Words by Jared Erickson
Here at WC, we are all about the details on our bikes, and quite frankly, I just can’t sleep at night if I don’t have my favorite dropper lever installed on my bike. Having a quality lever with a nice sealed bearing and smooth actuation is one of those things that we have come to know and love and can never live without. A couple of the usual suspects are the PNW Loam Lever and Wolf Tooth ReMote, and we figured we might as well put them both head to head. Let's go!
Wolf Tooth has become popular in recent years for their high quality chainrings, accessories, and dropper post remotes among others. They make the ReMote with various mounting options from a standard 22.2 handlebar clamp to SRAM Matchmaker, Shimano (I Spec II, AB and EV), Hope and Magura, as well as 2 lever options between the Light Action for a slightly easier actuation of your post and the classic ReMote. They even have kits to convert that pesky Reverb remote to a cable-actuated hydraulic dropper.
The ReMote retails for $64.95, and does not include cable or housing like some others. The ReMote features a breakaway point in the design which allows the remote to brake free in the event of a crash, versus having the entire remote snap off – the breakaway point is $5 and is easily replaceable.
The PNW Loam lever is another heavy hitter in the dropper post lever sector and is another one of our longtime favorites. The peeps over at PNW make some cool products and the Loam lever is no exception. Mounting options include a standard handlebar clamp, SRAM Matchmaker, and Shimano I Spec II. There are also several color options for the pad on the lever including Orange, Grey, Black, Teal and Red, to suit your customization preferences.
The MSRP for the Loam lever is $69 (nice) and it does include a Jagwire cable which is nice for when you are upgrading that lousy old lever and frayed cable. Another sweet feature or maybe a compliment, is the ability to mix and match your dropper lever with your shifter lever, as PNW also makes the Shifty lever that gives you the same awesome ergonomic lever feel as the Loam, but for your X01 or XX1 shifter. If you are really looking for the next level of customization, the Loam and Shifty levers will get your cockpit dialed.
So now for the moment you have all been waiting for… Which one is the best? For me, this argument is like the Fox vs Rockshox, it ends up being personal preference since both of these products are the best of the best. The extra compatibility and breakaway feature of the Wolf tooth are nice positives, however the sweet injection molded colored pad of the PNW Loam and the ability to match with the Shifty lever are rad as well – it really comes down to which features mean more to you and which you could live without. Which one are you choosing?
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