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Picking a New Saddle

By Dee - Posted on 01 August 2016

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.

I am in the market for a new saddle and am keen for any recommendations.

Currently using a Brooks B17 which I love for the comfort but when I'm chucking it about on the trails it bashes my inner thighs too much.

Cannot recommend high enough with the the WTB volt Pro saddle for comfort.
Just got my new bike and found that a stealthy one they put on it looked great but when I got this one put on it was comfort from the word go and no breaking in required.
Looking up online its reasonably priced as well.

It's not a weight-weenie saddle though - quite heavy. Also a little short if you like climbing the steep stuff and you want to get your weight forward so the nose doesn't lift while pedalling seated. (Did I actually say the words "like" and "climbing steep stuff" in the same sentence? Shocked )

Definitely prefer it to the Silverado, which is an arse anvil. After getting a nasty set of saddle sores from persevering with said anvil too long (sorry, too much information, I know) I've found the Prologo Nago X-8 to be quite good.

Like you I bang up my inside thighs a lot if I have saddles over 135mm.

I like the WTB too, I have it on my XC bike, I have a Specialized Henge on my fitness bike which I also rate highly.

A Henge that came on my Rize way back when and it's a comfortable saddle.

The issue for me is that the right size for my sit bones per the Specialized Ass-O-Meter is 143mm, but my thigh gap isn't wide enough and I get bruised up riding techy XC like the OP. Spesh saddles seem to run a little wide.

I guess that means I'll never be a supermodel Sad

Thanks for the feedback everyone. I have been looking at each option and have created a little table to make it easier to compare them all. I have my original B17 as a reference which is too wide and probably as long as I need but a little extra might be OK.

Is there somewhere I can sit on a WTB Volt Pro?

I also included a couple of other Brooks models that size-wise might be ok but it would be an expensive experiment to trial them. Has anyone tried a Brooks Cambium on a mtb?

W - - L - - - Model
175 - 275 - Brooks B17
140 - 283 - Brooks Cambium C15
132 - 275 - Brooks Cambium C13
135 - 265 - WTB Volt Pro
135 - 280 - Prologo Nago X-8
143 - ??? - Specialized Henge Sport

Where do I find an Ass-O-Meter? Measuring the dents on my B17 I get 100mm butt wondering if that is accurate.

If the supermodel option is off the table, maybe you can be a hand or foot model?

I sat on the ass-o-meter at Nicks Cycles in Springwood which measures between your sit bones. It's literally a piece of wood with some soft memory foam on it that changes colour - they just measure between the 2 points. I think this one was a Bontrager one but they'd all be the same. They all just provide the measurement, not which saddle you'd prefer though.

If you like the Brooks maybe a Chromag Trailmaster LTD would suit? I liked mine but found it a bit wide in the gooch bit for 50+km rides.

Thanks fairy1, the Chromag looks like an interesting option.

Does the leather conform to a riders shape over time?

I know WTB test saddles are available in some stores.

I wish I'd known that. Sad

Dee- Yeah the leather is quite a bit thicker than most common brand name seats(nothing like a Brooks though) and softens as it breaks in. I'm a baggies wearer so a nose that doesn't snag shorts is a big plus, I hate pointy dropped noses.

I'm going to the Lynx next but it has normal thin leather but the shape suits me more.
There is an Aussie importer but I can't think of the name, there is also a NZ importer if the local one has nothing.

I think that the Fizik Aliante XM is the most comfortable saddle I've owned.

Stuck my head in the door at Cheeky Transport of Warners Bay and the very kind fellas there let me sit on a WTB Volt. The shape didn't really suit me, I could feel pressure from the slight upward curve on the length of the nose. Maybe it needed to be angled down a little more, not sure.

They had lots of saddles there that could be taken for a test ride. After a browse and some discussion I took home a Fizik Gobi AM and going to give that a run. I don't see the Gobi AM listed on the Fizik website so maybe it's an old model.

Will give an update after I get on it this weekend. Mind you the trails will probably be too wet.

It's been around awhile. I've been running the Gobi for a good 7 years on various bikes. I'd have rated the Volt ahead of it, and tonight's ride home on the 26er hardtail that sports my last remaining sample of it reminded me why. Very firm.

Try the Volt with a slight downward tilt, say 2 degrees and if still doesn't agree with you then you've given it a fair go.

Thanks hawkeye for the downward tilt advice, that does make a difference but it makes the nose a bit too pointy down for me. Riding a single speed gets me up out of the saddle a fair bit and the pointy down nose snags my clothing.

Rode the Gobi for a bit over 4 hours on Sunday and it was only just starting to feel a bit sore at about 10 min before I finished. I would only rate the pain at mild discomfort though. Jumped on it again for my commute this morning and it was comfortable again.

The width is great, it allows an easy transition off the back and doesn't bash my thighs around at all. So far I'm liking it a lot.

The Chromag Aussie importer is Bike Brew

Chris is the man on the ground there and very helpful.

The component prices seem pretty good and the site looks nice, however $1500 for Taiwanese frames with some seriously old school geo seems a bit rich.

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