Blog

This is a collection of articles summarizing thoughts on everything related to saddles and saddle-making.

Chafing is a result of friction wearing away the skin. Friction is always present, even when the skin is not yet worn and no discomfort is felt. With more time on the bike, there comes a tipping point when the skin breaks and we acutely and suddenly experience chafing. Since friction is always present, any action taken to reduce chafing needs to be employed before we experience discomfort.
‘Fog of war’ is a military term describing uncertainty in a situation due to the lack of information. In the context of saddles, we are often unaware of the necessary facts required to select the right saddle; when using a new one, it can be difficult to isolate the root causes and resolve issues that crop up. We discuss different aspects of this fog: the impact of sitbone width guesstimation, reference points used when providing and receiving saddle feedback, the conveyance of intended saddle usage from designer to the cyclist, and various contributing factors to specific problems.
We had a booth at the recent Interbike 2016, and it was great talking to a whole bunch of cycling folks. We thought we’d try and summarize some of the discussions and common questions asked.
We’ve recently been talking to cyclists who aren’t sure why saddles with gradual tapering (also called V or pear-shaped saddles) are useful. We describe in this short article how it is related to the rotation of our hips while pedaling.
We’ve been asked many questions about different aspects of a saddle and noted recurring misconceptions people have. In this short article we address two of them:
  • A saddle with less padding is less comfortable than one with more.
  • A different saddle with the same shape will work just as well.
The key in understanding why the two statements above may not always be true lies in how the effective saddle surface flexes while pedaling.
We’ve interacted with a number of riders and observed how they went about adjusting their saddles’ fore/aft and tilt positions. We realized that they can be classified along two dimensions: knowledge of reference points, and inclination to tweak saddle position. This short article is written to disseminate information about how others adjust their saddles, and to shed some light on what to look out for.
Every now and then, someone comes up to us and tells us exactly what he wants as the shape of his custom saddle. His expectations of what the overall process should be is different from Meld’s automated way of generating saddle models based primarily on the anatomy. After encountering a few of these folks, we think that since they own custom-built bikes, perhaps they believe our process of making custom saddles should be similar. In this article, we explain why there are differences between the two.
Most people who asked about our underlying tech focused on how the physical saddle shells are made. We, on the other hand, are much more interested in how the 3d model of the shells are generated. By automating this step, we let machines handle the bits unique to each person (i.e. the customization aspect). Machines can do this much more quickly, at significantly lower costs.