by Florian Neuhauser
as seen on RoadRUNNER Motorcycle Touring & Travel
One of my biggest complaints about riding our ’99 Triumph Speed Triple has always been the seat. Even though I prefer a hard seat to a softer one, the stock option just isn’t comfortable for a long day in the saddle, especially multiple days on the road. The Race Tech suspension is set up sporty, so if the asphalt is less than perfect, it won’t matter if you’re in the middle of a picturesque landscape—you’ll be looking for the first smooth road to turn off on. The stock seat is too slippery when I wear pants made out of anything except leather. Of course, the rain only exaggerates this problem.
When it came time to look for a new seat, we chose Saddlemen for their Gel Channel technology. The channel relieves pressure on your bottom and at the end of the spine, thereby greatly enhancing all-day riding comfort. It can also be color matched to your motorcycle. Our lime-green Speed Triple is difficult to match, but Saddlemen got it just about perfect without even seeing the bike. The other feature of this technology is the gel inserts. At first I thought the seat might be too soft, but after a day of riding without even thinking about pain, the seat has verified itself. The different material also solved the slipping problem. I now feel comfortable and secure.
In addition, the skilled seat makers at Saddlemen’s California factory reshaped the seat slightly to come up higher in the rear for more control during aggressive riding.
We also sent in our passenger seat for a matching cover. Because we never know how a custom seat will finally work out, we found a cheap seat pan online and used it for the custom work. In retrospect, that was unnecessary.
Ever since the new seat was installed, the Speed Triple has seen a lot more exercise.
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Saddlemen Custom Seat
RiderMagazine.com's Greg Drevenstedt and his girlfriend, Carrie found relief in Saddlemen's SaddleGel Gel Pads on a week-long tour test to Redwood National Park last summer on a Kawasaki Concours 14. After a couple hundred of miles and a miserable case of "monkey-butt," they were very happy to have the gel pads to be able to continue their ride in relative comfort. Read the article here.
In the early ‘90s, the experienced riders at Saddlemen figured out a way to incorporate all the benefits of gel into a motorcycle seat and quickly learned it was far more comfortable than standard seats for a variety of reasons. For one, SaddleGel isolates engine and road vibration, a common cause of rider fatigue. Saddlegel is a molded solid with fluid-like properties that will not slide to one side or move around in your seat like air or water in a plastic bag; instead the proprietary design eliminates pressure points at the hip bones and tail bone by evenly distributing your weight across the surface of the seat. Otherwise, pressure points or “hot spots” can hinder blood flow, causing pain and discomfort. Normal circulation is never lost on a seat with SaddleGel, and it keeps your rear end comfortable on a long ride, and ready to respond quickly as road conditions change. Read more about SaddleGel here.
Refurbished Touring Seat For 1991 Machine Gets Enthusiastic Approval From Owner
Saddlemen recently received an e-mail from satisfied customer Jim B., of Virginia. Jim had us refurbish and re-cover one of our Road Sofa touring seat packages, and sent comments and photos our way after he installed it on his GoldWing.
I think others may think the seat is an on the shelf item, but when they call to order like I did, then you learn that your company actually asks you questions in regards to your height & weight to make the seat an exact, ‘your size’ seat, that will fit & wear perfectly for years to come.
I ride my bike year-round unless it is icy out, so my bike is starting to get up there in mileage and some paint fade, but I can tell you my seat is perfect in fit & comfort and a real pleasure to enjoy while out on my ‘ol Wing.
Thanks again for the superb customer service and going beyond the distance to make sure everything was done correctly and professionally, and in a very timely manner.
Our thanks to Jim for his feedback and continued patronage. We're pleased to know the seat works so well for you.
Whether producing a brand-new seat from one of our popular seat lines, or customizing or refurbishing, an existing seat, we at Saddlemen look forward to helping improve the riding experience of our customers. That's the cornerstone of our business. We hope we can improve your ride as well...
Explorer Seat With Backrest Part Of Upgrade Project For 2005 Softail Deluxe
Saddlemen’s Explorer Seat with Driver Backrest was the choice for a comfortable, long-range, two-up touring saddle for one of Hot Bike Magazine’s editors. This revamped 2005 model Harley-Davidson Softail Deluxe is featured in the magazine’s October 2010 issue (Volume 42, Number 10), starting on page 68.
As described in the motorcycle seat section of our website: “The deep, wide contours of the Explorer™ makes this the perfect long distance saddle for both rider and passenger. The unique Split Cushion design reduces seating pressure for maximum long-range comfort. SaddleGel™ comes standard for both the driver and the passenger. SaddleGel™ reduces tail bone pressure and increases circulation…allowing you to ride longer. For your next trip of 10 or 10,000 miles, the Explorer™ is the comfort king by which all others must be judged!”
Industry insiders know the benefits of Saddlemen design and quality. We invite you to find out for yourselves. Whether with a new seat, a custom retrofit, or our wide range of motorcycle luggage, we at Saddlemen are proud to show what our expertise, craftsmanship and technology can do to make riding more enjoyable.
Saddlemen Modifies Two-Up Seat From Victory Cross Country For Event And Advertising Photography Duties
Click on the images above to view them at full size.
Saddlemen had the interesting opportunity recently to design and produce a highly modified seat for Victory Motorcycles’ new camera bike kit. This kit allows compatible stock Victory machines to be quickly and temporarily converted for on-road photographic use. Besides the Saddlemen re-worked saddle, the setup also includes shielding for the rear wheel, running gear and exhaust.
Our rebuild included a special front-and-back pad on the driver’s backrest for use by both riders, a modified passenger backrest with storage pouch, our famous SaddleGel inserts in the seating areas, and a new custom seat cover.
Victory plans to use this setup for their own corporate advertising use, as well as making it available for loan or rental.
Photos provided courtesy of Victory Motorcycles.
Victory Motorcycles is a part of Polaris Industries, also makers of snowmobiles and ATVs.
At Saddlemen we thrive on the chance to show our expertise and creativity, no matter how unusual the project.
Retailer Tries Our King Seat – Back Pain And Discomfort Left Behind
Dan Ludwig, owner of OneStopMoto.com sells lots of Saddlemen seats and luggage. After hearing all the positive comments about our saddles, he decided to give our King Seat a try on his Harley-Davidson to see if it would improve his riding experience.
Dan contacted us to let us know how the seat worked for him…
“I just installed a new Saddlemen King Seat with backrest on my 2001 Fat Boy. I have been shopping for a new seat for some time – because of back soreness after only an hour or so riding.”
“I heard a lot of hype about this seat, so I decided to give it a try, but not expecting too much. Well, I was pleasantly surprised.”
“After several hours of riding, I was trying to figure out why my back wasn’t sore. I noticed I was not sitting on my tail bone like most seats. I understand this is attributed to the unique “split-cushion” design of the King Seat. Keeping your weight off your tailbone is critical to keep the seat comfortable and your back in check, especially for long rides. Additionally, I adjusted the backrest significantly forward (yes, you can do this with the King Seat) which helped me maintain an upright sitting position, and allowed me to lean back and rest as I rode, without being way back on the bike. I believe this also helped to relieve back stress.”
“Bottom line is this. If you want a good looking seat with great lumbar support to relieve back pain, and a comfortable ride, this is the seat for you.”
We are always happy to hear such positive feedback. Our goal and design philosophy has always been to provide greater comfort and more enjoyable riding time for our customers. We know what our technology and craftsmanship can do, and it’s gratifying to see that our seats are helping the riding public improve their time on the road.
For more feedback from real riders, please check out our Testimonial page.
We invite you to see what our expertise and technology can do to your motorcycling experience.
Challenging the Roads of the “Roof of the World”
Recently, a friend of Saddlemen, Joe Bonnello, was one of a group of five trail riders braving the highest roads in the world, in the northwestern Himalayan mountains, on Indian-made Royal Enfield motorcycles. Joe made sure to take along a Saddlemen Gel Pad when challenging these largely unpaved roads. “I thank you from the bottom of my ass. Without the gels, I would not have survived,” said Bonnello. “The shocks on those Enfields are simply non-existent!”
The group conquered the highest road on Earth, the Khardungla Pass, listed at nearly 18,400 feet above sea level! Located in the northern-most province of India, Jammu and Kashmir, this area borders both Pakistan and China, and is only about 500 miles straight east from Kabul, Afghanistan!
The distinctive, bright yellow landmark and road safety signs seen in some of the photos are from the HIMANK organization, and often use “Burma Shave” style slogans to encourage safety on these wild roads.
Check out the photographs linked below. Give them a mouse-click to see them full size.
To help better inform the public about the benefits of SaddleGel, we have an “FAQ” (Frequently Asked Questions) page to our website’s support area. For more info check the following link at saddlemen.com:
We love to show our pride in what SaddleGel can do for you!
After using our S2600 Deluxe Sissy Bar Bag on two European road trips, Saddlemen customers William and Gerlide D. emailed us complimenting our bag’s design and value. “I must admit I was thoroughly impressed with the quality of your product… The contents of the bag stayed dry through heavy rain. After many miles the bag has retained its shape and great looks.”
“I have owned other brands of bags that were not up to the standard that you have set… I am looking forward to many more trips and miles with your fantastic product. Thank you again for a great product at a great price. I will recommend Saddlemen to everyone I can.”
William and Gerlide also sent along some “postcard” photos from their tours, as they traveled through Germany, Italy and the Czech Republic, visiting places like Venice, Pisa and the Alps…
To learn more about the experiences of satisfied Saddlemen customers, and the benefits our technology and workmanship can offer to you, please click on the following link: Saddlemen Feedback and Testimonials
“We have installed Saddlemen Gel Seats on all of our bikes for many years. When we got the Wing, we went for a ride and Sue tapped me on the shoulder and asked me if the bike had a gel seat (which it didn’t). She could tell the difference.
She then asked me (in a very pointed way), ‘When would we get one?’
‘As soon as I can call Saddlemen,’ I replied. I did, and now she’s happy.”
Larry and Susan L.
For the people here at Saddlemen, nothing is more gratifying than knowing that our products are helping the riding public get more enjoyment, time and miles out of their seats and luggage.
To learn more about the experiences of satisfied Saddlemen customers, and the benefits our technology and workmanship can offer to you, please click on the following link:
“If you need more room than this, you might want to think about leaving the bike at home and driving.”
That’s the advice of Steve Bohn, reviewing Saddlemen’s BR4100 Dresser Back Seat Bag in the August 2008 issue of American Rider magazine.
The Dresser Back Seat Bag is a very handy piece of motorcycle luggage that uses the passenger space of a two-up seat when you’re riding solo. It’s designed to fit perfectly between the rider and Tour-Pak on the back seat of all Dresser models (but is made to fit securely on a variety of different seats). The reviewer also appreciated how the bag helps avoid overloading the rear axle by placing weight further forward than many other luggage options.
Bohn was impressed by the storage capacity of the Back Seat Bag. “I was able to fill the bag with 15 T-shirts, two long sleeve T-shirts, one sweatshirt, four pairs of jeans, three pairs of shorts, one pair of tennies, one pair of sandals, and a shower kit, with room to spare – this thing is huge.” He also complemented the bag’s ease of installation. “Attaching the DBSB is a breeze.”
The BR4100 is also ruggedly made. “The bag is constructed from 1200 denier Saddle Tuff and leather-like vinyl, wrapped around a lightweight, rigid skeleton.”
The American Rider reviewer found that the mounting system was very secure, and although the bag was designed for touring bikes with a Tour-Pak, it will also work on bikes without one. Adjustable straps allow the bag to fit securely with other bike and seat layouts.
The Dresser Back Seat Bag has numerous storage and attachment features, including backpack straps for easy toting; convenient accessory straps that allow easy strapping down and access to jackets, chaps or roll bags; elastic mesh netting pouches for quick and easy access to maps and other small items. Of particular interest was the insulated pouches, which keep up to six cans of your favorite beverage cold.
The BR4100 retails for a suggested $139.95, and is available here or by contacting your local Drag Specialties or Parts Unlimited dealer.