Friday, June 26, 2009

Vegan Saddles

Cosmo writes:

"Hi,I am curious about your saddle. What kind of lepper saddle is it and are they easy to find. I am looking at getting a euro type bike and I know that many of them come with leather saddles. I will want to switch that out if that is what I get. Thanks.

I think it is awesome that you veganized your Velorbis. "

The plastic Lepper saddles are the "Comfotech" line. I would ask around and see if any of your bike shops can order Lepper saddles for you, I'm often surprised how many shops will special order something obscure.  Even if the Lepper brand isn't available from your bike shop, there are many varieties of animal-free saddles available.  Most seats sold in the US are non-leather.

Personally, I find a standard American gel comfort seat to be more comfortable than the Lepper Comfotech - but the Lepper is a more traditional style for a 'euro-bike.'

Hopefully you were spared the pain of reading the "vegan saddles" thread on which is full of idiots writing "but the cow is already dead."  If so, please whatever you do, don't google "vegan saddles."

Hey readers, what are your favorite non-animal saddles?


MBR said...

You know, I was actually going to email you about this in the near future after the wonderful time I had googling "vegan saddle." My Kona Africabike came with a very stiff plastic Viscount saddle, which is adequate but I had been searching for the vegan equivalent of what I've read the Brooks saddle is like.

Michael said...

Honestly, I've ridden on several Brooks saddles and I find them much less comfortable than a more modern padded saddle.

I wonder if the obsession with them isn't just a trend that's more about appearance than comfort.

For those who would rush to Brooks defense, I do understand that animal skin saddles are supposed to be worn in and they fit you better over time, like Birkenstocks, but I still don't think they're particularly ergonomic.

It looks like the seat on the Africabike doesn't have springs and that might be the main problem with it - does it?

Carlos said...

Just curious, but what saddle did your Velorbis come with?

I agree about the Brooks saddles being not so comfortable; it's probably the same as those unbearable-looking women's heels where fashion trumps comfort in the wearer's mind. My '63 Dunelt still has its ancient plastic saddle, and though it creaks as if it's about to break in two, it still holds up well, even on cobblestoned streets.

MBR said...

You know, I hadn't even noticed that the my saddle lacked springs, but, indeed, no springs!

Do you regret getting the Lepper saddle?

Cosmo said...

Thanks for posting this Michael! I don't know how I missed it. I did indeed find the thread and was insanely annoyed. So I came over here to ask you since you are vegan and clearly not an idiot. I have been test riding bikes and it has been suggested to me that the things I am not wild about are going to be fixed with a brooks saddle. I am not buying a brooks saddle so I thought I should try the Lepper. I have no idea what bike I am going to get but your information is really helpful.