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split vs gel

Old 05-04-03, 03:52 AM
  #1  
a-n-i
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split vs gel

hey guys,

i apologize in advance if this has been asked, but i couldn't find anything in the search...anyway, right now i have a saddle that neither has a cut out nor gel inserts; i don't feel any numbness while riding, but when i'm bent over and riding on the drops or hoods i do feel something a bit odd in the area between my backside and my testes, a sort of dull pain after 30 mins to an hour of riding.

anyway, i can't help worrying that this might be due to the compression of the penile artery (can't remember its exact name). i'm probably being paranoid, but even if i am i'd like to get a new saddle to prevent the pain and give me a more comfortable ride. my question is should i go for a split saddle, or one with gel inserts? to me the split saddle seems more sensible but it seems that the majority consensus is that this isn't true.

anyway i'd reeally appreciate some opinions on this, and i apologize for the long post...

thanks,
ani
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Old 05-04-03, 05:24 AM
  #2  
georgesnatcher
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I just got the Selle Italia Pro Link Max Flite Gel saddle. It is butt heaven as far as I am concerned. It has a cut out to alleviate numbness and pain in your crotch area.
This saddle should take care of both things you were talking about as it has gel and a cut out.
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Old 05-04-03, 10:58 AM
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danr
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I just got a combination gel/cutout about 2 months ago from REI, a Selle Royal. Heavy, but worth it. Considering my dimensions, I really needed something extra. So far, so good. I have gone 2+ hours with very minimal discomfort.
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Old 05-04-03, 11:40 AM
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Rich Clark
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Sometimes just a little adjustment in saddle position can be all that's needed. If you're being pulled forward onto the nose even a little then you'll get pressure on the perineum such as you describe. Or if the saddle is tilted up just a tiny bit too much.

Make sure positioning isn't the cause before you jump into the pit of saddle exchanges!

Sometimes a saddle that's too wide also tends to push you forward onto the nose as you pedal. Make sure the width of the sit-bone area actually matches the spacing of your own sit-bones.

If everything else checks out, a saddle with a cutout may help. They helped me -- I use the Selle Italia Max Trans Am on my bikes. I shy away from gel down the center of the saddle -- padding there would tend to put more pressure on the perineal nerve, not less.

But everybody's different.

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Old 05-04-03, 08:25 PM
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i cannot coment on split saddles because i have not used them since..

I use Vetta gel saddles.. I haven't used anything else.. I tend to buy the same model, or at least the closest match. I love gel saddles.. they give me minimal(bearable) discomfort even on long rides(2-3hrs).
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Old 05-05-03, 07:42 AM
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RonH
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I have a Terry Fly on both my road bike and my commuter. Two of my previous saddles had a split. I think the split helps a lot.
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Old 05-05-03, 12:23 PM
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I have a gel, and I'm pleased with it. I road a split for a test ride and the gel, and it was a toss up. I went with the gell soley for the reason it was lighter and on sale.

Preformance stores will let you try a saddle, and if you're not pleased, you can return it for another. Speak to the store.
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Old 05-05-03, 12:47 PM
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I am going throught the same decision-making process, but I just got off the phone with a LBS and they told me... "It's really hard to sell saddles, especially if they have been used." Therefore, I will not get to take one out to try it. The best they would do is put a saddle on a bike in the store and let me sit on it for a while.

I do triathlons and am looking at the Terry Men's Fly, the Koobi Tri or the San Marko Azoto. But I don't want to drop $100 and just be in the same boat or worse.

What about this idea.... I could order each one from an on-line store and then return the ones I don't like. I would lose the shipping, and as long as the merchant has a return policy that would allow that, wouldn't that work?
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Old 05-05-03, 01:54 PM
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Selle makes a tri specific saddle now. I just read that in Triathletemagazine.
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Old 05-05-03, 03:38 PM
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Koobi has a very generous 30 day return policy. If you aren't happy with your saddle send it back for a full refund. I'm sure the Brooks fans will chime in about the money back guarantee at wallbike.com.

I just ordered Koobi saddle and should be getting it tonight. I can't wait to try it out. My wife does triathlons and knows a few people who Koobi Tri and they seem to like them. I'll let you know how my new saddle works.
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Old 05-05-03, 05:31 PM
  #11  
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Originally posted by jlisota
. . . I'm sure the Brooks fans will chime in about the money back guarantee at wallbike.com. . . .
Well we would, but Brooks doesn't make a gel saddle,
and the only splits are in ancient mistreated ones.


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Old 05-06-03, 03:35 AM
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I' just fitted a Selle Italia SLK Gel Flow to my bike to replace the San MAcr Era Pro and it is a whole lot more comfortable.

If you can go with a Gel saddle with a split then do so. The gel eventaully loses it's 'memory' and moulds to the shape of your butt so they only get more comfortable as time passes.
The split I find is a welcome relief to Numbnutts.
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