I try relatively hard not to weave too much of my personal opinion and critical nature into these posts. However, if I were allowing myself to exhale on one specific subject, this would be it.
Hello. My name is Dave, and I have a seat fetish.
The seat alone can make or break a motorcycle build, and this distinction needs to be recognized. All too often, the seat is an overlooked element of some very/would be top notch builds. What it comes down to is the nature of the man holding the wrench. Your common mechanic is, more often then not, an individual with a very technical mind set. That is to say, he sees a motorcycle in schematics - the intricacy of it's parts, and the functional aspects behind them. He is someone who is detail oriented and thinks in numbers. This thought process makes for an astounding mechanic.
What the technical mind set lacks is the ability to visualize, conceptualize, and create, without the use of schematics and diagrams. This individual has the ability to see the end product before touching a single tool. He benefits from being able keep that end goal in mind through out the build, and make decisions based on the reference of that internal image. This, in turn, leads to a more unified aesthetic. However, a lack of technical mindset often results in a bike that may be very visually appealing, yet piss and choke itself out once that starter is kicked.
What my seat gripe stems from, is the tech-mind dominant custom moto world (and the following bike posted on Pipeburn today). A technical mind should never attempt to conquer a craft as creative as custom motorcycle seats. Go to your local custom bike meet and take a walk up and down the street, keeping an eye on the mechanical expertise to seat quality ratio. Some of the most finely crafted motorcycle builds have some of the worst seats I've ever seen. There's just something wrong when the man behind the wrench, after perfectly fine tuning his copper plated, big bore, velocity stacked carbs, got to the seat and said...."a little foam, a t-shirt, and some zip ties. That'll give it that cool rat look."
As previously stated, what brought this simmering pot to a boil was the '76 Honda CB750, recently posted on Pipeburn, built by Evolution Motorsports. I hate to put a face to this rant, but the guys at Evolution Motorsports have built so much awesome shit that a rant by me would be like throwing a pebble at a stone pinata.
Here's the CB they recently released:
Custom built slim oil tank with braided lines, hand crafted aluminum tail section, shaved bar clamps, completely rewired, a stance to die for.... and here's the seat:
If this was my bike, all I would want to do is ride it around all day long. Though a 1/4" of neoprene just doesn't scream "all day long" to me. I'd like to see a pie chart on the amount of time spent fabricating that tail section vs. the amount of time spent cutting out and gluing on that patch neoprene.
Ok, ok. Sorry. My girlfriend tells me I need to be less vocally judgmental. In the design world, vocal critiques are encouraged and met with open ears. Outside of the design world, they're often taken as insults. So let me take this time to say, I absolutely love this bike. It has a truly top notch build quality, and one of the best statures I've seen in a long time.
...but the nature of my fetish makes me want to send Rohan (the owner) a finely crafted seat, so I can plaster pictures of his bike all over my bedroom walls like Backstreet Boys posters.