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saddle types, flat v. curved(19 posts)

saddle types, flat v. curvedgregario
Jan 19, 2004 6:32 PM
Over many years of biking I've determined that by body prefers a saddle with a curved top instead of a flat saddle. What I mean by that is I find saddles with a concavity in the middle of their profile to be better. Can anyone tell me, through their experience or product knowledge, what brands/models of saddles are more of the curved variety? I've read the information on the Selle Italia website but I found it somewhat contradictory. In one section they say the Prolink is curved and in another section they say it's one of their flatter models. I could go to my local shop and look at saddles but usually the selection is wanting. Looks to me like a WTB saddle might be more curved, but they are not carried locally. Any suggestions? Thanks.
I like a curved saddle alsoDave Hickey
Jan 19, 2004 7:00 PM
I use the Specialized S-Works saddle. Like you, I like a curved saddle. The S-Works is narrow, lightly padded and has a curved profile. Sadly, I heard Specialized is no longer making this saddle. They still make the BG Pro model and it has the same curved profile. FYI, these are the 2002 and newer BG saddles. They are not the ones with the groove all the way down the center. Specialized saddles aren't for everyone but they fit my butt just fine.

I tried the Prolink Gel. For me, it was the most painful saddle I've tried. The gel portion is raised over the rest of the saddle and gives you a reverse curve. I've never tried the regular Prolink.
Here's a picture of the S-WorksDave Hickey
Jan 19, 2004 7:09 PM
They can be found on Ebay or at a Specialized dealer. The dealer saddles are usually new bike takeoffs when someone wants a different saddle.
...and being Black and Red does'nt hurt either :-) nmPEDDLEFOOT
Jan 20, 2004 5:36 AM
you got that right......Dave Hickey
Jan 20, 2004 6:56 AM
5 built bikes and everyone is black and red:-)
but it still doesn't measure up to the Real MAN saddle nmcyclopathic
Jan 20, 2004 7:31 AM
I like black and red not black and blue:-)nmDave Hickey
Jan 20, 2004 7:37 AM
Definition of termsKerry Irons
Jan 19, 2004 7:27 PM
Most racing/performance saddles have a raised butt. If you put a straight edge on the nose of the saddle, there is a long "flat" section and then the rear 1/4 (or so) of the saddle is raised relative to the nose. Many people ride with the nose slightly elevated, giving the impression of a "curved" saddle, but in fact the straight nose section points up and then the rear is elevated relative to the center. The typical range of adjustment of these saddles is from the nose being horizontal to the nose being level with the rear (nose pointing up slightly).
Not totally trueDave Hickey
Jan 19, 2004 7:46 PM
I agree some have a raised butt however there are quite a few flat saddles. The Selle San Marco Era is a flat saddle.
re: saddle types, flat v. curvedgeeker
Jan 19, 2004 7:36 PM
Selle San Marco Concor Lite is curved, with a pronounced flare towards the rear. Cheap and light (I use one).
re: Agreedteoteoteo
Jan 20, 2004 8:09 PM
Geeker, Best saddle around and the price doesn't hurt either. A few years ago I found them on closeout at CC for 10 bucks so I bought a few.
re: saddle types, flat v. curvedWoof the dog
Jan 19, 2004 7:45 PM
older versions of selle italia flite is what you are looking for. They had a very pronounced curve compared to their current model... or maybe its just that the only ones i've seen were so worn in that they were more concave.

Fizik alsoCritLover
Jan 19, 2004 9:05 PM
Except the new Areone, which looks kinda flat (though I haven't seen one up close yet). The Aliante is nice and curved, more than the Specialized. It's perfectly curved for my tush. I heard the flat/curved preference correlated more towards the shape of one's bottom. At least that was the theory of an employee in one of the local shops(R&A). It kinda makes sense, but I have no evidence to support it.
Fizik ArioneFTMD
Jan 20, 2004 9:32 AM
It's pretty flat. I just put on one and have done 2 one-hour roller sessions. It's a big saddle lenght wise and gives lots of options, so finding the sweet spot is pretty easy. So far, no numbness or chafing, which makes me very hopeful.
Regular old Flite TiSpunout
Jan 20, 2004 4:58 AM
Start with the standard and go from there. No gel, no cutouts, just saddle. Concor and Aliante are of the same style.

When adjusting them, start with a position level across the top of the saddle. This might appear nose high, but it is how they work.
re: saddle types, flat v. curvedcyclopathic
Jan 20, 2004 5:38 AM

I believe when Selle Italia refer to curved they mean round from left to right, not from nose to tail. Pers I use 6 year old Bontrager FS+10 (if you remember it was on my bike at PBP) and though it is flat saddle it has a dip in the middle, from all those hours I spent on :)

WTB and San Marco Contour looks like what you're after. Have you considered leather saddle like Brooks or Lepper? It'll take time to break it in, but it'll be all you want it to be.
Two Flites.....PEDDLEFOOT
Jan 20, 2004 5:40 AM standard and one Gel.I like the curved because I think they fit my narrow butt better.I tried flat saddles and they seemed too wide for me.Chaffing and rubbing were a big problem.
I like the curved varietyMel Erickson
Jan 20, 2004 7:15 AM
I've tried lots of saddles and the WTB SST (discontinued model) fits me the best. I've tried several of the Selle Italia models, Specialized, Avocet, etc. and have the WTB SST on all my bikes that I ride regularly. It's almost always available from Greenfish on eBay for $25 (seconds, the WTB logo wears off quickly, no affect on performance). I think the curved saddle works better than the cutout saddle for relieving pressure on the nether region. Everybondy's different and some may think the SST is too soft. For $25 it would be pretty cheap to try and find out for yourself.
Prolink is definatly.............Len J
Jan 21, 2004 6:01 AM
curved. The more you ride it, the more it settles in a curve.

Other "curved" Saddles I've tried:

Brooks Swift
Fizik Aliante