BikeYoke Sagma Saddle NSMB AndrewM (5).JPG
REVIEW

BikeYoke Sagma Suspension Saddle

Words Andrew Major
Photos Andrew Major
Date Jul 22, 2021

Noise Canceling, Noise Causing

I wish this could be a straight up positive review of an exciting addition to the noise-canceling category of suspension products. And truly, the BikeYoke's Sagma saddle arrives with a pedigree. It's spawned from the company that arguably has the best reputation for dropper post reliability and performance on the market, certainly one of the more finicky product categories.

The Sagma saddle brings to bear an elastomer-sprung active suspension, and a very comfortable covering. It should survive crash damage better than most thanks to the solid, carbon-reinforced, base and skin covering. It should significantly outlast other active saddles thanks to the Sagma's use of replaceable shock absorbers - 10 EUR | 12 USD | 15 CAD each - rather than relying on wing flex that will eventually soften and provide less support.

The BikeYoke saddle delivers, as promised, true active trail-noise canceling in the same vein as Rev Grips and Faast Flex handlebars. At the same time, its suspension system is stealthily tucked away out of sight, and it doesn't add significant weight at 224 grams for my 142mm wide perch. It even comes in five different colour accents across two widths! Even 80s pink-on-black. Doesn't it sound lovely?

BikeYoke Sagma Saddle NSMB AndrewM (3).JPG

BikeYoke creates unique, interesting, high-performance products. Seeing this logo always makes me a bit excited.

Unfortunately, out of the box it's not entirely 'stealthy', and therein lies the root of the melancholy melody underlying this review. I've been involved in reviews of both of BikeYoke's impressive dropper posts, the Revive & Divine, and I've ridden examples of the Revive, and installed the replacement Specialized links from which their name derives. I fully understand why the brand has a cult following.

I even suspended my typical cynicism upon seeing the six bolts that hold the saddle together, because BikeYoke has such a great reputation. And also, because from my first spin around the block, the Sagma is a saddle that speaks sweetly to my southern-stuff in soft soliloquies. But the fact is, by halfway through my first ride, the saddle was creaking like a crappy OE headset bearing mated with a notoriously creaky CSU. Then the two of them brought a six-month-old POS bottom bracket into the relationship, fully doused each other in WD40, and went for a ride on some surprisingly dusty North Shore trails.

Every single shop friend I bumped into innocently inquired "neat saddle, does it creak?" Yes, it f***ing creaks. It has six bolts supporting 190-ish pounds of me trying to torque my way up climbs. Also, yes the bolts come loose during every single ride, and before you man- or woman-splain Loctite to me, it came factory applied and it has been re-applied. Breathe, Andrew. Breathe. Also, I'm counting this as a blanket apology to all those people I may have snarked at. Sorry, friends.

With that out of the way, the tune does get much sweeter.

BikeYoke Sagma Saddle NSMB AndrewM (6).JPG

The cover and padding materials are obviously premium quality. Also - a reminder that saddle shape is always going to be personal.

BikeYoke Sagma Saddle NSMB AndrewM (5).JPG

The suspension system allows the saddle to actively float independently from the hard-mounted rails. The effect is obvious both in the shop and on the trail.

The Suspension

Back to the positive, Sagma's suspension works as advertised. Whether I'm running the softest or firmest elastomer installed in the rear position, I notice an increase in comfort over most traditional saddles. Even compared to most saddles designed with flex in mind, like Specialized's Romin or the Bontrager Verse there is more magic happening with the Sagma. It's true when my rear tire smokes something as I'm leaning hard into the saddle while cornering, and it's true when I'm delivering a tonne of body English up a technical climb.

I'm wary of bold comfort claims comparing the BikeYoke saddle against SQLab's Active system. Assuming there's an SQLab saddle that works for you shape-wise, I don't think there's any real advantage to the Sagma. Where BikeYoke has a winning system on their hands is the potential to make saddles of any shape, from the narrowest ass-hatchets to the widest cruiser decks, built off of the same suspension system. The saddle shape isn't influenced by the desired ride characteristic and vice versa.

Since I first reviewed the SQLab 611 Active in 2017, I've had quite a bit of correspondence regarding their products and that's made me realize their shape doesn't work for everyone. That's not surprising at all when it comes to perch preference, but the Active Ergo design requires a fairly substantial assular width to function (flex) properly and Sagma's performance doesn't require any particular shape.

Actually, I'll drop in on this again in a bit, but I'd love to see a partnership with other saddle companies to deliver classic shapes like the Selle Italia SLR or Chromag Mood that can be affixed to the BikeYoke mounting standard.

BikeYoke Sagma Saddle NSMB AndrewM (8).JPG

The kit includes soft and firm elastomer shock absorbing units meant to be swapped with the stock 'regular' firmness at the rear mounting position. For most of the test period I just rode the regular setup.

BikeYoke Sagma Saddle NSMB AndrewM (7).JPG

I don't see the point of the firm elastomer, as with SQLab's Active setup I'd just run a less expensive non-active saddle. I tested the soft and the medium. Depending on the process they're lightning fast to change or a bit of a time-eating wormhole.

So, how does it work? The Sagma has rails that attach to your seat post like any other standard saddle. As a quick aside, I tested it on four different dropper clamps with zero real issues but it is a bit of a tighter fit getting it mounted on the dropped clamps of the OneUp V2. It also has a base like any saddle, in this case, an extra stiff one, and it's where the base meets the rails that the magic happens. The magic being two elastomer shock absorbers.

It's easy to see how the suspension system functions just by standing behind my bike, grabbing the saddle, and giving it a firm up-then-down side-to-side and twist and what's really cool is that it's immediately noticeable on the trail from the very first ride. Assuming the saddle shape and fairly generous padding work for you, the suspension action will be appreciated. That's not to say that everyone will perceive value in a 155 USD saddle no matter how much it moves, but for folks with the Elizabeths (or Benjamins) to spare, the saddle is definitely doing something.

The soft elastomer is certainly softer than the other two, but I think if I was BikeYoke I would have stuck with a single, regular rate front and rear and come up with a more permanent solution for fixing the saddles to the rails. All of the comfort, less of the complexity of three bolts per attachment or six bolts total for those doing the math at home.

Koda Comparison


The most expensive saddle can be useless if it doesn't fit your personal requirements." - BikeYoke

I was immediately right at home riding the Sagma saddle shape and I was fairly certain that was going to be the case before I even put it on my bike. And, frankly, if I was designing a saddle shape the WTB Koda is where I would start as well. To be clear, I have no knowledge at all of how the Sagma's shape came to be and I don't really care. I'm just saying that if BikeYoke had called me to design the deck for their new saddle I would have ordered up a Koda in medium and sent it to them.

Interestingly, as similar as the fit is between the saddles, the nose of the BikeYoke disappears to a greater extent, or to put it another way the saddle feels shorter even though the measurements are similar. The Sagma required more tweaking to get it just-so and I ended up with the nose tilted a bit more upwards than on the WTB.

Also, as similar as they are in 145mm (Koda) and 142mm (Sagma) sizes, I think it's interesting that where WTB makes a 145mm and 150mm version of their every-person saddle, BikeYoke has chosen to go with a 130mm and 142mm as far as width options. This is a head-scratcher for me personally to such an extent that I had to phone a few shop friends who have set up a lot more bikes than I have. Collectively, mountain and road, we've sold significantly more wide (150-155mm) saddles than narrow (130mm) ones. Hopefully in the future BikeYoke will add another width option for those with wider sit bones.

I've long loved WTB's top-end saddle materials, which consist of their DNA padding and microfiber cover. They have good support, don't absorb sweat and water, and they actually run notably cooler on a hot and sweaty day compared to cheap saddles, believe it or not.

I'm no stranger to top-quality saddle coverings having ridden a range of SQLab saddles, Fizik saddles, Selle Italia saddles, and so on. It probably comes as no surprise to anyone who's handled BikeYoke's Revive dropper, but the material quality of the Sagma covering is just that little bit nicer than anything I've handled. I'd love to see other companies adopting their "idbeads™ foam technology with low-speed rebound properties" and "PU-Skin covering" on their top-end saddles.

If the Sagma system and materials appeal but you're wary of investing in a top-dollar saddle without sitting on one, then ask your local shop about investing in a saddle library* program. Barring that, if you have a friend with a WTB Koda (and I'd be surprised if you didn't) give it a quick try. I suspect that close to 100% of folks who like the fit of the Koda will appreciate the fit of the Sagma.

*I'm aware that Sidesaddle is far from the first shop to offer a saddle library, but their extensive catalogue, attitude toward the program, and funding model is the one I would R&D if I ran a bike shop.

The Teardown

To be clear, I really, really like how the Sagma saddle fits, rides, and feels or I wouldn't have gone through this level of effort to make it work for me. I would have just panned it as the creakiest saddle I've ever ridden and that would be one more German design team out to get me. But, this platform works incredibly well for me in terms of basic fit and my back is a huge believer in the suspension system, especially when eating miles while seated on my hardtail.

In the end, I only had to go to stage 2 of my plan to fix the creaking and loosening of the hardware. I pulled out all six bolts, cleaned them and the interfaces thoroughly to remove the Blue Loctite compound that comes stock from the factory, and applied Red Loctite compound instead. Creaking and loosening resolved. My next step was to go Green with high-strength sleeve retainer and I would have absolutely gone there if necessary.

BikeYoke Sagma Teardown Saddle NSMB AndrewM (2).JPG

The rail system. No change to saddle position is required to swap elastomers, or fully clean and re-Loctite the system. No creaking or loosening since my teardown.

BikeYoke Sagma Teardown Saddle NSMB AndrewM (1).JPG

Photo of the BikeYoke Sagma saddle's undercarriage. You can clearly see how the base could be easily adapted to a range of popular saddle shapes without changing the suspension system.

BikeYoke Sagma Teardown Saddle NSMB AndrewM (3).JPG

I personally think the Sagma should come stock with a stronger thread-locking compound. In my mind, elastomer swap-ability should rate much lower than worry-free, noise-free, performance.

I'd be interested in hearing from anyone who has purchased a Sagma who hasn't had a combination of noise and bolts loosening from the factory. I know at 190lbs+ and pushing hard on the pedals that I'm creating more loads than a lighter rider spinning gears but I still have a hard time picturing the system working perfectly with the stock assembly method.

If you too have a Sagma you want to love, then here's your solution. I can only speak for my experience working in shops, but if you purchased your BikeYoke saddle from your local I'm confident in saying they'll clean it up and hit it with a little Loctite Red for no charge. At least that would be the case in any shop I've worked in. If you bought it online I'm sure your local would still be happy to help, just expect to pay for their time - or head down to the hardware store and buy yourself some Red Loctite to go with the Blue Loctite you already have kicking around. It's useful for all sorts of stuff.

I-Beam, You-Beam

The one thing about the Sagma saddle that perplexes me a bit is why it has a bolt-on rail structure at all. In a world with a million and three options for good saddles, never mind the gazillion gooch guillotines, it strikes me that a significant percentage of Sagma sales probably go to owners of BikeYoke dropper posts. And if that's correct, then there certainly exists an opportunity to ditch the rails and some portion of the eight bolts (six for the saddle and two for the post head) and all the potential creaking and bolt-checking associated with them.

An I-Beam apparatus would be simpler, lighter weight, and offer a greater range of adjustment. Not only that, the Sagma eliminates the main issue folks have with I-Beam saddles, which is they find them overly harsh and stiff, thanks to the suspension system. SDG has previously licensed I-Beam to other manufacturers, or the smart folks at BikeYoke could have simply come up with their own system.

It may not be possible to get an I-Beam system as low as a rail system in terms of OneUp-esque dropped heads making for lower stack height and, therefore, more drop on bikes with a tight fit. But OneUp has patented that design so no one else is within a centimetre anyways.

Kona Explosif Ti Mullet IBeam NSMB AndrewM.JPG

Pardon the crappy photo. Here's my single speed in 2015, a titanium Kona Explosif mullet with a 100mm SR Suntour Auron 34. The dropper post is a Gravity Dropper with an SDG I-Beam head.

In Motion

The ideal candidate for a Sagma saddle is going to have bought into the idea that spending a bit of extra money initially for a noise-canceling product creates value in terms of a more comfortable riding experience. I see enough SQLab Active saddles and Rev grips in the wild to know that the market certainly exists.

On top of that, they aren't going to mind an added layer of complexity over a flex system, and here the stealthy appearance of their elastomer suspension system will be an easier sell the same way that the Rev grips' stashed suspension system makes them a normal purchase compared to say a Fasst Flexx bar. At this time BikeYoke is also only offering one deck, in two widths, so that purchasers are also going to prefer a short length, medium padded, supportive yet not hard saddle like the WTB Koda.

BikeYoke Sagma Saddle NSMB AndrewM (2).JPG

The cover and padding materials are absolutely tops. This is the boring black-on-black but BikeYoke offers the Sagma with a range of graphic colours including a very-80s pink.

BikeYoke Sagma Teardown Saddle NSMB AndrewM (4).JPG

The suspension system was far from faff-free but now that it's working on silent mode I'm very happy with the product. Even if anyone who notices the bolts asks me if it creaks.

A Few Notes from Tester Two - Cam McRae

I've been riding the Sagma on my Yeti for as long as Andrew has on his bikes and many of our experiences align. I didn't however experience any saddle creak. My bolts did come loose however, and I ended up losing one. Luckily a rotor bolt is a suitable replacement. I don't have any Red Loctite at home but a re-application of Blue has mostly done the trick for me. I just checked my bolts and after a couple of months of riding, including a recent day in the Silverstar Bike Park, they were only a little loose.

sagma-cam-3.jpg

A little patina is developing, but not signs of premature wear.

I haven't noticed the suspension element of the Sagma as much as Andrew, but I have noticed its absence. On rides with long climbs on the Norco Sight eMTB I've been riding, equipped with a generously padded SM-10 E-specific perch, I've gone back to wearing the dreaded lycra diaper. My femur heads start to ache on that saddle but I've never had that experience with the Sagma. I suspect this is because of the way the Sagma's suspension allows the shell to tilt towards the leg that is applying power, decreasing pressure. It's also at least partially related to the fact that I stand regularly on my mountain bikes, temporarily relieving pressure, while honking on an eMTB's pedals is entirely unproductive. A 25-minute effort while entirely seated on my mountain bike never happens but it's common with the electric version.

sagma-cam.jpg

If you hate reassembling the head of your dropper by reaching under your saddle, this takes much of the frustration out of the task.

Something I appreciate about the Sagma's unique construction is that it allows you to assemble the head of your dropper post without fishing under the shell with your fingers. It might take a little longer but it's less frustrating overall. About the only thing I don't appreciate about the Sagma's shape is the cutout in the rear section, which I assume is to make way for designs that allow saddle to rear wheel contact. I like the end of my saddle to be as blunt and smooth as possible to decrease injury potential and severity when the inevitable front end impact occurs, while you are simultaneously dangling your naughty bits behind your ass pedestal. I noted this while I was installing the saddle and several weeks later I ran into the bank of a trail, jamming my thigh into one of the two bulges, eventually leaving a bruise in that shape. A direct and more central hit would have been disastrous.

sagma-cam-4.jpg

A direct hit likely wouldn't be so bad, but anything slightly offset will cause some damage, as I learned.

Like Andrew, I am very fond of the Sagma. It has become my new favourite saddle and I intend to keep using it for years to come.

And now back to Señor Major...


For the quality of materials and performance, I think the 130 EUR | 155 USD | 195 CAD investment will pay off for folks who like a top-quality saddle in addition to those who benefit from the suspension system. And really, in this case, that's probably everyone whether it's just adding a degree of comfort over a long day or actually helping to alleviate discomfort.

On my hardtail, on trails where the narrower width compared to other noise-canceling saddles is nice for descending, I'll happily keep running the Sagma. It's a close match in shape and padding for what is historically my favourite fitting mountain bike saddle with an added upside. If it was stolen tomorrow I would spend my own scratch to replace it - albeit with a pink one - and that's with the full awareness that in its current form it is not a plug-and-play product. Plenty more information at BikeYoke, and if you have any questions feel encouraged to hit me in the comments below.

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Comments

JVP
+1 Cam McRae
JVP  - July 21, 2021, 9:50 p.m.

Interesting, for sure. Too narrow for my build, and the Koda = numbnuts for this sensitive dude.   

Give the Fabric Line S Elite Flat a try sometime. So good! Kinda cheap and not all that durable in a crash, but so so so comfy for those who need a wider seat and struggle with the numbs.

Reply

AndrewMajor
+1 JVP
Andrew Major  - July 22, 2021, 7:09 a.m.

I’ve had an okay time with some Fabric saddles (and not others) but don’t think I’ve ridden that Line S. Will check it out if I have a chance, thanks!

Have you tried any of the saddles from SQLab? Maybe a 60X, maybe a 611 Active?

Reply

JVP
+1 Andrew Major
JVP  - July 22, 2021, 8:11 a.m.

Yep, a big fan of the SQ 611 Active, I’ve used them based on your recco on both the urban and mtb. 

Had to switch it up due to a bruised tailbone. That bump up in the back of the SQ saddle was an issue when dropping the saddle. I also get some saddle sores maybe from the firmness, and wider nose, of the 611.

This is the only Fabric saddle that comes close to working for me. It looks funny, but is brilliant.

Reply

AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - July 22, 2021, 8:21 a.m.

That’s interesting you mention Firmness. I have a couple friends who loved the 611 Active except they had to wear a chamois for medium + rides. The 610 Ergolux proved much softer but the covering isn’t as durable.

I’d agree there’s less separation once the saddles dropped but I secretly like it as it forces me over the front of my bike a bit more :-). Shhh.

The Line S Elite Flat looks a lot like a WTB Deva. I’ll see if I can get my sit bones on one.

Reply

YDiv
+2 Andrew Major kcy4130
YDiv  - July 22, 2021, 12:18 a.m.

Sagma.....

Sounds like the start of a bad joke haha.

Interesting point with the saddle creak. Hopefully Stefan (@Sacki) can come in and drop some knowledge/extra info, as he's done with previous posts on the droppers.

Reply

sacki
+4 Pete Roggeman DancingWithMyself hotlapz Marc Fenigstein
sacki  - July 23, 2021, 5:51 a.m.

I can. ;-)

First of all I would like to thank Andrew and Cam for this really extensive test and review of our saddle(s).

While I obviously did not like everything I read (;-)) I always appreciate honest real-life, real-worl feedback and it f there is a problem, I should be mentioned.

I have to say, that we barely hear from customers about creaking saddles and we've sold a ton of them so far.

Of course, creaking is something we knew would be the biggest fear of customers and we knew we had to avoid this issue from the beginning. We wouldn't have come out with the SAGMA, if we were not sure, that creaking is not more of an issue (more less so) than on any other saddle on the market.

...to be continued below...

Reply

sacki
+2 Pete Roggeman hotlapz
sacki  - July 23, 2021, 5:52 a.m.

...However, in our first production run in early 2020 we had some issue with the covering and we only had little number of saddles in the market. We then took our time (several months) to find a new process for covering and slightly changed the layer composition on our covering.

When we then did the first bigger production batch of the SAGMAs (in early 2021, if I remeber correctly out of the top of my head), we found out (after a few weeks after delivery), that sometimes bolts needed to be re-tightened, although we had used properly calibrated torque tools and blue loctite during installation on all of them.

So after thinking and evaluating we figured what happened was following:

The bumpers are made of carbon reinforced Nylon. Now when you apply pressure on this material (or on any material for that matter) for a longer period of time, it will creep.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Creep_(deformation)

So lets say you torque the bumper bolts to spec with 2Nm. The bumper material, however will slightly deform/compress under the pressure of the bolt head over several days, thus losing pre-tension on the bolted connection - et voilà, the bolt will not be at 2Nm anymore, although it did not move. You can not really measure this deformation as it is too little, but the result remains, nevertheless.

...to be continued below...

Reply

sacki
0
sacki  - July 23, 2021, 5:51 a.m.

This comment has been removed.

sacki
+3 Pete Roggeman DancingWithMyself Marc Fenigstein
sacki  - July 23, 2021, 5:51 a.m.

However, in our first production run in early 2020 we had some issue with the covering and we only had little number of saddles in the market. We then took our time (several months) to find a new process for covering and slightly changed the layer composition on our covering.

When we then did the first bigger production batch of the SAGMAs (in early 2021, if I remeber correctly out of the top of my head), we found out (after a few weeks after delivery), that sometimes bolts needed to be re-tightened, although we had used properly calibrated torque tools and blue loctite during installation on all of them.

So after thinking and evaluating we figured what happened was following:

The bumpers are made of carbon reinforced Nylon. Now when you apply pressure on this material (or on any material for that matter) for a longer period of time, it will creep.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Creep_(deformation)

So lets say you torque the bumper bolts to spec with 2Nm. The bumper material, however will slightly deform/compress under the pressure of the bolt head over several days, thus losing pre-tension on the bolted connection - et voilà, the bolt will not be at 2Nm anymore, although it did not move. You can not really measure this deformation as it is too little, but the result remains, nevertheless.

Reply

sacki
+4 Pete Roggeman DancingWithMyself hotlapz Marc Fenigstein
sacki  - July 23, 2021, 5:53 a.m.

...The saddles, which we sent to NSMB for the review were assembled before we found this out. That should be the reason, why the bolts initially came loose and maybe also caused the creaking.

So once the material has settled, the bolts should not become loose anymore. We have then changed the assembly process so this will not happen anymore.

What I am wondering about is, what Andrew said, that they kept getting loose. If they do come loose, they should only come loose once and after that it should be OK, especially if loctite was applied. The blue loctite, which we use in assembly is usually more than enough. That's odd and I am not sure why.

What I can say is (and I am being really honest), that we barely hear of bolts keep getting loose or of any noticeable complaints about creaking. So far we are very peased with the feedback we are receiving from customers and from media.

So, of course it sucks for that Andrew had this issue, especially  during a review, but it is what it is. It was his experience, and then he needs to write about it. That is perfectly correct and absolutely fair.

Generally, the article is still very positive for me, because even these unusual issues he could solve very easily.

So, Thank you very much again!

...to be continued below

Reply

sacki
+5 Pete Roggeman DancingWithMyself hotlapz Marc Fenigstein Cam McRae
sacki  - July 23, 2021, 5:54 a.m.

...The point about the unneccessity of exchangeable rails I will definitely keep in mind, although this is indeed one more feature we thought could distinguish the saddle frokm others.

Most of my riding buddies managed to ben the rails of their saddles at least once - no matter shich brand or model. I have broken carbon rails myself, I have bend steel rails - shit happens. If you manage to bend the rails ona SAGMA, you can easily replace them. That is one of the ideas of exchangeable rails.

And I would like to mention again, that the creaking is not really an issue in the overall perspective. Not from what we receive from customers as feedback.

For what it's worth:

Here is a link to a German forum-thread about the SAGMA with hundreds of comments, also giving feedback and there is barely anything mentioned about creaking.

https://www.mtb-news.de/forum/t/bikeyoke-sagma-mtb-sattel-ausprobiert-wenn-der-hueftoeffner-mit-koernern-flext.941006/page-14#posts

If it's inappropriate to place the link here, please feel free to delete it, I just thought it might be interesting.

Reply

David.Max
+2 DancingWithMyself Cam McRae
David.Max  - July 23, 2021, 8:10 a.m.

Thanks for your honest and straightforward replies Sacki. I always appreciate it when manufacturers provide no BS info in the comments. I also wanted to say that I like the idea of replaceable rails so long as creaking isn't a typical issue. The more we can shift towards repairing things, rather than replacing them, the better!

A couple questions: 

Based on your companies market, I'd imagine that you designed this saddle primarily for MTB; is there a reason that you decided not to protect the corners of the saddle with kevlar? I'm always a bit concerned about tearing an expensive saddle in a crash when it doesn't have that kind of protection. 

Since the rails on the saddle are interchangeable, I was wondering what your thoughts are on the I-beam idea that Andrew mentioned in his review? It seems like an opportunity to offer a pretty slick integrated system with your post.

Reply

AndrewMajor
+1 DancingWithMyself
Andrew Major  - July 23, 2021, 8:46 a.m.

I will comment that the material is much tougher than it looks and the rigid base helps too. I’ve put my bike down too many times lately and it’s unscathed.

sacki
0
sacki  - July 25, 2021, 1:15 a.m.

The protected edges are something we've been thingking about, too. However, in all our testing and testriding, the material proved to be extremely sturdy. We chose this material because I knew it from my Adidas soccer boots, which use a siliar material:

https://www.intersport.de/schuhe/fussballschuhe/rasen-fussballschuhe/143072/adidas-fussball-schuhe-stollen-predator-18.1-sg/?number=4059809025680&gclid=Cj0KCQjwl_SHBhCQARIsAFIFRVW5l92KVXInByZDWAXvj2DskCPWx8sZc22xbKz6-ryVoK5lbz9ebdUaAuDBEALw_wcB
I was surprised of how much this extremely think material can take a beating, even from other metal studs. can take a beatiSo we knew the base metarial and tried to copy the same composition.

I-Beam was not a real option for us, and the reason is very simple: While the SAGMA's suspension concept could possibly live with the almost non-existing flex/comfort of the I-Beam, the I-Beam design had very specific reuirements on post head design. Making a valve underneath the I-Beam design for instance is basically impossible. 
But obviously the main reason is that we DO want our saddle to be compatible with basically any normal post and not only work with our posts. I am not a fan of proprietary designs, if it does not have a clear advantage. 
And as I said, I can not sa, that the bolts or the creaking is a real problem. Otherwise we would have heard much more from customers about it. You would definitely read about it in the comments in the IBC-forum link, which I send before. ;-)

AndrewMajor
+2 DancingWithMyself Cam McRae
Andrew Major  - July 23, 2021, 8:45 a.m.

Cam had no creaking related to his bolts coming loose and I certainly could put my experience down to a combo of loose bolts + our very dry dusty conditions. 

I think replaceable rails are brilliant. And now that my bolts are locked in tight I love the Sagma.

That said, in reference to the number of customer complaints about loose bolts, I turn wrenches part time and the % of bikes with throttle-loose lock-on grips (that I can pull straight off the bar) is shocking. The one Sagma I’ve seen through the shop had very loose bolts as well (no creaking) and it’s hard not to draw the conclusion that it would be the same for any saddle someone actually took a T-25 tool to. 

That’s very sweet if it’s solved for later production runs because the saddle rides brilliantly and the potential for shapes with this design is almost unlimited. But at this time I’d stand by my recommendation to ditch the multiple rates and really lock(tite) that hardware down.

Thanks for your open and honest comments Sacki!

Reply

sacki
+1 Andrew Major
sacki  - July 25, 2021, 1:21 a.m.

The bolts which attach the bumpers to the shell are torqued to spec @ 2NM only. That is not much and one should not overtorque it with more than 2.5Nm.
The important thing is to use loctite. Blue is enough and stronger is also OK, as long as you can open it again. ;-)
Even with the blue loctite, you will notice, that the loctite did its job, when you notice the sound and feeling of the glue breaking loose when opening the bolts.

pete@nsmb.com
+2 DancingWithMyself Cam McRae
Pete Roggeman  - July 23, 2021, 10:41 a.m.

Thanks for your feedback and thoughts, Sacki!

Reply

Bikeryder85
+1 Andrew Major
Bikeryder85  - July 22, 2021, 3:18 a.m.

Thanks for this! I am a WTB fan (volt currently) so this looks interesting...I need to try the Koda tho, I think it is based off of the volt if I remember correctly....

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AndrewMajor
+1 DancingWithMyself
Andrew Major  - July 22, 2021, 7:07 a.m.

Like the way the Deva & Devo share similarities? I’m not sure about Koda v. Volt.

I don’t love-love the Volt. Generally I’d wear a chamois with it, at least for medium+ rides, where the Koda I don’t. Not offensive, just not as comfy for me.

Would be curious to hear your comparison!

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Bikeryder85
+1 Andrew Major
Bikeryder85  - July 22, 2021, 7:39 a.m.

I think I heard that from an interview with the founder of wtb, he started with a volt shell then moved to the Koda shape of today...don't quote me though! I'll have to find a Koda and send a comparison...I have narrowish sit bones so I love the volt, been on it for 3 bikes now!

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velocipedestrian
+2 Andrew Major Cr4w
Velocipedestrian  - July 22, 2021, 3:34 a.m.

Hiding behind the Explosif, a little Fox wears its head on backwards... 

I'm not this far along the saddle library reading list, but it does motivate me to track down a Koda.

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AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - July 22, 2021, 7:01 a.m.

Hahaha. Good eye. That’s not the Easter Egg in that photo I thought I’d be talking about. It was just a chassis to show off how smooth the green SKF low friction seals are from when they launched their own branded line. 

Koda is a great starting point.

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velocipedestrian
+1 Andrew Major
Velocipedestrian  - July 22, 2021, 10:06 p.m.

Intrigued, the only other thing making my spidey-sense tingle is the dropper lever.

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AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - July 23, 2021, 8:55 a.m.

Huh. Well, the dropper lever is just a Fox Doss (the first great dropper remote) with a rotor bolt and nut fixing the cable end since the head is at the post.

I’m a bit torn between not wanting to be a tease and also hating smart movies that think everyone’s an idiot and spend the last five minutes deconstructing themselves.

There’s not even a punny hint that won’t just give it away.

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ackshunW
+1 Andrew Major
ackshunW  - July 23, 2021, 7:12 a.m.

Haha I’ll bite...! I agree, dropper lever looks...... big? 

Other than that I’m stumped. The cinder block looks regulation. Frame already identified.

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AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - July 23, 2021, 9:03 a.m.

It’s not the lowered Auron, purple Ti slider bolts (same ones as my Walt)…

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Gbergevin
+1 Andrew Major
Gbergevin  - July 22, 2021, 6:19 a.m.

I've got the first version of this, before colors/extra decorations on the cover - first impression was good, but I quickly found it was causing more numbness than my longer/harder/flatter saddles. IT's been on a shelf for a year or so since I first tried SQLab 611s.

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AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - July 22, 2021, 7:04 a.m.

Strokes for folks. I did find I had to run Sagma more nose up than expected to get comfy. As with the Koda, the short length especially isn’t for everyone/every bike.

Out of curiosity, since SQLab is still a relative niche, is there a WTB saddle you like? Just always building a web of comparative saddle enjoyment. 

Cheers!

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Dogl0rd
+11 kcy4130 YDiv Pete Roggeman khai Cr4w cole128 DancingWithMyself Timer hotlapz Cam McRae Endur-Bro
Dogl0rd  - July 22, 2021, 9:27 a.m.

I have a suspension saddle, it's called a RockShox Reverb.

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YDiv
+2 Andrew Major Dogl0rd
YDiv  - July 22, 2021, 11:40 a.m.

Underrated comment

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pete@nsmb.com
+1 Dogl0rd
Pete Roggeman  - July 22, 2021, 12:17 p.m.

Haha - instantly turns ANY saddle into a suspended saddle.

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AndrewMajor
+2 Dogl0rd Pete Roggeman
Andrew Major  - July 22, 2021, 12:17 p.m.

Hahahaha. Poor Reverb.

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TristanC
+2 Andrew Major Pete Roggeman
TristanC  - July 22, 2021, 10:32 a.m.

I've been using a Sagma for ~1 year with no creaking from the elastomers. It did start to creak at the saddle rails to dropper interface, but I cleaned that off with alcohol and it stopped. I did, however, manage to bend the rails slightly somehow... I'm really not sure how that happened at 165lbs on a hardtail. You can buy new ones from Bikeyoke, but I'm avoiding that until it becomes a problem.

The suspension or the shape or the beads do the trick for me, I ride ultra endurance and haven't had any issues, including a 250-mile, 36-hour ride last weekend with no chamois.

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AndrewMajor
+1 TristanC
Andrew Major  - July 22, 2021, 12:17 p.m.

Cam didn’t experience creaking either but did have issues with the hardware coming loose regularly (as did I pre-red loctite). Did you have any experience with hardware coming loose. 

Definitely a super comfy perch  (for those who find the shape works for them).

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TristanC
+1 Andrew Major
TristanC  - July 23, 2021, 7:04 a.m.

The hardware hasn't fallen out, but I also haven't checked it... I installed it late August last year and have ridden it ~2000 miles since them. I'll check it when I service my Revive next week.

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AndrewMajor
+1 TristanC
Andrew Major  - July 23, 2021, 9:04 a.m.

Thanks, would be very curious to know. If it is, then I highly recommend red loctite.

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TristanC
+1 Andrew Major
TristanC  - Aug. 1, 2021, 3:05 p.m.

Checked it today and they're not loose. Not super tight, but with a 2 N-m spec, it's hard to tell what's right. No creaking either way.

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AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - Aug. 1, 2021, 6:34 p.m.

Awesome; thank you for following up.

pete@nsmb.com
+1 TristanC
Pete Roggeman  - July 22, 2021, 12:18 p.m.

When you do super long rides with no chamois, do you also do without chamois cream? Asking because as I gear up for BCBR and longer rides, I'd rather avoid both, but don't know if it's wise - or realistic - and wondering about others' experiences.

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Vikb
+2 TristanC Andrew Major
Vik Banerjee  - July 22, 2021, 2:20 p.m.

I don't use padded shorts or cream and ride all day. I don't have a particularly "hard" butt, but choice of saddle, underwear/shorts and riding position provide the comfort. Experimentation is key as what's comfortable for 4hrs may not be comfortable at 12hrs or 18hrs.

Good luck with BCBR!

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pete@nsmb.com
+1 Andrew Major
Pete Roggeman  - July 23, 2021, 10:43 a.m.

Thanks, Vik.

Here's hoping BCBR stages for me are a lot closer to 4 hrs than 12!

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TristanC
+1 Andrew Major
TristanC  - July 23, 2021, 7:09 a.m.

I use chamois cream on rides over ~8 hours as an additional preventative. For me, chafing happens when I get a damp undercarriage from sweat/rain/whatever; keeping myself dry is key. Loose shorts and underwear allow some airflow and work well for me. The chamois cream also seems to help keep it at bay, but it does make it feel like you pooped your pants.

I switched to the no-chamois camp after a 33-hour ride last year where my diaper got soaked in a thunderstorm and I had the worst chafing I've ever experienced. Think "hard to sit in a car seat to drive 400 miles home" bad.

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AndrewMajor
+1 TristanC
Andrew Major  - July 23, 2021, 9:07 a.m.

Ahh. That’s the kind of chafing the Vikings would have written three-day-long epic poems about!

Chamois cream with underpants hey? Is there a lot of obvious leakage. I’m in the no-chamois camp except for long hot-or-wet (so sweat or wet) rides on the cargo bike where I sit a long time. But always curious about ways to avoid diapering up.

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TristanC
+2 Pete Roggeman Andrew Major
TristanC  - July 23, 2021, 10:27 a.m.

No leakage, but I don't apply a lot. A thin film of Chamois Butt'r when I start and then reapplication every 3-4 hours does the trick. It stops feeling weird almost immediately. It is a little hard to apply with underpants unless you're comfortable dropping trou in the middle of the trail, just hard to get access without smearing it all over your butt... but propriety goes out the window as soon as I'm in the backcountry.

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pete@nsmb.com
+1 Andrew Major
Pete Roggeman  - July 23, 2021, 10:44 a.m.

Yikes. Of course, the problem with wearing loose clothing is chafing comes back to the fore. I don't mind chamois cream all that much, tbh, but would rather not use it if I don't have to.

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mammal
+1 Pete Roggeman
Mammal  - July 22, 2021, 12:43 p.m.

Even before I finish reading this review, that fifth paragraph was a pleasure to read! So funny.

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AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - July 23, 2021, 9:07 a.m.

Cheers!

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Jdee
+2 Andrew Major Cam McRae
Justin Dodd  - July 22, 2021, 5:50 p.m.

Cam, interesting to hear your comment about the saddle reducing the femur head ache you experience. I get this pain quite often and haven’t really figured out what to do to relieve the issue.  Might have to try this saddle out and see if it helps. Cheers!

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cam@nsmb.com
0
Cam McRae  - July 26, 2021, 10:35 p.m.

TBF it's only a guess and I'd need to do some A/B testing to confirm, which should be easy enough. If I do some long rides on the Sagma with the Sight VLT without getting that persistent dull ache that should answer my question.

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Zornitta
0
Zornitta  - July 23, 2021, 5:52 a.m.

Next review will be with the Ergon SC Core Prime?

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Zornitta
0
Zornitta  - July 23, 2021, 2:07 p.m.

SMC

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Larrabee
+2 Andrew Major Cam McRae
Larrabee  - July 23, 2021, 6:34 a.m.

Whoa!  Three cheers and 5 stars on Tripadvisor for simply _mentioning_ green Loctite.  Truly, it is the nuclear option for thread-locking. 

Suggestion: a whole tech article on thread lockers. 

Here’s one: for threaded BBs, Loctite 567 pipe-thread sealant. It hardens in an anaerobic environment as usual, and has Teflon in it. I’ve been using it for 20 years, starting on a Ti frame. It’s great at preventing dissimilar-metal corrosion. 

In its hardened state, it’s a little tougher than dried toothpaste and has a bit of pliability. I’ve never had a problem removing a threaded BB with it — always used copiously. 

Cleaning out the female threads is not a horrible job — by chasing around the thread grooves with a dental pick (or bent nail in Vise Grips).  A small, very stiff wire brush is helpful  

It may be the cat’s meow if used on pressed-in BBs as well; I’ve never tested that application.

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AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - July 23, 2021, 9:12 a.m.

Cheers! 

In the distant past, there was a crank manufacturer that would recommend 567 for the interface between their one-side-fixed steel axle and the aluminum splines of the removable crank arm. It was actually great for keeping the cranks for coming loose.

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David.Max
+1 Andrew Major
David.Max  - July 23, 2021, 8 a.m.

Thanks for another great review Andrew. I really enjoy and look forward to your thoughtful bike nerdery!

You hinted at it in your review, but could you offer a more direct comparison of the SQ Lab 60X and 611, and the Sagma? If you were a reader shopping for a pricey new saddle, what would lead you to choose one over the other? I'm guessing that being smaller, the Sagma might allow for better mobility when it's dropped...

I want to buy one of these saddles soon; 140mm should be a good size for me, but I'm having a hard time making a decision.

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AndrewMajor
0
Andrew Major  - July 23, 2021, 9:25 a.m.

Thanks David,

So as you already hit on, the Sagma has a smaller profile and that could be better for descending. But, some riders may find they like how the wings of the SQ position then out of the saddle so even that’s not an absolute deciding factor.

The cover materials on the Sagma are the best I’ve experienced but that’s not taking away from SQLabs quality/premium components and the 60X does have added protection at the wear points.

(You know where I’m headed here)

The Sagma has one shape/fit option in two sizes where the 14cm will make a lot of riders - but certainly not everyone - happy. I go back to sitting on a WTB Koda or even a Volt. If the Koda absolutely doesn’t work for you the Sagma won’t either.

SQLab offers four sizes across multiple models. You probably want a 60X or 611 Active and it’s easy to figure out your size but they still have a lot of options. 

So yeah, the proof is of course in the riding. If you have a good local shop you deal with you can always send them a link to my nerdy little piece on saddle libraries. I really wish more shops would adopt such a program.

Personally, I love the Sagma on my mountain bike but if I’m going to be sitting a long time the 611 Active is still my go-to. And despite being ~190lbs and riding it with no elastomer installed it’s still got great support.

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DancingWithMyself
+1 sacki
MuscogeeMasher  - July 23, 2021, 3:53 p.m.

Excellent info Andrew. What about the stack height of the saddles for those of us on a sqlab and right at the edge of dropper insertion?

The replaceable rails are really attractive to me. Only so many time you can bend an sqlab back sort of straight.

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hotlapz
+1 sacki
hotlapz  - July 23, 2021, 6:41 p.m.

I've been riding on a Sagma since the beginning of this year and I like it so much I'm considering buying one for my road bike. The Sagma is the only saddle I can ride up to 7th without going numb in all the wrong places.

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tdc_worm
+4 sacki DancingWithMyself YDiv Cam McRae
tdc_worm  - July 24, 2021, 7:34 a.m.

Couple of notes from my experience with this saddle:

#1 - some times it makes the rear tire feel vague when pedaling in small bump stuff...almost like you have a flat rear tire.  the saddle is squirming, not the tire.

#2 - my  seat rails are bent

#3 - interferes with the Reverb AXS battery/motor, not allowing for the saddle to be slammed forward, if desired.

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