Upholstery Styling Guide
For Custom Seat Services / Sargent Cycle Products
Style is everything. Well, maybe next to speed. This guide is designed to help you understand upholstery treatments and how we use materials, color, and design to give your bike an exciting new look. And, should you decide to layout your own upholstery, this information will help you make better design decisions and communicate your ideas to us more easily.
Standard patterns. Motorcycle seats come in an endless array of shapes and styles. For any given stock seat, we may have different patterns, one for each upholstery type (i.e. pleated vinyl, Griptex, etc.). Each pattern is designed to be a good blend of style and function.
Special requests? No problem. Creation of a one-off pattern to accommodate a special request can take extra time, but the results can be very rewarding. If you have your own ideas, just let us know and we will be more than happy to help. Extra charges will usually apply based on the degree of difficulty. Please call or fax us your request for pricing and pre-approval. NOTE: If you decide to have your foam shape changed (see Foam Alteration Guide), the foam alteration charge includes a fee for the one-off patterning of the upholstery.
Upholstery talk. This illustration shows how we define the various upholstery components so we can "speak the same language" when discussing your needs.
How we do it. The illustrations below will give you an idea of how we typically style our upholstery per type of seat shape and material selection. They also serve as excellent references when communicating with us. NOTE: Solid black lines indicate welt, dashed lines indicate top stitches.
Deluxe Pleat (#4) available for an additional charge - see Price List
Button Fit (Recommended for cruisers and touring seats only.)
Style #10 No Longer Offered.
Sport and Sport Touring Styles
With late model sport and sport touring models, upholstery styling is varied and options are abundant. The following illustrations are designed to help communicate more subtle upholstery details.
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Solo-Style with a Color-Coordinated Rear Trim Section - Suitable for Use with A Rear Cowl.
This design features a black division band where the cowl hits the seat when it is installed.
With a Tri-Color Flag Option (13)
Without a Tri-Color Flag Option (14)
Solo-Style with a "Wrap-Around" Color-Coordinated Rear Trim.
With a Tri-Color Flag Option (15)
Without a Tri-Color Flag Option (16)
Two-Up Style with Matching Front and Rear Seating Inserts.
With a Tri-Color Flag Option (17)
Without a Tri-Color Flag Option (18)
Dual Sport / Dirt Bike Seats
While the upholstery configuration on the front seat remains the same, different uphosltery styling on the reat seat can really customize the look. Generally, the trim color on the front seat and rear seat covers is the same.
Two-Up Style with Matching Inserts Front and Rear. (19)
Solo-Style with Color-Coordinated Rear Trim. (20)
V-Cut Style with unique "V" Insert in Rear Seat
to match Front Seat Insert. (21)
The two basic seam types are Top Stitch and Welt. Many of our upholstery designs utilize both types, with careful consideration to style and function. Below are illustrations of each and an explanation of their use. There is no extra charge to change or substitute seam types on our standard patterns. If you have a particular preference, just let us know.
Top Stitch. In this joint, the two materials are sewn together, folded back, and then restitched or topstitched. This creates a low profile, but a very strong joint. This seam is used where a subtle effect is needed or where a high-profile welt would interfere with the driver's or passenger's leg or thigh.
Welt. Although this seam is all show, it is also very strong. Here, two materials are joined together with a rolled vinyl or extruded plastic welt between them. Unlike top stitches, the thread is not visible. Welt is used to accent a seam and, when color is added, the effect can be dramatic. Colored welt is an extra option (see price list). Welt is also known as "piping" or "bead."
Remember. Each type of seam has its place. Good upholstery design often utilizes both.
Adding color to your seat is one of the most exciting ways to customize your bike. For trim and welt, we have over one hundred colors to choose from. Textured insert materials are available in black only.
Pre-selected colors are available for some models but, because of the complexity of paint, especially metallic colors, choosing the right shade of vinyl is often a matter of opinion. If you prefer, you may request a color-match kit containing actual vinyl swatches; that way, the choice is yours. Sending a sample (body panel, paint chip, etc.) to us is also an option, and we will be glad to make the choice for you. Or, we might suggest that you match the paint color of your bike by working with a local printing shop. Most, or all, print shops have a PANTONE Color Formula Guide - and so do we. If you can identify a PANTONE color code (on "coated" stock for a glossier finish) and share that with us, then it's an excellent starting point for us to research and find a complimentary color. As always, it's best to match color in natural sunlight, rather than artificial lighting.
Classic Americana styling, skirts, chrome studs, and leather fringe are also available. Call for prices.
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