Thursday, 20 February 2014

Re-shaping a BMW R1200 GS front seat

Unless you are a giant or maybe German (or a German giant) for most of us the GS Adventure's seat height is too high, even adjusting it down to its lowest setting it is 889 mm or 35"! 
So lots of people buy a lower seat. These are expensive, even second hand on eBay they go for over £100. I wanted it to be perfect for me and to look stock so I thought about reshaping my own seat.
After a bit of research and advice from a local car interior place. I decided to have a go!
The guy from Auto trimming said the best way to get the right height and perfect shape for my bum's comfort, was to take a little off then try the height, then a little more, try it and so on till it was right. Very time consuming and not really practical for a shop. 

The original seat.

So the first thing was to take the cover off, just pull out the staples from underneath with some pliers. I left the back attached so I had the alignment as the original,

Then I started to cut with a long bladed knife and then a hacksaw blade, but  neither of these gave a great result and were hard to control.
So I eventually tried an angle grinder! I know it sounds mad, but by drawing the grinder across the surface very gently (not pushing like you would normally do) you can 'shave' the foam (it is quite firm) very smoothly. I marked the shape I wanted with a marker pen and took some off, putting the seat back on the bike trying the height/shape and then repeated till it was spot on. The key is not to take off too much at one time, I think you could use one of the long finger type sanders as well, they should work well.

I slimmed the sides as well as the middle to reduced 'leg spread' keeping the back area flat, but did not touch the very back edge so the still attached cover fit over snugly.

Then a a thin layer of upholsterers foam is lightly glued over the top to smooth any slight imperfections, and the seat cover refitted.
I can now get my feet comfortably on the floor and the seat shape suits my bum better and I think it still looks stock.