When I spec’ed out my Surly nearly three years ago, the build originally called for a Terry Fly saddle. It’s what I have on the tandem, and I had been very happy with it and the older Terry Dragonfly that was on my road bike at the time. Unfortunately, the Fly was out of stock at QBP, which is where Sunshine was sourcing everything at the time. Rather than having them put it on back-order, I just told them to throw on a stock saddle, figuring I would order my own off the internet. Well, it took exactly one ride on that stock saddle before I knew that wouldn’t work, and having just dropped some pretty decent money on the bike, I decided to make do with the saddle that was on my mountain bike/commuter at the time. I figured it would be adequate until I could make myself spring for something different.
And adequate it was…for 10,000 miles. The thing is, for most of those 10,000 miles, the bike got ridden in 10 mile increments. You can deal with just about anything for 10 miles, so I never got around to doing anything different with the saddle.
But…in the long run, I’ve got plans for that bike that involve more than 10 mile at a time commutes. That began to play out a little this summer, as Pam and I got ready for our July trip on the Katy Trail. In preparation for that, I started riding the Surly more than 10 miles at time. When I did, it didn’t take long to realize that I was having saddle issues. Discomfort and numbness were nearly constant, and I found myself squirming and standing to relieve pressure a lot.
In the time I’ve had the bike, I had slowly decided that the next saddle on it would be a Brooks instead of the Terry. I was very tempted to get one before our trip, but given all you hear about the break-in period for those saddles, I was afraid to do it before embarking on a 200 mile trek so I suffered through on what I had.
After the trip, though, I started getting serious about replacing the saddle, then almost talked myself out of it because of the cost. Mike convinced me otherwise, however, when he pointed out that I put more miles on this bike than the others, so why not put a decent saddle on it? I got lucky and found a Brooks B17 Special at a bargain basement price locally. I was happy to buy it for the price of a standard B17.
I got it installed last night, and rode it to work today. I’ve got to say, even thought it is actually still hard as a rock and not broken-in at all, it was considerably more pleasant than sitting on the other saddle. I think I’m gonna like it!
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