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why Brooks saddles require a seatpost with extra setback

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why Brooks saddles require a seatpost with extra setback

Old 02-18-14, 04:20 PM
  #26  
rekmeyata
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I haven't had to adjust my B17 much at all and it's now 13 or so years old, I had to adjust a about an 1/8th of a turn after about 1000 miles, then since that first adjustment I've only had to turn it about an 1/8th a turn twice; the Swift required an 1/8th a turn adjustment after the first 500 miles then again at around 1200, since then I've had to adjust it 3 or 4 times but that one is only about 10 years old. The Swift uses thinner leather so I guess it would stand to reason it would need more adjusting. Of the two the B17 probably gets used more.
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Old 06-01-16, 08:02 PM
  #27  
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I'm waking this old thread b/c i just found out the hard way about the setback issue with Brooks saddles.

I want to match the set-up of my professionally fitted road bike which I have ridden about 20,000 miles over the lest 10 years. The Brooks B-17 on the new Surly Disc Trucker's stock post -which has 20mm of setback- still leaves the saddle a full inch too close to the bars. (Both bikes are 54cm.)

Do I need to just send the Brooks back for a refund?
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Old 06-01-16, 08:16 PM
  #28  
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LOL tl;dr I point my brooks nose upward too. As opposed to the rest of my saddles that are positioned flat or with just a small upward tilt.

The brooks has been mounted on a zero setback post on a touring bike. I sit with most of my weight flat on my rear end.

Edit: Oops, just noticed the thread resurrection.

^^^I'm not sure exactly what you're trying to do with your fit, but it sounds like your old and new bikes and saddles are apples and oranges (really, the fit of a brooks and the fit of anything else is apples and oranges). You have a wierd fit or wierd legs. Or your bike is too small or your seat is too low or something. Sure you could get a Selle Anatomica and mount it all the way on the front end of the rails, but I've never seen anyone need to do such a thing. But it's your rear end, do what you gotta do

Last edited by Raiden; 06-01-16 at 08:26 PM.
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Old 06-02-16, 05:05 AM
  #29  
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~

Originally Posted by Raiden View Post
really, the fit of a brooks and the fit of anything else is apples and oranges
I'm not sure what you're saying here. The fore/aft adjustment of the saddle sets the relationship of the knee to the bottom bracket (which, of course, is determined by the length of the femur once the correct crank arm length is determined). Can you say a bit more about how the Brooks changes the requirements of this adjustment? I don't see how a saddle should change a person's body mechanics on a bike. But I'm open to learning.

Or maybe you're simply saying that the Brooks is idiosyncratic and requires certain work-arounds for many people? Which is what seems more likely to be going on here.

I should add the other saddles I've tried on this Surly have not had this issue. And it's the first time I've come across this issue in 30+ years and at least a dozen bikes. It just seems odd that Brooks won't allow you any adjustability forward of the center of the saddle.

I think i just need to return it which is a disappointment b/c I really wanted to give one a try. I just don't see spending another $50+ on a new seatpost assuming I could even find one with adequate set back. As i wrote earlier, i just wish I had come across this issue in my research before ordering.

Last edited by Brett A; 06-02-16 at 05:16 AM.
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Old 06-02-16, 05:17 AM
  #30  
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A B17 is more of a upright riding saddle like what you would do on a traditional touring bike.

I can't figure out either if you had the bike pro fitted and the last saddle was just right fit wise then why is this one suddenly an inch off? And Brett is correct in his knee to BB relationship; see this site to understand what he's saying: BikeFit - Road Bikes

The only thing I can suggest, assuming all that you said is correct which I don't think it is, but if so, then you simply need a longer stem that puts the bar out an inch further.
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Old 06-02-16, 06:04 AM
  #31  
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Brooks saddles have a very small amount(almost none) of fore and aft adjustment available on the saddle rails. If your current post puts it on the wrong place and you can't find one with enough setback, I'd send it back.
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Old 06-02-16, 06:46 AM
  #32  
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There are other leather saddles too with longer rails like the Rivet Pearl and the Rivet Diablo, see: The Pearl - Rivet Cycle Works Or the Selle Antomica X Series (but I think all their leather saddles have the longer rails); see: https://selleanatomica.com/products/x-series You may want to email them each and get the length of the rails.
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Old 06-02-16, 09:45 AM
  #33  
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Pragmatic, less fancy , Plain tube seat post, + Brompton Saddle adapter pin (a horizontal Tube) added to top of seat post , + a saddle clip.

Where the saddle clip sits on the SAP, is another setback adjustment..
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Old 06-02-16, 10:15 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Brett A View Post
Or maybe you're simply saying that the Brooks is idiosyncratic and requires certain work-arounds for many people? Which is what seems more likely to be going on here.
That's what I'd say. The B17 was designed in the 1890s when seat tubes were far slacker, and enough people have bought them since that Brooks feels they don't need to be changed. It's a good thing you aren't using a smaller Trucker, as the seat tube angle would be even steeper.

A dumb question, if I may: how have you determined that the saddle is too far forward? Is it that your sitbones are literally landing on the rear edge of the saddle and you're in danger of missing when you sit down? Or is it that your thighs are rubbing the rear sides of the saddle?

Where I'm going with this is that I had the worst time getting my B17 Regular back far enough (it was causing chafing of my thighs near the sitbones) and the real problem was that the saddle was too wide! Once I switched to a B17 Narrow, everything worked out much better. So when I read all these "can't get my B17 back far enough" threads, I wonder how many other people are in the same boat. The B17 Regular is pretty wide, after all.
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Old 06-02-16, 10:34 AM
  #35  
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How can the any saddle be too far forward on Surly LHT?? That is a long bike. Maybe you bought it too small?
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Old 06-02-16, 11:20 AM
  #36  
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Try a longer stem; you probably need one anyhow...
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Old 06-02-16, 11:26 AM
  #37  
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Your Butt is your CofG, Where it is relative to the crank influences how much weight you put on your Hands .
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Old 06-02-16, 11:29 AM
  #38  
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Seat tilt, bar height, reach to bars, etc. all matter as well...
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Old 06-02-16, 12:23 PM
  #39  
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Here's a good article on bike fit from Peter White, scroll down to the fore-aft saddle position heading, this is the part of bike fit that Mr. White considers the most important aspect of bike fit, and I agree with him.

How to Fit a Bicycle
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Old 06-02-16, 01:09 PM
  #40  
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On my Team Pro and my B17N, you couldn't have extra adjustment travel because the flexible 'skirts' of the leather top would rub against it.
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Old 06-02-16, 01:33 PM
  #41  
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I didn't read all the posts so this may have been said already but the Brooks seats are deeply rooted in tradition. And if we look at the traditional bikes of 70 years ago we will see much slacker seat tube angles than anything done now. That means the seatpost was located as much as 4 or 5 cm further back than on a modern bike. So Brooks made their seats accordingly (and in line with best racing practices). Then there is the observed fact that the evolutionary speed of change of the Brooks company is closer to the evolutionary speed of Sequoias and Joshua trees than of fruit flies.

If Brooks seats worked for me, I'd just get the appropriate seatpost or have it made. Given that a Brooks will last many years, what's a couple of hundred $$s and a six month wait?

Ben
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Old 06-02-16, 01:47 PM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by rekmeyata View Post
Does anyone know if the Selle Anatomica has short rails like the Brooks?
It has really long rails actually...
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Old 06-03-16, 10:37 AM
  #43  
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This thread seems to have become a conversation about bike fit. It really needn't. Forgive me for being a little cranky about it, but If I needed help with my bike fit, I would ask in another thread. But I don't; I'm all set with bike fit. I paid a professional (Scott Fader at Belmont Wheel Works) to get my measurements set up and they have proven correct for many years and tens of thousands of miles.

I'm simply trying to archive those tried-and-true measurements with a Brooks saddle and finding that it is not possible in this case.

Here is the saddle placement I am trying to replicate. This is not odd or extreme positioning IMO:
This saddle, in this relative position, has worked for me on other bikes for a long time and on the Surly so far this year (~525 miles total). I just find the saddle, a Specialized Phenom, to get uncomfortable after about 3 1/2 hours and really uncomfortable over the 5 hour mark.



What is odd, I find, is the fact that Brooks does not allow a saddle to be set even that far back. It doesn't seem as though the seat post clamp can even be placed in the center of the saddle; only behind the center. People should know this before ordering one. I wish I did, and am hoping to leave this info here per chance it will help others in the future. That's all.



Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
That's what I'd say. The B17 was designed in the 1890s when seat tubes were far slacker, and enough people have bought them since that Brooks feels they don't need to be changed. (...)
A dumb question, if I may: how have you determined that the saddle is too far forward? Is it that your sitbones are literally landing on the rear edge of the saddle and you're in danger of missing when you sit down? Or is it that your thighs are rubbing the rear sides of the saddle?(...)
Not a dumb question. One of the more on-point ones so far; When setting up a new saddle or a new bike, I always start with a tape measure and the measurements on my fitting report. Then I take it out for a ride with Allen wrenches in hand to do minor adjustments if needed.

With the Brooks set all the way back, my sit bones actually perch on the rear edge of the saddle and can fall right off the back of it.

I've looked around and talked to some folks and many were right there in knowing my issue. Seems the only option is to buy a new post with even more set-back. But since I don't know if a Brooks would even be a good saddle for me, I'm choosing not to spend that money, but instead I'll return the saddle and look for something with more adjustability.

Thanks everyone for your efforts.


Originally Posted by rekmeyata View Post
There are other leather saddles too with longer rails like the Rivet Pearl and the Rivet Diablo, see: The Pearl - Rivet Cycle Works Or the Selle Antomica X Series (but I think all their leather saddles have the longer rails); see: https://selleanatomica.com/products/x-series You may want to email them each and get the length of the rails.
Thanks for the links. i will definitely look at these as alternatives.
Attached Images
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01a Saddle Phenom.jpg (72.6 KB, 170 views)
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01 Saddle choice Phenom.jpg (99.7 KB, 170 views)
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02 Saddle choice brooks.jpg (100.2 KB, 170 views)
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Last edited by Brett A; 06-03-16 at 10:54 AM.
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Old 06-03-16, 10:57 AM
  #44  
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Ah, sounds like you've done your homework! It's a bummer that Surly builds the Truckers with such a steep seat tube angle considering how they're used (and that so many people intend to use B17s on them anyway.) The 72 STAs on the larger sizes is probably fine, but subtracting a degree or two across the board would be more appropriate.
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Originally Posted by chandltp View Post
There's no such thing as too far.. just lack of time
Originally Posted by noglider
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Old 06-03-16, 11:05 AM
  #45  
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If the rails were any longer the post would be too difficult to adjust on most of the traditional post designs, brooks are just too narrow further forward and the leather is too stiff. Someone probably already mentioned that. I'm tall, 6'4", and I prefer a zero offset post, even with brooks. I don't like how it looks aesthetically because it is not the norm, but I have to go with what feels right for my body. I also like steep seat tube angles for this reason. My point is that everyone is different and generally the current seatpost setback numbers are appropriate for most people. People on the extremes like myself and some other posters have to buy special posts (zero offset or extra offset) to accommodate us. The brooks design may limit it's fore-aft adjustability a little more but it works just fine for the majority of people.
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Old 06-03-16, 09:16 PM
  #46  
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I consider the small adjustment range of the Brooks to be it's biggest drawback. I have heard that they remedied this on the new Cambium models, but I have yet to try one. Maybe on my next bike. I have a seatpost with setback and still wish, at times, that I could move the saddle back a little further.
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