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Thread: BMW Seat Technology

  1. #16
    Registered User wvpc's Avatar
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    Just a fact

    No exaggeration. The major difference between the normal seat and the low seat is the amount of padding on the seat pan. The rear of the low seat sits lower because it has much less foam. You are actually sitting on the flat rear edge of plastic seat pan, about an inch of foam that squashes down to 1/2 inch and the synthethic cover which maybe is another 1/4 inch. The whole thing is as thick as my index finger once my dressed 200# is on the seat. Sure, the front of the seat has all kinds of foam but my weight does not rest there. The low seat is a cruel joke of the worst kind. Easily the worst feature of the bike.

    Note I am only talking about the pilot section of the seat. The rear section is padded like a La-Z-Boy.
    12 R1200 RT
    83 R100 RT

  2. #17
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    The thread title is either a joke or an oxymoron depending on your view.

    My RT is the most expensive bike I've ever owned and its stock seat is no better than on my first $300 Yamaha in the early 1960s- which is to say ill designed for serious use.

    Now its got Sargents front and rear- much better but not an ideal fit for me- but still OK for long days.

    6 ft, 176 lbs at present....a rather ordinary height and perhaps a little lighter than many.

  3. #18
    It's a way of life! oldnslow's Avatar
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    Face the facts men, seats from the manufacturer are designed for looks, not comfort. The seat is one of the most visible things on a bike. Can you imagine what the masses would say if the 1000rr came out with a DayLong with optional heavy side springs on it as standard equipment?! Comfort from a seat comes from a wide dish shape with a large area of support. ( I could mow all day on my Farmall SuperC with a METAL seat, but man was it wide and supportive!) Most custom seats are U-G-L-Y! but comfy!
    Mike Davis
    "Old n Slow" It's a way of life!
    1985 K100RT

    1998 R1100RT

  4. #19
    Registered User arthurdent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldnslow View Post
    Face the facts men, seats from the manufacturer are designed for looks, not comfort. ...Can you imagine what the masses would say if the 1000rr came out with a DayLong with optional heavy side springs on it as standard equipment?! Comfort from a seat comes from a wide dish shape with a large area of support. ( I could mow all day on my Farmall SuperC with a METAL seat, but man was it wide and supportive!) Most custom seats are U-G-L-Y! but comfy!
    Good point, Mike. I think about how Prevost prepares motor coaches to customizers. Essentially they put a 5 gallon bucket behind the wheel so that the coach can be delivered to the fab shop and have the customer's choice of seats put on.

    which begs a question: why bother touting the seat at all? BMW ought to put a seat on that costs next to nothing for delivery with a notice to the customer that they should expect to have a seat of their choice put on. Save the customer some $$ with the understanding that we should expect to replace it instead of a song and dance pretense.

  5. #20
    Registered User rickyd's Avatar
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    The seat on my '06 RT has a rise at the front as do several other models. You've got to kind of shift yourself a little up against that rise. You may have to adjust the family jewels some. Then your weight on the seat is distributed over a larger area of your crotch. Once I discovered this it made a big difference in my ride comfort especially over long distances.
    Rick

    '06 BMW R1200RT
    '74 Moto-Guzzi 850-T

  6. #21
    Registered User easy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 83014 View Post
    I'm sitting here watching a show on CNBC about the BMW car. The story just talked about the design of the seat. A Phd runs the program and has all sorts of diagnostic tools to make the perfect seat. Considering the stock BMW motorcycle seat, I appreciate the irony. It makes me wonder how BMW designs the seat. Are European backsides that different from US types?
    That's an excellent point.

    Judging by the number of posts on this forum and others that talk about purchasing aftermarket seats something must be askew with BMW touring bike seats.

    I often wonder how a corporation that makes such great auto seats doesnÔÇÖt make a quality motorcycle seat. With the exception of off-road bikes, I've owned a number of different makes and models of motorcycles and I have to say that BMW motorcycle seats rank at or near the bottom of the list, and this from a company that encourages long distance rewards. Back in the 80s and early 90s I had three Harleys that were taken on long distance trips and I never had to replace a seat on any of them.

    Sure consumers want a bike that looks good, but looks mean nothing without function. A touring bike needs to be designed to tour.

    My thought is that BMW is spending much of its time working on other issues they consider more important, and that if you have the money to buy a BMW you have the money to buy an after market seat.

    E.

  7. #22
    Ed Kilner #176066
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    Quote Originally Posted by rickyD View Post
    The seat on my '06 RT has a rise at the front as do several other models. You've got to kind of shift yourself a little up against that rise. You may have to adjust the family jewels some. Then your weight on the seat is distributed over a larger area of your crotch. Once I discovered this it made a big difference in my ride comfort especially over long distances.
    This is my preferred position in the twisties. It is supportive up there, and makes you feel connected to the bike.

    For the slab, I'm a bit further back. I will see how this works out for long rides soon. Who knows, I may find I don't like the seat either.
    Ed
    2011 R1200RT Thunder Gray Metallic; 2000 Triumph 900(sold)
    http://triumphantsblog.blogspot.ca/

  8. #23
    Registered User 39520's Avatar
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    When I recently bought my K12S, I budgeted for a new seat with heat. However, after a nice four day ride, I found no complaints with the OEM seat and am going to keep it. The seat is great and seriously I can live without butt heat.
    Ub
    05 K12S . 86 R65

  9. #24
    Mind is not for rent
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    The R12GS/A seat is a reminder of how cruel Germans can be.

  10. #25
    Registered User stkmkt1's Avatar
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    At 5'6" and a 30" inseam, I ride my GSA with the extra-low seat from the low-suspension R model. I actually have three BMW seats for my bike. The standard, the low model, and the extra low. I've never really ridden it with anything but the extra low. Can't touch the ground with the other two.

    I've ridden over 800 miles/day on it and did not really have much of a problem. I do have a set of beads, but I have not put them on in ages. Having said that, I also have a 1977 Honda 750 automatic, still with the original seat. I have ridden that across the country.

    Many people ask me how I can tolerate these stock seats, especially the BMW extra low seat. Don't know, but I may try an aftermarket seat some day just for kicks. But I'm in no hurry a most of my trips are less than 500 miles. And that is a piece of cake for me with the seats I have.

    Maybe the reason is that I made it a rule back in the 80's, for me anyway, that every 100-150 miles I would stop, get off the bike and grab a drink so as not to become dehydrated. I have kidney issues and must keep lots of water flowing to keep stones from forming. So I really never have a long time in saddle at one time before taking a bit of a break.
    '09 BMW 1200 GSA, 2013 BMW 700GS, 2000 Goldwing SE, '09' V Star 950, '09 Honda Rebel,
    '77 Honda 750A. Holding at six til I get new garage built - need more room for more bikes!

  11. #26
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    The last two bikes I've had before '08RT were Honda ST1100 (sport tourer)and Honda VT1100T (cruiser). Both had uncomfortable seats for me.

    I shaved about 1 1/2 inches off the foam seat and replaced it wit about and inch of memory foam and the seats were excellent for 700 mile days.

    The stock low seat on the RT is pretty good for a 700 mile day but could be better . The only reason I haven't done the same rebuild is because It's a heated seat and I'm hesitant about tearing into it.

    If anyone has experience with rebuilding the RT seat I'd love to have the info. Or if anyone has pics of the RT seat showing the exposed electrics it would help determine just what I'd be getting into
    Anthony S.
    2012 R1200GS

  12. #27
    Registered User arthurdent's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stkmkt1 View Post
    At 5'6" and a 30" inseam, I ride my GSA with the extra-low seat from the low-suspension R model...

    Maybe the reason is that I made it a rule back in the 80's, for me anyway, that every 100-150 miles I would stop, get off the bike and grab a drink so as not to become dehydrated. I have kidney issues and must keep lots of water flowing to keep stones from forming. So I really never have a long time in saddle at one time before taking a bit of a break.
    It seems that a good deal of our problem hehe in th US is that we're a lot heavier nd BMW is building seats for more appropriately sized folks. I count myself in the "Riepe-esqe" range. Sigh

  13. #28
    Registered User f14rio's Avatar
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    i put 60 miles on my original r1200r seat

    the distance to get from the dealer to my house. got a corbin asap.
    Last edited by f14rio; 05-24-2012 at 01:22 AM.
    "Enemy fighters at 2 o'clock!...Roger, What should i do until then?"

    2010 r1200r, 2009 harley crossbones, 2008 triumph/sidecar, 1970 norton commando 750

  14. #29
    Kawa Afterthought weschmann's Avatar
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    Seats

    I've ridden Suzies, Honda, and Kawasaki bikes over the years and the seat is one of the most often complaints lodged in the forum's there also. So, it would appear that the seat is the one personal item that does not lend itself to one size fits all. Having said that, my new to me and first BMW (2001) k1200rs seat is by far the most comfortable stock seat to fit my German behind in the last 5 years of looking for the ultimate seat fit. I've used the Airhawk, Alaskan Bear cover, rabbit cover from Georgia and the Mustang seat brand, all with varying degrees of success, which is why I moved to the sport touring concept to try and get my weight off my tail bone..... Going on my first 1500 mile next week to West Virginia to visit the Hattfields and McCoy's historical sites so it will be my first test of 8 hour riding in a day.....

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldnslow View Post
    Face the facts men, seats from the manufacturer are designed for looks, not comfort. The seat is one of the most visible things on a bike.
    I also believe this is correct, which is too bad. Unfortunately they generally seem to be getting worse. But then a R1200R with a R90/6 seat just wouldn't look "dynamic" enough. I wouldn't care what the shape is if they would just make the seats flat and level. For standard, GS, and touring bikes I wish the seat designer was required to ride 3 consecutive 1,000 kilometer days on his design before final approval.
    14 R1200GSA, 93 R100R. No car is as fun to drive as any motorcycle is to ride.

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