Tuesday, June 24, 2014

A Life with a Brooks B17

One of the most popular posts that I have written for this Blog was all about the breaking in of a Brooks B17 saddle . That particular post was written about a black B17 that I had had fitted to my new Mercian Vincitore Special and was the second in my series of Brooks B17 saddles.  In the event the life ( with me ) of that particular saddle was short as I discovered that the riding position on a road bike was significantly different from the Specialized Sirrus Comp Hybrid, my original bike and the place where I fell in love with Brooks saddles.

The original saddle was a Honey Brown with Copper Rivets and both looked and smelt like the piece of handcrafted excellence it was.

The image above  was taken when the saddle was still relatively new and at this stage the score was

Brooks B17  6   -   My Butt    0

I bought this saddle in the spring of 2008 and sat on it constantly for the next 10000km of cycling by which time the saddle and I were coming to an understanding. I fed it with Neat Oil, wiped it down when it was soaked from the rain or covered in snow, polished the copper rivets and generally treated it with respect. In return it began to change its character, moulding itself to my butt ( or did my butt mould itself to saddle shape ?)

As I started cycling more, my friends introduced me to the algorithm of how many bikes even an OAP cyclist actually needs and so I started to acquire just a few more; all essential purposes of course, no luxury here. With these new bikes came a range of saddles including Fizik Arione and Selle Italia and so the Hybrid, and hence the Brooks B17, got less use.

Recently however I have been going through a period of forced maintanence on the road bikes ( I did  tentatively suggest to my wife that this probably indicated that I  might be in desperate need of another purchase, but the look of astonishment on her face and cries of wonder made me think that I might be better putting that idea on hold ) and so I have returned to the Hybrid and hence to Brooks.

I had forgotten just how comfortable my long lost love had become as she had matured into a grand old lady

I wonder if I made a mistake in exchanging the black B17 on the Mercian, perhaps there was a more fitting model in the Brooks range I should have chosen.

Anyway, off now to give her a polish and take her out for a trip to the local tea shop.

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