Review by James Parchman
[This Spencers’ Motorcycle Seat Mods Review was originally published in the October 2007 issue of Rider magazine]
Meet Frank Turnier, whose military DI bestowed upon him the Spencer moniker. Turnier exhibits a laser-focused tenacity for ferreting out problems in stock motorcycle seats, then gently tweaking them until he is satisfied that the final product provides a superior and more soothing fit to the owner’s derriére.
There are gazillions of custom bike seat builders throughout America, incorporating various materials and designs in pursuit of seat nirvana. Some of these creations work well; many look great, and most cost serious greenbacks because of the time and handwork involved. Spencers’ approach is somewhat different–more a seat chiropractor than plastic surgeon. Turnier believes the stock motorcycle seat provides a satisfactory foundation, and with skillful manipulation and the addition of high-tech innards can become a very rear-friendly roost, while avoiding the expense of a major overhaul.
The tweaking process begins with disassembly of the stock seat and a careful study of the pictures and instructions provided by the customer. Next comes shaping as necessary to get the angles just right, followed by replacement of the original padding with viscoelastic and specialized “memory” foams that provide superior cushioning. The stock cover is reattached and the finished product is ready for shipment. Turnier’s no big fan of the current gel materials used in seating, but is testing some high-quality versions that are proving their worth in medical applications. Other innovations in Spencers’ pipeline are leather covers and heated coils.Turnier modifies every stock seat from Guzzi to Gold Wing, and certain custom- built products. Our test-mule Honda ST1300 seat wasn’t quite cutting it on long rides, so we decided it was a good candidate for tweaking. We shipped the seat to Spencers’ Florida location along with the requested pictures and details of the problems we had with the stocker. We also included the $75 fee for the two-piece seat assembly (solo seats are $50). Shipping motorcycle seats can be a hassle and prove expensive, so check Spencers’ recently enhanced website for tips.
Our modified seat arrived so quickly we thought there had been a mistake. Nope, Turnier strives to turn around a seat within 24 hours. We hesitated to even print this and it’s no promise, but Turnier works quickly! More importantly, his seat voodoo proved its worth on the first day’s ride–more than 300 miles and no numb butt! Short and long trips since confirm the vastly improved feel.
If your posterior is screaming for assistance but your wallet is not yet ready for the custom seat plunge, Frank “Spencer” Turnier’s seat tweaking could be a viable solution.
For more information contact Spencers Motorcycle Seat Mods, 878 SW 36th Terrace, Palm City, Florida 34990; (772) 418-9712; www.greatdaytoride.com