saddle, seatpost, shoes...

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by cldpsu, Dec 19, 2003.

  1. cldpsu

    cldpsu New Member

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    hey guys whats up,
    I am considering getting a new saddle, seatpost, and shoes. What is the purpose of these light weight microscopic saddles? im wondering what it would feel like on my crotch, they look like they hurt big time. Seatposts- what makes one different from another? do they actually have different suspension on ur body? ive seen some that are a lot wider than others, whats the purpose in that? Shoes, i currently have some 90 dollar shoes and am thinking about upgrading. I heard shoes are more expensive based on their weight and how hard the sole is, giving you a evenly distributed power while pedaling. Is this true? Are there any other reasons for upgrading?

    Thanks,
    Cristian
     
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  2. lokstah

    lokstah New Member

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    Greetings.

    Well, for starters, some context could be helpful. What sort of saddle, seatpost, and shoes are you using now, and what do you like/not like about them? It's important to have some idea of where you stand on these things, because one guy's "microscopic saddle" is another guy's sunday cruiser seat.

    I'm guessing, though, that you're refering to ultra-low-profile racing saddles like the Selle Italia SLR, the Selle San Marcos Aspide, and semi-minimalist jobs like the Fizik Aliante. The idea behind them is actually pretty simple. For short, super casual riding, a big squishy seat is fine. For many riders, though, the more time you spend in the saddle, and the more agressively you ride, padding becomes a liability -- it can actually work to redistribute pressure to soft tissues, sort of spreading it out all over the place and causing numbness and other problems.

    A good-fitting, well designed minimalist saddle aims to support your bones, and not much else. If it can prop up your pelvis and hold you stable, and you can get used to the feeling, your softer tissues will thank you at the end of a 100 mile day of hammering.

    The catch, of course, is that all butts and crotches are different. If you're happy with your saddle, you may not need to change up. Take the leap if you would like to experiement with the possible benefits of a seat that weighs less, is easier to move around on, and may make long hard days less threatening to your crotch.

    Seatposts are simple. If they're durable, they get the job done. Points of subtler variation include the design and quality of the clamp, and how easily it allows you to make adjustments. Beyond that, the fun topic is the material its made out of (typically either carbon, aluminum alloy, or titanium). It's highly debatable how much of a difference these materials make in a piece as small as a seatpost; the most noticable difference they amount to is weight. There are heavy and light posts of all materials, but in general, both carbon and ti are easier to make lightweight components out of. The typical sense is that carbon and ti also ride smoother, but again, that's personal, and subtle at best. Aluminum models tend to be less costly.

    Shoes? Yeah, you got it. Weight is, again, key, and stiffness. There are different schools of thought on the stiffness factor -- Sidi, for instance, a top maker, insists that soles need a little give here and there, while other high end makers often strive for complete rigidity. Either way, any shoe over $100 is likely to be stiffer than a shoe under $50; stiffness makes power transfer more efficient and is less like to strain your foot and cause muscular pain than a sole which bends, strains, or wraps against the pedal.

    Again, it'd be helpful to know where you're coming from, so that we could put these considerations into perspective...
     
  3. cldpsu

    cldpsu New Member

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    hey thanks a lot,
    I appreciate the reply. Right now i currently have the factory seatpost from my 2001 Lemond Buenos Aires, the factory saddle, and i have a pair of black and blue, SPD Shimano's, i think they're called SPD SL's, atleast that what it says on the side of them. They were about 89.99.
     
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