Touring saddle

Cycle-touring, Expeditions, Adventures, Major cycle routes NOT LeJoG (see other special board)
robing
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Touring saddle

Postby robing » 14 Jan 2019, 1:11pm

I've had my dawes sg for 7 years now and I think I need to replace the saddle as it's becoming uncomfortable. It was a padded gel type. On my road bikes I have standard Giant saddles which I find comfortable so may go with that. Or maybe Brooks? Any recommendations?

geocycle
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby geocycle » 14 Jan 2019, 2:01pm

Ideally you need to try a few as we are all different. For me as a relatively upright tourist it is a Brooks B17 on one bike and the Spa Nidd (B17 cheaper clone) on the other. With these I've never needed padded shorts. You will get very many answers.

bikepacker
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby bikepacker » 14 Jan 2019, 2:13pm

My saddle problems have been well documented on this forum and in other places. I have tried most of the popular saddles and found many to be very uncomfortable for touring. For the last three years my main touring saddle has been the Selle Italia Man Gel Flow and while not perfect it does tick most of the boxes for me.

https://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/selle-it ... manganese/
There is your way. There is my way. But there is no "the way".

robing
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby robing » 14 Jan 2019, 2:25pm

Thanks for that. I've never had a leather saddle before. Just called Spa and they said takes about 500 miles to break in a spa one, bit less for a Brooks. I normally wear padded shorts (2 pairs lol) and have had some prostate issues in the past so it's quite an important choice for me. Will have a ponder. Clearly if I go for leather will need to do a lot of miles on it before I go on a major tour.

geocycle
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby geocycle » 14 Jan 2019, 2:29pm

robing wrote:Thanks for that. I've never had a leather saddle before. Just called Spa and they said takes about 500 miles to break in a spa one, bit less for a Brooks. I normally wear padded shorts (2 pairs lol) and have had some prostate issues in the past so it's quite an important choice for me. Will have a ponder. Clearly if I go for leather will need to do a lot of miles on it before I go on a major tour.


Yes I'd say 500 miles or so depending on the cow. I was surprised to find that the Nidd I got last year was comfortable from day 1 although having ridden Brooks for 15 years it might have been me broken in by the saddle....

Marcus Aurelius
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby Marcus Aurelius » 14 Jan 2019, 2:49pm

Fizik Ariones work for me, and ( oddly ) the ‘mountain bike’ memory foam saddle from Aldi this year. Everyone is different with regards to saddles though. When you find one that suits you, buy a few of them. That way when they are made obsolete by the manufacturer, you still have a saddle that you get on with, when the original wears out.

pwa
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby pwa » 14 Jan 2019, 3:07pm

robing wrote:Thanks for that. I've never had a leather saddle before. Just called Spa and they said takes about 500 miles to break in a spa one, bit less for a Brooks. I normally wear padded shorts (2 pairs lol) and have had some prostate issues in the past so it's quite an important choice for me. Will have a ponder. Clearly if I go for leather will need to do a lot of miles on it before I go on a major tour.

If you have had prostate issues I think you should go for a saddle with a cut-out in that area.

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pjclinch
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby pjclinch » 14 Jan 2019, 3:14pm

Breaking in leather saddles...

IME a leather saddle (several B17s on different bikes or a B66 in my case) starts off being on a spectrum between The Right Shape For You and The Wrong Shape For You. At or near the Right end of the spectrum they don't need any breaking in at all and are comfortable out of the box. If at or near the Wrong end of the spectrum any amount of breaking in is pointless and they'll always be horrible. At about the middle of the spectrum they'll start off nasty and get to tolerable.
The way to find out where you are on this line is to try one out...

I'm at the Right end for my Brooks saddles and love them, my wife can't abide them. But worth a go, because people that get on with them well really like them.

Pete.
Often seen riding a bike around Dundee...

robing
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby robing » 14 Jan 2019, 3:17pm

pwa wrote:
robing wrote:Thanks for that. I've never had a leather saddle before. Just called Spa and they said takes about 500 miles to break in a spa one, bit less for a Brooks. I normally wear padded shorts (2 pairs lol) and have had some prostate issues in the past so it's quite an important choice for me. Will have a ponder. Clearly if I go for leather will need to do a lot of miles on it before I go on a major tour.

If you have had prostate issues I think you should go for a saddle with a cut-out in that area.


That's probably a good idea. I think a leather saddle may not suit me. I found this thread.
viewtopic.php?t=120314

pwa
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby pwa » 14 Jan 2019, 3:24pm

robing wrote:
pwa wrote:
robing wrote:Thanks for that. I've never had a leather saddle before. Just called Spa and they said takes about 500 miles to break in a spa one, bit less for a Brooks. I normally wear padded shorts (2 pairs lol) and have had some prostate issues in the past so it's quite an important choice for me. Will have a ponder. Clearly if I go for leather will need to do a lot of miles on it before I go on a major tour.

If you have had prostate issues I think you should go for a saddle with a cut-out in that area.


That's probably a good idea. I think a leather saddle may not suit me. I found this thread.
viewtopic.php?t=120314

Normally I would encourage anyone who has not tried a leather saddle to do so, but I have heard mixed reports about the ones with a cut-out. The cut-outs on non-leather saddles do work, so if i were you I would have that feature as a requirement.

PaulaT
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby PaulaT » 14 Jan 2019, 3:32pm

You can get many of the Brooks saddles pre-softened which significantly reduces the break-in period. My Dawes Galaxy came with the non-softened version and it was quite an exercise to make it comfortable. I had a pre-softened one put on my Longstaff when I had it built and it was fine from day one.

steady eddy
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby steady eddy » 14 Jan 2019, 3:45pm

I have a redundant Brooks B17 I will happily sell to you for £45 posted. I have replaced it with a Selle smp, an odd shaped but supremely comfortable saddle. The pro version is Mark Beaumont's saddle of choice for his epic rides down the length of Africa and round the world.

mercalia
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby mercalia » 14 Jan 2019, 4:16pm

Brookes saddles vary in the thickness of the leather, it can sag quite quickly, the best soln is to drill/cut a couple of holes in the side and lace the sides together with some laces - which is what SPA does with their saddles - look at their website and the pictures to get an idea.

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mjr
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby mjr » 14 Jan 2019, 4:38pm

Lots of good opinions at viewtopic.php?f=16&t=108347 as well as mine ;-)
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.

simonhill
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Re: Touring saddle

Postby simonhill » 14 Jan 2019, 5:47pm

You could consider a sprung saddle.

I use a sprung Brooks on my touring bike. It big, heavy but like sitting in a comfy armchair. Just what I want when touring.