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  1. #1
    Freewheel Medic pastorbobnlnh's Avatar
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    So Sad: The Fate of an Ideale Saddle

    As many on C&V know, I have a soft spot for collecting leather saddles. Brooks, Wrights, Felt, Middlemore, and Ideale are all in my collection. Many are mounted on bikes which are ridden. A few Brooks are limited edition models. Several saddles have been rescued from my town's "Stump Dump," which contains the scrap metal pile.


    This week, while poking in the pile, where many treasures have been found in the past, I slid a battered metal cabinet off a--- stem shifter, turkey wing, steel rimmed, equipped Shogun. The bike was still wedged under a few other pieces of scrap, and could not be retrieved, but moving the cabinet, revealed an old leather saddle!

    Looking a little closer I spotted the stamping in the rivets, and they read, "Ideale."




    But the condition was so sad! The top had developed a scaling like I had never seen. It was reptilian in appearance.


    To be continued....
    Bob
    Dreaming of Summertime in NH!

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  2. #2
    Too many bikes bikemore's Avatar
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    Ah, it will bring $50 on ebay. Actually I think there is plain (not an alloy, etc) frame up right now. And I do have a NOS saddle with no frame.

  3. #3
    Senior Member gaucho777's Avatar
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    (Edit: Never mind. I think I jumped the ***...)
    Last edited by gaucho777; 11-15-11 at 10:57 AM.
    -Randy

    '72 Cilo Pacer '73 Speedwell Ti '74 Nishiki Competition '74 Peugeot UE-8 '86 Look Bernard Hinault 753 '86 Look KG86 '89 Parkpre Team Road '90ish Parkpre Team MTB

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  4. #4
    Freewheel Medic pastorbobnlnh's Avatar
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    The skirt was splayed a little. The logo faded with time.


    There were even lichens growing on this poor, long forgotten treasure.




    While I didn't spot any tears, rips, or separating rivets from leather, I doubted this saddle could ever be used again.


    To be continued...
    Bob
    Dreaming of Summertime in NH!

    Visit my websites:
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  5. #5
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    I'm liking where this is going.

  6. #6
    Senior Member gaucho777's Avatar
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    NOS Ideale lichens should fetch at least $20.
    -Randy

    '72 Cilo Pacer '73 Speedwell Ti '74 Nishiki Competition '74 Peugeot UE-8 '86 Look Bernard Hinault 753 '86 Look KG86 '89 Parkpre Team Road '90ish Parkpre Team MTB

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  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    Can't wait for the outcome of this.
    My name is Steve and I don't have a bent fork anymore :)

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  8. #8
    You gonna eat that? Doohickie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pastorbobnlnh View Post
    To be continued...
    I stop for people / whose right of way I honor / but not for no one.



    Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."

  9. #9
    7-speed doomsday prepper ThermionicScott's Avatar
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    Well, you could always lace it up and ride gingerly.
    Last edited by ThermionicScott; 11-15-11 at 12:05 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
    There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
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  10. #10
    Freewheel Medic pastorbobnlnh's Avatar
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    But as I readied my adjustable wrench, prayed the nuts were not too rusted for an easy removal, and peered to the undercarriage of this neglected piece of French craftsmanship, my heart sank and raced at the same time!


    I was about to retrieve what appears to be an Ideale Model 90, with full aluminum rails and canticle!


    I was now fully heartbroken! I could not tell if the water droplets falling on this saddle were my tears or rain drops! Here was a true C&V French treasure, that had been abused, not by too much riding, but obviously from improper storage!


    Of course, without being able to read the logo on the skirt, identification of which Ideale model I now possessed was difficult. Within a few minutes of searching ebay, I found this listing for a NOS Ideale Mod. 90 with a BIN of $450.

    The stamping in the ebay NOS rail was the same as the one I retrieved from the Stump Dump.


    A search on Velo Base produced an identical frame and rail stamping, with the only difference the number "9 - 0" instead of the "9 - 9" which was in my rescue and the ebay sample.

    Now the question: Is there any hope of restoring this French treasure, or should I just lock it away in cold storage?
    Bob
    Dreaming of Summertime in NH!

    Visit my websites:
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  11. #11
    Senior Member ColonelJLloyd's Avatar
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    Sell it in its current state or remove the leather and sell the rails only. Someone in Japan will give you a bunch of money for it.
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  12. #12
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    Can't say, really. How do you people feel about sandpapering the surface to see how deep is the damage? There just might be sound leather somewhere not too deep. Sure, would never be the same as a reasonably well kept Selle Ideale, but they were sturdy things. As far as I can judge, the leather used for them was actually of better quality than that used for Brooks saddles.

    If it looks like it can be kinda saved, the next thing to do is to "block" it. like in http://home.earthlink.net/~mike.sherman/brooks.html and there are other links out there for that treatment, just can't find them at the moment.

  13. #13
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    Man, I was really hoping you would end the thread off with a post showing how you somehow magically revived the leather. Oh well, cool find either way.

  14. #14
    Senior Member jr59's Avatar
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    Somebody will buy it! My time looking at ebay has taught me that much!
    Gravity hates us all, but it hates me more than thin people!

  15. #15
    Senior Member gaucho777's Avatar
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    IF you are unsuccessful in restoring the leather, please do not through away the back plate. If you don't want to keep it for yourself, or if you end up selling the rails only, I have a special place for the back plate on my Ideale 90 Speciale Competition (which is missing its back plate).

    Last edited by gaucho777; 11-15-11 at 01:22 PM. Reason: corrected typo: it's -> its
    -Randy

    '72 Cilo Pacer '73 Speedwell Ti '74 Nishiki Competition '74 Peugeot UE-8 '86 Look Bernard Hinault 753 '86 Look KG86 '89 Parkpre Team Road '90ish Parkpre Team MTB

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  16. #16
    Freewheel Medic pastorbobnlnh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ColonelJLloyd View Post
    Sell it in its current state or remove the leather and sell the rails only. Someone in Japan will give you a bunch of money for it.
    I'm watching a couple of torn leather alloy railed Ideales on ebay at this moment. It will be interesting to see what they fetch.

    This would be one of my "grail" saddles, if it were in better condition. I can't decide yet whether to keep or sell.

    Quote Originally Posted by hagen2456 View Post
    Can't say, really. How do you people feel about sandpapering the surface to see how deep is the damage? There just might be sound leather somewhere not too deep. Sure, would never be the same as a reasonably well kept Selle Ideale, but they were sturdy things. As far as I can judge, the leather used for them was actually of better quality than that used for Brooks saddles.

    If it looks like it can be kinda saved, the next thing to do is to "block" it. like in http://home.earthlink.net/~mike.sherman/brooks.html and there are other links out there for that treatment, just can't find them at the moment.
    I might be tempted to give this a try. At the moment I'd say it will need at least .5mm in most places to smooth it out. The crinkled surface is rather deep in places.

    Quote Originally Posted by dphi View Post
    Man, I was really hoping you would end the thread off with a post showing how you somehow magically revived the leather. Oh well, cool find either way.
    I've only had the saddle in my possession for 24 hours! Since I left the camera here at the church I could not post about it last evening.

    Quote Originally Posted by jr59 View Post
    Somebody will buy it! My time looking at ebay has taught me that much!
    I've never sold anything on ebay, just bought.

    Quote Originally Posted by gaucho777 View Post
    IF you are unsuccessful in restoring the leather, please do not through away the back plate. If you don't want to keep it for yourself, or if you end up selling the rails only, I have a special place for the back plate on my Ideale 90 Speciale Competition (which is missing it's back plate).

    Is your Model 90 a steel or aluminum railed model? The back plate on this appears to be aluminum.

    Don't worry, this saddle will never be thrown away (a second time).
    Bob
    Dreaming of Summertime in NH!

    Visit my websites:
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  17. #17
    Senior Member gaucho777's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pastorbobnlnh View Post
    Is your Model 90 a steel or aluminum railed model?
    I believe it has aluminum rails, but I'll have to confirm when I am at home tonight. (By the way, did I mention that I went to mass on Sunday and have fulfilled all the sacraments except Holy Orders and Anointing the Sick? )
    -Randy

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  18. #18
    slow as I ever was Ex Pres's Avatar
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    Soak it in a bucket of water. I'm serious. Soak it.
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  19. #19
    Can'tre Member 3alarmer's Avatar
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    A decent leather guy (there's one here in Sacramento who does this)
    can cut, chamfer, form, stretch, and finish this pretty nicely with
    a new piece of leather. The hardest part at this time seems to be
    getting decent quality leather.

    Just a thought.

    saddle details 008.jpgsaddle details 006.jpgsaddle details 003.jpgsaddle details 002.jpgsaddle details 007.jpg

    Because I have one of these, and am completely clueless
    as to why it would be a "grail" saddle (it is verrry comfy)
    perhaps you might trade a couple of why's for my photos?

    I really like the bike it's on, in spite of the sad state of its
    paint. I can't recall, because it's been at least 25 years
    since I put this together, but it's probable I scrounged
    the saddle from the same heap of junked bikes in Merced
    that provided the frame. At any rate, I've always enjoyed
    riding it, and knowing the saddle is the envy of at least
    one person makes it all the more sweet.......
    Quote Originally Posted by Terrierman View Post
    No wonder everybody hates you.

  20. #20
    Freewheel Medic pastorbobnlnh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaucho777 View Post
    I believe it has aluminum rails, but I'll have to confirm when I am at home tonight. (By the way, did I mention that I went to mass on Sunday and have fulfilled all the sacraments except Holy Orders and Anointing the Sick? )
    I'll not comment since I'm a Presbyterian pastor and we only practice two or the seven Roman Catholic sacraments.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ex Pres View Post
    Soak it in a bucket of water. I'm serious. Soak it.
    What will this do for the cracking and the lichens growing on the surface?

    Quote Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
    A decent leather guy (there's one here in Sacramento who does this)
    can cut, chamfer, form, stretch, and finish this pretty nicely with
    a new piece of leather. The hardest part at this time seems to be
    getting decent quality leather.

    Just a thought.

    Because I have one of these, and am completely clueless
    as to why it would be a "grail" saddle (it is verrry comfy)
    perhaps you might trade a couple of why's for my photos?

    I really like the bike it's on, in spite of the sad state of its
    paint. I can't recall, because it's been at least 25 years
    since I put this together, but it's probable I scrounged
    the saddle from the same heap of junked bikes in Merced
    that provided the frame. At any rate, I've always enjoyed
    riding it, and knowing the saddle is the envy of at least
    one person makes it all the more sweet.......
    I might go the route of a recovering. I actually remember seeing on ebay (in the past year+), the leather tops for these frames.

    3 alarmer, your saddle, while very nice, is not the same. Your Lycett has a traditional steel frame with round rails. This Ideale has aluminum flat rails, frame, and post clamp, with some steel (rusting) hardware bits.





    These types of Ideale saddles go for significantly more on ebay. Currently there are several with asking prices all over $400.
    Bob
    Dreaming of Summertime in NH!

    Visit my websites:
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  21. #21
    Senior Member gaucho777's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pastorbobnlnh View Post
    Is your Model 90 a steel or aluminum railed model?
    Just confirmed that mine has steel rails (and, btw, they are the more common oval-shaped rails, not flat rails like yours).
    -Randy

    '72 Cilo Pacer '73 Speedwell Ti '74 Nishiki Competition '74 Peugeot UE-8 '86 Look Bernard Hinault 753 '86 Look KG86 '89 Parkpre Team Road '90ish Parkpre Team MTB

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  22. #22
    Can'tre Member 3alarmer's Avatar
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    Once again, I am the envy of no one................
    Quote Originally Posted by Terrierman View Post
    No wonder everybody hates you.

  23. #23
    Freewheel Medic pastorbobnlnh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
    Once again, I am the envy of no one................
    I wouldn't say that! I don't have a Lycett in my saddle collection and your saddle is very nice looking!

    Bob
    Dreaming of Summertime in NH!

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  24. #24
    Senior Member tanguy frame's Avatar
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    I may have the Ideale saddle in my garage - need to check. I had no idea it could fetch $400 and more on ebay. I bought mine new in 1978 and rode it several years. it has the aluminum rails and it's in decent shape - I need to see if I can find it in my junk pile.
    -Tanguy Frame

  25. #25
    Freewheel Medic pastorbobnlnh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tanguy frame View Post
    I may have the Ideale saddle in my garage - need to check. I had no idea it could fetch $400 and more on ebay. I bought mine new in 1978 and rode it several years. it has the aluminum rails and it's in decent shape - I need to see if I can find it in my junk pile.
    I hope it doesn't have lichens growing on it!
    Bob
    Dreaming of Summertime in NH!

    Visit my websites:
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