Brooks Imperial one year on

I bought my Brooks Imperial about a year ago but it has not had much mileage as my Brompton has been mainly used for commuting since then. However I feel that it should be well broken in by now and as I had a 10 mile ride today I paid attention to the saddle and whether I was suffering from numb willie.

Brooks Imperial SaddleI think my conclusion is that it is better than other saddles I have had, where I often had problems half way up that hill, but at the end of the 5 mile uphill I was definitely suffering the usual symptoms. It may be that uphill is when you are likely to have problems and maybe I have to pay more attention to the saddle angle. Also I was wearing padded shorts, which I don’t for everyday use, and maybe the padding “bridged the gap” on the Imperial to transmit some pressure to the perineum.

The black saddle shows very little evidence of visible breaking in, a slight indentation under the sit bones but otherwise it looks stiff and new. My old “Honey” coloured B17 broke in very quickly so I wonder if the black pigment has an effect. The old B17 has been my most comfortable saddle so far but it never solved the private parts problem.

We have a couple of one-week tours coming up on the Pino so I’ll transfer it and see how it goes, although the standard Pino saddle has not given me much to worry about, the longest ride so far being 45+ miles.

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