Author Topic: Brooks saddle choice?  (Read 1284 times)

Brooks saddle choice?
« on: April 23, 2020, 12:42:42 pm »
I have thought about getting a Brooks saddle for some time. I have never tried one.
I am male, 5 foot 7 with short legs.

Looking at the SJS cycles website there is a whole variety of them. Help!
What is the difference between a B17 and a B17 short?
Also colour choice - I have a Hewitt steel tourer. The black colour is the classic Brooks choice,
I wonder though if the brown might look nice with that bike?

pdm

  • Sheffield hills? Nah... Just potholes.
Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2020, 12:59:12 pm »
The reason there are so many choices is to suit the plethora of shapes out there!
For more relaxed posture touring, there is the B17. For sit up and beg, the B66, B67 or Flyer. For more sporty riding, the Professional or Swift. for racing, the Swallow.
Really, it all boils down to the shape of the derriere and what feels comfortable.
I'm on the larger side, so the wider B17 and Professional fit better then the narrower Swift, though i have found the Swallow fine as well.
My current seat of choice on the everyday bike is the Spa Nidd - same as a B17.

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2020, 01:03:24 pm »
B17 short was originally designed as a ladies saddle.  However if its comfy for you, why not?

cheers

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2020, 01:12:14 pm »
Thanks both. I quite fancy the Spa Nidd with the cutout.
I shant invite the usual YACF pervs with a comment on getting bits trapped in it / inviting mucky comments.

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2020, 02:15:45 pm »
I've got a brooks imperial up for grabs if you're interested (and a B17, too)

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2020, 04:07:49 pm »
I broke in a spa Aire Ti saddle on PBP very comfortable towards the end. There is a lot more support than you would expect from appearance. Tried a Nidd and sent it back was far too broad in the beam for me.

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2020, 11:59:48 am »
I’ve used the b17 narrow, b17 standard, flyer and b17 champion (it ties underneath). The narrow was ok, but I’ve come to prefer the standard width.
The flyer is very comfortable on my gravel / touring get up.
Colour - honey is my favourite and develops more character as you use it.

I’d try a b17 standard in whatever colour you like. It’ll need 100-200 miles to break in. They hold their value so you can resell if you don’t get on with it.




Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2020, 12:18:27 pm »
The B17 short is a bit more curved, my standard B17 was much flatter when new over the B17S I bought for Mrs trekker. She didn't like it so I sold it via eBay for not much less than we paid new.

My B17 is Honey and fitted to my black Croix de Fer, with matching Fizik leather honey bar tape I think it looks rather smart. As above the honey one's seem to develop a bit more character - in my case helped by a very wet day's riding on tour in 2017 when it was only a few hundred miles old.
Duct tape is magic and should be worshipped

S2L

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #8 on: April 29, 2020, 12:28:18 pm »
I've had many Brooks... I'd say if your seat bone is quite wide (read big ass), then the B17 is excellent... I only use it to commute on the Brompton now, because it's too wide for me.

If you are on the skinnier side, then I would recommend something like a C15... which I have used for Audax and it's an excellent saddle to spend hours on... it also does not change shape with time, like the leather ones do.

There are some Brooks I'd steer clear of and these are the Swallow and the Swift, for different reasons

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #9 on: April 29, 2020, 01:54:50 pm »
I've had many Brooks... I'd say if your seat bone is quite wide (read big ass), then the B17 is excellent... I only use it to commute on the Brompton now, because it's too wide for me.

If you are on the skinnier side, then I would recommend something like a C15... which I have used for Audax and it's an excellent saddle to spend hours on... it also does not change shape with time, like the leather ones do.

There are some Brooks I'd steer clear of and these are the Swallow and the Swift, for different reasons

I'm a loose 34 waist and use B17s.  I tried the Swallow but it didn't suit - too narrow - sold it for more than I paid.  Recently pre-lockdown, I tried a saddle on an expensive carbon fibre bike and found it comfortable for a 2-3 hour ride. 

Colour: brown or black, I got a grey one cheap - very comfortable but now very patchy grey/black, looks a bit tatty.

 
Sic transit and all that..

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #10 on: April 29, 2020, 10:24:52 pm »
Apologies if this seems like a dumb question but I am genuinely curious about comments on why wider saddles might be less comfortable for people with narrow sit bones, does less comfort in this context just relate to the increased risk of chafing of inner thighs?






Most of the stuff I say is true because I saw it in a dream and I don't have the presence of mind to make up lies when I'm asleep.   Bryan Andreas

LittleWheelsandBig

  • Whimsy Rider
Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #11 on: April 29, 2020, 10:55:42 pm »
Too-wide saddles dig into the hamstrings and/or push the rider too far forward.
Wheel meet again, don't know where, don't know when...

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2020, 05:59:40 am »
Quite a lot of useful input about position on this thread:

https://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?topic=115354.0
Sic transit and all that..

Pedal Castro

  • so talented I can run with scissors - ouch!
    • Two beers or not two beers...
Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2020, 06:29:01 am »
I love the Swallow which I have on 4 bikes, actually just 2 as one of the 4 is a Wright's version so same shape but different make and the other is also a Wright's saddle but one I cut down to match the shape of the first. I also have a Giles Bethould Soulor which is the same shape.

As with all saddles, once you find one that works buy a spare. When I bought my first carbon bike I was planning to put a Brooks Swallow on it but the synthetic saddle it came with a Prologo was so comfy I bought a spare, and another 2 since then.

S2L

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2020, 07:04:18 am »
Apologies if this seems like a dumb question but I am genuinely curious about comments on why wider saddles might be less comfortable for people with narrow sit bones, does less comfort in this context just relate to the increased risk of chafing of inner thighs?

Yes

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #15 on: November 13, 2020, 10:47:08 am »
I've been using a Honey B17 for a while, but I'm putting together a Roberts and want to get a Dark Brown Saddle. I'm considering a B17 Special or a Swift.

I love my standard B17, but still feels a little wide. I'll be using the bike for some of my commuting, possibly audax and certainly 100-200km rides. On long rides, I become more aware of the width, although not had any chaffing problems on the side and had no chaffing problems since the first 100 miles with the middle of the saddle.

B17 seems to get more recommendations than the Swift, is there something I'm missing?

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #16 on: November 13, 2020, 11:00:49 am »
Apologies if this seems like a dumb question but I am genuinely curious about comments on why wider saddles might be less comfortable for people with narrow sit bones, does less comfort in this context just relate to the increased risk of chafing of inner thighs?

It can. There are other problems too.  About 5 years ago I put my back out after a 30min session on a hotel exercise bike with a wide saddle.  Pedalling vigorously on a saddle that was too wide had forced the joints at base of my spine apart and the pain lasted about a month.

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #17 on: November 13, 2020, 11:23:01 am »
B17 seems to get more recommendations than the Swift, is there something I'm missing?
A decade ago I had a couple of Swifts.  I liked the shape but never got more than a few thousand miles before they went rather saggy.  I unloaded them on London hipsters who seem to like that sort of thing. Since then I have used Gilles Berthoud which I like straight from the box.  Various shapes available.  Saddles are of course a very personal choice.

PaulF

  • "World's Scariest Barman"
  • It's only impossible if you stop to think about it
Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #18 on: November 13, 2020, 01:04:29 pm »
I've been using a Honey B17 for a while, but I'm putting together a Roberts and want to get a Dark Brown Saddle. I'm considering a B17 Special or a Swift.

I love my standard B17, but still feels a little wide. I'll be using the bike for some of my commuting, possibly audax and certainly 100-200km rides. On long rides, I become more aware of the width, although not had any chaffing problems on the side and had no chaffing problems since the first 100 miles with the middle of the saddle.

B17 seems to get more recommendations than the Swift, is there something I'm missing?

The B17 and Swift are very different saddles; the B17 is wider, the Swift longer and thinner. Also, whilst it may just be mine, the B17 broke in and became comfortable immediately the Swift is taken longer.

Re: Brooks saddle choice?
« Reply #19 on: November 18, 2020, 09:12:16 am »
I think I'm going to risk a Swift, Swallow is too extreme (remember a friend who was an dedicated Brooks follower having all sorts of problems with it and it turning into the most ridiculously over extended hammock).

I really like my B17, but it just feels to wide and I suspect my position affects that. Hopefully I won't end up in a hammock too soon...