I once was given advice to invest your money on things you commonly handle. In a house, that would usually be doorknobs, flooring, and faucets, which can make your house ‘feel’ more custom, unique, and of higher quality. The same principle could be applied to mountain bikes.
For a mountain bike, that would be grips, shifters, pedals, and the seat (or saddle as it’s often called).
For some, a great bike seat is one area that those on a budget overlook. Instead opting to get lighter wheels, a better frame, etc. A serious rider may re-consider the importance a great saddle can make to your overall endurance and comfort.
Mountain bike saddles are mainly made up of four parts:
Shell: it provides the shape of the seat. Usually made out of plastic, but some high-end models use carbon fiber for lower weight.
Padding: some seats have padding and some don’t. It is applied to the shell. My BMX race bike didn’t have any for durability and weight considerations. I wouldn’t wish those for any adult nowadays!
Cover: this is what goes over the padding. Usually made of leather, synthetic material, or some combination of other materials.
Rails: rails attach to the shell. They are also the attachment point for the seatpost. They need to be durable and are usually made of aluminum or an aluminum alloy.
They come in a variety of designs. Comfort is highly dependent on ones anatomy, whether you’re male or female, and how it feels for that particular rider.
We discuss some of our favorite saddles below.
Mountain Bike Seatposts Made In America
A seatpost may seem like a trivial item on a mountain bike, but if you’ve ever had to adjust a terribly designed seatpost, you know how much of a pain they can be. American made seatposts from Thomson and Moots are industry standard designs that are fitted on anything from a XC racing bikes to downhill machines. These seatposts are lightweight and incredibly strong. The head is also designed well so that won’t move over time and is easy to adjust if need be.