Brooks B17 saddle questions

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Frank Riley, Feb 16, 2003.

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  1. Frank Riley

    Frank Riley Guest

    What is the difference between the narrow version and the regular version? Where is it narrower at
    (front/back)?

    What would be a better choice for a 3 week long tour (8-12 hours in the saddle per day)? I have
    problems with chafing, would the narrow version be better?

    My bars are about 1 inch below saddle height. Would a Brooks still be comfortable?

    I'm concerned about rain. Since this will be cross country, I'm concerned about the saddle getting
    wet. How do you other tourers handle this?
     
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  2. On Sun, 16 Feb 2003 12:34:10 -0500, Frank Riley wrote:

    > What is the difference between the narrow version and the regular version? Where is it narrower at
    > (front/back)?

    at the back

    >
    > What would be a better choice for a 3 week long tour (8-12 hours in the saddle per day)? I have
    > problems with chafing, would the narrow version be better?

    Depends on your anatomy. Incidentlly, I had chafing problems for years that turned out to be my
    saddle being a few mm too high. I certainly didn't think it was too high, but I was squirming just
    enough to cause sores.

    > My bars are about 1 inch below saddle height. Would a Brooks still be comfortable?

    Assuming it's comfortable now, no reason why not. The Brooks Pro used to be the #1 racing saddle
    back 30 years ago, and racers did have their handlebars that much lower than saddle then.

    >
    > I'm concerned about rain. Since this will be cross country, I'm concerned about the saddle getting
    > wet. How do you other tourers handle this?

    I use a combination of the Carracide B17 bonnet and under it, a plastic Saran QuickCover. The
    plastic layer is totally waterproof, unlike the Brooks cover, but the Brooks cover completely
    shields the plastic from rubbing/tearing. I also have fenders, which protect against spray from
    underneath.
     
  3. I chose the B-66 Champion over the standard B-66 because it was a bit narrower (didn't want to risk
    chafing the inside of my thighs), and 'cuz it's a sprung saddle. Very comfortable! And I used
    Proofide underneath to help protect from water damage (didn't have fenders at the time, but I do
    now). I've got like 250 km on it now, and I'll never go back to any other saddle again. My bars are
    set at nearly the same height as my saddle, and it's quite comfortable. I'm planning on a tour this
    summer (length undetermined at this time, but it'll be several months long), and was wondering about
    some type of cover for rain protection (mentioned by the other poster...thanx for the tip!).
     
  4. Wayne T

    Wayne T Guest

    "Steve Palincsar" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > On Sun, 16 Feb 2003 12:34:10 -0500, Frank Riley wrote:
    >
    > > What is the difference between the narrow version and the regular version? Where is it narrower
    > > at (front/back)?
    >
    > at the back
    >
    > >
    > > What would be a better choice for a 3 week long tour (8-12 hours in the saddle per day)? I have
    > > problems with chafing, would the narrow version be better?
    >
    > Depends on your anatomy. Incidentlly, I had chafing problems for years that turned out to be my
    > saddle being a few mm too high. I certainly didn't think it was too high, but I was squirming just
    > enough to cause sores.
    >
    > > My bars are about 1 inch below saddle height. Would a Brooks still be comfortable?
    >
    > Assuming it's comfortable now, no reason why not. The Brooks Pro used to be the #1 racing saddle
    > back 30 years ago, and racers did have their handlebars that much lower than saddle then.
    >
    > >
    > > I'm concerned about rain. Since this will be cross country, I'm concerned about the saddle
    > > getting wet. How do you other tourers handle this?
    >
    > I use a combination of the Carracide B17 bonnet and under it, a plastic Saran QuickCover.

    Where did you get the above covers? Also, do you use anything on your seat that helps to
    waterproof it?

    The plastic layer is totally waterproof, unlike the
    > Brooks cover, but the Brooks cover completely shields the plastic from rubbing/tearing. I also
    > have fenders, which protect against spray from underneath.
     
  5. I have always figured that while I'm riding the bike my butt covers the saddle and keeps the rain
    off. If I have to leave the bike sitting in the rain I put a lastic cover over it (like the shower
    caps that are usually supplied in motel rooms). My fenders protect the underside and I hardly ever
    get up off the saddle while riding. Of course YBMBSTM (Your Butt May Be Smaller Than Mine).

    Bob Taylor
     
  6. x

    x Guest

    RE/
    >I'm concerned about rain. Since this will be cross country, I'm concerned about the saddle getting
    >wet. How do you other tourers handle this?

    I tried plastic shower caps, but they didn't work out.

    My current means is a 20" stuff bag from REI. Fits nicely over the saddle and I tie it off around
    the seatpost.

    For me, riding in the mud and rain, an additional benefit is that it keeps the glurge off of the
    little wedge pack that I keep my tube/patches/tools in under the saddle.

    I've done three 2-3 hour rides in the rain on it. Seems to be working so far. I guess the real
    question is how long the coating on the inside of the pack cloth holds up.
    -----------------------
    PeteCresswell
     
  7. I live in Western Oregon and ride in the rain. As long as I'm sitting on it, it is dry. When I leave
    the bike I put a plastic bag over it. I remove the bag when I ride again. Proofhide is probably good
    enough if you are sitting on it (and have fenders).

    --
    Alan C. Acock [email protected] [email protected] http://www.orst.edu/dept/hdfs/acock/ "(Pete
    Cresswell)" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > RE/
    > >I'm concerned about rain. Since this will be cross country, I'm concerned about the saddle
    > >getting wet. How do you other tourers handle this?
    >
    > I tried plastic shower caps, but they didn't work out.
    >
    > My current means is a 20" stuff bag from REI. Fits nicely over the
    saddle and
    > I tie it off around the seatpost.
    >
    > For me, riding in the mud and rain, an additional benefit is that it keeps
    the
    > glurge off of the little wedge pack that I keep my tube/patches/tools in
    under
    > the saddle.
    >
    > I've done three 2-3 hour rides in the rain on it. Seems to be working so
    far.
    > I guess the real question is how long the coating on the inside of the
    pack
    > cloth holds up.
    > -----------------------
    > PeteCresswell
     
  8. Wayne T

    Wayne T Guest

    "Robert Taylor" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > I have always figured that while I'm riding the bike my butt covers the saddle and keeps the
    > rain off.

    That's what I thought. However, when I recently got caught in the rain I later found that my Ideale
    leather saddle became warped. Maybe got wet from underneath because I don't have a fender but I do
    have a rear rack with a piece of fiber board covering it. I had just put it on and had failed to
    treat it with anything. So, I blame myself. Shame, because I like the Ideale saddles better than the
    brooks. However, my wife had a 20 year old Brooks and I noticed no damage to her seat. So maybe the
    Brooks is a better saddle.

    If I have to leave the bike sitting in
    > the rain I put a lastic cover over it (like the shower caps that are usually supplied in motel
    > rooms). My fenders protect the underside and I hardly ever get up off the saddle while riding. Of
    > course YBMBSTM (Your Butt May Be Smaller Than Mine).
    >
    > Bob Taylor
     
  9. Tim McNamara

    Tim McNamara Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    "Alan C. Acock" <[email protected]> wrote:

    > I live in Western Oregon and ride in the rain. As long as I'm sitting on it, it is dry. When I
    > leave the bike I put a plastic bag over it. I remove the bag when I ride again. Proofhide is
    > probably good enough if you are sitting on it (and have fenders).

    Fenders are the key if you're going to ride with a Brooks in inclement weather. If you want to ride
    without fenders (or they won't fit on your bike), you're better off with a plastic saddle. Or only
    ride when it's sunny.
     
  10. Frank Riley <[email protected]> wrote:
    >What is the difference between the narrow version and the regular version? Where is it narrower at
    >(front/back)?

    The rear.

    >What would be a better choice for a 3 week long tour (8-12 hours in the saddle per day)?

    That depends on the size of your hips and arse.

    >My bars are about 1 inch below saddle height. Would a Brooks still be comfortable?

    Everyone used to ride leather saddles; I don't see why not.

    >I'm concerned about rain. Since this will be cross country, I'm concerned about the saddle getting
    >wet. How do you other tourers handle this?

    I think the idea that a leather saddle cannot get wet at all is daft - it is obvious that on a hot
    day it is exposed to a quantity of sweat. It shouldn't be allowed to get sodden, but since you will
    be sitting on it it won't.
    --
    David Damerell <[email protected]> flcl?
     
  11. Smokey

    Smokey Guest

    Frank Riley <[email protected]> wrote in message news:<[email protected]>...
    > What is the difference between the narrow version and the regular version? Where is it narrower at
    > (front/back)?
    >
    > What would be a better choice for a 3 week long tour (8-12 hours in the saddle per day)? I have
    > problems with chafing, would the narrow version be better?
    >
    > My bars are about 1 inch below saddle height. Would a Brooks still be comfortable?
    >
    > I'm concerned about rain. Since this will be cross country, I'm concerned about the saddle getting
    > wet. How do you other tourers handle this?

    the wide B17 would be your best bet for a long tour. use a SMALL amount of proofhide on the saddle.
    a dab the size of your fingernail is about right. rub it in well. you can get covers from rivendell
    cycles and fenders would be a very good idea. my brooks is the best saddle i've used, i wouldn't
    consider another one. i run my bars level with the saddle, but it should be fine if yours are a
    little lower. for local rides of 30 miles or less, i seldom bother with bicycle shorts. they aren't
    needed with a brooks. smokey
     
  12. On Sun, 16 Feb 2003 15:32:06 -0500, Wayne T wrote:

    >> I use a combination of the Carracide B17 bonnet and under it, a plastic Saran QuickCover.
    >
    > Where did you get the above covers? Also, do you use anything on your seat that helps to
    > waterproof it?

    You get the Quickcover in supermarkets. It's great for covering bowls for refrigeration, since it
    adapts to all sorts of odd shapes and fits tight no matter what. They come in sizes. I think the one
    I'm using is medium. I found it in my kitchen. (One day last year, they were giving them away in
    front of the building where I work; I brought a few home and my wife loved them. She buys them now
    and uses them a lot.)

    The B.17 Bonnet I got from Rivendell.

    I use Proofide on Brooks saddles.
     
  13. Joe Nordic

    Joe Nordic Guest

    ONLY if it fits you. It did not work for me. No one can tell you that a particular saddle is best
    for you. You may need to try several before finding one you really like. For me it has been the
    Terry Fly.

    Joe

    > the wide B17 would be your best bet for a long tour. use a SMALL
    .....
    > smokey
     
  14. Jedharrison

    Jedharrison Guest

    It surprises me that the other posts haven't mentioned how I protect my Brooks in the rain . . . .a
    common plastic bag from the market (the ubiquitous kind with the integral "handles"). I always seem
    to have them on hand from my shopping while touring, they form well to the saddle contours, and the
    "handles" tie neatly and tightly around the seatpin sealing the bottom from spray. Easily removed
    when the weather clears, and recycled again.

    Frank Riley wrote:

    >What is the difference between the narrow version and the regular version? Where is it narrower at
    >(front/back)?
    >
    >What would be a better choice for a 3 week long tour (8-12 hours in the saddle per day)? I have
    >problems with chafing, would the narrow version be better?
    >
    >My bars are about 1 inch below saddle height. Would a Brooks still be comfortable?
    >
    >I'm concerned about rain. Since this will be cross country, I'm concerned about the saddle getting
    >wet. How do you other tourers handle this?
     
  15. Baka Dasai

    Baka Dasai Guest

    On Mon, 17 Feb 2003 03:17:45 GMT, Alan C. Acock said (and I quote):
    > I live in Western Oregon and ride in the rain. As long as I'm sitting on it, it is dry. When I
    > leave the bike I put a plastic bag over it. I remove the bag when I ride again. Proofhide is
    > probably good enough if you are sitting on it (and have fenders).

    Heavy rain while standing at at traffic lights would mean the saddle would get very wet. These are
    conditions I face regularly every summer.

    How feasible/comfortable is it to ride with a plastic bag over the Brooks?
    --
    Baka Dasai When I want your opinion I will beat it out of you.
     
  16. Tim McNamara

    Tim McNamara Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, Baka Dasai
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Heavy rain while standing at at traffic lights would mean the saddle would get very wet. These are
    > conditions I face regularly every summer.

    Stay seated. :)

    > How feasible/comfortable is it to ride with a plastic bag over the Brooks?

    It's fine. Almost unnoticeable in my experience and does keep the saddle quite dry, so long as you
    have some way to close the bag around the seatpost.
     
  17. >Heavy rain while standing at at traffic lights would mean the saddle would get very wet. These are
    >conditions I face regularly every summer.

    It's a misconception that a little rain will hurt the saddle. The problem is that a thoroughly
    soaked saddle will deform under load.

    >How feasible/comfortable is it to ride with a plastic bag over the Brooks?

    It's not particularly difficult to do this but you'd better use a thick plastic bag. Normal riding
    in the rain isn't a problem with a Brooks, provided you park the bike so the saddle has a chance to
    dry before you ride it again.

    Rain covers are available, they're inexpensive.

    If you park it where it's going to get rained on, then jump back on a few hours later, cover the
    saddle with a plastic bag.

    I have a page on this if you care to check it out:

    http://www.geocities.com/cochise_20009/features/newbrooks.html

    In fact the saddles are quite durable, it's a mistake to think that they melt in the rain,
    they don't.

    --

    _______________________ALL AMIGA IN MY MIND_______________________ ------------------"Buddy Holly,
    the Texas Elvis"------------------
    __________306.350.357.38>>[email protected]__________
     
  18. Wayne T

    Wayne T Guest

    "Eric S. Sande" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > >Heavy rain while standing at at traffic lights would mean the saddle would get very wet. These
    > >are conditions I face regularly every summer.
    >
    > It's a misconception that a little rain will hurt the saddle. The problem is that a thoroughly
    > soaked saddle will deform under load.

    I can attest to that. Just getting caught on a ride in the rain caused my Ideale leather saddle
    to deform.

    >
    > >How feasible/comfortable is it to ride with a plastic bag over the Brooks?
    >
    > It's not particularly difficult to do this but you'd better use a thick plastic bag. Normal riding
    > in the rain isn't a problem with a Brooks, provided you park the bike so the saddle has a chance
    > to dry before you ride it again.
    >
    > Rain covers are available, they're inexpensive.
    >
    > If you park it where it's going to get rained on, then jump back on a few hours later, cover the
    > saddle with a plastic bag.
    >
    > I have a page on this if you care to check it out:
    >
    > http://www.geocities.com/cochise_20009/features/newbrooks.html
    >
    > In fact the saddles are quite durable, it's a mistake to think that they melt in the rain,
    > they don't.
    >
    > --
    >
    > _______________________ALL AMIGA IN MY MIND_______________________ ------------------"Buddy Holly,
    > the Texas Elvis"------------------
    > __________306.350.357.38>>[email protected]__________
     
  19. Frank Knox

    Frank Knox Guest

    "Eric S. Sande" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > >Heavy rain while standing at at traffic lights would mean the saddle would get very wet. These
    > >are conditions I face regularly every summer.
    >
    > It's a misconception that a little rain will hurt the saddle. The problem is that a thoroughly
    > soaked saddle will deform under load.
    >
    > >How feasible/comfortable is it to ride with a plastic bag over the Brooks?
    >
    > It's not particularly difficult to do this but you'd better use a thick plastic bag. Normal riding
    > in the rain isn't a problem with a Brooks, provided you park the bike so the saddle has a chance
    > to dry before you ride it again.
    >
    > Rain covers are available, they're inexpensive.
    >
    > If you park it where it's going to get rained on, then jump back on a few hours later, cover the
    > saddle with a plastic bag.
    >
    > I have a page on this if you care to check it out:
    >
    > http://www.geocities.com/cochise_20009/features/newbrooks.html
    >
    > In fact the saddles are quite durable, it's a mistake to think that they melt in the rain,
    > they don't.
    >
    I bought one of these newer-thinner-leather Brooks Pro saddles and ruined it in the rain riding
    without mudguards. I got caught in the rain for 30 miles year and I should have brought a plastic
    bag. I didn't worry because I had treated with Proofhide, heavily on the underside. By the end of
    that 30 miles, the saddle had sagged heavily under my "sit bones" leaving a ridge in the middle. I
    tried pushing the sunken portions back up and leaving it to dry naturally in my garage. It didn't
    work. The sunken portions sank again immediately when I use it a week later.

    This never happened to my old Brooks I bought in the 70s.

    I replaced the saddle with another thin-leather Professional. This time I used Proofhide lightly and
    sprayed the underside with repeated coats of a waterproofing spray. I always bring a plastic bag and
    rubber bands in my seat pack now!
     
  20. On Sat, 22 Feb 2003 22:14:04 -0500, Baka Dasai wrote:

    > On Mon, 17 Feb 2003 03:17:45 GMT, Alan C. Acock said (and I quote):
    >> I live in Western Oregon and ride in the rain. As long as I'm sitting on it, it is dry. When I
    >> leave the bike I put a plastic bag over it. I remove the bag when I ride again. Proofhide is
    >> probably good enough if you are sitting on it (and have fenders).
    >
    > Heavy rain while standing at at traffic lights would mean the saddle would get very wet. These are
    > conditions I face regularly every summer.
    >
    > How feasible/comfortable is it to ride with a plastic bag over the Brooks?

    People do it all the time. I never liked the feeling, myself - but the solution I'm using now, the
    Carradice B.17 Bonnet on top of a Saran QuickCover fits snug, is totally waterproof, won't tear, and
    feels much better on one's bottom than a plastic bag.
     
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