ThunderPress East

EAST APRIL 2018

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23 www.thunderpress.net THUNDER PRESS April 2018 Reviewed by Robert Filla A few years back I reached out to Mike Enzwiler, the owner of Pro Pad, for some assistance in smoothing out the ride on my rigid bobber. I ended up selecting the company's Large Sheepskin Gel Pad. It has performed fl awlessly since then for thousands of miles. But that sheepskin does tend to get a little warm during a hot Texas summer. In my search for a pad more fi tting for 100-degree riding, Cool operator this time around Enzwiler suggested their SuprCruz Tech Series. And once again I am enjoying a severe case of happy butt. I opted for the SuprCruz model this go-around for two reasons. First, I recently exchanged the cut- down chopper seat on my rigid for a pogo-stick setup with a tractor- style Harley seat, meaning I had more square inches of surface that could use padding. Second, I've a two-week trip coming up this spring on my Road King. Covering approximately 3,500 miles explor- ing the Utah 5, I figured the cushion provided by the larger SuprCruz gel pad would be ideal even though the Road King has an excellent aftermarket rear suspension. And talk about an increase in size; the SuprCruz was specifically designed for touring bikes and, while it maintains the same width as the large model (16"), it stretches out to a whopping 17" in overall length compared to a modest 12" for the large version. But the SuprCruz Tech Series goes well beyond dimensional increases. The heart of the Pro Pad is the polymer core. Measuring ½" thick, this is a visco-elastic plastic that was originally developed for use in the medical industry for operating room tables and wheelchairs, adopted by Nascar racing teams and then, refor- mulated for use by Pro Pad. A stable solid that will not harden with age, it distributes weight evenly while reduc- ing shock and vibration, extending the riding experience. The Tech Series goes further by utilizing a unique perforated micro spacer top fabric that not only provides a neutral seat- ing surface but also allows air to fl ow under the rider, reducing hot spots between rider and seat. An integrated non-skid, silicone-free bottom panel insures a stable connection whether using the attachment straps or not and leaves no fi lm or residue. But then, then it gets a little weird. That ½" thick polymer gel core I talked about earlier? Pro Pad went to the next level since when I purchased my fi rst gel pad and adopted an age- old design from fl at track racers of 100 years ago—designing a cutout in the center at the very rear of the poly- mer insert that reduces centralized pressure on your tailbone, kinda like a scooped-out area for your nether regions. It feels strange at fi rst but it works exactly as engineered. This feature is now standard on all models and sizes. The SuprCruz Tech comes with an elastic front loop strap that hooks over the nose of your seat and twin adjustable side straps with vinyl- coated half-moon clips and locking tabs for removing the side straps from the seat. Unfortunately the front strap is totally useless on the Road King unless I loosen the seat enough to slide the strap between gas tank and seat. But that non-skid bottom is so stable that the front strap is not missed. (Pro Pad Top Pads are designed for universal fi tment and are not model specifi c.) And the dif- ference between the ventilated Tech Series and its furry sheepskin cousin is drastic—one ideal for winter and the other perfect for those steamy summer rides. As far as the comfort level, they appear to be equal since they have identical construction with the only difference being the top cover and the additional length, both factors increasing my saddle time. The simple addition of a Pro Pad can easily add 100–200 miles to your daily riding at a fraction of the cost of a custom aftermarket seat. Made in the U.S., this gel pad comes with a two-year manufacturer's replace- ment warranty. In addition to the Tech Series and Sheepskin, there is also a leather top pad and a diamond- quilted design. Plus, pillion pads are also available so you never have to listen to an uncomfortable passenger who is jealous of the rider in front—a smooth move for two. 4 Go to thunderpress.net to see even more of your favorite biker news SuprCruz Tech Series Gel Pad Pro Pad Inc. #6604 Micro Space $119.95 www.thepropad.com 800.403.2714

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