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Discussion Starter #1
I had a Corbin aftermarket seat installed on my 400 about two weeks ago. So far, I am pretty happy. I bought it from Oneida Suzuki.

Oneida was fairly easy to work with, and invariably answered my e-mails promptly. There was a bit of a glitch in the processing of my credit card, but I suspect this was due to an error on my own part. Shipping was prompt and timely.

I _do_ have two small problems with Oneida, however. One is that they did not show me how much shipping was going to be until my order was complete. It cost almost $60 to have the Corbin shipped to my home, so much that given a chance I would have shopped at other places to see if I could do better. I can't help but beleive that the folks at Oneida had already figured that folks like me might shop around, and set up their site accordingly. Second, due to the fact that I live in a small town and work nights, it is extraordinarily difficult for me to receive a UPS package that requires a signature. I work during normal delivery hours, and the local shipping center is only open three hours a day (which I also work) for package pickup in the event of a missed delivery. This means that to pick up a signature package I have to waste a vacation day. Oneida refused to waive the signature requirement on this shipment, due to the value of the seat. Because of this, I very nearly was not able to receive it. (In the end, my local center opened up an extra day for the Christmas rush, or else my seat would now be back in New York.)

I can't give anyone who will not ship packages via US Mail (which I can easily pick up) a really good service rating. However, I'll give Oneida a 7 for at least replying to their e-mail.

The seat itself is a mixed bag. For those of you who've only tuned in recently, I am truly angry at Suzuki for their inferior seat design. While the seat was comfortable for me for a quick test ride, on trips of thirty minutes or more it rapidly became more and more painful to sit on. I bought several seat cushions, including the famous "Airhawk", and though each helped ease the situation somewhat (the Airhawk most of all) nothing came even close to providing the kind of "all-day" comfort I require from a machine that I expect to sometimes spend, well, all day sitting on.

On the positive side, the Corbin is far more comfortable than the factory model. As advertised, it starts out very firm, though even on its worst day it was far superior to the factory equipment overall. I can already feel it breaking in after just 200 miles or so, and things took a big step forward when I rubbed down the genuine leather with a preservative/waterproofer/conditioner as reccommended by Corbin (though not their overpriced house brand, I fear). This made a large, immediate improvement to an already good situation, and probably would have made a larger one had I read the instructions more closely and realized that the conditioner was _supposed_ to be applied over saddle soap. Whoops!

There are definitely negatives to the Corbin, however. First, it is _very_ pricey. I paid just short of $600 delivered, which is significantly over _10%_ of the brand-new cost of my 400. I don't blame Corbin for this so much; it takes money to produce what is clearly a quality product. However, I want to _strangle_ the Suzuki people every time I think about how they should have done it right the first time. Second, the seat is heavier than the original, enough so that the shock-strut arm will no longer support the weight. Though I've been told that there is a stronger strut available, I've not yet had time to look into this. Yesterday, I tried to improvise a prop rod out of an old broom handle, but discovered that anything long enough to be useful will probably also be too long to easily carry around with me. Third, the Corbin did not fit my bike perfectly. Despite having been reassured about how easy a seat is to install, I chose to pay for an installation after taking one cursory look at the mounting bolts. I was very glad that I did, because the first attempt at installation failed due to the latch not lining up properly. The installer finally had to modify the hardware (a task totally beyond my capabilities) to allow the Corbin to open and close properly. Indeed, even now the latch remains stiffer and harder to operate than the orignal setup. But things are slowly getting better. Either I am getting better at operating the improvised system, or the parts are wearing in. I suspect a little of both. I plan on calling the factory up soon, to let them know about my fitting issues. I'm not seeking a refund, just wanting to keep them informed so that they can (hopefully) improve things.

I'll also note that the Corbin sits just a smidge higher than the factory model. Whether that's good or bad is purely subjective, I suppose. For me, it doesn't matter either way. It also creates a little more legroom, according to another forum member who's tried mine. I, however, don't even notice it.

Overall, I rate the Corbin an 8.5. It's too expensive, and didn't quite fit perfectly. However, it _did_ solve my pain problem when nothing else would work, and for that I am very grateful.

One closing note: Corbin's seats come with a rather nifty-looking backrest system. However, the backrests which fit it cost something like $200 apiece. For that kind of money, I fully intend to try and do without. If anyone else tries one, however, I'd be pleased to hear of their experiences.
 

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Just a note. The Corbin Conditioner may be pricey, but it works great. I use it on my V-Strom Corbin seat, my leather jackets, boots and gloves. Going into my third riding season, I still have some left in the original bottle - it lasts pretty well. One application per riding season seems to keep all the leather gear in nice shape. I'll probably buy another bottle of it when this one runs out. $12.75 isn't so much to pay for something that keeps all the expensive leather gear nice for 3 years.

The price for the backrests is outrageous though. I've had 3 Corbin seats on different motorcycles. Never bought a backrest. Never missed having one.
 

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I've been seriously considering getting a Corbin for my 400, but after hearing about the fitting problem I'm having second thoughts. Has any other members bought one for the 400, and have you also had fitting problems?
 

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Lapine Rider;

Thanks for a good report, but as I suspected I will still need to sit on one for myself.
This is the second time I heard about the "fit" issue, but as they say "all's well that ends well"
Not so funny about the shipping price ( Oneida )
-which may or may not be fair-
but for a company that has good prices and is fast on emails I never got an answer to my email asking about the price to ship a Corbin seat .
It seems I may get a better deal from the factory when you conceder the free color options.
Shipping, from the factory to south Texas is around 40 dollars
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Perhaps I should clarify the "fit issue" here a little more. In my previous post, I was trying not to drag on too long.

I went to a very large (perhaps the largest in the state) Suzuki dealer to put the seat on. They spent maybe an hour and a half on it, then returned the bike with an explanation that the latch hadn't quite lined up and that therefore it was now very difficult to open and close. I opened it with a _very_ heavy effort on the key, and then it would not close at all for anyone, including the mechanic.

I sent the bike back for them to try again, and they worked on it for maybe another half hour before telling me that things simply would not line up unless they "spilt" something; I forget what term they used. I had decided that I trusted these guys, so I told them to do whatever they thought right. They worked on it with what appeared to be a small power cutting tool for a bit, then brought it back around for me. The mechanism worked then, with considerable effort. This, they said was the best they could do. I beleived them then, and still do now.

The situation is livable, though I fear premature failure of the lock mechanism because of the higher effort. (Why Suzuki doesn't use a nice, simple, hard-to-break seperate locking mechanism for the trunk like Honda's Silverwing does is beyond me.) The situation is especially tolerable for me because of the high degree of personal discomfort that would be involved in putting the factory seat back on. Indeed, on a day-to-day basis I find the extra weight of the seat overloading the support arm to be a much more annoying (though hopefully easier to fix) problem than the out-of-line latch.

I don't want people to think that the seat is _totally_ out of kilter; that would not be fair to Corbin. It's not perfect, no. And I feel that it was and is right and proper for me to make note of this in my review. On the other hand, it should not be blown out of proportion, either.

I'd buy another Corbin, if I needed a new seat.
 

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seat fit

Hi kids I put a corbin on my 04 400 late fall of 04 and the seat did not

want to latch. I called corbin and they said that the rubber pads on

te seat needed time to break in. I did have to take the latch part off the

seat and file the holes in the bracket to kind of a oval to get the latch

to cetch it. Now it shuts nice and snug.

Happy Scooten :lol:
 

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Flojo and Lapine: Does the Corbin seat slant down towards the rear so your butt doesn't slide forward? Thats what aggravates me most about the OEM seat.
 

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slope

Hi ted I have only put around 200 miles on the bike with the new seat.

The seat does not have a pocket that you can feel to hold you in, but

when you hit bumps you don't scoot forward like te stock seat. I am

pleased with it. The stock seat I had with a jac vinsen back rest and

pad. It worked great but my butt couldn't take the seat for more than

45 min. Thats why I am trying a corbin.

Happy Scooten :p
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Right after putting dressing on the seat, it was a little slick and for a few miles I slid forward a half-inch or so when braking. This went away soon, and since then I've been just fine in this regard.
 

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It also should be noted that Lapine Rider doesn't ride in the feet forward postion which may make him more prone to sliding forward on the seat.
 

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I like having the key mechanism controlling the seat lock, fork lock and ignition all at once. I wouldn't want a seperate lock for the seat. I'd also like to see the glovebox unlocked by the same mechanism and have it lock when the fork lock is engaged.

If it's difficult to release the seat then something needs to be adjusted. You don't want to mess up your key or ignition.
 
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