The Brooks break-in

No, it’s not a heist. It’s the dreaded period between installing a new Brooks saddle and the first ride where you don’t even realize you’re sitting on a bike. I’m somewhere in the middle and I hope I’m closer to the end than the beginning. It is better now than when I started, and I’ve been on a few longer rides of 40 miles or so without stops except at intersections. That may not be a long ride for some others, but it’s the longest I’ve taken in a number of years – and I’m not saying how many years.

What has helped the break-in process for me involves a soaking-wet washcloth. I removed the seatpost and saddle from the bike, turn it upside down, and place the wet washcloth in the area where your sitbones contact the saddle. Since it’s upside down, the washcloth is actually on the unfinished underside of the saddle.

There are folks that suggest soaking the entire saddle in neatsfoot oil, but I’m not doing that. Others suggest soaking the entire saddle in water, and that seems excessive as well. I’m sticking with the “soak where your sitbones contact the saddle” and that seems to be working.

I think a few more soak-then-ride sessions and I will find cycling’s nirvana. I’ll let you know.