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Old October 9th, 2017, 05:13 PM   #1
deetz
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New rider in North NJ

My wife just took her rider class last weekend we picked up a '05 Ninjettw for her this weekend. I've been riding for 4 years myself on a Yamaha yzf600r. Looking forward to seeing her learn on the bike!

It's a bit tall for her still so we're going to try and shave the seat this coming weekend before taking drastic measures of lowering links and the like.
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Old October 9th, 2017, 05:29 PM   #2
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deetz! Glad to have you aboard...
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Old October 9th, 2017, 07:05 PM   #3
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Old October 10th, 2017, 04:30 AM   #4
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Welcome deetz!

As a shorter guy (5'7" if I eat my Wheaties) I can definitely sympathize with your wife's challenges. Good that you're looking to do seat mods instead of lowering the bike... that's the best path.

Consider picking up a second seat on eBay to shave. The process is not reversible and will likely affect your ability to sell the bike.

I can tell you first-hand that while it seems really scary to have a too-tall bike at first, it does get better with experience.

There are a few other things she can do to help that require no mods to the bike. If she's a rank beginner, chances are she really wants to get both feet firmly on the ground at the same time... including getting a heel down. Important for confidence while learning, but not truly necessary.

She might try learning to shift her butt to one side a bit so that she can get one foot, or at least the ball of the foot, firmly down even if the other is just on tip-toe. This takes some confidence that the bike isn't going to just fall over, but it certainly does work. My track bike is an R6 (seat height a few inches higher than my inseam) and I'm on tippy-toes when sitting square on the seat. Just having one toe down at a time and shifting over when I need a foot down is how I manage the bike. I will note that I did shave the seat but it's still "too tall for comfort" as they say. If I had to go with the stock height I could.

Another thing is to get as tight up against the tank as possible when getting a foot down. This allows a more upright posture, which rotates the pelvis and in effect allows the legs to be "longer"

Here are some pics of Dani Pedrosa. He's all of 5'4", so short his feet actually dangle a couple of inches off the ground when he's sitting square in the saddle. Check out that pic of him standing next to the bike!

While he does have mechanics there to hold his MotoGP bike for him in the pits, he still has to hold it up on the grid. He does it by shifting to one side.





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Old October 10th, 2017, 10:30 AM   #5
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Old October 10th, 2017, 04:51 PM   #6
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Old October 10th, 2017, 04:59 PM   #7
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Old October 10th, 2017, 05:26 PM   #8
deetz
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Thanks all. I definitely do think as my wife gets more comfortable she'll be able to move her butt around figure out how to manage the bike a bit more. Until then, having the comfort of feet on the ground especially when dealing with hills or slippery stuff on the ground will be super helpful.

I'm going to write up my experiences at shaving the seat when I do it this weekend. If that's not enough, the next step may be lowering her with some links.
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Old October 10th, 2017, 08:47 PM   #9
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I was noticing that my bike feels shorter now than when I first got her. Experience helps! I've seen short riders who wear built-up shoes, which helps get that little bit of "reach." Good luck with shaving the seat, and I hope it helps your wife's confidence!
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Old October 11th, 2017, 02:53 AM   #10
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Old October 11th, 2017, 06:30 AM   #11
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When seat shaving, width is, if anything, more important than height. A wide seat forces the legs apart.

The important part to shave width-wise is up near the tank. That's where the rider's pelvis is at a stop. You might even be able to trim a little width off the seat base as well.

That's what I did with my R6 track bike's seat. The front part has been trimmed so that it's no wider than the sub-frame.

For a really good profile in a seat that accommodates short people, look at (and try to emulate) the seat on the current GSX-Rs... (my street bike). Note how the sides are cut in near the front of the saddle, making it narrower.




Contrast this with the R6 front seat. See how much broader the seat is up near the nose?



You wouldn't think such a minor thing would make much of a difference, but it's HUGE.
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Old October 11th, 2017, 12:01 PM   #12
deetz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adouglas View Post
When seat shaving, width is, if anything, more important than height. A wide seat forces the legs apart.

The important part to shave width-wise is up near the tank. That's where the rider's pelvis is at a stop. You might even be able to trim a little width off the seat base as well.

That's what I did with my R6 track bike's seat. The front part has been trimmed so that it's no wider than the sub-frame.

For a really good profile in a seat that accommodates short people, look at (and try to emulate) the seat on the current GSX-Rs... (my street bike). Note how the sides are cut in near the front of the saddle, making it narrower.




Contrast this with the R6 front seat. See how much broader the seat is up near the nose?



You wouldn't think such a minor thing would make much of a difference, but it's HUGE.
Awesome thanks. My wife has been noticing that the pegs actually get in the way of her legs going straight down and closer to the bike. Anyone else have experience on how to solve that issue? I'm afraid even if I narrow down the front so her legs can drop straight down, the pegs are still going to force her legs out wider.
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Old October 11th, 2017, 12:26 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deetz View Post
Awesome thanks. My wife has been noticing that the pegs actually get in the way of her legs going straight down and closer to the bike. Anyone else have experience on how to solve that issue? I'm afraid even if I narrow down the front so her legs can drop straight down, the pegs are still going to force her legs out wider.
Rearset adapter plates do exactly that.

Originally meant for race bikes, the adapter plates move the pegs up and back. Ideally used in conjunction with clip-ons, but not truly necessary. You need to extend the shift rod for obvious reasons (parts included with the plates).

I had some on my newgen and was able to put my legs straight down.

Don't know if they'll fit a pregen or not, or if there are specific parts available for your bike. But as you can see, they're pretty simple... just a pair of aluminum plates. Easy enough to make if you're moderately skilled, or a piece of cake for a machine shop.

Or, you can just buy some actual rearsets. More expensive, though.

Ergonomically, they put the rider's feet a bit higher up (not a problem for your diminutive wife, most likely) and the knees are more bent.



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Old October 11th, 2017, 02:38 PM   #14
deetz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adouglas View Post
Rearset adapter plates do exactly that.

Originally meant for race bikes, the adapter plates move the pegs up and back. Ideally used in conjunction with clip-ons, but not truly necessary. You need to extend the shift rod for obvious reasons (parts included with the plates).

I had some on my newgen and was able to put my legs straight down.

Don't know if they'll fit a pregen or not, or if there are specific parts available for your bike. But as you can see, they're pretty simple... just a pair of aluminum plates. Easy enough to make if you're moderately skilled, or a piece of cake for a machine shop.

Or, you can just buy some actual rearsets. More expensive, though.

Ergonomically, they put the rider's feet a bit higher up (not a problem for your diminutive wife, most likely) and the knees are more bent.



Interesting. Thanks for the tip. Time to do a bunch of research on rearsets.
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Old October 11th, 2017, 05:41 PM   #15
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Old October 11th, 2017, 06:02 PM   #16
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The pegs get in my way, too. I have had to find where to put my feet. I think in front of the pegs is slightly easier.
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Old October 12th, 2017, 09:20 AM   #17
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Where in Northern NJ?

I commute between Hoboken and Brooklyn during the weekdays, then ride back to Valley Forge, PA for the wknds... sometimes through Hunterdon County..
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Old October 12th, 2017, 11:23 AM   #18
deetz
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Originally Posted by "A" View Post
Where in Northern NJ?

I commute between Hoboken and Brooklyn during the weekdays, then ride back to Valley Forge, PA for the wknds... sometimes through Hunterdon County..
Cool! We actually live in Manhattan but keep our bikes near Morristown, NJ. Do you make the Brooklyn commute on a bike?
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Old October 12th, 2017, 11:46 AM   #19
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Cool! We actually live in Manhattan but keep our bikes near Morristown, NJ. Do you make the Brooklyn commute on a bike?

Last year on my 04 Ninja 250, this year on a Burgman 650, twist-n-go, tons of underseat space.
15 miles from Hoboken to Coney Isl usually takes 35-45 min. going between car mirrors.
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