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post #1 of 19 Old Sep 22nd, 2012, 10:48 pm Thread Starter
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New padding in an old seat

Anybody ever tried putting new foam in their seats? I just found a site that has the foam for sale, and even tells (sorta) how to layer it for MOTORCYCLES! Wondering how hard it would be to get the cover off and then reattached- is it stapled on?

Here is a link to the site-



http://www.sunmatecushions.com/Appli...otorcycle.html

Biknut

2000 K1200LT

Previous Rides (in reverse order, since 1974):

'95 Kawasaki Concours
'84 Honda V65 Magna
'80 Honda CM 400E
'73 Honda XL 250
'69 Honda CL 175


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post #2 of 19 Old Sep 23rd, 2012, 7:55 am
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Re: New padding in an old seat

I'm sure there are some folks who could do that well, and actually get the original cover back on and not look like 'reverse liposuction,' but you are a short ride from Astech seat in Indiana, and they will put foam or gel, AND you won't be able to tell that surgery has been done, AND the ride will be perfect.

I had my seat adjusted by Astech a few months ago, and it is perfect.

Just a thought-plus they are not expensive

Dave
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post #3 of 19 Old Sep 23rd, 2012, 8:27 am
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Re: New padding in an old seat

There was some discussion about this at the RTE in Frankenmuth, MI yesterday. Saddleman mentioned he had it done at a place in North Carolina. Maybe he will add comment here or contact Saddleman on this board.

Scott and Theresa
Munising, MI
2004 K1200LT Black
2014 Kawasaki KLR650

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post #4 of 19 Old Sep 23rd, 2012, 2:37 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

Nuttin' to it!

INSTRUCTIONS FOR USING SUNMATE
TO CUSTOMIZE A MOTORCYCLE SEAT
A can of 3M74 spray adhesive, foam, and an electric knife for shaping are
all you need.
We have found through our own experience retrofitting seats and from
what riders tell us that at least a ½” of a firmer SunMate material works
well as a base.
Layer the base foam with Medium to Medium-Soft SunMate for comfort
and weight distribution. Your weight and what you are trying to achieve
determine the thickness and support pressure (e.g., Soft, Medium-Soft, Medium,
Firm). Two or more inches of Medium-Soft foam on top of the firmer
foam is the norm. If using only one inch of material, Medium would be the
norm.
Many riders use ½” to 1” of Pudgee (green foam) as a layer on top of the
SunMate for the ultimate in comfort. It will also help eliminate vibration.
Because of its gel-like properties, it will move as your body moves.
Use spray adhesive to laminate the foam. Cut and trim it with an electric
knife. Depending on the changes, you can either use the existing cover or
have another one made.
Some riders have removed only the actual sitting area from their existing
seats. This makes the retrofit easier for those who have seats with complex
contours, who don’t want to shape the entire seat.
Dynamic Systems sells a soft, elastic waterproof film barrier to put between
the foam and the seat cover. This film is 1½ mil thick and 60” wide
and costs $5.50/yd.


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post #5 of 19 Old Sep 23rd, 2012, 2:49 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

The place Saddleman had his seat worked on was Mean City Cycles. http://www.meancitycycles.com/

Marty Blok
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post #6 of 19 Old Sep 23rd, 2012, 2:49 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by RonKMiller
Nuttin' to it!

INSTRUCTIONS FOR USING SUNMATE
TO CUSTOMIZE A MOTORCYCLE SEAT
A can of 3M74 spray adhesive, foam, and an electric knife for shaping are
all you need.
We have found through our own experience retrofitting seats and from
what riders tell us that at least a ½” of a firmer SunMate material works
well as a base.
Layer the base foam with Medium to Medium-Soft SunMate for comfort
and weight distribution. Your weight and what you are trying to achieve
determine the thickness and support pressure (e.g., Soft, Medium-Soft, Medium,
Firm). Two or more inches of Medium-Soft foam on top of the firmer
foam is the norm. If using only one inch of material, Medium would be the
norm.
Many riders use ½” to 1” of Pudgee (green foam) as a layer on top of the
SunMate for the ultimate in comfort. It will also help eliminate vibration.
Because of its gel-like properties, it will move as your body moves.
Use spray adhesive to laminate the foam. Cut and trim it with an electric
knife. Depending on the changes, you can either use the existing cover or
have another one made.
Some riders have removed only the actual sitting area from their existing
seats. This makes the retrofit easier for those who have seats with complex
contours, who don’t want to shape the entire seat.
Dynamic Systems sells a soft, elastic waterproof film barrier to put between
the foam and the seat cover. This film is 1½ mil thick and 60” wide
and costs $5.50/yd.
Now how would you know! :-)

Dano
Tampa, Fl.

12 K1600 GTL
02 K1200 LT (gone but not forgotten)
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post #7 of 19 Old Sep 23rd, 2012, 7:45 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by DanDiver
Now how would you know! :-)
Just like I know how to pack a rag: Just stuff the sonamabeach in there and let 'er rip! A MUCH softer opening.

Is there an "old school" movement for skydiving?" Seems like a lot more fun to me... knowing that you might ACTUALLY die!


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post #8 of 19 Old Sep 23rd, 2012, 11:21 pm Thread Starter
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Re: New padding in an old seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by RonKMiller
Nuttin' to it!

Hey RonKMiller (and other saddle makers!)-

I'm sure that's easy for you to say, after doing what- hundreds of them? haha!

I don't ever expect a seat I put padding in to be anything like one of yours, as much as I would like that! But the misses and I have priorities in the finance department, and right now a new Kontour Seat just isn't there.

I have researched about every saddle maker I can find online, and I like yours (because of the cover material, and it doesn't need a rain cover) and the Russell (because Iron Butters have been winning on them for years now so there must be something to them.) One day, I hope to have one of these two fine saddles on whatever steed we are riding at the time.

Until that time, I am looking for a less expensive alternative that will work for now. Add to that fact that I like to learn to do new things such as this. I don't plan to quit my night job and put you or Russell out of business, I just like to be self-sufficient.

Hence my query into repadding our stock seat. Spend as little as possible, learn something new, get by awhile longer until the saddle is able to move up the priority list.

So maybe I'll try it, maybe I won't. Most likely it will depend on the cost of the materials-maybe the difference would be minimal.

So never fear about me opening up shop, or having a web page competing against anybody else. We are making our plans for less work and much more riding- hopefully, some day, on one of your fine saddles!

Biknut

2000 K1200LT

Previous Rides (in reverse order, since 1974):

'95 Kawasaki Concours
'84 Honda V65 Magna
'80 Honda CM 400E
'73 Honda XL 250
'69 Honda CL 175


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post #9 of 19 Old Sep 24th, 2012, 5:54 am
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Re: New padding in an old seat

I had mine re-foamed last year. Took out the absolutely crap soft-touch layer and built it up with higher density foam. I shaved a bit off the backrest as well so I could slide further back at get a better angle to the pegs. Very comfortable since. Total cost €50.
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post #10 of 19 Old Sep 24th, 2012, 7:55 am
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Re: New padding in an old seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by RonKMiller
Just like I know how to pack a rag: Just stuff the sonamabeach in there and let 'er rip! A MUCH softer opening.

Is there an "old school" movement for skydiving?" Seems like a lot more fun to me... knowing that you might ACTUALLY die!
I've watched a few "just stuff it in" and their openings are not very pretty...

You mean " old school" like a low pull contest! The new way to die is called swooping or seeing how fast you can go off heading, recover and still land safely. Had two die last week doing that!

By the way, I'll be out your way in 3 weeks. ~130 of us from around the world are meeting out at Eloy near Phoenix for a weekend of "knees in the breeze."

Dano
Tampa, Fl.

12 K1600 GTL
02 K1200 LT (gone but not forgotten)
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post #11 of 19 Old Sep 24th, 2012, 3:16 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by biknut
Anybody ever tried putting new foam in their seats? I just found a site that has the foam for sale, and even tells (sorta) how to layer it for MOTORCYCLES! Wondering how hard it would be to get the cover off and then reattached- is it stapled on?

Here is a link to the site-
http://www.sunmatecushions.com/Appli...otorcycle.html
Don't let Ron scare you. I'm an occupational therapist (not a SunMate spokesman) and I've worked with SunMate foams for close to 20 years doing wheelchair seating, including their liquid FIPS. Their instructions are sound, despite what Ron would like you to believe. Oh, and it's used by NASA too, just like Ron's 3M foam. 3M spray adhesive and an electric carving knife (the kitchen type) are all I need to make a seat or back. As long as you aren't afraid to experiment, you've got nothing to lose. Getting the shape that works for you will be the only hard part. Nice thing about DIY is you can keep it uncovered for awhile and test it out until you're happy with it (nothing too spirited though, wouldn't want it to come unglued in a corner). From the factory, the seat cover is attached with rivets, but decent staple gun will work too. Upholstery work is something you only get good at with lots of practice, so don't expect your old vinyl cover to look perfect once you get it back on, especially if you change the shape of your seat drastically. Heating up the vinyl might make the job easier. Try a heat gun or just a few minutes in your oven on LOW. Just don't touch the vinyl with any hot element.
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post #12 of 19 Old Sep 24th, 2012, 4:34 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by amindtat
Don't let Ron scare you. I'm an occupational therapist (not a SunMate spokesman) and I've worked with SunMate foams for close to 20 years doing wheelchair seating, including their liquid FIPS. Their instructions are sound, despite what Ron would like you to believe. Oh, and it's used by NASA too, just like Ron's 3M foam. 3M spray adhesive and an electric carving knife (the kitchen type) are all I need to make a seat or back. As long as you aren't afraid to experiment, you've got nothing to lose. Getting the shape that works for you will be the only hard part. Nice thing about DIY is you can keep it uncovered for awhile and test it out until you're happy with it (nothing too spirited though, wouldn't want it to come unglued in a corner). From the factory, the seat cover is attached with rivets, but decent staple gun will work too. Upholstery work is something you only get good at with lots of practice, so don't expect your old vinyl cover to look perfect once you get it back on, especially if you change the shape of your seat drastically. Heating up the vinyl might make the job easier. Try a heat gun or just a few minutes in your oven on LOW. Just don't touch the vinyl with any hot element.
I'm a rabid do-it-yourselfer, and I've got dozens of posts here on "ghetto mods" involving all sorts of fun, easy to stuff to an LT that are also incredibly inexpensive. About the only maintenance I've NEVER done on an LT is to change a tire, since for $15.00 I can let someone else wrestle with those danged beads.

As a professional you know what density and thickness is needed to achieve the desired results. You also need some "spring" as well, so including polyurethane in the mix for a motorcycle seat is critical. Once you get above 225 lbs. it' just about impossible to make a good motorcycle seat unless you go wider. The other big issue with visco (for the DIY'er) is waterproofing it - it is like a sponge and once wetted will NEVER dry out under a vinyl cover. Saran wrap works well, but will fall apart in short time - and that's exactly what OEM manufacturer's use.

I'm not saying that a good DIY'er can't improve a seat, it's just that it will be a hit and miss proposition that may take multiple attempts before getting it right. There's a lot more "art" involved than just slapping some foam in there - which the overly simplistic "directions" seem to indicate.

BTW, the riveted 99-04 plastic seat pans can't be stapled - they are as hard as steel and staples just bounce off. We've tried all sorts of staples - even the VERY stiff and sharp German Monel that we use now as well as using very high pressure. I wish we could figure out a way to use staples - it would cut about an hour off the re-assembly process since we have to use screws instead. 1995 and later are easily stapled. WE like seeing them!

(LT seats are especially time consuming and more labor intensive to rebuild, especially if they are heated and the "soft touch" variety.)


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post #13 of 19 Old Sep 25th, 2012, 4:38 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

I used the SUNMate products on my 1994 R1100RSL and had great "comfort" results. The look of it was okay, but definitely different than stock and the vinyl cover was loose. At the end of the day or ride, I was happy with my frankenstein like creation.
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post #14 of 19 Old Sep 25th, 2012, 5:34 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by RonKMiller
BTW, the riveted 99-04 plastic seat pans can't be stapled - they are as hard as steel and staples just bounce off. We've tried all sorts of staples - even the VERY stiff and sharp German Monel that we use now as well as using very high pressure. I wish we could figure out a way to use staples - it would cut about an hour off the re-assembly process since we have to use screws instead. 1995 and later are easily stapled. WE like seeing them! .)
Ron, My 2004 seat was re-foamed & they used black rivets. I don't know if he used the Plastic Exploding rivets or not. That's what I use on plastic. They are made out of aluminum for plastic.

Dave Selvig
2004 Black LT
2000 Canon Red LT



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post #15 of 19 Old Sep 25th, 2012, 5:42 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by MartyBlok
The place Saddleman had his seat worked on was Mean City Cycles. http://www.meancitycycles.com/
My Mean City Cycles seat works ok for me. It did take three times to get it right. He ended up using his softest foam on mine. I still think it could be better & it was ok for the price.

Dave Selvig
2004 Black LT
2000 Canon Red LT



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post #16 of 19 Old Sep 25th, 2012, 9:59 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by saddleman
Ron, My 2004 seat was re-foamed & they used black rivets. I don't know if he used the Plastic Exploding rivets or not. That's what I use on plastic. They are made out of aluminum for plastic.
Yeah, very easy to reuse the old holes with rivets, we've just found it faster to use a screw gun and pull our fabric really tight - it takes a lot more attachment points than vinyl - about double!


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post #17 of 19 Old Sep 26th, 2012, 9:01 am
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Re: New padding in an old seat

You could try Spencer's Motorcycle Seat Mods. For $75, Frank Turnier (not Spencer) redid my Multistrada seat and it was a definite upgrade. Good service and workmanship.

His web site is: greatdaytoride.com

RB

2005 Ducati Multistrada 1000DS (red)
2009 BMW R1200 RT (biue)

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post #18 of 19 Old Oct 4th, 2012, 9:05 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

I just took a 3 hour ride to get there today on my LT 1200 ;to get my seat refoamed by Mad Cow Custom Leather.He did rivet mine back on and got it nice and tight.
Jay was a great guy to work with to ;and it was not expensive.
I took over a 4 hour round about ride getting back home ;;because the seat was so comfortable.;;;I KNOW MAD COW ;WHAT A NAME

www.madcowcustomleather.com
Ph.-877-623-2691
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post #19 of 19 Old Oct 4th, 2012, 9:28 pm
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Re: New padding in an old seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by GaryEm
I just took a 3 hour ride to get there today on my LT 1200 ;to get my seat refoamed by Mad Cow Custom Leather.He did rivet mine back on and got it nice and tight.
Jay was a great guy to work with to ;and it was not expensive.
I took over a 4 hour round about ride getting back home ;;because the seat was so comfortable.;;;I KNOW MAD COW ;WHAT A NAME

www.madcowcustomleather.com
Ph.-877-623-2691
Glad to hear that worked out well for you - always nice to keep local guys in business!
Got that Mad Cow covered - so to speak! A very mooooving experience.

http://www.bmwlt.com/forums/showthre...hlight=cowhide

Real elephant skin covering? Dang, I don't think I could go there.
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