So just straight off the bat –
I’m no ‘saddle’ guru. The ‘seats’ I grew up on were big bulky BMX seats or plastic pivotals. I wear dress shoes often so I understand how Brooks saddles wear in get softer over time. I get it. I just have never had the opportunity to get my paws on a NICE saddle. Kinda going further with all that stuff too is, I’ve been vegetarian for 6+ years so I kinda like the fact that my bike has zero leather on it.
Anyways. I was at Mission Hills Bike Shop (they have a GREAT selection of Brooks goods) the other day and Brian was telling me that they were getting the new NO LEATHER Brooks in and that they were getting a few tester saddles. Needless to say, my ears perked up and the next day he offered me one of the tester saddles.
I swung by the shop, he threw it on the whip, and I was on my way.
Right off the bat I noticed how flexible the saddle is. Not in a bad way though. Just like, you can literally bend the saddle kind of a lot. I’ve always heard of Brooks taking a long time to break in. I totally grasp why that is too. Its cause most Brooks saddles are leather. Leather softens up the more you use it. The Cambium though, its in an entirely different category though. It feels broken in RIGHT off the bat. I mean, I’m guessing that it will soften up even more over time just like normal saddles, but this thing is good to go right out the box. Felt like it had been worn in and could only image it gets better over time. PLUS. Top top all that off, this saddle is still covered by the Brooks standard 2 year warranty. Anything goes wrong with it for the most part, 2 years from purchase, you can get it replaced.
Literally the only call out I have on this saddle is the length. I’m super biased though cause the saddle I normally ride is an inch shorter than the C17 + I’m a size 29 waist and I have NO butt. I noticed that there is a C17S out there as well and it’s marketed as a ‘womens’ saddle. Its about an inch shorter that the C17. The reason the C17S is shorter is that the female anatomy is different and does not require the same length saddle as a man would. Well, even though I’m not a woman and the seeing as the womens version isn’t pink glitter with tassles, I think I would prefer the C17S. No shame.
( I was wondering why this saddle isn’t marketed more as a “natural” saddle and a follower responded with a great response as to why below. )
So MY conclusion on the Brooks Cambium :
1. It is very comfortable. Really loved it.
2. The C17S should be marketed just as that though. Whys it gotta be women specific?
Check out the Brooks Cambium : HERE
Thanks Brian and Mission Hills Bicycle Shop for letting me get my hands on one of these! PS, I’m not special. ANYONE can test out this saddle. See, Brooks sent Mission Hills Bicycle Shop some tester saddles and I’m pretty sure Brooks sent them to most Brooks dealers. Ask Mission Hills, or your favorite bike shop if you’re not local, to get on the list to give this saddle a test. You can even sign up off the Brooks website : HERE.
Photos / words : Charlie Sears
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