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  1. #1
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    Brooks B-17 Position?

    Where should your seat bones land on a brooks B17 saddle?

    I just bought a slightly used one and am having a difficult time finding the correct saddle position.

    Currently I have the seat pushed as far back on the seatpost as possible which is limited by the rails curving inward at the nose (as a result it is slightly farther forward than my previous saddle).
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  2. #2
    Senior Member taliesin's Avatar
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    Your sit bones should be at least 1-2cm or so in front of the metal frame at the rear of the saddle. This is a perennial problem with Brooks saddles. You might need to get a seatpost with some additional setback to get it in the right position.
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    Senior Member d2create's Avatar
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    and nose up a bit or you will slide forward.
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    I don't like nose up at all, it just kills my soft tissues. Level works great for me.
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    Senior Member BCRider's Avatar
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    Or in my case about 4 to 5 degrees down on the nose. It all depends on how we are built and what is needed to keep the soft spot riding with little or no pressure.

    I just mounted up a Brooks B17N and it had to fit a bit to the rear as well. For me that meant I went from right forward on the old saddle to mid way along the rails on the Brooks. So there's no doubt that Brooks saddles seem to favour a more rearward position.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erik_A View Post
    Where should your seat bones land on a brooks B17 saddle?

    I just bought a slightly used one and am having a difficult time finding the correct saddle position.

    Currently I have the seat pushed as far back on the seatpost as possible which is limited by the rails curving inward at the nose (as a result it is slightly farther forward than my previous saddle).
    My bike has a slack-ish seat tube, and a straight seatpost. The stock saddle had the same rail length and basic shape as my Brooks, just nasty squishy gel for a surface. Stock position had felt good on long test rides, so I had them put the Brooks on to match. So far, so good. (to the tune of around 1000 miles)

    On a bike with more aggressive angles, it seems common to need a set-back seatpost.

  7. #7
    Senior Member tarwheel's Avatar
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    One of the problems with Brooks saddles is they were designed in an era when many bikes had slack seat tube angles. Plus, their rails are not long enough. So they can be very hard to adjust if your bike has steep angles (eg., 73.5-74). I was never able to move my Brooks saddles back far enough on some of my frames, and ended up having to buy a new seatpost with more setback. You might try looking for a new seatpost.

    Also, many riders have found that they need to elevate the nose of their Brooks saddles for them to fit properly. That was certainly the case for me. When I tried using my B17 with the top adjusted level, I always felt like I was sliding forward. I finally got it adjusted so it was comfortable but it looked very strange because I had to raise the front of the saddle so much.

    BTW, I've quit using Brooks saddles but possibly not forever. I've since been using a Fizik Vitesse, which is just as comfortable (or moreso) than my B17 but weighs half as much. It's also less expensive.

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    Senior Member bhop's Avatar
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    I have mine as far back as it will go. It feels ok, but I still feel like it should be back a slight bit more.. I think I might look for a new post myself.

  9. #9
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Mine is as far back as it will go and I sit on the rear rivets. You get used to it.

    Al

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    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    Brooks sit and ride differently than other saddles.

    I have always ridden with the seat basically back, and level.

    With the B-17, it's a little more forward, and nose up a hair.

    You just have to mess with it until you find the sweet spot - then you will love it.

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    Thanks very much for all of the advice!

  12. #12
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    sweet spot

    Quote Originally Posted by taliesin View Post
    Your sit bones should be at least 1-2cm or so in front of the metal frame at the rear of the saddle. This is a perennial problem with Brooks saddles. You might need to get a seatpost with some additional setback to get it in the right position.
    +1

    To acheive that pefect sweet spot I used this....ahhhhh comfort
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  13. #13
    Senior Member sherbornpeddler's Avatar
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    I need 35+ setback and thompson amounts to <25
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    i have to tip the nose up a little, i'm a light guy so i can't just rely on my body weight to keep me where i want on my saddle. hooray gravity.
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  15. #15
    Senior Member ollo_ollo's Avatar
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    Where should your seat bones land? I like my saddles level & Most of mine look like this:
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    visit my homebuilding blog: www.monoplanar.blogspot.com

  16. #16
    Senior Member tarwheel's Avatar
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    Check www.wallbike.com for setback seatposts. They sell a lot of Brooks saddles and offer setback seatposts because so many frames won't work with Brooks without them.

  17. #17
    Senior Member taliesin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
    Mine is as far back as it will go and I sit on the rear rivets. You get used to it.

    Al
    If your sit bones are on the rivets then you are essentially sitting on metal. The whole point of a Brooks is to sit on the suspended leather that will, over time, mold to your specific shape. The steel frame of a Brooks isn't going to mold to anything, and you may end up with back, joint or nerve problems as a result.

    If you want a leather saddle but find the rails on a B-17 are too short you could try a Brooks Swift or Swallow, both of which have longer rails (and are considerably more expensive). Velo-Orange has a Brooks-like leather saddle with longer rails that is similar to a Brooks Swallow. Also, it looks like Wall Bike will soon be stocking a leather saddle from Berthoud that will have longer usable rail length than a Brooks.
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  18. #18
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by taliesin View Post
    If your sit bones are on the rivets then you are essentially sitting on metal. The whole point of a Brooks is to sit on the suspended leather that will, over time, mold to your specific shape. The steel frame of a Brooks isn't going to mold to anything, and you may end up with back, joint or nerve problems as a result.

    If you want a leather saddle but find the rails on a B-17 are too short you could try a Brooks Swift or Swallow, both of which have longer rails (and are considerably more expensive). Velo-Orange has a Brooks-like leather saddle with longer rails that is similar to a Brooks Swallow. Also, it looks like Wall Bike will soon be stocking a leather saddle from Berthoud that will have longer usable rail length than a Brooks.
    I've been using a B17 or Team Pro for several years now. I don't always sit on the metal, but find it a solid position. I don't like the saggy middle if I slide forward a bit - i like a bit more firmness and support from my saddle.
    I do like the Team Pro - don't think about it when riding. I do think a setback seatpost would help a bit.
    Al

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