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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After reading the posts about the comfort of Brooks' saddles, I decided to see if they would work for me and my butt. I purchased a Brooks B17 saddle today, applied the proofhide, let it dry and polished my new 'butt saver' up. Went out for the first break in ride and found the saddle very slippery... I am wondering, how will it ever 'break in' to my sit bones if they are never in the same place on the saddle twice?

All in all my first impression is pretty positive, the fit seems like it will be okay once the surface 'slickness' wears into the normal wear pattern... but how long should I expect to be slipping an sliding? And the proofhide procedure, should I do that every ride, every couple of rides, once a month?
Thanks
 

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Do you have the tilt dialed in? I don't remember my Pro or B17n being slippery but it could have to due with a weird tilt, most agree they work best with the nose a few degrees higher than the rear of the saddle.

Also make sure you wiped all the Proofide off the top, I really polished it off after letting it sit for a while. You should only have to apply it a couple times in the first three or four months of ownership then I've heard every 6 months after that depending on weather and riding frequency.
 

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My B17 was a veritable ice-skating rink. The only way I was able to keep myself atop the thing was to tilt the nose up, as asterisk so wisely suggests to you now. What this does, though, is force you into one spot in the saddle. If that spot is comfortable, more power to you. If it isn't, you'll be like me and get rid of the thing.
 

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At least on my butt, tilt is critical with the B-17

I have three of them, and I don't remember any of them being slippery, but it's been several years. Maybe I forgot.
How about not polishing off the Proofhide, for a start? Your shorts will wipe it off soon enough, and meanwhile maybe it will give you a little traction to hold you in place (be careful of overtreating it, though. Grant Petersen believes a couple of applications a year is plenty).
Also, I've found that tilt is absolutely critical with both the B-17 and the Brooks Pro. I seem to have a relatively numb butt and very rarely have saddle problems, but raising or lowering the nose just a couple of millimeters makes a big difference to me.
 

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I am in the process of breaking in a new B17, my first ever, and my first impression was the same as OP. The thing felt like I was sitting on a flat piece of wet ice. I was sliding all around. After a couple hundred miles and the slight indentations forming from the sit bones it doesn't feel like I am moving around as much.
 

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"Cypress Gardens" Fl.
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My Brooks "Pro" was a bit slippery too at first, but that only lasted about 50 miles I think. Seat angle/tilt is critical on Brooks. I've found that a level saddle, or slight "nose up" attitude seems to be about best though. Dont try to slide around on it. Stay firmly planted, with only micro adjustments of your ass and soon it'll start breaking in. After that your butt will just naturally slip into the "notch", and then you'll be banging yourself in the head for not trying it out sooner.
 

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Speaking of Brooks... is it normal for them to creak a little bit? I've been using mine for a couple of weeks now and I noticed an occassional creaking noise when I shift weight? Yes, I have checked the seat post and other hardware. Maybe I just need to lose some more weight? :confused:
 

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undies said:
Speaking of Brooks... is it normal for them to creak a little bit? I've been using mine for a couple of weeks now and I noticed an occassional creaking noise when I shift weight? Yes, I have checked the seat post and other hardware. Maybe I just need to lose some more weight? :confused:

Good question, mine is creaking too and I am definately too heavy.
 

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bigrider said:
Good question, mine is creaking too and I am definately too heavy.

I would'nt worry too much about the creaking. But to be sure make sure your saddle clamp at the rails is good and tight. The creaking could just be the leather flexing, or it could be your shoes flexing. The reason I say that is because my shoes creak a little if they're not cinched up, and I thought it was my saddle at first too. :)
 

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croswell1 said:
I would'nt worry too much about the creaking. But to be sure make sure your saddle clamp at the rails is good and tight. The creaking could just be the leather flexing, or it could be your shoes flexing. The reason I say that is because my shoes creak a little if they're not cinched up, and I thought it was my saddle at first too. :)

It is the saddle for sure. I think it may be in the nose area, the adjusting mechanism or where the rails go into the mechanism.
 

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Dave_Stohler said:
You do realise, don't you, that you put the proofhide on the under-side of the saddle? This will also alleviate your squeaking.

It was my understanding that it was not needed if you run fenders. Are you saying the leather is squeaking?
 

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Dave_Stohler said:
You do realise, don't you, that you put the proofhide on the under-side of the saddle? This will also alleviate your squeaking.

Actually thats a good point. Dont know why I did'nt think of it. When I bought my 'Pro' I slathered proofhide rather heavily all over the underside of my saddle and left it there, ie; I did'nt wipe it off. I also slathered the stuff all over the top too, and let it sit out in the sun for about three days, then I wiped off the top. Did'nt wipe off the underside.

Another recomendation I heard from someone was to slather the proofhide all over the top and the underside of the saddle and then pop it in the oven for two hours at 150 deg. temp.

not sure about that one, but........hmmmm :idea:
 

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indeed...

yes you slide on the brooks saddle, that is the point...the LAST thing in the world you want is to STICK to the saddle....that is when you chafe. I have probably 30,000 miles on Brooks saddles and at least 12,000 on my current B-17 N. There are definite indentations from my massive 130 pound butt...lol,,,,ok well some softer spots....Yeah they creak and squeak,,,(the rear horse-shoe shaped piece of metal and the leather and the noise-piece...IGNORE IT....when you get to be my age the squeak on the saddle is the LEAST of the problem squeaks!!!!!!!!! proofide the bottom 3 times the first year..and once a year after that...leave it in the sun for a few hours afterwards...keep it out of the rain and ride...ride....ride....

I'm telling you...I have ridden 585 miles on her in 7 days and have NEVER used balm OR been sore other than for the first 200 to 300 miles on a new saddle....and that was mostly bruising....LOL

They have been making the same saddles since the late 1800's, gone out of business and got dragged back by public demand....there IS A GOOD REASON!
 

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Mine squeaks. Only used Proofide when I first got it (14 months or so now). I should probably put some more on.

Oh yea, I also had a problem sliding forward when I first got it, and that was solved by adjusting the tilt some.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
2nd ride, getting better

Thanks for the advice. I went on a 6 miler yesterday, (staying close to home until I am sure I am not going to have problems with this saddle) after adjusting the tilt some. The nose is now slightly higher than than the back of the saddle and I still tend to slide forward when I release the hold on the handlebars. So I think I'll try one more nose up adjustment.

The saddle is more comfortable than the stock saddle that came on my Specialized Roubaix so I am hoping I can get it dialed in correctly for my particular hind end.
 

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eyefly said:
Thanks for the advice. I went on a 6 miler yesterday, (staying close to home until I am sure I am not going to have problems with this saddle) after adjusting the tilt some. The nose is now slightly higher than than the back of the saddle and I still tend to slide forward when I release the hold on the handlebars. So I think I'll try one more nose up adjustment.

The saddle is more comfortable than the stock saddle that came on my Specialized Roubaix so I am hoping I can get it dialed in correctly for my particular hind end.

after some miles the high polish on the leather develops a patina and loses the shine and slipperyness.
 
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