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Old 04-03-14, 07:52 AM   #1
MEversbergII
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Brooks "City and Heavy Duty" saddles?

It'll be a long time before I'd get myself a Brooks to try, but it doesn't stop me from window shopping. The B17 appears to be the norm for everyone and that's likely what I'd end up getting. However, I'm curious about their "Heavy Duty" line: BROOKS ENGLAND LTD. | SADDLES | CITY+&+HEAVY+DUTY

As I'm getting a Linus Sport - a supposedly "light roadster" style, I'm guessing it's unsuitable without getting more upright bars. However, they are pretty neat looking, especially the B135, B190 and B33. Does anyone have any experiences with them, or know someone who has? Is all that extra springing particularly functional?

Thanks,

M.
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Old 04-03-14, 08:29 AM   #2
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I have ridden the B17, and like it. I also have a Flyer that I have never mounted... basically a a B17 with rear springs. The B17 isn't on my primary rider, until I lose more weight, but it is designed for a somewhat upright posture.

To be honest, I think those heavy duty saddles exist for the same reason that most comfort bikes have front shocks.. If someone hadn't walked for years, and suddenly started walking it would hurt for a while, just as with bicycle riding. Of course the first few times on a bike can be a little uncomfortable. In the words of Beverly Hostadter, "Buck up, sissy pants."

I am 57 years old, and a couple of years ago a friend asked me why bikes don't come with the wide soft saddles that we had back in the old days. Since I have a few older bikes, I showed her some of the saddles like we used to use... they had steel frames with a little foam and a vinyl cover... Something nobody would buy today... The answer is obviously that we don't need the saddles we had back in the day, we need the low weight and resilient bums (a term I use in honor of the British saddles being discussed) that we had back then. But, my friend is still looking for an appropriate couch to perch upon her seat post.

I think the Brooks heavy duty saddles are remakes of their saddles from back in the days, earlier than I was around, when people needed some cushion while riding on very rough surfaces... and they wanted something that provided as much isolation from the surface as possible.

Even though the Brooks line is pretty expensive to experiment with, I would personally ride several hundred miles on a B17 or Flyer before considering one of the more robust models... especially on a bike like the Linus Sport.
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Old 04-03-14, 01:00 PM   #3
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It's hard to beat a Brooks B33 for comfort in a city/urban setting.
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Old 04-03-14, 02:41 PM   #4
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they are like most of the Brooks stuff a century old design,

4 rail saddle frames limit the seat post choices to the basic stepped sorts that are 7/8"_22.2mm, at the top..
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Old 04-03-14, 03:00 PM   #5
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The Linus Sport looks pretty upright to me. I think it's fine to use one of the sprung Brooks for your bike as long as the seat post can accept the rails. Do note that they are sometimes noisier than other saddles.
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Old 04-03-14, 05:27 PM   #6
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Ah, I hadn't realized a Brooks requires it's own seat post. On the bright side, I guess that means I can swap out the whole post when it rains, instead of fiddling about with the clamp.

I'd wondered about noise. I have a "sprung" saddle on an old youth's 3-speed from the 70's that was quite creaky on bumps. On one hand that's noise, which is against The Rules. On the other hand it has a bit of charm to it.

The really sprung ones look a bit over the top - which has it's appeal. I saw a heavy duty Japanese utility bike from the 50's that had a super duper spring set on it's saddle. Was rather neat.

M.
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Old 04-03-14, 07:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Darwin View Post
I think the Brooks heavy duty saddles are remakes of their saddles from back in the days, earlier than I was around, when people needed some cushion while riding on very rough surfaces... and they wanted something that provided as much isolation from the surface as possible.

Even though the Brooks line is pretty expensive to experiment with, I would personally ride several hundred miles on a B17 or Flyer before considering one of the more robust models... especially on a bike like the Linus Sport.
Those heavy duty saddles were made when roads were cobble stone. I had the B73 and it was heavy but probably the most comfortable saddle ever. Unless it was a deep pot hole, I would not feel anything at all. All you really need is the Brooks Flyer because those springs are perfect for even poor city roads. I have the Flyer on a folding bike because the small wheels make for a very rough ride.

Last edited by Dahon.Steve; 04-04-14 at 07:10 PM.
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Old 04-03-14, 08:14 PM   #8
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I have a Brooks B72, It's quite lightweight and provides enough suspension for my needs. Very comfortable, would buy again.
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Old 04-03-14, 08:59 PM   #9
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Your weight will also be a factor in deciding how sprung a seat you want. The ones with more serious springs are also meant for heavier riders as well as the rougher road conditions.
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Old 04-03-14, 11:02 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MEversbergII View Post
It'll be a long time before I'd get myself a Brooks to try, but it doesn't stop me from window shopping. The B17 appears to be the norm for everyone and that's likely what I'd end up getting. However, I'm curious about their "Heavy Duty" line: BROOKS ENGLAND LTD. | SADDLES | CITY+&+HEAVY+DUTY

As I'm getting a Linus Sport - a supposedly "light roadster" style, I'm guessing it's unsuitable without getting more upright bars. However, they are pretty neat looking, especially the B135, B190 and B33. Does anyone have any experiences with them, or know someone who has? Is all that extra springing particularly functional?

Thanks,

M.
I've used Brooks saddles (B72, B66, and B73) exclusively on my regular bicycles since 1972. I like them all but probably the B66 best. None remain on the original bikes but all saddles are still in use on the pictured bikes except for the B72 that originally came on the the Raleigh Sports I bought in 1972. I left it overseas in 2012 where I used it on a bike after my wife mailed it to me to use in place of the ass hatchet that was on the Next bike that came with the job.

Note: They all felt great from mile one and I have never, ever treated them with anything but my own sweat.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg VaterLandB66.JPG (89.2 KB, 16 views)
File Type: jpg B72.jpg (89.7 KB, 19 views)
File Type: jpg CalvinB66.JPG (70.5 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg KynastB72.JPG (81.3 KB, 14 views)
File Type: jpg RagazziB66.jpg (65.2 KB, 19 views)
File Type: jpg SchwinnB73.jpg (87.6 KB, 19 views)
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Old 04-04-14, 04:31 AM   #11
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Brooks saddles... you either love 'em or hate 'em. I love them. For a Linus you probably want a B66/67, the B67 will fit on a modern seat post. I used the B-17 on my road racing bikes back in the day, I currently use the Flyer (B-17 with springs) on my tour and trekking bikes, they are semi-upright riding position bikes. I have a B-33 for my DL-1 Roadster but have not gotten around to mounting it yet. I weigh around 200# and the springs take the buzz out of the road as well as soften the bumps from the potholes.

Aaron
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Old 04-04-14, 09:12 AM   #12
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If you want a Brooks, get a Brooks. You don't need springs or "heavy duty" (what are you riding, a dump truck?), or any new gimmick the marketers come up with.

I have a B17 and it's great. That's a Brooks, not something with gas shocks and a bell that goes ring riiiinnnnnggg when you hit a bump.
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Old 04-04-14, 09:22 AM   #13
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Joe Breeze, back in the Dawn of MTB hippie era, got someplace to make a filler block to fit between those 2 pairs of saddle rails
(someone still makes those blocks) ..

to use a seat post with an integrated head (you may need a longer bolt, so a post with a common rather than proprietary bolt
would be selected)..
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Old 04-04-14, 03:22 PM   #14
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I'm a fan of the Brooks saddles. Currently, I'm using a Flyer Special on my Cafe Noir and have used others on other bikes. I'm 6'1" and 235 lbs. Great product with craftsmanship from a bygone era that will definitely class-up your ride. They are pricey. On the upside, if you don't like the saddle you can re-sell it very easily for close to what you paid for it.

P.S. Pure lanolin butter. Spread it over the springs and hit it with a hair dryer to melt it and allow it to run into all of the spring crevices. Then wipe off of the excess. Squeaks are gone. Works great for car doors too.
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Old 04-07-14, 08:37 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Joe Breeze, back in the Dawn of MTB hippie era, got someplace to make a filler block to fit between those 2 pairs of saddle rails
(someone still makes those blocks) ..

to use a seat post with an integrated head (you may need a longer bolt, so a post with a common rather than proprietary bolt
would be selected)..
It's called a Seat Sandwich and the longer bolt is supplied with it. I used one on my wife's B18 with a micro adjusting post. They're still made by Breeze.
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Old 04-07-14, 08:44 AM   #16
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Good, google-fu of ' breeze seat sandwich ' gets Brooks B66 Leather Bicycle Saddles ("Seats") from Harris Cyclery


the aluminum piece... looks like an Extrusion die was made ..
to produce the piece by the meter , and sawn & drilled ..

Last edited by fietsbob; 04-07-14 at 08:48 AM.
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