Mac's fits, builds and repairs motorcycle seats. We also manufacture custom seats, motorcycle seat foam and motorcycle seat covers to your specifications. Cafe to cruiser, sport bike to dirt, touring to classic, we do it all. You send us your seat pan, we build the best custom motorcycle seats, seat foam and custom gel pads!
"Just received the seat! Beautiful work! Very happy. Nice to see quality workmanship!" — Michael in Stockton, California
"My Suzuki TU250X seat looks great, but more importantly, feels great. The added inch in height & firmness really makes a difference. Many thanks again!" — Mike in Skagway, Alaska
My Harley-Davidson Aermacchi Seat "looks great. Just like the one in the museum!" — Ron in Lynchburg, Virginia
"You did a very nice job on my 1963 Honda Trail 55 seat. Looks great to me. Very good." — Walter in New Berlin, Wisconsin
"The seat is great, holding up well under the strain of my throw-over saddle bags and strapped on pack. Even comfortable when I’m sitting on the bag straps." — Eric in Boise, Idaho
Every street bike, chopper, sport bike, dirt bike, Harley, enduro, streetfighter and scrambler has its own distinctive look and feel. One thing they have in common: the original seat rarely fits the rider. They rarely fit, because OEM motorcycle seats are never manufactured for you. They're made to fit an "average" body. The solution? A custom-fitted seat and high performance motorcycle cover from Mac's Upholstery.
Motorcycle Seat Recovering
We sculpt motorcycle seat foam to fit individual riders. We lower, raise, narrow or widen seats so everything feels just right. We fabricate and install special polymer gel seat pads to maximize your comfort.
In addition to motorcycle upholstery, we also custom-fit seats and gel pads for ATVs, scooters, trikes, bicycles, race cars, riding mowers, trucks, cars, snowmobiles, helm seats, go-karts, wheelchairs, fork lifts, furniture, equestrians, mattresses, and seats for sporting events.
Motorcycle Seat Gel Pads
Some riders expect miracles from off-the-shelf comfort pads. In our opinion, these one-size-fits-all gel pads for motorcycles are a waste of money. They're not designed for your body or your bike. They may slightly improve your ride, but they're not reliable.
Cushion bladders, for example, often contain water-based liquid gels that can harden as the temperature drops. They can also leak if the bladder is punctured.
A Better Gel Pad For A Better Ride
Our custom-fit gel seat pads & cushions are different. They're fabricated from sheets of a special polymer created for the medical field. This ultra-soft, shock absorbing material was invented more than 30 years ago to prevent pressure sores in patients confined to a bed or wheelchair.
The generic name for this material is visco-elastic. Visco-elastic gel is a solid gel with superior body-conforming properties. Because it's solid, visco-elastic gel doesn't leak, melt or freeze in normal temperatures.
A Mac's gel pad fabricated from this material makes your ride smoother by decreasing pressure points and increasing blood flow throughout your hips, butt and legs. It's stable and cool — far better than off-the-shelf silicone pads, which can generate and hold heat during the summer.
Our Custom Gel Pads Stay In Place
Our pads are better for another important reason. The ones you buy online are engineered to strap over the seat. These "add on gels" distort the shape of your seat. They can also slip out of position during a ride. Our gel pads are cut to fit the contours of your seat, then embeded inside the foam padding. They're anchored in place because they're actually built into the seat padding.
Compare Our Custom Gel Pads with Other Pads
Our custom-fit high performance motorcycle gel pads may cost more than a standard comfort pad, but halfway into your Sunday ride you'll kick yourself for not spending a little bit more on quality workmanship. Drop by our showroom and feel the difference!
Ask most people about the tiny town of Sturgis in the Black Hills of South Dakota and they'll draw a blank. Ask a biker about Sturgis and you'll get the opposite reaction.
The annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally draws half a million motorcycle enthusiasts every summer. To some it's a wild week-long event, complete with parties, concerts and races. To others it's road trip pilgrimage to the biggest biker event in the world. Above all, Sturgis is a chance to show off and check-out customized bikes.
You're sure to find some of our seat covers at the big event. Next time you go to Sturgis, enjoy the ride and get noticed; ride on a personalized seat from the craftsmen at Mac's Upholstery.
Due to the large number of requests we recieve it's important to
Read This Section Before Requesting a Quote
Please include a description of your project & pictures in one email. Do not send more than one email. One email only.
When requesting a quote please attach photos of your motorcycle seat. The photos should show the entire seat from a couple of angles. Make sure your photos aren't too large (less than 900 pixels).
If you want the seat foam altered, be specific. For example, if you want the seat raised, don't ask us to raise it 'a little bit'. That doesn't tell us what we need to know. Tell us how many inches you want it raised. Be precise.
If you want your seat lowered, make sure it can actually be done. You can determine this by inspecting your seat pan. Remove the seat pan and flip it over. You should be able to judge the depth of your seat foam this way. If there's only one inch of seat foam we can't lower your seat by two inches. Make sure there's enough foam in your seat to do what you want. This image (right) shows estimated foam depth in inches of ¾, ¾, 1, ½. It's just an example; you don't need to remove the seat cover to estimate foam depth. Just flip over the seat pan. You should be able to guess.
The vast majority of our motorcycle seats are covered in marine grade vinyl. This vinyl is available in a range of colors & textures, it's easy to care for, and it can handle the weather. If you want leather instead of vinyl, keep in mind it will cost more.
Leather will roughly double the cost of any seat cover. For example, if a vinyl seat costs $350, a leather seat will cost $650 to $700.
Leather requires more cleaning and conditioning than vinyl.
Black leather is readily available. Colored leather costs more & requires a longer lead time.
If you want a seat covered in something other than black, please include a color swatch. One of our customers came up with a great idea; go to a paint store or Home Depot, find the color you want on their paint chart, then include a swatch of that color when you ship the seat.
Include as much info as possible in your initial quote request. That way we'll get back to you faster with a more accurate estimate. Here's an example of a good quote request: "I have a 2007 Whiz-Bang 900. I want to lower the driver's section by one inch and install a gel pad there. I want black carbon fiber on top and smooth black vinyl on the sides with a red welt (piping). I'm attaching a sketch of what I want."
We DO NOT silk screen logos.
We customize seat foam and make custom seat covers. We also install seat covers supplied by customers. We DO NOT sell seat covers or seat foam separately.
We DO NOT do embroidery. If you want something like a red Honda Wing stitched on your seat cover we would out-source that. It would increase the cost of your project, especially if the design is intricate with lots of colors.
If you're out of town, ship your seat to: Mac's Upholstery 5015 15th Avenue NW Seattle 98107. Steve is your contact person. This is Steve's email.
Are You On A Budget?
Do you need a new seat cover for your old bike, but can't go the custom-made route? We can help. A number of companies build aftermarket seat covers (and foam inserts) that may fit your budget. Let us install it for you. We have all the right tools and experience to insure that your seat looks the best it can. Here are some things to keep in mind:
If you're unsure about the seat manufacturer, reach out to the appropriate online forum (dirt, cruiser, etc.) and check what other riders are saying. If you can't find anything, post a question.
Our rates are hourly, so save yourself a few dollars by doing some of the work yourself. For example, remove the old cover and staples before bringing it in. Clean the seat pan, too. Be sure to save everything in case we need it.
Make sure you order the correct size. We're sometimes asked to install a cover that doesn't fit. Fixing that sort of problem may cost you more than the seat cover itself.
If you buy a seat cover online then install it incorrectly you'll kick yourself. It's worth spending a few extra dollars to get it done right the first time.
Honda Trail 55
The Trail 55 was one of Honda's original off-road bikes. Built between 1962 and 1964, they were a cross between a scooter and an off-road bike. The small motorcycles featured an automatic clutch, a four stroke engine, and 17 inch wheels with knobby tires.
According to Wikipedia, this family of bikes had "either three or four speed transmissions, plus a second choice of HIGH or LOW bands to apply the same gears to road travel or slower off-road travel. The early bikes achieved this by having two drive sprockets at the rear wheel, which required the rider to dismount and thread the chain onto the desired sprocket. Later bikes placed the two-stage choice within the gearbox, and required the rider to only move a lever."
With all of that engineering, they could handle almost any track. Updated versions of the bike were called "Posties" in Australia due to their long association with the Australia Post.
Original Trail 55 Seat Pan
Original Trail 55 Seat
Reconditioned Trail 55 Seat Pan
Recovered Trail 55 Seat
One of our Wisconsin customers got his hands on a working Trail 55. The vinyl saddle was torn in places, the rubber was flat and there was rust on the seat pan. It was time for a major overhaul.
We began by refurbishing the seat pan. We scoured off the rust, primed and repainted the surface, then revitalizeed the OEM rubber. We also cleaned and polished the chrome.
The seat foam was shot, so we tossed the old stuff and replaced it with state-of-the-art polyurethane foam. The foam work restored the original feel, but the owner wanted something softer. With a seat this thick there's plenty of room for gel, so we recommended a custom gel pad. That did the trick. The seat turned out softer than before, but identical to the original.
Custom Harley-Davidson Aermacchi Seat
The 1970 Aermacchi 125 Rapido HD Enduro wasn't exactly a burner. The small, two stroke bike topped out at about 55 mph. It's not the sort of motorcycle that pops to mind when you think of Harley-Davidson, but for a short time in the Sixities and Seventies the company slapped its nameplate on 50cc and 125cc Italian Aermacchis to counter the influx of small, entry level Japanese motorcycles flooding the US market.
The seat frame arrived stripped and painted. With the prep work done, we went to work on the cover.
Seat Cover for 1970 Aermacchi 125 Rapido HD Enduro
Seat Cover for 1970 Aermacchi 125 Rapido HD Enduro
Aermacchi built different style seats for different years. Research revealed that the 1970 125 Enduro featured five medium width fore to aft pleats. We matched the original look perfectly.
Padding the seat turned out to be a little more challenging. Unlike most motorcycle seats, Aermacchi seats are cushioned with springs not foam. The owner didn't like the stiff ride. Under normal circumstances we'd simply add a layer of polyurethane foam and maybe a custom gel pad. Unfortunately, we couldn't do that on this seat without dramatically altering its shape. The compromise solution: cover the springs with half an inch of medium density foam. The thin foam improved the ride without sacrificing the vintage look.
Custom Café Racer Seat
One of our customers built this fiberglass seat pan for a vintage Honda café racer. Normally, when somebody brings in a DIY seat pan we cringe. Even if they get the dimensions right, something else is usually off. The alignment is wrong or a bracket is missing or the surface is too rough; it's always something.
We can usually repair their mistakes and build what the customer wants, but that takes extra time and money. Here's an example of somebody who knew what they were doing.
Homemade Seat Pan
Motorcycle Seat Padding
The fiberglass seat pan he built is just about perfect (first two pics). Not only are the dimensions and hardware on point, the edges and surface are smooth as a baby's butt. A smooth surface is important for a couple of reasons. If a seat pan is bumpy or twisted, the padding won't be level. If the edges are rough, the vinyl may chafe and the edge band won't look right. This is especially important for seats with thin cushion foam, like café racers.
This seat pan was flawless, so we went right to work on the cushion and cover.
New Cafe Racer Seat
Humpback Style Café Racer Seat
Café racers are usually designed for a single rider. Some vintage café racer seats are even equipped with a fiberglass "humpback" to discourage passengers. This bike owner wanted the best of both worlds; he wanted his custom seat to accommodate a passenger without sacrificing the humpback look. Since a traditional shell was out of the question, we built the humpback out of foam. That way a passenger can hop on the seat every once in a while without cracking his tailbone.
We completed the project with two types of vinyl and stylish horizontal pleats. The customer loved it. He snapped this pic after finishing the bike and installing the new seat.
When Wolverines Attack
We can't prove that this 1979 Harley-Davidson FXE seat was shredded by a vicious wolverine. Something definitely ripped it to pieces, and the teeth marks match a forty pound wolverine. They also match a goofy Golden Retriever puppy, but "vicious wolverine" sounds better, so we're going with that.
The owner wanted a new cover and a custom gel pad. Before doing any of that, we had to fix the wolverine damage.
Damaged Harley-Davidson FXE Seat
Wolverine Fangs Match Foam Damage
Repaired Seat Foam
Proper foam repair not only requires the right tools and materials, you need to know what you're doing. For one thing, you have to match the characteristics of the original seat foam with the replacement foam. Then you have to trim and replace the damaged sections without compromising comfort or support. It's tricky to cut, shape and seamlessly glue all the pieces together so they stay in place. As you can see in the above pic, this foam repair was flawless.
New Cover With Custom Gel Pad
Harley-Davidson Seat Repair
With the wolverine damage repaired we went to work on the new cover. The owner wanted a cover that looked like the original, so we suggested something with pleats and two styles of durable, marine grade black vinyl.
The repairs and improvements were perfect. Unfortunately, it'll never be wolverine proof.
Double Stitched Cover & Custom Gel
Decorative stitching is a great way to dress up a motorcycle seat cover. You don't have to go crazy with fancy embroidery and gaudy colors. Sometimes less is more.
Here's a saddle we customized for a 2004 Suzuki VS1400 Intruder. The owner selected a stylish double diamond stitch to embellish the seat. Before fabricating the vinyl cover we rebuilt the padding and installed a custom gel pad.
The gel pad is built into the seat so it doesn't "print". You'd never know the seat was gelled unless you sat on it.
Supermoto Custom Seat
Supermoto conversions were big in the early eighties. The modifiction procedure went something like this: take a dirt bike or enduro, add 17 inch wheels, flip the front forks and beef up the brakes. Make a few more adjustments and presto chango, you'd get a nimble, light weight, street legal bike designed to handle just about anything, including off road bumps and jumps.
These versatile bikes fell out of favor roughly 30 years ago when ABC Sports stopped promoting supermoto races. Now they're making a comeback. While factory-built supermotos are available, lots of bikers prefer doing their own conversions. This is one of those do-it-yourself models. The owner wanted a perfect custom seat, so he came to us.
Custom Supermoto Bike
Stiff Rebond Padding
New Custom Padded Seat & Cover
New Custom Seat (rear view)
The bike owner wanted a functional design with a little pazzazz.
Stiff rebond foam is ideal for a demanding supermoto seat like this. After shaping the foam, we recommended two charcoal vinyls with the same hue; a textured vinyl for the saddle face, a slightly tacky vinyl for the sides. The result is a medium stiff seat with a little bite to hold the rider in place.
When building a seat from scratch it's tempting to tuck a gel pad inside to enhance comfort. Custom gel is a must for cruisers or street bikers stuck in one position for endless miles. Supermotos are a horse of a different color. You're not gonna be sitting in one position riding one of these; gel pads are strictly optional.
BMW Bobber Seat
Half the fun of owning a chopper or bobber is building it yourself. Stripping and customizing a factory motorcycle to your specifications gets you exactly what you want. That's if you can pull it off. There's no shame in not having all the necessary skills; that's where we come in.
Here's a two-up BWM seat the owner tried to modify into a single. He did a pretty good job roughing-out the shape, but about halfway through the project he ran into some problems. No surprise there. Cutting, layering and fitting seat foam the right way is a lot harder than it looks.
Bobber Seat (Before)
Bobber Seat (After)
Polyurethane foam comes in different densities and standards. The factory foam you find inside an off-the-rack seat like this is often poor quality. You can't always cut and repurpose substandard foam. Fortunately, we were able to keep costs down by pairing some of the existing factory foam with the stuff we use to rebuild the seat. With the seat properly engineered, we added the cover.
As you can see in the before and after pics, the rebuilt solo not only looks brand new, you'd never know it was originally a two-up.
Vintage British Bikes Seats
A customer in Michigan recently purchased a pair of vintage gems: a 1971 Dunstall equipped Norton Commando and a 1967 American Eagle Sprite. The Dunstall Norton is especially prized by British motorcycle collectors. Its speed and performance dominated the UK racing scene during the late sixties. Actor Steve McQueen and musician Keith Emerson, of the rock band Emerson Lake & Palmer, were among the celebrities who purchased Dunstalls during their heyday.
1971 Dunstall Norton Commando
1967 American Eagle Sprite
When bikes are this old, the first thing to go bad is usually seat upholstery. As expected, both of these collector bikes needed a new cover and a seat rebuild.
Original Dunstall Norton Seat
Rebuilt Dunstall Norton Seat
The seat from the Norton Commando Dunstall (above left) appeared to be original, so it provided us with a perfect template. We tuned-up the seat pan, rebuilt the foam, then copied the vinyl pattern from the original down to the precise number of horizontal ribs.
Today's high performance vinyls are a lot better than the junk they were using back in 1971. As you can see, the rebuilt seat looks the same as the original, but with much better foam and vinyl.
American Eagle Seat Repair
Recovered 1967 Motorcycle Seat
Reupholstered American Eagle Sprite Seat
The 1967 American Eagle Sprite was an off-road dynamo designed for trials, scrambles and motocross. Despite its name and the "American Eagle" logo cast into its engine case, the American Eagle Sprite was never manufactured in the United States. The bike was a private-label motorcycle built at Sprite Developments near Birmingham, England.
Instead of reproducing the original seat, the customer wanted something a little more styish. After rebuilding the padding, we designed and fabricated a seat cover with snappy horizontal pleats and a contrasting accent welt. It's not authentic, but it's a definite upgrade from the plain looking original seat cover.
Reshape Yamaha XSR700 Seat With Gel Pad
Yamaha unleashed the snazzy, midsize XSR700 back in 2018. The company's Faster Sons philosophy guided this retro-modern bike's development and release. The Faster Sons method merges today's technology with yesterday's classic looks. The result is a high performance bike with retro styling, such as exposed aluminum pieces, retro-influenced bodywork, custom instrumentation and a stepped seat.
The owner of a brand new XSR700 wasn't crazy about the stepped seat, so he called us.
Original XSR700 Seat
Rebuilt XSR700 Seat
Soft, Durable Vinyl
Original Yamaha XSR700
Graphic Diagram of New Seat
Instead of the standard stepped seat, he wanted something streamlined with a narrow, flatter profile. With that in mind, we stripped the seat, then redesigned and rebuilt it to the owners specifications.
When you're rebuilding a seat, you might as well go all in by installing a custom gel pad. Our gel pads are much better than something you'd find online or in a bike store. In addition to being custom-fitted, we use a higher quality gel than the stuff you can buy in a store. You'd be surprised how much difference a properly designed gel pad can make.
After rebuilding the seat foam and adding a custom gel pad we crafted a one-of-a-kind seat cover to go with it. The owner selected a vinyl that looks and feels like leather. Nice choice. And check out the perfect stitching!
Harley-Davidson Aermacchi M50 Seat Repair
Japanese motorcycles flooded the US market back in the 1960s. Harley Davidson and other domestic manufacturers were caught off guard by the popularity of the small, affordable bikes. Harley responded by introducing its own line of small motorcycles, sort of.
Instead of engineering brand new bikes, it purchased half of Aermacchi's motorcycle division. Then it slapped its Harley nameplate on some of the smaller Italian-made bikes and called it good. The M50 was built for a couple of years in the mid-sixties. A restored Harley-Davidson Aermacchi M50 can fetch more than 15K.
Harley-Davidson Aermacchi M50
Damaged Aermacchi Seat
Rusted Seat Bottom
Damaged Aermacchi Seat Cover
Old Foam & Cover
Damaged Aermacchi Seat Cover
Reupholstered Aermacchi Seat
Aermacchi Seat Restored
This is one of those vintage bikes (top left). The owner wanted the seat rebuilt as part of a restoration project, so he called us.
The 50 year old seat had to be stripped to the frame then rebuilt from scratch. After cleaning off the badly corroded suspension, we repaired and repainted the seat frame. Then we shaped and installed brand new seat foam.
We covered the rebuilt seat foam with marine grade vinyl. For authenticity purposes, we found a vinyl that matched the original color and texture. Since today's foams and vinyls are a lot more durable than the original stuff, this seat will last longer and perform much better. Maintaining the original look will also enhance the bike's resale value.
Adjust Harley Heritage Backrest Pad
The Harley Heritage Classic Softail® has a retro look, but there's nothing nostalgic about its ride. It boasts a state-of-the-art Milwaukee Eight Big Twin engine with plenty of rumble to spare. The stiff frame and minimal rear suspension delivers a responsive ride.
Like all production bikes, the Softail® seat is designed for an average person's body. Since most people are not average, seats usually need a tweak or two to fit right. In this instance, the owner needed the backrest pad adjusted.
Add Padding to Backrest
Design Matches Original
The owner insisted on keeping the original retro look, so wrapping a few inches of extra padding in generic vinyl wasn't going to cut it. Instead, we removed and rebuilt the backrest with a slightly larger pad, then designed and fabricated a cover that matched the original. The rebuilt backrest not only fits like a glove, it's a dead ringer for the original. Best of all, the additional padding turned a smooth ride into near perfection.
This is a great example of a little change that makes a big difference. If your ride doesn't feel right, give us a call. A couple of simple changes could make all the difference.
Suede Leather for a Café Racer
The café racer is a stripped-down lightweight bike optimized for speed and handling. It was designed in post WWII England for quick trips over a short distance.
Café racer seats are not built for comfort, but there's no reason they can't look great.
Café Racer Seat Cover
The owner wanted this one covered in brown suede leather with classic cross stitching. Suede leather is not the sort of fabric you'd use on an every day bike in Seattle. Rain can destroy suede in no time. Since this seat will go on a show bike in a state where the sun actually shines from time to time, it should be fine.
Custom Seat for Honda Valkyrie
The Valkyrie (GL1500C) was manufactured by Honda from 1996 to 2003. It was a cruiser bike built with a modified Gold Wing engine. The improved engine increased power and tork, making the Valkyrie more responsive that many cruisers.
The Valkyrie is a distinctive looking bike. This one-of-a-kind custom seat makes it even more stylish.
Premium Pebbled Vinyl
Intergrated Gel Pad
Gary, the bike's owner, selected two premium vinyls for his custom seat cover — black and pebbled ochre. It's sort of hard to tell online, but the ochre vinyl looks and feels a lot like basketball leather. Before embossing the pebbled vinyl with an original design, we installed a custom gel pad inside the rider's seat foam. For the final touch, we added brass studs and a golden bronze welt.
New Seating Installed on Valkyrie
Here's a pic Gary sent us with the new seating installed. BTW, Gary lives in Michigan. If you ride in the midwest don't be surprised if a Valkyrie with a one-of-a-kind seat catches your eye.
Rebuild Softail Seat
The first Harley Davidson Softail® was manufactured more than 30 years ago. These bikes feature a hidden rear suspension designed to absorb bumps and smooth a passenger's ride. Because the rear suspension is hidden, a softail looks like a standard rigid frame Harley.
Softail® seats are designed to accomodate a passenger. This one has a slightly raised P Pad (first row left). The original seat was adequate, but the owner wanted something more reminiscent of a one piece king and queen seat.
Original Seat & P Pad
Ready for Testing
King & Queen Style Rebuild
We do this sort of modification all the time, but since every rider's body is different it's important for each rider to test the seat modifications for up to a week before we fabricate the new cover. If the rider doesn't like the fit, we make addition modifications. If the fit is good we go to work on the cover.
As you can see from the bottom two pics, we reshaped, raised and fused the original P pad to the rider's saddle so it's more like a king and queen. The cover was made from durable, marine grade vinyl. Notice the flawless craftsmanship.
Back From Oblivion
Way back in 1965, Honda found itself in a pickle. The company was launching a brand new five speed 450, but still had a warehouse full of older four speed models. Instead of slashing prices to stimulate sales, they tweaked the bikes to capitalize on the street scrambler fad sweeping the nation.
The old 450s became Honda CB450Ds, complete with high pipes, a special tank, seat and side covers. Since very few CB450Ds were manufactured, the old bikes are popular with collectors.
1965 Honda CB450D
Original CB450D Seat Cover
Rebuilt CB450D Seat Cover
Rebuilt CB450D Seat Cover
Rebuilt CB450D Seat Cover
Rebuilt CB450D Seat Cover
These bikes are half a century old. If a collector is lucky enough to stumble upon one, it's going to need a lot more than new plugs and an oil change. In this instance, the entire seat was trashed. The owner wanted us to build one that looked just like the original. All we had to go on was the seat pan and what was left of the original cover (top right).
As you can see, it turned out great. We were able to match the materials and textures including the stylish gold welt. It's a dead ringer for the original.
Honda CM400T Seat Rebuild
The Honda CM400 series was manufactured from 1979 to 1982. These bikes were no frills cafe racers; throwbacks to the flat-seat bikes of the 60s and 70s. They eventually morphed into the popular Honda Rebel.
One of our out-of-state customers purchased a CM400T with a standard two tier seat. He wanted the seat reshaped to his specifications.
Schematic & Rebuilt Seat
Schematic & Rebuilt Seat
If you live in another part of the country, it's important to be specific when describing how you want your seat rebuilt. Having detailed instructions saves us time. When we save time, you save money. Fortunately, the bike owner included detailed instructions and schematics when he shipped us the CM400T seat.
After trimming and reshaping the foam to the owner's specifications, we wrapped the seat with the finest marine grade vinyl. Then we added a stylish diamond stitch pattern on the seat face. As you can see, the rebuilt seat is a lot nicer than the original. More importantly, the bike owner got exactly what he wanted.
Harley-Davidson Tribute Bike
Harley-Davidson manufactured motorcycles for the US Army in World War I and World War II.
During the Second World War, the company modified its popular civilian model WL into the combat version known as the WLA Liberator *. These quarter ton bikes were powered by Harley-Davidson's legendary 45 CI flat-head motor. They were quick, easy to work on and durable.
The company built 90,000 for the army. They were almost never used in combat, so were rarely equipped with sidecars as was common on the German side.
This modern bike is obviously not a WLA, but as a tribute to the WWII model it's painted to look like one.
Seats on the original WLAs were stiff and uncomfortable, a far cry from the motorcycle seats of today. The bike owner didn't want to sacrifice comfort, but he wanted a seat that looked more like the original.
We began by stripping the original seat cover (upper left) then reshaping the foam base. Using different density foams we widened the base and raised the seat a couple of inches to better fit the rider. Next we shaped, trimmed and installed a custom gel pad. Our gel pads, manufactured from medical grade padding, are far better than anything you can buy over-the-counter.
With the seat reshaped to the customer's specifications, we designed a seat cover reminiscent of the original.
* The WLA stood for (W) model group (L) high compression (A) army. It got the nickname "Liberator", because it was ridden by soldiers liberating occupied Europe.
Bikers tend to be independent types. Rather than pay a shop to customize their ride, many roll up their sleeves and do themselves. Some do excellent work. Others end up in FUBAR hell.
Here's a Harley-Davidson seat somebody carved-up to accommodate a gel pad. As you can see, the workmanship is pretty crude. For one thing, the side foam isn't sturdy enough to properly support the gel pad. Even worse, they used the wrong type of gel. Better call Mac's!
DIY Cavity For Gel Pad
DIY Gel Pad
New Seat Cover
Custom Gel Pad Installed
The bike was only a few years old, but the chiseled-out foam was so badly compromised we had to rebuild most of the seat. The rebuild included a cavity for a new gel pad.
There are plenty of gel pad products available both online and in bike shops. Our gel is the best; its approved for medical use, which means it's super soft and resilient. After custom fitting the gel pad, we fabricated a brand new seat cover matching the color scheme on the bike. The new seat not only looks great, it's soft enough to ride all day.
Send Detailed Instructions
Our shop is in Seattle, but we customize motorcycle seats for bikers across the nation. If a biker lives in another state and wants very specific modifications, we recommend written instructions and/or sketches be shipped along with the seat. This 1982 Kawasaki seat was sent from a customer in Maine. In addition to detailed written instructions, he included pictures, color swatches and templates.
Color Swatches & Photos
Rebuilt Kawasaki Seat
Rebuilt Motorcycle Seat
Rebuilt KZ750 h3 LTD Seat
There were templates for the seat contour, foam configuration, side accents, top accents, and pleats. He also sent descriptions of the materials and stitching patterns along with photos of the original seat.
Because this customer wanted very specific patterns and colors, it took a little longer to finish the job. But, the extra care he took describing the project paid off. He got the seat he wanted.
Rebuild Duct Tape Seat
Patching a motorcycle seat with duct tape is pretty common, but check out the seat a customer dropped off the other day. This isn't a duct tape patch. This is a duct tape seat cover! The whole thing is double-wrapped in the stuff. What do you think — maybe it's time for a new seat cover?
Seat Covered With Duct Tape
What A Mess
Marine Quality Vinyl
After stripping the tape and tossing the old foam, the only thing left was the baseplate. The bike owner wanted a simple ribbed cover with a low profile, sort of like the old one. Using a couple different styles of foam -- one dense, one soft -- we carved and smoothed a brand new seat pad similar to the one before. Instead of going with a new color or something exotic, the owner decided to keep it the same. So, we crafted the custom seat cover from the finest marine grade black vinyl.
Check out the before and after pics above. Hard to believe they're the same seat!
Rebuild Yamaha RD350 Seat
Most motorcycle aficionados consider the Yamaha RD350 one of the great bikes of the 1970s. It's an air cooled two stroke cafe racer capable of leaving more powerful bikes in the dust; perfect for zipping around town.
Yamaha manufactured the RD350 from 1973 to 1975. Since all these bikes are more than forty years old, seat repair/rebuild is pretty common. One owner took the unusual step of roughing-out the shape he wanted using home insulation foam.
Yamaha RD350 Rebuilt Seat
Yamaha RD350 Rebuilt Seat
Rebuilt Seat Mounted on Yamaha RD350
Rebuilt Seat Mounted on Yamaha RD350
The seat pan was in good shape, so we left it alone. Using the customer's foam template, we rebuilt the foam and crafted a new seat cover using the finest marine grade black vinyl. As you can see, the white welting complements the trim.
If this had been a touring bike we would've recommended a custom gel pad insert to smooth the ride. Since the RD350 is designed for quick trips around town, a gel pad wasn't necessary. The rebuild was perfect; the seat fit like a glove.
Customize Suzuki Seat
Why wait until your seat is old and tattered before having it shaped to fit your frame?
Before hitting the road, the owner of a brand new Suzuki TU250X called us to custom shape his seat so the ride was perfect from day one. You can see what the original seat looked like in the first two pics below.
The owner wanted something stylish with a little more beef.
Before Custom Shaping
After Custom Shaping
We began by removing the old seat cover and adding a layer of rebond foam. Rebond is firmer than standard polyurethane foam. Using this sort of material accomplished two objectives; it raised the seat by an inch and gave it a slightly stiffer feel. Because he lives in Alaska, he requested we use a superior quality marine vinyl engineered to remain supple in extremely cold temperatures. We fabricated the seat cover from the highest quality vinyl; the same stuff we use for the Alaska fishing fleet.
Finally, the owner wondered if white diamond stitching might be a nice tough. As a matter of fact, yes!
Repair Cracked Seat Pan
When cracks appear on both sides of an old motorcycle seat pan you figure it's time to shop for a new seat. In most cases you'd be right. But, if you're determined to keep the bike original or if it's hard to hunt down a replacement seat, give us a call.
Rusted Seat Pan
Cracked Seat Pan
Both Sides Cracked
Fixing this seat pan was a little more involved than a typical restoration. In this instance, we had to remove all the nasty polyurethane residue, hammer the bent metal edges back into shape, then prep the surface for welding.
After welding the cracks, we treated the rust, covered the seat pan with a fresh coat of paint and cut new seat foam. Finally, we installed a standard replacement cover with new straps and chrome. Good as new.
Repair Honda XL Motorcycle Seat
Honda manufactured the XL dual-sport series from 1972 through the 80s. If you're above a certain age, you know this bike as a four-stroke enduro. Since the last one was built when Ronald Reagan was President you'd be hard-pressed to find an original XL seat in good condition. A lot of them look like the first row of pics below.
Damaged Honda XL Seat
Torn Honda Seat Cover
Seat Foam Damage
Honda XL Seat Cover After Repair
New Vinyl Seat Cover
Seat Padding Added
Unless the seat pan is rusted or cracked this sort of restoration is pretty straightforward. Whenever possible we try to salvage the old foam. In this instance, the polyurethane foam was too far gone. We replaced the foam, then built a new seat cover; good as new.
Motorcycle Seats Sold Online
Buying stuff on the Internet can be an adventure. It's nearly impossible to get a feel for a product when all you have to go on is a snapshot or two.
Here's a great example of something that failed to meet expectations. This mass produced seat and cover looked great online. But, when it arrived there were wrinkles in the vinyl cover (below left). The cover was wrinkled because the seat foam had collapsed.
Wrinkled Seat Cover
Instead of sending back the seat and rolling the dice on a replacement, the bike owner called us.
He wondered if we could cut the seat cover to fit the foam. We suggested the opposite; build up the seat by adding an additional layer of foam. Actually, it's a little more complicated than that. The old and new foam have to be paired, prepped, glued together, and then reshaped. As you can see (above right), the repaired seat turned out smooth as a baby's butt.
Damaged Foam & Wrong Cover
The craftsmen at Mac's Upholstery specialize in custom motorcycle seats and gel pads, but every now and then a biker drops by with a simpler request. They want us to install a stock cover on their old seat. We're happy to do that, but there are a couple of things to keep in mind before calling.
Damaged Seat Foam
Wrong Size Seat Cover
First, if your seat cover is worn or damaged the foam inside may be shot. Some manufacturers cut corners by using cheap seat foam. You don't want to put a brand new cover on damaged foam. If you need a new cover, you may need new foam.
Also, be careful if you purchase a new seat cover online. A customer recently bought one on the web. He got the cover he ordered (above right), but it was the wrong size. The cover he purchased didn't fit, so we couldn't use it. If he'd ordered from us, that wouldn't have happened.
The Finest Craftsmanship
When it comes to motorcycle seats, our reputation precedes us — in a good way.
Bike owners from as far away as the other Washington -- Washington DC -- send us seats for foam repair, shaping, upholstery work and custom gel pads. Just recently, a biker from Glendale, California sent us a badly damaged motorcycle seat from a Honda Scrambler 305 with instructions and schematics. This was a restoration project; he wanted the seat to look just like it did in the showroom back in the 1960s.
Honda Scrambler 305
Honda Scrambler 305
As you can see from the pre-restoration pic below, there wasn't much left of the original motorcycle seat. Instead of a gel pad to soften the ride, somebody way back when had strapped chunks of blue foam under the old cover. Holes from the diamond tufting had turned the seat foam into Swiss cheese. In short, the old seat was trashed.
Seat Before Restoration
Honda Seat After Restoration
We began the restoration by stripping the seat. As you might expect on a bike this old, we discovered lots of rust on the seat pan. After treating the rust and repainting the seat pan, we cut brand new foam and installed a state-of-the-art custom gel pad. We used durable, marine-grade vinyl for the new seat cover. Finally, we dressed-up the seat with precision diamond stitching, a matching welt and a passenger grab strap.
When it went back to California the restored Scrambler seat was even better than the original. You don't have to live in Seattle to get the best motorcycle seats. Just drop a dime and pop your seat in the mail. We'll do the rest.
Keep Your Passengers Happy
Harley Davidson's Fat Bob® is a great bike, but there's one problem. Every Bob rolls off the assembly line in Kansas City with a passenger perch the size of a postage stamp. There's even a written guaranteed pinned to every seat — your passenger's butt and legs are guaranteed go numb ten miles into your ride or double your money back.
Okay, the part about the guarantee isn't true, but as you can see in the "before seat rebuild" pic below, the passenger perch is way too small for anything more demanding than a trip to Freddy's.
Harley Davidson Passenger Perch
Redesigned Passenger Perch
Passenger Perch After Rebuild
The solution is simple — rebuild the passenger perch wider and taller.
Seat foam comes in a range of densities. Standard foam isn't sturdy enough to provide the necessary support for this sort of rebuild. In this instance, we need a stiff, higher density foam. Unfortunately, stiff foam is usually too stiff for comfort. To soften the seat we use the higher density stuff for the base, then cover it with a soft, lower density foam. The double layer provides the necessary support without sacrificing comfort.
With the seat rebuilt, this Fat Bob® is ready for the road.
Leather Or Vinyl?
If this 30 year old Harley-Davidson Shovelhead looks brand new, it's because the owner has spent years restoring it. With the mechanical work complete, it was time for a new seat. The question we always ask the bike owner at this point — vinyl or leather?
Before New Seat
Before New Seat
Today's premier vinyls are almost indistinguishable from standard leather. Even so, there's nothing quite like the look and feel of leather. Leather can also be more durable than petroleum-based vinyl, if properly maintained. On the other hand, leather is usually more expensive. And leather can go bad if it gets soaked; you don't want to ride in the rain with a leather seat. Since it does have a tendency to rain in the Pacific Northwest, we usually recommend vinyl.
New Harley Davidson Seat
Leather Motorcycle Seat
Custom Harley Seat
The owner of this vintage bike wanted to go first cabin and cover the seat in leather. In this case, we figured it was okay. This is not an everyday motorcycle; it's the sort of bike you park in the garage and only ride when it's nice outside.
As you can see, the brand new leather seat turned out great. With the seat installed, this Shovelhead is ready for the road.
A Clever Idea
Hunting down a replacement seat for a vintage motorcycle can turn into a wild goose chase. When one of our customers came up empty-handed in his quest for a Honda Twin Star seat, he called us. We offered to fabricate a custom seat from scratch, but the biker had an offbeat idea. Instead of spending hundreds on a brand new steel and fiberglass seat frame, he suggested building the seat on an inexpensive skateboard deck.
We scratched our heads for a few minutes, then gave it a go.
Seat Built From Skateboard
Mounting Plate Holes
After confirming the skateboard fit the motorcycle seat plate, the bike owner yanked the skateboard's wheels and drilled mounting holes in its deck. With the board prepped, we went to work.
The owner preferred a low profile seat, so we kept it simple and minimized the foam depth. We used a durable marine-grade vinyl for the cover. The lateral dorsal pleats are stylish, but they also serve a purpose; a pleated seat cover is 'tackier' than a seat with a plain surface. Finally, we turned the flared end of the old skateboard around to allow plenty of space for the tail light.
Turned out that building a motorcycle seat on a skateboard deck was not as crazy as it sounded.
Vespa Scooter Seat
Most of our seat covers are fabricated for motorcycles and the occasional watercraft, but we do plenty of scooters, especially when the weather turns nice.
Scooters are becoming more and more popular in Seattle; they're convenient, easy to park and inexpensive to operate.
While it's hard to improve upon the classic look of an Italian Vespa, some owners take the opportunity to personalize their Vespa with a custom made seat cover.
Here's a great example of how something as simple and inexpensive as diamond stitching can transform a plain vinyl seat into something stylish and unique.
King & Queen Chopper Seat
When a do-it-youselfer hits a dead end, their project occasionally ends up in our shop. Sometimes the work they've done is so sketchy we have to start from scratch, other times we're able to salvage the project. In this case, a bike owner built the base for a chopper seat, but didn't have the tools or experience to finish it.
Homemade Seat Mold
King & Queen Chopper Seat
As you can see from the first two pics, the homemade fiberglass base is pretty ragged. Before doing anything else, we had to determine if it was worth saving. Fortunately, it was sturdy. And the shape was only a little bit off. It took hours of smoothing and adjusting, but in the end were able to transform this hunk of fiberglass into an acceptable seat frame.
With the base finished, we laid down a layer of rebond foam, tweaked the padding here and there, then went to work on the cover. The bike owner selected a tough, marine grade black vinyl with a matte finish. Classic welting and a traditional tuck & roll finish were perfect for this shape. When finished, you'd never know this king and queen chopper seat began as misshapen fiberglass.
Repair Motorcycle Seat
You're probably gonna think we doctored these snapshots. It's true, we did Photoshop a carpenter’s square over two of them, but only to prove a point. In some places this thing (first two pics) could pass for abstract art, but nobody'd ever mistake it for a superbly crafted motorcycle seat cover. One of our competitors built it. What's worse, they charged the customer for the lousy work.
Motorcycle Seat Or Modern Art?
Out Of Alignment
Our job was to fix the other guy's mistake. The seat face was still in pretty good shape, so we salvaged what we could. Unfortunately, the sides were too badly botched to reuse. Instead of reprising the waffle stitch design, the owner wanted to try something different — wrapping the sides and rear in plain tan leather.
Fitting New Cover
That's More Like It!
As you can see, the seat repair turned out great. But, the bike owner learned an expensive lesson: if you want something done the right way, bring it to Mac's.
Back From The Bone Yard
You'd be hard-pressed to find a more dramatic example of how we're able to transform a trashed seat into something good-as-new. Check out the "before" pics below. This Motobécane scooter seat was a mess. The cover was cracked and stained. The spindly grab strap was torn in two. The foam looked like it was chiseled from a Space Shuttle heat shield. Aside from the frame, we pretty much had to toss everything.
Trashed Motobécane Scooter Seat
Now, check out the bottom two pics. Hard to believe the restored scooter seat could have been salvaged from the remnants of the old seat. New motorcycle seat foam, new vinyl and a brand new grab-strap. Not only good-as-new...better!
Recovering Bicentennial Bike
The Honda CB400F, commonly know as the Honda 400 Four, is a rare bike. It was only built for three years: from 1975 to 1977. The 400 Four has an air-cooled, transverse mounted 408 CC inline four cylinder engine. As you'd expect, it was only a matter of time before a 40 year old bike needed a new seat cover.
Recovered CB400F Seat
Attention To Detail
The owner wanted to maintain the bike's original look, so he purchased a 400 Four seat cover and had Mac's install it. There was some rust on the seat pan, but aside from that, everything was in good shape. Even the foam was still okay!
If you have an old bike, such as a Honda 400 Four, there are plenty of ways to recover the seat; go for an original looking cover, or have the seat redesigned to fit your body.
Turning A Double-Bucket Into A Street Fighter
This large double-bucket seat came to us from the owner of a touring bike. He liked the way it felt, but hated the "La-Z-Boy" look. We suggested turning the double bucket into a street fighter — a complete redesign/rebuild. After modifying the existing pan and motorcycle seat foam we added a custom gel pad and covered the seat with a carbon fiber smooth vinyl cover.
Street Fighter Style
Original Foam With Button Holes
Steamlined Without Button Holes
As you can see, the changes transformed the chunky looking "La-Z-Boy" into lean street fighter. The seat not only looks great, we did it without sacrificing comfort!
Lowering Seat Profiles
Bikers often ask us to lower their seats. Here's an example of why that sort of modification can be difficult at times. Check the side view of this Ducati seat. It looks like you could trim quite a bit, right? Now look at the top view where we've noted foam depth. As you can see, there's only half an inch of foam in places! Hard to trim this one down any further.
Don't Forget Your Passenger
This p-pad was raised two inches using seat foam and a custom-designed gel pad. The seat cover was designed with the original style in mind, so it perfectly matches the driver's solo.
Thanks to these modifications, the passenger rides more comfortably. They also enjoy the scenery and not just the back of the driver's head! We can widen, raise, lower and gel-pad your passenger seat so both of you enjoy the ride.
Motorcycle Seat Repair
It's easy to replace the seat cover for a standard mid-sized street bike, right? Not so much. In fact, even a relatively simple seat, such as this one, needs to be properly shaped and rebuilt before the new cover goes on — especially when the old foam is damaged and compressed.
Foam Separated From Seat Pan
Improperly Trimmed Foam
Done The Right Way!
After a valiant, but unsuccessful home repair, the owner brought his unfinished seat to Mac's. We matched his ideas with our experience to create exactly the seat he wanted. In this case, it required carefully rebuilding and beveling the foam before crafting the seat cover. Even something that seems straightforward, such as motorcycle seat repair, can turn into a big project without the proper tools and know-how.
Custom Seat Pan For Softail
Check out this custom-built seat we fabricated for a modified Harley-Davidson Softail. The marine-grade vinyl looks and feels just like leather; even the faux ostrich skin looks like the real thing. The tough vinyl not only wears well, it resists UV and water damage.
Harley-Davidson Soft Tail
Marine Grade Vinyl
Faux Ostrich Skin
OEM Style Seats
Mac's enjoys a reputation for crafting unique motorcycle seat upholstery and custom fit gel pads – each designed to express an owner's individual personality. On rare occasions, riders prefer to maintain a bike's original look when the seat goes bad. You'd think an original style seat cover would fit perfectly. Unfortunately, that's not always the case. Seat foam collapses, fasteners rust and aftermarket covers sometime miss the mark.
OEM Style Suzuki Seat
Installing this OEM-style Suzuki seat cover was challenging for a couple of reasons. The fit was a little bit off and the underseat fasteners were going bad. After resizing the vinyl, we riveted the cover to the seat pan.
The seat cover was designed for the bike, but without these adjustments it wouldn't have fit properly.
Custom-Made Seat With Intricate Leatherwork
The talented leather craftsmen at Mac's are capable of building just about anything you can imagine. The design for this custom-made motorcycle seat was based on a photograph provided by the customer. The distinctive two-toned leather weave pattern covers a layer of simulated ostrich skin dyed blue.
Finely Crafted Leatherwork
Attention to Detail
Comfort and Beauty
While the simulated ostrich skin is manufactured from vinyl, it feels and wears just like durable saddle leather. With proper care, this handsome motorcycle seat will turn heads for a long time.
Custom BMW Motorcycle Seats
The patriotic owner of a 2000 BMW GS wanted to recover his bike's tattered seat in blue to go with its red and white tank. As he put it, "I want to Americanize my German bike". Done and done.
Torn BMW GS Seat
Original BMW Seat
Before Seat Repair
Before recovering the seat in a sturdy vinyl, it was necessary to trim and replace damaged sections of the old foam. With the seat foam repaired, we recommended a marine-grade vinyl specifically engineered to resist fading and shed water. Stainless steel fasteners provide additional protection against water damage. As you can see, the custom BMW motorcycle seat turned out great. Love the color!
Custom Motorcycle Seat Upholstery
Custom motorcycle seat upholstery from Mac's not only fits your body, it fits your style — you select the cover, stitching and trim. And the sky's the limit! We can make it look any way you want. We carry a wide variety of studs and conchos. Custom embroidery is also available for a truly unique look. Click here to view a slideshow of selected seats.
Our motorcycle seat covers are truly awesome. We stock everything from durable, marine-grade vinyl to leather to exotic materials such as alligator, stingray and ostrich. Many come in wide variety of textures and colors.
Motorcycle Seat Repair & Seat Foam
This set of before & after pictures (below) illustrates our quality craftsmanship. The first two snapshots show a damaged motorcycle seat literally held together with duct tape. It's totally trashed. By the time we're finished repairing it, the seat not only looks brand new, it fits the rider like a glove. Count on Mac's to deliver unsurpassed craftsmanship. We're proud of our work and it shows.
Custom Seats For Jet Skis, ATVs & Snowmobiles
Durable Fabrics & Adjustable Seat Heaters For Snowmobiles, ATVs
Mac's Upholstery repairs, customizes and fabricates one-of-a-kind seats for jet skis, ATVs and snowmobiles. We're also happy to install off-the-shelf seat foam and inexpensive covers for riders not interested in a high performance seat.
In either case, our skilled craftsmen take extra steps to insure a superior installation. The process begins by drying, inspecting and repairing the seat foam. Damaged jet ski and snowmobile seats are often soaking wet when they arrive in our shop. It takes more time, but extracting all the moisture from the foam insures a better fit.
When completely dry, we sculpt the seat -- adding and removing foam as needed -- to fit your body. If you want a seat warmer for your ATV or snowmobile, the heating element is including in the fitting process.
We attach the fabric to the seat frame using evenly spaced, corrosion-resistant stainless steel fasteners. We often caulk the seams with silicon sealant to minimize water intrusion. When complete, your seat will not only look great, it'll fit like a glove.
So if you need jet ski seat upholstery, atv seat upholstery, or you need to repair a jet ski seat, Mac's Is the place to call.
Moto Cross, Naked Bike, Race Bike & Classic Seats
Motorcycle enthusiasts at Mac's visit local motorcycle meets to stay on top of trends and styles.
Here are some snapshots from a recent Backfire gathering in Ballard. Backfire is the perfect place to meet other motorcycle enthusiasts. You'll find ratbikes, cafe racers, vintage bikes, Harleys, scooters, crusiers, hot rod bikes, moto X, standard bikes, adventure bikes, bobbers, baggers and MXRs -- just about everything.
A lot of the bikes feature custom motorcycle seats by Mac's. Check the Backfire Club's website for meet dates. We'd like to see you there!
We custom fit motorcycle seats for motorcycle enthusiasts throughout the nation, including: Bellevue, Kirkland, Issaquah, Redmond, Bainbridge Island, Shoreline, Kenmore, Woodinville, Mill Creek, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood, Renton, Kent, Des Moines, Federal Way, and Tacoma.
Out of state customers please ship to: Mac's Upholstery, 5015 15th Avenue NW, Seattle, WA 98107