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Toe straps to match Brooks Honey

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Toe straps to match Brooks Honey

Old 06-22-20, 12:27 PM
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Rooney
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Toe straps to match Brooks Honey

I recently got a Brooks B17 saddle in honey, but my brown (more of a tan) MKS toe straps are much lighter. I plan to use honey Brooks microfiber tape when I convert the downtube shifters to bar ends and would like the toe straps to match better. I've found photos of Brooks toe straps, but it doesn't seem they produce them anymore. The only options I've only found so far are Plemons and Velo Orange I'm not a fan of Plemons' buckling system. I haven't found any pictures of the Velo Orange straps with the Brooks honey but have seen posts say the VO bar tape isn't quite the same honey color.

So, to keep myself from rambling further, are there any other options for honey-colored toe straps to match a Brooks saddle? Thank you!
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Old 06-22-20, 12:37 PM
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79pmooney
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You could try shoe polish on the MKS straps. Here in Portland we have a real cobbler, I bet I could take the straps and seat to him and he could steer me to a polish that would get the straps close.
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Old 06-22-20, 01:20 PM
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The VO toe straps are pretty good match to a honey B17. Also, they are IMO very good straps. Normally I dislike laminated straps, including the much lauded Binda Extra, but I found these VO ones very comfortable.

The are a little darker than a new B17, but Brooks Honey saddles will get quite a bit darker after a few months of use.

https://velo-orange.com/collections/...ther-toe-staps

Here's a pic of my PX10 with a brand new honey B17 and VO straps.


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Old 06-22-20, 01:35 PM
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It's OK if your toe straps don't match your saddle. I won't think any less of you.
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Old 06-22-20, 01:51 PM
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Basic Christophe toe straps do a brown color that is pretty "honey". I've used them before and they are a decent match.

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Old 06-22-20, 04:08 PM
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At least we can still get cheap straps... ​​​​​​$10.17 shipped:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Zefal-Chris...YAAOSwHgdeh4SC

There are some padded Somas on ebay, but they're brown, not honey. There are also some Avocets...

Someone in Belgium is selling some nice reproduction straps (Merckx, Campy, etc.) for $30+.
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Old 06-22-20, 04:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Salamandrine View Post
The VO toe straps are pretty good match to a honey B17. Also, they are IMO very good straps. Normally I dislike laminated straps, including the much lauded Binda Extra, but I found these VO ones very comfortable.

The are a little darker than a new B17, but Brooks Honey saddles will get quite a bit darker after a few months of use.

https://velo-orange.com/collections/...ther-toe-staps

Here's a pic of my PX10 with a brand new honey B17 and VO straps.


Have you ridden much on those straps? I bought a pair a while back (not VO brand, but the same strap) then decided not to use them because it looks like the buckle will tear that sexy stitching if you actually pull on the straps while riding. Got reminded the other day when I perused my old straps box for straps for a non-bike project. (Old toestraps are so useful! I never throw them away. Re-leather the ones with good buckles.
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Old 06-22-20, 04:46 PM
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You might try using neatsfoot oil on the straps. It is designed as an oil preservative and when you apply it, the leather will darken.
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Old 06-22-20, 04:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Doug Fattic View Post
You might try using neatsfoot oil on the straps. It is designed as an oil preservative and when you apply it, the leather will darken.
I was thinking shoe polish because he needs to get some red in there. Maybe a light colored red polish, then neatsfoot oil. Except I would much rather use SnoSeal. (Edit: or LL Bean grease. I haven't used the LL Bean stuff in several decades but it is part of their DNA so I am sure it is still available and unchanged.) Much the same darkening (more so with the Bean grease than SnoSeal) as neatsfoot oil and the straps remain far stronger and will stretch far less.

Last edited by 79pmooney; 06-22-20 at 04:54 PM.
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Old 06-22-20, 05:26 PM
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Thanks for all the replies! It's obviously not make or break, but I figure if I can match these parts, why not?

I had tried using some polishes: I have Kiwi brown, as well as RM Williams Chestnut polish, and RM Willaims conditioner. Definitely not enough red in any of them and all too dark of a brown. The MKS straps also didn't seem to absorb any of it well or consistently.

The Christophe straps seem pretty good, are they listed as brown or honey? bear_a_bug and SurferRosa both shared brown straps but they look like different browns.

Thank you for the photo, Salamandrine, those look like a pretty good match! I do like the uniform width of the MKS straps but looking at the VO ones more I'm not too bothered. I'm not big of obvious logos, so the VO being covered when strapped is nice.

Maybe I'll get straps from a couple of brands and see how they all compare since none of these are too expensive.
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Old 06-22-20, 05:32 PM
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Won't the honey brooks darken over time? I would ride the saddle for at least a thousand miles, if not more, until I tried matching the color.
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Old 06-22-20, 06:43 PM
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Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
Have you ridden much on those straps? I bought a pair a while back (not VO brand, but the same strap) then decided not to use them because it looks like the buckle will tear that sexy stitching if you actually pull on the straps while riding. Got reminded the other day when I perused my old straps box for straps for a non-bike project. (Old toestraps are so useful! I never throw them away. Re-leather the ones with good buckles.
I'd guess I put about 5000 miles on them before trading the to hazetyguy along with the pedals and some other stuff. They were in pretty good shape at that point still. I don't remember any stitching coming undone in that time. I am in the hills a lot and tend to keep them cinched. I liked the buckles on these.

Toe straps are useful. I used to have way too many of them around the house doing random things like keeping guitar cases closed. They are still the best way to carry a spare tubular tire also.
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Old 07-23-20, 01:50 PM
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Here's an update:

I ordered both the Velo Orange and Christophe straps in Honey. From what I've gathered, Christophe has discontinued the honey color, but there were multiple active eBay listings. They still have a brown option, but it's tan like the MKS straps.

The Velo Orange pair came first and matched well. They have a slightly more orange cast in their coloring than the B17. It's funny how, after a couple of years with the tan MKS straps, the matching honey looked odd (not in a bad way). The MKS straps are noticeably thicker.

The Christophe straps arrived today and are an even closer color match to the saddle! I'm sure, depending on the leather and dye, it could skew either way. Thickness is about the same as the MKS straps.

I'll take some comparison pictures to upload this weekend for posterity. I've got the Christophe set on right now and will probably stick with them for the time being. There was a set of honey Brooks toe straps on eBay when I was initially looking, but they were $100 BIN. Soooo, no.
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Old 07-25-20, 01:34 PM
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Here are the comparison photos. The first picture shows the range of colors in the Brooks saddle pretty well. I think the other two comparison photos illustrate the stronger orange/yellow hue of the VO honey versus the Christophe strap, which simply matches more accurately. When mounted, the distance between the saddle and toe straps makes either option appear to match the seat perfectly.








Brooks Saddle and Velo Orange strap


Brooks saddle and Christophe strap
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