Tales of love and war with the Selle Anatomica Titanico LD
There are things in life you love. There are things in life you hate. There are things in life you really don’t care one way or the other. The most frustrating things, though, are the ones that you love so much, you keep using them even though you hate them.
This saddle is one of those things. When I first rode it, I was in love. It was so amazingly comfortable. Roadies — perhaps with affection, but perhaps with utter disdain — call their saddles “ass hatchets.” It only takes one moderately long day in the saddle to understand why. In comparison, this device is an ass hammock — no pressure points at all. I really can’t sum up the positives of this device any better. It’s just phenomenal to ride on. It completely disappears beneath me.
But, as I’m sure you can tell, there are downsides. Downsides so severe that last fall I fired my Titanico.
First… where Brooks saddles apparently come equipped with a locknut for the tension adjuster, no such creature exists on the Titanico (Titanic???? That should be a hint…). But, this time around, I installed my own locknut. Should avoid that sensation of riding on the saddle frame instead of the ass hammock and realizing that I was, in fact, riding on the saddle frame since the tension screw had gone completely slack.
Second… During break-in, failure to keep tension high enough results in the inner sides of the slot chewing on your bits (the “taint” in my case) with each pedal stroke. Unfortunately, installation of my locknut made adding a bit of tension mid-ride impossible. May need to improve on the locknut design…
Third… incessant squeaks. The company website maintains the line “we can’t reproduce this problem.” I call BS. Everyone I’ve met with this saddle first says, “Nice saddle. I love mine.” Then they follow with, “So… have you been able to make yours stop squeaking?”
And fourth… the saddle rails are made from fine French cheese. The manufacturer stands behind their titanium rails and will replace saddles with bent rails under warranty. I think there are two problems. First, the rails could stand to be a bit thicker. Secondly, they could be a bit shorter. What’s the point of extra-long rails when the manufacturer’s FAQ recommends keeping the saddle at the middle of the rails to avoid bending rails… Or maybe just make them out of steel? I suppose at least with the Ti rails they can be easily (easily is such a strong word) re-set cold.
Despite all the faults, though, it’s an absolute joy to ride lots of miles with no pain. I’ll be riding it until I can’t stand it anymore… And then I suspect I’ll forgive it again…