September 17, 2013
*UPDATE* Issa and I are always concerned with being open and honest about our reviews of products. We post these reviews with the hopes that they’re useful to other riders and welcome feedback. Subsequent to our original posting of this review we’ve been sponsored by AIRHAWK so we thought we’d take a moment to make that clear. We’d also like to say the the original review remains unchanged and provides the same, honest feedback it always has. When choosing who we wanted as sponsors it was important to us that they’d appreciate honest feedback to assist in product development and in the refinement of the gear we use. We also hoped to work with companies that understand the importance of honest, experience-based reviews for other adventurers who are considering their products for use. So there you go – we want you to know exactly where we stand!
Before purchasing the Airhawk 2, I was able to comfortably ride for about two hours at a time before any discomfort set in, three before I would absolutely need time off the seat. I’m not talking about a long break, but some good time off the bike. A long fuel stop or proper coffee session seemed to always do the trick. Although once back on the saddle, the time between fidgeting would seem to shorten. The F650GS stock seat is still far cushier than others I’d been on, but still presents bothersome pressure points, as most stock seats do.
Having options when you are on a long journey is a luxury. So rather than changing the seat out completely, which can cost a bundle and sometimes replace old issues with new ones, $160 later I had the Airhawk 2.
Some days are better than others and my mood can play into just how much comfort I need, so the adjustable levels and removable options are a bonus for me. It sits nicely on top of the existing seat. In researching this product prior to purchase I noticed it was already boasting great reviews, so I was confident. My only concern at the time was seat height. I’m on a factory-lowered unit and measure just under 5 foot 6 inches tall. Depending on the roads camber, this can put me on the balls of my feet or, at times, on my tip-toes. And with the added weight of my luggage, this can cause a sense of uneasiness and shift my confidence very quickly. Fortunately, I can honestly say that this is not an issue at all. The Airhawk is available for various types of bike seats, so you have the option to find one that is shaped best for you. The one that is made for the F650GS is perfect. Nice and narrow along the inside to hold the shape of the original seat thus keeping my feet on the ground. I keep it filled with literally no more than a puff or two of air. The company actually recommends it for the best results. The more you fill it the firmer the seat gets.
So with all of that said, 9000+ km and 6 weeks later have made me a firm believer. At one point we found ourselves caught out on a fairly long day. The weather and available towns made it hard to stop for any good length of time. We literally had a 5-10 min gas up break in the middle of a near 5-hour riding day and it wasn’t until 30min out from our destination that we both noticed next to no discomfort. We were shocked.
If there is one criticism I can make, it’s regarding the straps that are meant to secure the unit onto the seat. This could use a bit of adjusting. By the time I have them fully drawn they are still quite loose and just aren’t right. Once you’re on the bike it really doesn’t matter but I’m just sayin, since they are offering them with the product, seems a bit silly that something so simple is an issue at all.
From the manufacturer
AIRHAWK® Small Cruiser Seating System – $189
- Provides maximum comfort to most any street bike. Slap one of these on your lean, mean cruisin’ machine for the ride of your life!
- Seating system comes standard with cover, attachment loops, and cruiser straps.
- Cover Material: Stretch polyester material top cover. Side panels are 3-layer knit polyester providing air circulation. Fluid-proof, non-skid base is easy to clean and durable.
- Cushion Material: Neoprene rubber
- Cushion Cover Material: Polyester blend with a non-skid polyester and vinyl base.
- Dimensions: 18″ Deep x 12″ Wide (46cm x 30cm).
- 2-Year Limited Warranty on cushion
- 6 Month Limited Warranty on cushion cover
- How To Properly Inflate Your AIRHAWK Motorcycle Cushion
- Still not sure if this is the right size AIRHAWK cushion for your bike? Check out the AIRHAWK Motorcycle Seat Cushion Fit Chart.