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Old 07-01-08, 02:49 PM   #1
Greg_R
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Brooks / Leather saddles in the rain

I am a new Brooks owner and am wondering if I need to take any special precautions for rainy conditions. I have full fenders on the bike (it's my commuter) so I think the saddle will stay dry while I'm riding. Am I correct? Also, I was planning on throwing a shower cap over the seat when I'm not riding it. Will this be a problem in hot conditions and will it cause problems with the leather (breathing / drying out, ???)? Any other suggestions for taking care of this seat in rainy conditions? Thanks!
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Old 07-01-08, 03:18 PM   #2
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You've got most of it. However, even with your rear planted on top of the saddle they can still get wet while riding in a downpour. If you use a shower cap while riding it will soon shred. For that you need a heavy duty nylon saddle cover.

Since you're commuting you may consider a rain cape which will also alleviate the wet saddle problem. Search on rain capes to see how others have liked them.
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Old 07-01-08, 03:37 PM   #3
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I just keep mine oiled with the proprietary wax mixture. I've found the tan ones much easier to care for than the black, which make my backside dark.
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Old 07-01-08, 03:46 PM   #4
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Plastic sandwich bag and a rubber band? Its not good for long term storage as the saddle can't breath, but for a short term bag job while in a store, its cheap and effective.
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Old 07-01-08, 05:28 PM   #5
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I keep a Brooks saddle cover stuffed between the nose of the saddle and the rails. Mostly I use it when the bike is parked and it's wet, but if it starts pouring, it's where I want it. Oh: and fenders are a good idea.
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Old 07-01-08, 06:07 PM   #6
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Get a cheap (<$1.00) PVC showercap from your local Xmart. It's the perfect size to protect your Brooks saddle. While you're there, get two and use the second as a perfect-sized helmet cover. You can't beat the price and they come in stylish colors!
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Old 07-01-08, 07:02 PM   #7
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If it is raining and I am riding my butt and the rain cape keep the saddle plenty dry. I also treat mine with Proofide a couple/three times a year. When the bike is parked I use the cheap shower caps...get mine free from the hotels I stay in while traveling. Good choice on the fenders, they help keep the entire bike cleaner in the long run.

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Old 07-02-08, 06:56 AM   #8
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A plastic grocery bag stuffed in the rails has worked fine for me for 30 years.
When you're riding, unless you're out of the saddle an awful lot, your butt makes a more than adequate rain cover. If you don't have fenders, the bottom is going to get wet regardless of how you protect the top.
A little Proofide every couple months & you're set; on the other hand my brother's Brooks has basically never seen Proofide in 20 years; the leather is a bit gnarly, but intact.
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Old 07-02-08, 12:52 PM   #9
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I get the feeling people think saddle leather is somehow a fragile thing. It isn't. Properly maintained there's no need to worry about it in the rain, snow or mud. Brooks leather in particular is incredibly thick and strong. You RIDE on it after all. It's getting doused in sweat constantly, which is a lot harder and saltier than soft rainwater. You obviously don't want to soak it in a lake or fail to wax it when it gets dry, but otherwise don't worry about it. If you have to store it outside just pop the saddle and post off and bring it inside. No need for showercaps.
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Old 07-02-08, 05:40 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Cosmoline View Post
I get the feeling people think saddle leather is somehow a fragile thing. It isn't. Properly maintained there's no need to worry about it in the rain, snow or mud. Brooks leather in particular is incredibly thick and strong. You RIDE on it after all. It's getting doused in sweat constantly, which is a lot harder and saltier than soft rainwater. You obviously don't want to soak it in a lake or fail to wax it when it gets dry, but otherwise don't worry about it. If you have to store it outside just pop the saddle and post off and bring it inside. No need for showercaps.

+1
Brooks saddles are tough. Don't worry too much. Riding them in the rain just makes them more comfortable. My newest one got it's first ride (50 miles) in the rain. It also ended up in the Trinity River that day because I crashed on one the dams that the trails crosses over. Have fun.
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Old 07-03-08, 04:44 AM   #11
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. . . My newest one got it's first ride (50 miles) in the rain. . . .
Same here and the resulting light and dark leather patterns reflecting (as it were) my sunless regions have made it unique; gave it a mottled look, like a Texas longhorn.

By the way, I managed later to get too much SnoSeal in it and it made for a slippery platform (buttform?) until I removed some layers down to the leather.
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Old 07-03-08, 07:44 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cosmoline View Post
I get the feeling people think saddle leather is somehow a fragile thing. It isn't. Properly maintained there's no need to worry about it in the rain, snow or mud. Brooks leather in particular is incredibly thick and strong. You RIDE on it after all. It's getting doused in sweat constantly, which is a lot harder and saltier than soft rainwater. You obviously don't want to soak it in a lake or fail to wax it when it gets dry, but otherwise don't worry about it. If you have to store it outside just pop the saddle and post off and bring it inside. No need for showercaps.
HELL NO! I got rid of all my QR seatposts so I wouldn't have to keep messing with dialing the damn things back in every time, also to minimize illicit removal. Shower caps/plastic bags are cheap/free.

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