Written by Steve Wednesday, 04 May 2005 05:00
Title: Perfect Excecution of a Compromised Design
Bikeman Product Code: ST2534
The Cane Creek Thudbuster ST is the limited-travel version of the 3rd-generation Thudbuster. It is clear that Cane Creek learned a lot from its previous versions of the Thudbuster- the fit, finish and tolerances are all first rate.
The limited-travel version is useful for city bikes, smooth trails, and when you don't have enough seatpost exposed to accomodate the full-travel version of the Thudbuster. There are a few issues with the design however: 1) The elastomer puck is not progressive, so you either have to choose whether you want big bump absorption or little bump absorption, not both. A dual-compound elastomer system, or even removable plugs for tuning the elastomer would be an improvement. 2) There is no damping, so if your weight is at upper end of a puck's range you're likely to get some bobbing as you pedal. The alternative is to put in the stiffer puck and lose quite a bit of small-bump shock absorption. 3) You have to remove the puck to adjust the saddle angle. There is a thumbwheel on the forward bolt, but the tension on it means that you need to use an allen wrench to turn it. Having voiced all those complaints, however, I should make it clear that the seatpost remains on my city bike, and I wouldn't consider taking it off. 99% of the time I don't even think about it being there until I hit a section of road or trail that previously would rattle my teeth. I recommend this seatpost if you are looking for a post to take the edge off medium bumps, and have a fairly smooth pedaling style. It's exposed design is easy to maintain, and the fit and finish are excellent. After a few hundred miles there is zero lateral play in the post. I don't recommend it if you are looking for a plush ride (go for the full-range Thudbuster) or only small-bump absorption (in which case most any suspension post will do.) 3 stars for design, 5 stars for execution.
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