PNW Loam Lever and Rainier Post
Words by | Photos by Nic Hall
I was halfway through a 10-day bike trip when my Reverb crapped out, again. Luckily I was on the way to Trans-Cascadia and was able to get a hand off in the woods. I’d been looking at PNW Components options as I was growing ever tired of issues with my current post. Issues is the polite way of saying I was completely over it after falling apart and staying at full height at the top of Double Down, which is a pretty bad ass downhill I’d just spent quite a bit of time pedaling up to. It’s amazing that even though we rode for so many years with our seatposts up, not being able to drop your post almost ruins an otherwise awesome ride nowadays.
Normally, I would have just hit up a local shop but I had to be at the Trans-Cascadia bike race the following morning and all the shops nearby were closed. I got ahold of Loam Wolf tester, Nic Hall just before he left for TC and luckily he was able to bring me a post. The next day minutes before the morning ride I swapped the post, which couldn’t have been any easier. No bleeding or mess. You simply pull the cable and housing through the frame, hook it to the seat post and boom, ready for action. From then on it’s been happily ever after.
POST: The PNW Components Rainier IR comes in three different travel options (125mm, 150mm, 170mm) and two different seat post diameters, 30.9 or 31.6. The Rainier is also available with internal or external cable routing and comes with two remote options. For a few extra bills you can get the brand new Loam Lever, which is what I was lucky enough to get.
I have been a hydraulic dropper user for years but after winters of freezing, sticky action and reliability issues, I was ready for a change. The updated Rainer IR sports larger diameter stanchions, making it slightly stiffer and lighter. PNW also added a DU bushing to combat side-to-side play, which seams to have worked, as there’s still no noticeable play.
LOAM LEVER: Besides having a pretty clever name, the Loam Lever is one of, if not the best dropper post lever on the market. You can watch our unboxing video of the post and lever here. While filming the video we noticed several key features were present in the Loam Lever that were sure to make it a standout product.
PNW Components said the goal of their new lever was to create something that is: adjustable, weather proof, offers ultimate grip, and is “Techy A.F.” To achieve this PNW gives the lever two forms of adjustment for the ultimate in placement. The CNC-machined lever also uses sealed bearings and stainless hardware and the No Slip Grip (injection molded thumb pad) ensure the lever works well, even when things get gritty. The pad is also available in Teal, Orange or Grey.
Along with having compatible clamps for SRAM, Shimano or a standalone 22.2mm hinge, the lever worked with OneUp, 9point8, Race Face, KS, e13, Bontrager and several other cable actuated posts.
I’ve been using the post five days a week for just over a month and I really can’t think of much that I would change. In terms of post actuation and smoothness, it’s impressive and reliable, even in messy PNW conditions. The only real issue to report was in finding a comfortable spot to mount the Loam Lever. We got our sample before the SRAM Matchmaker mount was available however, so we’re certain this would have eliminated the thumb rub we had at first.
The Wolf’s Last Word
There’s no need to get wordy when it comes to a simple product that works well. The Loam Lever is a highlight product and the comfort, ease of use and ability to work with other brand’s droppers make it an awesome piece of gear. It is a truly refined, clean and reliable component that was well thought.
Similarly, the Rainier dropper post does what it’s supposed to do and doesn’t need much love to keep doing so. It’s a consistent performer and we’ve already experience some freezing temps in the Pacific North West and even combined with rain and mud, the post hasn’t slowed down. It’s an affordable, well built post that will get up to get you down.
Price: Rainier – $199, Loam Lever – $69;
Small, Independent Brand
Post is Affordable
People May Miss Out on Loam Lever Because of Price
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