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  1. #1
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    Used Brooks questions

    Since there seems to be so many Brooks users here maybe I you can help.

    I've got 2 OLD leather saddles, one an Ideale of unknown model and a Brooks B-15.

    The Ideal is on the narrow side, but in very good shape. I've been riding it for a few weeks and find it OK in terms of comfort. The question is, can a saddle broken in to another's sit bones be re-broken-in to my own? I'm doing a century tomorrow on this saddle, this may answer any question I may have about the comfort of this antique.

    The Brooks is intact but the leather is cracked in many places, and the lower part of the saddle that covers the side of the rails is bending outwards. I tightened this saddle a bit as it was very loose when I found it using the Ideal as a guide as to how tight to adjust it.

    Is the Brooks worth riding, or should I just use it to decorate the living room?

    I've got a big ride (~350 miles in 48 hours or less) coming up at the end of April and I've not settled on a saddle yet. I'm trying to keep the cost of this trip down, and avoiding the cost of a new B-17 would help, as I need a new chain and cassette, a few dry bags, etc....

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Banned wagathon's Avatar
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    If you've never tightened it before, it probably has a long way to go before you'd have to ever worry about tearing the leather at a brad--probably one of the two at the sides of the nose is where it'll go someday if it was to tear. I'm guessing the cracks on the surface are not a problem at all.

    Can you press down with your thumb and and still get plenty of spring action up and down? If not, that would be too tight.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Everest's Avatar
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    Make sure to give it a nice coat of proofide.
    Road: Quattro Assi Scandium w/ SRAM Rival and Rolf Echelon's
    Mountain: 2005 Specialized Enduro Comp
    2003 Gary Fisher Tassajara

  4. #4
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    neatsfoot oil will soften it right up and prevent any cracking. tighten the saddle before you soften it to avoid over tensioning.

  5. #5
    Senior Member onbike 1939's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CBolt
    neatsfoot oil will soften it right up and prevent any cracking. tighten the saddle before you soften it to avoid over tensioning.
    Bad idea. Avoid neatsfoot as it will attract mould after a while. Better to use a leather conditioner which is made for the job e.g. Hydrophane or similar and don't use too much.
    Forget tensioning unless the saddle is really sagging which I would doubt.

  6. #6
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    The B-15 did need tensioning, it sagged quite a bit. I would not be surprised if this saddle was 30 years old.

    I did a century on the Ideale a few days ago. It was somewhat comfortable, but I did notice I would slide down into a comfortable postion if I didn't push myself onto the back of the saddle. I've tried nose up a bit more, but then it puts too much pressure on areas that are not my sit bones.

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