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Back In The Blazing Saddles Again

BonkTown strikes again. New Arrowhead saddle.
BonkTown strikes again. New Arrowhead saddle.

I’m sorry for the title, I’ve lost all creative productivity these days. On Saturday I swapped out the saddle on my cross bike, and installed a new Selle San Marco Caymano Arrowhead. I didn’t selet this particular saddle for any specific reason other than it came across BonkTown, I needed one, and it was a decent deal. When I bought the used Lemond for a cross training bike, the owner asked to keep the saddle, and I stole one from my 925 in the short term, but it wasn’t ideal, and I knew I’d have to pick one up. I’d heard something less substantial would be good for cross since I’d be getting off and on a bunch, so this seemed to fit the bill. Several months left before the season, so I can try something else if I don’t like this one. So far so good after a couple runs with it…but it did make me think about my saddle history thus far in my short cycling life…

When I got my first road bike 2 years ago, every saddle seemed like it was going to cause great pain to my backside compared to the comfort bike seat I’d been riding on for the first couple months. At the suggestion of my LBS, I tried the AvocetO2 Air 40, and have been riding it since. I didn’t really know what to look for, or to *feel* for, but this was the first saddle on my Torelli Gran Sasso, and it’s seemed to serve me well, even on the longer distance rides.

saddle_avocet1

When I put together my Cinelli Spirit as a summer project, I threw together random parts to do it on the cheap. I got this Fuji saddle with a Bianchi I bought for the Campy group and wheels. I know nothing about it, and don’t ride it all that often…so I can’t say much about it. The longest ride I’ve taken it out on was probably 20 miles, and I can’t say anything particulary good or bad about it. Although I’ve always thought that little saddle  looked a little funny on top of that big ol’ seatpost…almost like a comb over flap on a big bald guy. Maybe it’s just me.

saddle_fuji

I picked up a Redline 925 as a commuter bike, and it came with a stock saddle. I only really ride this thing a few miles to the office, or to the Saturday Market with my wife and kids. It’s pretty utilitarian and I don’t expect much out of it, so again, I have no complaints. Well, actually, that’s not true…some little sharp plastic part just under the edge started poking out and kind of tore up some clothes…that kind of sucked. I took an exacto to it though, and we’re in good standing once again. This is the seat I robbed for the cross bike, so it’s a little muddy…and NO, it’s not really installed that way, I just hung it on the post for the picture.

saddle_redline

Late last summer I stumbled across the 20th Anniversary Torelli, and it was in all kinds of funkiness when I got it. I went with an all brushed/polished hardware look and wanted something silver or white for the color scheme. The only thing at the LBS at the time, was another Avocet. Since I’d had decent luck the first time around, and since the 20th would likely be a nice day / long ride bike, I decided to give it a shot. I’ve only got about 150 miles on that saddle so far, but no complaints, yet. (And look at that pretty lugged seat post.)

saddle_avocet2

So what’s the point? I’m not 100% sure, except to say that after 2 years of riding, I may actually be starting to notice what I do and don’t like in gear. I may actually start having some preferences to the kind of gear I prefer, rather than just riding what’s put on a bike, and I may actually notice the difference in feel and performance. I’m no expert for sure, but I feel like I’m continuing to learn about materials and what works for me. The newest saddle is definitely a departure from a slightly more substantial one, but so far it’s been just fine. Since I’m racing it for 30-60 minutes max in a cross race, I don’t need the love-seat of saddles out there. And yet, on the rides I’ve done with it, it isn’t uncomfortable either.Who knows…maybe I don’t really know jack after all.

Do you have a go-to saddle, or particular preference? Do all your bikes match in terms of what you put your butt on? Do you use a different type of saddle for different disciplines of riding. Any amazing finds out there that you wouldn’t trade for the world?

And do I even need to mention the BMX saddle….

saddle_bmx

4 replies on “Back In The Blazing Saddles Again”

that BMX saddle looks so wrong in all the wrong places. I’m still riding on my dinky, lopsided, $10 clearance mongoose saddle. I know it’s time for a change since my feet start going tingly and numb at the 10 mile mark, but I just can’t see shelling out the money for the brooks I want 🙂

Natasha,It’s a 21in frame and has an original bniakrg system on it and a Sturmey Archer English 3 speed hub famous for lasting virtually forever.We are based in Hackney, Dalston Sacklewell Lane and best would be to line up a time before you make your way down.

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