Honda CX 500 Forum banner
1 - 20 of 34 Posts

·
Registered
1982 CX500C
Joined
·
82 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I need a different seat. I’ve put up with the original because it’s the only thing I didn’t like about the bike when I bought it, but it’s time to find something more comfortable.

Sitting in front of the split is too short for my legs and sitting behind it is too long for my arms. I can reach the handlebars just fine but it keeps my elbows straighter than is comfortable for feeling in control, especially during sharper turns.

Sitting right on the split is ideal but I end up sliding forward, so I need to find a seat that’s flat.

A direct replacement is ideal but I’m not opposed to having it redone at a shop/upholstery service if necessary. I’m not concerned about keeping the original leather or resale value.

I did find one thread about the GL1000 seats being a direct fit but the pics are no longer viewable and it didn’t specify if the year matters.

As always, all input is appreciated.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
1983 cx650c
Joined
·
1,171 Posts
The seat on the 650 I have is of similar design and I have the same issues. I recovered mine with a stock pattern cover (eBay) with minor difficulty. The seat pans are not easy to change but a a competent shop could modify the foam and sew a new cover to fit,, for several hundred dollars is my guess. That's why I compromised, as well as maintained originality. It's not terribly uncomfortable for the distances I use the bike for. The cover I got is good vinyl fabric and attached with narrow crown air staple gun. Short staples,, had to order thousands as I recall but cheap. Has held up well and decent looking.
 

·
Registered
1983 cx650c
Joined
·
1,171 Posts
If you go the custom rebuild on your pan, shop around,, local guys here wanted stupid money to just attach the cover I bought. It does have buttons holding the material tight as original which was a pain. Yours would be nearly flat so easier to make pattern and sew. They saw and sand the foam, as well as glue on new layers if required. It's spendy though,,,,,
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,369 Posts
Is the pan in good condition?.....
If you have rust maybe consider a new base...
Plastic will allow staples....fibreglass often rivets..
 

·
Registered
CX650 motor project into a CX500 Turbo Frame - ongoing
Joined
·
205 Posts
You could try removing the cover and cutting some of the foam out yourself and putting the fabric back on. Cutting that ridge back 1.5" inches might be enough, the fabric might not lay quite right as it's got that pattern in it, but at least this way you can sort out the shape of what you want first before you get a pro to cover it if it comes to that.

Good thing is the stock seats are pretty cheap so I'd not be worried about butchering one.
 

·
Registered
CX650 motor project into a CX500 Turbo Frame - ongoing
Joined
·
205 Posts
Also, looking at the goldwing seats for the 82-ish years, I don't think you'd fix your problem because it looks like the driver seat is as short or shorter than the CX500 seat.

Musical instrument Grass Plant Automotive design Wind instrument




Footwear Synthetic rubber Comfort Composite material Bumper


That ^ CX500 custom 1982 seat is on ebay for about $100 shipped. Thought maybe the ruler could give you an idea of it that seat there might be an option.

The GL1100 seat pan does like nearly identical to the CX500, but it's rear bracket is slightly different but looks easily compatible or modifiable.


GL:

Automotive lighting Hood Motor vehicle Bumper Automotive exterior


CX500c:

Tool Musical instrument accessory Bumper Automotive exterior Denim
 

Attachments

·
Registered
1978 CX500 "The Grub", 1983 GL650I "Nimbus"
Joined
·
11,444 Posts
If your legs are long enough that you want to move the seat back, you might consider adding some thickness to the front, too. I'm in the early stages of doing that to a GL seat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,697 Posts
The hump is in the wrong place for most people. It needs moving back about 2 inches and reshaping . I need to do that on my 650 Custom.I have a spare seat so will do that one first.
 

·
Super Moderator
'84 CX650E that is evolving into a GL500
Joined
·
17,728 Posts
All GL1100s came with the same basic seat, although the Aspencade's was a bit fancier and you could move it fore & aft without loosening the bolts as was required for the Standard and Interstate models.

When the seat on my 1100 split we were broke so I bought some vinyl and re-covered it myself. By the time it was starting to look tired we were a bit better off so I took the spare seat I had acquired to be done by a pro. I wanted the bump moved back as far as possible but he could only move it a bit because of the step in the pan.
It's not a huge difference but it does make a difference.

I don't know if these pics will have any relevancy to the CX500C but here's the one he did (left) and the one I did (right)
Automotive tire Hood Motor vehicle Synthetic rubber Automotive design


old seat
Tire Wheel Fuel tank Automotive fuel system Vehicle


"new" seat
Tire Wheel Land vehicle Fuel tank Plant
 

·
Registered
1982 CX500C
Joined
·
82 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks to all for the tips/suggestions/ideas. This’ll be a good winter spare time project.

I’m going to start by calling a few places and see where the most-recommended upholstery-type shop is for this kind of thing. Then I’ll take it in to get an initial idea of what needs to be done.

i’m very comfortable and experienced in metal work and have the tools necessary to modify the pan if needed, so I’ll do that and have the professional mold, cover and mount the seat padding. Upholstery type work never goes well for me and I want it right the first time.

I’ll post pics with future updates.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,369 Posts
Sounds like you got things covered.. one thing ive noticed locally a lot of "car" places dont do well with bike seats.. but airplane and boat upholsterers/fitters are up to custom work ...word of mouth locally will guide you.
Look forward to the pics
 

·
Super Moderator
'84 CX650E that is evolving into a GL500
Joined
·
17,728 Posts
If you can't find someone that works on bikes look for someone who does snowmobile seats. The guy who did the seat for my GoldWing (& the tops for both of my sidecars) does a lot of boats and custom cars; I don't think he had done many motorcycle seats before mine but he's near a big lake that freezes over so he's done a lot of snowmobile seats. In fact, he did my seat with the same vinyl he uses for sled seats, which is a lot heavier than the original vinyl and (apparently) stays flexible at very low temperatures.
 

·
Registered
1978 CX500 "The Grub", 1983 GL650I "Nimbus"
Joined
·
11,444 Posts
The seat pan usually follows the frame, so unless you also modify the frame, there might not be much you can change there. I think you'll be able to do it all in the foam.
 

·
Registered
1982 CX500C
Joined
·
82 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The boat/aircraft/snowmobile places are good ideas - not sure what’s in this area but I’ll keep them in mind.

As to pan modification, I figured if anything needed to be done, it would be to add a “shell” to the forward part of the seat in order to level it out with the back, but that remains to be seen.
 

·
Registered
1983 cx650c
Joined
·
1,171 Posts
To achieve the flatness you want carving the bump down and adding foam to the front area seems possible to me. No pan modification required.
 

·
Registered
1982 CX500C
Joined
·
82 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I’m not assuming the pan will have to be modified - I’m just prepared to do it if needed. I try to think through the steps and possibilities for projects like this so I don’t get surprised by hang ups.

I’ll see what the upholsterer thinks/wants done before I do anything.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Also, looking at the goldwing seats for the 82-ish years, I don't think you'd fix your problem because it looks like the driver seat is as short or shorter than the CX500 seat.

View attachment 211353



View attachment 211354

That ^ CX500 custom 1982 seat is on ebay for about $100 shipped. Thought maybe the ruler could give you an idea of it that seat there might be an option.

The GL1100 seat pan does like nearly identical to the CX500, but it's rear bracket is slightly different but looks easily compatible or modifiable.


GL:

View attachment 211355

CX500c:

View attachment 211357
I have the King/Queen bucket seat on my '81 CX500 Custom, and while the wife likes it, the seat puts my knees onto the cylinder heads. It's just not comfortable for me.

If someone gave me the money I have in that bike, I'd send it down the road just that fast.
It doesn't have the legs, or power of my other bikes, so it just sits.
 

·
Registered
CX650 motor project into a CX500 Turbo Frame - ongoing
Joined
·
205 Posts
I have the King/Queen bucket seat on my '81 CX500 Custom, and while the wife likes it, the seat puts my knees onto the cylinder heads. It's just not comfortable for me.
I sorta figured those seats would do that. Good excuse to cafe race it out though
 

·
Registered
1982 CX500C
Joined
·
82 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
So I happened to have time today to take the seat to an upholstery shop that works primarily on recreational/hobby type vehicles (cycles, ATV’s, boats, etc) so they are well-experienced with motorcycle seats.

Their plan is to strip it down to the pan, build up and mold new foam, then cover it with vinyl. They quoted me $400 for the work which is hard to accept, but I also don’t have any personal point of reference for what a job like this should cost. I have no problems paying for good work and at least I know the seat will still bolt on and be shaped the way I want.

Not sure yet if I’ll do it.

I sorta figured those seats would do that. Good excuse to cafe race it out though
Are cafe racer seats an option for my 82? I found some on Amazon for < $100 but even using the vehicle filter, I’m not sure if there’s a match - they all look like they’ll be too skinny or possibly match the back/wider end and then be overhanging on the front.
 

·
Registered
CX650 motor project into a CX500 Turbo Frame - ongoing
Joined
·
205 Posts
Are cafe racer seats an option for my 82? I found some on Amazon for < $100 but even using the vehicle filter, I’m not sure if there’s a match - they all look like they’ll be too skinny or possibly match the back/wider end and then be overhanging on the front.

Oh no, that was a a joke aimed at Tumbleweed's bike because it just sits unused. As he has other rides, I was inferring he ought to just make a custom ride out of it.

I would definitely not recommend a cafe seat as there's usually little comfort afforded; they're usually quite thin and most you see for sale online are meant for frame cutting custom builds.

$400 seems quite steep for such a basic job, but a mustang seat for a modern bike will run you north of $600 so for a custom made seat maybe it's not terrible. I would expect more than just plain vinyl for that price. Some nice stitching or something.

I would maybe ask them about test fitting your butt to it before they finalize the fabric part? In case the foam shape isn't right for you. Although I'm not sure if that's an appropriate thing to ask, I've never had a custom seat made.
 
1 - 20 of 34 Posts
Top