Some people would never consider riding in jeans. As someone who isn't hung up on the notion that I always have to wear cycling clothes when on a bike, I'll ride in jeans now and then as long as I'm not riding too far -- like pedaling around the neighborhood, riding with my kids, or running some errands. But the thickness of the seams, and their location, means I don't want to ride in jeans for more than a few miles. But now there is a way to ride in jeans in complete comfort.
Brooks Saddles' new Cambium saddles have been making fans since their introduction last year. The vulcanized rubber saddles have a canvas top bonded to them and reviewers have praised them for good comfort, durability, and classic good looks. I'm still waiting for Brooks to send me one to try out for review, but my requests must be getting lost. (I'm sure that's it -- I mean, we share a name for cryin' out loud). I've long been a fan of their natural leather saddles (see HERE), but the new rubber saddle seems worth a try. Now, the latest addition to the line is a collaboration between Brooks and Levi's -- a Cambium saddle topped with recycled Levi's denim.
For the time being, the limited edition saddles are exclusively available at Levi's Commuter Workspaces in Brooklyn, Los Angeles, and London. In October they will be available from the Brooks online shop. One interesting twist on the recycled denim idea is that Brooks and Levi's are inviting people to bring clean used denim to one of the three Workspaces so it can be re-used to make "as many saddles as possible." People who do so would get 20% off from Levi's and from Brooks, along with a chance to win one of the saddles (the collection began earlier in July). I think it would be pretty cool to get the saddle made with your own vintage jeans, but I doubt there's any provision to make that likely. (Think about it, Brooks!)
To my eye, the saddles look pretty classy, and due to the way that every pair of jeans wears and fades a little differently from every other, each saddle would be slightly different. No two alike. Between the looks and the reported comfort, I think the saddles would be a complement to a lot of classic-styled bikes, new or old. The one thing I can't seem to find out anywhere is the price. The regular Cambium C-17 sells for around $140 (online prices vary a little -- shop around), so that's at least a frame of reference. By the way, the classic Brooks B-17 sells for roughly the same price nowadays, depending on the options -- titanium rails push the price near $200!
Learn more at Brooks Saddles website.
Just a short post today -- get out and ride!
I've had a cambium c17 on my main workhorse for the past 8 months and have no complaints. Nabbed it for $145 when they first got to town.ReplyDelete
Also, I'll do a 10 mile commute in Levis and the cambium is nice to me. It was already a match made, now I have to buy a new bike so I have something to put a denim c17 on!
I haven't heard negative from anyone who's tried the cambium. The new denim version looks pretty cool.Delete
Is the denim treated with something to slow down wear? Otherwise, won't time/miles = disposable saddle due to the cover wearing through?ReplyDelete
It must be treated or coated in some way -- I believe the regular Cambium is.Delete
I have been riding a Cambium on my commuter for well over a year now, having been selected as one of the beta testers. They've bonded and sealed the fabric layer quite well and I have not spotted anywhere on the saddle where the fabric has even started to delaminate or wear. The saddle is quite comfortable, and the fabric creates a different kind of surface than a leather saddle, though it does not seem to cause undue wear in clothing. I still prefer a leather saddle on really long rides; I used the Cambium on a double century last year and had a few more saddle sores than normal, though there could be other factors at play besides the saddle. It is far superior to leather in the rain, which is how it wound up on my commuter (my commute is a little under 40 miles, round trip, with about 25% of that on dirt roads). As far as the denim is concerned, I'd prefer it if they would use new fabric. I've got to think there's going to be a difference in durability.Delete
I'm also a Brooks fan, but it does take time to break them in, and with multiple bikes, one has to have some saddles that are a bit more ready-to-go. I have a Cambium, which I bought at a discount (just over $100) in the US. I think they are not as popular as Brooks expected. I know why they developed them (need to have something not so precious and for the Vegan market) but don't understand the pricing, to be honest. The "racer" crowd is not them, they have the traditional "Tweed ride" market but not with this saddle. Had they priced it at half what they did, they could have had an introductory product. I mean, you can get a great saddle that you can leave in the rain for under $50.ReplyDelete
But I think Brooks is now run by British marketers, not by bike people. They have a fashion shop in London's Covent Garden (which I've been within a mile of a dozen times but never felt the urge) where they sell some lovely impractical pannier bags and other fashion items. I wish them well.