Modifying a seat... need some tips
Close

Modifying a seat... need some tips

This is a discussion on Modifying a seat... need some tips within the Technical forums, part of the Caferacer.net Forums category; I have two of these seats - the one on the bike and another that's pretty rough - the cover is shot. I'm going to ...

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 25
Like Tree5Likes

Thread: Modifying a seat... need some tips

  1. #1
    Junior Member OldZaskar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    17

    Modifying a seat... need some tips

    I have two of these seats - the one on the bike and another that's pretty rough - the cover is shot. I'm going to set the good one aside and modify the other. The plan is to pull the cover and reshape the foam and have a local upholstery guy recover it. I'd like to stick with the OE pan - the hinge, lock, etc. But, I'd like to shorten the seat by about 4.5". This is where it I've got questions...

    If I cut the pan, I lose the rounded, turned down edge at the back. My guess is that makes upholstering the seat tough. Can I just notch and bend the end to recreate that shape. Or, should I enlist the welding skills of a buddy and replace that end?

    The bike:
    Name:  1XjPUtA.png
Views: 53
Size:  4.33 MB

    The seat:
    Name:  yN1DEym.png
Views: 55
Size:  1.73 MB

  2. #2
    Senior Member 540nova's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Posts
    107
    Leave your foam overhanging the pan by 1/4 - 1/2", to leave a soft edge for the material. Even if you don't, the upholstery guys should have some edging material to put over the sharp edge.

    Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk

  3. #3
    Senior Member Geeto67's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Columbus, Ohio
    Posts
    23,200
    have you thought about making a fiberglass replica of the steel pan? Or better yet sourcing a different pan that you can modify?

    For instance I have found these old Corbin Gentry "chopper" or touring seats have shorter than stock pans, are metal or fiberglass, and have bolt on hinges and latches that fit the stock bike. Case in point:
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/1974-Honda-...sAAOxybLpRhe47

    for years I picked up these seats for $10-$30 so I wouldn't pay $60 plus shipping for a beat chopper seat literally nobody wants. just go to swap meets, or keep checking CL for them, or try SOHC4.net forums.

    and then there is always this option:
    https://texavina.com/cb550-cb550k-74-76/
    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.
    - Samuel Beckett
    A tool is just an opportunity with a handle
    - Kevin Kelly

  4. Remove Advertisements
    CafeRacer.net
    Advertisements
     

  5. #4
    Senior Member Geeto67's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Columbus, Ohio
    Posts
    23,200
    also, how close is this to what you want?

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/1972-1976-H...temCondition=4

    I think an upholstery shop is gonna charge you way more than $75 for a custom seat cover and foam job.
    Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.
    - Samuel Beckett
    A tool is just an opportunity with a handle
    - Kevin Kelly

  6. #5
    Junior Member OldZaskar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Posts
    17
    Great info - leaving the 1/2', having the upholstry guy trim the edge.

    I like that $75 seat... more than my current, not as much as the planned seat - I do want to lop off the 4.5" and I want dark brown (the burgundy on the tank/side covers is going away)

    Those ebay seats... Those are tempting. At $180-200, it's hard to beat. I'm sure, after my time, (buying that electric kitchen/carving knife), paying the upholstry guy... maybe it'd be cheaper to make/modify my own... maybe. Have you heard anything about those seats? Quality good? Okay?

    Thanks!

  7. #6
    Senior Member 540nova's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Posts
    107
    Quote Originally Posted by Geeto67 View Post
    also, how close is this to what you want?

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/1972-1976-H...temCondition=4

    I think an upholstery shop is gonna charge you way more than $75 for a custom seat cover and foam job.
    Hey Geeto, I tried to send you a message, but your forum inbox is full.
    Can you please email me, so I'll have your address, to ask you a question about BMWs?
    Or text, 609-668-8530
    Thank you
    Mark Kouri
    www.MerlinCycleworks.com

    Or

    Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk

  8. #7
    Senior Member TrialsRider's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    5,064
    :I been repairing these things since I was 12 years old, the concept of hiring an upholsterer to give me a foam job lol

    Find an old leather couch or chair that is bound for a landfill, strip the upholstery leather off that and stretch it over whatever shape you end up making, if you can get away without a stitched seam you are laughing. Should not be all that difficult if you retain enough of the original fasteners and use liberal amounts of contact cement.
    Note: leather is only waterproof if you put a waterproof backing on it, if you put it directly on foam the foam will soak water :| and you will need a rain cover
    or only ride indoors. You can buy adhesive back sheet rubberized waterproof membrane stuff that is used in construction to back the leather, stretch it over the saddle first so that it holds your leather into shape and not out of shape :|

    If anybody walks up to your bike and smells your saddle to see if it is real leather, make sure you point and yell pervert!
    540nova, woodsman and Geeto67 like this.

  9. #8
    Senior Member 540nova's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Posts
    107
    Making a seat is so easy. I use marine-grade foam. It's dense, for good support, holds it's shape, and won't hold water.
    Rarely does an eBay seat match the contours of your frame, and look cheap, in my opinion.
    If you go way back on my Instagram, you can see step by step of my method for making a seat. Merlincycleworks on Instagram.

    Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk

  10. #9
    Senior Member Cyorg's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Posts
    1,968
    There are lots of metal working videos on youtube that will show you how to put that lip back on there if you want. Speaking of marine... There are a couple of videos at the bottom of this page. I have bought material from them and are good to deal with. That material that stretches in both directions would make your life easier if you want to do it yourself.

    https://www.sailrite.com/How-To-Proj...-Auto-Projects
    "Non urinat in ventum"

  11. #10
    Senior Member woodsman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    1,401
    I can't picture the transition from seat to fender after the cut, but you might want to consider the aesthetics before you cut anything and do your seat fabrication with it in mind. The only thing I'd add to the points above is that I usually hollow a spot in the foam and add a gel pad insert. Find a old "car coat", nice, soft leather in large sections.

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Sponsored Links

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Similar Threads

  1. Need to make this seat fit!!! Need some ideas...
    By The Chief in forum Project Builds
    Replies: 31
    Last Post: 03-01-2014, 06:17 PM
  2. Replies: 10
    Last Post: 02-14-2013, 07:45 PM
  3. modifying the rake on a sportster
    By Marc A. in forum Technical
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 02-12-2013, 12:23 PM
  4. modifying xs650 triple with xs400 stem
    By pampadori in forum Technical
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 01-12-2011, 10:24 PM
  5. RD build. Rebuilding/ modifying clocks.
    By Fang in forum General
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 04-24-2009, 11:39 AM