Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

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MrP
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Joined: 12 Nov 2020, 7:23pm

Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby MrP » 12 Nov 2020, 7:32pm

Dear all

First post on here, so hoping for some useful advice.
I'm an experienced cyclist, needing a comfortable, slotted saddle for touring purposes on a tandem.
Tandems always seem to be harder on the rear than solos, for a number of reasons, perhaps because I stay seated for more of the journey.
My solo saddles are never as comfortable when fitted to the pilot seat post on a tandem.

Hence looking at Gilles Berthoud (GB) Aravis Open saddle - and wondering if it's comfort justifies it's price tag. I know its all subjective, but I'd be keen to hear from any people who have riding experience on a GB saddle.

Looking forward to hearing sound advice!

Thanks in advance

MrP

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simonineaston
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Location: ...at a cricket ground

Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby simonineaston » 12 Nov 2020, 7:51pm

Comfort is in the lap of the gods. Any hide-top saddle is a lottery - either it'll suit you & your rear or it won't... it's as likely to be a success as any second-hand Brooks. JayBay (as they'd have it...) saddles look nice, for sure, but that's a separate issue...
(rides: Brompton nano & ever-changing Moultons)

MrP
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Joined: 12 Nov 2020, 7:23pm

Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby MrP » 12 Nov 2020, 9:50pm

Wonderful!
So no experience of actually riding one? Or even seen one?
Sorry Simon, wasn't wanting generic comments, as I said, experienced cyclist.

gregoryoftours
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Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby gregoryoftours » 12 Nov 2020, 10:12pm

I had one and it was the most comfortable saddle I've ever ridden. My identical twin had one and it split his botty nigh in half, as well as giving him terrible shooting pains in his penis.
Last edited by gregoryoftours on 12 Nov 2020, 10:46pm, edited 2 times in total.

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simonineaston
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Location: ...at a cricket ground

Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby simonineaston » 12 Nov 2020, 10:28pm

I use mine on my daily ride - it suits me, but of you think my generalised comments aren't relevant, you could end up with with an expensive and uncomfortable mistake. Get your head round the fact that price doesn't equal comfort.
(rides: Brompton nano & ever-changing Moultons)

pwa
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Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby pwa » 12 Nov 2020, 10:59pm

I have an Aravis (original, not the open one) and it is now very comfortable and I wouldn't change it for any other saddle. But when it was new it was hard and not comfy. It took several hundred miles to become softer. And the front ridge needed a bit of work with a rolling pin (rolling it, not hitting it) to make the top flatter so that it doesn't put pressure on you-know-where. That all sounds like a faff but it is now as good as any saddle I have had and as the leather is thick it should stay good for ages. Better than Brooks, I think.

markjohnobrien
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Joined: 4 Oct 2007, 8:15pm

Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby markjohnobrien » 13 Nov 2020, 12:39am

I have Mente, Marie Blanque, and Solour on three bikes and they are very comfortable (and very well made). Well worth it. The rest of my bikes are Brooks Pro or B17 (normal or special).

NickJP
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Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby NickJP » 13 Nov 2020, 1:58am

If you're looking for a slotted leather saddle, check out the Rivet Pearl. I have one, and it's very comfortable. There was a review on road.cc some while ago: https://road.cc/content/review/88162-rivet-pearl-saddle.

tatanab
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Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby tatanab » 13 Nov 2020, 7:51am

Not slotted - I have 5 of them in use. I bought an Aspin (at the time , bottom of the range) about 10 years ago as an experiment having had too many Brooks fail. Obviously I liked it since I now have 5. For me they work straight out of the box. Superb quality, all parts replaceable, good service from the factory. Cosmetically, they suffer in the rain when the polish from riding it gets blasted off the nose area by the rain. It comes back in a few hundred miles. Sorry, no experience with slotted.

A suggesting - Lepper B17 equivalent, does not have a slot but has a long indentation. On sale at the moment at a price that is almost throwaway if it does not work. Brown and natural finishes are the cheapest https://hollandbikeshop.com/en-gb/bicyc ... er-saddle/

iandusud
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Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby iandusud » 13 Nov 2020, 8:13am

I regularly ride a tandem as well as solo bikes and understand where you're coming from. I use a B17 Imperial (the slotted version) on our tandem and it is the most comfortable saddle I've ever used. I used a honey coloured one as I've heard that the lighter coloured ones use better quality cuts of the hide as they show up imperfections more than the black ones. I don't know if that last bit is true but I'm very happy with mine. I appreciate that this doesn't answer your question about Gilles Berthoud saddles but hopefully it is helpful.

mikeymo
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Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby mikeymo » 13 Nov 2020, 9:53am

I've got a B17 but would like to get it further back if possible. Do Gilles Berthoud saddles have longer rails?

Thanks.

pwa
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Joined: 2 Oct 2011, 8:55pm

Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby pwa » 13 Nov 2020, 9:55am

mikeymo wrote:I've got a B17 but would like to get it further back if possible. Do Gilles Berthoud saddles have longer rails?

Thanks.

Yes. They are more like a normal saddle in that regard.

freeflow
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Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby freeflow » 13 Nov 2020, 10:30am

If you need the saddle to go back further then a Selle Anatomica H1 may be an alternative. (NOT an H2, the rails appear to be much shorter)

mikeymo
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Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby mikeymo » 13 Nov 2020, 10:54am

freeflow wrote:If you need the saddle to go back further then a Selle Anatomica H1 may be an alternative. (NOT an H2, the rails appear to be much shorter)


Thanks. I got a Selle Anatomica in the summer (not sure what model), and it does indeed go back further, but the sides rub my legs. I probably need to punch some holes in it and lace it. Though I did find it a little too soft, to be honest. The B17 actually feels good, and felt good from brand new - I think I must have a natural B17 rear end. Just that the rails are a bit short. Or the bike is a bit long.

yostumpy
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Re: Gilles Berthoud saddles - any users care to comment?

Postby yostumpy » 13 Nov 2020, 11:01am

I use a Spa B17 copy .. 'Nidd',, not slotted, but as comfy as I can be. Did venture into the GB range a couple of years back, with an Aravis, non slotted. Had a lovely feel, but I think it was a tad narrow for me, and / or it made me numb , 'down there' in about 15 mins of riding. I tried all fore and aft and nose up/down scenarios , but had to move it on, as were weren't suited. Did think about a Mente, which is wider, but my Nidd is fine.