With the cheapening of Miyata saddles it looks like the new Velo saddle will certainly be popular … what great timing for Velo!
A couple of days ago I got a new Miyata saddle and, after seeing just how cheap it is and reading posts about the handle breaking, decided to try building my own handle. Here’s some photos of what I came up with:
I’m in the business of designing and building food processing equipment. In this business we use alot of UHMW polyethylene so my shop is full of it. It might be the ideal material for a handle because it just won’t break! I “torture tested” my first handle (I changed some dimensions for the second one) by screwing the handle to a piece of wood that beating on a rock with it.
I made the handle from white UHMW because that’s what I have most of but it’s available in black too. I’m going to make a black handle as well as a black rear bumper … should look pretty good with a black Roach cover.
When designing this handle I didn’t set out to do anything but make a simple, easy to machine replacement for the stock Miyata. I haven’t tried it yet so I can’t comment on how well it works but I don’t know why it wouldn’t be fine.
I’m thinking about offering this handle for sale … cheap … until my supply of small pieces of white UHMW runs out. If you have any interest please contact me privately by email.
nice work! hook me up with one and ill torture test it since i just busted my miyata handle…well it is cracked about halfway across from one side to the other. my e-mail address is KyleBMX4fun@aol.com. i like the sound of an all black handle and id love to have one so i dont have to buy a new seat. hehehe
Assuming you haven’t already made a lot of these, may I suggest a slight modification? One of the things about the Miyata handle that people always complain about is the fairly sharp corner on the front of the seat, where your fingers wrap around. if you could add more plastic to the front of the seat, and make the lower front corner rounder and larger, it would be a very comfortable handle.
Don’t feel under any obligation to listen to me, if this is more work than you want to do, but if you do modify the handles like that, I would be interested in buying a black one.
UHMW polyethylene is very tough. After finding a design that you like, the
model could be converted to a casting mold. A two part urethane would be
more flexible and any abraded areas (from UPD’s) would not be as rough.
Without UV inhibitors, black plastic will stand up to sunlight better than
I haven’t been able to test ride the new handle and seat because I need a seat post rail adapter to mount it on my 29er. Tonight I was able to get the rail adapter built, everything assembled and ridden. I had the usual problems with screws spinning in the WAY oversized square holes in the new seat base. In fact I could get only 3 of the 4 seat screws even close to tight and two of the three handle screws tight.
I gave the new handle a pretty good test with plenty of hopping, pulling up on climbs and UPD’s. I had to trim and round the lower corners of the handle because the corners were rubbing my legs. After the trim job it was fine.
I found myself wanting to put all four fingers in the “finger pocket” but it’s not quite wide enough for that. I think I’ll take Ben’s advice and leave the plastic thicker along the front but also widen the whole front of the handle so all four fingers will fit in comfortably.
The handle feels rock solid and unbreakable … unlike the new Miyata base. I’ll post photos of the next version when it’s done.