Is there anything I can do to make my stock seat more comfortable?

Tom Brown <browns@starnetinc.com> said that he figured out that the "stock seat is tilted down too much in the front. This holds true for any of the three positions you put it in because the front steps are positioned relative to the rear steps. There are four allen screws that hold the front steps in place. Shimming under these screws changes the relationship of the front to the back. Use flat washers under the screws, but also make a shim for the space in between so the bracket is supported across its length. I used stacks of flat washers wrapped together with black electrical tape. This fits in nicely and the tape keeps the odd washer from vibrating out. I put 750 miles on this weekend and had a much less sore butt and snuggy problem than in rides past.

Two side effects noted:

1. The front seat now can rock about " on the front supports. When you’re riding, you can’t tell, but at stops it will move on you. This isn’t a serious problem, but it kind of ruins that "of a piece" quality feeling that one strives for. I’ve seen some Corbins that do this with the back seat. I’ll look for a cure, but even with this problem, it’s going to be much better than stock for long rides.

2. The bar backs would be put to much better use now because it’s easier to sit back in the seat. This would also effectively put the pegs a little further forward for the rider, which is a good thing in my mind. I couldn’t see getting bar backs before because I was still riding up against the tank. From there, bar backs would feel awkward to me. Sitting on the good part of the seat, the regular bars feel a little too far forward for me.

Even though this is a quick fix, Tom still wants get a custom seat: "but want to wait until winter to order it. This is a temporary measure to get me through the season, but it shows signs of working pretty well."

Since he made it all work, Tom decided document his solution for a less expensive and quick fix to the RT’s seat problem:

1. Remove seat.

2. Locate 4 screws holding the front adjustable seat bracket to the frame.

3. Remove one of these, go to hardware store and purchase longer bolts of the same size. Get plated or stainless steel.

4. Also buy 40 plated flat washers for " bolt size.

5. Return to base station. Take the 40 washers and make 8 stacks of 5 washers.

6. Wrap two stacks together with electrical tape. (5 high by 2 wide)

7. Repeat step 6

8. Remove the rest of the bolts holding the seat bracket to the frame.

9. Replace one bolt with a longer one with 5 washers under the bracket and around the bolt. Start the bolt, but don’t tighten.

10. Replace the rest of the bolts in a similar manner.

11. Slide the "two-packs under the brackets between the bolts. This will give you an even height under the brackets all the way down the length.

12. Tighten all four bolts.

13. Replace seat.

Tom says the he has "…not found the front of the seat to interfere with the tank in any way. I have found that the rear of the front seat will rock on the front mount of the front seat. This is not a problem while riding and it does not allow the seat to be removed without the key."

Luc Schryvers <lucsch@microsoft.com> Followed up on Tom’s instructions, but made some modifications that result in better support for the seat bracket.

"I first tried out some adjustments with nylon washers to get a good height increase. I uplifted the seat height adjuster by 10 mm (some 3/8"), taking longer M5 bolts [M5 x 30] plus an added nut, because I couldn’t find allen bolts in that size. You need to add the nut, just under the bolt head, in order to be able to fasten the bolt afterwards: there is no room for tools to fasten otherwise. FYI: the original allen bolt is M5 x 15. After a first try out of some 200 miles, I found that this 10 mm uplift was very good: no yanking on the tank anymore when you release the throttle, and indeed safer private parts, or at least less painful ones!

After that I went to a hobby store and bought a plastic bar of 25 mm wide, 5 mm thick and 1 meter long (last measure not important). In inches this gives approx. 1" wide, 3/16" thick. I cut some 81 mm [a bit more than 3"] of the plastic bar 4 times, and used those 2 by 2 for each side of the adjustable front bracket to get the 10 mm height uplift. Drilled 2 holes in those plastic bars to accommodate the M5 bolts, and voila: the adjustable front bracket is now supported over its entire length as Tom Brown suggests to do.

Only disadvantage for smaller riders: when uplifting 10 mm or 3/8", you only can use the uppermost position of the seat, the middle and lower setting will not work, because the stock seat doesn’t fit well under the tank anymore. I have a 32" inseam and this works for me! I reckon when you use less than 10 mm or 3/8" uplift, you will be able to insert the stock seat correctly. Hence I suggest you first try this exercise by using regular washers to find an uplift that is suitable for you.

Total cost: a few USD and an hour of work. Result: less sore butt, because you don’t slide anymore on the seat and no numb nuts anymore! Thanks again Tom for the really good tip: it works for me! Hope this helps others out too."

John Moran <digisrvs@pdq.net> Reports that he " tried the seat shimming trick with a minor variation on the shim construction for better stability and it does make an appreciable difference on the forward roll of the seat. The seat still suffers from a lack of padding, tho’. My /5 stock seat is much more comfortable than the stock R1100RT seat, and it is plainly evident by the depth of the foam on each seat."

 

Fernando Belair <fbelair@aol.com> writes: "I read with interest about shimming the seat to change the angle and increase  comfort. Doing it with washers is fine, but I found a 1/8-inch and a 3/16-inch flat aluminum bar at Home Depot (about $3 each). With these I made simple shims that fit under the front seat adjuster and looks much better than washers. Plus, it supports the entire adjuster mechanism. Additionally, remove the rubber bumpers that the rear part of the front seat  sits on. Look at them from above (down into the hole) and you'll notice that  the rubber tapers down into the hole. With a single-edge razor blade, cut the tapered part of the rubber off (effectively shortening the bumpers by about 1/4-inch), then replace them on your seat. This complements the front shim by lowering the rear of the seat, but not so far as to mis-align the tongue/groove interlock between the front and rear seat."