August 26, 2015 Comments Blog Posts, Reviews

Butt Check — Brooks B17 Saddle Review

brooks black SS bike
Butt Check.
Saddle Check.
All systems go. Our body comes into contact with the bicycle’s grips, saddle and pedals. We at Valleybikes take it on as a personal commitment to give the most comfortable cockpit always. We have tried a number of saddles, grips and pedals. But we shall focus on the one thing which takes the load from everything else: the saddle.

Through the decades, a lot has been tried and tested for the best bicycle seat. Originating from the horses, folks back then used leather saddles to take care of the bum when riding the two wheeled machine.
brooks for the butt
Brooks Saddles
Brooks came from a rich tradition of saddle builders and leather crafters from Smethwick, West Midlands, England. They’ve been doing this since the 1800’s so we trust that they know their stuff. Give a company ten years in the same business and they are considered experts, give them a couple of centuries and you would trust your butt to them.

Brooks B17 Saddle Review
Valleybikes got the B17 narrow a few months back. At first, the leather seems hard and unforgiving. Coming from the comfortable WTB Pure V, the B17 narrow needed a little getting used to.
Everybody says that the Brooks leather conforms to the shape of your behind.
Yes, it is true. The leather shapes itself to the contours of the rider’s buttocks. Once you have broken in the saddle, it feels as if you have a customized seat, shaped to your own liking.

Value for money
The price of Brooks is way higher than your usual saddle. But if it will survive the test of time, and you just have to switch saddles if you are changing bicycles, then it is worth it. Invest in your saddle, because research say that the perineum (space between anus and scrotum) gets worked overtime whenever we use an uncomfortable saddle. There are no direct links to erectile dysfunction (yet they have done studies already), but better be safe than sorry, right?
My take on that is: Protect the Family Jewels at all cost!

If you have biked long enough to go on centuries or epics, you probably have experienced that tingling numbness in the crotch area before. I have never experienced that on the Brooks saddle.
So far.

Brooks B17 narrow
Maintain
According to the Masters, one must take care of the saddle. It is but natural to love and take care of your belongings, right? They say it is high maintenance, else the leather will break. We believe that “you are responsible for what you tame” [Little Prince]. You acquired a piece of fine leather, you must take care of it. I had a cover sewn with a garter around it. Whenever I park the bike, I just wrap the saddle with its cover. That’s about it. I keep it dry and I don’t let the saddle be soaked in rain water. I got caught in a number of rainstorms while biking so it has gotten wet already. When I arrive home, I just get a cloth and dry it. Never leave leather soaked. Imagine a wet wallet?

Weight
It is heavier than most saddles. Yet those rivets make it look more manly. If you are a weight weenie, get the carbon fiber saddle which weighs like a feather.
Surly Karate Monkey
Valleybikes Low Down
Getting a Brooks saddle was quite a big decision for me. I have to experience what’s up with a Brooks Saddle. I am now a believer.
I like sitting on my WTB on a full suspension bike but when I sit on the B17, the saddle welcomes my buttocks with a shaped mold telling me the bicycle is mine.

Brooks B17 narrow black