If you thought that dropper posts were a thoroughly modern invention, then you'll likely never have heard of the Hite-Rite. Created back in 1984 by mountain bike legends Joe Breeze and Josh Angell, it was the first system that allowed riders to drop and raise their saddle on the fly - and now it's returned from the dead, with a load of new old stock appearing on eBay.
Okay, it's not quite as refined as a modern dropper post - it's essentially just a spring that clamps to your seatpost at one end and your quick-release collar at the other, allowing you up to a whopping 4.5" of drop, depending on which model was being used. It did require you to keep your saddle straight with your knees and there's no remote way to operate it, but at the time it was much better than having to get off your bike and adjust the saddle height.
Apparently, what's on sale now are the last of the original batch of Hite-Rites that have been sat in storage somewhere for over 30 years, though all some in original packaging. Although it was a solid idea, it never really caught on to the extent that modern dropper posts have now done, possibly because of the few foibles of the system - such as the fact it's using your frame as a wearing component.
Even so, we reckon that one of these would be perfect on a modern gravel bike as well as a retro mountain bike build. It's lightweight, mechanically simple and utterly reliable. It's also pretty cheap for a piece of mountain bike history at $48 too.
We're currently hovering a finger over the buying button - best hope we don't beat you to it. Check out more details or buy one here anyway:
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