I-MTB

Specialized Command Post Blacklite – Test

All mountain and trail riding has a certain range of characteristics that often requires the rider to change the height of his seat post according to the trail conditions and to maximise comfort, speed and control, through body position on the bike. For the last five months we have had the Specialized Command Post BlackLite on test, this is a mechanically activated and controlled seat post with an air spring.

Video

With a market full of different options it can be hard to know which is the best one to use. Generally variable height seat posts come in two categories, hydraulic and mechanical. As there are many options on the market it can be difficult to know which ones are the best. Adjustable seat posts are also known to be a sensitive piece of equipment, open to the elements and often in the direct line of mud, malfunction after a while is fairly common. We decided then to deliberately not do any maintenance to the BlackLite and see how it went.

Specifications

– As a mechanical seat post this the main point of control is a cable and air spring.
– The cable joins the post at the head, which means the cable has to move when the post moves, however this posed no problems and on the Nomad frame it remained in a perfect position all the time and did not get in the way.
– Three positions, trail, ride, and descend.
– The saddle is attached by way of a single bolt and clamp.
– The diameter we used was 30.9mm.
– The seat post also has the option to change the grease (therefore viscosity) in the head of the barrel according to temperature conditions to ensure excellent lubrication at all times.
– The remote can be mounted on the handle bar or on to the end of a Specialized compatible bar grip.
– Weight 543 grams

Function and Testing Opinions.

Apart from riding there aren’t many tests that are possible, so we rode a lot. The function of movement surprised us, at first we thought that only three positions would not be enough, however we were wrong we found each position ideal for it’s intended purpose. The post responds quickly to the operation of the remote and clicks into position easily. The mechanical feeling of the post was solid, even after many trail rides there was only minimal play in the head the same as when the post came out of the box.

Response to dirt, washing and other wear and tear was great, the seat post always continued to work smoothly despite our best try to see it’s weaknesses.

With 120 mm of travel adjustably was excellent for body height, the saddle mounting for us was highly adjustable and allowed us a comfortable position. What was great is that even after a period of time the mounting clamp did not creak, which we often find to be a problem on othe posts we have used.

Finally despite the cable routing being of the type that moves with the seat post, it worked great, stayed out of the way and remained tuned perfectly for the whole testing period.

Conclusion

After many trail rides and lots of dust mud and washes the seat post still works great. If you like mechanical posts you wont be disappointed with this one, it is well built, has a good clamp and has been super reliable over varied conditions and (deliberately) low maintenance. It’s movements are smooth and sufficient and give a simple way of making the best out of the trail. Tuning and setting up is easy and the remote was excellent in form and function for us. If a rider decided to buy this post they would not be disappointed, we have put this to the top of our list of recommended bike parts.

24 March 2013  ~  Written by

Posted under:  News, Parts Test

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I-MTB is an online MTB magazine and trail areas operator based in Tuscany, Italy

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