Brooks saddle

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
wheneverican
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Brooks saddle

Postby wheneverican » 1 Feb 2009, 12:02pm

Hi, I have a Dawes Ultra and have put about 750 miles on it since last summer. It came with a Brooks B17 leather saddle (not the sprung version).
Most of my use has been commuting about 3 miles to work so do problems. However I am training now for LEJOG in May and have started increasing the miles. After about 12 miles it get really uncomfortable. I'm wearing Humvess with tights under them but i find the padding doesnt actually cover my back side "bones"
Is it a case of just getting used to it (if so howl ong..?) or should i look for a padded saddle now whilst i still have 3 months left for training?
Any advice appreciated
Simon

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ersakus
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Postby ersakus » 1 Feb 2009, 12:08pm

Brooks are supposed to mould into your shape but with b17 (standard) this is can take quite a while (so I'm told).

I'm yet to break my b17 in (500 miles on it).

I have an aged b68 model on my commuter which amazingly got broken in after a few hundred miles but the "b68 aged" are made soft on purpose. It feels like a hammock now. Nice feeling.

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leftpoole
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Re: Brooks saddle

Postby leftpoole » 1 Feb 2009, 12:44pm

wheneverican wrote:Hi, I have a Dawes Ultra and have put about 750 miles on it since last summer. It came with a Brooks B17 leather saddle (not the sprung version).
Most of my use has been commuting about 3 miles to work so do problems. However I am training now for LEJOG in May and have started increasing the miles. After about 12 miles it get really uncomfortable. I'm wearing Humvess with tights under them but i find the padding doesnt actually cover my back side "bones"
Is it a case of just getting used to it (if so howl ong..?) or should i look for a padded saddle now whilst i still have 3 months left for training?
Any advice appreciated
Simon


I use Brooks B17 on all my bikes. It takes about 500-1000 miles for a saddle to bed in. Use a good coating of Proofhide and then simply suffer! It will be very worthwhile.
John.

random37
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Joined: 19 Sep 2008, 4:41pm

Postby random37 » 1 Feb 2009, 1:26pm

I have a B17 narrow, and a B17 wide. The wide is much, much comfier, IMO.
But lots of people I know hate them. Definitely not for everyone.

tad
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Joined: 9 Jan 2007, 11:53am

Postby tad » 1 Feb 2009, 1:53pm

I too have suffered the pain and discomfort involved in breaking in a new Brooks, putting the miles in and proofide is favourite. It's worth it in the long run though. I've got another on the way as we speak, the commute to work's not going to be the most pleasant for a while.

Take a look on Sheldon Brown's site, he has advice on how to speed up the process which will unfortubately probably void any warranty.

thirdcrank
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Postby thirdcrank » 1 Feb 2009, 3:56pm

wheneverican

I'm a life-long Brooks user but you sometimes have to accept that you may never get comfy on one.

In normal circumstances, I'd say give it a while and use plenty of Proofide. The fact that your End to End ride is looming puts you in a bit of a quandary because you really do need a comfy saddle for that sort of undertaking. Also, as you appreciate, you need to build up your mileage in preparation and you can hardly do that if you are crippled after only a dozen miles. I'd say you need at least a couple of months to ensure a new saddle is comfy before a really big ride so I'd be careful about persisting with this one for too long, in these circumstances.

I should bear in mind that the big muscles you use for cycling are the same ones you sit on and for many new to cycling, the discomfort they attribute to the hardness of the saddle is actually caused by the tenderness of their own backside. You are probably beyond that stage. Some riders prefer a hard saddle - I'm surprised Mick F has not come on to say he is one of them.

JohnW
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Postby JohnW » 1 Feb 2009, 6:21pm

Wheneverican -

I put a new B17 onto one of my bikes in May 2005 - first ride was 34 miles - second ride was 119 miles.

I've now done 10,032 miles on it, and never - repeat never - had any problem at all.

I "Proofhided" top and underside quite liberally when it was new, and now I "Proofhide" the top every month or so - very, very sparingly.

I once put a new Brooks Pro onto a bike on the morning of our section's 240 (miles) in 24 (hours) Standard Ride, and I didn't have any soreness at all.

People do have varying experiences with real solid leather saddles, and I sympathise with anyone whose bum is not comfy, but don't be disheartened - I've never had a problem.

Good luck with it - one thing though, is your saddle in the correct position in relation to the pedals, and are your bars in the correct position in relation to the saddle? It does make a difference.

I've just put a new Brooks Pro onto a new bike - first ride was 42 miles and now 111 miles later, it's comfy for me. Of course, now that I've bragged, Sod's law may now apply, and this saddle may very well develope discomfort forever in places I didn't previously know existed. Probably serve me right too!!!!

It is possible that my quite well padded bum could be helping me of course.

random37
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Joined: 19 Sep 2008, 4:41pm

Postby random37 » 1 Feb 2009, 6:33pm

Maybe put a wanted up here for some other saddles? No harm in trying a couple out. The Specialised Body Geometry is nice.

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Simon L6
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Joined: 4 Jan 2007, 12:43pm

Postby Simon L6 » 1 Feb 2009, 7:44pm

Bin it. Get a Fi'z'ik. Lighter, more comfortable, more durable.

glueman
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Joined: 16 Mar 2007, 1:22pm

Postby glueman » 1 Feb 2009, 7:49pm

Simon L6 wrote: more durable.

Surely not. Only cockroaches and B17s (and maybe Carradice) will be left when the balloon goes up.

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Simon L6
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Postby Simon L6 » 1 Feb 2009, 7:53pm

The B17 will undoubtedly survive Deep Impact by meteorite, but wheneverican's derriere will have given up the ghost long before that happens.

By the way - my Fi'z'ik Pave has 40,000 miles on the clock and is as good as new. Beat that Mr. Smellyleatherbottom!

glueman
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Postby glueman » 1 Feb 2009, 7:59pm

I couldn't possibly use a saddle with multiple apostrophes in the title. You'll be telling me it doesn't even have copper rivets or bag loops next.

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Simon L6
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Postby Simon L6 » 1 Feb 2009, 8:09pm

true, it has more apostrophes than Birmingham, and lacks (if lack it is) rivets. It has not bag loops, but, then again, those ghastly leather bags that one fits to bag loops have long been supplanted by shaped bags that strap to the (hopefully carbon) rails. So much more convenient, and aerodynamic.

PW
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Joined: 23 Jan 2007, 10:50am
Location: N. Derbys.

Postby PW » 1 Feb 2009, 8:14pm

Naah, you can't carry the kitchen sink in a wedgepack - and one of my saddles still survives from a batch I bought in the 70s. 40,000? it's not broken in yet! :wink:
If at first you don't succeed - cheat!!

glueman
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Joined: 16 Mar 2007, 1:22pm

Postby glueman » 1 Feb 2009, 8:22pm

That must be the much vaunted credit card touring I've heard so much about. My Longflap can fit one of those suitcases the girls on Sale of the Century (or was it Take Your pick?) used to flash at the audience, the kind Great Train Robbers left remote farmhouses holding before decamping to Bolivia.

Plastic is sooo pre-credit crunch. I might suggest a Carradice to mobile library services.