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Surprised at seat weights

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Surprised at seat weights

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Old 08-10-18, 04:38 AM
  #26  
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A comfortable leather saddle does not have to be heavy and stuck in the past when it come to design.
The Ti railed Gilles Berthoud Galibier saddle I have weighs a little less than my Turbo saddles cost about the same as a Ti railed Brooks saddle.
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Old 08-10-18, 05:48 AM
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Originally Posted by bikingshearer View Post
San Marcos Rolls on all my bikes (except the Brooks Pro on my Eroica ride). Mostly Titantios,
I checked, those look "right" but at almost 400g, closing in on the Avocet's weight.

Originally Posted by RiddleOfSteel View Post
a fully-rideable, lugged-frame bike of mine under a certain weight (like 20.0 lb). I can feel a B17 out back as opposed to something much lighter--the pendulum motion--when out of the saddle.
I need to get a scale for weighing bikes, but I suspect I'm not even close to 20.0LB.

I spend less time out of the saddle than other riders, in my experience. So I might not notice the swaying, but that doesn't mean the weight isn't there.

Originally Posted by Chombi1 View Post
The Ti railed Gilles Berthoud Galibier
Interesting choice. BTW, 10x what I paid for the Avocet on eBay. I've never had what one might call a cutaway saddle.
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Old 08-10-18, 11:45 AM
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If memory serves me, Vetta saddles came with CroMo, manganese, vanadium, or titanium rails. I haven't come across any with aluminum rails, though that certainly doesn't mean they never produced any.
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Old 08-12-18, 09:48 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by tiger1964 View Post
I checked, those look "right" but at almost 400g, closing in on the Avocet's weight.



I need to get a scale for weighing bikes, but I suspect I'm not even close to 20.0LB.

I spend less time out of the saddle than other riders, in my experience. So I might not notice the swaying, but that doesn't mean the weight isn't there.



Interesting choice. BTW, 10x what I paid for the Avocet on eBay. I've never had what one might call a cutaway saddle.
I'm just thankful that there are some bikes that feel great when your in the saddle, as opposed to needing to feel like a "complete" bike by performing/feeling good both in and out of the saddle. Our state had its primaries last Tuesday and I biked to what I was officially informed of, as an official ballot drop box. It didn't exist. It was on the way to work and I milled around the immediate area (crummy construction-torn roads and all) on sidewalks and rock-strewn bike lanes, searching in vain for a non-existent drop box. The next one was south 1.5 miles, south of work as well. I was already a bit late, and grumpily mounted my bike and made my way through a crummy intersection. I got another 100 feet or so, and the bike I was riding, a Davidson Impulse (10s Dura Ace STIs etc), reminded me that it was a very good riding bike as I slowly gained speed and made my way south. Immediately my mood changed as I thought "man, this thing rides so well!" I wasn't going fast, climbing or accelerating, just moving along casually like any of us would. No saddle weight to worry about or even factor into the ride equation--it was just good.
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Old 08-13-18, 05:39 AM
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Originally Posted by RiddleOfSteel View Post
an official ballot drop box. It didn't exist. [snip] Immediately my mood changed as I thought "man, this thing rides so well!"
So, you're going to write your local government and thank them for screwing up the ballot box, so you could get some more miles in?

And thank you for voting, or at least attempting to.
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Old 08-13-18, 07:53 AM
  #31  
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I have that Avocet Racing 1 on my 77 Colnago. The only reason it will remain is for the sentimental/era value. They are heavier due to the steel rails. The seat is comfy but for this bikes purpose, comfort did not enter into the mind of the builder/racer/owner. Would I choose that now? Probably not.
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Old 08-13-18, 08:02 AM
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Originally Posted by RiddleOfSteel View Post
I'm just thankful that there are some bikes that feel great when your in the saddle, as opposed to needing to feel like a "complete" bike by performing/feeling good both in and out of the saddle. Our state had its primaries last Tuesday and I biked to what I was officially informed of, as an official ballot drop box. It didn't exist. It was on the way to work and I milled around the immediate area (crummy construction-torn roads and all) on sidewalks and rock-strewn bike lanes, searching in vain for a non-existent drop box. The next one was south 1.5 miles, south of work as well. I was already a bit late, and grumpily mounted my bike and made my way through a crummy intersection. I got another 100 feet or so, and the bike I was riding, a Davidson Impulse (10s Dura Ace STIs etc), reminded me that it was a very good riding bike as I slowly gained speed and made my way south. Immediately my mood changed as I thought "man, this thing rides so well!" I wasn't going fast, climbing or accelerating, just moving along casually like any of us would. No saddle weight to worry about or even factor into the ride equation--it was just good.
I hear ya. There's just something about a bike that coasts well, smoothly and quickly, that gives you a certain sense of satisfaction. Like, "I might pedal, or I might not. It goes pretty good either way". 😎
Back to saddles, I'm lovin' my Brooks B-68 touring saddle. I got lucky this time, and the leather feels great, in an "invisible" kind of way. 😉
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Old 08-13-18, 08:46 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by tiger1964 View Post
I shudder to think how much the Ideale weighs that I recently bought for my Gitane project. Regardless, I'll still use it.
I checked: 535g
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Old 08-13-18, 01:25 PM
  #34  
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Just like Velo Orange does Rivendell better than Rivendell does Rivendell, Vetta did Avocet better than Avocet did Avocet. So it's no wonder that Avocet went to that great aviary in the sky.
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Old 08-13-18, 10:39 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by tiger1964 View Post
So, you're going to write your local government and thank them for screwing up the ballot box, so you could get some more miles in?

And thank you for voting, or at least attempting to.
Haha, that would be something! I have inquired about street sweeping as it pertains to bike lanes. The fellow leading the communications for the street sweeping efforts is a bike commuter as well! I told him I have given much thought into getting a push broom and sweeping the most troublesome swaths on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon.

As to voting, I made it to the downtown-located drop box (King County's own building) which was thankfully present, and dropped off my ballot.
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Old 08-13-18, 11:13 PM
  #36  
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I had an Avocet III that broke. I don't recall what the difference was between the avocet 1 and 2 was, but I'm pretty sure it wasn't weight. I still have some avocet saddles, I don't think they agree with my backside all that well any more.
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Old 08-13-18, 11:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
Vetta was more of a late 80s and early 90s thing. I am pretty sure it could not be original. Palo Altos were sold as frames anyway, IIRC. Oh, and Palo Alto owned Avocet, more or less.

400g wasn't untypical for saddles of the time. I agree if the Vetta is 213g, it must have aluminum rails. Aluminum rail saddles break. I remember a friend of mine breaking a Mod III like 40 miles from home on a ride. Funny, to me...

The Avocet Mod I was the entry level saddle with the thickest padding. Supposedly aimed at beginners and intermediates. Mod II was their standard racing saddle. Firmer and I believe a touch lighter. Mod III was the same but with aluminum rails. Top model was the Avocet RS, which was a rebranded Sella Italia RS, a precursor to the Turbo and very similar.

At some point in the early 80s, all of the Avocet saddles kept the same model names, but they changed. My recollection of this period is a bit vague. Most were rebadged Turbos, more or less.

That may be more than anyone wanted to know about Avocet. For some reason they seem to be largely forgotten. At one time they really did loom large. Almost everyone rode Avocet saddles.
Good post. I raced the Avocet 3 in the mid '70s. It and the 2 were vastly better seats than the 1. The 2 and 3 (at least at that time) were made by Selle Italia and were stamped "made in Italy" underneath. I never knew about the RS and am guessing they weren't sold until well into the '80s.

I loved the aluminum rails. Rode and raced 1000 miles on New England roads on mine. But I knew it would break sooner or later on a ride so it stayed on my racing bike when I sold it. (I highly doubt any real harm would be done if the rails broke, Just ruin a ride. The young man who bought the bike got far more than he had any idea of. If he rode it enough to break the seat, he probably would forgive me for selling him a great bike as-is.) Now I ride ti railed seats for the same reason (and have broken one).

Ben
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Old 08-14-18, 08:53 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
Good post. I raced the Avocet 3 in the mid '70s. It and the 2 were vastly better seats than the 1. The 2 and 3 (at least at that time) were made by Selle Italia and were stamped "made in Italy" underneath. I never knew about the RS and am guessing they weren't sold until well into the '80s.
The Avocet RS was actually an early model. I think they came out in late 78, for sure they were advertised by the beginning of 79. The original saddle on my 78 Masi was an RS, that's part of how I know. I've had it since Dec 79.

There was a Selle Italia version at the same time, also lived about a year and a half, but I never saw one. Sometime in 1980 the Turbo came out, which was the basically the same saddle with the back shell extended a bit to cover the somewhat unsightly rail caps in the back. Avocet simply started calling the Turbo the 'RS', and putting their name on them. This went on as far as I can recall for several years, long after the original SI RS had been replaced. Selle Itallia didn't to my recollection start selling Turbos till about 1982 in my area (nor Cal). I kinda think there must've been some sort of 5 year no compete agreement.

Yeah, broken aluminum rails were more annoying than dangerous. The Avocet seat posts broke too, and those actually could injure you severely. I actually had one until Jobst Brandt made me take it off - really. I recall some wry comment about the nature of the potential injury.

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Old 08-14-18, 09:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
The Avocet seat posts broke too, and those actually could injure you severely. I actually had one until Jobst Brandt made me take it off - really. I recall some wry comment about the nature of the potential injury.
...and guess what I am using? Curious about the nature and frequency of failures. I could replace it, but so far, no troubles.
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Old 08-14-18, 10:47 AM
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I found an Avocet 3 for sale once but passed, I could already see the rails were bent uneven. Still have my Avocet 1 and 2 on active duty.

Weight, I don’t care. I clock in at 131 lbs anyway.
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Old 08-14-18, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by tiger1964 View Post
...and guess what I am using? Curious about the nature and frequency of failures. I could replace it, but so far, no troubles.
The tops broke off, where you see the sand cast marks. I don't know how frequent it was. JB was convinced failure was imminent.

FWIW, I had used mine for years and 10s of thousands of miles and never broke it. But, I had sanded the rough sections smooth and polished the whole thing, because it seemed like sharp edges were a bad idea. I had no knowledge of what stress risers were at the time, but somehow I got the concept intuitively. I suspect that is why I never had problems. Also, I was really skinny as a teenager...

At the least I would keep a very close eye on it. Inspect with a magnifying lens. I'd seriously consider replacement. Even if there's only a 10% chance of problems, it's too much.
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Old 08-14-18, 12:25 PM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by davester View Post
IMHO a weight difference of a couple of pounds on a bike is something that only newbies and racers worry about and is almost irrelevant to anybody except racers when they are hillclimbing or accelerating during a sprint. There's no way on earth that you'll be able to detect a 1/2 lb difference while riding. Saddles especially are where comfort is by far the most important attribute, so worrying about saddle weight is pointless. Think about it, would you rather be 10 seconds faster but have a sore butt on the next big climb you do or 10 seconds slower and totally comfortable?
I may not notice .5# while riding, but I just want to chime in that weight and comfort arent mutually exclusive.
People ride light AND comfortable saddles all the time.
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Old 08-14-18, 02:44 PM
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Avocet saddles go back to the 1977 model year. At the time, their lightest model was the Racing III, with aluminum rails and a claimed weight of 235g. However, the initial offering included 8 models, so there was substantial variation. As noted, Avocet and Palo Alto shared a common owner but were separate entities, presumably for legal and financial purposes.


Vetta was a Swiss company that started out with bicycles racks, then expanded into other accessories such as wind trainers, chain cleaners, computers, helmets and saddles. The saddles date back to at least 1983. Like Avocet they offered a variety of saddles. An early American adopter was Western States Imports, owner of the Centurion brand, who spec'd them on their 1984 mid-range models.


I'm not surprised at the weight variation, as it's a function of the intended market, driven by the intended use and price. Like many other members, I select my saddles based on comfort. My preference is the Cinelli Unicanitor, though that may be largely a case of acclimation, as it was my 2nd "good" racing saddle and I rode it constantly for 6 six years before experimenting with others. Despite numerous dalliances, I routinely return to the Unicanitor. Consequently, whenever I find one in good condition, at a reasonable price, I pick it up.
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