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Changing Saddles

Old 07-15-21, 06:32 PM
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MemRiverman
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Changing Saddles

I am trying out a new saddle. My previous saddle was comfortable on my hybrid for 15-20 mile rides except for "numb nutts". It was a Stella Italia. I rode with new saddle for first time. Hooray--no "numb nutts"! However my backside was slightly sore or uncomfortable. It was like when I first started riding. Then after a week or so my butt got broken in and it was comfortable. So my question is when you change saddle do you have an adjustment period to it just like when you first started riding?
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Old 07-15-21, 06:34 PM
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Old 07-15-21, 09:16 PM
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Old 07-15-21, 09:41 PM
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Depends. From what to what.

I am having a bunch of 'acceptable' leather saddles (good for 30-40 miles) modified to be better for longer rides in an aero position. Some saddles can be adjusted to accommodate more riders' preferences.
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Old 07-16-21, 05:48 AM
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I very much doubt that my experiences will relate in any way to your experience with this saddle and your particular bike and riding posture.

To answer your question, generally, I don't get too much change in comfort from a change in saddle. But I'm very particular about the saddle type. I really only ride two types of saddle: slung leather or racing-style. For slung leather (think Brooks, Ideale, Fujita, Gyes, etc.), I'm extremely careful with the nose angle, setback and design width to match the application (utility bike, commuter, more aggressive, etc.).

For racing-style, I have a set of criteria that define which saddles I'm willing to try: firm, flat, narrow. So, these eliminate 95% of the saddles sold. The remaining saddles can all be comfortable for me, as long as that nose angle (pitch) is set up correctly. If I swap between any of these saddles, my experience is generally favorable right from the get-go. Subtle adjustments are still needed to correct for variations between them, though.
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Old 07-16-21, 02:56 PM
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Old 07-16-21, 05:13 PM
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For sure.
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Old 07-16-21, 05:27 PM
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Many/most saddle issues can be resolved by incremental adjustments to angle and fore-aft positioning. Millimeters matter.
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Old 07-16-21, 05:51 PM
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Many/most saddle issues can be resolved by incremental adjustments to angle and fore-aft positioning. Millimeters matter.
Where's the data that supports your assertion?

Did you ever buy a saddle that didn't come on a bike you bought? How old are you? How many bikes? how many saddles? How many miles? How many years of riding?

I'm pretty experimental, and I have a limited budget, so I experiment with lots of micro-adjustments before buying a new saddle. I did a lot to make previous saddles work for me, and I'm on my at least my 5th saddle on this bike; of course, I started with this bike in 1982.

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Old 07-16-21, 05:56 PM
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^ I definitely need a drink.
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Old 07-16-21, 06:13 PM
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Originally Posted by philbob57 View Post
Where's the data that supports your assertion?

Did you ever buy a saddle that didn't come on a bike you bought? How old are you? How many bikes? how many saddles? How many miles? How many years of riding?

I'm pretty experimental, and I have a limited budget, so I do a lt of work before buying a new saddle. I did a lot to make previous saddles work for me, and I'm on my at least my 5th saddle on this bike; of course, I started with this bike in 1982.
Jeez, that escalated quickly.
I'm kinda thinking his data is pretty similar to yours, one guy's experience with saddles.

I learned a long time ago not to make saddle suggestions based on my experience. You could put a bike seat shaped rock on top of one of my bikes and as long as it's not too wide, I'll be fine, even if it's tilted funny. And I don't wear any padding.

Anyway, I don't think anyone has the slightest idea what you mean by doing a lot to make a saddle work, but I suspect do a bunch of micro adjustments would fit into that category.
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Old 07-16-21, 06:26 PM
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I don't think anyone has the slightest idea what you mean by doing a lot to make a saddle work
Yeah, sometimes I have a hard time finding words. Thanks for mentioning how to fix the sentence. I mean exactly that I've done a lot of micro-adjustments before buying a replacement, especially since replacements aren't guaranteed to be an improvement.

I really hate over-generalizations, and I REALLY hate statistical arguments not based on data. I'm convinced part of the reason our society here in the US is so fouled up is that we have too many people who make bogus statistical assertions, especially when it's so unnecessary.

I'd have absolutely no problem with: 'Many saddle issues can be resolved by incremental adjustments to angle and fore-aft positioning. Millimeters matter.'
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Old 07-16-21, 06:32 PM
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Originally Posted by philbob57 View Post
Yeah, sometimes I have a hard time finding words. Thanks for mentioning how to fix the sentence. I mean exactly that I've done a lot of micro-adjustments before buying a replacement, especially since replacements aren't guaranteed to be an improvement.

I really hate over-generalizations, and I REALLY hate statistical arguments not based on data. I'm convinced part of the reason our society here in the US is so fouled up is that we have too many people who make bogus statistical assertions, especially when it's so unnecessary.

I'd have absolutely no problem with: 'Many saddle issues can be resolved by incremental adjustments to angle and fore-aft positioning. Millimeters matter.'

Ok, but maybe just make clear that the only word you were objecting to was "most". It really looked like you were unloading on the guy for completely unclear reasons.
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Old 07-16-21, 09:41 PM
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I havenít really gotten used to my saddle over time and Iím honestly sort of at my witís end trying to find the perfect one.

My stock saddle was making the nuts numb unless I tilted it WAY DOWN and then I was falling forward and putting way too much pressure on my hands and causing numbness/tingles in the hands.

I did the sit bone measurement thing at Mikeís Bikes and bought the Specialized Power Expert which dug into my inner thighs/hams. Traded in for the Power Arc at the shopís recommendation and the inner thigh issue is solved but after about 20-25 miles my sit bones are in pain and I find myself having to step off for 2min every 30min of riding (standing to pedal helps some). I also sometimes get caught out and realize my twig n berries are numb.

Iíve has a professional $200 bike fit and have risen this saddle for over 6 months (over 2k km) and still get these issues. I tried a softer Chinese Amazon saddle and it solves the sit bone pain but the soft material compresses the perineum and causes numbness way faster.

Iím not sure I can afford to keep buying new saddles to test out, but thereís no ďexchangeĒ program I can find near me. I may try a Brooks saddle based on reviews but Iím starting to lose hopeÖ
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Old 07-16-21, 10:50 PM
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Originally Posted by philbob57 View Post
Did you ever buy a saddle that didn't come on a bike you bought?
I've probably never kept the original saddle on any bike.

Originally Posted by philbob57 View Post
How old are you?
61

Originally Posted by philbob57 View Post
How many bikes?
More than I can remember.

Originally Posted by philbob57 View Post
how many saddles?
At least one for each bike

Originally Posted by philbob57 View Post
How many miles?
Hundreds of thousands

Originally Posted by philbob57 View Post
How many years of riding?
50

Originally Posted by philbob57 View Post
Where's the data that supports your assertion?
Right here (pointing to crotch)
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Old 07-17-21, 02:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Hikebikerun View Post
I havenít really gotten used to my saddle over time and Iím honestly sort of at my witís end trying to find the perfect one.

My stock saddle was making the nuts numb unless I tilted it WAY DOWN and then I was falling forward and putting way too much pressure on my hands and causing numbness/tingles in the hands.

I did the sit bone measurement thing at Mikeís Bikes and bought the Specialized Power Expert which dug into my inner thighs/hams. Traded in for the Power Arc at the shopís recommendation and the inner thigh issue is solved but after about 20-25 miles my sit bones are in pain and I find myself having to step off for 2min every 30min of riding (standing to pedal helps some). I also sometimes get caught out and realize my twig n berries are numb.

Iíve has a professional $200 bike fit and have risen this saddle for over 6 months (over 2k km) and still get these issues. I tried a softer Chinese Amazon saddle and it solves the sit bone pain but the soft material compresses the perineum and causes numbness way faster.

Iím not sure I can afford to keep buying new saddles to test out, but thereís no ďexchangeĒ program I can find near me. I may try a Brooks saddle based on reviews but Iím starting to lose hopeÖ
Dang it's not supposed to be this hard. You ever think maybe you're just not meant to ride a bike? It's possible. Seriously though, as much information as you've given, you haven't really given all that much that is useful in helping you. O.p. say's they are a Clyde. Are you one also? How tall are you? What size frame? Stem? Drops? Flatbar? Padded shorts yes/no? What is your style of riding? If you just sit there for 30min until things start to burn you're doing it wrong. You should get off your butt quite often, that's why its called a saddle. In some styles of riding you are out of the saddle with every stride the horse makes! You are using some of the energy the horse generates to lift yourself but it is an active experience. You ain't just sitting and spinning.

I do not subscribe to the wisdom that we have a unique snowflake of an @$$ and THE saddle is out there you just have to sift through dozens of them to find it. What are the chances?! You could literally try 30 different models of saddle and there would be that many more and much more that you would miss. Maybe YOUR saddle was discontinued the year before you started riding. Now what? No, it cannot be that random and serendipitous. With understanding of how to fit a bike and also how you should ride one I think it is possible to be happy on most seats decent enough to carry a brand name. PM me and we can get this sorted out. I guarantee it.
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Old 07-17-21, 06:48 AM
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I think there’s a much simpler effective synonym for “statistical arguments not based on data:” opinion. But is opinion so bad?

We cyclists who have had to make our bikes more satisfactory by adjusting our saddles, choose large and small adjustments as we see fit at the moment. For me, those are based on my opinion. Sometimes my opinion is based on canny consideration of what I feel and how my last magic fix worked or didn’t. Sometimes I just grab the wrench and change something, and deal with the result (ouch).

I really don’t see any practical way to document the process and hence produce data. We also don’t have a common language to describe comfort problems and the subsequent lack of a problem. I think asking for data is an impossible request.
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Old 07-17-21, 07:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
Dang it's not supposed to be this hard. You ever think maybe you're just not meant to ride a bike? It's possible. Seriously though, as much information as you've given, you haven't really given all that much that is useful in helping you. O.p. say's they are a Clyde. Are you one also? How tall are you? What size frame? Stem? Drops? Flatbar? Padded shorts yes/no? What is your style of riding? If you just sit there for 30min until things start to burn you're doing it wrong. You should get off your butt quite often, that's why its called a saddle. In some styles of riding you are out of the saddle with every stride the horse makes! You are using some of the energy the horse generates to lift yourself but it is an active experience. You ain't just sitting and spinning.

I do not subscribe to the wisdom that we have a unique snowflake of an @$$ and THE saddle is out there you just have to sift through dozens of them to find it. What are the chances?! You could literally try 30 different models of saddle and there would be that many more and much more that you would miss. Maybe YOUR saddle was discontinued the year before you started riding. Now what? No, it cannot be that random and serendipitous. With understanding of how to fit a bike and also how you should ride one I think it is possible to be happy on most seats decent enough to carry a brand name. PM me and we can get this sorted out. I guarantee it.
I kind of agree, although I think most people have a preference for a particular style of seat. I personally prefer slightly concave saddles over flat ones. I also prefer a small cutout. Width is also fairly important for me. I don't like very narrow or very fat saddles. I'm really getting on well with the current trend toward slightly shorter saddles with a fairly wide back e.g. Fizik Tempo Argo suits me perfectly. But I can also ride a more traditional Aliante all day too. I'm not that fussy about saddles. But the really flat saddle that came with my 2019 Giant Defy was terrible. Even a couple of short rides were painful.
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Old 07-17-21, 07:50 AM
  #19  
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Originally Posted by Hikebikerun View Post
I haven’t really gotten used to my saddle over time and I’m honestly sort of at my wit’s end trying to find the perfect one.

My stock saddle was making the nuts numb unless I tilted it WAY DOWN and then I was falling forward and putting way too much pressure on my hands and causing numbness/tingles in the hands.

I did the sit bone measurement thing at Mike’s Bikes and bought the Specialized Power Expert which dug into my inner thighs/hams. Traded in for the Power Arc at the shop’s recommendation and the inner thigh issue is solved but after about 20-25 miles my sit bones are in pain and I find myself having to step off for 2min every 30min of riding (standing to pedal helps some). I also sometimes get caught out and realize my twig n berries are numb.

I’ve has a professional $200 bike fit and have risen this saddle for over 6 months (over 2k km) and still get these issues. I tried a softer Chinese Amazon saddle and it solves the sit bone pain but the soft material compresses the perineum and causes numbness way faster.

I’m not sure I can afford to keep buying new saddles to test out, but there’s no “exchange” program I can find near me. I may try a Brooks saddle based on reviews but I’m starting to lose hope…
i would try going back to the not soft saddle, set it level, and lower the saddle height bout a sixteenth at a time, until the sit bone bone pressure problem reduces. Then start to raise the nose just a little, again a sixteenth at a time (measured with respect to solid ground, at least until you get the hang of it), until some discomfort is found forward of the sit bones (wherever, I don’t want details).

Then I would probably drop the saddle until it is a little more comfortable, then experiment with angle to even out the pressure all along your bottom side. At this point you should have a pretty even pressure or sensation all under your saddle, not much sit bone pain, awareness of where the sit bone perches are and of whether you tend to fall off them. This could be because of gravity and your saddle is too nose down. Or it could be the frame requires you to stretch out to reach the bars. Here the fixes are to try a shorter stem, shorter reach bar, or a frame with shorter top tube. You can see considerations which go beyond the saddle.

You could also find yourself pressing down or back on the handlebar and creating hand pain. For me, if I'm pressing down too much, I think my center of gravity is too far forward relative to the BB. I then try to move the saddle back so that if I have to raise my body off the saddle for a bump, I don't start to fall forward and have to pull myself backwards. For me this is a very fundamental setting, and afterwards I usually have to repeat some of the saddle adjustments. After that I might want to raise or lower the bars for a more relaxed grip on the bars. If I'm pressing my body back with my hands, possibly I am falling off the saddle perch points due to gravity.

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Old 07-19-21, 09:00 AM
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I'm also in the "millimeters matter" camp. Also, "many" can be substituted for "most", and that doesn't change the concept in the least.

There is a reason why Eddy Merckx was notorious for measuring and re-adjusted his race bikes with a high degree of personal attention.

This focus on fit and adjustment has proven beneficial for my wife, an avid rider, and for me. And we're talking the smallest of changes made incrementally over a long period of time. Saddle-to-crank placement, saddle pitch, handlebar saddle-to-bar distance and drop, handlebar width, reach or drop, handlebar rotation, shift/brake lever placement. All of it very carefully discovered.

For mountain bikes, we're very attentive to not only the location of the bar, but the rotation if it has any riser angle at all. The width, and corresponding placement and angle of controls, bar end placement and angle, ergo grip angle. All of this contributes to comfort and ease of use.

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Old 07-20-21, 04:53 AM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by MemRiverman View Post
I am trying out a new saddle. My previous saddle was comfortable on my hybrid for 15-20 mile rides except for "numb nutts". It was a Stella Italia. I rode with new saddle for first time. Hooray--no "numb nutts"! However my backside was slightly sore or uncomfortable. It was like when I first started riding. Then after a week or so my butt got broken in and it was comfortable. So my question is when you change saddle do you have an adjustment period to it just like when you first started riding?

I just switched to this one, I have a couple of hundred miles on it, and so far I`m pleased.
'
https://bikeroo.com/collections/bike...ed-bike-saddle
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Old 07-20-21, 11:19 AM
  #22  
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I probably had 10 bicycles and many more saddles than that. I had never had one that was perfect. That is until I saw Michael Rice from the bicycle touring show on NHK with a ISM saddle. Iíve ridden on it for months now and can say ďIíve found my perfect saddle.Ē No more numb nuts or pain in the butt. Ahhhh!
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Old 07-20-21, 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by MemRiverman View Post
I am trying out a new saddle. My previous saddle was comfortable on my hybrid for 15-20 mile rides except for "numb nutts". It was a Stella Italia. I rode with new saddle for first time. Hooray--no "numb nutts"! However my backside was slightly sore or uncomfortable. It was like when I first started riding. Then after a week or so my butt got broken in and it was comfortable. So my question is when you change saddle do you have an adjustment period to it just like when you first started riding?
Yes, I have always had a break in period with a new saddle.Have you ever tried a saddle with a split down the middle ? In my opinion they tend to be way easier on the taint area. I ride on a Sella SMP Pro that is quite firm but very comfortable to me. The split down the middle has been a lifesaver for me.
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