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  1. #1
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    New Saddle Preliminary Review

    Due to a recent medical condition, the saddles that have served me so well (Brooks Pro, Specialized Alias and Specialized Toupe) all have become quite uncomfortable. Based on a recommendation of another rider, I've been trying a new saddle that seems oddly to combine the advantages of all the saddles I like without the discomfort. It's the E3 Form from Performance. http://www.performancebike.com/shop/...tegory_ID=5210

    I've got only 9 hours on the saddle now with the longest stretch being three hours. Here what I can say about it.

    It really supports primarily the sit bones with little pressure anywhere else. While I thought this might be difficult after several hours, it has not turned out to be the case. Rather, as soon as you put the legs into pedal mode, it feels as if you're really just balancing on the seat... very bearable. However, if you sit up and coast, you can feel the pressure directly on the sit bones. So, I suspect this saddle won't be terribly comfortable for those riding cruisers. I've always had to make a trade off with any other saddle in terms of the angle. If it's titled too far back, then riding in the drops is uncomfortable with my body weight on the nose of the saddle. If the saddle is titled too far forward, I'm constantly sliding forward with too much weight on the hands. In the past I've been able to reach a workable compromise with the balance allowing me to ride on the hoods and occasionally on the drops with no discomfort. With this saddle, however, once I got it dialed in, it was comfortable on the hoods, on the drops and sitting straight up (as long as I was not easing up on my pedaling). Dialed in turned out to be the saddle completely level and just a hair closer to the bars than my previous setup. One thing that feels surprisingly nice is that you can't feel the saddle rub against your thighs, regardless of the position on your bars. At first, this felt a bit weird, but I very quickly (on the first ride) got used to it. Long story short, at the current sale price, I've replaced all three of my other saddles at about the cost of one good saddle. I'm a happy with this and hope it is as satisfying on even longer rides. Oh yeah, and it's lighter than all but the Toupe - 188 grams.
    Last edited by BSLeVan; 01-22-08 at 09:00 AM.
    Oh I used to be disgusted and now I try to be amused. But since their wings have got rusted, you know, the angels wanna wear my red shoes. But when they told me 'bout their side of the bargain, that's when I knew that I could not refuse. And I won't get any older, now the angels wanna wear my red shoes.

  2. #2
    Senior Member freeranger's Avatar
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    Looks like the top is fairly flat, so the full width could be put to use. Tried and sent back a saddle that was advertised as 5.5" wide, but not nearly that much was useful, and I must have wide sit bones. Not ordering another saddle until spring, when I have time to try it out so I don't run out of time to return it if I don't like it. The E3 could possibly be a contender, though I have one other I want to try first. Do like the shape of the E3, and the flat top.

  3. #3
    feros ferio John E's Avatar
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    Please give us another update after your have spent more time on it. We all know that different riders prefer different saddles, and you are noting that the same rider may prefer different saddles at different points in his life.
    "Early to bed, early to rise. Work like hell, and advertise." -- George Stahlman
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  4. #4
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John E View Post
    Please give us another update after your have spent more time on it. We all know that different riders prefer different saddles, and you are noting that the same rider may prefer different saddles at different points in his life.
    Took a couple of years and I got onto the flite Titanium saddle. That was comfy but I only had one bike and one saddle to adjust to. Then I had a Prostate op and the butt changed. That Flite was really painfull. So down to the LBS and the new anatomical saddles had just come out. Got one with the cutaway and it was fine- for about a month. So for the next 6 years it was down to the LBS for new saddles every couple of months or so. I tried every saddle going and never did find a saddle that worked. Then I decided to try a flite Max Gel. That was fine for about 6 months and then just a bit of discomfort came in after about 60 miles. Back to the LBS and another try and it was similatr to the Max gel and that was a San Marco Aero. Still the cutaway but a bit of padding. That was the last saddle I bought- about 18 months ago. Looking at the shape- It is very similar to the Flite Titanium and the Max gel.

    So in the last12 to 15 years- I have used one similar type of saddle and other than the years with the butt adapting as the Prostate area changed- Have always found them comfortable. Only difference is that the bikes have changed from MTB's to Road and that has had a lot do with Butt Comfort.

    And incidentally - Two road bikes and the Max gel on one and the Aero on the other. Both are comfortable but I found the original Flite titanium last year. Decided to try it again- fitted it- sat on it and changed it. That it not a nice saddle any longer.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


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  5. #5
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Very interesting.

    With my current sit bone issue the one place where I'm most comfortable is sitting directly top of the sit bone (your commuter position) so this could at least be some temporary relief. I also like the looks of the extra width as I probably wouldn't have an issue filling up the full width!! The weight is a lot less than anything I'm currrently using except for the Toupe. Unfortunately I don't get real acquainted with a saddle unless I've been on it for 5-6-7 hours. What works great for 3 hours can turn into a tearful experience on the long, hilly rides. Or maybe I'm just mentally challenged that way.

    And at $40 what the heck.....Might just call the local store and see if they have 'em. Unfortunately I may just need to expand the garage to hold all these saddles I've collected.

    My biggest concern is the fellow that developed it was associated with UNC-Ch...........the dark side! And a Science background at UNC-Ch.......I don't know if I'd told anyone about that.

  6. #6
    Recumbent Trike countersTrike's Avatar
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    Glad it works well. 4 feet by 1 1/2 feet of open cell 2 inch thick foam on an ergomatic carbon fiber hard shell seat works for me!

    countersTrike

  7. #7
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Well I made it to the store and looked at the E3 pretty closely but chose not to try it right now. I'm worried it's not wide enough across the sit area for me. If this sitting plaform was wider it might have worked for me.

    But I did venture over to see what other stuff they had on sale and wound up finding some pretty good prices on chains and other stuff......

  8. #8
    Muscle bike design spec robtown's Avatar
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    I had one for a short while (excellent price). For me it was better than most saddles, but not the B17. I believe I rode one 30+ mile ride. I put it on a fancy bike I built up for resale due to its titanium rails being a selling point. It's also quite a bit lighter than a Brooks.
    Korval is Ships
    See my Hyperlite 411 it's the photo model on OutRiderUSA web page

  9. #9
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    I am so disappointed. Finished a 4.5 hour ride yesterday (it was cold and windy, but the new insulated water bottles kept my warm sweet tea quite drinkable & I stopped twice at convenience stores to warm up and get some chow and more tea). I digress. I really thought this saddle was going to be the solution to my saddle woes, but about an hour after my ride, discomfort and then pain started to creep in.... in all the wrong places. So, I measured the the space between my sit bones again; this time much more carefully. I then compared the measurements with the width of the new saddle. Turns out the sit bones are probably just a wee bit to the outside of the saddle width. Hence, I was probably riding with the saddle supporting the very inside edges of my sit bones with, over time, most of my weight resting on soft tissue. After 4.5 hours, I must have compressed things pretty good. This morning the discomfort and pain are not evident, but looks like my optimism about the saddle was premature. I'll be taking it back this week. The search goes on. Two lessons learned: 1. Measure things very carefully; 2. I'm 56 years old and really should stop making premature judgments about things. You'd think I'd know better by now.
    Last edited by BSLeVan; 01-22-08 at 09:03 AM.
    Oh I used to be disgusted and now I try to be amused. But since their wings have got rusted, you know, the angels wanna wear my red shoes. But when they told me 'bout their side of the bargain, that's when I knew that I could not refuse. And I won't get any older, now the angels wanna wear my red shoes.

  10. #10
    Let's do a Century jppe's Avatar
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    Sorry it didn't work out. I noticed it seemed a bit narrow when I took a look at it. In fact I went back to my car and got my measuring tape and measured it just to be sure. It was a good bit more narrow that what I'm currently using. The quest for the perfect saddle continues on my end as well.........

  11. #11
    Senior Member Ranger63's Avatar
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    E3

    amazing you should post.
    After the fizik fiasco I got my refund from nashbar and just saturday ordered the E3 figuring at the price (vs what I ploped down for the fizz)it had to be better.
    I'm indoor riding so I'll add my .02 on how it works for a 2 hour mag trainer ride as soon as it arrives.

  12. #12
    Senior Member George's Avatar
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    When I bought the Roubaix, I upgraded the saddle and I went with the Alias and I've been on it up to 3 hours and it works great. Sorry it didn't work out for you though.
    George

  13. #13
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    Well, I took the plunge and ordered a Selle An-Atomica saddle this afternoon. After visiting the web site, I sent an email to them and within an hour got a reply from Tom Milton (president/owner?). I was impressed with the depth of his answer concerning my saddle issues/problems. He even offered advice to address my concerns that included recommending the product of another company. Now I've just got to wait for the saddle to get here.
    Oh I used to be disgusted and now I try to be amused. But since their wings have got rusted, you know, the angels wanna wear my red shoes. But when they told me 'bout their side of the bargain, that's when I knew that I could not refuse. And I won't get any older, now the angels wanna wear my red shoes.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Ranger63's Avatar
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    E3

    Sorry to hear the saddle didn't measure up (no pun intended).
    I saddles I currently have on my bikes are all wider in the back section. I know I have serious issues with hip/thigh pain if the sit bones arn't properly supported (something about the nerve bundles going from the back into the leg) But then,I can't sit in movie theatre seats or overstuffed chairs either.
    I'm not sure,but I continually get the feeling saddles and pedals are created for YOUNG riders who weigh far under what I do..
    The E3 should arrive from Nashbar this week and I'll give it a week on the mag trainer (where I tend to alternate between the drops and upright positions) If it's too narrow in the arse end I'll 'know it immediately'.
    Thanks for your input!

  15. #15
    meow bostongarden's Avatar
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    I'm not up on the current seats...I ride with my old Avocet Racing leather saddle and have had been pretty comfortable during my "return" to cycling during the past 4+ months. I purchased the original Selle Italia Flite when it came out...tried it a bit and found it did not work for me...went back to the beefier Avocet saddle and was a happy camper....I've seen some on eBay every now and then.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bostongarden View Post
    I'm not up on the current seats...I ride with my old Avocet Racing leather saddle and have had been pretty comfortable during my "return" to cycling during the past 4+ months. I purchased the original Selle Italia Flite when it came out...tried it a bit and found it did not work for me...went back to the beefier Avocet saddle and was a happy camper....I've seen some on eBay every now and then.
    If you've found a saddle that you like, buy a spare whenever you get the opportunity because when yours dies (and it will some day) that exact model won't be available anymore.

  17. #17
    Small Member maddmaxx's Avatar
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    Due to the lay down position on the TT bike I was surprised that non of my saddles addressed a pressing problem so I gave up and tried a TT specific saddle. The Profile Design Tyi-Stryke saddle seems to defy all previous logic about saddles. It is narrow and it is very soft (deeply cushoned sink into it a long way soft). Obviously that and the overly large cutout are aimed at solving the pressing problem but the saddle also seems to be comfortable in all the other performance areas. I may have to try this on a conventional road bike to see if it works there.

  18. #18
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
    If you've found a saddle that you like, buy a spare whenever you get the opportunity because when yours dies (and it will some day) that exact model won't be available anymore.
    I just wish I had done that on the Tandem. Tandems do require a different type of saddle for me and I bought a Selle Trans Am. It worked- but unfortunately the pilot likes it aswell. He is bigger than me so he got it. Took a long time to find another Trans Am and I got it- It is comfy- but it is the female form- but I don't let other riders know this very often.

    There are a few notable saddles around that are used by the "Experienced Riders" and you don't see them in the shops very often. Rolls are one of those names and if your butt fits a Rolls- Then it is good. I tried one and it was great- Went to the shop to get one and the material had changed- and the padding and the shape. The one I bought was either a Copy- or they have changed the style over the years. So if a saddle fits- give it a good run then get a spare.
    How long was I in the army? Five foot seven.


    Spike Milligan

  19. #19
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    I don't know how many saddles I've tried but all, including cutouts, cause numbness in the nether regions after about 30min. I don't suffer other discomfort, but the numbness worries me and if you ride in a paceline as I frequently do it's difficult/dangerous to stand up to let the blood flow.

    About a year ago, someone on one of the forums recommended the Rido saddle http://www.rido-cyclesaddles.com/home-page-c100000.html, so I bought one from the UK for $35 including fast shipping.
    It looks a bit weird, but I immediately felt I was sitting on my sit bones. After many miles on our tandem, I've had no numbnes and no discomfort. A year later, I bought another one for our other tandem. The current saddle is quite wide, but Rido will be introducinga racing model in the spring, so then I'll buy some for my road bikes.
    However, some friends of ours bought a couple and don't like them, so I'm sure they would be interested in selling.

    I have no commercial or other relationship with Rido, other than being a satisfied customer.

  20. #20
    meow bostongarden's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
    If you've found a saddle that you like, buy a spare whenever you get the opportunity because when yours dies (and it will some day) that exact model won't be available anymore.
    Great idea!! I guess my backup is on one of my less frequently used mountain bikes -- and I never thought of it that way. But, I do like eBay and Craigslist, so, I'll keep an eye out every now and then, Thanks for the great idea.

  21. #21
    My other car is a bike TruF's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BSLeVan View Post
    Well, I took the plunge and ordered a Selle An-Atomica saddle this afternoon. After visiting the web site, I sent an email to them and within an hour got a reply from Tom Milton (president/owner?). I was impressed with the depth of his answer concerning my saddle issues/problems. He even offered advice to address my concerns that included recommending the product of another company. Now I've just got to wait for the saddle to get here.
    Let us know how that SA works. I tried one in December, and it was wonderful. And I didn't even know what it was, it just happened to be on the bike I was test-riding. All I know is that nothing hurt back there. It just felt comfie. Of course, that was a short ride. Good luck!

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by BSLeVan View Post
    Well, I took the plunge and ordered a Selle An-Atomica saddle this afternoon. After visiting the web site, I sent an email to them and within an hour got a reply from Tom Milton (president/owner?). I was impressed with the depth of his answer concerning my saddle issues/problems. He even offered advice to address my concerns that included recommending the product of another company. Now I've just got to wait for the saddle to get here.
    Please let us know how this one works out. I am planning on trying one when I build up my next long distance bike.

    Also, what model are did you order?

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Smokester View Post
    Please let us know how this one works out. I am planning on trying one when I build up my next long distance bike.

    Also, what model are did you order?
    I ordered the Titanico LD Second Skin Watershed. I've only got five 1 to 1.5 hours sessions on the trainer with it thus far. I'm reluctant to make any pronouncements on the suitability for my riding for fear of putting a jinx on what has been a very impressive start. How impressive you might ask? Well, impressive enough that I took my 20+ year old Brooks Pro and had it modified with the same cut out design. And, the character of the Brooks has changed in a positive direction. So, additional time will tell the full story.
    Oh I used to be disgusted and now I try to be amused. But since their wings have got rusted, you know, the angels wanna wear my red shoes. But when they told me 'bout their side of the bargain, that's when I knew that I could not refuse. And I won't get any older, now the angels wanna wear my red shoes.

  24. #24
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    The Evil Empire(Performance) makes nothing. Who makes this saddle for them? Velo?

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by oilman_15106 View Post
    The Evil Empire(Performance) makes nothing. Who makes this saddle for them? Velo?
    If you are asking about the Selle Anatomica I believe they are their own company and their web site can be found here:

    http://www.selleanatomica.com/

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