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Old 04-05-07, 09:26 AM   #1
bikerosity57
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Brooks converted to anatomic

I have a friend who bought a brand of saddle, the company of which originally modified Brooks saddles with an anatomic slot cut down the middle. They now manufacture their own. It works great. Probably the best leather saddle you could want. Anyway, I bought a Brooks B-17, and copied the slot myself, and MAN it really is a comfortable saddle! It allows your anatomy to move around as you pedal, and makes the leather a lot more soft and pliable. I have about two thousand miles on it now, and it is still good as new,and never required a break in period. It felt great from the first ride! I wouldn't hesitate to encourage others to try the same, however I imagine the owners of the anatomic saddle company would cringe if they read this! Even if this procedure should shorten the life of the saddle by a few years, it is well worth doing. I plan on buying another saddle and experimenting with another slot style.
Has anyone ever done this?
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Old 04-05-07, 09:39 AM   #2
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No, but now I might try it.
On a related topic, that Company (Selle Anatomica) also does some kind of lamination to the underside of the leather to make it "stronger, more water-resistant"...any idea what that is?
Appears that they cut the slot (your choice) AND add this lamination to your supplied Brooks for $50.
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Old 04-05-07, 10:23 AM   #3
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I'm glad it works for you. I don't have troubles with my Brooks saddles so I don't have the need or want to cut mine. I think they look kinda weird too.
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Old 04-05-07, 10:28 AM   #4
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No trouble here, either. But I did see a 17 at the Seattle Bike Expo that some guy sent back to Selle. He says it really works well.
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Old 04-05-07, 10:40 AM   #5
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I have pictures from as early as 1920 where pro racers have performed the same modification. Nothing new under the sun, as they say. And I'm considering butchering my Brooks Pro...
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Old 04-05-07, 04:08 PM   #6
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After almost 50k mi / 80k km, my Brooks Pro is essentially anatomic, no slot required.
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Old 04-05-07, 04:31 PM   #7
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Brooks to anatomic

They put some kind of leather, or artificial leather sheet glued to the underside. It is on my friends saddle, and keeps it from ripping I guess. I have had no problems with mine. They also sell a budget model without the layer.
Vis-a-vis the slot, I am older and although I rode for thirty years without the anatomic slot, I certainly like and appreciate it every single time I ride my bike today!
I believe the production Anatomica saddle is a great product, and I recommend one, or a home made one to everybody.
I always enjoyed making things like this myself, that's why I did so with this saddle.
I hope others will be encouraged to try it, you will not be disappointed.
Re: Mariner Fan >I don't have the need or want to cut mine. I think they look kinda weird too.<
Look weird? You can not see the slot while I am riding unless you are way too close! I couldn't give a turd less whether it looks weird or not, after a fifty mile ride my butt feels as good as when I start, and that is all I care about.
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Old 04-05-07, 06:02 PM   #8
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I just purchased the Selle Anatomica and have only been only to ride twice since I put it on. The first ride was 13 miles and the second 30 miles. The weather turned bad here in northern WI, but from what I have been able to tell so far, it is a great saddle. I have never rode a better saddle.
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Old 04-06-07, 04:41 AM   #9
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What? No pictures? You guys made me go hunting. Looks very interesting. What did you use to cut your Brooks?
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Old 04-06-07, 05:31 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikerosity57
They put some kind of leather, or artificial leather sheet glued to the underside. It is on my friends saddle, and keeps it from ripping I guess. I have had no problems with mine. They also sell a budget model without the layer.
Vis-a-vis the slot, I am older and although I rode for thirty years without the anatomic slot, I certainly like and appreciate it every single time I ride my bike today!
I believe the production Anatomica saddle is a great product, and I recommend one, or a home made one to everybody.
I always enjoyed making things like this myself, that's why I did so with this saddle.
I hope others will be encouraged to try it, you will not be disappointed.
Re: Mariner Fan >I don't have the need or want to cut mine. I think they look kinda weird too.<
Look weird? You can not see the slot while I am riding unless you are way too close! I couldn't give a turd less whether it looks weird or not, after a fifty mile ride my butt feels as good as when I start, and that is all I care about.
Your right there; if it works then who cares? I thought two things when i first saw them.

!. Yes, they look weird.
2. I'd probably break that saddle down right away with my weight. (Most important)

Both observastions could be in error but in most cases, first impressions will prevent you or me from giving a product a try.

Good reviews of the saddle like yours will allow us skeptics to open our eyes and look at the product again.
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Old 04-06-07, 07:19 AM   #11
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Brooks to anatomic

I used an exacto knife, and very carefully cut along lines I transfered to the saddle. It was reasonably easy. After cutting, I carefully sanded the edges. It works very well.
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Old 04-06-07, 10:25 AM   #12
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Ah, that's very tempting. IMO, the Anatomica saddles have too much cut out. I don't see the rationale behind carving it up all the way to the rivet. Somebody's going to have to take off their pants, ink their naughty bits, and then go for a ride to see where they touch the saddle.

I nominate Jessica Simson.
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Old 04-06-07, 06:33 PM   #13
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Seconded. But not Jessica Simpson. Maybe someone like Jenna Jameson- you KNOW her naughty bits are a bit more used to rigorous "riding".
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Old 04-06-07, 09:00 PM   #14
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Anyone got a template for the cut out?
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Old 04-06-07, 09:07 PM   #15
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Seconded. But not Jessica Simpson. Maybe someone like Jenna Jameson- you KNOW her naughty bits are a bit more used to rigorous "riding".
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Old 04-07-07, 06:14 PM   #16
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I took the plunge

I took the plunge and put this new B-17 under the (Xacto) knife. I'm happy with the results, now we'll see how it rides! Note to them who would do this: the saddle's tension tends to pull open the slot making it wider than when you lay it out and cut it. I chose to cut a shorter and narrower slot than I saw on the Selle Anatomica. I wound up with one that's shorter, but seems just as wide as theirs...not a problem, AFAIK. I also chose to "skive" the sharp edges that result when you cut the leather, this is just a leather term for chamfering, did it with the Xacto and then sanded lightly with 400 wetordry paper. Nice surprise: the dye that Brooks uses goes all the way into and thru the hide, just a little Proofide dressing on the edge and it should look "the business"...
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Old 04-07-07, 06:25 PM   #17
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I don't know. I tried a padded anatomical saddle once. Everything was going OK until I slid to the side of the seat while twisting around to look behind me. Man! That saddle came off as soon as I got home. Looking at that picture of the Brooks the damage may have been permanent and I'd probably be posting in a higher voice right now.
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Old 04-07-07, 07:16 PM   #18
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brooks to ana....

This is similar to my saddle except that I put the "tee" slot in the back of the saddle at the end of the slot as in the photo of the Selle Anatomica. I believe you'll like the saddle a lot!
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Old 04-08-07, 09:32 AM   #19
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Right, I checked out all 3 slot varieties they show on their website, and decided to try the "sportiest" option, but I also didn't want to extend it as far into the saddle nose as they do. I figured I can always cut more (old carpenter's adage) as well as a T-slot, if it seems close but needs just a little more to be perfect. I won't have any time to test ride it today (Easter) but I'll let the BF know what I think after a fair test.
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Old 04-08-07, 10:45 AM   #20
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carving up a brooks like that makes me fell poor. I would just get my nuts removed instead. At least if my insurance would cover it. Nothing but trouble anyways...
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Old 04-09-07, 06:42 AM   #21
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nuts, and prostate

With the brooks cut this way, you can keep yer nuts and your prostate. You can get a new Brooks B-17 for "around" $50-60, an danatomical saddle made by Selle Anatomica is like $110. It is more than worth it to cut a Brooks saddle if you wind up with something that: A, allows you to ride longer, and more comfortably, and: B, saves your prostate. I'm 50, and I can assure you riding a Brooks saddle, or any hard small saddle "can" cause prosatae problems, because that is what caused mine. Since the surgery on my saddle, I have had NO problems at all. Thats two, or three years with NO problems. It's a great thing.
However I can uderstand if someoneis reticent to butcher a new brooks. If you've reached that point in your life where you can afford to blow $50-60 on an experiment, it definately will be worth it.
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Old 04-09-07, 10:17 AM   #22
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Again I ask--- anyone got a template for these cut outs or just whack away on your own?
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Old 04-09-07, 10:35 AM   #23
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If I do it, I intend to make a much smaller cut than is shown on the An-Atomica. I don't see the sense in slicing the thing up from stem to stern. I'm only putting pressure on a fraction of the saddle, and the bits that get sore take up only a fraction of that space.

The pictures I see of the old time racers with carved-up saddles show relatively small cutouts -- most commonly about the size that would result from cutting out a strip from between the two farthest-apart holes on a B-17, and of approximately the same width as those holes.

As they say, it's easier to remove material than to put it back, so I'm going to start small and slowly increase, bearing in mind the parts that I'm actually sitting on.

HTH!
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Old 04-09-07, 11:19 AM   #24
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I made a drawing in Illustrator™, printed it out, cut it and traced around the paper with a Sharpie™. If you think you want to duplicate mine, drop me a PM, you'll need to be able to open an Illustrator CS file, Acrobat Reader should work.
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Old 03-01-08, 08:25 PM   #25
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I am very curious.

After this modification how did the Brooks age? Did it get better? Fall apart? I would love to know!

I wonder since the cross support the rivets had across the center to the nose were cut. It looks like this saddle will squish open in the middle and become unusable. It's been awhile since you tried this, could you update how your cut worked out?

Thanks

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