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J

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I rode my dl650 to Rick Mayer's on friday, had him do the seat on Saturday and rode it back, approx. 420 miles of Interstate 5 each way.
On arrival at Mayer's he had me sit on the bike, took a photos, did some measuring and ask for my input about the seat. He then strips the cover and cuts the stock foam where he will be adding hiw own foam.
Unlike some I've seen he uses at least three different types of foam making the seat including a 'pudgee' foam in the seating area which is a type used in hospitals and is almost like a gel pad in consistency.
Once the foam is on, he does some shaping with a knife not unlike an electric carving knife, then shapes it with a rotary grinder. Once shaped he makes the cover, puts the seat on the bike and lays the cover on so it can be ridden and then adjusted as needed.
In my case I felt it was a bit tight in the crotch, so he reshaped that a bit and made a couple of other minor adjustments and then I rode it again. I felt it was right so the put the cover on and we were done. Total time was approx. 2 hours.
I had to ride straight back home and to be in by dark meant minimal stops, I stopped once long enough to put gas in, once for lunch for about half an hour and one more time for gas and a coke. I found the seat excellent, never bothered me or left any sore spots at all so i have to say it is at least as good as any of the other three custom saddles I've had done and I actually like it a bit better than the Bill
Mayer saddle I had on my R1150GS which was very good indeed.
The strom did the mileage with no problem. I hate Interstates but I would say that if I must do them I would prefer to be on a bike that entertains me a bit more with its personality, in my case my HD or even my SV1000. This can't be considered a criticism per se, the Strom is quite smooth even though at a GPS measured 70 mph (76 mph according to the speedo) its turning about 5500 rpm. In being as capable of an all arounder kind of bike as it is, I think the Strom just naturally has to not have as blustery a personality as some bikes have. Others will disagree of course and thats what makes motorcycling.
I should also note that the MRA Vario screen ddoes a quite good job of eliminating the buffeting I was experiencing at 65 mph and above. It still allows for a fair amount of wind noise, especially if there are cross winds but I think it is tolerable with ear plugs and about what one might expect given the relatively small size of the MRA product.
Finally, I noticed a small drop in fuel mileage on this trip. I ran approx. 70-75 mph as much as possible (measured by gps) and found mileage ran from 43-46 mpg. Previously I had been seeing about 47-48. I suspect with the gearing having the engine spin as fast as it does at sustained higher speeds thats just how it is, a fair trade off in my book considering that the gearing is really pretty much spot on and 6th gear is quite useful, rather than an overdrive as you see on some other machines.
Overall, it continues to impress me as quite competent for the role of back road tour bike and one that could be pressed into service as a long distance tourer if need be. Very few machines that can approach this level of versatility, none for the price Suzuki sells them for.
 

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Thanks for the info on the seat. Do you have any photos. I want to compare how tall and wide it is compared to the stock seat and the Gel seat.
If you sent him the seat without the ride in haow different would it have been? I mean how much custom fitting did he have to do for you?

Thanks.
 

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SS....
I had Bill Mayer Saddles make me a seat for my DL650 and I had to fill out a form with my riding preferences and dimensions. Also, I had to take pictures of the bike without me on it, and another with me sitting on the stock seat. Finally, I had to sit on the seat where I felt comfortable and then have an aid take a piece of chalk and mark all the way across the seat where my butt was lined up. The BMS did raise the seat height a good bit so you'd have to tell him if this would be a problem.
 
J

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Discussion Starter #4
Speedstar. I haven't shot any photos of it yet, if I get a chance I'll try and get a couple for you.
As far as height, I asked for the seat to be a little taller than stock, the stocker was too low for me and put my knees in a cramp. Naturally, the fact that the seat is wider is going to make it feel a bit taller all by itself. I would estimate it feels about an inch taller than prior. I'm 5'11" and have about a 31" inseam and can still easily flat foot the bike.
Its hard to say what would happen if you sent it in. The only significant adjustments he made after the initial shaping was the relief cuts in the crotch area. In the worst case I imagine its a matter of shipping the seat back and asking for an adjustment, it would cost you a little shipping of course.
Its a problem you face with any custom seat maker, without you being there about all they have to go on is what you say and photos you provide. I think most, like Bill Mayer, Rich's and others can hit it pretty close simply because they've done it for so long.l
One thing that was nice is that since they were running a 'special' on dual sport seats at 20% off, this seat ended up costing me just a tick over $250 which I felt was quite a bargain. It also helped that I decided to go vinyl over leather this time. I like leather seats but just didn't want to pay the freight this time.
 
J

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Discussion Starter #6
Best I can tell theres no way for me to post pictures. If anyone wants to see a couple, pm me or shoot me an email at [email protected] with your email address and I'll send them.
 
B

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I can'r remember where it is but there is a pic of a Rcik Mayer saddle somewhere on the site that I posted last Sept when I had mine done.
 

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RubberDown said:
SS....
I had Bill Mayer Saddles make me a seat for my DL650 and I had to fill out a form with my riding preferences and dimensions. Also, I had to take pictures of the bike without me on it, and another with me sitting on the stock seat. Finally, I had to sit on the seat where I felt comfortable and then have an aid take a piece of chalk and mark all the way across the seat where my butt was lined up. The BMS did raise the seat height a good bit so you'd have to tell him if this would be a problem.
Rubberdown - I have spoken to the lady at Bill Mayers about doing my seat. I just don't know about going up there or just sending it in with all the info. I assume you are very happy with yours? This will be something for me to add soon. I like my Gel seat but if it can be better custom, why not...
 

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Joe S. said:
Speedstar. I haven't shot any photos of it yet, if I get a chance I'll try and get a couple for you.
As far as height, I asked for the seat to be a little taller than stock, the stocker was too low for me and put my knees in a cramp. Naturally, the fact that the seat is wider is going to make it feel a bit taller all by itself. I would estimate it feels about an inch taller than prior. I'm 5'11" and have about a 31" inseam and can still easily flat foot the bike.
Its hard to say what would happen if you sent it in. The only significant adjustments he made after the initial shaping was the relief cuts in the crotch area. In the worst case I imagine its a matter of shipping the seat back and asking for an adjustment, it would cost you a little shipping of course.
Its a problem you face with any custom seat maker, without you being there about all they have to go on is what you say and photos you provide. I think most, like Bill Mayer, Rich's and others can hit it pretty close simply because they've done it for so long.l
One thing that was nice is that since they were running a 'special' on dual sport seats at 20% off, this seat ended up costing me just a tick over $250 which I felt was quite a bargain. It also helped that I decided to go vinyl over leather this time. I like leather seats but just didn't want to pay the freight this time.
Thanks for the info Joe - $250 is a great price. $100 better than his brother's. I may have to reconsider which Mayer I go with. :wink:
 

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Speedstar,
Call Bill Mayer and ask him to explain the difference between the 2 seats. When I was at his shop he took me back and showed me the different seats (Rick Mayer, Sargent, BMW etc) and explained the difference in construction. He uses a patented multi density foam injection process. I think you will be impressed. I was and he made mine. I can ride 300-400 miles and be very comfortable. NO butt burn!! It is GREAT!!! It's more money but well worth it!!! I did the leather solo option. I think a ride in is preferable to sending it in. Bill was very good at talking to me about the design and modifications to my seat and listened to my concerns. I told hime that I wanted to be able to ride tank to tank if I wanted to. That's what I got. :D
 
J

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Discussion Starter #11
Bill Mayer makes a great seat also, I had one on my GS and was very satisfied with it. I can also say that Rich's in Seattle does a good seat, he did one for my SV1000. For that matter if Sargent had come out with their World Class series for the Strom I would strongly consider that also, I had good results with them on Ducatis.
What I have come to believe is that there are a lot of ways to go about building a satisfactory seat. One may be better than another but I am inclined to think this is not necessarily true.
Bottom line to the whole deal is that you have to do some research and decide who's philosophy you feel most comfortable with. All of the good ones will guarantee their work and to me that is a hallmark of confidence in your product. If you notice, when you surf net forums you rarely hear a compalint about any of the top seat makers, those are the guys you want to deal with. On the other hand there is a certain large seat company whose name has not been mentioned about which you hear lots of complaints....where theres smoke...
 

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Joe S. said:
On the other hand there is a certain large seat company whose name has not been mentioned about which you hear lots of complaints....where theres smoke...
Uh....Corbin? :wink:

I have had my share of problems dealing with Corbin. Good seat if you can get it done right. Customer service is not their strongpoint.

I called Rick and he said it was 8-10 weeks leadtime. I don't want to wait that long when the time comes. He was not offering any discounts at the time either. I will check with him again later.
 
J

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Compared To What? said:
Compared To What? said:
OK...............I give up, where are the PICTURES??
:?:
If you will read my previous reply to this question I mentioned I don't see a way to easily post pics to this site. I offered to direct email them to anyone who asked.
 
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