Saddle Adjustment Video
Leather Saddle Adjustment Instructions
Saddle height is critical. There are a couple very complex methodologies for making sure your saddle is the right height. You can look these up online under “Lemond Method” or by looking at bicycle seat height recommendations from various fit professionals. The easiest way to know if you have the right height is by going for a short ride with someone following you. If your hips rock up and down as you pedal, your saddle is too high. Incrementally adjust the saddle down until the rocking of your hips goes away. Don’t go too low or you will lose eficiency and strain your knees. We recommend a professional fit for your saddle on your bike by a qualified expert.
With your feet at 3 and 9 o’clock drop a vertical line from your forward kneecap to the front pedal axle. The front of your knee and the front pedal axle should be in straight up/down alignment. Adjust the seat forward or backward to atain the proper setback, but under no circumstances should you adjust the saddle all the way back to the front rail bend. Leave 1⁄2” (1cm) of space behind the front rail bend.
Begin with your saddle nose elevated 1/8” - 1/4” up from level. Ride your bike sitting upright, hands at your sides. If you feel yourself slipping forward, adjust the nose up accordingly. The goal is to balance your weight over your sit bones, relieving pressure on your soft tissue.
If you feel a pressure point under one sit bone, one of your legs may be longer than the other. If you feel pressure in your groin or inner thigh, this usually indicates a shorter leg on that side. Rotate the saddle nose toward your longer leg 1 degree at a time until the pain goes away.
Saddles are pre-tensioned when we send them to you, but will require tensioning to keep the leather comfortable. Every piece of leather is different. Some saddles will require almost immediate tensioning to maintain the proper tension, others may not need tensioning for longer periods. As your saddle cures, it should develop a hammock or dip of about 1⁄2" (1.3cm) in the middle of the saddle as you look at it from the side. You should be sitting IN this hammock. We’ve inserted small indentations in the leather where your sit bones should be placed. These dents will seat you in the proper location. With regard to the slot shape, over time, at the narrowest part of the slot in the rear of the saddle, the sides should measure 1⁄4" (6mm) apart. A saddle that is straight across as you look at it from the side is over tensioned. A slot width of 1⁄2" (1.3cm) at the narrowest part of the slot is over tensioned. To tighten your leather, use a 6mm hex key to turn the bolt in a COUNTER CLOCKWISE/REVERSE direction. To loosen the bolt and leather, turn it CLOCKWISE/FORWARD. The leather on your saddle will stretch as you ride. You will know it’s time to tension your saddle if at the narrowest part of the slot, the two edges are touching and a ridge has raised on one side of the leather. If you are sitting on your seat post, it’s past time to tighten your leather, but only to the above specifications.
Other Important Stuff You Should Know
A Note About Rails
Selle Anatomica has the longest rails in the industry. This is both a plus and minus. It’s great to get riders into the proper position on the bike, but it’s very hard on the chromoly steel rails. Longer rails are more prone to bending. To alleviate the risk of bends, leave 1⁄2" (1cm) of space between the forward bend and the front of your seat post clamp. In other words, do not put your clamp all the way forward to the bend. Most importantly, TAKE YOUR WEIGHT OFF THE SADDLE OVER BUMPS.
With Regard to Waterproofing
All leather saddles require waterproofing on the raw edges and underside of the saddle. Watershed leather does not need, and should not be treated on the top. Saddle Sauce, available from Selle Anatomica is recommended. Beeswax is also acceptable. Do not use Proofide, solvents or silicones as they soften the leather, which is the last thing that we want.