Saddles - can we be more helpful?

What bike and bike bits should you buy?
RJKflyer
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Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby RJKflyer » Fri Nov 09, 2012 18:00 pm

I've just changed mine and as it was a little pricey I was nervous. Thank God it is absolutely brilliant so far.

I trawled many posts regarding saddles, but the crux (or is it crutch?) of it is that it is so individual. So i figured perhaps we could all help each other by giving more than "great for me" etc...

However, we all want some sort of steer, so would it help if we posted what we have, how we rate it, AND something about our physique?

Saddle: Selle Italia SLR Superflow
Size: 130
Weight: 180g
Cover: leather
Rails: round Ti
Character: massive central cut-out, slight padding

Seatpost: Storck carbon (possibly an indication of compliance in this area)
Frame: Enigma titanium (again, compliance - if you've ali frame and post, you might need a bit more give in e.g. padding)
Type: sportive bordering on racey

Sitbones: ca. 100mm (because there seems not to be a close correlation between makes and sizes for sitbone width)
Height: 5' 6"
Weight: 65kg

Typical time in saddle: 2 hrs
Max tested: 3 hrs

Comments: turned out to be great under all tested conditions so far: climbing in-saddle, cruising, in drops, on bars etc. Finish is first class. Only minor observation is that in some bib shorts it feels quite slippery although this hasn't created a problem. Why did I change - prior saddle (a Velo Ti railed one) was very good, but on longer rides I could feel central pressure. Chose the SLR Superflow as it has a huge cutout.

Anything you guys think I've missed that would add to the 'helpful' assessment?

And, am I suggesting something useful?

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Hoopdriver
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby Hoopdriver » Fri Nov 09, 2012 19:05 pm

I am afraid not. Saddles are highly personal and no kind of verbal description or subjective or objective analysis anyone can give or write is going to be meaningful to anyone else. This truly is a trial and error field. We are all built differently, ride differently, sit on bicycle saddles differently and have different tolerances of comfort and discomfort. There is no way of quantifying these variables. They are unique, idiosyncratic and highly personal.

northpole
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby northpole » Sat Nov 10, 2012 10:23 am

Sadly I agree with the previous poster. It would be marvelous to have an objective guide to the perfect saddle. I have no idea how that definition could be usefully provided. The variables must be immense. The established pattern will continue - you either get lucky with first saddle choice, or you end up with a collection of saddles that didn't quite make the cut. To my mind, the most frustrating aspect of bikes!! Hence the saddle swap thread....

Peter

crankycrank
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby crankycrank » Sat Nov 10, 2012 22:50 pm

Also in agreement with the previous posters. Just too many variables to make any generalisations. Try before you buy still seems to be the only viable method. Kind of like saying big men should only marry women with wide hips and......well, you get the point.

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Sprool
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby Sprool » Mon Nov 12, 2012 23:21 pm

Try before you buy - where can I go to test out some different saddles prior to purchase? My Scott S30 has me going numb on rollers after 30 minutes. It's much better on the road as I'm not pedalling in such a static position, but I'm thinking there's probably a more comfortable saddle out there which will let me cycles over 2 hours without starting to go numb. With so much choice and such a personal thing I really need to take a few home for a ride out before I know if its going to work for me or not. No LBS in my area (Huddersfield) has the facility to do this, as far as I know..

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passout
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby passout » Tue Nov 13, 2012 09:51 am

I agree with the others. That said you can measure the distance between your sit bones & that can give a 'rough' idea of what 'might' work for you - width wise at least.

Personally having a short, medium width, fairly firm saddle with decent cut out works for me in most cases. I really like the Selle SMP range of saddles for road use & the WTB Devo off road. It is highly subjective though.
'Happiness serves hardly any other purpose than to make unhappiness possible' Marcel Proust.

MichaelW
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby MichaelW » Tue Nov 13, 2012 11:24 am

I have an old white, leather covered saddle from Specialized that came with a used bike. It is way more comfortable than my San Marco Rolls or even Brooks B17.
I am 5'11, very thin with sitbones about 100mm apart and testicles that drop quite low with a pronounced ridge. I recomend this saddle to anyone with a similar set of testicles.

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Sprool
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby Sprool » Tue Nov 13, 2012 12:19 pm

:D class!

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Raffles
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby Raffles » Tue Nov 13, 2012 13:00 pm

san marco rolls is the most comfy saddle ive ever used.
2012 Cannondale CAAD 8 105

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Navrig
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby Navrig » Tue Nov 13, 2012 13:08 pm

So far (and I am nearly 50) I have yet to find a saddle I cannot sit on for decent distances. I just get on a new bike and ride. I've 3 road bikes and 2 MTBs all with different saddles.

If anyone wants a mould of my bum in order to have plastic surgery let me know and I'll arrange it.

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passout
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby passout » Tue Nov 13, 2012 14:40 pm

MichaelW wrote:I have an old white, leather covered saddle from Specialized that came with a used bike. It is way more comfortable than my San Marco Rolls or even Brooks B17.
I am 5'11, very thin with sitbones about 100mm apart and testicles that drop quite low with a pronounced ridge. I recomend this saddle to anyone with a similar set of testicles.


I cannot get that image out of my head, damn you!
'Happiness serves hardly any other purpose than to make unhappiness possible' Marcel Proust.

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topdude
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby topdude » Tue Nov 13, 2012 17:45 pm

In order to give better saddle advice would it be best for everyone to post photos of their buttocks and testicles ?
He is not the messiah, he is a very naughty boy !!

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ugo.santalucia
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby ugo.santalucia » Tue Nov 13, 2012 17:53 pm

When people will stop riding road bikes set up as mountain bikes with high stems and low seat post, all the saddle issues will disappear... If you carry 90 per cent of the weight on your bum, there is no such a thing as a good saddle, but if you ride a bit more like a proper racer, the weight gets distributed more evenly, and not only you will go faster, but you will also experience buTt relief

dosthecat
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby dosthecat » Mon Nov 19, 2012 12:58 pm

ugo.santalucia wrote:When people will stop riding road bikes set up as mountain bikes with high stems and low seat post, all the saddle issues will disappear... If you carry 90 per cent of the weight on your bum, there is no such a thing as a good saddle, but if you ride a bit more like a proper racer, the weight gets distributed more evenly, and not only you will go faster, but you will also experience buTt relief


.....and you end up with severe neck pain

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Cubic
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Re: Saddles - can we be more helpful?

Postby Cubic » Mon Nov 19, 2012 13:59 pm

What may help would be for those of us who have found a comfortable saddle to state what we have tried on the way to finding it. So, for example, I use a Fizik Aliante, which I like a lot. But before I tried it I used a Selle Italia Flite with cutaway, which cause much numbness, and a Fizik Arione, which was a bit better, but became very uncomfortable on long rides.
Then, if someone reads this and is currently using a Selle Italia Flite and finding it numbing, they could try an Aliante next, instead of just picking a saddle at random.


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