Brooks B.68 Saddle - Available with Frameset or Bike Purchase Only. NOT SOLD OUT. We have tons of them.
These are NOT sold out -- we have them, but they're only available with frame set or bike purchase. Call or email to add one to your order.
First, we have to be clear about this. "Only with a new Frameset or COMPLETE bicycle purchase" is to be taken literally, in the old-fashioned, original definition of the word. If you took delivery on a bike YESTERDAY, we can't sell it to you.
Because that's the agreement we made with Selle Royal, the Italian parent of Brooks. It's the agreement which allowed us to get these B.68 saddles. All of our other models, we get through a U.S. distributor of Brooks, and we can .. sell them normally. They didn't stock the B.68 and for their own reasons which we are not questioning, they had no interest in importing it. Selle Royal didn't want to interfere with the U.S. distributor's sales (loyalty and support is admirable), but agree to sell these to us OEM, which is industry abbreviation for "original equipment for the manufacturer." When a bike maker or car maker or probably any other kind of maker puts something together out of many parts, and has the complete assembly done elsewhere, the parts are shipped in "easy to grab" fashion. These parts are OEM.
Big companies have different sales channels. OE (the M is often dropped) sales people have their own tasks, and wholesalers have their own. In this case, the guy there who went to bat for us was the OE sales guy, Carlo. An Italian Carlo who is not Carlo Ponti, but close: Carlo Piovan. He said he'd take care of us as long as we didn't sell them "aftermarket,"--retail. As long as we sold them only as OE on new bicycles. IF we do otherwise, Carlo looks bad and gets sad, then mad.
This is important to me. I assured Carlo (see below) that this is how we'd do it, and I will be true to that.
So, if you want to buy one, make a note at checkout saying "I'd like to also buy a B68" when you buy a frameset or complete bike thru the website, or tell/email one of our sales people.
About the B.68
It dates to the early 1900s. It's about 200mm wide, a bit more than an inch wider than a 170mm B.17, so it's better for upright riding. It's honey brown with black rails, no other options. It doesn't come in an aftermarket box with a congratulatory note for picking Brooks. It comes with "OE" packaging, which means minimal, so they're fast to grab on an assembly line. You still get the saddle, it won't come to you the standard overly fancy Brooks box; it'll be in the box if we're shipping to you, or on your new bicycle if you come by for pickup.