FIT FOAM AND SEAT COVER
Not as easy as it sounds!
Re-covering a motorcycle’s seat is one of those jobs that, for most of us, can be a royal pain. Ostensibly it should be an assignment that’s easy to accomplish but when you get deeper into it you realise just why it’s very often a specialist task. You find yourself needing more arms than an octopus and the patience of several major saints along with at least half a dozen implements you’d never imagine would be of use. The job becomes a multi-dimensional puzzle which seems to morph shape every time you look away or blink. Even when you’re adamant that everything is correct the end result can turn out looking nothing like you’d hoped for. I don’t claim to be an expert on seat re-covering, far from it in fact as you’ll see, but I’d done several some years ago and I’d been rather pleased with the outcomes. In one instance I’d managed to buy a genuine seat cover from the local dealer and fitting it proved to be a pleasant afternoon’s work in the sunshine. The next cover was a pattern item and not quite so easily sorted but in the end I was happy with the job and so was my mate who’d asked me to help him. So with some knowledge and understanding but not a great deal of expertise I had a passable level of confidence when taking on the seat of my RD350. Following my shock absorber upgrade earlier in the year it was apparent that the seat’s foam was rather lacking in comfort and effectively went flat during a ride. Although it would subsequently recover its shape the ride quality was still substantially less than ideal. As our opening shot shows the original cover was on crooked with the maker’s name severely ‘on the wonk’. It was also exhibiting signs of rippling and sagging typical of a decaying foam, plus it’d started to detach itself from the base. At the time I committed to sort this all out no one in the UK was making seat foams for round tanked RD250/350S so I ended up looking stateside via ebay. Eventually I found someone who had good feedback and had gone to the expense of making a mould for my model for Yamaha. Courtesy of my long suffering pal the foam was acquired and, good egg that he is, Simon brought it over as hand luggage during one of his visits to the UK. What followed turned out to be a nightmare that was only retrievable via an expert.
1 1/ Easy win this; strip off all the fixture and fittings from the seat base. With them all off the seat can be laid flat, ready to be worked on.