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I am interested in potentially switching to a noseless seat (also called noseless saddle). Instead of buying one, can I simply reverse my conventional seat 180 degrees and sit on the edge of the new front (the former back) of the seat? I will only make contact with the new front of the seat, while the former nose (the new back of the seat) will just be there behind me and not be used or cause any harm.

I tried doing this on my bike and riding it for about a mile total, stopping periodically to adjust the angle of the seat and distance of the seat from the handlebars (sliding along the rails). So far, it feels consistent with descriptions I have read of using a noseless seat. I have included some photos.

I am interested in:

  1. Feedback, opinions, and analysis about this possible strategy.
  2. Somebody who has access to both a noseless and conventional seat testing out this strategy to see if the backwards conventional feels similar to the noseless. Please only do this if you feel safe and comfortable testing this out and also are interested in answering the question.

Other thoughts or possibly-relevant information:

  1. If I decide to use this possible solution permanently, I would find a conventional seat that is the correct width for my sit bones, which I have gathered is an important part of finding the right seat, regardless of whether it has a nose or not.
  2. I use my bicycle for commuting, going to the store, and similar outings, with round-trip distances in the 5-15 mile range.
  3. I am not asking if a noseless seat is good or bad. That topic has already been debated a lot online, I have noticed. I understand that some riders consider noseless seats to be a threat to safety and a gimmick solution to a problem caused by poor bike fit, while others consider noseless seats to be better for their health and comfort. Instead, taking it as given that I want to try using a noseless seat, I am asking if this reverse-seat is a viable option, because to me it seems no different than many noseless seats out there already (for example, if you take the portion of the reversed conventional seat that I would sit on and saw off the rest, it appears to me that we would end up with approximately same thing as the moon saddle advertised at https://www.moonsaddle.com).

Photos:

Cycle with reverse seat

Reverse seat with rider about to sit

Reverse seat with rider seated, rear rear rear view

Reverse seat with rider seated, side view

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    I've seen similar arrangements before. If it's comfortable and seems safe then go for it! Apr 11 at 21:26
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    The problem you will not be able to avoid is that the widest part of the saddle is moved forward a lot, and you are sitting forward of that (with a noseless saddle, the widest part is in the same place as a conventional saddle). So your body will be in a noticeably different position. The relationship between your knees and ankles will be different, etc. There's nothing stopping you from doing this, but I don't think it's equivalent to a proper noseless saddle.
    – Adam Rice
    Apr 12 at 0:13
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    Judging from the photos, you are sitting way too forward. The placement of the brake levers is unusual and looks really unconfortable.
    – ojs
    Apr 12 at 6:23
  • @ojs has a point. I would rephrase: if you want to move your sitting position forward to reduce the reach to the levers, then that's the wrong thing to do. You want to set the saddle position based on your leg position and preference - I prefer a further forward position than most cyclists. To change the reach and height of the bars, you can adjust the stem. The levers do objectively look very low on the bars, and I would recommend sliding them up regardless (this does require your handlebar tape to be rewrapped).
    – Weiwen Ng
    Apr 12 at 18:49
  • My goal is to sit on a noseless-equivalent seat, not to deliberately reduce seat-handlebar distance. Reduced seat-handlebar distance is an unwanted side effect that the reverse-seat strategy cannot overcome relative to buying a proper noseless seat, as @Adam Rice astutely pointed out (except perhaps by also rotating the seat post 180 degrees? I can't quite figure it out in my head...), which strikes me as the so-far best answer to my question. ojs and Weiwen Ng, thanks for the input about the reach/brakes. I have discussed conversion to flat handles/shorter stem with a local shop mechanic. Apr 12 at 20:43
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If it works for you then go ahead.

The risk might come in a lack of control when riding hard, like descending while off the saddle it is common to use the sides of the saddle against the inside of one's thighs to help control the bike.

Separately you might need to angle the nose up sufficiently to get a comfortable position on the now-leading edge

Lastly, its probably not an issue for you but a reversed saddle on a rental bike means this one is damaged and needs some kind of service so don't rent it.

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Sorry to be "that guy" but the rails of that saddle appear to be a fair distance beyond the recommended manufacturers limit.

Perhaps, you can fit it to the seat post as intended and simply spin the post in the frame by 90 degrees? Way back layback!

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    Note that (1) the seatpost head is angled and won't work well if reversed, (2) the clamping limits for the saddle rails are based on a rider who sits on the saddle the right way around and have no meaning for a reversed saddle.
    – juhist
    Apr 13 at 16:04

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