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Gravel saddle feedback

Old 05-24-22, 03:59 AM
  #1  
knersie
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Gravel saddle feedback

Greetings,

I've recently joined the gravel crowd, having recently bought an ibis Hakka MX.

The saddle which the custom builder put on the bike (Supacaz Scorch) is too firm for my sharp, narrow sit bones.

I'm a competitive cyclist, so more often that not, I settle onto the front of my saddle, when pushing. The problem with minimalist saddles, for me, occurs when I sit more upright, whether to rest, or climb ... and that's when my sit bones dig in. Since my new bike's geometry is more in the gravel ballpark, I'm likely to be more upright than I used to, esp compared to triathlons! I will be riding a mix of road and gravel, but probably more road for a while.

Given the above, I've narrowed down my choice to the following 3 saddles. I'd appreciate some feedback from folks who may either have tried or currently use them. Thanks.

- WTB SL8 Carbon (narrow)
- Sella Repente Artax GL
- Selle Italia X-LR TI316 Superflow

I'd also been considering the Specialized Phenom S-Works, in the same weight category, but I've already sold my left kidney to buy the bike and various other components. Anyone interested in an appendix?

Looking forward to some useful feedback, thanks!
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Old 05-24-22, 06:30 AM
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My preference has been Fizik - I love the ALIANTE. Nashbar always seemed to have these available 50% off back in the day.

If you want to sell a kidney or appendix, get one of these instead of the Specialized.
ANTARES VERSUS EVO R3 ADAPTIVE (the 3D printed thingy). If that isn't enough, higher end versions can cost an additional $150. ;-)
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Old 05-24-22, 08:34 AM
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knersie
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Thanks chas58, I'll review the Aliante as well. Please confirm that you also have narrow sit bones? My geometry isn't run-of-the mill

Holding back on further body parts sales, for now.
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Old 05-24-22, 02:30 PM
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if you like the shape of the aliante, consider a fabric scoop radius. Has built in flex in the shell compared to most of the fiziks I've owned that are relatively stiff. The channeled models of the fabric saddles are a bit stiffer similar to the VS/versus fizik equivalents.
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Old 05-24-22, 05:16 PM
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One of the most popular in the endurance crowd (and my favorite) is the Selle An Atomica.
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Old 05-25-22, 05:57 AM
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Originally Posted by knersie View Post
Thanks chas58, I'll review the Aliante as well. Please confirm that you also have narrow sit bones? My geometry isn't run-of-the mill

Holding back on further body parts sales, for now.
they have two sizes. I'm average height/weight and probably fit better on the large size for longer distances (and narrower when I'm doing a short crit or track session). I'm guessing something in the 130's would work for ya. FYI, the Arione is better if you are in more of a race position and/or like a narrow saddle.

Originally Posted by redlude97 View Post
if you like the shape of the aliante, consider a fabric scoop radius. Has built in flex in the shell compared to most of the fiziks I've owned that are relatively stiff. The channeled models of the fabric saddles are a bit stiffer similar to the VS/versus fizik equivalents.
​​​​​​​That is a good bet too - better price point to boot! ;-)
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Old 05-25-22, 10:09 AM
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I have narrow sitbones and always preferred the Selle Italia SLR...
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Old 05-25-22, 10:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Caliwild View Post
I have narrow sitbones and always preferred the Selle Italia SLR...
Thanks, I've looked it up. It's likely to be too short though. I currently find myself perched on the tip of my Supacaz Scorch when pushing hard, and it's 270mm in length, whereas the SLR is 248mm, so quite a difference. I guess the fit will have more to do with where the rails are and the eventual horizontal position of the saddle tip w.r.t the handlebars.
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Old 05-25-22, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by dwmckee View Post
One of the most popular in the endurance crowd (and my favorite) is the Selle An Atomica.
Wow, what an about turn on modern synthetic saddles! Thanks for the suggestion. I don't have the budget to tinker with saddles so different to what I've tried before. If only one could test, then buy ... this supply problem makes component buying/testing so expensive. Buy, ship, not suitable, ship back ...

When you speak of endurance, are you referring to easy cruising, or pushing hard (racing)? 200km racing?
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Old 05-26-22, 01:09 AM
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As is true for all saddle discussions, what I like has no bearing on what you like. The concept of a special saddle for gravel doesn't compute with me. I use the same saddle on all my bikes. It happens to be E3 Form (no longer made) and its successor Kontact. But I don't recommend them other to say, it's a little known brand and worth checking out. it's got a narrow nose and flat sitting surface, no cutout.
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Old 05-26-22, 06:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Camilo View Post
As is true for all saddle discussions, what I like has no bearing on what you like. The concept of a special saddle for gravel doesn't compute with me. I use the same saddle on all my bikes. It happens to be E3 Form (no longer made) and its successor Kontact. But I don't recommend them other to say, it's a little known brand and worth checking out. it's got a narrow nose and flat sitting surface, no cutout.
I had an Ergon like that, if you are looking. I loved it for the track where I was pulling high G forces and the flat surface was comfortable (they make road and gravel versions). Unfortunately pulling 2-3 G's consistently caused the thing to break (as it tends to with anything rated ~250lbs).
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Old 05-28-22, 02:08 PM
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I agree there is really no such thing as a gravel saddle, but the Berk Dila saddle on gravel works very well. Immediate feeling is like a suspension seatpost - the saddle eats up so much vibration that it’s hard to believe how comfortable it is. Also crazy light and expensive, but comfort is important!
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Old 05-30-22, 12:45 PM
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I find my gravel saddle preference to be the same as my pavement saddle preferences. No difference for.

MTB is a different for me.
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