Saturday, March 17, 2012

Journey of the Boardwalk: Part 21 - Bontrager Evoke RL Saddle

This is the next instalment in the Journey of the Boardwalk, seems like this series will be never-ending! This time, there are no major upgrades, just a change of saddle for the Dahon Boardwalk X20-R.

A few months back, I was using the Rido LT Saddle, and I had written a review on it. At that time, I was still getting used to the saddle, and would give it more time to see if it is really suitable for my riding style. However, even after a couple of months on that saddle, I still could not get used to the hardness of the saddle. It was after one Tuas night ride of 50km that I felt I should be trying another saddle with more cushion.

Actually, the Rido LT saddle was not the saddle that came immediately after I changed from the Biologic Aria saddle. I had bought the Bontrager Evoke RL saddle which looks slimmer than the Biologic Aria saddle but still has quite a bit of cushion.

The Biologic Aria saddle on the left, the Bontrager Evoke RL saddle on the right.

I did not do a review of the Evoke RL saddle as I had used it for less than a month before the Rido LT saddle came out, and I switched over to the Rido LT saddle. However, I found that even with padded shorts, the Rido LT saddle can make the butt sore even after rides of only 40-50km. Maybe it is me, but it is not comfortable enough, even after I gave myself a few months to get used to the Rido LT saddle. Riding with shorts without padding is even worse, as the saddle is too hard.

As I said before, the Rido LT saddle is good if you always cycling with padded cycling shorts, and if you always pedal hard, there is less weight on the saddle. However, that is not my style, I will sometimes do leisure rides where I pedal lightly and don't use padded shorts. I had hoped that the Rido LT saddle would become more comfortable as I used it more, but unfortunately, that was not the case.

Prior to the NTU Bike Rally of 128km, I realised that I would have a really hard time if I used the Rido LT saddle. I remembered the Bontrager Evoke RL saddle and mounted it on another seatpost, so that I can swap between these two saddles easily for comparison. I did some training rides on the Evoke RL saddle, of distances of 70+ km. It felt much more comfortable than the Rido LT saddle, and that was the saddle I decided to use for the NTU Bike Rally 128km. That ride would give me the best opportunity to evaluate the comfort of the saddle.

I am pleased to say that the Bontrager Evoke RL saddle is much more suitable for my riding style, since it has more cushion to suit my more casual riding style. After the 128km cycled during NTU Bike Rally, I was pleasantly surprised to know that I had no butt pain at all. If a saddle can prevent butt pain even after going round island around Singapore, it is a good saddle! Seems that I have found my ideal saddle.

The Bontrager Evoke RL saddle. Looks ordinary, but does its job well! 

The Bontrager Evoke RL saddle is also relatively lightweight, weighing the same as the Rido LT road saddle at 230grams. Good balance between comfort and weight.

Comparison between Bontrager Evoke RL saddle and the Rido LT Road saddle.

The full lineup of saddles I have tried.

The Rido LT road saddle is not a bad saddle, but it is not suitable for my style of riding. It would be great for cyclists who go fast and do not put much weight on the saddle. As for me, I will be using the Bontrager Evoke RL saddle, good for all kinds of riding styles!


  1. Hello tylsteve,

    There are three width selections for the Bontrager Evoke RL saddle (128mm, 138mm, 148mm). Which one did you buy?


    1. I think it was the medium width saddle that i got.