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saddles chamois cream and sores!

marcuswwmarcusww Posts: 202
edited June 2013 in Road beginners
Having been through 3 saddles I am interested to hear of others experiences and recommendations.
I started riding in december and have done 1400 road miles with many 50 / 60 milers and a 93 and 102 mile.

When I first had the bike it came with a spesh toupe 143mm and did many 30 - 40 milers with no issue. After a mini bike fit at spesh they measured me up for a 155mm phenom saddle - this seemed more efficient but after a 1st 60 mile I was getting sore in the sit bone area. Changed the saddle to an avatar with more padding but this really caused some serious aching after a 93 miler so ditched that and went back to the phenom for the 102 mile. There was just sore areas and used some sudo cream on that ride. Changed to a 155mm Toupe and seems a little better. I still get red sores after 50 + miles but this clears up after 2 days. The skin never breaks but I just end up moving around a lot on the saddle. I have heard of people getting serious weeping sores and require antibiotics etc. Can my lesser sores be cleared up with more riding (getting hardened to it) or good shorts or a different saddle? I ride with Altura ergo fit bibs with gel chamois, any suggestions or recommendations would be most welcome.

Posts

  • owenlarsowenlars Posts: 719
    Why not put the original Toupe back on if that worked for you?
  • thegreatdividethegreatdivide Posts: 5,429
    Firstly – IMO Sudocrem is not good for a back side on a saddle. It’s a thick, oily, antiseptic cream. Neither is Vaseline. Both get bandied about on forums as an alternative to chamois cream. PLEASE ignore these suggestions! For long distances, especially long distances ridden on a hot day, you want a cycle specific bum butter ;-) Look at the consistency of something like Assos’ chamois cream and then a tub of Sudocrem – the latter even looks comfortable!

    Secondly – Bib short padding needs to be a good quality. Lower end cheaper bibs generally means a thinner pad. Invest in a top end bib and reap the benefits. It’s not marketing bull.

    Thirdly – A padded saddle can be more uncomfortable than a hard saddle. What you need to do is get the shape right. I’ve had a bike fit, but my saddle choice was trial and error.

    For example I ride a San Marco Regale saddle (1/3 wide at back and 2/3 narrow) and a San Marco Concor Racing saddle (quite narrow with drop sides at back). These are not what you would call padded saddles – the former is very hard – but the fit is spot on and combined with my Assos or Rapha bibs and a slathering of chamois cream I can do a century without any discomfort.
  • doug5_10doug5_10 Posts: 465
    Chamois creme? Its in your thread title but you don't mention it? Use it if you don't already, especially on 50+ milers
    Edinburgh Revolution Curve
    http://app.strava.com/athletes/1920048
  • Kingy911Kingy911 Posts: 134
    I too am on my third saddle, been riding a Prologo now for about 400 miles and to be honest it's only these past couple of weeks that it has started to feel comfortable. I did 140 miles over Sat & Sun and felt great. I think you have to persevere with a saddle and give your bum time to get used to the new shape, density etc and not just try a new saddle every couple hundred miles.
    I can't afford Assos shorts and chamois cream, but I have found some decent DHB bib shorts and some Boots Aqueous cream works for me personally.
  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,421
    Udderly smooth cream is good if you don't want to fork out for assos. Not sure why you wouldn't though, it's the only thing they make that is remotely affordable, not as good as it used to be mind.
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • marcuswwmarcusww Posts: 202
    Well just bought some assos chamois cream and doing a 60 mile on Saturday so will see what happens

    Was unsure about going back to original saddle - as the 143mm is supposed to be too small - what if I did though - any consequences for a saddle that is supposed to be too small?
  • nferrarnferrar Posts: 2,511
    +1 for proper chamois cream rather than sudocreme (I prefer Udderly Smooth over Assos myself).
    +1 for decent shorts to (although I think those Alturas you mention are supposed to be OK, I generally avoid Altura though as most of it is poor quality/fit). If you have the cash then DHP Aeron Pros are worth trying in the mid price range
    It does sound like chafing rather than bruising so hopefully the assos cream should sort you out, if not I'd try the shorts next and then maybe look at the saddle and bike fit. Remember your weight on the saddle is supposed to be on your sit bones and you shouldn't be moving around much in the saddle trying to get comfortable.
  • prawnyprawny Posts: 5,421
    Some saddle materials irritate me more too, I tried a Brookes a few years ago and although it was comfy to sit on, I suffered with terrible hot saddle sores so it had to go. I use a charge spoon atm, and although it's not perfect I don't get any really bad pain anymore.
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • simon_mastersonsimon_masterson Posts: 2,740
    I'd assume you to need some better shorts, though it sounds like the Spesh saddles might not suit you. Provided you have the right saddle (fitted correctly: fore-aft, angle, height) and the right shorts (which you are washing properly with a suitable detergent), you should be able to cycle for a good duration with no pain or soreness, without needing chamois creme.
  • dennisndennisn Posts: 10,585
    Firstly – IMO Sudocrem is not good for a back side on a saddle. It’s a thick, oily, antiseptic cream. Neither is Vaseline. Both get bandied about on forums as an alternative to chamois cream. PLEASE ignore these suggestions! For long distances, especially long distances ridden on a hot day, you want a cycle specific bum butter ;-)
    I would question you statement that you must use "a cycle specific bum butter".
    People, myself included, use all sorts of concoctions out there without issue. To say that your idea is the only way to go may be true for you but it isn't the only way to go.
    Plenty of other solutions out there including using nothing at all.
  • roger_merrimanroger_merriman Posts: 6,161
    dennisn wrote:
    Firstly – IMO Sudocrem is not good for a back side on a saddle. It’s a thick, oily, antiseptic cream. Neither is Vaseline. Both get bandied about on forums as an alternative to chamois cream. PLEASE ignore these suggestions! For long distances, especially long distances ridden on a hot day, you want a cycle specific bum butter ;-)
    I would question you statement that you must use "a cycle specific bum butter".
    People, myself included, use all sorts of concoctions out there without issue. To say that your idea is the only way to go may be true for you but it isn't the only way to go.
    Plenty of other solutions out there including using nothing at all.

    Rather depends on the person/bum but I can't be the only person who doesn't use any creams?
  • simon_mastersonsimon_masterson Posts: 2,740
    dennisn wrote:
    Firstly – IMO Sudocrem is not good for a back side on a saddle. It’s a thick, oily, antiseptic cream. Neither is Vaseline. Both get bandied about on forums as an alternative to chamois cream. PLEASE ignore these suggestions! For long distances, especially long distances ridden on a hot day, you want a cycle specific bum butter ;-)
    I would question you statement that you must use "a cycle specific bum butter".
    People, myself included, use all sorts of concoctions out there without issue. To say that your idea is the only way to go may be true for you but it isn't the only way to go.
    Plenty of other solutions out there including using nothing at all.

    Rather depends on the person/bum but I can't be the only person who doesn't use any creams?

    Not at all. Misconceptions about this are rife. Chamois creme is not a substitute for (any one or more of) the right saddle, the right shorts and the right bike setup/fit. You should be able to ride in comfort at intensity for some hours if you have all of these; chamois creme is there to make it more comfortable and to reduce chafing for seriously long durations.
  • Whilst I agree with setup etc. I do not have the disposable income to keep buying saddles, or to spend on a retul bike fit. Or top quality shorts.

    Went out today in my sugois, sit bones felt bruised after a while but that is more to do with lack of time in the saddle. What was worse was the 'pinch' I was getting on my inner thighs, and I had chamoised up. I would like it to pulling hairs out, or whe. It feels like something is trapped in the worng area with out being too graphic.
  • Go to boots chemist the pharmacy department and ask for conotrane its an anteseptic cream and its brilliant i have been using it since i started and it works well and it is under £2 a tube
  • marcuswwmarcusww Posts: 202
    Bought the Assos cream and used it on 22 miles Friday afternoon with a pair of Funkier none gel shorts and WOW!!! what a difference that cream makes. No Chaffing at all - I will be keeping the Toupe as there is no bruise or aches either.

    Did the New Forest Wiggle on Saturday 60 miles and still very good. Rode quite hard into the wind for most of the morning and was quite sweaty after 30 miles or so. I guess these cheap shorts are not that good at wicking the moisture?

    Cant really afford the Assos Bibs so looking for some decent mid range shorts / bibs good at wicking - are the DHB with the cytech pads any good?
  • rrsodlrrsodl Posts: 486
    I also got measured up by Spesh and they told me I needed their 155 saddles. I followed their advice and kept riding my Brooks Team Pro and B17. one day it occurred to me to measure the marks left on the saddle by my sitbones. I then realised I could ride a narrow Brooks saddle. The Spesh advice could not be more wrong. I guess it's all down to the person that reads the test result.

    I'm all for Assos chamois cream. Nothing else comes close to it for me. I use it for anything above 20 miles. Best bibs are the Assos for me, I have one T pro and one mile and both are great. I once bought a Shutt VR Pro and that was a disappointment. Every forum had somebody commenting of their great customer service and I guess I bought into it. The didn't last well at all and they were never comfortable. They use a gel pad and I don't get on with gel saddles, no wonder I couldn't get on with the shutt vr pad.

    For less than 20 miles I don't need any padding, just my Brooks saddle.
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