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Best touring saddles

Old 10-26-16, 12:31 PM
  #1  
FInish4Finn
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Best touring saddles

I have been looking for the proper touring set up and after testing out a mtb, road bike and finally a folding bike the comfort of the ride is what has been the most important for me than any other gear I have interchanged and brought with me. Right now, My best set up is my Dahon F.Taurus bike weighing in at 22 lbs. Taken me over a year to get it to this weight without spending more than $350 on top of the stock bike which left me with just the frame it seems. But, my major concern now is my saddle. I did so much research I've run into so many contradiction I'm uncertain.
Longest tour was from the point of just outside of Quebec City to Toronto and back. Saddle sore took me a week to get over in Toronto. And having tested the comfort of saddles over a couple years I found the cheep gel seat for road/mountain bike to be my better choice. I think it's older than me. My riding style is road biking, but the saddles haven't agreeded with me. I don't like saddles too wide and cusiony, heavy. I was wondering what everyone's favoured saddle is for touring.
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Old 10-26-16, 01:43 PM
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Selle Anatomica for me. I find this saddle to be more comfortable than the Brooks Team Pro.

Over the past few years I have also used a Specialized Toupe, Fizik Arione, and Selle Royal Setta. I find both the leather saddles more comfortable than the foam saddles. To be fair the foam saddles are light weight road saddles and are of a different category.
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Old 10-26-16, 02:04 PM
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I am not super fussy about saddles and have happily ridden coast to coast on the saddles that came with a couple fairly low end bikes including one that a lot of folks bad mouthed quite a bit. That said , when I needed to replace a saddle a while back I bought a Prologo Kappa and was very happy with it. It was my favorite for a while.

I have a new favorite though... I loved the saddle that came with my REI Novarra Ponderosa 29er MTB, but the rails bent and eventually broke (riding a lot of bumpy singletrack). It was the lowest end of the WTB Volt line. So I replaced it with one from the same line only a little better model. I went with the WTB Volt Race 142 Saddle and if I were buying a new saddle for any of my bikes whether MTB, tour, or road I think I would go with another of these.
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Old 10-26-16, 02:10 PM
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Completely subjective to the person. I've never had an issue with any stock saddle, from the one on my 78 Le Tour (I believe the colloquial term is azz-hatchet), to the one that came off the fiancee's mixte and went on my Peugeot (to replace an aftermarket saddle the PO put on that absolutely did not fit me), to the comfy one on my Scott MTB, that I wish I could find a box of NOS sitting around somewhere. Others think all of those are junk and not worth your time.

For aftermarket, my touring bike came with an old Avocet Touring saddle which is incredibly comfortable, albeit long and constantly snagging my tights if I want to stand up just a little on the pedals.
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Old 10-26-16, 02:15 PM
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Brooks B17.
A close 2nd would be the Brooks C17.


The C17 is narrower than the B17, but they are effectively the same width when used.


Saddles are a completely individual product. I ride saddles that others hate. Others love saddles that I think are ass hatchets. It is completely worth the time and money to go to a shop and sit on a get impression pad. That will give you an idea of your sit bone width and you can then target saddles that are made to fit you.
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Old 10-26-16, 02:22 PM
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Originally Posted by jefnvk View Post
For aftermarket, my touring bike came with an old Avocet Touring saddle which is incredibly comfortable, albeit long and constantly snagging my tights if I want to stand up just a little on the pedals.
Avocet Touring II saddles are the bees knees and the cats pajamas combined.
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Old 10-26-16, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
Avocet Touring II saddles are the bees knees and the cats pajamas combined.
+ 1.

The wtb pure saddle is very good and inexpensive as well.

As others have said, though finding the right saddle may take some trial and error.
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Old 10-26-16, 05:20 PM
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$37



VELO SENSO SPORTS VL-3206 Saddle, Black x White | eBay

I have 4 of these, one for each bike. Good for 15 hour days and very durable.
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Old 10-26-16, 06:17 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
Brooks B17.
A close 2nd would be the Brooks C17.


The C17 is narrower than the B17, but they are effectively the same width when used.


Saddles are a completely individual product. I ride saddles that others hate. Others love saddles that I think are ass hatchets. It is completely worth the time and money to go to a shop and sit on a get impression pad. That will give you an idea of your sit bone width and you can then target saddles that are made to fit you.
I agree with you there. I think I've stuck to the same saddle because it the right width. I believe it's what they call the "gooch" as I remember the Jackass film they called it. A saddle with enough of a groove in that area and softness is what I'm probably looking for. Also, it's an old saddle. The gel probably is so old it doesn't hold up after 12-16 of riding a day. I've stitched it together from it coming apart. At least I know my size. It's the shape that seems to be hard to find. As you say, it's an individual product.
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Old 10-26-16, 06:52 PM
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I don't know if it's just me but once I became accustomed to riding a Brooks B17 about 20 years ago, it's hard for me to get comfortable on anything else. Everything else feels very foreign. I did enjoy the Selle Anatomica but even their thickest leather stretched too quickly for my taste.
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Old 10-26-16, 07:03 PM
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80% of the responses are going to be either:
Brooks B17, Brooks Flyer, Brooks C17, something else made by Brooks that's similar to the B17

or

It's a personal choice.
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Old 10-26-16, 07:15 PM
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Comfortable Saddle and good bike fit Go together, hard to have one without the other. Different saddles for different bike set ups and posterior. My preference is for a leather saddle - at present have examples from Brooks, sella Anatomica and GB. All are comfortable in their applications.
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Old 10-26-16, 08:25 PM
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Brooks B17 or your personal choice.

I switched to a B17 after an Avocet touring saddle (don't remember which model).

The B 17 was great for me. YMMV
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Old 10-26-16, 09:38 PM
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B17. Started using one on my randonneur this year. Put it on my touring bike for this year's big ride. I think it's the best saddle I've ever had.
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Old 10-26-16, 09:47 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
Avocet Touring II saddles are the bees knees and the cats pajamas combined.
Yep, super comfy, just wish it was a bit shorter on the nose. Definitely would seek some out if I ever needed to swap out the ones on my other bikes, though.
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Old 10-26-16, 09:58 PM
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Originally Posted by BlarneyHammer View Post
....Brooks B17, Brooks Flyer, Brooks C17, something else made by Brooks that's similar to the B17.....
or something not made by brooks that's similar to the B17.
like a gyes gs-17/17-A for about $70-80.

Gyes GS-17A Leather Bike Bicycle / Saddle Black Laces
Gyes GS-17A Brown Leather Bicycle Saddle Black Laces, Copper Rails
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Old 10-26-16, 10:05 PM
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I'm in the 80%.
The day I changed over to a Brooks Flyer (essentially a B-17 with springs) is the same day saddle soreness disappeared forever. I didn't even have a break-in period. It felt good from the get-go.
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Old 10-27-16, 02:33 AM
  #18  
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Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
$37



VELO SENSO SPORTS VL-3206 Saddle, Black x White | eBay

I have 4 of these, one for each bike. Good for 15 hour days and very durable.
How much padding does that saddle have?
I'm intrigued and since it's not at all costly could give it a try but I can't handle a lot of padding.
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Old 10-27-16, 04:20 AM
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Finish4Finn, I've found that a saddle with a little wider seat pan than my roadies have worked well with the less aggressive posture on a touring bike. YMMV

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Old 10-27-16, 06:54 AM
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Originally Posted by saddlesores View Post
or something not made by brooks that's similar to the B17.
like a gyes gs-17/17-A for about $70-80.

Gyes GS-17A Leather Bike Bicycle / Saddle Black Laces
Gyes GS-17A Brown Leather Bicycle Saddle Black Laces, Copper Rails

Never heard of this brand. Is quality on par with Brooks? I'd be curious to try on at that price.
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Old 10-27-16, 07:20 AM
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I like the Terry Fly, I think my newest one is called the "Century." It's shaped very much like the Velo above, but you can pay an extra $100 for it
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Old 10-27-16, 07:21 AM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
Avocet Touring II saddles are the bees knees and the cats pajamas combined.

Are they still available. Seems like they are from the 80s, and they are no longer listed on Avocet's web site.
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Old 10-27-16, 07:33 AM
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The best saddle is the saddle that fits. You need for it to be durable, of course, as you can't have a saddle that works fail mid trip. Right now I'm using a Brooks C15. It's fairly narrow and that works for me.
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Old 10-27-16, 07:40 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
Are they still available. Seems like they are from the 80s, and they are no longer listed on Avocet's web site.
Nope, not still available new. I was just adding to what another poster mentioned about what came on an older bike of his.

Ive run across a couple of Touring II saddles as they were on bikes I bought to refurbish. Basic saddles, but darn comfortable for the distances Ive ridden on them. Another really comfortable saddle from that period is the Vetta saddle that came stock on a bunch of 80s ATB/MTBs and some road bikes. There was no model name, but its pretty recognizable once you see it a few times. I have one on an old rigid frame MTB and love it. If I didnt use Brooks saddles and was searching for something that worked well, I would use that Vetta until I found something better. 30+ year old design, but its simple and solid.
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Old 10-27-16, 07:48 AM
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I always had numbness issues on Brooks B17 saddles, probably because I would always slide forward on them. That said my new Waterford came with a C17 and it's fantastic. I'm not sure why but it feels a lot grippier, so I guess I don't slide forward. Or the subtle change they made to the shape. Whatever - it's amazing. First saddle I ever had where it just disappears under you. Also the natural color is just gorgeous on my dark green bike. Looks like burlap.
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