DT Swiss have released an alloy version of their short travel 232 dropper post. But it's still way light!
Dropper posts are de rigeur for mountain biking. And while over a decade ago, dropper posts were unsightly, sloppy, squishy externally routed beasts fitted to bikes, internally routed dropper posts and market segmentation has meant you can have a dropper post just about as long or short as you like, from 50mm through to well over 200mm! You don't even need wires or hoses, with electronic options from Magura and RockShox.
The DT Swiss 232 dropper post sits firmly in the cross-country end of the spectrum. At just 60mm of drop, the inverted dropper post isn't about offering lots of drop and a short minimum insertion for your slacked out enduro rig. The DT Swiss 232 instead offers a crazy light action at the lever, along with very few moving parts for smooth action no matter the conditions. The inverted design helps expel dirt and water which are the nemisis of most dropper posts.
I've had a DT Swiss D 232 One carbon dropper post on my own bike for a few months, and while moving from 125mm of drop back to 60mm took a little bit of getting used to. The overall light weight of the carbon model (390g with lever) along with the ease of use has made the D 232 One really easy to get along with.
All the features from the carbon D 232 ONE remain with the alloy D 232, the weight just moves to 416g.
One of the benefits of being upside down is having a bit more real estate for the dropper mechanism. There are no constraints about fitting inside a tube that fits in a seat tube. So the mechanism is a little more reliable.
The release mechanism is right at the top of the post, but it's driven by a DT Swiss spoke on the inside of the post. So there's no extra hydraulic mechanism, it's just releasing a spring. This does mean it's an on or off dropper. It's down, or it is up. With 60mm of drop, that's a reasonable compromise.
The attachment is quick to remove as well, whether for travel, servicing, or for swapping out to a fixed post. The dropper lever is also run on a split clamp, for easy removal.
There are 30.9mm and 27.2mm seat tube options available. DT Swiss suggest using a shim for 31.6mm seat posts - and that is exactly how the DT Swiss D 232 One post is being tested right now.
Our take on the D 232 Dropper post
There's no denying that the post is highly specific. Most people who have used a dropper post on their XC bikes are happy to run around 100-125mm, as usually the lowest weight is gained with 125mm posts, and sometimes 150mm drop. Now with variable drop on most of those posts, not all riders will use all of that drop. So there is scope to offer a post like the DT Swiss D 232 that is considerably lighter. It's a niche market, but that's ok. The DT Swiss D 232 dropper post might be the upgrade your race hardtail or full-suspension bike has been waiting for. Canyon are speccing the DT Swiss D 232 and D232 ONE on some of their new Exceed hardtails, and I'd expect more brands to spec some of their top tier XC bikes with the post as well.
What would be great to see is an adaptation of the concept to a longer post for trail or enduro riding. It is unlikely to be upside down, but seeing further growth in this space from DT Swiss is something we look forward to.
For pricing and availability, contact DT Swiss Australia, or your local DT Swiss dealer.