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  1. #1
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    saddles again - and only partially about Brooks....

    I've been off my bike since 2005; just started again 5 weeks ago; now riding 10-12 miles 4-5 days a week. I'd like to do a 50 miler this year. I quit biking because I started to feel unstable on the bike and because of perineal(?) numbness after 10 miles. I finally figured my seat was too high, and lowering it restored my stability, but numbness is still an issue. I just turned 69, so I very much want to take care of my perineum.

    I'm 5' 7", 240 lbs. I ride a good vintage steel (butted 531) bike that I've had since 1981. The saddle is an Avocet Touring I from 1981. My sense is that my sit bones sink into the soft part of the saddle, which allows my perineum to sink onto the saddle, which causes the numbness. I'm still experimenting with adjusting the saddle, but nothing has worked well yet. If I ride with padded shorts, I can go longer without numbness, but it still comes on, say at 10 miles instead of at 6.

    A forum post directed me to Cervelo's 'four and a half rules of road saddles' (http://www.cervelo.com/en/engineerin...-saddles-.html) which makes a lot of sense to me.

    I'm looking for a wide-ish, flat-ish, minimally padded saddle. Can anyone point me to a brand and model?

    In the late '70s and early '80s, I road a cheap Italian leather saddle on my beloved Atala Competezione. The saddle seemed to disappear under me. Alas the bike was stolen, but it raises the issue of a leather saddle now.

    The Brooks B17 is highly recommended, of course. But if I get a B17, and it develops dimples to conform to my sit bones, would that leave me in essentially the same situation I'm in with my Avocet?

    Thanks in advance for your thoughts.

  2. #2
    Senior Member gabedad's Avatar
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  3. #3
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    IVe been Running the same sort of saddle for 30 years Brooks it's the Pro, non brooks its a SI Turbo/Avocet Race, also by SI.

    AFAIK Avocet touring Bumps Up, under the sit bones.. (have 1 of those, too) rather than dimpled under stress..


    Just take Breaks off the bike , more often, as the tingles are felt.

    hit the LBS and try saddles they stock .. out here there is a return and try something else options.

  4. #4
    Senior Member bbeck's Avatar
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    Brooks B17 is a little softer than some models. Try a Brooks Team Pro. It uses a stiffer hide. I had one for a while but could never get it to break in. I now ride a sprung version of the B17 and so far love it.
    Brandon Gallatin, Tn.
    http://www.strava.com/athletes/bwbeck

  5. #5
    Senior Member Bent Bill's Avatar
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    Remember... Four boxes keep us free: the soap box, the ballot box, the jury
    box, and the cartridge box.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Waxbytes's Avatar
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    I'm currently riding a Specialized Toupe 143 mm wide. I have no numbness issues but after 60 or so miles it feels a bit too hard.
    That could be just that I'm not in shape for longer rides.
    Uhmm...

  7. #7
    Slacker ZippyThePinhead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gabedad View Post
    I'll second that recommendation.

  8. #8
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    Thanks. I'm leaning towards 1) continuing to tweak my Avocet adjustment; 2) trying the Toupe from an LBS and 3) going to a Brooks or Selle Anatomica if the Toupe doesn't work. The Avocet has bumps for the ischial tuberosities, but the bumps are pretty soft.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZippyThePinhead View Post
    I'll second that recommendation.
    3rd to approve the Sella Anatomica....matter of fact...I loved my first one so much...I bought a 2nd one for my MTN bike
    2010 Marin Alp/Lucas Valley now lives on the trainer , 2011 Marin Apline Trail 29er, 2012 Giant Defy 2 Composite

  10. #10
    Slacker ZippyThePinhead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LocoCycle View Post
    3rd to approve the Sella Anatomica....matter of fact...I loved my first one so much...I bought a 2nd one for my MTN bike
    Yes, I did the same. But I should mention that I broke the rails on my first SA, and had them replaced. For clydes, if you're buying one of these off eBay, be advised that the rails on the older Titanico model are soft steel, whereas the rails on the newer Titanico X are chromoly. So in other words, make sure to buy the Titanico X model.

  11. #11
    Senior Member JackoDandy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by philbob57 View Post
    Thanks. I'm leaning towards 1) continuing to tweak my Avocet adjustment; 2) trying the Toupe from an LBS and 3) going to a Brooks or Selle Anatomica if the Toupe doesn't work. The Avocet has bumps for the ischial tuberosities, but the bumps are pretty soft.
    4th to approve the Titanico X. I have ridden extensively (at 290lbs) the B17 and the Titanico X. Both saddles are very comfy for me and I noticed the difference immediately with the Titanico X and after a few rides on the Brooks B17. Of the two, I slightly prefer the 'X' and that's just because it looks more 'sporty' on my road bike than the B17.

    However, both saddles need 'saddle sauce' to keep them waterproofed etc.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZippyThePinhead View Post
    Yes, I did the same. But I should mention that I broke the rails on my first SA, and had them replaced. For clydes, if you're buying one of these off eBay, be advised that the rails on the older Titanico model are soft steel, whereas the rails on the newer Titanico X are chromoly. So in other words, make sure to buy the Titanico X model.
    yes...100% the X model.......for Clydes
    2010 Marin Alp/Lucas Valley now lives on the trainer , 2011 Marin Apline Trail 29er, 2012 Giant Defy 2 Composite

  13. #13
    Senior Member Cyril's Avatar
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    Brooks swift

  14. #14
    Endangered Serotta Rider Lacumo's Avatar
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    1---Another Yes vote for the Selle AnAtomica Titanico X.
    2---The following quote is a post from Joe Minton in another recent and very similar thread. I believe it's one of the more experienced and insightful posts I've seen on this subject...
    "I, too, am a Clyde (6'1", 235#). I am 72 yrs old and just back on a bike after 30 years. I have spent hundreds of dollars on seats trying to get rid of the pain at the front of my perineum. The answer for me, after many trials, is the ISM (Adamo) Prologue (ismseat.com); it has no nose and is completely comfortable. The Adamo Prologue is the most comfortable seat I have ever used and I reccommend it without reservation. Never had a problem with my sit-bones by the way. I was a fairly successful club racer 50 years ago and always had trouble with seats. At first I used the ubiquitous Brooks B17 and then settled on the Swallow as being the least painfull. I was young and simply assumed that pain was part of road racing. I was wrong; no person, man or woman, should rest his privates on the equivalent of an axe handle. Now, fifty years later, I am not young, fit, tough or stupid. I have learned to question everything, including traditions and unnecessary discomfort. I also have a normally enlarged prostate gland and that doesn't help. I am told that most any man at fifty or more has this condition. I am also still forty pounds overweight (down from fifty). When I showed my Adamo to my family doctor, he said: "Hmm, that's kinda obvious isn't it."

    Whatever you do --- good luck and best wishes with the outcome. Beating that "bottom numbness/pain" is a necessary prerequisite to experiencing enjoyable cycling.

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