Types of Motorcycle Seats

Lyle Ellerbee

While all motorcycles come with a seat as standard equipment, it is not uncommon for a rider to change his seat almost immediately. I am sure you are thinking to yourself that might seem odd, but actually it is not. There are several types of seats, and depending on your application, you may choose to change your seat from its original stock version. If you make the decision to change your seat, you will have a few things to consider. First you must decide what your primary application will be. Will you be traveling long distances, or will you be cruising around town? What types of material do you prefer in a seat? Lets talk about some of your choices and how they might benefit you as you explore the options of upgrading your stock motorcycle seat.

Internal material- Once you decide your primary application, you can then determine what material will best suit your needs. You can choose from foam or gel. If you have decided that you will be primarily traveling in your little circle, running around town, back and forth to work or school, then the foam seat will most likely be sufficient for you. The foam seat will provide plenty of comfort for the occasional, or even daily short trip. On the other hand, if you have decided that your application will require riding longer distances and sitting for longer periods, then you might consider the gel seat. The gel seat will conform to your body, and will provide you with the necessary support needed to ride comfortably for longer periods. The support, coupled by the soft feel, will benefit you for touring applications.

External covering- When deciding on the external material you will choose for your seat, you will once again need to address your application. Will this seat be exposed to the sunlight for prolonged periods? Will you be riding in the rain, or sitting in the saddle for long rides? You will be able to choose from leather or vinyl. If you are once again riding your motorcycle in the short closed loop scenario, a vinyl covering will probably be sufficient. If you are parking your motorcycle in a garage and it won’t be exposed to the elements as much, vinyl might be all you need. However, if you will be riding for longer periods and are exposed to the elements, leather might be the better option for you. The leather covering will breath, it will hold up to exposure to sunlight better, and by treating your leather seat you will prolong the life well beyond the life of a vinyl seat.

The bottom line is when you are choosing your next motorcycle seat, take a few minutes to fully understand how you intend to ride your motorcycle. By doing so, you will ensure that you will be able to achieve your goals as you upgrade from your stock motorcycle seat.

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