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Question about carbon fibre saddles....

Old 12-02-21, 09:33 AM
  #1  
Binky
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Question about carbon fibre saddles....

I have a question about carbon fibre saddles....

My wife picked up this NEW Hylix "Carbon Engineering" bike saddle at the local thrift shop for 99 cents (Canadian): about 78 cents in real money.

Litigation being what it is, I'm sure this flimsy looking saddle is safe to use.

But will it likely be comfortable ? Its as hard as wood !!

Bink




.
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Old 12-02-21, 09:47 AM
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I think your assumption that a litigious society has made all products safe is not a good one. Don't believe me? Go ahead and try to sue 'Hylix Carbon Engineering' (or Alibaba) in a Chinese court.

As for comfort, very likely the reason it wound up in a thrift store is that someone bought the saddle off Alibaba for $5 and regretted it immediately the first time they sat on it. It is a saddle for people who build bikes for the sole purpose of weighing them, and likely will not be good for riding.
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Old 12-02-21, 09:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Binky View Post
I have a question about carbon fibre saddles....

My wife picked up this NEW Hylix "Carbon Engineering" bike saddle at the local thrift shop for 99 cents (Canadian): about 78 cents in real money.

Litigation being what it is, I'm sure this flimsy looking saddle is safe to use.

But will it likely be comfortable ? Its as hard as wood !!

Bink




.
I "wood" imagine that it really depends on ones anatomy. I know that my crushed (by a pickup truck) sitting bone would not be able to tolerate that saddle for more than a minute. I never could get back to a Brooks saddle after the accident. But you or she should give it a try for the price, why not.
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Old 12-02-21, 09:51 AM
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It will probably be about as comfortable as it looks, which is to say, not at all. Those are made for weight weenies and serious racers* who really aren't concerned with comfort as much as cutting every possible gram. They're also favored by those who just love the carbon fiber aesthetic, but again are not concerned with comfort.


* The kind of races you might use that seat in would be hill climbs mostly, or perhaps crits. For longer distances, I think even the pros opt for something with a little padding or compliance.
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Old 12-02-21, 09:53 AM
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Harder than wood, actually. I use a CF saddle, which I find comfortable, but the odds that one would find any individual saddle comfortable are low. Suited for a relatively aggressive riding position with less weight on the butt.

The 7x9mm rails will not fit all saddle clamps so check for that.



Edit I find it unlikely that any pros would change saddle for other than time trial. I use mine for all road rides including long &multiple DCs. The CX bike saddle does have some padding, 'tho. Do love the 100g weight.

Last edited by woodcraft; 12-02-21 at 10:09 AM.
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Old 12-02-21, 09:55 AM
  #6  
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Originally Posted by Binky View Post
I have a question about carbon fibre saddles....

My wife picked up this NEW Hylix "Carbon Engineering" bike saddle at the local thrift shop for 99 cents (Canadian): about 78 cents in real money.

Litigation being what it is, I'm sure this flimsy looking saddle is safe to use.

But will it likely be comfortable ? Its as hard as wood !!

Bink




.
NO so send it to me and I will pay for S&H and double your investment costs
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Old 12-02-21, 10:06 AM
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Every now and then I'll run across someone on the internet claiming that their unpadded saddle is comfortable. I find this "hard" to believe, but I've never tried one. I do have a Selle Italia saddle that is very stiff (but still has some padding) and it's hard for me to imagine something with even less cush being comfortable for anything other than very short rides.
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Old 12-02-21, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by msu2001la View Post
Every now and then I'll run across someone on the internet claiming that their unpadded saddle is comfortable. I find this "hard" to believe, but I've never tried one. I do have a Selle Italia saddle that is very stiff (but still has some padding) and it's hard for me to imagine something with even less cush being comfortable for anything other than very short rides.
Many years ago, when my much-loved Avocet saddle wore out, I peeled off the plastic cover, peeled and scraped off the rotted, mildewed layer of padding, and was left with a bare (and hard) plastic shell. My local cobbler cut and glued on a thin piece of leather, and I used that saddle on a road bike for a few more years. It was a great racing saddle, as it weighed very little and was comfy for even the longest road races that I was doing at that time.
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Old 12-02-21, 10:23 AM
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Sy Reene
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I dunno.. my dining room chairs are wood and I often use one for home office duty -- and my pants aren't even chamoi'd.
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Old 12-02-21, 10:26 AM
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I'd try it out. The saddles I find comfortable for long rides and riding at high effort are always minimal in their padding. And that was even when I rode with out bike shorts and no padding .

Why wouldn't you have tried it, or let your wife try it out before making this thread?

I will say you need to find out what the installation instructions are for that particular saddle. If those are carbon rails, then some require special clamps in the seat post and other considerations.

I think that saddle is sold as just a inexpensive cheapo saddle. However I have been impressed by inexpensive cheapo stuff at times.

Last edited by Iride01; 12-02-21 at 10:33 AM.
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Old 12-02-21, 10:29 AM
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The only way you'll find out for sure is to mount it up and go for a ride.
Sure looks pretty though.
West
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Old 12-02-21, 10:41 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by Binky View Post
I have a question about carbon fibre saddles....

My wife picked up this NEW Hylix "Carbon Engineering" bike saddle at the local thrift shop for 99 cents (Canadian): about 78 cents in real money.

Litigation being what it is, I'm sure this flimsy looking saddle is safe to use.

.
One should keep in mind that Canadians are far less litigious than Americans
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Old 12-02-21, 11:31 AM
  #13  
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What woodcraft & Iride01 said. A lot of bikes have passed through my shop with 3 or 4 carbon saddles they came with. To my shock one naked, no cover at all, carbon disappeared under me even with thin chamois. I has two sort of dimples that must have been just right for me, only marking on it is Pro Carbon just like this one on the bay:https://www.ebay.com/itm/32473715792...53.m1438.l2649. I still have it on a Vitus but the other carbons were such ass hatchets I would never buy one even at 99.
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Old 12-02-21, 11:37 AM
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I tried one and it was more durable than expected. Comfort was acceptable for off road, but I ride downhill or bumpy terrain with my butt off the saddle.
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Old 12-02-21, 12:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
Many years ago, when my much-loved Avocet saddle wore out, I peeled off the plastic cover, peeled and scraped off the rotted, mildewed layer of padding, and was left with a bare (and hard) plastic shell. My local cobbler cut and glued on a thin piece of leather, and I used that saddle on a road bike for a few more years. It was a great racing saddle, as it weighed very little and was comfy for even the longest road races that I was doing at that time.
I have seen the same thing: Under some of the crappy ripped up vynil-covered saddles that I took off bikes to flip I found the same hard light-weight moulded black plastic "GRAND PRIX" shells you referenced.
For the most part, I donated them to a bike repair course and they wound up on kids' BMX bikes, probably never to be sat upon again.

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Old 12-02-21, 01:25 PM
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Carbon fiber saddle have been available for over twenty years now. Almost all of them flex. They are not significantly different from a 1958 Unica Nitor #55 made from nylon. Except that they are lighter. Basically all nylon shell saddles go back to the Unica Nitor whether or not padding has been added.

Why would an unpadded saddle automatically be uncomfortable? Leather saddles are unpadded. Leather saddles have been with us since there were bicycles. If no padding saddles did not work bicycles would have died before they were born.
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Old 12-02-21, 01:38 PM
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I have a similar saddle on one of my favorite bikes and have ridden it for several hours without any exceptional pain, though nowadays, because I ride much less and my legs are weaker, i wouldn't choose it as my go-to for long rides.

It flexes some, and it supports my padded shorts in just the right places, and I like it a lot.

Every saddle is highly personal. If padding was what mattered we would all ride on tractor-seat sofa-saddles.

A lot of my bikes have fairly hard saddles, actually .... after one tour I did with a softish saddle which cause saddle sores, which really suck in the middle of a tour.
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Old 12-02-21, 01:58 PM
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I don't find that how a saddle looks correlates well with how it feels. I'd actually be a bit more concerned about the sharp-looking edges of the thing than the lack of padding, but I just haven't been on anything comparable on that dimension.

Probably can't hurt much to give it a try, and you'll likely know right away if it's potentially a disaster.
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Old 12-02-21, 02:11 PM
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I bought one on Amazon and thought what a great deal it was. Installed on my SL, and it gives me reason to never sit. What this seat did do was make me appreciate my other sl saddle that had wafer thin padding.
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Old 12-02-21, 02:14 PM
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Originally Posted by 63rickert View Post
Carbon fiber saddle have been available for over twenty years now. Almost all of them flex. They are not significantly different from a 1958 Unica Nitor #55 made from nylon. Except that they are lighter. Basically all nylon shell saddles go back to the Unica Nitor whether or not padding has been added.

Why would an unpadded saddle automatically be uncomfortable? Leather saddles are unpadded. Leather saddles have been with us since there were bicycles. If no padding saddles did not work bicycles would have died before they were born.
Quoted for truth. I raced on a Helyett track bike with a green Cinelli/Unicanitor plastic saddle from 1964 to about 1969, when I got a Raleigh Professional (one of the white Cino Cinelli-designed ones as used at the '64 Tokyo Olympics) with a Brooks Professional saddle. The Brooks Pro was, if anything, harder than the Unicanitor.

I suspect that the Unicanitor (which, like the Brooks Pro saddle, is still available, at Universal Cycles and elsewhere; get one for your Eroica bike!) was designed when someone observed that nylon sheets of a certain thickness flex identically to a broken-in saddle such as a Brooks or an Ideale, and without the need for a break-in period.

Ha! Just realized that my sadly neglected '60s Peugeot track bike has, in addition to a complete French Campagnolo track group and a butted 531 frame, a Unicanitor saddle, covered in what I dimly remember was referred to in the ads of the time as "buffalo leather." No padding, of course.

Last edited by Trakhak; 12-02-21 at 02:18 PM.
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Old 12-02-21, 02:55 PM
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How can you go wrong for 78 cents, great piece for a display bike.
Tim
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Old 12-02-21, 04:00 PM
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I rode from DC to Harpers Ferry MD on a saddle made of hard plastic. One made of carbon fibro surely woundna be any worse.
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Old 12-02-21, 04:51 PM
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I had an unpadded Cinelli/Unicanitor back in the day. It was cheap and tolerable and looked badass. I’m pretty sure they’re still available for those who want CFRP discomfort at a vinyl price.
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Old 12-02-21, 08:09 PM
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imo it's for having something that resembles a seat so the cyclist doesn't catch too many more dirty looks, as well as a pole up the posterior preventer. It'll likely go up the exit, but at least it'll be feather lite, just not feather like.
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Old 12-02-21, 09:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Troul View Post
imo it's for having something that resembles a seat so the cyclist doesn't catch too many more dirty looks, as well as a pole up the posterior preventer. It'll likely go up the exit, but at least it'll be feather lite, just not feather like.

Wut?
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