As the Seatpost is one of the most crucial bike components, it’s paramount to get the right fit. However, there are plenty of options and too much confusion around bike seat posts.
That’s why it’s tough to choose between 26.8, 27.2, or 31.6. Still, there must be some differences, right?
So, what are the differences between 26.8 vs 27.2 vs 31.6 Seatpost?
Compared to 26.8, or 31.6, 27.2 seat posts are much better if you have thin tubing. Also, it’s the most common choice for road bikes along with the 26.8 seat posts. However, 31.6 diameter tubing is ideal for MTB bikes and they are also quite rigid. Still, a 27.2 Seatpost is ideal if you want more flexibility.
While you’ve already seen some differences here, there are plenty more to discuss.
Let’s not waste a moment’s breath and see what the rest of those dissimilarities are!
Quick Comparison of the Seatposts
The most important thing regarding seat posts is choosing the perfect fit for you. Otherwise, you won’t even have an enjoyable riding experience. You’ll always feel like something’s scratching your behind!
So, don’t you think there should be a good amount of thought before getting one? As you’re mostly concerned with 3 different tubing diameters, let’s check the primary differences-
|Factors||26.8 Seatpost||27.2 Seatpost||31.6 Seatpost|
|Size||Narrow & small||Medium||Wide|
|Design||A bit too flexible||Flexible||Rigid|
|Comfortability||Can be a bit uncomfortable||Mostly comfortable||Comfortable|
|Suitable for||Road bikes||Road bikes & MTB||Road bikes & MTB|
I know that you’ll probably want a better explanation about the details. So, let’s check out the extensive comparison of these three seat posts.
Extended Look at the Seatposts
Although you already looked at the primary differences, the secrets are yet to be revealed. Also, don’t forget that these seat posts comparison can vary depending on the quality.
For example, alloy seat posts in carbon frames will have a very different result than metal seat posts. So, do keep that in mind.
With that, let’s start comparing.
Weight & Size:
As seen from the comparison chart above, the weight of these seat post are quite interesting. And that’s only because of the availability. Let me explain that a bit.
Between 26.8 vs 27.2 Seatpost sizes, 26.8 seat posts are obviously narrower. Also, 26.8 seat posts are usually less wide in diameter than the rest two.
However, there are not many options for 26.8 as 27.2 and 31.6 are the classic standard. That’s why the average weight of the available 26.8 seat posts is a bit more than 27.2.
On the other hand, there are plenty of manufacturers of 27.2 seat posts. Some even make ultra-lightweight 27.2 seat posts.
So, between 26 8 vs 27.2 Seatpost weight, the 27.2 seat posts weigh at least 50g lighter.
Lastly, 31.6 Seatpost weight is around 180-230g (depending on the size).
Another important thing to remember is that all the comparisons are based on no bike offset. So, whether you want to go for Seatpost offset or no offset, decide beforehand.
Summary: 26 8 vs 27 2 vs 31.6 size comparison ends up with 27.2 winning all the way.
27.2 seat posts are designed with better ergonomics in mind. The reason why I say that is because you get better flexibility with 27.2 seat posts. They feel less harsh and easy to ride on most terrains.
The same thing can be said for 26.8 seat posts. That’s why many manufacturers are now making narrower seat posts like 26.8 or lower.
On the other hand, 31.6 seat posts are designed to take on heavy loads. Some 31.6 seat posts have a max rider limit of up to 250+ pounds! So, these seat posts are made to last for a long time.
Summary: 27.2 and 26.8 seat posts are generally more flexible to use. 31.6 ones are rigid and better for harsh terrains.
Now, let’s come to the 26.8 vs 27.2 Seatpost clamp discussion. If your seat tube is too wide, then you’ll need to clamp the 26.8 a bit tighter. However, as the 27.2 Seatpost diameter is 0.4mm large, the clamp does not need excess tightening.
Now, the best thing about seat posts is that you can use shims to get a better fit. However, 26.8 to 27.2 Seatpost shim can be very hard to find.
So, take that into consideration before getting 26.8 seat posts.
With 31.6 seat posts, you’re looking at a wider clamp as the tube has to match it. Otherwise, your seat post will feel loose and it can even break if you’re not careful.
Also, keep in mind that a 31.6 seat post clamp will add some extra weight to the bike as well.
Summary: In most cases, 26.8 seat posts will require a shim for better rigidity. However, 27.2 and 31.6 seat posts can easily fit inside most seat tubes.
27.2 seat post has always been the king for narrow tubing. There was even no competitor in that regard. However, in modern days, the 26.8 seat posts have also become quite popular for road bikes.
Still, riders prefer to go with the classic 27.2 more often than not. That’s why you’ll see more 27.2 seat posts on the road compared to the others.
Here are some premium-grade 27.2 seat posts to check out-
- Bynccea Bike Seatpost 27.2mm is one of the best MTB seat posts I used. They even come with a 1-year money return policy!
- Another great bike Seatpost is the ZUKKA Bike Seatpost 27.2. You can get up to 10Nm torque with this one.
On the other hand, when it comes to the MTB category, 31.6 is the dominant force. As mountain bikes tend to have stiffer and heavier tubing, it’s best to go with 31.6 seat posts. Those will provide better actuation and movement.
But finding the right 31.6 seat post is the ordeal, isn’t it? Well, to ease your pain, I’ve looked at some of the recent bestsellers on the market. Have a peek-
- FOMTOR 31.6 Bicycle Seatpost is one of the best as many riders also claim it to be.
- If you want both look and functionality, then check out Thinvik Bike Seat Post Matte Aluminum Alloy. It’s really hard to find such an incredible seat post at an insanely low cost!
Summary: If you have a road bike, then go for 26.8 or 27.2 seat posts depending on your preference. For mountain bikes, 31.6 will give you better results.
At the end of the day, you’ve to decide on just one Seatpost and that’s a tough call. So, let’s go through the comparisons one last time to clear out any doubts.
First of all, if you have a skinner build, 26.8 can be a good option. While it’s not significantly rigid, it still can hold on to the clamp very well. So, if you want, I can surely suggest to you some good quality 26.8 seat posts that won’t break your banks!
- SUNLITE Classic Alloy Seat Post 26.8 can be a good inclusion to your road bike.
- Ultracycle Seatpost 26.8X350mm Silver is an all-alloy bike seat post that ensures longer durability.
Moving forward to 27.2 seat posts. These are all-around bike posts that can be rocked on both roads and mountain trails. Additionally, they are much more forgiving than the other two. So, if that sits well with you, then there’s no harm getting 27.2 ones.
Lastly, the most lengthy and wide Seatpost to discuss. 31.6 seat posts are rigid, less forgiving yet the perfect fit for MTB racing. If you just want to focus on the hill and offroad terrains, I can’t see any other option other than this!
So, there you have it. Now, you just gotta make a decision and move on! Also, don’t forget to follow a simple bike maintenance chart for better longevity.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is the most common seatpost size?
The most common Seatpost size is 27.2 mm, both for MTB and road bikes. That has been the golden standard for centuries and now there are more options available as well. You can get heavier allow as well as ultra-light carbon fiber 27.2 seat posts. However, in recent days, 25.4 seatposts are becoming popular too.
What length of Seatpost do I need?
The Seatpost length you need is dependent on your tubing. If it can hold seat posts from 280mm to 400mm, then you can go for anything in that range. Still, it’s best to see the seat tube requirements or manual to be safe.
Will a 31.6 Seatpost fit a 30.9 frame?
No, you can’t fit a 31.6 Seatpost in a 30.9 frame. Because the seat tube has to be wider than the seat post. If the seat post is wider than the tube itself, then you won’t be able to sort it in. You’ll just have to buy a new seat post that’s narrower than 30.9 frames. For example, 27.2 or 28.6.
Ah! Finally. You’re now fully equipped with all the information you need. I don’t think you’ll have trouble deciding between 26.8 vs 27.2 vs 31.6 Seatpost anymore.
One last tip for you. Try to go through the seat post’s manual before extensive use. That’ll give you a proper idea about troubleshooting and maintenance of the seat post!