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Old 02-08-07, 07:34 PM   #1
gqsmoothie
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I never applied Proofide on my Brooks

...and I feel guilty about it. I know that I should have when I bought it. Being a cheap *ss I bought some baseball glove treatment. My B-17 isn't very comfy. I'm going to buy some proofide (really). Where's the cheapest place online? Also, I've put about 2000 uncomfortable miles on the saddle, is it too late for it to become comfortable, or might the proofide make it a lot better?
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Old 02-08-07, 07:41 PM   #2
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Are you thinking that the proofide will make the saddle more comfortable? It won't. Proofide is there to protect your saddle. The only thing you should put on your saddle is a substance to protect it ... and your butt. Try Wallingford bicycles ... I know they sell proofide. It's something like $10 for a tin, and a tin should last you several years. I apply it once a year.

BTW - Try tipping the nose of the saddle up a bit.
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Old 02-08-07, 08:44 PM   #3
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Methinks 2,000 miles is plenty of time, especially if you've adjusted it every now and then.

No matter how many people tout the comfort of the Brooks, not all butweesimo's are the same. There is no one saddle that will work for everyone. I vote that you should try a different saddle.
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Old 02-09-07, 05:32 PM   #4
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A think I'll buy a new saddle. I was hoping that Proofide would magically make my saddle comfy, but I didn't really think it would. This really annoys me that a Brooks (that one anyway) didn't work for me. I've heard for years about how awesome they are. Then I went through pain for 2,000 miles to have my hopes smashed. Now I gotta figure out which type of new saddle to purchase!! Any recommendations?

Gabe
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Old 02-10-07, 12:09 AM   #5
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It is entirely possible to ride for 2000 miles on a Brooks and have it feel like a torture device. All you have to do is have in-play any one or combination of the following:
A) Have the tilt wrong for you.
B) Have it set too far back or forward.
C) Have the wrong saddle for the type of riding you do.
D) Have the bars set too low or too high, in conjunction with the tilt.
E) Have sitbones too wide for the 17, it's not uncommon.
F) Have the idea that you have to "tough it out" with a Brooks because of all the stuff you've heard or read about.

So, where does it hurt? Up the middle? Inner thighs? Does it feel like your sitbones are being spread apart? Be specific. What bike do you ride? Describe your set up, what handlebars, how high in relation to the saddle are they? How much do you weigh? Have you estimated or measured your sitbone spread?How far do you ride? Etc...

There's lots to consider,and many of these things are variable and can be changed with a wrench in short order and a few miles.
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Old 02-10-07, 12:11 AM   #6
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I did around 13.5k miles on a B17 and wasn't totally comfortable, at times not at all. I then got a Selle Anatomica, which was the narrower Brooks Professional Model with a cutout and laminate modification. It's been way better. Probably a combination of the different saddle geometry and the modifications. Maybe a Brooks Professional on its own would suit you better, although I think its likely the modifications would make one comfortable straight out of the box.
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Old 02-10-07, 07:51 AM   #7
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would you guys please quit the use of the metric system? i mean really! it's miles folks, miles!!!

(just kiddin'!!!)
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Old 02-10-07, 09:33 AM   #8
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I really feel bad for you. I was about ready to give up bikes and switch to recumbents due to butt pain then I tried a B17 and have been smiling since. I agree, it would be nice to know where the pain is because it still might work for you with a few adjustments. Or if you have a god LBS, have them check your fit on it.
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Old 02-10-07, 10:18 AM   #9
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Nashbar sells a little brooks kit that has all essentials.. Proofide gives my brooks that nice slippery feel.. some people don't like it, I personally love it.. No friction is a good thing..

http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?c...nd%3A%20Brooks
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Old 02-10-07, 11:22 AM   #10
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IMO, many times the comfort problems with ANY saddle are more related to saddle position and overall fit of the bike, rather than the saddle itself.
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Old 02-10-07, 02:38 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brunop
would you guys please quit the use of the metric system? i mean really! it's miles folks, miles!!!

(just kiddin'!!!)
If I'm not mistaken, it's only miles in 2 countries in the world. The rest of the world has converted!! We went to the metric system here in Canada about 30 years ago. I hardly know what a mile is anymore.
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Old 02-10-07, 02:39 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chipcom
IMO, many times the comfort problems with ANY saddle are more related to saddle position and overall fit of the bike, rather than the saddle itself.
+1

Except if the saddle is too narrow for your sitbones.
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Old 02-10-07, 03:01 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gqsmoothie
...and I feel guilty about it. I know that I should have when I bought it. Being a cheap *ss I bought some baseball glove treatment. My B-17 isn't very comfy. I'm going to buy some proofide (really). Where's the cheapest place online? Also, I've put about 2000 uncomfortable miles on the saddle, is it too late for it to become comfortable, or might the proofide make it a lot better?
As others have said, Proofide isn't going to make the saddle more comfy (and the glove oil didn't make it less comfy). Saddle position is more than likely the culprit. Some folks have the saddle too far forward on the seatpost. If you flip the saddle over, you'll see that it has a steel frame across the back half inch or so. If you are sitting on that, it won't be comfortable no matter what you do. You need to have the saddle positioned so your sit bones are on the widest part of the saddle. Because a new brooks is so slippery, it also helps to tilt it up a degree or two to keep you from sliding forward onto the saddle nose. Once the saddle is broken in you can flatten the tilt out again. Keep playing with it because these saddles are the most comfy you'll find once you get it figured out.
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Old 02-10-07, 03:02 PM   #14
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Whoever said that I might have sitbones that are too wide for the B-17 might be correct. I do have pretty wide sit bones. Is there a particular model that might work for my wide sit bones?

As far as trying to adjust the angle of the saddle- I've played around with this hundreds of times.

The uncomfortableness is in my inner legs and rear of my butt. I think my butt may be too large for the B-17.

Also, my sitting position is more upright than a mtb downhill racer but not as vertical as someone on an old style british bike. -this is hard to explain in writing.
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Old 02-10-07, 03:44 PM   #15
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if you do decide to go for a different saddle, i would reccommend the selle italia flite classic. at least for me, within the first few miles i knew that this would be a comfortable saddle. although, i haven't tried a brooks (still debating whether i should give it a shot for my current bike build-up project) i think that the flite is the most comfortable saddle i have tried. i think they go for around US 70.
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Old 02-10-07, 05:34 PM   #16
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Despite the near religious fervor of many true believers, the Brooks isn't magical. After you exhaust the various adjustment options try something else if it isn't working out.

Many folks love the Brooks, but not everyone. I owned a Brooks many years ago and alas, I found it to just be another saddle. It was ok, but nothing special, to me at least. It requires more care than I cared to give (keep it dry) and was heavier than anything else I tried. Mine got all sagged and mishapen after being ridden soaked too many times.

Take that for what it is worth. It is just one man's opinion.
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Old 02-12-07, 07:48 PM   #17
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If my sit bones are wider than normal, I want a wider saddle? right?
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Old 02-12-07, 09:12 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gqsmoothie
If my sit bones are wider than normal, I want a wider saddle? right?
Right. Your sitbones are what support your weight. If you are supporting your weight with anything other than your sitbones, you will be in pain!
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Old 02-13-07, 04:55 AM   #19
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gqsmoothie:
I find the B17 to be comfortable. But the B67 is more so. Proximo is correct - no human has ever formed that steel horseshoe under a Brooks. If you maesure your sitbones you can gage what width to look for in a different saddle. Whether or not you buy a Brooks is somewhat imaterial if your sitbones are on the edge of the structure.

Try this:
Cut off teh flaps from a cardboard box. Stack them. Sit on them while you have your dinner, keeping your knees a little above your hips. Measure the indentations center to center. Now you will have a ballpark dimension for selecting a saddle.

If you go with another Brooks, like a luxurious B67, you will want your sitbones to be inside that steel frame bby about 1/2" to 3/4". Your sitbones are surrounded by a fleshy pad that is about the size of a 50cent piece, so you have to figure your bone width, plus about another 1" to 1-1/2". All that should fit inside the frame. A B67 will do that for almost any human.

Brooks saddles are worth it.
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Old 02-13-07, 12:59 PM   #20
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I was looking at my saddle over the weekend, and it seems that the leather hasn't molded to my butt at all. Maybe I should loosen the leather? I don't have it right here in front of me, but I was thinking that it takes a special tool for this, is that right?
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Old 02-14-07, 04:42 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gqsmoothie
I was looking at my saddle over the weekend, and it seems that the leather hasn't molded to my butt at all. Maybe I should loosen the leather? I don't have it right here in front of me, but I was thinking that it takes a special tool for this, is that right?
Do NOT touch that tensioner! You have several years to go before you even consider doing that. Be patient, measure your ischials, then decide if you want a different saddle - Brooks or not. You know, those Selle Anatomica saddles look pretty good. You still get benefits of leather but with a cutout.
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Old 02-14-07, 09:06 AM   #22
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THANKS to everyone for helping me with my saddle situation!!! I love these forums!!
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Old 02-14-07, 10:30 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gqsmoothie
I was looking at my saddle over the weekend, and it seems that the leather hasn't molded to my butt at all. Maybe I should loosen the leather? I don't have it right here in front of me, but I was thinking that it takes a special tool for this, is that right?
More sage advice from Sheldon Brown:

Most leather saddles have a tension-adjusting nut located under the nose of the saddle. Fortunately, this nut usually requires a special wrench, so most people leave it alone. In almost every case that I know of where someone has tried to adjust the tension with this nut, the saddle has been ruined. My advice is to leave it alone.

http://www.sheldonbrown.com/leather.html
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Old 02-14-07, 10:04 PM   #24
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Just because you don't see those supposedly easily identified magical indents from your sit bones, does not mean the saddle is not broken in and can't be comfortable. I think these indents get way too much attention on this site. JMHO
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Old 02-15-07, 01:02 PM   #25
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Just because you don't see those supposedly easily identified magical indents from your sit bones, does not mean the saddle is not broken in and can't be comfortable. I think these indents get way too much attention on this site. JMHO
Exactly.
Although it is typical to see them on a B17, my B67's have hardly any indents at all. I think it's a matter of weight dispersal, the 67's being wider and more generally supportive. My 17's have the dents, but it took a while...
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