Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

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Vetus Ossa
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Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby Vetus Ossa » 11 Jan 2020, 12:13pm

I don’t often choose to ride in the rain but last week I got caught in a downpour that lasted the 20 miles I had to cycle to reach home.
I wasn’t too worried about getting my Brooks saddle wet as I figured as I was sitting on it it would remain dry. I figured wrong. I got absolutely soaked through and so did my saddle and looked like the picture below, only wet, and it dried out like that.
I have only done about 1500 miles on it and is now very comfortable so want to keep it, but I just hate the way it looks.
I know some will say its natural saddle wear and I should ignore it and just ride it but I would like to smarten it up somewhat. To me it looks really odd how the colour has faded in that area, almost I would think how it looked before the leather was treated at the factory during manufacture, is that normal?
To be honest I wish I had bought a black one and have been wondering if I could dye this one black, has anyone had experience of doing this? Failing dyeing it I would at least like to have it an even shade of brown.
Anyone have any advice on this please.
I have written to Brooks but not expecting an answer any time soon.
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Cyril Haearn
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby Cyril Haearn » 11 Jan 2020, 12:21pm

Wait until it is completely dry, might well look different then
I have a plastic cover on my saddle, saves wear on trousers too
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pwa
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby pwa » 11 Jan 2020, 12:25pm

Cyril Haearn wrote:Wait until it is completely dry, might well look different then
I have a plastic cover on my saddle, saves wear on trousers too

I've ridden with a nylon cover on a Brooks and its works. I couldn't feel the difference in use, the cover lasted several thousand miles, and the saddle got a lot less wet in the rain.

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Vetus Ossa
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby Vetus Ossa » 11 Jan 2020, 12:36pm

Well unfortunately it is completely dry and yes, I wish I had had a cover over it but didn’t.

Bowedw
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby Bowedw » 11 Jan 2020, 12:59pm

Presumably the leathers are coloured somehow, black, blue, green etc. I would think a saddler or shoe repair person would be able to help or at least offer advice. Some upholsterers also refurb leather for cars. Maybe an internet search could offer some help. Regular proofhide seems to have kept mine ok so far.

pwa
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby pwa » 11 Jan 2020, 1:22pm

If you are going to dye it I would imagine making the undamaged areas look the same as the damaged areas would be a fist step. Then dye, then proofide.

rjb
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby rjb » 11 Jan 2020, 1:26pm

You may find something to help you in this trike riders blog. He has used and abused many saddles over the years.
https://pedal-trikes.blogspot.com/search?q=Brooks :wink:
At the last count:- Focus Variado, Peugeot 531 pro, Dawes Discovery Tandem, Dawes Kingpin, Raleigh 20, Falcon K2 MTB dropped bar tourer, Longstaff trike conversion on a Falcon corsa. :D

nsew
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby nsew » 11 Jan 2020, 1:34pm

Saddle looks fine to me and is developing character. Just rub a good quality dubbin into the wetted area. Let it soak into the leather for a few hours, buff it off. It doesn’t look like the seat bone area has been affected. That’s where people horribly mis-shape a leather saddle by leaving out in the rain and then riding. I use the identical saddle to yours, only ever apply dubbin to both sides. After 15000 miles it’s darker / lighter in all areas but importantly firm. I always keep a rolled up lightweight 5L dry bag attached through the rails. What I would caution against is soaking in that Neats? oil that some do. Those saddles look like painful hammock junk. The dyed saddles stain clothing, natural browns don’t.

Brucey
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby Brucey » 11 Jan 2020, 1:56pm

I don't think the leather has been dyed properly; the colour shouldn't just 'rub off' like that, it isn't meant to be just a thin coating, not on saddles. Very possibly they have changed the way they do it; leathers are meant to be stained right through during the manufacturing process, aren't they?

FWIW if you like the light colour, I think that wiping the saddle with a suitable solvent (eg acetone) might remove dark colour from other parts of the saddle. Last resort though; first step is to hear back from Brooks.

cheers
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Vetus Ossa
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby Vetus Ossa » 11 Jan 2020, 2:06pm

Brucey wrote:I don't think the leather has been dyed properly; the colour shouldn't just 'rub off' like that, it isn't meant to be just a thin coating, not on saddles. Very possibly they have changed the way they do it; leathers are meant to be stained right through during the manufacturing process, aren't they?

FWIW if you like the light colour, I think that wiping the saddle with a suitable solvent (eg acetone) might remove dark colour from other parts of the saddle. Last resort though; first step is to hear back from Brooks.

cheers

as you say Brucey, I don't think it was dyed properly either, it almost looks like it's been painted and has rubbed off in that area.
I will wait for a reply from Brooks before I do anything to it.

Brucey
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby Brucey » 11 Jan 2020, 2:23pm

a thought occurs to me; that the saddle was originally meant to be the lighter colour but failed QA perhaps because there was a blemish in the leather. It may be that they rework such saddles by hand-staining them a darker colour or something.

I'd need to compare it with others to be sure, but I think the chamfered edge at the bottom of the saddle is darker than normal, which suggests that the whole thing has been stained at a late stage in manufacture. IIRC the usual thing is that the saddle isn't touched up or recoloured after the chamfers are put on, thus the chamfers are usually slightly lighter in colour when the saddle is new...?

cheers
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

rjb
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby rjb » 11 Jan 2020, 2:26pm

rjb wrote:You may find something to help you in this trike riders blog. He has used and abused many saddles over the years.
https://pedal-trikes.blogspot.com/search?q=Brooks :wink:


Click the next posts button at the bottom of the page to reveal further pages to this tome. :lol:
At the last count:- Focus Variado, Peugeot 531 pro, Dawes Discovery Tandem, Dawes Kingpin, Raleigh 20, Falcon K2 MTB dropped bar tourer, Longstaff trike conversion on a Falcon corsa. :D

dim
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby dim » 11 Jan 2020, 2:54pm

looks like chemical damage (perhaps washing powder was not fully rinsed from your trousers?) .... or chaffing from wet jeans?

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andrew_s
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby andrew_s » 11 Jan 2020, 2:54pm

Put a bit of proofhide on and keep riding.
In 3 months it will be completely normal.

alexnharvey
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Re: Rain damaged Brooks saddle.

Postby alexnharvey » 11 Jan 2020, 2:56pm

My black one is wearing off similarly although not quite as extreme. I think a wax polish, dubbin or proofide will restore write a bit of the colour. A shoe that is stripped of polish also gets a lot lighter.