Author Topic: Women's touring saddle  (Read 17504 times)

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Offline cj

Women's touring saddle
« on: February 01, 2008, 09:07:41 pm »
I'm amazed at how difficult it is to find a woman's opinion on who makes a good one.  I'm 5'8" and 125lbs (no natural padding back there) and not convinced a gel seat will do me right.  
Men seem to like the B17 ... but do ladies?

Certainly any leads to useful forums or reviews on this topic would be great too.

Thanks!


Offline whittierider

Women's touring saddle
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2008, 02:56:33 am »
Try http://forums.teamestrogen.com/forumdisplay.php?f=36 which is the first page of the index of the saddles section of a women's cycling forum.  There appear to be thousands of saddle-related posts by women.


Offline staehpj1

Women's touring saddle
« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2008, 07:46:44 pm »
I have heard women say nice things about Terry saddles.


Offline valygrl

Women's touring saddle
« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2008, 10:57:35 pm »
I think you have to resort to trial and error, it's just too person-specific.

I ride a Terry Butterfly on my tour bike, rode the same saddle on my road bike forever, and just replaced it with a Sella Italia Lady Transam, which is exactly the same shape.  Personally I like a saddle with a fairly hard surface but some flex - don't like gel at all.  

You can't tell which one you are going to like by some kind of wide butt = wide saddle, narrow butt = narrow saddle math.  I hear you can get your sit-bones measured, which I think is the crucial dimension.

Terry has an excellent policy - you can buy any of their saddles (direct from their web site), ride it and return or exchange it (30 days) if you don't like it.  I tried a Terry Zero-X at one point, and even though the measurements all looked identical to the Butterfly, it was horrible for me and I exchanged for a new Butterfly Ti, even though I had ridden it for a couple of weeks.

There's one female tourist who posts extensively on bikeforums.net who is a huge supporter of the B-17. And I think they make a women's model.  I never tried it, since I'm happy with the one(s) I have.

There's a women's forum on bikeforums.net, where saddles are sometimes discussed.

Hope that helps.


Offline bogiesan

Women's touring saddle
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2008, 10:21:34 am »
> Terry has an excellent policy - you can buy any of their saddles
(direct from their web site), ride it and return or exchange it (30 days)
if you don't like it.  

Yes, I'd want to make sure I liked the saddle before taking off on a long
tour.  Curious how far a woman needs to ride on a saddle before she
knows it's right for her anatomy, bike, and riding style. Back when I
rode upright bikes, I changed saddles every 500 miles or so before I
found one that I could ride on a century. Adjusted post height and
saddle position every 20 miles before I founnd a good fit.

(Then got my recumbent with its 4" cushion and full back support!)

david boise ID

go, ristretto, FCP/AE
"Read the manual."
I play go. I use Macintosh. Of course I ride a recumbent

Offline biker_james

Women's touring saddle
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2008, 08:04:23 am »
I think you can definitely do better than gel saddles for riding any distance. My wife is very happy with the Brooks Professional we put on her bike. It is the mens model, but I know that Brooks also makes some women specific models, with slightly different shape to them. Check out Wallbike for more Brooks info. I believe they even have a good return policy if it doesn't work for you.


Offline janetanorth

Women's touring saddle
« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2008, 01:27:14 am »
i had a sella gel saddle when i first started touring, but over time and as i became a better rider it began to work against me. it became so painful that my one desire was to set it on fire.
i have used a terry liberator which was comfortable from the onset. it has held up well over 8 years. i can wear any type of clothing and remain comfortable.
i feel that if you go for a more serious saddle, such as a brooks, or terry damselfly, you will have to be consistant with your use of padded cycling shorts until it is "broken in". i have the damselfly due to it's very narrow profile to relieve inner thigh chafing, but i wouldn't ride far on it without a chamois.
you didn't mention if you had any problems or concerns with previous seats. try:
http://terrybikes.forest.net/ftp/pub/2007_saddles.pdf
for a very helpful chart.
good luck-janet


Offline Tourista829

Re: Women's touring saddle
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2009, 01:58:32 am »
    Bontrager (Trek) offers a saddle called the Inform Woman's Saddle. They basically guarantee fit with a 90 day
    trial period. They have you sit on a gel that turns colors to see where your sit bone is on the saddle. You simply,
    match the color of the gel to the color on the tag of the saddle. I like that they offer a number of widths for
    woman. Now some on the forum might think this is nonsense, a bit of hocus pocus, but the bike shop, I saw it
    in, Bicycle Outfitters of Seminole, Fl. swear by it. They are a store that caters to bicycle touring and they
    actually stock Surly's. So.....it would give you a serious break in period and they are made for women. My
    girlfriend is almost 5'7" and 106 pounds. Like you, she does not have any cushion where she needs it. She is
    currently riding a Serfas saddle made for woman with a wide center cut out and wider seat. It has been the best
    so far but not perfect. I know several woman who ride a Womans Brooks Professional. They like it but they ranged
    from 250 to 500 miles before they adjusted to it. I ride a Mens Brooks Professional and love it. We already tried
    the Terry Liberator X and it was too hard, so we returned it. We may try the Inform saddle for her. Good luck 
    sorting out your saddle issues. Let us know what you come up with. Bob & Dot

Offline centrider

Re: Women's touring saddle
« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2009, 08:48:25 pm »
> Terry has an excellent policy - you can buy any of their saddles
(direct from their web site), ride it and return or exchange it (30 days)
if you don't like it.  

Yes, I'd want to make sure I liked the saddle before taking off on a long
tour.  Curious how far a woman needs to ride on a saddle before she
knows it's right for her anatomy, bike, and riding style. Back when I
rode upright bikes, I changed saddles every 500 miles or so before I
found one that I could ride on a century. Adjusted post height and
saddle position every 20 miles before I founnd a good fit.

(Then got my recumbent with its 4" cushion and full back support!)

david boise ID

go, ristretto, FCP/AE
"Read the manual."

I ride a Brooks B17 on my touring bike and Brooks Team Pro on my Giant TCR.  That said, Wallingford has a 6 mos trial period on their Brooks', and there is a new B18 Women's Saddle.

It takes a while to break in a leather saddle, but if you can stay with it you'll never have to buy another saddle.

Offline Tourista829

Re: Women's touring saddle
« Reply #9 on: February 23, 2009, 09:10:21 am »
With Terry, their 30 day return policy isn't truly 30 days. They start the meter running when they actually ship the saddle and the saddle must be back, in their hands, within 30 days. By my calculations, to be safe, maybe 20 days of riding. We purchased two Liberators, and returned both. I think they may have worked out but at $75 a piece, was not willing to eat the cost of the saddles. They were designed for an upright position. They did promptly credit our card. Very good company. We live in Florida, but I wonder how people in the colder climates have a chance to do a true test. I guess they wait until the weather gets better but not always practical. We are going to try the Bontrager Inform Saddle. It is from a local dealer and it has a true 90 day trail period. We also like their fit session to see where ones sitbone is on the saddle.