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Saddle Position

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Saddle Position

Old 01-14-21, 02:52 PM
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Saddle Position

Hi All, I unexpectedly bought 2 bikes last year. A Hybrid and a Road Bike. On both bikes the saddles were pretty much trashed and one saddle I knew from experience would not work for me so I replaced both saddles and am doing OK.

I have a Specialized Phenom Saddle on my Hybrid and a Specialized Riva on my Road Bike. Both saddles are 143mm. I put the saddles on my bikes in the order that I bought the bikes and had the saddles. The Phenom saddle on my Hybrid has a minimum of padding and the Riva saddle on my Road Bike has noticeable padding. Not tons of padding but noticeable. I am going to change the saddles around and switch the Phenom onto my Road Bike and the Riva onto my Hybrid and I want to try to get the fore and aft position as right as I can on the first try.

Is it better to measure from the handlebar to the nose of the saddle or is it better to measure from the handlebar to the part of the saddle where my sit bones rest? The saddles are different lengths and I am thinking if I measure handle bar to saddle nose that will make the location where my sit bones rest be off but I want to get input from the group here so what does everyone think? Comment, opinions, thoughts? Thanks everyone.
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Old 01-14-21, 03:07 PM
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I always measure to where I think my sit bones are on the saddle. The nose will be fine if the saddle are the same profile. But perhaps the rear of the saddle might be more reliable place to measure to as the difference from where my sit bones are to the rear is probably more consistent than to the nose of various saddle profiles.

Also, when you say to the handle bars, that works for a flat bar, but on anything else, I'd measure where you actually keep your hands. For those that normally keep their hands on the horizontal part of a drop bar, then something is set up wrong or the frame is the wrong size.
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Old 01-14-21, 04:09 PM
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Iride01 Thanks for weighing in. Your comment about the rear of the saddle makes sense so I will give that a try when I switch the saddles. Also I can see where you would make your comment about handlebars. I am not sure I necessarily agree with you but what you wrote does make sense. For me I spend 96% of my time riding on the brake hoods on my Road Bike so I think I will make my measurement to the area where the brifter meets the handlebar. My Hybrid has a flat bar so that is not as critical.

Thanks again for your thoughts and I hope your 2001 is a better year for you than 2020 was.
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Old 01-14-21, 07:37 PM
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Saddle fore and aft adjustment should be approximated around KOPS or COG (Steve Hogg's with your preferred riding posture) method which is independent of the handlebar position.

If you think the handlebar position is off, you should adjust it by changing the stem length/rise and headset spacers, not the saddle fore and aft.
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Old 01-14-21, 08:27 PM
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Much better than measuring bars to seat is to measure bottom bracket to seat. For seat position - you want the right relationship between the pivot at your hip and the pedal circle. Then adjust your handlebars to work. Next bike - duplicate the vertical and horizontal distances for both the seat and handlebars to the bottom bracket.

I put a piece of tape midway along the seat and measure both along the seat tube and horizontally from bottom bracket to the tape at the saddle centerline. (This is approximate. Different seats put my hips in different places. I ride and bring the wrench(es) to dial it in. For height, I look at (and feel) knee bend.)
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Old 01-15-21, 12:48 PM
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I never measure saddle fore-and-aft position to transfer to a different saddle on a different bike. Or even the same saddle on a different bike. Positions will be different if the bikes are different and thus I use the balance method to determine saddle position on each bike: I should be able to briefly remove my hands from the bars while pedaling without sliding forward on the saddle. After I have the correct saddle position, I adjust reach with the stem if necessary and then check balance again.
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