If you are putting together a new downhill bike, finding the right saddle is the perfect way to finish off your build. There are plenty of good looking saddles out there from brands like Deity, WTB, Ergon, and SDG to name a few. We think Deity is a pretty rad company and so we had our guy Max Morgan write up a review on the Deity Sidetrack Saddle that he rides on a few of his bikes. To learn more about the man behind Deity Components, listen to Vital MTB's Inside The Line Podcast with Eric Davies!
Deity Components introduced a completely new lineup of premium products in 2017 with all new handlebars, grips, stems, saddles, and seat posts. Deity has collaborated with industry leading saddle manufacturer SDG Components to utilize their patented I-beam technology found on their new I-Fly 2.0 saddle. For those who aren't familiar with the I-Beam system, it eliminates the traditional seat rails and replaces it with an I-Beam that is integrated into the bottom of the saddle. This second generation I-Beam platform uses an even lower profile, is stronger, and lighter weight. The Deity Sidetrack saddle is designed to be as low profile and lightweight as possible. The saddle uses Kevlar sides, EVA foam, and a synthetic top with gloss graphics designed to give you grip when seated. The sidetrack can only be mounted to a Deity Retina I-Beam seatpost or any of SDG I-Beam seatposts.
I've been riding the Deity Sidetrack saddle on both my downhill bike and my pumptrack bike. The Santa Cruz V10 is a full on downhill machine and is finished off with a full Deity kit . The V10 is riding on Fox suspension front and rear, Industry Nine Grade 300 wheels, and Maxxis tires.
The Sidetrack saddle also matches up nicely on the hardtail. On these kinds of bikes, the saddle is out of the way the entire time your are riding and is just there to sit down on when you aren't riding. My hardtail is also finished off with a full Deity cockpit with Deity Blacklabel handlebars, Deity Cavity Stem, and Deity Knuckleduster grips. The bike is running a Fox 831 fork, Industry Nine wheels, and Maxxis tires.
When you go to install your I-Beam saddle, make sure the seatpost is oriented the correct way. The seatpost could technically mount up either forwards or backwards but to get the most adjustment out of your saddle, make sure the minimum insertion height markings on the seatpost are pointing towards the back of the bike. The Sidetrack saddle goes on nice and easy. There is no fumbling with multiple pieces like you would do with a traditional railed seatpost. You loosen the clamp on the seatpost enough so the I-Beam can slide through, and then you lock it down in whatever position you want. The saddle gives you a huge range of adjustment front to back and also up and down. Use a 5mm allen key to lock down the saddle.
The Sidetrack is not comfortable to sit on and it's not meant to be. You wouldn't want to be sitting on this saddle climbing on your trail bike all day. It's intended to be used primarily on a downhill bike where you are rarely seated. A lightweight, low profile seatpost and seat setup is more important.
I've become a big fan of the SDG I-Beam design. It has been exactly what it's claimed to be; lightweight, low profile, and super adjustable. I tend to run my saddle height pretty high on my downhill bike, but because the seat tube angle on the V10 is very slack, most seats would buzz on the tire at bottom out. The buzz cut on the back of the saddle is notched out to keep the saddle off of the tire. Now I don't really have to worry about the seat buzzing the tire.
The Sidetrack saddle really does only weigh 154 grams! That's lighter than most carbon traditional railed seats. I'm not someone who is counting grams or even worried too much about weight, but the Sidetrack saddle matches practical performance with being lightweight. That's a win win.
If you are looking for a saddle for your trail bike, the Deity Sidetrack is not for you, and you should give the Deity Speedtrap saddle a look. The Sidetrack is not designed to be comfortable and I'm good with that. I think it's cool to see a downhill specific saddle.
Deity has collaborated with SDG Components, utilizing their patented I-Beam technology, to put together the Deity Sidetrack saddle. The Sidetrack, because of the I-Beam design, is highly adjustable and can pretty much fit on any downhill bike without having to worry about tire buzz. The low profile design keeps the saddle lightweight and out of the way when you need to get your weight behind the seat. The Sidetrack works great for any downhill or pump track bike. It's minimalistic layout looks clean and is perfect as a competition saddle. If you are looking for something a bit more comfortable, give the Deity Speedtrap saddle a look!
Max Morgan is 26 years old, and lives in Brevard, North Carolina. Max grew up in Atlanta, Georgia and started racing downhill at the age of 15. He has now been racing professionally for the last 8 years, competing in the UCI World Cup series and U.S. Pro GRT series. To learn more about Max, check out Max's rider spotlight here!