Just like everything else on planet Earth, motorcycle seats get old and deteriorate. Many are worth restoring or repairing, but some are beyond help. This Motobécane scooter seat probably should have been tossed. The cover was cracked and stained. The spindly grab strap was torn in two. The foam looked like it was chiseled from a Space Shuttle heat shield.
Aside from the frame, we pretty much had to toss everything. You’d be hard-pressed to find a more dramatic example of how we’re able to transform a damaged seat into something good-as-new. Compare the before (above) and after (below) pics. Hard to believe the restored scooter seat could have been salvaged from the remnants of the old seat. New motorcycle seat foam, new vinyl and a brand new grab-strap. Not only good-as-new…better!
After an unsuccessful attempt to recover the original seat on his Honda, the bike’s owner finally raised the white flag and brought it to us. You’d think replacing the seat cover for a street bike would be a piece of cake, but that’s not always the case.
It’s pretty common for a motorcycle seat to lose its shape over time. This one needed to be rebuilt — sections of foam were damaged and badly compressed. No wonder the owner was having so much trouble installing a replacement cover!
In addition to rebuilding and beveling the foam, the owner wanted to make a few changes in the look. Not a problem if you have the right tools and plenty of experience.
Most of our motorcycle seats and gel pad inserts are custom manufactured to owner specifications. But, every now and then, an owner likes the original seat cover and simply wants a new one. In those cases, we order a factory-made or OEM style seat and go from there. Believe it or not, look-alike seat covers don’t always fit well. Fasteners go bad and seat foam deteriorates.
We recently encountered those problems installing a new OEM seat cover for a Suzuki. Before installing the cover, we had to plump the foam and repair the damaged rivets. That did the trick. The seat cover was designed for the bike, but without these adjustments it wouldn’t have fit.