Tuesday, April 11, 2017


Busted. (Click to embiggen- look for red arrow)
During the Renegade Gent's Race I was lifting my bike up during some stop or another and noticed that the typically solid feel I had when grabbing the saddle by the nose had been replaced by an alarmingly flexible feel. Oh oh! Something done busted! 

Once I determined that it wasn't catastrophic and that I could continue, I didn't worry about that old WTB Pure V saddle until I got back to the familiar confines of the Guitar Ted Laboratories. There I scrutinized the saddle and saw that the insert in the nose of the saddle placed there to give some relief to a rider's......ahem!....undercarriage, had broken free from its bonds. This allowed the surrounding plastic shell to be far more flexible than it should be. And who knows? That shell may be compromised as well. At any rate, it was time to replace that old Pure V.

So, typically I almost never get a saddle to wear out, break, or whatever. I have too many bikes to ride and too little time in each saddle to really cause any of them to fail in some way. Then too, there was the search for a good saddle for my gravel travels which took some time to figure out. Back in my mtb days when all I did was ride mountain bikes, the saddle of choice was the WTB SST. That saddle was a shade too narrow for me to sit on and grind out miles of gravel, but for mountain biking, it was the bees knees from where I sat.

Once I started riding gravel in earnest, I had to figure out what I liked for sitting long periods of time on during long periods of pedaling. The WTB Pure V came over from a mountain bike when I built up that Black Mountain Cycles frame and fork, so it has been there since. I lucked out by getting to ride that saddle and have it work out. Meanwhile I figured I would experiment with other saddles because maybe there was something better. Well, besides the Brooks saddles I use, no- there wasn't anything better. Sheer luck there.

That's how it is supposed to look underneath there.
Anyway, that's how I came to get this WTB Pure V to break. I just had it on there long enough and rode it enough every year to get it to finally give up the ghost. So, I didn't mess around with any thoughts of another saddle. I immediately placed an order for another WTB Pure saddle in the "Pro" version. Note- WTB dropped the "V" designation from the Pure. I guess maybe they got too much speculation about what the "V" meant? Hmm.....

Well, however that is, I have a new Pure saddle on there now and after a short test ride the feel is very good. Back to that "firm nose" again, which is to say, "not a loosey-goosey" broken nose feel. It was obvious to me that the old Pure V probably had been broken before the Gent's Race but I hadn't discovered it until that event.

Other than graphics, this Pure has a different cover than my old Pure V has. WTB calls it "Microfiber", whatever that means. I am pretty sure my old Pure V has a leather cover. At least it feels and acts like leather.  I also just got an older OE (Original Equipment) Pure V off of my friend's Fargo which I think has a stitched leather cover. So there are a few different versions floating around out there. The new Pure saddle's cover feels good right now. I'll withhold judgment until I get a hot weather ride in on it. But I think it will be just fine otherwise. Same shape, and essentially the same saddle as the Old Pure V. Why shouldn't it work?

Ready for miles of gravel traveling.
Now I'm all fixed up and the Black Mountain Cycles rig is back to being the functional, versatile rig that it always has been. Between this new saddle and ability to run big, puffy 700c rubber, I should be doing some long rides in relative comfort. The WTB Pure also makes a great mountain biking perch as well if you don't have to scoot off the back too much, or if you have a dropper post, which then renders the width a moot point.

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