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Old 03-20-2015, 02:58 PM   #1
Tgiby3 OP
Triumph Street RAT
 
Joined: Jul 2014
Location: Northern Virginia - Fairfax
Oddometer: 117
Custom Seat Wrapping

Hey guys!
I've got a 13' Bonnie and I have the King and queen seat on it currently.

So my old stock seat is just sitting in my garage, and wanted to see what kind of experience everyone has with customizing seats. I wanna get some new padding and leather to wrap.

Anyone have experience doing this?
What padding are best and where can one obtain them?
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Old 03-21-2015, 05:19 PM   #2
dakdakdave
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easy stuff.

I run a camo canvas seat cover on my sidecar.There are plenty of You Tube vids on seat reshaping,recovering etc. hav a go,you'll be suprised!
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Old 03-21-2015, 05:38 PM   #3
Yella DR
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www.diymotorcycleseat.com
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Old 03-30-2015, 06:42 AM   #4
Qaz
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Good luck using leather on a seat. I have done 6 seats over the years and although I would feel comfortable doing a seat in it, I still would not use leather. Its main drawback for me is that once it gets wet, it is wet.
I have modified seats by cutting the original foam and also using carpet padding, but foam used for airplane seats is the best to work with. Although I have one I did two years ago using pipe insulation that is very comfortable, as in 500+ miles comfortable. Be very careful modifying foam, it is more complicated than it looks and once done is not easy to fix. It might look right, but it probably will not ride right. I have never had good luck taking a seat to a car upholstery shop. They really don't understand motorcycle seats, there really is a science to it.

I use the black vinyl that you can get at fabric shops. Tell them that you would like it to stretch two ways, but will probably only have it that stretches one way. One yard should do two seats. The only thing else that you need is scissors, hair dryer, staple gun, a vapor barrier and an extra hand. Have fun
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Old 03-30-2015, 12:53 PM   #5
Z50R
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Joined: May 2009
Location: Boston Mass.
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I re-covered my first motorcycle's seat with leather. The foam was in good shape so I have nothing to offer there. The vinyl was trashed when I bought the bike. I used a "black motorcycle side" from Tandy Leather:

http://www.tandyleather.com/en-usd/h...e/9112-71.aspx

And a hand punch and waxed cotton thread. I used what was left of the original seat cover for a pattern, sewed one stitch at a time: line up the leather, punch it once then stitch it once. On longer straight sections I punched two or three holes at a shot. When the cover was done I used short stainless wood screws and washers to hold the cover to the plastic pan.

The most useful thing I learned: use a piece of hardwood for the anvil to punch the leather. I put a piece of oak about 1 inch wide, 7 inches long and 1.5 inches thick in a bench vise such that the wood extended out the side of the vise a few inches. The wood functions like the horn of an anvil allowing you to get a solid backing for tight spots. As the wood gets destroyed you can flip it over for a clean surface then cut an inch off the length and start again.

The bike lived outside and I rode it in every imaginable weather condition. I didn't have problems with a wet seat. The foam still had a plastic cover and the leather had no seams across the seating surface to allow water to get to the foam.
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Old 04-01-2015, 02:26 PM   #6
Euromad
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I've done a few seats.
http://www.foambymail.com/R/rebond-foam.html
Has rebond foam. 77 3M spray glue. Mold with a electric carving knife, bread knife, coarse rotary sander.
I built this from a Bridgestone steel base seat. I got an upholsterer to cover with heavy vinyl for $100. She re-used the top inset of the old seat. There is a bunch of youtube videos about seat building.
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Old 04-01-2015, 03:48 PM   #7
OldDog
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Location: Mudgee, Australia
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Yup heres one I built for an old scrapper, the skin is off a feral goat I shot, and cold tanned the hide. Free leather cover and a meal thrown in, pretty good deal.
I shaped the seat as others have suggested, using an electric carving knife, it worked a treat! Can't recommend leather as a cover though. As already stated it gets wet and stays wet, if I did it again I'd probably use heavy vinyl instead.

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Old 04-02-2015, 03:40 AM   #8
PeterW
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One comment, unless the shape is obscenely complicated, forget about seams, pick a hot day, sit the vinyl in the sun for a while, 'borrow' a hair dryer or better a temperature controlled heat gun. Staple the nose down with only 2-3 staples and slowly work your way back, just work the vinyl into shape with your hands and GENTLE heat if it need just a touch here and there, a FEW staples to hold the gains, and then go back and do a final run of staples at the end.

Leather is - well, much harder to work and vinyl will only cost you $20 or so.

A blast of hair spray on the seat may help.

Buy an air stapler and stainless steel staples, being cheap here will cost you a lot of aggravation later.

Pete
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