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Brooks Saddle dressing - latest opinions?

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Brooks Saddle dressing - latest opinions?

Old 05-11-19, 07:09 AM
  #26  
Trevtassie
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Originally Posted by Big Block View Post
Good thing you didn't buy up with the old formulation.

You are using a waterproofing liquid of unknown ingredients, for a purpose not identified as suitable by the product manufacturer, and contrary to the clear advice of the saddle manufacturer and so voiding any warranty.

That is usually what happens to threads on Brooks saddles and treatments.

Whilst I recover Brooks saddle frames with new leather, I do use Proofide to protect my work.
Yep, you usually get somebody saying Proofride is the only thing that can be used on leather saddles, ever, because some other products aren't suitable, therefore all other products aren't suitable.
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Old 05-11-19, 07:48 AM
  #27  
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Those vintage Pros from the mid-70s are the best ever. I have a couple and hope they will last forever. The current Pro is a different shape, I don't care for them.

One other thing that was not mentioned is that your chosen goop (proofide, obenaufs, whatever) should be slightly warm so that it absorbs more easily - and apply it to the underside of the saddle. I try to get some up in the "nose" area if I can.

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Old 05-11-19, 08:16 AM
  #28  
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I was visiting a Western wear/saddle and boot shop here in Ventura . They sell some cowboy boots that are very expensive and require breaking in as with saddles . A guy there was working in a set of boots for guy who said he was having trouble breaking them in. The guy was going at it with a rag and some sort of treatment. I asked him what he used , and he told me Doc Martens rub. It comes in a silver tin and seems a bit softer than other products I have tried and works great on my Brooks Pro saddles. When I bought my Mondia, it had been left in a storage locker in Corona California for many years and was intact but needed help . It only took a few treatments and that 1972 Brooks Pro came right back to life. I use it regularly . I agree that the older Brooks saddles seem to fit well, I have one newer B17 that seems pretty hard still after 2-3 years of use . I just keep applying the Doc Martens Rub and it is slowly coming to life. Joe joesvintageroadbikes.wordpress
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Old 05-11-19, 09:10 AM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by Trevtassie View Post
Yep, you usually get somebody saying Proofride is the only thing that can be used on leather saddles, ever, because some other products aren't suitable, therefore all other products aren't suitable.
I wouldn't say no other products are suitable. I do say, "how will I know which other products are suitable, without possibly trashing expensive NOS vintage saddles?"
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Old 05-11-19, 09:53 AM
  #30  
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Lacking the internet in 1975, I applied a tablespoon worth of Proofide to the underside of a saddle
[a Brooks team pro.. ]
upside down , warmed so the waxes in the dressing melted, so taken up like a sponge,

and rode on it for over 20 years, 10 touring, many long ones.. , 10 before touring .

... now 40 years on it's still fine, just took it off for storage purposes
as the damp basement had mildew appearing on it. ...





....
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Old 05-11-19, 01:04 PM
  #31  
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I experimented with saxophone cork grease back when it was made of tallow, lanolin and wax. Now it's a formulation of oils so I stay with proofhide because it just works. A couple of dabs, on the top, twice a year. I like hard leather saddles, right out of the box.
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Old 05-11-19, 04:30 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by Road Fan View Post
It's interesting that you're following the Brooks care protocols on your house-made saddles using your own selection of hides. Conjecture: the hides you select are similar to the Brooks selections, at least in their best days, and that you choose grain orientations that are similar to those of Brooks.

I wonder if any conclusions can be drawn about Ideale saddles, especially the 90 and 92?
Your conjecture is close. The hides I use are around the 6.5mm thick. The thickest Brooks use is 5mm in the Professional series. The hide I use is from Argentina where the cattle are unaffected by the Mad Cow Disease management protocols. They get to live longer and the leather is very strong.

Ideals saddles treated with the "Rebour process" are quite different. And the process is not going to be shared by those that know of it. If you are a member of the Classic Rendevous group then do a search for the thread 'Rebour Treatment" for Katia Daydé's comments of 15 Feb 2018. Rudi tried hard to get an understanding and was advised that
The process will remain a secret, it is part of the Idéale « savoir-faire », we have the big responsibility to make it persist forever. I hope you understand that.
What I can say: Yes it involve some grease, but this is not the main element, this is a long manual process with specific gestures, the required time depends on the leather. It is done before assembling, and a specific check is done when the saddle is assembled.
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Old 05-11-19, 05:18 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by Big Block View Post
Your conjecture is close. The hides I use are around the 6.5mm thick. The thickest Brooks use is 5mm in the Professional series. The hide I use is from Argentina where the cattle are unaffected by the Mad Cow Disease management protocols. They get to live longer and the leather is very strong.

Ideals saddles treated with the "Rebour process" are quite different. And the process is not going to be shared by those that know of it. If you are a member of the Classic Rendevous group then do a search for the thread 'Rebour Treatment" for Katia Daydé's comments of 15 Feb 2018. Rudi tried hard to get an understanding and was advised that
Would you recommend any treatments for a Rebour Ideale, as my 92 is?

Argentinian makes a lot of sense.
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Old 05-11-19, 05:54 PM
  #34  
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I just use Brooks Proofhide on my saddles, so far its about once every two years, but I do use a saddle cover in wet weather
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Old 05-11-19, 06:03 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by Road Fan View Post
Would you recommend any treatments for a Rebour Ideale, as my 92 is?
I suggest you join Classic Rendezvous and ask Katia (one of the owners of the re-established Ideale Saddles). It appears they have regular contact with the former employees which helped them to use the original equipment.
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Old 05-11-19, 06:14 PM
  #36  
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.

Fyi, I have been a CR member for at least 15 years. With our common use of pseudonyms here on BF, I’m not shocked you don’t know me. But after so long, I take hiatus from time to time.

Originally Posted by Big Block View Post
I suggest you join Classic Rendezvous and ask Katia (one of the owners of the re-established Ideale Saddles). It appears they have regular contact with the former employees which helped them to use the original equipment.
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Old 05-12-19, 08:02 AM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
My usual technique is to read old posts where @rhm details the proper way to care for a leather saddle and then not bother to do anything but ride it and try to keep it out of the rain.
Yes, that's the best policy: do nothing until it is obviously necessary.
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Old 05-12-19, 10:38 AM
  #38  
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Proofide.

Not "proofHide" or "proofRide."

Proofide.








Sno-Seal

Not "SnowSeal."



I have used Sno-Seal for two different things- I was disappointed in each thing. Based on internet recommendations- I put Sno-Seal on 2 pairs of nice leather boots- It turned this gorgeous supple leather into oily, damp leather that made my boots feel like they'd been sitting in a bucket of diesel fuel for a few months. It effectively ruined both pairs of boots. Because I already had the Sno-Seal, I cheaped out when I got my B17 and used it on there- I think it allowed the leather to stretch and I can feel the cantle plate in the back.

The next time I decide to condition my B17, I'll get a tin of Proofide. I don't know if people are just cheaping out if they already have stuff, or if they think it's a cash grab by Brooks or they just want to be smarter than Brooks...

For whatever it's worth- I thought it was a Brooks 'CambRium' and was really glad someone corrected me to "Cambium."

Also for whatever it's worth- Random internet clowns may very possibly not know more than you do, regardless of how authoritatively they may speak on the subject.
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Old 05-15-19, 09:31 AM
  #39  
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I use Proofide whenever possible, but I had some leftover Musher's Secret (for dog's feet in the snow), and it seemed to work quite well.

I used it in the same manner as Proofide, apply, let dry overnight, buff off.

https://www.chewy.com/mushers-secret...tion/dp/128336

According to the website it contains:

White and Yellow Beeswax, Carnauba, and Candelilla Wax and White and Vegetable Oils with Vitamin E.

I am curious if any of the above sound harmful to the saddle?
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Old 05-15-19, 09:34 AM
  #40  
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Just get a new tin of the Brooks goop and ride it.
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Old 05-15-19, 02:33 PM
  #41  
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So, I rooted around and found another 25 mg tin of Proofide, sealed. I opened it up - scent not too bad, consistency a little gooey but nowhere near as bad as some others that I dumped. I tried it on my recently-acquired Brooks Professional Select. It took a while to spread the material evenly due to the gooeyness, which is not as I recall, but I did get it pretty evenly slathered. Now that it's soaked in and given a rub, it's beginning to look a little more porous, the surface does not feel so hard, and it has a small, healthy amount of give - the feeling seems familiar like my ... first Brooks Pro nearly 50 years ago! I'll take a ride later today. I'm not looking to make this saddle soft like a Selle Anatomica, because that's not how they were.

Anybody know the history of the Brooks Select saddles? The ones that I've bought new were from about 2011 or so, based on markings on the boxes.
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