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Conditioning period for a Brooks Saddle: How many hours or miles?

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Conditioning period for a Brooks Saddle: How many hours or miles?

Old 05-25-10, 11:30 AM
  #1  
tkambitsch
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Conditioning period for a Brooks Saddle: How many hours or miles?

I received my first Books Saddle (a Honey B.17 Special) last week. Following some advise from my LBS I warmed up the Proofide and was able to thickly cover every nook and cranny of the underside of saddle. The top doesn't seem to absorb much as it is so smooth and shiney.

My question: Brooks don't define how long of the 'breaking-in' period should be. It that 200 miles or or 600 miles? 20 hours or riding or 50? I've logged about 160 miles in the past five days. After making a small adjustment to move the nose up slightly it is already a joy to ride on. I wonder how often I should over-condition the saddle until it would be considered past its conditioning period?

FROM THE BROOKS WEB SITE:
"A new saddle should be treated with Brooks Proofide Leather Dressing to help to assist the ´┐Żbreaking-in´┐Ż process... Proofide needs to be applied to the underside of the saddle and in this case it should be left on. Apply very little Proofide on the top to the finished side of the leather. Allow the Proofide to permeate until dry and then polish off with a cloth to avoid getting it on your clothes... This Leather Dressing should be used several times during the ´┐Żbreaking-in´┐Ż period and every few months thereafter..."
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Old 05-25-10, 11:42 AM
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sojourn
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It varies.
My fat ass breaks them in quickly, if you're a lightweight, it may take longer. When it happens you'll know it!
I suggest at least 600-1000 miles before throwing in the towel (my Imperial yielded at 400 miles). That's my experience. You'll probably get all kinds of advice and opinions on this question.
Good luck!
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Old 05-25-10, 11:56 AM
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Spinz
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Standard width B17 seems to have a quicker breakin period. Couple of weeks of riding and you'll notice your sitbone impressions on the saddle. Comfort will increase tenfold the more you ride it. Break it in by riding it; don't get all crazy and apply proofide every week. That little tin should be all you need. One other thing, leave the tension screw alone. Lp
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Old 05-25-10, 12:14 PM
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calamarichris
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In addition to the variation in derriere sizes/masses, another variable that will affect the break-in time is the leather. I've gone through 5 Brookses and two of them broke in pretty quickly, two of them took a little longer, and one was still a cinder-block after nine months of taint misery. Leather is not a homogeneous material like synthetic gels or plastics. Some cows're tougher'n others.
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Old 05-25-10, 01:26 PM
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Mine are comfy out of the box.

They don't require a "break-in" at all.

Don't overdo it with the Proofide which is mostly beeswax.

You put some on already, put the can away.
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Old 05-25-10, 04:24 PM
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@TMB Thanks for advise. I too found my B.17 cumfy right out of the box. I won't worry about it. -tim
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Old 05-25-10, 05:17 PM
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Jay Andriot
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I've had 4 Brooks saddles, they are a bit hit or miss, but when they hit man are they good.
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Old 05-26-10, 06:32 AM
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For me ... it was 800 km or 3 weeks of cycling. Mine suddenly broke in 400 km into a 1000 km randonnee.

As for proofide, I put on a thin layer all over my saddle when I got it ... then again at about the 6 month mark ... then again about a year later. You don't have to go crazy with proofide or other things some may recommend. A teensy dab of proofide will do. I bought my saddle in 2004, and my container of proofide hardly looks like it has been used.
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Old 05-26-10, 06:48 AM
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Just ride it. If you have it adjusted it so it is comfortable now, let nature takes its course without additional Proofide or other treatments.

I have broken in two B17s, and am in the process of breaking in a titanium Swallow. The Swallow is proving a little more stubborn than the other two, but I have progressively felt an improvement in the comfort with each successive ride (200 to 300km each).
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