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Thursday, May 05, 2011

replacing saddle rails on an OG san marco concor

After i got back from one of Angry's There Will Be Dirt Rides I was washing my bike when i noticed that i had snapped one of my saddle rails. I was pretty fond of this concor so i decided to try to replace the rails rather then bin the whole lot.
Originally i tried to find a damaged concor to take the rails from, but that proved hard, so i went through my box of bits and found a crappy selle italia saddle that had a similar length rail. Sawn in half through the foam, it proved easy to remove the rails. unfortunately they didn't seem to fit straight into the saddle like i hoped.

Here is most of the things you would need to do this like i did. plus one large bench vice...

The point of the V was wider then the slot in the nose of the saddle, so it was compressed in the vise till it fitted in as far as possible. Then the slot in the nose was further drilled/dremeled deeper and a little wider with a bit the same size as the saddle rail. The aim of drilling it deeper is to enable more fore/aft movement of the rails so they can be slid into the rear locating holes. I am guessing I drilled about 4mm more depth, but it would be dependent on what rails you were using.
It would be helpful at this stage to mark all three ends with graded lines, perhaps 5, one every millimeter. This would assist in making sure that each end is seated deeply and correctly.
The point of the V is inserted into the nose, and pushed in using the seatpost as handle. Then wrap a cloth around the nose of the saddle, remove the seatpost and clamp the saddle in the vice so that you can flex the seat backwards and push the rail tips into the locating holes. this will be quite difficult and the hammer is useful to hit things with, but it won't help you get the rail in so just use it to relieve stress...

Once the rails are all located, put the seatpost back on and use it to slide the rails all the way to the back of the locating holes. This is where having mm markings would be useful.
The next step is to peel back the leather strip at the nose, and mark then drill a hole just past where you think the V of the saddle rail ends. A bolt inserted here will lock the rails in position and hopefully prevent them from popping out.

After drilling a hole slightly smaller then the bolt, it simply screws into the plastic, then the leather is superglued back over the bolt head and into the seat.
at this stage it's pretty much done. If there is some side to side movement in the nose of the saddle due to the slot being a little too wide, then some 5 minute epoxy can be mixed and dribbled in to lock it in place.
All up, probably about 1 1/2 hours of drilling and wiggling and hitting things.

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