Brooks Saddle crisis- WTF is going on here!?

blorg
blorg Posts: 1,169
edited November 2008 in Workshop
What is going on with Brooks saddles? I was planning on buying two (a Swift and a B17) from Wiggle what with their current 20% off all saddles offer. I was looking at paying £23.75 for the B17 and £91.99 for the Swift. A bargain unquestionably. Unfortunately I waited too long (they were out of stock on the colours I wanted) and now I see Wiggle have removed ALL Brooks saddles from their website :shock: Having emailed them they are not giving out any details but just say that they "may" return!

I also noticed that while Cyclestore used to have the B17 for £31.34 (RRP: £32.99) it is now £47.49 (RRP: £49.99.)

What is going on here? Were Brooks manufacturing their saddles with Eurozone cows or something; these are crazy price increases!

(Any tips on where I can pick up these two saddles cheaply before everyone shoots their prices up much appreciated- note the Swift above is the titanium version.)

Comments

  • daniel_b
    daniel_b Posts: 11,768
    Very weird :?

    Cheapest I can see the titanium is £99.99 from cycle surgery.

    B17 seems to be around for £30 or so, cycle surgery again, but not the cheapest, not sure about postage though.

    http://bikepimp.co.uk/search/brooks+b17
    Felt F70 05 (Turbo)
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  • blorg
    blorg Posts: 1,169
    Thanks for that, I have fired them off an email about delivery to Ireland. Also added Bikepimp to my bookmarks, looks very handy for this sort of thing!
  • acorn_user
    acorn_user Posts: 1,137
    Titanium prices just went up a lot, so that's part of it. I think the price rises are probably warrented. It's pretty crazy that a Brooks could be cheaper than a Flite for instance.... not that I approve of having ot pay more for my favourite saddles...
  • robbarker
    robbarker Posts: 1,367
    Wiggle seemed to have pulled all their Brooks saddles.
  • blorg
    blorg Posts: 1,169
    I doubt it's titanium prices as it is a major change and seems to have affected the steel-railed saddles as much as the ti ones.
  • rrsodl
    rrsodl Posts: 486
    My guess is the company had probably borrowed heavily and with the credit crunch as it is at the moment, the company has no choice but put the prices up across the range of saddles.

    I saw the B17 at £28 and the B17 Special at £30 not that long ago. I find difficult to believe a company could sustain those prices long term and manufacturing in the UK. If the saddles were manufactured in China then perhaps they could afford it, however, I'm pretty sure the saddles would not be as good.....

    So, we might as well get used to the new prices and support the company. :)
  • blorg
    blorg Posts: 1,169
    AFAIK Brooks is a subsidary of a pretty large cycling products company, can't remember which one. They aren't quite the niche player they make themselves out to be (in fairness, they pretty much own their niche.) There is definately a heavy marketing investment (have you seen the website) although it is generally a good one (the boxes the saddles come in are very nicely designed.)

    It is of course entirely possible that the people upstairs reckoned Brooks were selling the saddles for less than the market would bear; I suspect the increase may be more to do with what people might pay than the cost of the materials.

    Personally I am a Brooks fan but modern saddles can be pretty comfy too; I'm not price-insensitive and I'll happily try another saddle if the prices are going too far north.
  • onbike 1939
    onbike 1939 Posts: 708
    Brooks prices are shooting up and I suspect the Selle themselves are responsible for this. For some time there has been a concentrated effort by their marketing people to raise prices.
    I also think that the main market for Brooks is now in the US and that is where they are trialling their new Brooks Imperial ( a B17 with a hole in the middle and lacing). Certainly the Americans are mad for any Old Worldly hype and Brooks have cleverly used this approach in the Us.
  • blorg
    blorg Posts: 1,169
    That hole in the middle thing was pioneered by a US company I think- they would take orgiinal Brooks saddles and modify them. Selle Anatomica, right?
  • onbike 1939
    onbike 1939 Posts: 708
    blorg wrote:
    That hole in the middle thing was pioneered by a US company I think- they would take orgiinal Brooks saddles and modify them. Selle Anatomica, right?

    More information can be found here.

    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=408695
  • father_jack
    father_jack Posts: 3,509
    yeah prices have hone up quite a bit, first price is how much I bought it for, and now wiggle price

    Brooks Team Pro £58 now £75
    B17 Special £31, now £65
    Say... That's a nice bike..
    Trax T700 with Lew Racing Pro VT-1 ;-)
  • Anonymous
    Anonymous Posts: 79,667
    Brooks prices are shooting up and I suspect the Selle themselves are responsible for this. For some time there has been a concentrated effort by their marketing people to raise prices.
    I also think that the main market for Brooks is now in the US and that is where they are trialling their new Brooks Imperial ( a B17 with a hole in the middle and lacing). Certainly the Americans are mad for any Old Worldly hype and Brooks have cleverly used this approach in the Us.

    I was one of the ones who trialled one and I live in Cheshire :)
  • is it to do with the price hike of things generally? i copped a san marco rolls for £22 from activesportskit and now its like £38!!!! i never really noticed prices going up until this!
  • mrushton
    mrushton Posts: 5,182
    they'll charge it because they can. If brooks can get £45 for a saddle instead of £30 guess what they are going to do. Nice saddles but imo the Selle Anatomica is better

    mcmwin.com
    M.Rushton
  • wilwil
    wilwil Posts: 374
    Whats the difference between the pro and the swift?
  • wilwil
    wilwil Posts: 374
    This is what it says on the Wiggle website:

    Brooks are currently in VERY short supply in the UK as there is very high worldwide demand for their handmade leather. If we do not have a saddle in stock then please order with confidence, but delays are currently ranging from weeks to months!

    Carbon spacers have gone up by 50% in the last month at Wiggle too.
  • Check out bikecomponents.de blorg.
    Got a Titanium Swallow there last year for 160 yoyos or thereabouts.Also Brooks tape for 26 yoyos.
  • alfablue
    alfablue Posts: 8,497
    blorg wrote:
    That hole in the middle thing was pioneered by a US company I think- they would take orgiinal Brooks saddles and modify them. Selle Anatomica, right?
    Yes, I have one - it is the absolute "dog's" - Selle An-Atomica. I paid £113, including delivery for a waterproof leather one with the laminate (for heavier riders), no customs duty to pay. The guy who owns the company was extremely helpful with pre-sales advice, and got it to me within 5 days, in time to take it on tour in August.
  • blorg
    blorg Posts: 1,169
    @wilwil- Team Pro has a long skirt like a B17 but is narrower. The Swift has less of a skirt. I have both and prefer the Swift, more comfortable and looks better (it does also cost more however.)