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Old April 22nd, 2018, 06:06 PM   #1
Angel-be-Good
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Ergo-Fit Extended Reach Seat: Ride report

For the Ninja 400, Kawasaki makes available an Ergo-Fit Extended Reach Seat (kawasaki.com). One of the YouTube reviews I was watching mentioned the availability of the seat, but didn't have the opportunity to test it.

I just got mine yesterday. The seat height of the 400 feels identical to the 250 I had, which is to say very comfortable and easy to ride, but definitely feeling a bit small. I'm not huge, just 5'10", but I do like the extra space of other bikes I've ridden. Loved loved the 36" seat height of the Yamaha WR250R I had for a while. I wasn't sure how much difference the Kawasaki Ergo-Fit seat would make, but I took the plunge.

Installing the seat is a breeze -- pull off the stock seat, and plug in the new one. The Ergo-Fit seat does ship with two small 2" x 0.25" adhesive pads that the instructions indicate should be affixed to the bike, where the bike's plastic and the seat meet. The instructions aren't clear about what the pads do, but my guess is that they cover up the sharp plastic edge of the under-seat compartment to avoid wearing on the seat upholstery 🤷*♀️

In terms of build / shape / material, it's nearly identical to the stock seat, but with an extra inch of foam padding. Same texture to the upholstery

Alright, what's it like to use? Today I took it for 150 miles of some of the best roads I know, from San Francisco to Bodega Bay and back. Some freeway, but mostly narrow backroads, almost none of which are perfectly paved.

The extra 1" of seat height makes a big difference in the perceived size of the bike. It now fits like a bigger bike -- longer reach to the ground, slightly reduced angle of knee bend, and the reach to the handlebars is a bit steeper. I'm a fan. Apart from the reach to the ground, consider it a trade between reducing knee bend and increasing back bend. If your back is the weak point in your endurance, the Ergo-Fit probably won't help. If your legs get sore first, you might like the seat.

Apart from geometry, I didn't expect improvement in comfort...but the extra padding on the Ergo-Fit is a huge benefit. I mentioned before, in my post about my first ride with the Ninja 400, that the suspension is surprisingly stiff. Better than bouncy, but it's not plush. The extra padding in the seat makes a big difference in comfort over rough pavement. It's a bit squidgy, the extra foam reduces the connection I feel to the bike through my butt. But when I'm riding hard, when I want all the connection and feel I can get, I'm not sitting in the seat anyway, I'm standing on the pegs. When I'm lazily cruising, my ass is enjoying the extra comfort.

I'll post some pictures later when I pull them off my camera. Should have a good before and after view, which may or may not be useful at all. I'm very satisfied with the purchase. The fact the Ninja 400 is a small bike that fits like a bigger bike, can be ridden fast like a slow bike but has all the power for passing and heavy winds, makes me want to call it daywalker -- all of the strengths of a small bike, none of the weaknesses.
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Old April 29th, 2018, 12:00 PM   #2
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Update: I made a dumb video.

Link to original page on YouTube.

Here's a before/after photo of me on the bike, not sure if it illustrates anything in particular but for the curious...

Attached Images
File Type: jpg ergo-fit_03.jpg (127.6 KB, 83 views)
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Old April 29th, 2018, 05:49 PM   #3
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Do you ride with your elbows locked like that?
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Old April 29th, 2018, 06:54 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adouglas View Post
Do you ride with your elbows locked like that?
Always, that way I have maximum pressure pushing down the front wheel for maximum traction.

Wait.

Yes -- I mentioned I'm not especially tall, but I also should have mentioned that my arms ARE especially short.

Wait.

Nah, I don't.
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Old April 30th, 2018, 08:46 AM   #5
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Seat looks like it's doing the job! In comparison pic, your thighs are aimed downwards a little with higher seat. Probably doesn't cramp up your legs as much on longer rides huh?

A lot of people just jack up ride-height to make bike feel bigger. But.. that's only when you've got feet on ground.
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Old April 30th, 2018, 08:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angel-be-Good View Post
Always, that way I have maximum pressure pushing down the front wheel for maximum traction.

Wait.

Yes -- I mentioned I'm not especially tall, but I also should have mentioned that my arms ARE especially short.

Wait.

Nah, I don't.
Great response! I have no idea what you mean but you were specific, to the point, and exact.
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Old May 11th, 2018, 07:42 AM   #7
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Thank you Ryan for your your great review and for the real nice video. I hope we meet someday soon: I'm also in San Franchisshy. It would be a pleasure to talk with you. —Randy.
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Old May 11th, 2018, 09:01 AM   #8
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"Up a lil more less high"

It's a good review, better than the Leonard from Community lol

Hopefully that seat gets easier to re-fit.
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Old May 11th, 2018, 12:27 PM   #9
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Old May 11th, 2018, 01:45 PM   #10
Angel-be-Good
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randycastell View Post
Thank you Ryan for your your great review and for the real nice video. I hope we meet someday soon: I'm also in San Franchisshy. It would be a pleasure to talk with you. —Randy.
I saw a white 300 with a slip-on go down 2nd Street yesterday...

Quote:
Originally Posted by DEFY View Post
Hopefully that seat gets easier to re-fit.
Yeah, it fits on and off super easy now -- just took some convincing the first time ✌️
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Old July 16th, 2021, 05:39 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Angel-be-Good View Post
Always, that way I have maximum pressure pushing down the front wheel for maximum traction.

Wait.

Yes -- I mentioned I'm not especially tall, but I also should have mentioned that my arms ARE especially short.

Wait.

Nah, I don't.
I read this response like an old timey telegram
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