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Selle Italia SLR Seats

1 rating: 1.0
Sport and Outdoor

The goal of ultra lightweight construction is fully achieved in the SLR. Just 160 grams with nothing sacrificed in terms of technical specifications. Features includs carbon shell, padding fashioned from EVA (closed-cell foam weighing only 5 grams), … see full wiki

1 review about Selle Italia SLR Seats

Looks Painful but is Actually Comfortable

  • Apr 9, 2004
  • by
Pros: Lightweight yet comfortable. Very durable.

Cons: Looks intimidating. Pinstripe rubs off over time.

The Bottom Line: An excellent choice for the current Selle Italia user looking to lighten up their bike due to the similar shape that all Selle Italia saddles use.

This review will be about their SLR "basic" as Selle Italia calls it, their saddle that they market in the U.S. that weighs 135 grams. My experience with this saddle will be based on 3.5 years on a road bike and after logging in over 10,000 miles. Here are my findings:

Test Bike- 2000 Trek USPS carbon fiber road bike with USE Alien carbon fiber seatpost, full Ultegra Grouppo and Profile Design carbon cranks.

Materials Used- Outer covering of saddle is made of real leather with a thin foam padding. The shell that supports the leather and foam padding is made of carbon fiber and the rails under the shell are tubular titanium for your seatpost to attach to.

Overall Shape and Looks- Similar to other Selle Italia saddles. It has a narrow nose area while the rear of the saddle has a slight groove in the middle to reduce pressure to your gluteus maximus (posterior) area. Due to the thinner foam padding, this saddles is visually thinner than other Selle Italia saddles. I would describe the saddle visually as looking thin yet stiff. Others in my road biking club would describe it as painful looking.

Specifications- According to the Selle Italia website the width is 139mm while the length is 275mm. Advertised weight is 135 grams +/- 8%. Mine came in at 140 grams using my Pelouze digital postal scale.

Actual Use on Road- First let me say this is a very subjective area. Especially since I am an experienced rider. I will describe my experiences of on road use looking from that perspective. Initially, when I first purchased the saddle, like my fellow riders, I was concerned about the comfort. As soon as I started riding with the saddle, I immediately felt that the comfort and feel was no different than previous Selle Italia saddles that I have used in the past. Specifically their Flite and Flite Gel saddles is what I used in the past. I attribute the the comfort and feel I experience due to two reasons. First, the shape of this saddle is very similar to the previous Selle Italia saddles I have used in the past. So my posterior area was already conditioned to accept this saddle. Second, the carbon shell used is very forgiving and somewhat more flexible over time. This helps especially with the overall comfort of the saddle. Even using this saddle on century or metric century rides, I have not experienced any numbness in my posterior but I would also attribute some of that by my using high-quality cycling shorts to prevent that from happening. I would suspect that if you were used to a different saddle from a different manufacturer, it would take you a couple of rides to dial in the comfort with this saddle. Just make sure to use a high-quality cycling shorts with whatever saddle you choose to use.

Durability- Luckily, knock on wood, I have not fallen off the bike to see how well the leather would take on road rash. What I can say is the leather is very durable. Just condition it from time to time to keep the leather looking new. The silver pinstripe on the saddle is a different story. It rubs off over time. Cosmetically it doesn't look as good as new but functionally works like brand new.

Warranty- One year from defects but wear and tear is not covered.

Features- Titanium rails has markings to help you dial in the correct position for you.

Conclusions- If you are already a Selle Italia saddle rider looking to shave weight off your bike, this would be an excellent choice for you. For others, again you will need to probably adjust your posterior but don't let the looks fool you, it is very comfortable and forgiving. I would highly recommend the saddle especially to weight-weenies.


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