. While this may seem like a lot of length it makes enormous sense when the utilizing the posts with a compact frame. The lightest offset tips the scale at 200grams while the zero shaves an additional 10 grams from this weight. Both cost $210.00.