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Saddle Cover For Riding Leather Saddles In The Rain?

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Saddle Cover For Riding Leather Saddles In The Rain?

Old 11-04-23, 06:48 PM
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Saddle Cover For Riding Leather Saddles In The Rain?

Hello,

I ride leather saddles exclusively and like to keep them covered even when it is not raining. You see, I live in the sweaty southeast where your shorts get soggy from sweat which will greatly reduce the life of leather saddles. TIP: Break in a new saddle without the cover on it and once it is broken in put a cover on it to greatly extend its life.

Performance (Forte) used to make a saddle cover that was composed of thin rubber/poly backed fabric (see photos). It was thin, worked well, and had no seams that could leak. Well, Performance now only exists mostly in name only and my stockpile of covers has run out.

I have done extensive searching on this forum and the web and about the only thing t hat I can find are the Aardvark covers but with little description of what they actually are or what they are made of or what saddles they will fit.

Do any of you have any suggestions for anything that might be comparable to the old performance covers or know anything abut the Aardvark cover?

Thanks,
Steve


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Old 11-04-23, 07:00 PM
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I’m curious too.
mice been using, but am not satisfied with shower caps, swimming caps, and plastic bags.
nothing so far works well when riding, and lifespans are short.
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Old 11-04-23, 07:17 PM
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The Aardvark cover gets four stars on Amazon (66 reviews) I'd risk it. FWIW.

Last edited by Leisesturm; 11-04-23 at 09:20 PM.
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Old 11-04-23, 08:01 PM
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Not a cover but an observation I made today. Rode to the farmers market on a warm, wet November day. Noticed and thought about that bike's seat being a Terry Fly and that it was going to get wet. (My other market bike has a plastic Specialized for just that reason.) Parked my bike under a tree with about 1/3 of its leaves. Rained off and on over my longish market stay. (I've been going there for decades, know many vendors and since COVID, this has been much of my social life. Today the market crown was small and I had several long chats.) Got back to my bike. And noticed the water on the seat was neatly beaded up. No soakage. So that SnoSeal I put on a year ago is working! I like! (It might be Obenauf's Heavy Duty LP. I switched on the advice of the cobble I take my shoes to. The Obenauf's is more expensive. Both are really good. SnoSeal has a 50 year track record with me.)

I don't know know much difference the beeswax preservatives would make with sweat, but it sure extends the life of leather around water and I cannot see how it could hurt.
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Old 11-04-23, 08:19 PM
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Been using a leather Sella Italia saddle for 13 years and it’s still fine with no cover or owt. That thing has seen a lot of sweat as it’s on my turbo now. Can’t really see the point of getting a saddle of one material and covering it with a different material when using it to be honest (generating more landfill in the process)? Though the idea above sounds a good one.

Last edited by choddo; 11-05-23 at 02:00 AM.
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Old 11-04-23, 08:25 PM
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You could buy them from Brooks or Amazon. Or you can get them from Erik’s for about $15 instead of the $25 that Amazon wants.
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Old 11-04-23, 08:30 PM
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I like the Brooks covers, they’ll eventually wear through the nose but last a good whole for the price.
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Old 11-04-23, 08:41 PM
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Here are two from Rivendell bicycle and Berthound Cycles
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Old 11-05-23, 11:45 AM
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Selle Anatomica.

https://selleanatomica.com/products/...oof-rain-cover

I assume these covers are all limited to certain sizes and shapes, lest they wrinkle or fold, which sounds uncomfortable.
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Old 11-05-23, 04:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Rick_D
Selle Anatomica.

https://selleanatomica.com/products/...oof-rain-cover

I assume these covers are all limited to certain sizes and shapes, lest they wrinkle or fold, which sounds uncomfortable.
From what I can gather on the net this is the Aardvark cover.
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Old 11-05-23, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve_sr
From what I can gather on the net this is the Aardvark cover.
Could be. Cheaper here though. Aardvark Waterproof Saddle Cover Standard (Black) - Performance Bicycle (performancebike.com)
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Old 11-05-23, 05:48 PM
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Originally Posted by bboy314
I like the Brooks covers,
I actually have at least one of the Brooks covers. It was my understanding that these were intended for covering the saddle while parked and not for riding on. I guess that I might try it out and see how it works riding.

Originally Posted by bboy314
they’ll eventually wear through the nose but last a good whole for the price.
The nose rivet is not kind to either the Brooks of Forte covers.
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Old 11-05-23, 07:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve_sr
I actually have at least one of the Brooks covers. It was my understanding that these were intended for covering the saddle while parked and not for riding on. I guess that I might try it out and see how it works riding.



The nose rivet is not kind to either the Brooks of Forte covers.
I think you’re right about Brooks’ intentions, but I’ve used them for years while riding as well.
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Old 11-05-23, 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by bboy314
I think you’re right about Brooks’ intentions, but I’ve used them for years while riding as well.
I think that I will put a piece of duct (or gorilla) tape on the inside of the cover to protect it from the nose rivet. This may make it last longer.
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Old 11-05-23, 08:51 PM
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Long thread on Touring forum.

Leather Saddle Rain Cover?

Last edited by tcs; 11-06-23 at 09:39 AM.
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Old 11-06-23, 08:24 AM
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I also ride in the hot and humid southeast U.S., and since I killed a B-17 riding a hot and sweaty century, I know what O.P. is facing.

I've had good luck with the Aardvark cover, though I don't know precisely what they're made of. I've ridden many miles on a Brooks with the Aardvark on top. A few observations:

First, Proofhide covered saddles can withstand a fair bit of water, or sweat. Start there. You can apply it in the morning, if you commute to work by bike, and let the hot summer sun melt it into the saddle leather as long as it's not going to rain that day.

Second, if you ride with the cover on, you'll eventually wear the cover out, and it'll start leaking. How soon will it leak? Depends, I took one on my cross-country tour, and it was still functional (i.e., not leaking) three months later. To extend the cover's life, start the day riding with the cover in a bar or seat bag, and onbly when you notice you're getting really sweaty (like if you leave a butt-shaped puddle when you sit down on a wood or concrete bench), put the cover on for the rest of the day.

Third, on tour at night or if you're carrying the bike on a car rack, you can put a plastic grocery bag over the saddle, tie it off around the seatpost, and put an old (leaky) Aardvark on the saddle over the bag. That'll hold it on and prevent the wind from tearing a hole in the bag.
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Old 11-06-23, 01:19 PM
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Originally Posted by bboy314
I think you’re right about Brooks’ intentions, but I’ve used them for years while riding as well.
I found another issue with the Brooks covers and that is that they are sized for Brooks. I also have Leper and now Infinity saddles which are too long. The issue with too long is that it leaves the "hook" part of the Velcro cover wrap on the top of the saddle where it will snag and ruin your shorts.
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Old 11-06-23, 04:41 PM
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A shower cap works. I bought 100 disposable shower caps for about $9. I keep one in my tool kit. It is tiny when folded and weighs nothing.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 11-07-23, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Steve_sr
From what I can gather on the net this is the Aardvark cover.
I don't own either, but here's an image of the Selle Anatomica with wrap-up coverage for the bottom:



and an image of the Aardvark from below:

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Old 11-07-23, 01:07 PM
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The new synthetic saddles are more comfortable than my old Brooks saddles and not worries about rain. If your sweat is getting the saddle wet then you are a good candidate for saddle sore infections.
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Old 11-09-23, 04:27 PM
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There doesn't seem to be a huge consensus so I am leaning towards the Aardvark.Based on the packaging it comes in two sizes - Regular and Small. Do any of you know which size is likely to fit a Brooks Swift or B17? I also never got a good indication of what material the Aardvark is made out of. For those of you that have them is it just coated nylon or something thicker like neoprene (wet suit material)?

For completeness I thought that I would document what other options that I have been able to find online. Unfortunately there is limited information on sizing and material available and if it has built-in gel/padding.

Serfas - https://www.serfas.com/shop/products...-saddle-cover/

Jandd Mountaineering - https://www.jandd.com/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=FSCW

Fahrer Kappe - https://www.perennialcycle.com/fahre...dle-cover.html

Planet Bike - https://www.planetbike.com/waterproof-bike-seat-cover/

Randi Jo Fabrications - https://randijofab.com/products/wate...a-saddle-cover

XeroCovers - https://www.xerocovers.com/

Gotta go... May edit and add more later...


Thanks,
Steve
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Old 11-09-23, 05:16 PM
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My first choice for something like this is one sold by REI so I can return it easily. I bought the Ergon SMC Sport Gel mens saddle and paid $90 for it. Very comfortable and provides good support where it matters. It is a fully synthetic saddle and so not going to absorb water. Overall the Ergon saddles are rated very highly by those who have bought them.
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Old 11-10-23, 09:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Swampthing
I’m curious too.
mice been using, but am not satisfied with shower caps, swimming caps, and plastic bags.
nothing so far works well when riding, and lifespans are short.
I'd try these https://www.amazon.com/TYGA-Disposab.../dp/B08JD43P4B before looking further. I used to use bread bags, when I rode leather saddles, but that was long ago and we've had a bit of technological advancement in the ensuing decades.
(:8
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Old 11-10-23, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Calsun
The new synthetic saddles are more comfortable than my old Brooks saddles and not worries about rain. If your sweat is getting the saddle wet then you are a good candidate for saddle sore infections.
It's a very individual thing, saddle fit - what's great for you could be painful for someone else. I've had a few reasonably modern saddles that were good for casual use, the Charge Spoon comes to mind, or WTB Pure, but for serious distance I've not found anything better than a Unicanitor. But finding the right polymer saddle is a bit hit and miss, unless you get lucky in a Specialised store. Some people never find a plastic saddle to fit them, and rely on the moldability of leather, but of course the fact you can mould a saddle into the right shape means it can lose its shape if you don't pamper it.
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Old 11-10-23, 01:51 PM
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Look up the Jandd website. They make a good cover
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