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Old 09-22-06, 12:33 PM   #1
squirtdad
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brooks B17 honey vs black Functional difference??

Hi,
Other than color preference, is there any practical function difference between a "honey" (appears less treated to me) and a black B17?

I am adding a note....it seems that there is a strong preference for the honey from all the pics I've seen on the forum

thanks

Last edited by squirtdad; 09-22-06 at 01:23 PM.
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Old 09-22-06, 12:35 PM   #2
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There shouldn't be. From what I understand the Brooks "Professional" has a thicker leather, but between B17's, they should be functionally the same. I've ridden both, but since one had significantly more miles on it than the other, I can't state any direct knowledge.
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Old 09-22-06, 12:51 PM   #3
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I've got both. No functional difference.
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Old 09-22-06, 01:09 PM   #4
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Honey will stain pants slightly brown, black will stain them slightly black. Not a big deal if you're always in black lycra but a consideration if you're ever in street clothes.
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Old 09-22-06, 01:32 PM   #5
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- never had a staining issue w/either honey or black b17s (have two of each in service)...

- i guess it was the 'luck of the draw,' but i found that the two black b17s were more 'broken in' out of the box, and required slight tightening, while both honeys were 'harder' and required more break in... others have reported no difference, so there are variations from saddle to saddle even in the same model line...

- one thing you can count on: a saddle that gets more comfortable with use...
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Old 09-22-06, 01:57 PM   #6
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My Honey B17 has taken much longer to break in than my Black B17. Someone explained to me that the leather on the Honey is thicker/better than the Black (maybe I'll measure that when I get home), because blemishes are easier to see on the Honey.
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Old 09-22-06, 02:29 PM   #7
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I wouldn't call it staining as much as soiling. I've got a black b17 and I hand wash my lycra, they turn the water sorta dark gray. that could be soot from all the diesel around here, but my shorts are always dirtier than my jersey.
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Old 09-22-06, 03:25 PM   #8
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They're definitely all treated. Hides are green from treatments before they get their final dye job.
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Old 09-22-06, 06:30 PM   #9
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I have five Brooks saddles, ranging from a B17N which I bought back in the early 1970s, to a brand new B17 (Honey). I found that the Honey Pro I bought at the end of the summer last year, turned darker where it got wet with sweat, and so I thought I'd help it along with some dark shoe polish; I quite like the patina it's developing. Here are some pics just after I bought it, and recently (after ~1500miles):

- Wil
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Old 09-22-06, 07:29 PM   #10
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No functional difference. Leather is thicker on a Brooks 'Pro' than the others. Mine is honey color, and after treating it with proofhide, riding and sweating on it, has turned to a rich, silky, milk chocolate color that is truly beautiful. The only bad thing was that somehow it permanently stained the side of my top tube close to the seat stay lug, right on the "Irio Tommasini" signature. I guess it had to of come from my shorts somehow. I had to use some rubbing compound to get it off.

It's not bad now, but it's still slightly discolored some.
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Old 09-22-06, 10:33 PM   #11
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I have a number of Brooks saddles ranging from 39 Y.O. to near new. All but one broke in within a few months & got better over time. The one exception is a green B17 Special Edition. It has much thicker leather & is only slightly broken in after a bit over 2,000 miles. Not uncomfortable, but not as good as my other saddles. I was talking saddles with the owner of my LBS & he has a similar Brooks with over 10,000 miles which is much like mine. I may try soaking it in warm water followed by a ride as this worked on an old B72 that was dried out/hard. Apparently there are a few thick pieces of leather out there. Here are pics to illustrate. Maroon is very comfortable, Green one needs improvement.
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Old 09-22-06, 11:22 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by linux_author
- never had a staining issue w/either honey or black b17s (have two of each in service)...
+1

Of the 6 Brooks saddles I have used not a single one has stained. If a Brooks saddle stains it's because you have put some sort of oil on it, they will not stain if properly treated.
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Old 09-22-06, 11:51 PM   #13
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Anyone who can identify a Brooks can spot a honey or brown version from blocks away.
On the other hand, I've had a couple of people start explaining the concept of why I need a Brooks saddle after several minutes of conversation, including discussion of my old bike; never noticing the black B-17 until it was pointed out. It's invisible! Might be a good thing if you're worried about theft!
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