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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 08-10-06, 09:09 PM   #1
DC Clydesdale
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Clydesdale Saddle

I've just had it with the stock saddle on my LeMond Buenos Aires. I knew it was a bit hard and uncomfortable when I bought the bike, but after the last time I rode, it has to go. I'll spare you all the gory details, but it has to go.

I saw the Selle San Marco Azoto TriathGel saddle on a Tri bike at my LBS. It looked far more comfortable, and I've read a few good reviews online. It especially interests me since I spend a lot of time both sitting and cruising on group rides with friends, time down in the drops, and like to sit toward the front of the saddle and spin at times -- all things that would bring the gel-padded nose of the Azoto TriathGel into play.

So, I am asking for your honest experiences with that or other saddles, especially if you are a larger-than-normal cyclist. For the record, I am 6-0, 230 lbs and ride a 51cm LeMond Buenos Aires. (It's that small because I have short legs: 30-inch inseams.)
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Old 08-10-06, 09:17 PM   #2
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I can't believe you're 6ft tall and have a 30" inseam.

We're not talking about your pants size here, get your wife or whoever and measure it properly. Stand feet appart a foot or so, against a wall, wack something up between your legs and put a mark on the wall. Measure it. THAT's your inseam.

If you really do have a 30" inseam, you're a total freak and will never, ever fit on a stock bike. That's insane.
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Old 08-10-06, 09:18 PM   #3
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I'm over 230# as well. I've been using a WTB saddle on my roadie.
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Old 08-10-06, 09:22 PM   #4
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Good point about the inseam...but if he is riding a 51cm he probably is about right. And actually the LeMond geometry (with longer TTs) would be a good place to start. Most of my pants are a 30" inseam, but I measure out for a bike around 31.5-32". I ride a 56cm Trek with a standover of 31".
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Old 08-10-06, 09:28 PM   #5
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5'10" measured 29" inseam at my bike shop, and yes I am funny looking.
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Old 08-10-06, 09:34 PM   #6
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Any Brooks saddle.
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Old 08-11-06, 12:38 AM   #7
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I am a bit funny looking proportionally:
- buy tall mens' shirts but regular slacks
- tails of shirts still constantly come out
- my 5'2" mother still doesn't get it that I can drive her car without moving the seat back ... but I have to drive stooped over since I cannot sit up straight in her Saturn :-P
- speaking of Saturns, I've stuck my head through (yes, through) sunrooofs of at least two ...

dtrain, you are dead on target about the LeMond. I tried a Trek 5200 when looking to buy, but could not get comfortable on it. The fellow helping out at my LBS (Revolution Cycles in Georgetown, FYI) immediately suggested I test ride a LeMond due to the geometry. Even on the LeMond, I cannot really stretch out, but I can ride comfortably. Now, about that saddle ...

... and I was far from shocked to see a Brooks Disciple pop up in this thread. Those saddles inspire Macintosh-like devotion. There's probably something behind it.

Any other saddle-related comments? I am still looking for more input. :-)
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Old 08-11-06, 12:47 AM   #8
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Specilized BG Road saddles...
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Old 08-11-06, 04:26 AM   #9
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Brooks B67
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Old 08-11-06, 06:31 AM   #10
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6'1" - 220 lbs. I use and and have had success with following saddles:
Fizik Arione
Specialized Toupe
Selle Italia SLR Carbino Kit
Selle Itallia SLR XP
E3 Form Titanium
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Old 08-11-06, 07:25 AM   #11
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I have found that sit bone width really matters for my choice of saddle, hence I need a wider saddle, however that probably isn't dependent on my qualifications as a Clydesdale (6'3" 250). I didn't have luck with an Arionne as it was just to narrow, but I have been riding a Selle Italia Max Flite Gel, that is 18-20 mm wider than the Arione with no problems (Arione was 135 mm, Max Flite is 153 mm, if I remember correctly). I just added a Brooks B-17 to my commuter and must say that it has also been comfortable straightaway. I have previously used a Specialized BG saddle circa 1999, and that worked well for several years too.

I would recommend getting your sit bones measured, or finding the online directions to doing it yourself, (using a bag of flour or powdered sugar or something). That certainly helped me hone in on fit. There aren't many saddles of the plastic/carbon/racing design that are over 145 mm in width, so if you have 150 mm or wider sit bones your choices are limited. Good Luck!
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Old 08-11-06, 08:03 AM   #12
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6'0 225, and I second the coment about the Brooks. Yep, I'm a loyal convert and I use a B17 standard. Mine was comfortable out of the shoot, now it's perfect. Rode 150 miles~ last weeknd and no problems.
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Old 08-11-06, 08:32 AM   #13
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I'm 250#- had a selle flite at first, but found the fiziks arione to be much more comfortable for me- in the standard seated position, the selle was fine- but after 20 miles or so, it started getting pretty uncomfortable. With the arione, I can change positions a bit and that allows me to go on longer rides now.
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Old 08-11-06, 08:38 AM   #14
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5'11", 218, medium build. I have two B17s, one on a commuter and one on an XC mountain bike. Both were mostly comfortable out of the box (nowhere near the torture devices they are rumored to be). I have ~500 miles on the commuter saddle, which has had nothing but Proofide used on it. It's getting broken in nicely and is very comfortable for long rides. The saddle on the MTB has about 100 miles on it. I used baseball glove oil on that one and I'd say it is, if anything, slightly more comfortable than the other saddle.

Just to show I'm not a Brooks bigot and that there are other alternatives for big guys out there, my Merlin has an E3 Form gel saddle on it that has been very comfy for longer (40mi) rides. Looking at it you wouldn't think so given that it's very mimimalist, made of hard plastic, with thin gel padding on top but if you adjust it dead level with your sit bones right on the widest part of the saddle it really sort of disappears. It's sort of like sitting on a padded 2x4, not at all the hammock like sensation of the B17, but it works really well.

Last edited by Proximo; 08-11-06 at 08:44 AM.
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Old 08-11-06, 08:57 AM   #15
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The only thing that matters in a saddle is whether its width fits your sit bones (Ischial tuberosities).

Soliciting opinions from other cyclist is useless unless their sit bones are the same profile as yours.

Start as wide as you can find then try progressively narrower saddles to find the right fit.
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Old 08-11-06, 08:58 AM   #16
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I might as well chime in, being 6'2" and weighing in at 238 lbs. I too ride a Brooks, and to my great pleasure it's the most comfortable saddle I have owned. It's a Swift btw.
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Old 08-11-06, 09:06 AM   #17
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I'm uncomfortable with the phrase "...the saddle disappears". I understand what you are saying, but...
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Old 08-11-06, 09:23 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtrain
I'm uncomfortable with the phrase "...the saddle disappears".
As am I.
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Old 08-11-06, 09:35 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtrain
I'm uncomfortable with the phrase "...the saddle disappears". I understand what you are saying, but...
You guys must have some really big butts
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Old 08-11-06, 01:08 PM   #20
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Take it from a big Clydesdale. Get a Brooks B-17. You won't regret it.
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Old 08-11-06, 01:23 PM   #21
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Yep, I've tried many, many different saddles. The Brooks is the way to go.
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Old 08-20-06, 07:33 PM   #22
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Brooks indeed has a Macintosh-like following. Any Brooks devotee will tell you that while the saddle is extremely painful at first, when it breaks in after time, it fits like a glove. Eric Vanderearden used to race those saddles, and I belive he had one on his Paris-Roubaix-winning bike in 1985.

There are about ten thousand-hundred saddles out there, and while you are most likely going to want to stay away from something like a carbon-shell time trial saddle, something like a WTB saddle might be a good idea. Also, check out some of the different saddles from Fizik. Granted, I might be a scrawny 5-9" cyclocrosser, I've been relatively happy with my Fizik Poggio. San Marcos are good, but only if you're a little guy like me.

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Old 08-20-06, 08:03 PM   #23
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So for you big guys that bought a Brooks...did you buy a standard or narrow model?
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Old 08-20-06, 08:40 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtrain
I'm over 230# as well. I've been using a WTB saddle on my roadie.
Which WTB saddle? I test rode a Giant OCR3 and found the WTB LASER V COMP very nice. I just ordered a WTB WTB Speed V Comp from PB.com as the LASER V COMP must be a bike MFG only model or something...impossible to find.
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Old 08-20-06, 09:49 PM   #25
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well my experience with saddles are that they are personal.

Used a selle bassano boxster, fizik arione, selle san marco aspide triathgel and fizik aliante ti. Personally now i prefer the aliante but that is due to proper adjustment of the saddle.

My question to you is where do you hurt? At the seatbones area or right in between? If you hurt in between you are either sitting on the wrong part of the saddle most of the time, tend to slide forward as you pedal, or having some abrasion. I figured that out by trying to sit further back and i felt i was slipping forward with each pedal stroke. Using some chamois cream helped a bit. Tilting my saddle slightly upward helped it even more that and now it all feels good. If you tend to hurt at the seatbones area you could try a slightly cushier saddle or get shorts with better padding.

I have big customers and they ride on any saddle or stock saddles just fine given the adjustment is correct. There are the rare cases that need to ride with an extreme downward tilt of the saddle, or use a radical saddle like the selle smp. My opinion is try what you can with the stock one, and if that does not work go back to your local bike shop and see if they can put you on a trainer while you try different saddles. Best is go at a time when they are not busy, like weekdays.
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