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Some things get better with time. Motorcycle seats get worse. Back in my day (ranting old man) the last thing anyone would want to change was the seat. Because they were comfortable. Years ago manufacturers discovered that if you remove all thigh support you can sell to shorter riders. So ditch the cushy, rectangular seat & put on a thin, narrow bicycle seat. Looks racy now! Plus you can be 6" shorter & touch the ground. All your body weight is now on your tailbone, not your legs & butt. There's a reason we can sit on a chair 40 hours a week but not a bicycle. Weight distribution. Aftermarket seats put back the thigh support that wasn't there. Now that 600+ mile ride is possible. I really wish manufacturers would learn that most of us are over 4'11" & ride more than 20 minutes at a time. And those optional factory seats that ARE comfortable for an extra $200-300+, how about just making them standard & have the skinny ****ty seats optional? Just my Monday morning 2 cents.
 

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I have mixed feelings about stock seats on motorcycles. Years ago I had a Kawa Concours and thought the seat too uncomfortable. I spent a good amount of cash for a Corbin seat that actually was worse that the stock seat, which I went back to using. I've had a few Triumphs in recent years, an America and then a Thunderbird, and both seats were fine once I added a beadrider cover. My current bike, a 2016 Honda Goldwing, seems to have a decent stock seat. So far, after two years and about 16,000 miles I am still pretty happy with it and have not been tempted to spend $1,000 or more on an aftermarket seat.

I think what the manufacturers should be doing is offering a selection of stock seats, so that each rider could pick the one that roughly meets their needs in terms of seat height, firmness or softness, and appearance. They could satisfy the new bike buyer and steal the businesses from the after market seat makers in one convenient move.
 
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2015 BMW K1600GTL & 2008 Harley Davidson Dyna Super Glide Custom
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From the manufacturers standpoint we're look for a solution without a problem as no one is walking away from their bikes only because of the seat. Instead we, the buying public, take it as a given that the seat is going to suck. Since there isn't a one size fits all solution I doubt the manufacturers are going to do anything.


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The early seats on the British bikes used foam rubber for the padding. Rubber worked better as a cushion.
On your sofa, the part you sit on is the cushion, the part you lean on is the squab. Back to the cushion. Sometime during the sixties, expanded foam became available. This became the cushion padding. Fast forward and we have many densities available. For instance on my boat I replaced the soft 4 inch cushions, with more dense 2 inch. I think most modern bikes have some form of foam for cushioning, while rubber is likely used for the seats where a thinner cushion is required.
Also, some of the bikes seats got a bit fatter, side to side. Some have a sharp angle at the edge of the sitting part, where your legs go down, while others are nicely rounded.
All of which is what motivates a common theme here: Sit on the bike to feel how it fits.

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My new HD Heritage 114 came with a wonderfully comfortable stock seat, but it was too far back for me to reach the controls comfortably. Fast forward to "reach bars' and a "reach seat" and the ergonomics are perfect. However, the new seat is all skinny up front, putting the weight on the tailbone instead of my bottom and legs, just as the OP said about stock seats. :crying:

The height was never the problem - I am 5'7" with a 28 inch inseam, and was perfectly happy with both feet planted on the stock seat.

Is it possible to seek an upholsterer to add padding to the lumbar on the original seat in order to scoot my body forward like the reach seat, but leave the nice wide support around the thighs and stuff? Oh, man. This bike would be a Cadillac.
 

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My new HD Heritage 114 came with a wonderfully comfortable stock seat, but it was too far back for me to reach the controls comfortably. Fast forward to "reach bars' and a "reach seat" and the ergonomics are perfect. However, the new seat is all skinny up front, putting the weight on the tailbone instead of my bottom and legs, just as the OP said about stock seats.



The height was never the problem - I am 5'7" with a 28 inch inseam, and was perfectly happy with both feet planted on the stock seat.

Is it possible to seek an upholsterer to add padding to the lumbar on the original seat in order to scoot my forward, but leave the nice support around the thighs and stuff? Oh, man. This bike would be a Cadillac.
Look up Mean City Cycles; they specialize in HD seat modification. In your position bid send in my stick seat and sell the Reach Seat

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Look up Mean City Cycles; they specialize in HD seat modification. In your position bid send in my stick seat and sell the Reach Seat

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Looked them up, and sent them an e-mail. Thank you! :smile_big:
 

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Looked them up, and sent them an e-mail. Thank you! :smile_big:
You'll be happy, they did two seats for me.

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Really happy you responded with their information. Agree with your plan - send in the stock seat, then sell the Reach. I can totally ride the Reach Seat for as long as it takes to get the stock seat modified.

In the e-mail, I asked about padding the back support on the stock seat to move the rider forward 1.5 inches, just like the Reach, and also doing their "Iron Butt" modification.

This will be even better than the time I corrected the pre-load!
 
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