Making my own seat - Kawasaki Vulcan 750 Forum : Kawasaki VN750 Forums
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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-03-2010, 04:26 AM Thread Starter
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Making my own seat

Hey guys, I'm in the thinking stages of making my own custom seat. I think I have the general layout that I want in mind. Now I just need to figure out how to make it. Can y'all direct me to some sort of how-to or tips thread or website for how to construct the pan? That to me seems like the most complicated part of the whole thing. I was thinking about using wood, but I'm not sure how I'd make all the pieces at different angles fit together, so I figure there must be an easier/better way to do it.

BTW, the plan is to remove the sissy bar and "trunk" to make the back seat longer. Frankly, there's just not enough room back there. I also plan to create a new sissy bar and backrest system so that my wife will feel safe and not like she's going to fall off the back of the bike. Just gotta figure out how to do all that.

'95 Vulcan 750 - Purchased 8/2003 w/ 21,124 miles - passed 50K 9/3/15
* VN900 seat * Daytona handlebar * Converted ACCTs to MCCTs * Relocated R/R * Drilled clutch basket * Coastered * Repainted *
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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-03-2010, 11:58 AM
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slimvulcanrider has some links in his signature for DIY seat mods and how he did his.

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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-03-2010, 06:28 PM
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I used the original seats on both my 750s and just cut the backrest part off, re-stapled the cover back on, and made a small backrest pad for the sissy bar. I'm also in the process of having some extensions made out of polished aluminum for the sissy bar to make it taller. If you need a more detailed description PM me.

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Last edited by baldy; 12-28-2010 at 03:51 PM.
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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-03-2010, 06:55 PM
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There was a guy that did that, extend the rear, awhile back, but not sure if the photos are around anymore.

Basicly he used the stock seat pan, cut the rear "flip" off, and using just sheet metal , metal straps and bolts, he added a a good 6 inchs on to the rear section of the seat.( I would not use wood) For some reason he also made the passenger seat itself taller, which looked a bit odd but would be great if you have a short wife...lol.

There is some support back there for an extension, but not alot. If you look at the photo of my solo seat:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/knifema...7602277627359/

You can see the frame kinda ends just behind it. If you were to wish to add not only an extended seat, but a backrest , I would suggest extending the frame itself somehow, so the seat is on a stable platform.

This would be pretty easy to do, as the rear frame rails end as open tubes in the rear, pointing back, it be fairly simple to insert some smaller diameter tube or bar stock to make the frame as long in the back as you'd likely need. (Having someone weld it for you in place be good too)

I remember someone using one of those white plastic polypropolene cutting boards as a seat pan for a seperate passenger seat on a bike, if you do not have the tools to work with sheet metal that be a pretty good alternative as it is easy to cut , but still pretty stiff and very strong.

The seat pan only really needs to be so strong if you have it backed up by some solid framing. (Keep in mind the stock seat pan is thin plastic, not metal)

You do want to think ahead and not make the whole thing too hard to remove so you can still get to the battery without needing a tool box...

KM

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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-03-2010, 07:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveT319 View Post
Hey guys, I'm in the thinking stages of making my own custom seat. I think I have the general layout that I want in mind. Now I just need to figure out how to make it. Can y'all direct me to some sort of how-to or tips thread or website for how to construct the pan? That to me seems like the most complicated part of the whole thing. I was thinking about using wood, but I'm not sure how I'd make all the pieces at different angles fit together, so I figure there must be an easier/better way to do it.

BTW, the plan is to remove the sissy bar and "trunk" to make the back seat longer. Frankly, there's just not enough room back there. I also plan to create a new sissy bar and backrest system so that my wife will feel safe and not like she's going to fall off the back of the bike. Just gotta figure out how to do all that.
this is exactly what I wanted and did... although I found that by making my own fiberglass seat pan, I was able to lower the driver seat about 3" scoot it back about 4" and extend the passenger pillion almost a whole foot, and still allowed the stock backrest to be used... although in making my custom seat pan, I opted to make it mount to the extended backrest for even more comfort for the passenger... my step daughter loves it (the only passenger that rides with me on my Vulcan).

If you want more information, search my sig line, http://www.diymotorcycleseat.com has lots of good information on chooseing the right materials for your job, and http://www.jeffreyphipps.com/seat_pans.htm has a good tutorial for making a fiberglass seat pan. I have a lot of information on this subject, feel free to PM me if you need any advice.

Also if you are looking to make a saddle like seat with an old school passenger pillion, I have that information for you as well, just not written up in any kind of formal how to... but its pretty straight forward and would be willing to talk more about it in a PM

Quote:
There was a guy that did that, extend the rear, awhile back, but not sure if the photos are around anymore.

Basicly he used the stock seat pan, cut the rear "flip" off, and using just sheet metal , metal straps and bolts, he added a a good 6 inchs on to the rear section of the seat.( I would not use wood) For some reason he also made the passenger seat itself taller, which looked a bit odd but would be great if you have a short wife...lol.


There is some support back there for an extension, but not alot. If you look at the photo of my solo seat:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/knifema...7602277627359/

You can see the frame kinda ends just behind it. If you were to wish to add not only an extended seat, but a backrest , I would suggest extending the frame itself somehow, so the seat is on a stable platform.

This would be pretty easy to do, as the rear frame rails end as open tubes in the rear, pointing back, it be fairly simple to insert some smaller diameter tube or bar stock to make the frame as long in the back as you'd likely need. (Having someone weld it for you in place be good too)

I remember someone using one of those white plastic polypropolene cutting boards as a seat pan for a seperate passenger seat on a bike, if you do not have the tools to work with sheet metal that be a pretty good alternative as it is easy to cut , but still pretty stiff and very strong.

The seat pan only really needs to be so strong if you have it backed up by some solid framing. (Keep in mind the stock seat pan is thin plastic, not metal)

You do want to think ahead and not make the whole thing too hard to remove so you can still get to the battery without needing a tool box...

KM
another alternative to the metal strips mentioned here would be to use fiberglass to build the patch. I like working with fiberglass more than metal when building and modding seat pans because the "glass" will mold to the bike, and then you can shape it any way you need to to make the seat more comfortable. I have found that while building a seat that if the pan isn't comfortable to ride at least 50 miles on with out padding, that a comfortable longer ride isn't possible even after properly padded.

Last edited by slimvulcanrider; 12-03-2010 at 07:35 PM.
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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-04-2010, 01:41 PM
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i have started on making my own custom seat and im going to redo the whole pan (with fiberglass) and make a sissy bar but im wanting to make it look good the only thing that has me stumped is how to make a nice sissy bar im running into problems like where or how to bolt it. should i make it round at the top or run it to a point what kind or metal should i use. i have been trying to imagine ahead before i make my seat pan and see what it looks like but idk. i want to extend my seat pan passenger seat pan some where around 5 inches and add a sissy bar.

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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-04-2010, 09:14 PM
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Hillbilly, since you are strutted, make a round sissybar that attatches to the the rear axle and runs up to the rear most fender bolts. the shape and hight is up to you... I would make it round.

I aslo would make the sissy bar first, then the seat pan. when pouring your glass for the passenger seat, use a piece of flatbar to make a reinforced mounting points on the passenger backrest and the location where the seat fits under the tank.

Last edited by slimvulcanrider; 12-04-2010 at 09:29 PM.
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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-04-2010, 09:16 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys, some great info so far.

'95 Vulcan 750 - Purchased 8/2003 w/ 21,124 miles - passed 50K 9/3/15
* VN900 seat * Daytona handlebar * Converted ACCTs to MCCTs * Relocated R/R * Drilled clutch basket * Coastered * Repainted *
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-05-2010, 07:05 PM
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alright im goina give it a try im waiting till after the holidays to start start fabing thought.

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K and N Pods
12 inch Aps
Handle Grips
Dual Break Lines
House Of Colors Candy Apple Red
Lowered
Road Pegs
Jetted
Coasters
Custom Exhaust
Red Plug Wires
Neons
Custom Switch Panels
Harley Turn Signals(Coming UPS)
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Removed Tach
Removed Speedometer
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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 12-14-2010, 12:21 AM Thread Starter
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So after some looking around here at what others have done, I have decided to get a VN900 seat and make the slight modifications to the seat and my bike in order to make it work. I think it was probably the easiest option, and in looking at the seat it should suit my needs just fine.

Now the issue is how to attach a backrest for my wife. I know she'll feel more comfortable having something behind her.

So, how should I do this? For those of you who have gone to a different, custom, or homemade seat without the stock sissybar and backrest, what did you use for a backrest, and how did you attach it?

'95 Vulcan 750 - Purchased 8/2003 w/ 21,124 miles - passed 50K 9/3/15
* VN900 seat * Daytona handlebar * Converted ACCTs to MCCTs * Relocated R/R * Drilled clutch basket * Coastered * Repainted *
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