Ultimate BeadRider Motorcycle Seat ReviewIf your ride Iron Butt distance style, or ride often, you’ve probably experienced a phenomenon known variously as “vinyl burn,” “butt burn,” “saddle burn,” or something even less repeatable.
It is that sensation akin to sitting on a hot plate set on medium-high, making every mile ridden very unpleasant after butt burn begins.Butt burn can be attributed to two factors: close contact with most common seat materials that aren’t designed to facilitate cooling, and no air movement along the seating surface.As the miles accumulate so does the perspiration, pressure and discomfort. Before you know it, it feels like your jeans are made out of duct tape and you are stuck, immobile and chafing in your motorcycle’s saddle.The solution lies in an unobtrusive way to get air flow, comfort and easy movement for position changes to reduce those annoying pressure points.Maybe you’ve tried gel cushions, various foam rubber pads, air cushions or some home-made approaches like pillows, fiber cushions or pads of various type and compositions.Of course, they don’t stay in place, don’t breathe well, and create pressure points of their own — not to mention changing the seat height just enough to make a noticeable difference.Enter the folks at BeadRider and its Ultimate BeadRider Seat, which was designed by motorcyclists Nancy Collins and Chris Sakala.The result of several years of development and progressive improvements, the BeadRider is made of reinforced ceramic composite beads strung on tough web materials to fend off exposure to weather and many miles of steady use. If you do manage to eventually cause the bead mat to start wearing out, repair kits that include new beads and thread are available.The Ultimate BeadRider fits many saddle configurations well, but fits the saddle of a Harley-Davidson 883R Sportster like it was custom made for it.In use on some day-long rides in high humidity and temps in the upper 80s, fitted to a Triumph Bonneville America and H-D Sportster 883R with stock saddles, the BeadRider did the job of preventing any sign of saddle burn and helped minimize perspiration.Changing seating position was easier than overcoming the friction of the standard vinyl seat covers.If there were to be one minor modification to the product to consider it would be to create a tapered edge all around the mat by using smaller diameter beads on the outermost edge. This would serve to minimize the potential for any pressure points at the edge.Complete product specifications, pricing and warranty information are on the BeadRider website.
This week we ride two genre-departing motorcycles from the established American manufacturers. Jess McKinley gives us his thoughts on the all new Harley-Davidson Pan America Special, and Ron Lieback gives his on Indian’s latest version of the FTR 1200 S.