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Topic-icon Seats are Parts???

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3 years 8 months ago #405 by Wobbly
Replied by Wobbly on topic Seats are Parts???

1559 wrote: Progress on my cheap, recently purchased, fleesed bay Russell seat for the RS.....

Great resto !!

Since all the seat foams act like holding a wet sponge next to the steel seat pan, I prefer to paint the inside surface of the pan with RustOleum or POR15. Sometimes I also cut a 5 mil plastic sheet to go between the foam and steel. Anything to keep that water away.

Don't hide 'em, Ride 'em !!
#15150

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3 years 8 months ago #410 by 12144
Replied by 12144 on topic Seats are Parts???
I am leaning toward the Russell. I can stop in and have it done if my summer trip works. The picture of the seat got my attention. What Rack is that. I am also in need of a rear rack. I guess I need to start looking on Ebay again. I do have a corbin seat that came with the bike. Took it off pronto. Not a big fan. Never had one I liked but they seem to be on a lot of bikes I have bought.

Eric Repking
currently R75/5 toaster
R75/5 Hack
R100 RT
R100 S (clone)
R100GS oilhead

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3 years 8 months ago - 3 years 8 months ago #411 by 1559
Replied by 1559 on topic Seats are Parts???
The Mayer Family Dynasty
The Russell “Day-Long” saddle was invented by Bill Mayer in the 1970s. It has a unique design that incorporates a lateral spring to support the rider’s weight resting on the “wings” of the saddle at its widest point. Bill Mayer sold the rights to produce the Day-Long saddle to Don Russell in the mid-1980s. After Don Russell’s death, his wife Donna eventually sold the business to its current owner, who operates using the Russell name out of Shasta Lake, California.

Bill Mayer’s two sons, Bill Mayer III and Rick Mayer, eventually went into business for themselves building custom saddles without the spring suspension system (which neither of them believe is necessary). That was a patent bought by the new owner of Russell and forbids ANY other maker from using that design. Sons, Bill (“Rocky”) Mayer operates out of Ojai, California (west of Los Angeles) and Rick Mayer’s shop is in Anderson, California, not far from Shasta Lake. All three companies build saddles with “wings.” Rick has had issues w/ many riders because of his divorce a couple years ago ( SEE ADV Rick Mayer Seats RMS ) . Rocky makes a good saddle. My Rick Mayer BMW seat is from ebay and the other seats from ebay under $200. Stock BMW R series seat suck!

As explained on Russell’s website: “The wide ‘wings’ are there to provide outer buttock support so that less body weight will be concentrated toward the center.” While Russell uses a spring to support weight placed on the wings, Bill Mayer replaces most of the stock foam with a molded foam cushion with wings. Rick Mayer removes some of the stock foam, glues foam blocks onto the remaining foam, and then forms the wings by hand, carving away parts of the added foam with an electric knife. Many makers use a series of foams today, a cross section shows 'layers' of different foams.

Russell saddles not only had relatively soft foam, the spring provides even more cushioning. This is done by the riders weight, not all springs are the same wire diameter. This includes your riding suite and boots, a whole package. In contrast, the Corbin saddles have very little cushioning. The foam is relatively dense and there is not much of it and not as wide as other seats. The very firm feel of the Corbin saddles probably explains why they aren’t as popular with the long-distance riding community as the saddles built by Russell and the Mayer brothers.

The makers all use a series of different types of foam & densities to complete your seat, wings and cushioning systems. My recent ebay Russell is a single density foam, must be an early design. ???.

The Russell saddle I’ve owned have truly been “Day-Long” comfortable1000 miles plus/ day Riding long days also means it's NOT just a seat thing. The bike’s handlebars and riding position make a huge difference.
But, despite the lack of cushioning, the Corbin saddles have also been extremely comfortable for some long-distance riding. The secret to the Corbin saddles comfort is their shape. Instead of building saddles on a stock seat pan, Corbin designs a custom seat pan with a nicely shaped “bucket.” They work for some. Russell uses your old seat pan. I like to heavily modify my BMW seat pan for a better fitment and more frame support. Many riders don't remember to check their seat adjustment to the frame.

Although the saddles could have been modified based on photographs, it was helpful for the makers to be able to see a rider sitting on the bike using the stock saddle. By seeing them on the stock saddle, Makers are able to determine exactly where to locate the “wings” of the modified saddle and how wide to make them. They see you knee and leg positions. The first step in the modification process involved removing the stock seat cover. Next, the stock seat foam was removed from the sides of the saddle and large blocks of a higher density foam were glued in place or added where needed by the maker. A section of foam from the very center of the saddle where the two pressure points would be can be replaced with a block of softer/ harder foam, depending on the rider. A heating element can also be added by makers that they installed on top of the modified seat.

The real artwork involved in the process is the shaping of the added foam with electric knives and grinders. Makers shape the top of the saddle with a grinder, forming a slight pocket. It's quit an art.

Before a new cover is fabricated, the modified saddle goes back on the bike for a trial sitting. With each of the Russell saddles made, this is the point where you find out that the seat needs to be raised in the front to the needs of any rider. I had my Russell adjusted twice over the first year because I 'slid - forward' issue. That changed my back and shoulders angle and affected my long rides. Pain then comes into play.

Options to Consider ::
Over the years, I’ve tried a variety of aftermarket saddles, including Russell saddles, Corbin saddles . The Russell saddles and the Corbin saddles are at opposite ends of the spectrum with respect to cushioning they provide. Sargent, KonTour, Hartco, Mr. Ed’s Moto, Saddlemen - offers ready-made, off-the-shelf seats, Cee-Bailey, Seat-Concepts are a few of many who make seats. & & Beemerboneyard, eBay, Re-Pscycle also have seats. Keep a watchful eye out.

The Rack you see on my photos is one I designed / fabricated along with a complete rack system and modifications to seat pan and cowling, side panniers carriers, gusseted welded joynts, multiple points of attachments for load, 1 gallon water, able to attach flat aluminum rack with 1 bolt to complete the rack system. Accessing the tools under the seat is fairly easy with what work I did. The headstock on my RS is also completely re-inforced for load and lighting systems.








. Harry


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Last edit: 3 years 8 months ago by 1559.

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3 years 8 months ago - 3 years 8 months ago #412 by 12144
Replied by 12144 on topic Seats are Parts???
forget the seat. I want a rack. :woohoo: I actually blew it this winter since I am not that far from Bill Mayer and could have had it done. I guess he would use the existing seat pan. I hate trashing a perfectly nice seat but It may come to that. :ohmy:

Eric Repking
currently R75/5 toaster
R75/5 Hack
R100 RT
R100 S (clone)
R100GS oilhead
Last edit: 3 years 8 months ago by 12144.

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3 years 8 months ago - 3 years 7 months ago #413 by 1559
Replied by 1559 on topic Seats are Parts???
Stock R series bmw seats SUCK big time. modify the pan first & ....... spring for a new seat and riding will be sooooo much more joyful

BTW, that's my seat rack design and hydration system for an RS.

. Harry


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Last edit: 3 years 7 months ago by 1559.

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3 years 7 months ago #568 by 6920
Replied by 6920 on topic Seats are Parts???
I know the history of the Russell's and the Mayer's. But this is the first that i had heard that you can have a day-long made for an airhead. Does anyone have any more information about them for our airheads. I would probably have one made for my '92RT rather than my '77S (which just begs for me to flog the pi$$ out of her in the corners!)

thank you....

sdc

'77 R100RS (but now an S), '92 R100RT

Love them old girls....

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