The announcement of the new Kris Holm Seat and Stiffener plate combination really caught my attention.
The XC GUNI handlebar I’ve been working on for several months mounts of the four front bumper bolts. On the older KH plastic seat there was way too much flex – the XC bars behave more like suspension handle bars. My solution was to use a Carbon Fibre seat base which works exceptionally well with the handle bar – stiff and light – but it’s also expensive and problematic, especially if you mess up the location of all the holes which you must drill yourself.
The new improved saddle along with the stiffener plate couldn’t have come along at a better time – provided they works as described.
The Stiffener Plate is surprisingly light at 74 grams, with a nice looking matte finish. Surprisingly also, the four longer sturdy bolts that come with the plate (great move including bolts vs having to buy them from a hardware store) are relatively heavy at 36 grams.
Not surprisingly, the plate is well… stiff! 🙂
The Stiffener Plate fits on the underside of both the front bumper (longer bolts used here) and seat post. Combined with the changes to the 2009 saddle all up it’s a very neat piece of design, but how stiff?
The stiffener plate isn’t compatible with older KH saddles due to significant difference in the curve of the saddle base as shown in this photo of the stiffener plate attached to an older saddle:
Is it stiff?
I took my GUNI Bar XC handle off the Carbon Fibre base and fitted it to the 2009 saddle/Stiffener plate combination. After a week of rides the short of it is that the 2009 saddle with Stiffener plate is definitely within the same ballpark re saddle flex felt through the handlebar as the Carbon Fibre base which is great news as it means it’s a viable alternative to the hassle and cost of the Carbon Fibre base (and concern of damaging it during UPD’s).
Great stuff KH!