Passenger Comfort Mods - Floor boards and Ultimate Seat?


Information and questions on GL1500 Goldwings (1988-2000)
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XJSRider
Posts: 157
Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2020 2:45 pm
Location: New Britain, CT
Motorcycle: 1993 GL1500A

Passenger Comfort Mods - Floor boards and Ultimate Seat?

Post by XJSRider »



We are getting to the home stretch here...

My gf is small, 5-3 maybe 120 lbs. She has some back issues and is most comfortable when she can be sitting straight up. Also her legs are too short to comfortably reach the passenger running boards.

Looking for help on two fronts.

The Seat. I personally do not like the stock seat, it gets way too hot and I find it puts a lot of pressure on "the boys" and tail bone. Have a corbin on another bike and really like it. However the Ultimate seat caught my eye because the passenger back rest is "...10 degrees straighter". This may kill 2 birds, better seat for me, straighter back for her. Does anyone have one of these seats? I generally like a firmer seat but as long as it is supportive and can breath better than stock it would be a worthwhile upgrade. I'm most interested in passenger reports on the back rest and its angle. I'm leaning away from the corbin just because she also prefers a flatter backrest (main reason we went with 1500 over 1800) and the ultimate seemed flatter and more vertical than the corbin, at least from pics. I don't know anyone around CT with either of these seats to see in person. Crazy gamble to buy sight unseen...

Passenger Running Boards. Short of laminating a few pieces of plywood (and loosing fold up ability) Any way to raise up the passenger running boards? I've found some adjustable ones for the gl1800 but can't track down anything for the 1500. Found some passenger highway pegs, but she likes the normal, almost what I would call a standard motorcycle riding position. So guys with short wives, what's the play?

On an unrelated note, the final battle with the bike before slapping back on all the plastic, aside from this post, is the faint smell of coolant I get while it is running. Can't tell if I am loosing it super slow and it is insta-vaporizing or it is just residue that is cooking off. The reservoir was empty when I got the bike, but after topping the level and paying attention to how much I had in there, did not notice a drop the morning after a 150 mile ride. I got some coolant safe UV dye and dosed it yesterday then went for a ride. Will take it out again today after work then check with the light for leaks. The dye worked great for me trying to find a leak in AC system on a car. I look forward to the bike's "reveal" post and thank yous when it is done!



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Andy Cote
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Re: Passenger Comfort Mods - Floor boards and Ultimate Seat?

Post by Andy Cote »

I know you saw them but Kuryakyn makes both transformer boards and cruise pegs for the passenger. These may help. Note that the cruise pegs say they fit both GL1500 and GL1800.

There were a couple companies that made risers for the passenger floorboards similar to the ones you found for the GL1800. Not sure but if the cruise pegs fit both, it's possible the GL1800 risers will work. In all honesty, they are not real complicated and could be made fairly simply. Just make sure they are strong enough to stand on.

I had an Ultimate on my GL1500 and liked it very much. Not enough pillion feedback however to provide any guidance. Sorry.

Aftermarket parts for the GL1500 are getting a bit harder to find. You likely will need to watch for used. Also used should be cheaper and if you don't like the results, you can resell and get most or all your money back.
2018 Goldwing, basic black

Previously: GL1200 standard, GL1200 Interstate, GL1500 Goldwing, GL1500 Valkyrie Standard, 2000 Valkyrie Interstate, many other Hondas

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aj1500
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Re: Passenger Comfort Mods - Floor boards and Ultimate Seat?

Post by aj1500 »

The SE models came with passenger boards that raised straight up and down. I had them on mine but removed them and replaced with the fold up highway pegs, not sure if they are the switchblades or not
my wife has back trouble and the highway pegs worked better for her than the floor boards going up. If you want to go with boards look for a used set from an SE model. it would not be that hard to add them to a non SE bike, just make sure you get the cables and lever to operate them. also if you want to improve the straight up position of the passenger back rest you can change the padding to one from the 1800. I put the backrest foam and cover on my 1500 backrest frame. it sets in more at the bottom and wraps around wider giving a more upright position than the stock seat.
this is the only pic I have at the moment but I think you can see the difference, the 1800 backrest is on the white one



Solo So Long
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Motorcycle: 1989 GL1500
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Kawasaki Coyote (early 1970s)
Honda 350 (mid 1970s)
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Re: Passenger Comfort Mods - Floor boards and Ultimate Seat?

Post by Solo So Long »

I'm using a set of pax pegs that fit into (and can be removed from) cast mounts. When riding solo, they fit into one of the boxes. They have 2 positions, one about an inch higher than the other.

They came with the bike, so I don't know who made them.

XJSRider
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Re: Passenger Comfort Mods - Floor boards and Ultimate Seat?

Post by XJSRider »

The adjustable SE Passenger Boards seems like a great choice! I found a set on fleabay for 60 bucks with the cable. They don't have the handle that goes on the non-floor board side. I checked the parts diagram but it is not clear where that handle is supposed to go. How is it setup on an SE? Does it screw down someplace or could it be operated loose? I assume this will be a set it and forget it kind of thing for her. She will be able to use them to step up without them moving?

Appreciate the tip also about the 1800 back rest, but she does not like any type of side bolsters, it was actually a major reason why we went with the 1500. A flat, vertical backrest is what she wants. I may play with the stock one and try to shim it against the top case to adjust the angle.

I called up Ultimate and they are out of seats, so special order or not it is looking like 5 weeks. Still hunting around their distributors maybe I will get lucky. Have a several thousand mile trip coming up would like to get it sorted before then. Otherwise maybe I'll try an Airhawk.

Solo So Long
Posts: 84
Joined: Thu Mar 26, 2020 4:07 pm
Location: Northern Nevada
Motorcycle: 1989 GL1500
1983 GW Interstate (ready to repair)
A pack of Super Cubs
Formerly (in order):
Honda Super Cub (bought 1968, sold ?)
Kawasaki Coyote (early 1970s)
Honda 350 (mid 1970s)
Kawasaki KZ900-PS (1977)
Honda Super Cubs (various years)
Kawasaki KZ1000C (1978)
Kawasaki KZ1000P (various years, 1980 - 2005)
Honda 360 (1983)
BMW R1150RT-P (2001)
BMW R1200RT-P (various years 2007 - 2018, NEVER AGAIN)

Re: Passenger Comfort Mods - Floor boards and Ultimate Seat?

Post by Solo So Long »

You might prefer the Airhawk over a custom seat and pads.

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aj1500
Posts: 413
Joined: Fri May 29, 2015 8:05 am
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Motorcycle: 97 1500 SE
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Double Dark Side # 1522
Goodyear Fuel max 175/60 R16
PILOT ACTIV 130/70 18
USCA# 8913

Re: Passenger Comfort Mods - Floor boards and Ultimate Seat?

Post by aj1500 »

there is a cable for each board that goes to a central mount under the seat and connects to a single cable, this in turn goes to the passenger side just under the pocket. that is where the lever goes.
if you buy the set up I can get you some good pictures, also I still have all the cable and hardware on my bike that could be removed and shipped for a few bucks ;)
you can climb on and off when they are up but it can be a little awkward to do because they are higher that the stock boards

XJSRider
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Re: Passenger Comfort Mods - Floor boards and Ultimate Seat?

Post by XJSRider »

AJ I'll PM you I'd like to take you up on that offer to buy the cables handle and hardware.

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aj1500
Posts: 413
Joined: Fri May 29, 2015 8:05 am
Location: Savannah Ga
Motorcycle: 97 1500 SE
Motorvation II sidecar
Double Dark Side # 1522
Goodyear Fuel max 175/60 R16
PILOT ACTIV 130/70 18
USCA# 8913

Re: Passenger Comfort Mods - Floor boards and Ultimate Seat?

Post by aj1500 »

got it
here is where the lever goes





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