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Saddle or shorts--which to replace first???(10 posts)

Saddle or shorts--which to replace first???DrPete
Oct 6, 2003 7:31 AM
I've been riding on a Selle Italia Max Flite Trans Am for about 4 years now (got it when that design was actually NEW... hehehe), and I usually ride in a pair of PI Ultrasensor shorts with the PRT chamois (about 1 1/2 yrs old--hey, they're an investment). Here's the deal--Longer rides are increasingly becoming a pain in the butt, and I'm not sure why. I haven't changed my position or anything, so I'm wondering if the padding on the shorts/saddle/both is wearing out.

Do saddles wear out? It still FEELS nice and cushy... What about the shorts? Help!! I have a century on Saturday! :)

Neither --Gregory Taylor
Oct 6, 2003 7:47 AM
Assuming that this "pain in the butt" is some sort of chafing problem, I'd stick with the same saddle and, if the shorts are not obviously worn out, use a little chamois cream on your nether regions. Stuff like "Udder Butter", etc., works well, or you can buy regular chamois cream from the bike store. Assos makes some good stuff.

Generally speaking, don't make a major change to your bike (like a saddle, etc.) before a big ride. You won't have time to dial in the new gear...

Doing the Seagull, huh? Don't worry, it's flatter than day old beer. If you see guys in Team Lardbutt jerseys (we'll have a small group there), jump in and say hi.
mmmmmmmmmmmmmm. beeer. nmSteve_0
Oct 6, 2003 7:49 AM
Damn straight. Beeeeer is goooooood.Gregory Taylor
Oct 6, 2003 7:52 AM
Heck, if any of y'all see the Lardbutts, hop in and say hi.
Ah yes, beer....DrPete
Oct 6, 2003 8:03 AM
Yeah, you're probably right, even though it's more of a pressure problem than chafing. My big problem on the flats is not getting out of the saddle every once in a while, and the pressure starts to wear on the old pelvis. At least in the hills (a la Civil War Century) there are plenty of good reasons to get out of the saddle.

Team lardbutt, huh? See ya there...

re: Saddle or shorts--which to replace first???innergel
Oct 6, 2003 7:58 AM
Could be your saddle is TOO nice and cushy. Esp. after 4 years. I'd try and find a new Max Flite Trans Am and sit on it to compare yours with. If it's noticeably (sp?) less cushy, I'd get the new one. I had the same problem with my Terry Fly. It had broken down so much that it had ceased to be comfortable anymore. Essentially it had too much flex and was compressing some sensitive areas on my longer rides. I swapped it for a Selle Flite, and now I'm good to go.

I'd doubt it is your shorts, unless you only have one pair and wear them every time you ride.

Just my $0.02.
re: Saddle or shorts--which to replace first???lyleseven
Oct 6, 2003 8:21 AM
could be the shorts if he doesn't wash them......Good advice about trying newer version of saddle. Saddles do wear out and its usually that "cushy" feel that tells you so.
That's kinda gross :)DrPete
Oct 6, 2003 9:29 AM
You're supposed to WASH them? hehehe... always worth asking, though...


get new shorts.dr hoo
Oct 6, 2003 10:46 AM
As shorts wear, the chamois does wear. What I have found is that on very old/worn pairs the combination of thinner material exposing more seam stitching, and the shorts shifting around (as the lose their "spring" over time) causes some chafing on any ride over 40 minutes or so. The chamois can lose its softness too. As mentioned, bag balm or chamois butter work. Noxema does a pretty good job too.

That is if the pain you describe is chafing.

Saddles also lose some spring over time. I have a saddle that I rode for 4 years with a LOT of miles on it. The plastic body of it is now too flexy to ride. My weight flexes the sides down so that I am no longer totally on my sit bones.

I don't expect to have this problem with my Brooks saddle in my lifetime.

I would NOT put a new saddle on before a century unless I had to. That's just asking for trouble. Try shorts, then saddle if needed.
Feels like the saddle now...DrPete
Oct 6, 2003 11:56 AM
Well, I decided to head out for a 22-miler today with some nice flats and some nice climbs, and I decided to focus on what exactly was going on down there. What I noticed was that I was pushing further back on the saddle than normal in order to find a comfortable position, which my hamstrings and glutes didn't enjoy a whole lot.

Since I haven't moved my saddle in a LONG time, I think what's going on is that my saddle's wings have weakened a bit and my sliding back on the saddle to get comfy is an effort to find more support for my sit bones by sliding back closer to the contact points of the rails.

Does this sound rational to anyone else?