Author Topic: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks  (Read 14531 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline cburnett1981

Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« on: May 08, 2014, 12:04:27 am »
Hello.

Any suggestion for a saddle that doesn't have to be Brooks?

Also, as this will be my first long tour, what are signs that the seat I have won't work? 


Offline dombrosk

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2014, 05:21:39 am »
I've been very happy with Serfas RX saddles for over 10 years now.  The combination of the type of padding and the open split design have worked well for me.

In addition to touring I'm also a daily bike commuter, so my saddle gets a lot of wear.  I've been getting about 3 years of wear from the Serfas, after which the padding isn't quite as comfortable.

You mention that you're planning your first tour.  Happy riding!!!  Bike touring is a great activity that combines fitness and travel, and can be a (nearly) lifelong activity.

Before setting off, for peace of mind I'd suggest riding the length of your expected longest day on the new saddle.  For me, the Serfas involved zero break-in time and was immediately the right choice.  Having said that, one thing I've learned is that there's no real substitute for seat time when it comes to touring comfort.  Even commuting 10 miles each way every day, it takes a few 50 plus mile days to get my touring legs (and seat) happy.

I'm a big believer in supporting my local bike shop.  If your shop doesn't stock Serfas they may be able to order it in for you.

Offline Old Guy New Hobby

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2014, 07:45:46 am »
Why change saddles for a tour? If the saddle you have is OK, just go with it. If it's not, you should have changed by now. I try to make my equipment changes after a tour. Then I have lots of time to shake things down.

Everybody's anatomy is different. There is no saddle that is good for everybody. For me, the most important point of the saddle is that you can put your weight on your sitz bones. Nature put them there to support your weight. http://www.nikkiyoga.com/where-are-my-sitz-bones/

The next most important thing is how you sit on the bike. Keep an active stance. Don't rest on your hands, but use your core to hold your body up. Transfer weight to your feet when you can. Move around and sit in different positions.

The last thing is to bring some Neosporin (or similar). I find that no matter how much I prepare for a tour, I tend to develop some chaffing in the first few days. A little cream can provide a lot of comfort.

Offline John Nelson

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2014, 10:21:35 am »
In my experience, you can't really tell how well the saddle is working until after a month on tour. (If you can tell earlier than that, then you probably didn't use your saddle enough before the tour.) Your experiences training for a tour are useful, but the tour itself, with day after day of 60 miles or more, is much more demanding than your training will ever be.

My suggestion is to go with whatever saddle you have now if you have found it comfortable. If you start to develop problems, consider buying a new saddle en route. "Problems" can be anything from saddle sores to just a simple pain in the butt. On my first tour, I found the saddle getting progressively more uncomfortable after about two months on the road. I did finish the tour with that saddle, but found myself pedaling out of the saddle more and more frequently in the final weeks. I got a new saddle (a B-17) for the next tour, which was comfortable the whole way.

It's really hard to predict. Take all the standard precautions to avoid saddle sores, and then just be prepared to adjust as necessary.

Offline cburnett1981

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2014, 10:30:45 am »
Thanks everyone.  Very clear and helpful.   I have been riding longer and longer training trips for past few weeks,  with 60 miles this past Monday longest ye.t.   

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk


Offline cburnett1981

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #5 on: May 08, 2014, 10:32:34 am »
One major difference (at least I expect)  is for training I try to bike continously cor whole route.  On previous weekend tours I have taken multiple 15min plus breaks et

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk


indyfabz

  • Guest
Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2014, 10:41:02 am »
Saddles are very personal. What works for one person may not work for another. With that said, I have only toured with a Terry Men's Liberator saddle. If you buy one from REI and don't like it, you can get a full refund within one year.

Offline paddleboy17

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #7 on: May 08, 2014, 12:31:49 pm »
Hello.

Any suggestion for a saddle that doesn't have to be Brooks?

Also, as this will be my first long tour, what are signs that the seat I have won't work?

Are you opposed to a Brooks saddle?

Are you saddle agnostic or are there specific things you need?

I just don't know enough about what you need to give you any advice...

Danno

Offline zzzz

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #8 on: May 08, 2014, 02:06:20 pm »
Hi:

The guy who built my bike is one of the most respected frame builders in the country and what he told me about this is that comfort is determined by the saddle w/ the right shape for your anatomy much more so then the amount of padding. So, if your current saddle doesn't work, do not buy a squishier version of a saddle that is the same shape.

I'll also add these seat comfort related items:

Do you wear good riding shorts? Many tourer's I see wear a hybrid short, and who can blame them, Lycra is not for everyone. That said, a high quality pair of riding shorts is purpose built for the job of keeping you comfortable for hours at a time in the saddle. There is a variety out there, shorts with lots of padding to shorts w a minimum. I personally find shorts w lots of padding to feel like I'm wearing a diaper and so go in the other direction but you might be just the opposite.

I have found that my trouble on tour has been with my sit bones feeling bruised. I ride 20± hour (250-300 miles) a week in May - August and never have a hint of seat trouble. Then I leave on my trips in September where I up it to 40-50 hours of seat time a week and 5 days into the trip I feel a little bruising on the butt bones. The good news is that it goes away in 3 to 4 days.

Lastly, buy a bottle of New Skin to take with you. If you get a saddle sore it does a great job of protecting it and letting it heal in a place that a bandage is unlikely to stick.

Enjoy your trip.

pm

Offline cburnett1981

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #9 on: May 08, 2014, 09:49:52 pm »
I am a daily bike commuter anx my bike lives in the wild.   From my reading Brooks need TLC.   That's not my style.   

I consider my shorts  (performance elite bibs -  new in February)  and they are great so far.   



Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk


Offline TwoWheeledExplorer

  • World Traveler
  • *****
  • Posts: 314
  • "I am well, thank God, and in high spirits"
Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2014, 12:12:13 am »
My favorite saddle has always been the WTB SST. Very comfortable. I have an original leather version on my MTB, but I think they make it in naugahide now.
2WX: The Two-Wheeled Explorer
www.twowheeledexplorer.org
"St. Louis to the Western Sea if nothing prevents."--John Ordway, Corps of Discovery

Offline paddleboy17

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #11 on: May 09, 2014, 11:06:25 am »
I am a daily bike commuter anx my bike lives in the wild.   From my reading Brooks need TLC.   That's not my style.   

I consider my shorts  (performance elite bibs -  new in February)  and they are great so far.   



Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk

I became a Brooks convert 12 years ago.  I think the TLC you speak of is overstated.  I treat my 4 Brooks saddles once a year with a leather dressing (Proofide), and try to keep the 4 bikes dry when it rains.  I do not see that as a lot of TLC.  I have one saddle that I adjusted the tensioner once.  Once among 4 saddles over 12 years is not a lot of TLC.

Others have said that a saddle of the right shape is important and they are right.  The problem with paddled foam and plastic saddles is that they break down.  The advantage of the leather saddle is that it distorts to match your unique shape.  So a good leather saddle gets better with age.  Once your leather saddle is broken in, there will be no sit bone issues.  Of course you still have to choose the right shape, and if you need a cut out for prostate relief, then you have to pick a saddle with a cut out.

There are a couple of manufacturers for leather saddles, and Wallingford Bikes (www.wallbike.com), carrys most of them, and has a generous return policy.  Most of my leather saddles have come from them.

Brooks has a new line of saddles based on a rubber-cotton composite.  They are supposed to be maintenance free, but that is all I know about them.

I have broken in 5 Brooks's black saddles.  Breaking in took 1 day for a Conquest,  2 B-17s, and a B-17 Imperial,  a couple of weeks for another B-17 Imperial, and It took all summer for a stubborn Team PRO saddle (I later sold the saddle to a collector for use in a display).  You results would probably be different.
Danno

Offline JDFlood

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2014, 11:10:45 am »
ahh, ahh... other than Brooks... does not compute... I have no response for that. :-)

Offline westrid_dad

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #13 on: May 23, 2014, 09:45:03 pm »
I am a daily bike commuter anx my bike lives in the wild.   From my reading Brooks need TLC.   That's not my style.   



I just mounted my new Brooks Cambrium saddle on my Surly Ogre.  This doesn't require the standard "TLC" you refer to, nor break-in that traditional Brooks leather saddles do.

http://youtu.be/aCi0S9HW1iE


Offline e46rick

Re: Saddle Suggestion other than Brooks
« Reply #14 on: May 25, 2014, 11:15:08 pm »
Coming from a road racing background, the weight and clunkyness of a Brooks saddle never appealed to me.  But I finally broke down and put one on my touring bike, and I'm glad I did.  While the Brooks doesn't necessarily feel overly "comfortable" when I first jump on the bike, it doesn't bother me at all after riding on it all day for multiple days.  That is worth something IMO. 

You didn't mention why you are opposed to a Brooks, but they are definitely worth a try if you haven't yet.