1. Having trouble logging in? Try closing your browser and re-opening it. If that doesn't work, try a different browser or device. The site will be updated soon to resolve these browser issues.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Dismiss Notice

Cutting down seat height on 77D?

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by XS650D, Apr 25, 2021.

  1. MaxPete

    MaxPete Lucille, Betty, Demi & Gretel: I ask, THEY decide. XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    No problemo.

  2. arcticXS

    arcticXS XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    And that is one of the many reasons HD does not tickle my fancy much. Well, except for a Storz street tracker or a Stonebridge Motor Co Featherbed Sportster. And briefly the XR1200, until I realized it's tonnage
  3. nj1639

    nj1639 Paleo-simplistic Top Contributor

    Here's a pictorial. Top pic is the underside of the upper portion removed.
    Middle is the portion removed setting on the finished product and lastly the finished seat.

    Looking at the middle pic you can see the remnants of a marked line. I measured up from the bottom of the seat pan two inches and scribed a line. Taking our fine toothed wedding cake knife (shh!) I cut in on a slight angle upwards towards the center, lifting the foam to be removed as I went along to eyeball my progress. The foam doesn't slice smoothly, maybe with an electric knife? We don't have a frivolity of laziness such as that around here.

    Looking at the underside of the foam in the top pic will show what the top of the foam looked like when done cutting, a little rough, however the seat cover is an aftermarket Saddleman and it's construction covers that roughness well.

    Once a cover is used for a cut down, it will show holes if tried to be put back on a regular height foam.

    I suppose if I ever wanted to restore this foam it would be possible to adhesive the pieces together and get a new cover, however I do have a spare stock foam on the shelf.

    This seat has been trimmed in the front - foam, pan and chrome trim for use with an xs750 kneedent tank, two inches back. I will say that lowering the seat has put my knees right where they belong for that tanks feel. For laughs I put that trimmed piece on the finished seat and set down on her to reminisce........eh, nope.

    IMG_0024.JPG IMG_0023.JPG IMG_0022.JPG
    Team Junk and arcticXS like this.
  4. XS650D

    XS650D XS650 Junkie

  5. XS650D

    XS650D XS650 Junkie

    Nj1639 thx big time for providing that info and pics. I think I’m going to give that a go. Jus need to decide if I want to use the original skin or pick up a new skin from Mike’s Xanax. I see a 76 skin that should work hopefully. Can u estimate how much or how many inches u lowered your stance when sittin on the bike after this mod?
  6. XS650D

    XS650D XS650 Junkie

    Confused on which piece u used for the seat. The top or the bottom piece u cut off. Thx
  7. fredintoon

    fredintoon Fred Hill, S'toon. Top Contributor

    Hi 'D
    if thick-soled riding boots don't work & if your son is in need of female companionship, hang a sidecar on the bike.
    A sidecar rig stands up by itself and is a great chick magnet.
  8. XS650D

    XS650D XS650 Junkie

    Good point Fred! Lol
    gggGary and RustiePyles like this.
  9. ThatXS650Guy

    ThatXS650Guy More Sparky than Speed Racer XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    North GA
    Probably get all the drop you need with a 1" fork lowering kit.
    RustiePyles likes this.
  10. nj1639

    nj1639 Paleo-simplistic Top Contributor

    I used the lower piece.
    Measure the height of your seat foam, subtract two inches and you'll get the estimate of how much was taken off. I say estimate because my cutting of the foam was two inches at the outside edge and slightly angled up towards the middle - maybe a two and a half inch crown?, giving the finished seat the look it has in the last pic.

    Out to the pole barn and doing some measurements.......
    Raw seat foam looks like four and three quarters thick, so I trimmed two and three quarter inches off from the outside edge towards the middle but angled up, emphasized angled up and crowned.
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2021
    gggGary likes this.
  11. XSLeo

    XSLeo XS650 Guru Top Contributor

    bfore you do much to the bike would go to a shop that installs house carpeting. Ask then for some scraps of carpet padding. The thicker the better.
    Might even get it free.
    Now with the seat removed cut pieces of the carpet padding to fit just inside the frame ontop of the battery. Fro just behind the tank back to the rear fender. Cut as many oieces that size to come up to the top of the frame or a buit higher. How cut pieces the same length but a bit wider than the frame. Maube two pieces.
    With these all in places habe you son try it for height. If this is comfortabke for him then you have a place to start. Fitting an old seat that fits your bike shouldn't be hard to do. Even if the cover isn't pretty it can be use as a place to start. With the old seat cut the foam off about 1/2 to 12 icnh thick. Just enough to cxovr the rough stuff of the seat pan.
    From that point the carpet padding can be latered on to get a comfortable seat and not be to thick. You can leave the padding pieces a bit over size. Most any upholstery shop can trim the padding so it matches the stock foam pice and cover it.
    I have 75 that needs a new seat. Untill I decide jusy what seat I use the seat pan with a layer or wo of carpet padding on seat pan. Or I just ride on the seat pan.
    I have short legs myself. About 27 1/2 inches. Once he gets some roadtime on the bike and learns the how of iot the short legs aren't that big a problem.
    Team Junk, MaxPete, GLJ and 1 other person like this.
  12. nj1639

    nj1639 Paleo-simplistic Top Contributor

    The top is what I trimmed off, the bottom is uncut except to fit with an xs750 tank......the nose I removed from the bottom foam is around here somewhere... IMG_0025.JPG
    MaxPete and member28833 like this.
  13. member28833

    member28833 Race the wind Top Contributor

    nj, by the looks of your pics it appears that you have a set of "Special" shocks? Just a tad shorter..
    I'd say with just slightly shorter shocks, but not so short they ruin the centerstand ability, and a custom cut down seat, slightly raised fork tubes in the triple clamps as well.
    Low enough but not so low it adversely affects the handling.
    Team Junk, MaxPete and nj1639 like this.
  14. nj1639

    nj1639 Paleo-simplistic Top Contributor

    Even a blind hog finds acorns sometimes......lol

    Not sure which bike pic of mine you're looking at with the raised fork tubes in the triple, mebbe my old '83 (pic above) as that xs750 fork swap gives about an inch and a half more tube to work with, and it had Special shocks.....sometimes.

    I'll add that the forks on my current '77 (pic in post #4 in this thread) are about 1mm proud of the upper clamp, no more, and the shocks are something gleaned along the way, The seat? Well yeah, fully involved on that with both bikes but differently.
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2021
    MaxPete likes this.
  15. hovel

    hovel ol' stupid XS650.com Supporter

    NJ1639m you did a damn fine job on that seat.
    OK, but an electric knife is the ONLY way to cut foam. Seems to me that at one time we all were told we had to have one but now they're relegated to the back of some kitchen drawer. Mine made it out to the shop and it has earned its keep.
    RustiePyles and nj1639 like this.
  16. XS650D

    XS650D XS650 Junkie

    Decided to look for an old worn out seat from 74 thru 77 . Tried to get the skin of mine but the bolts were rusted bad and broke plus the small tabs that hold the skin were breaking. I think age has won on this seat. Don’t want to totally ruin it as visually it still looks an works great! Thx for all the advise. What an amazing forum!!
    nj1639 and RustiePyles like this.
  17. RustiePyles

    RustiePyles Semper Fortis XS650.com Supporter Top Contributor

    Yep, those electrified reciprocating turkey carvers do a fine job of whittling down seat foam. You can pick em up at any thrift store for a buck or two. A 90 degree 1/4" arbor air motor with a 320g roloc disc is also a must for anyone doing detailed shaping on seat foam.
    nj1639 likes this.
  18. nj1639

    nj1639 Paleo-simplistic Top Contributor

    Duly noted if'n I venture that way again.

Share This Page