Suspension saddle...not seatpost.
I have FS MTB right now. I am planning on picking up a FS 650B in the future. I have a bad low back, so, I want to find a seat with some suspension. I ride my shocks essentially locked out most of the time so that they only work when the bumps are big enough, but, I want some added cush from a suspension saddle. I don't want the added weight of a heavy spring saddle or a suspension seatpost. I will use that on another bike without rear suspension. I thought Pirelli or Avoset or some other company made a seat with suspension. There were rubber springs where the rails met the saddle. Does anybody remember those? Is there an alternative.
Ride with your suspension active and not locked out? There's no reason to ride a FS bike if you're going to ride it locked out 90% of the time. If your trails are that smooth, you're on the wrong bike.
Use a skinnier seatpost with a shim to fit your frame?
Fat rear tire with tubeless conversion and low pressure?
These are the main ways that I've made my back happy.
If you've got $$$ to burn I've heard good things about Koobi saddles. They have small chambers underneath the saddle for comfort.
Koobi Bike Saddles - Saddles for Road, Mountain and Triathalon
That pales in comparison to the extra weight you caring around from linkage, shock and fork that you're not using. Start using those, problem soled. Way more comfort then suspension seatpost will ever be.
Originally Posted by morkys
[QUOTE=morkys;9554517Is there an alternative.[/QUOTE]
set up your suspension correctly?
This thread made me laugh..a lot. Your bike's suspension is the answer you are looking for. Unless your FS is junk, you should be fine never needing the lock out on. Then, if you threw in some leg and arm suspension (i.e., get off your butt), you'll be golden.
btw--many saddles have some sort of "suspension" in them. Look where the metal rails join the seat to see if there is an elastomer or bushing of sort...or just some softer plastic. Then there is a little softness as the seat materials span the metal supports.
Last edited by heyyall; 08-01-2012 at 07:20 PM.
I agree with the posts here that you should utilize your bike's suspension. That being said, if you are not interested in going that route and want to pursue a saddle based solution, I have read good things about Kobi Saddles
Look into saddles with cut-outs like road saddles. They flex.
The unexamined life is not worth living - Socrates
For me after years of trial and error, docs, exercise, sit-ups, research and gismos, one word hyperextensions.
Last edited by theMeat; 08-02-2012 at 09:25 AM.
Round and round we go.
I have some bad discs in my back that made me look to a full suspension for relief. Works really well, having the bike and my body (standing as needed using arm/leg shock absorption) handle the suspension duty.
I was originally on a hard-tail bike and tried various things to get relief:
I tried the gel saddle pads (actually had an old Spenco from the 80's) that fit over your saddle....no real help.
I tried a Kalloy Guizzo suspension seatpost, after a while it ended up making clicking and squeak noises....annoying....no help.
Switched to a Thudbuster seatpost...didn't like the movement feeling that the manufacturer said you wouldn't feel...kept feeling my hands react to the movement, didn't give a sense of stability at my ass or my handlebars...no help.
Tried a Lookin saddle that had these elastomer pucks in-between the rails and the shell...a little better but it wore to a point (really quickly) where it started to make a squeak and click....annoying again...so no help.
Looked at the possibility of getting a saddle by Sportourer, which used a combination of flexible shell, elastomers, and little magnetic things that were supposed to let the saddle rails float on a cushion of invisible magnetism. I couldn't find any in my area at the time so I ended up passing on this product.
Eventually realized the only real way to get relief was to locate a full-suspension that worked for me. Found on on Craigslist for a nice price and have been riding the bike since 2008. Key was to use the suspension and have it set up properly. It does not have a lockout, and I would not want one. I can change the damping and rebound to fit whatever trail conditions I might find, and combining it with riding smart/light I don't get many back issues.
Since getting that bike I re-purposed my hard-tail as a commuter bike. I was back to wanting some sort of suspension to get rid of the "road-buzz" when riding pavement to work. I discovered my solution in a Brooks B-17 saddle. The way the leather is suspended between the attachment points at the nose and rear of the saddle provides enough "suspension" to get rid of the high frequency/low intensity hits that were hurting my back.
Heavy, weighing in at just under 2 lbs but the comfiest saddle I've ever used (after the break in period). I have one on my commuting/touring bike. The springs are heavy duty and do offer shock absorption, even flattening out washboard roads pretty good The only downside beside weight is for technical riding, it's a little wide so your your leg brushes it.
There's other similar options out there too.
some cases of back pain respond to extension, some respond to flexion. Depends on the person. There is no way to tell unless you try both and see which one works.
Originally Posted by theMeat
I would echo the comments about a proper frame, if you have the money to shell out. Most modern mid-range FS frames intended for trail riding have suspension linkages that significantly reduce pedal bob to the point where a lockout is nice, but unnecessary.
Other than that, look at suspended leather saddles, such as the Brooks B-17 or Team Pro. They have a certain amount of inbuilt flex just due to the design, that takes a little of the bump out of the ride. Models with titanium rails will flex more. Just beware, it is not going to feel magical all at once...my team pro took almost 7 months of riding 70-100 miles a week to break in.
Why do you lock the suspension out? Negative travel is just as important if not more important than positive travel, set up your sag correctly then take the time to transition from HT (feel) to a proper FS feel.
If you insist in getting a cushier saddle get a gel cover saddle, it gives a bit. Know this even if you can find the right saddle you mentioned, it would bug the $hit out of you, getting the seat height change everytime you hit the bumps.
People who sit down when they are hitting bumps are a mystery to me. Why would you do that? Are your legs that weak and puny? Are you that tired? You realize that's also a really good way to damage the family jewels too, right? And finally, if you are going any speed at all, you have much more control of the bike out of the saddle than seated.
People who still ride HT's are a mystery to me.
True, that's why I said "for me". After a few weeks of a 1/2 dozen sets 2 or more x a week, and after any initial soreness, you'll have a much better idea if it's gonna help, and after a few months you'll start feeling the true potential, but most everyone who exercises core, neglects the spinal erectors which are connected to, closest to, and help support the spine so unless you have some medical issues, it won't hurt.
Originally Posted by SpAgetttt