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Discussion Starter #1
Here's the problem: My wife hates riding behind me with her head higher than mine. She was fine with the Vespa seat - she could hug me and was at the same level as me.

Does someone make a Vespa style seat for a Burgman ('12) 400? Is there someone who makes custom seats? She wants to sit right behind me.

If not, is there another scooter around that has a "level" seat in the 400 cc size range?
 

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Hopefully, someone with firsthand knowledge will respond, but custom seat makers like Corbin and Daylong use the stock seat pan as the foundation for their custom upholstery. The seat pan is designed with the higher pillion position. A seat maker could buildup the rider position and 'shave-down the pillion, but I don't think you'd gain more than an inch differential and may affect your ability to flat-foot or your wife's general comfort. To 'Vespa-ize' your seat, you would need to have a custom pan designed and fabricated, which, if you could find someone to do it, would be very expensive. (And you would lose some underseat storage volume).

My wife is the opposite. It's the 180 degree view she gets by being able to see over my helmet that makes touring so enjoyable for her. And she can still grab me pretty good, too. To each her own, I guess.
 

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There is something you can do, but not much. First it depends on how much higher she sits above your head. Depending on her comfort needs you can cut the passenger seat down some. An inch at most and that may be overdoing it a bit. As mentioned above, you could add some padding to the driver but that has issues as well.

In the end, due to the angle that the seat is slanted it will be impossible to make her even with you. The only way to make it the way you want would be to raise the driver up. It could be done but you would need some really long legs.
 

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At this point you might have to consider trading her in..... For a shorter wife... LOL
 

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A custom seat pan fabricated to allow the passenger to sit "in" the trunk so to say is possible. It would be costly if you are not a sheet metal fabricator. But some of the Japanese scooter tuners have done it.
 

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lowdown seat?

My wife has yet to try pillion on the Burgman (second week only and she is cold blooded), but my daughter loves it - after the Piaggio x8 it gives her a great panorama, and lets everyone see who's up there!

So there are two of us careering around town with the Burgman smile, and she would certainly not want her seat lowering!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
So, the design of the Burgman saddle is the fundamental problem. What are opinions of the Vespa GTS 300 or the Piaggio MP3 400 - Just in terms of the saddle design?

I enjoy riding so much I want to share the fun with my wife. We've been married 43 years, and trading in the bike for a better one for the wifey is a possibility, although I really enjoy the Burg.
 

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If you have the time and money, John Longo in the DC area might be able to hook you up. You would have to drop it off for a week or so. I have seen some of his work and it is very good.

http://www.johnlongo.net/
 

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So, the design of the Burgman saddle is the fundamental problem. What are opinions of the Vespa GTS 300 or the Piaggio MP3 400 - Just in terms of the saddle design?

I enjoy riding so much I want to share the fun with my wife. We've been married 43 years, and trading in the bike for a better one for the wifey is a possibility, although I really enjoy the Burg.
I've been on the burgmanusa forum for almost 9 years, and your post is the very first complaint of this nature I've come across. Due respect - but there isn't a fundamental problem with the Burgman pillion seat. Although, I suppose I could agree with you by saying that the Burgman shares the same shortcomings as other 'questionable' touring machines like the Goldwing, FJR, BMW R1200/K1600, etc. all of which have elevated pillion positions.

I can only infer that you do not do longer distance touring 'cause as fun as the Vespa is - it ain't no 2-Up touring machine. And I can't get my head around the idea that a pillion would prefer looking at the back of the rider's helmet rather than over it. But I do understand the joy of sharing the fun of riding with the wife - so that has to be the No. 1 consideration. Concessions must be made. Are there any concessions the wife can make (helmet/face shield maybe?) short of getting rid of the Burgman?
 

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My wife has the same problem. She says it beats her helmet. The solution? She has me run the windshield all the way up! She says it helps a lot so happy wife = happy me!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
My wife is new to pillion!

I've been on the burgmanusa forum for almost 9 years, and your post is the very first complaint of this nature I've come across. Due respect - but there isn't a fundamental problem with the Burgman pillion seat. Although, I suppose I could agree with you by saying that the Burgman shares the same shortcomings as other 'questionable' touring machines like the Goldwing, FJR, BMW R1200/K1600, etc. all of which have elevated pillion positions.

I can only infer that you do not do longer distance touring 'cause as fun as the Vespa is - it ain't no 2-Up touring machine. And I can't get my head around the idea that a pillion would prefer looking at the back of the rider's helmet rather than over it. But I do understand the joy of sharing the fun of riding with the wife - so that has to be the No. 1 consideration. Concessions must be made. Are there any concessions the wife can make (helmet/face shield maybe?) short of getting rid of the Burgman?
You make very good points. My wife is simply not interested in touring and had only accompanied me on the back of the Vespa on short hops. On the Burgman she says she feels totally exposed and unsafe. We've tried it a number of times and each time within 100 yards she shouts STOP! In Bermuda she was behind me wherever we went on a rented scooter. She's not willing to "just tough it out" for a while to get acclimated to the Burgman. Thus, I'm thinking of the Vespa, which to me is less satisfactory personally.
 

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Aah, now I understand. Tough call. If the priorities are 2-up, short hops, 'level' rider/pillion seating - then the Vespa certainly fits the bill.
 
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