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Old 07-23-16, 10:48 PM
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rperkins146
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Saddles

1. What saddles do you like or recommend?
2. What is the cost?


I have been shopping for a road bike for a month, LBS - 3 of them- in my area don't have anything in stock for me to ride (apparently a 6'4" 240lb rider is that uncommon in a city of 100,000). I have ridden a Defy and liked it. Just bought an XL 2011 Giant Defy 1 on ebay. A common gripe in reviews is the saddle, so if I don't like it I figure I will have some information ahead of time.
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Old 07-23-16, 10:58 PM
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I'm sorry, but I can't help you. Saddles are too personal, and what's good for one or many, may not be good for you. Conversely, you may love a saddle that others review poorly.

So, this is one of those decisions which you'll have to make flying by the seat of your pants.
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Old 07-23-16, 11:10 PM
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I kind of expected that. I may not have any issues with the saddle on the bike, we'll see. I have read in some larger cities that LBS will rent or let you try out a saddle prior to purchase, I plan on seeing what my options are if need be.


Another question:


I don't dislike the saddle on my hybrid, but I know my position will be different on the road bike, would the same saddle be an option or would position change it so much that it is altogether different.
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Old 07-24-16, 05:23 AM
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Originally Posted by rperkins146 View Post
1. What saddles do you like or recommend?
2. What is the cost?


I have been shopping for a road bike for a month, LBS - 3 of them- in my area don't have anything in stock for me to ride (apparently a 6'4" 240lb rider is that uncommon in a city of 100,000). I have ridden a Defy and liked it. Just bought an XL 2011 Giant Defy 1 on ebay. A common gripe in reviews is the saddle, so if I don't like it I figure I will have some information ahead of time.
What is the best saddle is a question without an answer. Many LBS have saddles that they can loan you until you find one that agrees with your behind. It'll take a few days, maybe even a few weeks of cycling to find out.
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Old 07-24-16, 05:54 AM
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Originally Posted by rperkins146 View Post
I don't dislike the saddle on my hybrid, but I know my position will be different on the road bike, would the same saddle be an option or would position change it so much that it is altogether different.
I can say for me, yes. I've bought several saddles for my road bike that weren't comfortable, one of which ended up on my MTB and is wonderful there. It's a Giant Connect saddle, I've ridden on it up to 4 hours and have no pain or numbness but the one time I tried it on my road bike it was horrible. The strange thing is that the saddle I did end up liking on my road bike is sized and shaped about the same as the Giant saddle, go figure.
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Old 07-24-16, 06:50 PM
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I know this doesn't help... but I don't don't the same saddle on all my bikes. Each bike has a different make and model. And they aren't even really the same. So... who knows what you'll like. It's all very personal. Good luck!

And before the Brooks fans get in here.... I want to be the first to say - "Brooks! You need a Brooks saddle!" (Just kidding.... I love love love my Brooks, but there are many other wonderful saddles, and the Brooks isn't for everyone. I only have Brooks on 25% of my bikes.... soon to be 40%)
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Old 07-25-16, 09:28 AM
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Bike Saddles

I made the mistake of just buying a well recommended saddle off of Amazon, and I could not ever get it adjusted right. I went in for another fitting at my LBS, and he told me that the saddle was completely wrong for me and promptly sold me a much more expensive saddle than the one I bought off of Amazon. The good news is that my LBS has a 30 day swap out / return policy (and the fitting was free because I bought a saddle from him). Maybe you could ask around and a shop near you will have a similar policy.
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Old 07-25-16, 09:29 AM
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Originally Posted by rperkins146 View Post
I kind of expected that. I may not have any issues with the saddle on the bike, we'll see. I have read in some larger cities that LBS will rent or let you try out a saddle prior to purchase, I plan on seeing what my options are if need be.
You don't need to be in a big city for that -- any good lbs should help you out man.
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Old 07-25-16, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by rperkins146 View Post
1. What saddles do you like or recommend?
2. What is the cost?


I have been shopping for a road bike for a month, LBS - 3 of them- in my area don't have anything in stock for me to ride (apparently a 6'4" 240lb rider is that uncommon in a city of 100,000). I have ridden a Defy and liked it. Just bought an XL 2011 Giant Defy 1 on ebay. A common gripe in reviews is the saddle, so if I don't like it I figure I will have some information ahead of time.

I am sitting at 6'0 and about 45 lbs heavier than you in a city of about the same size and had no issues finding a saddle. I would ride the one on your bike and make sure you get some bike specific clothes for sure. In terms of price, I spent 130 and it was one of the best purchases I have ever made.
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Old 07-26-16, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
I'm sorry, but I can't help you. Saddles are too personal, and what's good for one or many, may not be good for you. Conversely, you may love a saddle that others review poorly.

So, this is one of those decisions which you'll have to make flying by the seat of your pants.
^ This has been my experience.

It's too subjective and personal. The butt bones differ from person to person, as does preference and riding position.

I haven't had too many bikes in the past 30yrs, but I've found a handful that ride well enough. A couple of mid-to-larger Brooks saddles I've sad in have felt good. Current Selle SMP Martin Touring feels grand. All far larger than any local bike shop ever had in stock, either as a "loaner" or otherwise. My solution has been: try 'em as I find 'em, and if cannot find them then purchase and try it; if doesn't work, sell it and continue the search. Have yet to find a better method, sadly, as it's so subjective.
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Old 07-26-16, 12:45 PM
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I used the saddle demo program at my local bike shop, (bike bling) tired 3 saddles out over the course of a couple months. All worked but the Kurve was OMG i can ride forever type feeling. The others seemed to give me problems around 60-70 miles (4hrs or so) didn't matter what bibs I used.

main road bike has FIZIK KURVE CHAMELEON SADDLE
Got it for about $200 on a blk friday sale (yes it's expensive, but it gets used every ride)

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Old 07-26-16, 04:47 PM
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Originally Posted by rperkins146 View Post
1. What saddles do you like or recommend?
2. What is the cost?


I have been shopping for a road bike for a month, LBS - 3 of them- in my area don't have anything in stock for me to ride (apparently a 6'4" 240lb rider is that uncommon in a city of 100,000). I have ridden a Defy and liked it. Just bought an XL 2011 Giant Defy 1 on ebay. A common gripe in reviews is the saddle, so if I don't like it I figure I will have some information ahead of time.
Specialized shops normally have a device to measure how far apart your sit bones are. That would be a good starting point to figure out which range of saddles should fit you.

A couple of things to remember.

1. Don't get a saddle that is too soft. Your sit bones will sink into the padding, and that will cause pressure on parts that don't need to have pressure on them.

2. Ride the saddle that came with the bike for as long as possible. At least that way you can tell your LBS how long you can ride before the saddle becomes uncomfortable, and any other issues. I had an issue with numbness, so I got a saddle with a large cutout. If you do have issues with numbness, go to the LBS as soon as possible to get a new saddle. Pain in the sit bones is normal, numbness is not.

3. Related to #1. If you aren't already, get some cycling shorts/bibs. The chamois is pretty much all the padding that you need.

4. If your sit bones are sore, that is normal. It may take a little bit of time to get used to the seat, but by gradually going longer distances, you'll get used to it. I was joking with some people on a 100K that I did recently, that the organizers may have done too good of a job with the route, and that I wished there were a few more stop signs, so that I could stop and get off the seat more. They agreed that their legs were handling the distance better than their butts were. And when you do go long distances, either stop occasionally or stand up to give your butt a little bit of a break.

By the way, I got a Selle SMP Pro. I got a bit of a deal on it, because I knew the people at the LBS, and it had been put in the wrong place, under the wrong price.

GH
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Old 07-26-16, 09:40 PM
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Ride it first

Ride the bike. After a hundred miles or so you should be able to form your own opinion. Amazon comments are useful for many things, but saddle comfort is not one of them.
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Old 07-27-16, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by ChuckD6421 View Post
Ride the bike. After a hundred miles or so you should be able to form your own opinion. Amazon comments are useful for many things, but saddle comfort is not one of them.
Indeed. My most favored saddle is reviewed on Amazon thusly:

"There is not enough cushion on the seat, if you are riding your bike for 40 miles or more, this is not the seat for you."

The longest ride I've done on that saddle so far is 113 miles, and I've found it to be just great.
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Old 07-31-16, 08:24 AM
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Get a Brooks you will not be disappointed..
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Old 07-31-16, 08:26 AM
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Brooks Saddles don't work for every rider.
Mine didn't work
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Old 07-31-16, 08:55 AM
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depends on your budget....

cheap but very good:.... Charge Spoon:


waterproof and very comfy for long distance: ... Brooks Cambium C17 Carved:



expensive and very good, but needs to be covered in the wet: ... Gilles Berthoud Aravis:
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Old 07-31-16, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by dim View Post
depends on your budget....

cheap but very good:.... Charge Spoon:
I put one of these on my gravel bike. Great saddle for the cost.
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Old 08-01-16, 09:32 AM
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I use a cheap Bell saddle that's wider than standard stock saddles and filled with memory foam. It's quite comfortable on long rides, I'm sure much better than the stock saddle which came with my bike.
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Old 08-01-16, 12:01 PM
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Find a specialized dealer near you and try out their saddles. They should have a demo program (actually, the one I used also demoed fizik saddles, so that was handy).

In order to properly evaluate a saddle, you need to spend some time on it - I doubt you'll know if the saddle is RIGHT for you after 5 miles but you may very well know if it's wrong. I went through about 5 before I found one I really liked (Specialized Romin Evo Pro... about $120 retail). I'm currently riding on a Selle Italia SLR Max Flow or some such, which was stupid expensive but I also really like it.

We went on a bike tour in Italy last year and I packed my (spare) saddle, which got funny looks from my wife but after 18 miles on THEIR saddle day 1 I was only too happy to swap saddles and ride my own. Made all the difference in the world.
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Old 08-02-16, 04:07 PM
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Originally Posted by ColaJacket View Post
Specialized shops normally have a device to measure how far apart your sit bones are. That would be a good starting point to figure out which range of saddles should fit you.
I have a device for that, it's called my fingers. C'mere and bend over.

Or better yet, sit naked on a towel, look for the sit-bone indentations and measure the center-to-center distance.
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Old 08-03-16, 07:56 AM
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
I have a device for that, it's called my fingers. C'mere and bend over.

Or better yet, sit naked on a towel, look for the sit-bone indentations and measure the center-to-center distance.
Memory foam pillow did it for me. Not that it made much difference, I still just ride the same old $15-30 saddles.
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Old 08-03-16, 08:49 AM
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
I have a device for that, it's called my fingers. C'mere and bend over.

Or better yet, sit naked on a towel, look for the sit-bone indentations and measure the center-to-center distance.
I think you have to add something (some number of mm) to that measurement, IIRC. Youtube is your friend on this one.
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Old 09-03-16, 12:42 PM
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I'm 240 lbs (down from 265) and 6'3". 64 years old -- which is certainly a factor. 2014 Giant Defy Advanced 1. So we're not far apart, except maybe in age.

I've been through LOTS of saddles, looking for the Holy Grail. Clue: it doesn't exist. Don't believe anyone who says it does, or that "the saddle disappeared beneath" them.

That being said, there are better and worse saddles. Yes, it is a matter of your anatomy. Yes, you have to find what works for you. And yes, it is helpful to listen to what has worked for others.

But the biggest yes is making sure you have a good bike fit. The problem is that you can spend a lot of money and still not get one. My experience is that a bike fit is a good place to start, but then you have to make adjustments from there. And, your fit will change as you lose weight, get stronger, and get more flexible.

All that being said, here's my list of saddles and experiences. Emphasis MY. YMMV.

Specialized Phenom: painful
Bontrager Affinity RL: wonderful on my Trek 2.3, awful on my Giant Defy
Fizik Aliante gamma: came stock on the Giant. Good at first, but got too soft. After an hour, I felt pressure in perineum
Fizik Aliante Versus carbon braided: rode for 2 years. Great at first, but also got too soft
Selle Italia Superflow SLR: not bad, but not significantly better that the Aliante Versus
Selle SMP Pro: interesting, but after an hour I felt as though I were riding on 2 rails. Transfers pressure from ischial tuberosities to ischial rami.
Brooks Cambium C17: hard, and unlike the B17, it will never get any better. BUT, I loved the width.
Specialized Romin Evo Expert Gel, 168mm: This may be the one. All the width of the Brooks, with a little padding and a perineal cutout to boot. And, like the Brooks, it is best set (for me) level nose to tail, which leaves the nose appear a little elevated. This takes pressure off the hands (an issue I've had for years) and settles my tail back into the "hammock" of the saddle.

Specialized is the only saddle maker -- I believe -- who makes a non-leather road bike saddle the same width as the Brooks saddles that everyone loves so much. For many of us big people, the width is crucial. But B17s are designed (read the Brooks literature) for people riding upright on their bikes, as I did on my wonderful 1962 Hercules "English racer" 3 speed. As soon as you lean forward to get on the hoods -- much less the drops -- of a modern road bike, you transfer your weight from the ischial tuberosities to the ischial rami. Then a different part of the saddle becomes crucial, and many of us find a channel or a cutout helpful in relieving pressure.

The interesting thing for me about the Romin is that I find I'm riding lower on the bars than with any previous saddle. I'm even comfortable riding in the drops for extended periods of time for the first time. I think that's because the Romin is rotating my hips forward in a way the other saddles didn't. That's a good thing.

I'm still playing a little with the position of the Romin. But after about 100 miles so far, it feels pretty amazing.

By the way, many people swear by the Specialized Toupe, which is flatter front to back, has a cutout, and is also available in 168mm. And Specialized has a new saddle, the Power, which comes in 168mm and has a much shorter nose, making riding forward even easier. The owner of the LBS where I bought my Romin says the Power is the best saddle he's ever ridden.

Good luck!

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Old 09-03-16, 01:17 PM
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I am no expert but I can tell you my experience. My previous bike a was super upright townie. The stock saddle was wide and padded. At 3-4 miles it sucked for me. I got a Brooks B17s. The first time I ride 3-5 miles I was a bit sore. But it wasn't as annoying as the padded one. Then it was fine, I never ride far. But ocassionally bumpy roads were jarring. Then I read the Internet. And the consensus was sprung saddle for an upright bike.

I got a new bike that was less upright, but still upright. I got the B67s. Has springs and is wider than the b17. In the new bike my bars were a little above my saddle (maybe 1 inch). It was generally fine after some tweaks, I started riding further. Mostly good, but I still needed a little break after 30-40 minutes.

Then my saddle time decreased. New job meant no more daily ride to the train. Then it was rainy season. And then I hurt my knee. So I didn't ride at all for 2-3 months while it was healing. When I finally got back on my bike this summer omg my saddle sucked. It was horrible. Chaffing. . I was debating going back to the narrower b17 and saying bye bye to the springs. It was tricky because I still had lingering knee problems. And I kept accidentally going on the longest rides I had ever done. So it could have been the saddle, or me just being out of practice.

I have been trying to fit more rides in. And play around with my positioning. A few weeks ago I lowered my bars a bit, now the saddle is just about even. But it still wasn't totally right. I couldn't get a good wrist angle. Then I changed the saddle angle a bit. That was a bit better.

Now I have swapped the bars and pedals (unrelated). And I upped the saddle some because I was having a bit of knee pain. And it felt wrong with the new pedals (Which seems like an artifact of the spring knee issue). So that was basically this week for those last two changes. I rode for about 8 miles today, and things mostly feel great. No knee pain. Saddle was mostly good, but I may want to change the angle a little bit. Uncertain. My sit bones have been fine lately.

This was a long winded way to say the smallest of changes impact saddle comfort. So play around with the saddle you have. Setback. Handlebar angle. See when or if you have discomfort in certain conditions. Maybe the saddle you hav is great.

The general rule of thumb is saddle width should increase as your bars go higher in relation to your saddle. If your bars are even-ish with your saddle you can go medium or wide.
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