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  1. #1
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    Breaking in a B17

    While I'm waiting for the new bike to be finished, I decided to go ahead and begin breaking in the new saddle that she'll carry -- a Brooks B 17.

    When it arrived, I showed it to my bride. She couldn't resist touching it and when she did, all she could say was "You're kidding, right? You're actually going to sit on this?"
    I'd told her about the several riders on double centuries who swear by them, and she just smiled.

    I mounted it on the MTB last night, adjusted it to what looked like the right angle, and this morning I went for the first ride on it. All I can say is, wow!

    True, it's pretty slick and I need to tip the nose up a tad so that I don't keep sliding forward (my triceps are almost as tired as my quads). I expected to have a sore butt during the break-in period, but it didn't happen.

    I put in a solid (for me) 28 miles and my butt doesn't even know it went for a ride!

    Don't get me wrong -- it's not 'cushy'. It's like sitting on... a saddle!
    But it gave me such great support that I didn't have any 'hot spots'.

    I'll make the adjustments and try it out again after the rain.

  2. #2
    Come here often? <wink> exile's Avatar
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    Brooks are usually a good choice. I usually get the "you ride on that" when people touch my saddle (Brooks Flyer pre-aged). I guess they are so used to the "super luxury deluxe soft foam/air/gel" saddles that compress into a plastic shell that they don't know any better. Also I think the $$$ throws them off as well.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member neilfein's Avatar
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    The highest compliment I can pay my B17 is that I never think about my saddle. It's just...there. I haven't had saddle-butt since I got a Brooks.
    Tour Journals, Blog, ride pix

    I'm in the celtic folk fusion band Baroque and Hungry. "Mended", our new full-length studio album, is now available for download.

  4. #4
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    I won't say they're perfect for everyone, but... when it's right, it's right.

    I'm in process on my R-12 series (a 200k per month, for 12 consecutive months), and over the summer I rode 4x 200k, 2x centuries, a 300k and a 400k, all on a B-17 Imperial saddle. Next year, I'm signed up for more than 8 200k distances, 4x 300k, 2x 400k, and a 600k. They will all be done on my B-17 Imperial.
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
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  5. #5
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    My Brooks flyer was comfy from day one. I wish they were less expensive, I'd get one for my other bike too. I guess you get what you pay for.

  6. #6
    Buh'wah?! Amani576's Avatar
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    And the best feeling, or lack there of, is when you finally get saddle height, angle, and rail position set. Then it's just incredible. I probably made 4 or 5 adjustments before I got mine (B-17 Champion Special) in the right place. It hasn't moved since.
    I ride mine every day in and from work. No chamois, nothing. I don't need one. It fits me that well.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by neilfein View Post
    The highest compliment I can pay my B17 is that I never think about my saddle. It's just...there. I haven't had saddle-butt since I got a Brooks.
    Same for me. Somebody gave me my first Brooks years ago (it cost $27, which gives you an idea). I'd heard the break-in stories, but mine was pretty comfortable from the start and got better in a few hundred miles. I have four of them now, on all my bikes except the beater/rain bike that lives at work.
    Grant Petersen at Rivendell, who's right about everything else, has some recommendations for care: Don't ride them if they get wet (I carry a plastic bag to pull over mine if it rains, but I rarely use it here in the desert). Put on a light coat of Proofhide (Brooks' proprietary gunk) no more than once or twice a year--don't goop it on every time you lube the chain. Leave the tension bolt alone unless you have a good, solid reason for messing with it, and then only mess with it a little. Setup seems to be critical--for me, raising or lowering the nose of the saddle as little as a couple of millimeters makes a difference. I don't even try to eyeball it anymore--I use a ruler to measure from the top tube to the nose of the saddle, and make changes of 1/8 inch or so at a time. Nose very slightly up seems to work best for me, but I have friends who prefer them with the nose down a quarter-inch or so below horizontal. You may find yourself scooching forward on the saddle when it's new, but that goes away as the glossy finish wears off.
    And let's lay to rest a Brooks myth, that used motor oil speeds break-in. The truth behind that rumor, which has been around for years, supposedly is that somebody asked legendary distance cyclist Pete Penseyres what to smear on a Brooks, and he said something like, "Proofhide, saddle soap; I've used motor oil..." "Used motor oil" somehow stuck in our mythology. Don't use it.

  8. #8
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    The motor oil thing isn't a myth. Lon Haldeman actually did use 30 weight motor oil to soften his saddles.
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
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  9. #9
    Council of the Elders billydonn's Avatar
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    My B-17 was good, but not great, from the beginning. I don't think you really get the measure of any saddle until you are doing pretty long rides though. A good "break-in accelerant" is baseball glove oil used in moderation... if and when you feel the need. The variable nature of organic leather probably makes some of the Brooks slower to relax than others. The Imperial narrow turned out to be the best Brooks for me though I also do just fine on some of the more modern Specialized saddles.

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  10. #10
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billydonn View Post
    A good "break-in accelerant" is baseball glove oil used in moderation... if and when you feel the need.
    Baseball glove oil == Neatsfoot oil. Neatsfoot oil has a few issues when dealing with bike saddles. If you don't keep reapplying it, the oils suffer oxidative breakdown and can cause brittling of the leather; so once you start using it, you need to continue with it. Unless you buy your Neatsfoot Oil at a quality tack & stable joint, it's likely that what you're getting is actually Neatsfoot Compound, not 100% Pure Neatsfoot Oil.
    100% NF Oil is fat reduced from the shin/foot of cattle and will not damage the leather.
    Neatsfoot Compound is blended with rapeseed, soya, or mineral oils. Mineral oil being a petroleum distillate is damaging to the fiber structure of the leather and will prematurely ruin the saddle.

    Proofide isn't just a spiffy money-maker marketing gimmick. It's actually what's best for your leather saddle. The big "secret" is that you don't have to spend $14.00 on a miniature tin of Proofide to get the same effects... SnoSeal is available more widely and costs a heck of a lot less. Some leather furniture galleries and any good farm & fleet or tack & stable will carry Obenauf's LP, which is another cheap substitute for Proofide.
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
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  11. #11
    Senior Member rockdog's Avatar
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    I love my B-17, actually liked it even better out of the box than I did after it started getting broken in. Getting the saddle adjusted just right definitely seems to be the trick with a Brooks, probably with any leather saddle, you wind up tipping the nose up higher than your used to for comfort and to keep from sliding forward. On my old gel saddle I was always squirming around trying to get comfortable, on the leather saddle I just settle in, don't even think about it most of the time.
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  12. #12
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    Listin, there are thousands of cyclists riding around on Brooks saddles. Many people really love them. I mean really love them, in that Rivendell cult, BOBish kind of way where everything on their bike has to be JUST SO. The fact is if a Brooks saddle looked more modern or was made in Taiwan no one would really ride them.

    I've got two excellent condition Brooks B17 saddles if someone is foolish enough to want to ride this torture devices. One black and one brown. I'll sell 'em reasonably.

    The truth is that EVERY male cyclist is going to develop an enlarged prostate. No one wants to talk about that, but those are the facts. Contrary to a very loud and vocal group of Brooks saddle enthusiasts these saddles are not MORE comfortable. In fact they are decidedly less comfortable than many racing saddles. They exert considerable force on the perineal area, exactly where you don't want pressure.

    For a Clydesdale these saddles are definitely not good.

    Clydesdales should definitely be checking out the Selle Italia Prolink Gel Flow. For fat ponies and true Clydesdales its a great saddle, with the all important ergonomic cut out to relieve pressure on the perineal area. Its wider at about 144mm than most racing saddles. At Zinn custom bikes almost every custom Project Big bike goes out with a Prolink Gel Flow. Many tandem captains love the saddle as well (you're in the saddle pedaling considerably longer on a tandem than a single as its difficult to coordinate standing up, let alone pedaling while standing up).

    I'd strongly encourage those who need to validate themselves with material purchases to forego those things that are heavy like boat anchors, and aren't nearly as comfortable, or medically prudent.

    A Brooks saddle is a wrong choice for male cyclists in my book...however your proctologist might prefer that you ride one.

    Sadly there is a whole undercurrent in cycling right now where people want to spend oodles of money on components and bikes that just aren't good kit. Its amazing how many people will spend two thousand bucks on a new Rivendell, when any 80s craigslist find for less than $200 is going to be a superior lugged steel Japanese frame. You just can't compare with the quality and craftsmanship of Japanese cycling components before the yen was revalued. Even Grant Peterson of Rivendell will tell you that. However, a $50 or a $125 Craigslist find (Nishiki, Panasonic, Miyata, etc.) doesn't have the snob appeal of a new Rivendell even if they are comparable frames. The two grand of a Rivendell will get you nice fancy new paint. Then again a couple of hundred bucks spent at Velocolour gets you fancy schmancy paint and a custom head badge too, so go figure...

    The thing is the Riv crowd, and the BOBish cult all want bikes that "look" a certain way. They are kind of like the poseur Jeep crowd that wants big tires and lift kits that have a certain rugged look, but will never go offroading in their lives. The truth is riding a bike is a wonderful feeling and nothing, NOTHING, is more enjoyable than riding a lightweight fast bike.

    By the time you load up those flexy inefficient steel frames with boat anchor Brooks saddles, and other formulaic components for the BOBish build you've got a bike that heavy, doesn't accelerate fast, is a dog on climbs, and has an inefficient flexy steel frame.

    However it does look pretty in photos with all that matching leather and 'old school' kit. The Brooks saddle is certainly eye candy, but you don't look at a saddle you sit on it. For those that actually want to RIDE their bikes, pass on the Brooks.

    Anyone foolish enough to actually want to ride the things PM me and I'll sell you Brooks B17 saddles for a fair price all day long.

    My advice, ride YOUR bike, don't build up a formulaic fixie build the same as every other hipster, and don't join the BOBish cult where you have to check your ability to think critically at the door. Riding a bike is a joy, and there is nothing like riding a lightweight, efficient stiff bike. Carbon bikes can provide pedaling efficiency while being comfortably compliant, so can titanium bikes, steel can't. Its comfortable because its a dog.

    Even big fat riders can enjoy riding a fast lightweight bike. Save the Brooks saddles and the other pretty look at kit for the internet photo galleries. You'll get more enjoyment riding a bike you LOVE to ride, than you will riding a bike you love to LOOK at.

  13. #13
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbke View Post
    The truth is that EVERY male cyclist is going to develop an enlarged prostate. No one wants to talk about that, but those are the facts. Contrary to a very loud and vocal group of Brooks saddle enthusiasts these saddles are not MORE comfortable. In fact they are decidedly less comfortable than many racing saddles. They exert considerable force on the perineal area, exactly where you don't want pressure.
    Care to point out the medical journal you took that stat from, or is this another citation from the "mtnbke journal of absolute truths I pulled from my backside"?

    If Brooks saddles were horrible for everyone, then why do so many randonneurs use them for rides in excess of 75 hours? I mean, who'd want a comfortable saddle on a 750 mile ride with 35,000' of climbing? We're all just in it for the torture, so we cherry-pick the least comfortable equipment available because it looks pretty. I'm not saying they're the end all solution for everybody; but many of us really are comfortable on them. I did a 400k over the summer and used my B-17 Imperial saddle; never had any problems. So comfy, I even rode to work 2 days later.
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbke View Post
    Listin, there are thousands of cyclists riding around on Brooks saddles. Many people really love them. I mean really love them, in that Rivendell cult, BOBish kind of way where everything on their bike has to be JUST SO. .........

    I'd strongly encourage those who need to validate themselves with material purchases to forego those things that are heavy like boat anchors, and aren't nearly as comfortable, or medically prudent.

    A Brooks saddle is a wrong choice for male cyclists in my book...however your proctologist might prefer that you ride one.

    Sadly there is a whole undercurrent in cycling right now where people want to spend oodles of money on components and bikes that just aren't good kit. Its amazing how many people will spend two thousand bucks on a new Rivendell, when any 80s craigslist find for less than $200 is going to be a superior lugged steel Japanese frame. ........

    By the time you load up those flexy inefficient steel frames with boat anchor Brooks saddles, and other formulaic components for the BOBish build you've got a bike that heavy, doesn't accelerate fast, is a dog on climbs, and has an inefficient flexy steel frame.

    However it does look pretty in photos with all that matching leather and 'old school' kit. The Brooks saddle is certainly eye candy, but you don't look at a saddle you sit on it. For those that actually want to RIDE their bikes, pass on the Brooks.

    Anyone foolish enough to actually want to ride the things PM me and I'll sell you Brooks B17 saddles for a fair price all day long.

    My advice, ride YOUR bike........
    I have several comments for the "x-purts" on bicycling....

    I wanted to bicycle from Cairns to Darwin, Australia across the dirt roads, etc. In 2005 I found a Canadian to build my bicycle. I got 2 PW 48 spoke hubs and other parts on e-bay and Arvon Stacey (Tolfield, Alberta) built me an incredibly strong expedition bike that weighed 40 pounds unloaded. 40 pounds empty!!

    When in the outback I had several mishaps, and the worst thing was that my lower idler pulley fell off the RD and went into the rear wheel. That was the end of that RD, but the wheel was basically OK. A 10 (??) hr hitch-hike to the next LBS resulted in a new RD, a replacement of a couple of broken and bent spokes and a continuation of that aspect of the trip - in a backward direction. Later.. when I hit bull dust the front wheel went to almost 90 degrees to the direction of travel and it was FINE. 48 spokes kept it straight and true.

    Oh, did I mention how cool my bumb felt when bicycling and sweating while I sat on the leather/breathable B17???

    Do what you want in terms of a bicycle and it's equipment. There is no utopia for us - just live with it and be happy bicycling and getting your body stronger ;-)

  15. #15
    Mad bike riding scientist cyccommute's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    Proofide isn't just a spiffy money-maker marketing gimmick. It's actually what's best for your leather saddle. The big "secret" is that you don't have to spend $14.00 on a miniature tin of Proofide to get the same effects... SnoSeal is available more widely and costs a heck of a lot less. Some leather furniture galleries and any good farm & fleet or tack & stable will carry Obenauf's LP, which is another cheap substitute for Proofide.
    The bigger secret about Proofide is that the $12 (25g) or $18 (40g) for a tin of it will last you for roughly 100 years and 140 years, respectively Honestly, the most I've used is in the initial treatment of the saddle (sealing underneath uses a lot). Even in a dry climate like Colorado, the saddles don't need more than yearly application.
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  16. #16
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
    The bigger secret about Proofide is that the $12 (25g) or $18 (40g) for a tin of it will last you for roughly 100 years and 140 years, respectively Honestly, the most I've used is in the initial treatment of the saddle (sealing underneath uses a lot). Even in a dry climate like Colorado, the saddles don't need more than yearly application.
    Truthfully, I only know of its expense from what other people have mentioned. I have 2 tins of Proofide: 1 came with a maintenance kit, so I didn't know an individual price on it, and the other was included with my B-17 Imperial during the pre-market testing, so it was free.
    You're right about them lasting forever, though. I have 3 Brooks saddles and still haven't gone through 1 entire 25g tin of the stuff in 3 years.
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
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  17. #17
    your nightmare gal chipcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
    The bigger secret about Proofide is that the $12 (25g) or $18 (40g) for a tin of it will last you for roughly 100 years and 140 years, respectively Honestly, the most I've used is in the initial treatment of the saddle (sealing underneath uses a lot). Even in a dry climate like Colorado, the saddles don't need more than yearly application.
    Yep.

    Also, the only break-in aids one needs for a B17 is miles and butt sweat.
    'Softening' them up with oils and hammers and such only makes the day when they need re-tensioning or lacing come faster.
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  18. #18
    your nightmare gal chipcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbke View Post
    Listin, there are thousands of cyclists riding around on Brooks saddles. Many people really love them. I mean really love them, in that Rivendell cult, BOBish kind of way where everything on their bike has to be JUST SO. The fact is if a Brooks saddle looked more modern or was made in Taiwan no one would really ride them.

    I've got two excellent condition Brooks B17 saddles if someone is foolish enough to want to ride this torture devices. One black and one brown. I'll sell 'em reasonably.

    The truth is that EVERY male cyclist is going to develop an enlarged prostate. No one wants to talk about that, but those are the facts. Contrary to a very loud and vocal group of Brooks saddle enthusiasts these saddles are not MORE comfortable. In fact they are decidedly less comfortable than many racing saddles. They exert considerable force on the perineal area, exactly where you don't want pressure.

    For a Clydesdale these saddles are definitely not good.

    Clydesdales should definitely be checking out the Selle Italia Prolink Gel Flow. For fat ponies and true Clydesdales its a great saddle, with the all important ergonomic cut out to relieve pressure on the perineal area. Its wider at about 144mm than most racing saddles. At Zinn custom bikes almost every custom Project Big bike goes out with a Prolink Gel Flow. Many tandem captains love the saddle as well (you're in the saddle pedaling considerably longer on a tandem than a single as its difficult to coordinate standing up, let alone pedaling while standing up).

    I'd strongly encourage those who need to validate themselves with material purchases to forego those things that are heavy like boat anchors, and aren't nearly as comfortable, or medically prudent.

    A Brooks saddle is a wrong choice for male cyclists in my book...however your proctologist might prefer that you ride one.

    Sadly there is a whole undercurrent in cycling right now where people want to spend oodles of money on components and bikes that just aren't good kit. Its amazing how many people will spend two thousand bucks on a new Rivendell, when any 80s craigslist find for less than $200 is going to be a superior lugged steel Japanese frame. You just can't compare with the quality and craftsmanship of Japanese cycling components before the yen was revalued. Even Grant Peterson of Rivendell will tell you that. However, a $50 or a $125 Craigslist find (Nishiki, Panasonic, Miyata, etc.) doesn't have the snob appeal of a new Rivendell even if they are comparable frames. The two grand of a Rivendell will get you nice fancy new paint. Then again a couple of hundred bucks spent at Velocolour gets you fancy schmancy paint and a custom head badge too, so go figure...

    The thing is the Riv crowd, and the BOBish cult all want bikes that "look" a certain way. They are kind of like the poseur Jeep crowd that wants big tires and lift kits that have a certain rugged look, but will never go offroading in their lives. The truth is riding a bike is a wonderful feeling and nothing, NOTHING, is more enjoyable than riding a lightweight fast bike.

    By the time you load up those flexy inefficient steel frames with boat anchor Brooks saddles, and other formulaic components for the BOBish build you've got a bike that heavy, doesn't accelerate fast, is a dog on climbs, and has an inefficient flexy steel frame.

    However it does look pretty in photos with all that matching leather and 'old school' kit. The Brooks saddle is certainly eye candy, but you don't look at a saddle you sit on it. For those that actually want to RIDE their bikes, pass on the Brooks.

    Anyone foolish enough to actually want to ride the things PM me and I'll sell you Brooks B17 saddles for a fair price all day long.

    My advice, ride YOUR bike, don't build up a formulaic fixie build the same as every other hipster, and don't join the BOBish cult where you have to check your ability to think critically at the door. Riding a bike is a joy, and there is nothing like riding a lightweight, efficient stiff bike. Carbon bikes can provide pedaling efficiency while being comfortably compliant, so can titanium bikes, steel can't. Its comfortable because its a dog.

    Even big fat riders can enjoy riding a fast lightweight bike. Save the Brooks saddles and the other pretty look at kit for the internet photo galleries. You'll get more enjoyment riding a bike you LOVE to ride, than you will riding a bike you love to LOOK at.
    This post is so full of FUD and horsepucky that I'd have to put on hip boots to even begin to respond.
    It's gotta be a troll attempt, no actual cyclist with any experience could be this clueless.
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  19. #19
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    Oh, my. I guess that I better re-think my saddle. Being 57 years old, I'm sure my prostate is a ticking bomb and Brook will be the fuse that ignites it! Darn, I wish it wasn't so comfortable, and cheaper than most saddles out there. Why, oh why, did those double-century riders mislead me?

    And I guess I'd better call Lennard Zinn tomorrow and tell him to cancel my custom steel bike -- the one that I ordered to replace my previous Zinn steel bike which was destroyed when I was rear-ended as a stop sign. Oh, wait. I think it's almost finished. Too late.
    To think, after decades on steel bikes I was so ignorant. All these years I thought I was having fun!

    But seriously, folks... I'm not offering advice here. Just my experience -- subjective as it is.
    My subjective experience is that the B17, when properly adjusted, provides firm but comfortable support for my 'sit bones' -- with less pressure on my perineum than either of my current (now former) saddles.
    But that's just me.


    Quote Originally Posted by mtnbke View Post
    Listin, there are thousands of cyclists riding around on Brooks saddles. Many people really love them. I mean really love them, in that Rivendell cult, BOBish kind of way where everything on their bike has to be JUST SO. The fact is if a Brooks saddle looked more modern or was made in Taiwan no one would really ride them.

    I've got two excellent condition Brooks B17 saddles if someone is foolish enough to want to ride this torture devices. One black and one brown. I'll sell 'em reasonably.

    The truth is that EVERY male cyclist is going to develop an enlarged prostate. No one wants to talk about that, but those are the facts. Contrary to a very loud and vocal group of Brooks saddle enthusiasts these saddles are not MORE comfortable. In fact they are decidedly less comfortable than many racing saddles. They exert considerable force on the perineal area, exactly where you don't want pressure.

    For a Clydesdale these saddles are definitely not good.

    Clydesdales should definitely be checking out the Selle Italia Prolink Gel Flow. For fat ponies and true Clydesdales its a great saddle, with the all important ergonomic cut out to relieve pressure on the perineal area. Its wider at about 144mm than most racing saddles. At Zinn custom bikes almost every custom Project Big bike goes out with a Prolink Gel Flow. Many tandem captains love the saddle as well (you're in the saddle pedaling considerably longer on a tandem than a single as its difficult to coordinate standing up, let alone pedaling while standing up).

    I'd strongly encourage those who need to validate themselves with material purchases to forego those things that are heavy like boat anchors, and aren't nearly as comfortable, or medically prudent.

    A Brooks saddle is a wrong choice for male cyclists in my book...however your proctologist might prefer that you ride one.

    Sadly there is a whole undercurrent in cycling right now where people want to spend oodles of money on components and bikes that just aren't good kit. Its amazing how many people will spend two thousand bucks on a new Rivendell, when any 80s craigslist find for less than $200 is going to be a superior lugged steel Japanese frame. You just can't compare with the quality and craftsmanship of Japanese cycling components before the yen was revalued. Even Grant Peterson of Rivendell will tell you that. However, a $50 or a $125 Craigslist find (Nishiki, Panasonic, Miyata, etc.) doesn't have the snob appeal of a new Rivendell even if they are comparable frames. The two grand of a Rivendell will get you nice fancy new paint. Then again a couple of hundred bucks spent at Velocolour gets you fancy schmancy paint and a custom head badge too, so go figure...

    The thing is the Riv crowd, and the BOBish cult all want bikes that "look" a certain way. They are kind of like the poseur Jeep crowd that wants big tires and lift kits that have a certain rugged look, but will never go offroading in their lives. The truth is riding a bike is a wonderful feeling and nothing, NOTHING, is more enjoyable than riding a lightweight fast bike.

    By the time you load up those flexy inefficient steel frames with boat anchor Brooks saddles, and other formulaic components for the BOBish build you've got a bike that heavy, doesn't accelerate fast, is a dog on climbs, and has an inefficient flexy steel frame.

    However it does look pretty in photos with all that matching leather and 'old school' kit. The Brooks saddle is certainly eye candy, but you don't look at a saddle you sit on it. For those that actually want to RIDE their bikes, pass on the Brooks.

    Anyone foolish enough to actually want to ride the things PM me and I'll sell you Brooks B17 saddles for a fair price all day long.

    My advice, ride YOUR bike, don't build up a formulaic fixie build the same as every other hipster, and don't join the BOBish cult where you have to check your ability to think critically at the door. Riding a bike is a joy, and there is nothing like riding a lightweight, efficient stiff bike. Carbon bikes can provide pedaling efficiency while being comfortably compliant, so can titanium bikes, steel can't. Its comfortable because its a dog.

    Even big fat riders can enjoy riding a fast lightweight bike. Save the Brooks saddles and the other pretty look at kit for the internet photo galleries. You'll get more enjoyment riding a bike you LOVE to ride, than you will riding a bike you love to LOOK at.

  20. #20
    The Brave Descender High Fist Shin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    Care to point out the medical journal you took that stat from, or is this another citation from the "mtnbke journal of absolute truths I pulled from my backside"?

    If Brooks saddles were horrible for everyone, then why do so many randonneurs use them for rides in excess of 75 hours? I mean, who'd want a comfortable saddle on a 750 mile ride with 35,000' of climbing? We're all just in it for the torture, so we cherry-pick the least comfortable equipment available because it looks pretty. I'm not saying they're the end all solution for everybody; but many of us really are comfortable on them. I did a 400k over the summer and used my B-17 Imperial saddle; never had any problems. So comfy, I even rode to work 2 days later.
    Indeed. I can't wait to develop an enlarged prostate. mtnbke says it'll happen, so it must be true.

    -Shin
    Last edited by High Fist Shin; 12-18-09 at 08:05 PM.
    In life there are no mistakes, only lessons. -Shin

  21. #21
    Senior Member
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    Update:

    Loving it so far. Did 40 miles on Saturday and 28 today. No problems -- no hot spots, no "pressure in the wrong places", nada.

    When I first climbed aboard today I noticed that my left sit-bone was just a hint tender, but after the first mile I didn't feel a thing.
    About 150 miles on it so far, and I had expected it to take several hundred for my butt to get acquainted. So how could it get better?

    I couldn't be more pleased.

  22. #22
    Lanterne Rouge
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    It's amazing to me that I see nearly no people around my neck of the woods riding brooks, but even god can't help you if you come on here and say something negative about them...

    For my own part, I have a B17-N, and I freaking hate it. the only reason I continue to suffer the thing is because I've been sold this idea by the brilliant minds of the internet that the heavens will open up and I will feel true enlightenment if I merely am willing to continue to suffer for more miles yet.

    I'd get rid of it in a heartbeat for a Titanium railed Aliante, I have one of those on my regular ride and it has never once made me miserable.
    "Having modest aspirations RULES." --patentcad
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  23. #23
    Gears? CliftonGK1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by superslomo View Post
    It's amazing to me that I see nearly no people around my neck of the woods riding brooks, but even god can't help you if you come on here and say something negative about them...
    I'm a huge fan of Brooks saddles, but I'm not one to crack on people for having legitimate issues with them. Plenty of people don't like them for a number of reasons: Too wide, rails are too short, it sags, it won't soften at all, etc. If you've ridden one and you don't like it for any number of good reasons, I won't argue that. It's the broad reaching unfounded statements that I take issue with.

    Quote Originally Posted by superslomo View Post
    For my own part, I have a B17-N, and I freaking hate it. the only reason I continue to suffer the thing is because I've been sold this idea by the brilliant minds of the internet that the heavens will open up and I will feel true enlightenment if I merely am willing to continue to suffer for more miles yet.
    I'll give you the same advice I give everyone about the Brooks. If it's not comfortable straight out of the box after a little bit of adjustment to the positioning, then stop using it. I don't know where the nasty rumour got started that a Brooks saddle means you have to suffer for upwards of 500 miles before it starts getting comfortable. Would you walk 100 miles in a pair of shoes which gave you blisters and hotspots just because someone else said they're the best shoes ever once you break them in? Then why do the same thing for your behind?
    "I feel like my world was classier before I found cyclocross."
    - Mandi M.

  24. #24
    Born Again Pagan irclean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliftonGK1 View Post
    I'm a huge fan of Brooks saddles, but I'm not one to crack on people for having legitimate issues with them. Plenty of people don't like them for a number of reasons: Too wide, rails are too short, it sags, it won't soften at all, etc. If you've ridden one and you don't like it for any number of good reasons, I won't argue that. It's the broad reaching unfounded statements that I take issue with.


    I'll give you the same advice I give everyone about the Brooks. If it's not comfortable straight out of the box after a little bit of adjustment to the positioning, then stop using it. I don't know where the nasty rumour got started that a Brooks saddle means you have to suffer for upwards of 500 miles before it starts getting comfortable. Would you walk 100 miles in a pair of shoes which gave you blisters and hotspots just because someone else said they're the best shoes ever once you break them in? Then why do the same thing for your behind?
    +1 Hear, hear. What I want to read about here is people's experience, not BS opinions based on hearsay. Like I've read in someone's sig - you are entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts. I make a lot of purchases based on poster's experiences - if it doesn't work for me, well then caveat emptor.
    Gettin' my Fred on.

  25. #25
    Senior Member rjc100's Avatar
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    I just received my B17 Champion saddle, and excited to use it, but my Thomson post, with no set back will not get proper position with B17, due to its short rails.
    Any suggestion on what post and set back others used?
    I have a Lemond Croix DeFer road nike.

    Thanks

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