Doug, 2011 R1200RT Polar Metallic
MSF #127350, Instructor, Louisiana Dept of Public Safety
Motorcycle Safety, Awareness & Operator Training Program
NAUI Instructor #36288
My zwei pfennig:
This being my first Beemer, I suppose I falsely assumed that the RT was a comfortable touring/sport m/c. The RT is clearly more sport tour than tour sport.
I consider the RT's seat foam to be somewhat comfortable; what is ironic is that the RT's seat is so much softer than all of the German cars I've owned/own. I'd say that my assessment is valid considering I'm speaking of experience here. I've owned every make of every German car... The RT seat is soft! Perhaps too soft???
What gets me is how far forward the seat presses me into the gas tank. I did not expect this. When I test rode the bike I did not notice this, but when I rode my new RT home, it was apparent after about ten minutes or so, that my family jewels were pressing into the gas tank, and I had to adjust my seating position every five minutes.
Lastly, in my quest to find a better aftermarket seat, numerous internet threads mention that the BMW Comfort Seat presses you even further into the gas tank... What to do? Is it the seat frame/adjustment that needs adjusting??? I'll have to inspect this. Outside of this I absolutley love the bike. I just needed some time to wrap my head around the fact that this ain't no H-D touring bike, that I've ridden during the last ten years...
You want another ironic twist? I just traded in my '10 Street Glide for another car. American make/model this time, lol.
In the end, it had come to the point that everytime I went for a ride, I chose the Beemer over the Street Glide.
I have discovered a way to make my K1300S seat feel like a sofa allowing me to ride all day long. I consume Advil regularly throughout the ride! I usually can get 200 - 250 miles on the seat without pain relievers but after that I have to get off, stretch and let blood flow to relieve the pain -- though only temporarily.
I started popping Advil in anticipation of a tough day at the track just two weeks ago and then for the four hour ride home thereafter. No issues at any point -- even with BMW's stock seat (which isn't that great)! And it's much cheaper than a Sergeant or a Russell upgrade.
14 R1200GSA, 93 R100R, 07 Honda 919, 15 RK No car is as fun to drive as any motorcycle is to ride.
I rode for several months after acquiring the bike, and the stock seat was just fine. One day's ride was even 500 miles in 9 hours. My legs were tired but the seat was fine. Not great, but yes, good enough. Normal rides were easy.
Over the next year, the seat became unbearable. There was extreme pressure on my tailbone, and bumps were getting painful.
Then I tried a change: Over the year, I had collected a tire kit, tool kit, and an anonymous book under the pillion seat. The tire kit was sliding forward under the drivers seat. REMOVING THE TIRE KIT SOLVED THE PROBLEM.
My best explanation is that the seat pan is suspended at the front and back on the corners and is designed to flex. The cargo kept the seat from flexing and created a pressure point. It's much better now.
It's a longshot, but check to see that your sotck seat is clear underneath to flex downward!
Eric * Columbia SC
Piedmont Red 2006 R1200RT
After coming off H-D's for the last twenty years and making the switch to my used (but not used up) 2007 R1200RT I find the RT's stock seat to be just fine. The Harley stock seats are referred to as hundred mile seats and the first thing I always did with the Harley's was to toss the stock seat and replace it with a Mustang seat. I don't know, maybe the RT's previous owner broke the seat in for me.
No matter where you go, there you are.
2007 BMW R1200RT
2005 R1200RT (It's new to me!)
Northern Virginia, USA
If you are not continuously learning, you are slowly getting bored.
That Kontour seat is a great idea! But not cheap. If I were to be riding my 94 RS for another five years or more I'd invest in it.
But since I plan to upgrade to a R1200R in the next two years I am in the process of reworking the stock seat set on my RS. I built up the foam and shaped it into bucket seat shapes, using very high grade foam for consistent support. I really need ventilation on my seat to avoid "swamp shorts" (far worse than Monkey Butt), so i designed the seat with a center airflow slot. I'll have pics to post later this week.
I agree, a bead-seat is great for ventilation. It is the only device I have tried that works for me, although I never tried an Airhawk. Guess I just don't like the look and the "add-on" style.
Bead-Seat: effective, and I don't have to speak Pakistani. Good in the rain, real fun with a nylon rainsuit on top of the wood beads! Add on look is so-so.
Gel seat pads: too mushy/wobbly and freakin hot! Ok in the rain.
Sheepskin: nice and soft, but too freakin hot! Rain is a real problem.
Airhawk: probably not bad, allows for air flow (VITAL) but I wonder if it also has the uncertain/unconnected feel to it? Probably good in the rain too.
Leather: I doubt it would help, cause I need airflow under me! Aging issues. Sun/Rain is not good, expensive and ineffective for me, cause I still need airflow, and leather doesn't breathe enough.
Kontour seat: expensive but I have read its very effective. If I were to plan to keep my bike for another five years as my primary ride I'd pay the $700+.
So, being the typical cheapo BMW rider, and with a jones to build things, I attacked my stock seat and made my own design. I should have it on the bike Friday for a test ride. I mounted some 1.25" flex tube under the LH side panel/fuel tank (can't see it at all) with an intake duct at the leading edge of the fairing. The duct will end in the slot of the seat just under my butt. Forced air flow! Pics to follow soon.
I still have my original Bill Mayer seat and he is the earliest seat builder I knew. His Son's carry on with their indepedent shops. BUT, that old seat is STILL my best seat, bar none. Dozens of BMWs later. Today, my GSA1200 sports Rocky Mayer seat, but wish it had a tad more of Dad's comfort built in! Its fine. It went on to Russel and they too have lost the touch of the Master. Close, just not the same. Anyhow, friend Bill Mayer had to be mentioned here as quite the visionary from the mid '70s building what turned out to be ticket to comfort on a bike. He should and would be proud to see what he started. So many options today exist, so shop wise. Randy
Other than those two issues, comfort is there for sure.
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Well, my new seat design will be put to the test this coming weekend, as I plan a five day circle around Lake Superior with my gal, and two other couples on their bikes. My gal did not like the stock rear seat or the Corbin Rumbleseat I had, especially since I had installed a Givi trunk with a backrest. The wide rear seam on the Corbin caused her to be almost sitting on the welt. The stock seat had practically no real padding as I found out after pulling off the vinyl cover.
So I stripped the vinyl off the stock seat set, built up the foam with high grade firm foam, and shaped it into two buckets. The rear I built up two inches for her cushy comfort. I built my section up a bit after cutting out some of the 20 year old foam, and shaped it into a subtle bucket, wider and flatter than stock. Then, for the vital airflow I need I cut a slot through the foam and pan. I have 1-1/4" flex tube, ducted from the front of the bike directly into the seat slot, for fresh air flow,....right, ya know "there". A bit like ram air flow for me, not the bike. Hopefully no more "swamp shorts" which is a level worse than Monkey Butt in my book.
After I did all the buildup, shaping, smoothing, layering, I took the seat set to a local professional auto upholstery shop to have the cover made. He charged me $211 to make the cover from high grade marine vinyl. The foam was $50, sundry other material was $40 (3M spray adhesive cans, 1/4" foam sheet, 1/8" acetate carpet). so my total is $301.