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I'm thinking of getting a new seat on my exercise bike

How can I ensure that the seat will fit?

Are there different types of fitting? How many types?

My one the bike seat involves 2 hexagonal bolts one on either side and it looks like it can slide if one is loosened, or turn if the other is loosened, and is still when both are tightened. What type is that? And would any of that type fit?

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1  
A picture might help –  freiheit Oct 14 '11 at 17:05
    
Is this a stationary bicycle? –  Neil Fein Oct 15 '11 at 14:35
    
@NeilFein yes stationary bike –  barlop Oct 15 '11 at 21:34
    
Hay, our first one! (I think.) Retagged. –  Neil Fein Oct 16 '11 at 15:52

3 Answers 3

To ensure the new saddle will fit, you should always test it before buying. Good shops will allow you test-rides or offer exchange if it's uncomfortable.

As a personal advice: Also include the (often underrated) leather saddles in your search. Many riders attest them superior comfort. A bit firm in the beginning, but they will adjust to your personal butt-shape.

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There are basically two types of seats: Seats with rails and seats without rails.

Seats with rails (two somewhat crooked metal bars running front-to-back under the seat) will fit the clamp in Mathew's photo or any fancier seat clamp. (For fancier ones generally the clamp is permanently attached to the top of the seat post (the part that slides up and down)).

Seats without rails generally have a built-in clamp, or in some cases may be more or less permanently attached to the seat post. These are "cost-reduced" seats, designed for cheap bikes and exercise equipment. They are not generally interchangeable without replacing the entire assembly.

You can replace the "without rails" seat with one that has rails if you get the necessary clamp or clamp-with-seatpost. The clamp will accept any brand/style of seat with rails, but there are several different diameters of seat posts, and you need to match the post diameter.

If your current seat doesn't have rails, your best bet is to take the entire seat assembly -- seat, clamp, and post -- to a bike shop, so that the seat post diameter can be matched.

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seat is definitely the type with rails. I just undid the seat a bit and pulled it off the post, so the clamp is on the rails but looks like it'd come off if unscrewing the holds. It's a schwinn viscount seat. I like your idea about taking the seat to a bike shop.. That said, I just measured the metal cylinder the post drops onto on the bike, and it is 2cm in diameter, are there many different sizes? –  barlop Oct 15 '11 at 9:26
    
well, about 2cm. –  barlop Oct 15 '11 at 9:57
    
With that type of clamp there are basically two sizes for the post end (though there may be small variations). One size is designed to fit the full diameter of the seat post, while the other is designed to fit a seat post with a smaller diameter section on top. (It sounds like you have the second type.) Generally there's enough "play" in the clamp bolt setup to allow for a variation of a few mm within those basic sizes. But, if you have a clamp-type seat, you shouldn't need to replace the clamp and/or seat post (unless you want to). –  Daniel R Hicks Oct 15 '11 at 12:45
    
(In this whole thing, the main "must fit" variable is the diameter of the seat post, where it fits into the bike frame at the top of the "seat tube". This must be correct within about 0.5 mm.) –  Daniel R Hicks Oct 15 '11 at 12:46

Essentially you have got one of these:

enter image description here

This is an older type of saddle clamp that was popular when seat posts were made from steel rather than alloy. Any saddle bought from a bike shop will fit. The general idea is that the bolt goes behind instead of in front of the post, you tighten it up on both sides so that the top of the seat is level and the seat being in the middle of the rails. Swapping over a seat can be a 'bit of a fiddle' as there isn't necessarily a lot of room under the seat to assemble all the bits and keep them in place whilst you do up the bolt.

As for saddle choice, you don't have to worry about weight, the elements or the seat getting damaged from being in accidents etc. Therefore you should be able to choose from the heavier/more comfortable seats to find something in budget.

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