Oddly if you want an hard bike saddle you have to spend more money than for a soft one... also leather saddles are very expensive.
In this instructable I'll show you how to refurbish an old saddle into a nice leather one, also very hard if you want...
Step 1: The old saddle
The saddle had a synthetic upholstery, which was not so good regarding trousers consumption... since that material is rather sticky, and the friction on the trousers fabric is very high. So I wanted to change the covering into smooth leather.
The other reason to work on this saddle, other than its very bad condition, was to harden its surface. This could be very unusual, but I'm pretty sure that on long routes, soft saddles are not comfortable, maybe some cyclists will prove me right...
Step 2: Removing the covering
Anyway, you obviously can leave the padding in place, and only substitute the synthetic covering with a leather upholstery.
With small pliers remove the metal staples and detach the covering.
If you want to keep the padding use a brush to wash and clean the surface, so to remove all the remained glue.
Step 3: And the padding
Here you can see the three layers of my saddle. There was an inside foam padding, followed by a gel shape, and finally a thin soft fabric to keep the gel in place. Gel is very funny... it adheres on everything and it reminds me a small gel octopus I had when I was a child, you threw it on the wall and it descended with strange movies...
After removing the three layers you have to clean the plastic shell, I used a metal sponge and it works very good, with also the result to obtain a rough surface to better glue the leather.