Ergon CF Allroad Pro Carbon Setback Seatpost: Getting Rolling – by Guitar Ted
Ergon has probably one of the longest development timelines for a component that I am aware of in the CF Allroad seat post. I remember seeing a prototype for what became the CF Allroad seat post at Interbike in 2006. About eight years later, Ergon came out with the Carbon CF-3 Pro, which looked almost identical to the post we have on review now. The Carbon CF-3 Pro was rated only for paved road usage though. The new CF Allroad, as the name might suggest, is for unpaved and paved road usage.
What It Is: The CF Allroad Pro Carbon Setback (yes- there is a non-setback version as well), is a seat post that is about as unlike a standard seat post as you can make it while having the ability to be inserted into any 27.2mm ID seat tube on a bicycle. (This is the only size available) The seat post is actually two halves of carbon formed into what works out as a round cross-section when put together, The two halves are then joined by the seat clamp, which Ergon calls the “Flip Head”. Then it is also connected by a bolt near the bottom of the two halves which threads into a bonded insert in one of the two halves of the seat post shaft. These halves form what Ergon calls a ‘leaf spring” which flexes rearward when a rider is seated and rolls over irregularities in the road.
The seat remains parallel to the surface as the Flip Head allows pivoting between the two halves of the shaft it is connected to. Therefore Ergon claims the rider is not bothered by strange sensations in movement which the Flip Head prevents. Tilt of the saddle on set up is adjusted by loosening the through bolt at the base of the seat post halves and this allows the halves to move vertically which in turn articulates the Flip Head slightly, allowing for perfect saddle tilt and fit for the rider.
The Flip Head can be, as the name suggests, flipped 180° for further saddle set back options to accommodate the rider fit. The setback on this model is 25mm. Again, there is a non-set back model available which features similar construction and benefits. The CF Allroad seat post has a maximum of 20mm travel. Minimum insertion is 110mm and maximum insertion is 210mm. The length is listed at 345mm. The CF Allroad Pro Carbon Setback Seatpost weighs a claimed 240 grams and sells for $249.95 USD/ € 249,95 (with VAT). Rider weight limit is 100Kg/240lbs.
First Impressions: The seat post was sent to RidingGravel.com to test and review without any retail packaging, so we don’t know how it might be presented to consumers. That said, the seat post is impressive with its unique construction. You definitely know you are looking at some high-end technology here. The fit and finish is top notch. Nothing looks out of place, and even the interior of the leaf spring halves looks smooth.
We weighed the post on the digital scales and came up with 237 grams. Pretty much spot-on there. The saddle tilt adjustment on this post is very unusual. Loosening the bolt at the base, you then can slide the two halves of the shaft – one up, the other down slightly, and this articulates the Flip Head which in turn is going to tilt your saddle slightly up, or down to your desired saddle setting. Obviously this would require inserting and removing the post to loosen-secure the bolt, which seems a bit tedious, but one would think this would be a one-time adjustment.
The weight and price of the CF Allroad seem to be quite reasonable. Our questions for this review of this post would be concerning how the CF Allroad measures up to seatposts that feature flex instead of a mechanical means of vibration reduction. To be fair, this Ergon post is mostly in the “flex” camp when it comes to absorbing vibrations, however it also is a ‘one-size fits most’ sprung post if you look at it that way. Seems like a bit of a hybrid approach with a very unique design.
The seat post might be a bit on the short side for some bicycles with extremely sloped top tubes where something in the 400mm range is needed, so it may not work for everyone. And another thing- That 240lb weight limit means that anyone looking to use this that weighs more than that kitted up (hydration pack users take note here), may be left out of the fun. That means me, and so this post review will be finished up by Grannygear.
Look for an update in a month or so.
So Far… The unique and long awaited gravel road capable version of the Ergon seat post is here and it looks pretty unique. Featuring two halves joined together at the top and bottom, the ‘leaf spring’ design promises 20mm of movement. It looks ace and the fit and finish are what we expect from Ergon. The weight limit means that a certain set of riders cannot enjoy the benefits of a smoother ride from this seat post, so be aware of that.
For more on this seat post see Ergon North America’s site here .
Note: Ergon sent over the CF Allroad Pro Carbon seat post at no charge to riding Gravel for test and review. We were not paid, nor bribed for this review and we will always strive to give our honest thoughts and views throughout.