Sofrider seat back mods
In an attempt to deal with sweaty back issues I recently bought a Ventisit http://www.ventisit.nl/en/ for the Sofrider. This is a distinct improvement in terms of ventilation on the (albeit very comfortable) seats that comes supplied with the bike. Still, it is not perfect and I have been wondering whether punching a series of holes in the seat back will assist with airflow, and with it the evaporation of sweat. Working on the theory that the area of low pressure behind me as I pedal along will cause there to be sucked in through the side of the seat pad and out through the holes at the back.
Does anyone have any experience of this? My principal concern is not to adversely affect the strength/structural integrity of the seat back. Any suggestions regarding the spacing and pattern of holes that could be used. Also the diameter. I had been thinking of 20 mm and using a Q-Max round hole cutter to punch the necessary holes.
I use four off 10 mm (3/8") layers of ventisit type pads from EMP industrial
?where the 600 mm * 21000 mm pad @ $90 Au (+10% GST for Aussies) will make 1.5 seat sets 4 thick.
I hot met the 4 pads together, and onto the existing stiff shaped high density rubber foam back (To keep the mesh expanded as very compressible in one direction)
The hot melt runs at 75 mm spacing, go across the minor axis of the diamond shapes, to stop the sideways compression.
I then put this into the standard Cruzbike seat cover, and use 100 mile tape to hold the cover back together.
This system is very comfortable, does NOT collapse in 2 years like exercise matting (from 3/8" to 1/16"), even for my light 110Kg (242 lbs) frame, acts like a mini shock absorber (four thick pads required as two gives no compression over bumps), and VERY GOOD ventilation, even on 40C (104 F) days over three days in the saddle in Canada last year.
I would try this method first before weakening the seat with holes, as you never know when on the next big decent, that you hit a large depression at a bridge junction, bottom the suspension out completely, get winded, and get airborne at 80 kph (50 mph), but still land safely. I then think that if I was on a DD bike with no suspension, all that extra load going into a 2 square inch area seat and flimsy seat post, what would have happened? This reassures me that a Cruzbike recumbent is the way to go!
ACS10 is difficult to find in the US.
I used 3 layers of http://www.ahh.biz/mesh/military/mesh_nylon_fabric_military_iotv.php to make a seat pad for my rans V3. It is available in 6mm/ quarter inch thickness.
I put 400 miles on the pad during cooler weather last fall so I can't comment meaningfully on the ventilation or durability yet. I think it's compacting a bit on the butt portion of the seat, but the back has good loft.
I'm probably going to get the V3 out again to ride some of the dirt roads that I avoid with the skinny tires on my Silvio. That'll put more miles on the pad too.
The seat pad I already have courtesy of ventisit.nl and very good it is too.
Having seen aluminium seats from Azub and Challenger which have plenty of holes knocked in them, I figured that the Cruzbike one could probably stand a few of its own without too much adverse effect. Apparently a 60 degree triangular pattern is strongest. Will give it a go and report back.