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Old 03-28-2009, 01:56 AM   #1
AKTobias OP
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$11 Seat Rebuild: KLR or about any bike

Instead of forking out the money for something more comfy than my stock KLR seat, I decided to rebuild what I had. I've got champagne taste, but a beer budget. Bottom line: I wanted a dished saddle and good foam, but didn't want to fund Corbin's kids' college.

Cost of Materials used $11.
-spray adhesive
-laminate underlayment (waterproof)
-8# carpet padding (it's more firm than stock KLR seat foam)

Step 1: Take cover off seat. Cut down old foam. The KLR was more of a motocross seat (tall and narrow) so I brought it down from 4.75 inches to 1.5 inches with a sawzall and a long blade.

Step 2: Spray glue on remaining seat foam. Set 2 layers of 8# carpet padding on seat. Let it dry. Then cut the carpet padding to the shape of the seat.

Step 3: Shape the seat with whatever you have. I used a grinder and it made a mess. It will take me longer to clean up that mess than it took me to do this whole project. I shaped a fairly deep saddle into the seat and then sat on it a little after each bit of cutting. I wanted it to fit my butt perfectly.

Step 4: Wrap it with a waterproof underlayment that goes under laminate flooring. I did 2 layers to cover up my not so perfect job of grinding the 8# carpet padding. It smoothed out the lumps, and adds a waterproofing.

Step 5: Now the difficult part of the job. To make the seat fabric stay down inside the saddle and not bubble up when you pull it tight to staple it ... you have to glue it in place. Lay the old seat cover on. Begin with the saddle area. Use your spray glue, and let it really dry before you pull and stretch and staple it underneath. As it was drying, I used a little weight to hold the inside curves of the saddle down. I used a 7 year old 72 lb little girl who can't get enough of sitting on the bike.

Step 6: Pull the edges tight around the bottom of the seat and staple the seat cover underneath.

I basically cut off 2 inches from the height of the seat ... and it helps me a bit to plant my whole foot on the ground at stops, or while pushing through the snow this week.

This worked well and looks like a custom seat ... except for the Kawasaki logo down the side of it.

I've got great pictures I'd like to load ... but can't. Is ADV not compatible with Mac?
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Old 03-28-2009, 04:23 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AKTobias

I've got great pictures I'd like to load ... but can't. Is ADV not compatible with Mac?
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Old 03-28-2009, 12:04 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AKTobias
...I've got great pictures I'd like to load ... but can't. Is ADV not compatible with Mac?
Sounds like something that would appeal to a wide audience here. Some sites allow you to upload pics directly to the site's database. Here at ADV, you'll want to upload them to some commercial photo hosting site and simply insert a hyperlink to the pics (as the above poster shows). Saves a ton of storage here. ADV Rider is affiliated with Smugmug, but any of the others work just fine.
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Old 03-28-2009, 03:03 PM   #4
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I was just thinking about this today , I would like a better seat , but don't have the $$$$$$$$ to drop on a commercial seat. It really would be nice to see the seat in progress , I have some ideas , but never having done anything like that , pics help!
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Old 03-28-2009, 05:20 PM   #5
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seat

Electric knife to cut the foam
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Old 03-29-2009, 03:59 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wannabee
I was just thinking about this today , I would like a better seat , but don't have the $$$$$$$$ to drop on a commercial seat. It really would be nice to see the seat in progress , I have some ideas , but never having done anything like that , pics help!
Another option, more money than cutting up your seat, but a lot less than a new aftermarket seat is Spencer's Motocare. Ship him your seat and he will trim the foam, add what you need, sculpt it and even add gel to it if you want. It'll cost $50, $75 if he adds the gel, plus shipping both ways. He does really nice work.

http://greatdaytoride.com/Home_Page.php
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Old 03-29-2009, 04:33 PM   #7
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Thanks for the link RatBob , I will be in contact with him , sounds like just what I am looking for.
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Old 03-29-2009, 04:44 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eyedragaknee
Electric knife to cut the foam
+1, does a very neat job
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Old 04-01-2009, 07:00 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by See-Double-You


What Sabre said. I have a MAC and works fine with Photobucket
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Old 04-01-2009, 12:34 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RatBob
Another option, more money than cutting up your seat, but a lot less than a new aftermarket seat is Spencer's Motocare. Ship him your seat and he will trim the foam, add what you need, sculpt it and even add gel to it if you want. It'll cost $50, $75 if he adds the gel, plus shipping both ways. He does really nice work.

http://greatdaytoride.com/Home_Page.php
I was not interested in DIY but didn't want to pay $$ for aftermarket. I asked my dealer to recommend someone who works on motorcycle seats. He suggested a local upholsterer.
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Old 04-03-2009, 11:24 AM   #11
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OKAY Here are the pictures of this project!

The stock seat is like a motorcross seat, high and narrow. I wanted shorter and wider, like my actual physique.


After removing the staples underneath with a flathead screwdriver, this is what you get.




My work area. I used a sawzall to cut the foam down. See how close I got to the line? Pure luck.



This is after I trimmed the original foam to my liking and tried it on the bike.



You can see a little of the saddle I cut into the carpet padding. This is 8 lb. padding.



This is the laminate underlayment. It adds waterproofing and a bit of cushion.



I did 2 layers of this.



While glueing the saddle part, I left the ends loose, not glued or stapled. This enabled me to glue the saddle and then stretch the rest.



This is my helper. A 72 pound girl who can't get enough of a motorcycle is a perfect seat holder while the glue dries. She actually sat still for about 10 minutes!



This one really shows the saddle well after the glue stuck and I stretched the rest, stapling it underneath.



Final Product.



Looking at her from the side.



Looking at her from the rear. From this angle you can see that it is wider.



Here's a close-up of the saddle.


AKTobias screwed with this post 04-03-2009 at 11:54 AM
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Old 04-03-2009, 06:18 PM   #12
Wannabee
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Great Mod!
Makes me want to attempted my own , but the scroll work on your saddle looks like it maybe complicated !
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Old 04-03-2009, 06:22 PM   #13
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Great job!


Thanks
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Old 04-03-2009, 06:28 PM   #14
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That's some fine work. Have you tried it on an extended ride yet?
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Old 04-07-2009, 03:01 PM   #15
AKTobias OP
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Ride yet?

I've not gone an extended ride yet because I've not gone out at all yet. We still have a bit of snow and ice on the roads. But I have done a lot of sitting on it in the garage ... making vrooming sounds.

I'm planning on pushing through the ice in my neighborhood today and going toward some dry roads. I may ride for an hour or 2, and will let you know.

I still plan on getting a sheep skin cover from Barb at Alaska Leather. Everyone swears by them ... so I'll take their word for it. But for around town rides and out in the bush, this ought to be perfect.
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