I've perfected the sprung saddle!!

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by bluegoatwoods, Sep 6, 2015.

  1. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods New Member

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    Perfected? That's a big claim. Maybe I'm going too far. Perhaps there's room for improvement.

    But I doubt it!:)

    But, in any case, I'll lay out the parts needed here. In case anyone wants one for themselves.

    I'd recommend this particular saddle. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003RLDQBE?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00

    DSCN0517.JPG

    I've experimented also with the Cloud 9. And it works. But this saddle seems much more apt to this job. The front hairpin spring certainly helps. Plus, on this model the 'seat pan' is also suspended by a criss-cross of narrow extension springs. Almost hammock fashion. So this saddle already has some 'bounce' to it. IMHO, it's superior to the Cloud 9.

    Remove the rear springs plus the posts that mount them.

    Detach the main undercarriage from the front hairpin spring and flip it over.

    DSCN0521.JPG

    The bolts that held the old springs on are not going to be long enough for you. I replaced them with these.

    DSCN0522.JPG

    Memory tells me that they're 5/16 x 7 in. But they look longer in this pic. I should have measured them. But you'll have some wiggle room on this project anyway.

    Your new main rear springs will be two hairpin style springs. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B007KPUW92?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o04_s00

    DSCN0523.JPG

    Those hairpin springs don't have the reach needed for this job. So supplement them with coil springs.

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002P4VQF2?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o06_s00

    These particular ones are cheap and easy to work with. You can experiment all you want with length.

    DSCN0524.JPG

    Darn! I've reached the limit on photos. I'll have to do a 'part 2'.
     
  2. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods New Member

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    Then thread your new springs into the mount holes for the old springs and re-attach the front mount of that undercarriage.

    DSCN0529.JPG

    DSCN0534.JPG

    I've been riding for more than a month now, I guess, on a saddle that's almost identical to this one. The only difference is that I also put coil springs into the space between the jaws of those hairpin springs. I've eliminated those on this build because it didn't seem as though they were doing anything for me. And maybe they were making the ride harder than need be. Probably not much difference since they're pretty weak springs. (For referrence; it takes 94 lbs to compress two of them one inch.)

    My results. There are two seams in the pavement on my work commute which are about 5 inches tall x about 5 inches in the direction of travel. They are not 'jagged', they're pretty rounded. Still, that's not the sort of bump that I'd go over carelessly with no suspension at all. But I can do it with this saddle with no feeling that I'm shocking my axle, my frame, dropouts or spine. I still, usually, lift myself off the saddle on these bumps since it feels as though I'm pushing the limit of what this saddle can absorb. I'm 190 lb. And I can go over these bumps at any speed without worry.

    As far as those 1 or 2 inch seams, patches, etc., in the pavement go, they're simply not a matter of concern anymore at all. I ride over them without feeling them in any meaningful way. And I've no concern for the bike on stuff like that anymore. Same with rough, gravel shoulders. The springs in the front suspension and the saddle are absorbing that sort of shocks sucessfully.

    I still wouldn't want to crash through a pothole, of course. But this saddle absorbs at least 90% of the road 'roughness' that I encounter. And, by the way, the roads in these parts are not very good. I hate driving my car over them, for instance. They're that bad.
     
  3. wheelbender6

    wheelbender6 Active Member

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    Well done, BlueGoat. I have experimented with springs from suspension kick scooters and shocks from a pocket rocket. They all work better than the factory beehive saddle springs.
     
  4. 2door

    2door Moderator
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    Nice work, Blue. Thanks for sharing the advice.

    Tom
     
  5. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods New Member

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    Thanks, guys!

    I wanted to post this one in detail because it does make the ride much more pleasant. Hardtails are for youngsters. Even then, I don't think it's a very good idea.

    I'm likely to experiment with rear suspension some day. But if I can get the saddle to do the job properly, then I might not need to get into the complexity of a rear suspension.

    And I think this model is just about there. Though I suppose I'll experiment more with other springs in the future.
     
  6. 2door

    2door Moderator
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    Like you, I need a softer ride than most bicycle saddles provide. I've had good luck with using automotive valve springs on three seats that I've built. They seem to offer more 'spring' than the ones that I find on bike seats. And, they're cheap. Most engine rebuilders throw old springs in the trash and they will happily give them to you if you ask.
    They won't be chrome plated but can be cleaned and painted.

    Tom
     
  7. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods New Member

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    As a matter of fact, I think you've mentioned valve springs before. I remember thinking, 'good idea'.

    But then I'd forget and I've never gotten around to looking into it. I'll have to work with them sometime and see what comes of it.
     
  8. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    Very cool, BlueG. And lessening the shock to the butt & back, gives the bike a break as well. Way easier on the wheels and frame if the load/rider has some give with hard road hits.

    Lost my favorite MB to a pot hole. But in the pot hole's defence, I did hit it twice, snork.
     

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