For those of you who know me well, you are aware that I’m not the most technically-savvy cat out there. It took my whole youth to learn the difference between a Robertson and Phillips…and now I’ve forgotten again!
But I do know what I like when I like it, so here goes my first product review of this blog. If you do any amount of cycling, particularly touring, you know that a good saddle (seat) is essential for your general sanity. I have some true horror stories about pain ‘down there’ from my first long trip across Australia, but I think that’s better left for over a beer or two, when your senses are numbed somewhat.
I always had pretty good saddles I suppose, and never really put too much thought into the purchase, to be honest. I found that, you buy one and it hurts like hell for a couple weeks, then your butt gets used to it and everything is OK till it dies after a couple of years. All that changed 3 years ago, when good friend (and fellow cyclist) Nigel bought me the best gift an ass could ask for – a Brooks B17 Titanium (www.brookssaddles.com). Here is an aerial shot of it taken the other day.
Brooks have been making beautiful, handcrafted saddles since the late 1800s, and they are really built to last. 30 years is not unheard of, if properly maintained. Mine is now over 3 years old and it looks and feels totally brand new…and I put some relatively serious km on it, I think. The beauty of these saddles is probably the material. They are made of high quality leather, and after a few rides just take your shape, so to speak. After that you never notice you are sitting on a saddle, at least in the sense that it gives you no grief.
Downside? The price ($100 and up). However, I easily went through two saddles in 3 years in the past, and I’m sure I’ll get many more out of my Brooks.
Oh, I forgot to mention the best thing about Brooks saddles. You don’t need a Phillips OR a Robertson to maintain them. They come with their own wrenchy-screwy-thingy.