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question re: women's saddles/frames

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question re: women's saddles/frames

Old 04-26-03, 02:21 AM
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Merckxrider
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question re: women's saddles/frames

I'm going to set my wife up with a new road bike. Just wondering, what do you ladies use for a saddle? I've noticed that there are wider seats available for the female torso. Do any of you gals use the standard, narrow seats anyhow? Also, if any guys have advice on this subject (what your ladyfriend's use), please chime in as well. Lastly, what's up with a sloping top-tube? What's the point of it (I've seen a lot of women riding this frame-style.) Thanks for any input.

Steve
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Old 04-26-03, 05:49 AM
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The original purpose of the sloping top tube was to allow clearance for a long skirt. These days, it provides extra clearance for those of us who are short or not as athletic getting on the bike. ) If your wife is young, limber and tall, she may as well go with a diamond frame.

As for seats, I have a Selle Italia women's Octavia, and find it a very comfortable seat.
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Old 04-26-03, 06:52 AM
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Hi,
the old style women's frame is an inferior design. The slope weakens the frame. On that style of frame the top tube drops low on the seat tube. The new style compact frame there is a slope, but the top tube is attached a couple inches down. Compact frames are fine, and quite handy for short legs.My wife uses one of the more expensive Terry saddles. My Sis uses a WTB Speed She Ti. The hi end Terry saddles are narrow, and Speed She is moderately wide. All depends on what feels comfy; and the way you find that out is by trying it. It would help to know what sort of riding you plan on doing, and how tall she is.

Last edited by late; 04-26-03 at 07:36 AM.
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Old 04-26-03, 07:14 AM
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MichaelW
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Women differ to men in the proportion of leg length to torso+ arms, so may need a bike with a different ratio of length to height. There is no one shape which fits all women , but "women specific design" (WSD) bikes usually have a shorter top tube than the equiv male bike.
By sloping top tube do you mean the old ladies step-through design, or the modern compact road frame style (like Giant TCR).
For women riders, the compact frame design gives a comfortable standover clearance, and permits the head-tube to be quite long, so the bars can be set higher than they might be on a guys bike.
Smaller bikes for male or female should come with smaller components. Small cranks, narrrow bars etc are available, but its quite rare to find them all fitted to give a nicely proportioned bike.
For saddles, Terry make some good ones.
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Old 04-26-03, 10:30 AM
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I use men's saddles - I'm pretty thin and have narrow hips and find them to be much more comfortable than women's saddles. Right now I use a men's Selle Italia Trans Am.
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Old 04-26-03, 11:23 AM
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My wife uses a Wylder Julianna saddle on her Calfee and her stoker position on our tandem.
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Old 04-26-03, 12:33 PM
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by MichaelW
[B]Women differ to men in the proportion of leg length to torso+ arms, so may need a bike with a different ratio of length to height. There is no one shape which fits all women , but "women specific design" (WSD) bikes usually have a shorter top tube than the equiv male bike.

By sloping top tube do you mean the old ladies step-through design, or the modern compact road frame style (like Giant TCR).

Hi, Yes I mean the new technology. I wouldn't dream of putting her on the old fashioned girl's frame. It's amazing that a skirt dictated how a bike frame was to be built! Thanks for all the saddle info. etc... more to consider than I realized.

Steve
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Old 04-26-03, 10:32 PM
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Merckxrider-you might want to check out the Serfas Arroyo and Vado for women. Our shop has had excellent luck with them.
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Old 04-27-03, 08:32 AM
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Originally posted by sistinas
I use men's saddles - I'm pretty thin and have narrow hips and find them to be much more comfortable than women's saddles. Right now I use a men's Selle Italia Trans Am.
I use this same saddle even though I have wider hip bones. For me most women's saddles are too wide and cushy, but I've been riding for awhile and have probably developed some sort of pain immunity. I think the tendency when first starting out is to go for the lazy-boy approach but then start carving it down.
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Old 04-27-03, 11:20 AM
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Old 04-27-03, 04:19 PM
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I use the Wylder Julianna too and I love it! Tried the Terry Butterfly and it was nothing but torture. Too wide for me. I also like the Avocet Air O2.
Kathi
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Old 04-28-03, 03:38 AM
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Be aware with compact frames that they are designed for greater standover than traditional bikes (5-6" of space, rather than 1-2"). There is no change in the length, though. If you try to fit a compact frame using the clearance guidelines for trad frames, the rider will have no problem finding the pedals and mounting the saddles, but the bars will be way to distant.
Fit the bike acording to the top-tube length.
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