Harley's Hammock Touring Seat and Adjustable Detachable Backrest. The backrest angle can be changed with the lever (circled in red) mounted on the left side of the frame.
(1.)This is the stock Street Glide seat with optional sissy bar and matching passenger backrest.
(2.)Compared to the stock seat on the left the new Hammock seat is noticeably larger. Both the rider and passenger areas are wider and the padding is significantly thicker.
(3.)After removing the left saddlebag, side cover, and seat, the two stock nuts were removed from the bolts already in place in the fender. The nuts as well as the stock plastic washers would be reused later.
(4.)On the left is the backrest mounting base with adjustable gas spring, followed by the actuator handle with attached cable, and the remaining mounting hardware.
(5.)The base and mounting bracket were attached to the studs and holes already present in the frame.
(6.)The actuator handle and cable were bolted to the bracket that attaches to the frame under the rear of the fuel tank.
(7.)After numerous attempts to get the assembly mounted it became clear that the instructions were incorrect. So, off came the actuator/cable and it was flipped 180 degrees. The assembly bolted to a clip nut in the frame and the cable was routed rearward...
(8.)...before it was inserted into the mounting bracket. No tools were needed for this. This illustrates the backrest in its up position.
(9.)Additionally, a pull knob activated, five-position adjuster can move the backrest up and down 1 1/2 inches.
(10.)Pushing on the actuator lever moves the backrest forward.
(11.)Removing the backrest is accomplished by moving a lever (under index finger) and lifting off the backrest.
(12.)The new Hammock seat easily slid over the adjustable mounting unit and attached to the fender with a new H-D emblazoned screw.
(13.)Here's the new seat and backrest awaiting the saddlebag and side cover to be put back on.
(14.)To keep the seat feeling good while out on the highway, we purchased a nylon, water-resistant, Cordura rain cover that packs small in its own bag.
(15.)The rain cover simply slips over the seat, keeping it dry. Riding on a water soaked seat is never fun.
Over the past 10,000 miles I've gotten to know my '09 Street Glide pretty well. Although I have other bikes in the stable and ride those too, the FLHX is my go to bike. That's largely due to the H-D P & A parts I've been adding to make it fit my riding style. After many all day rides I was feeling I could do better in the seating department.
While the low profile stock saddle looks good and is definitely comfortable, after a few hundred miles I'd start getting uncomfortable. With the meat of the riding season coming up and Sturgis, I contacted H-D about a new seat. I went with the Harley Hammock Touring Seat with a built-in suspension integrated into the seat pan made from fibers that offer flexibility and durability. The fabric acts like a hammock, providing 2 inches of suspension above the seat pan, underneath 1 inch of foam. So many of my friends like a rider's backrest, so I got one of those too. The backrest attaches to an adjustable bracket that also works with many other H-D seats, including the OEM on my Glide. Good deal there.
Installation wasn't too difficult, but like previous parts from H-D, the instructions weren't very good and a bit confusing. Consulting the manual didn't help. After some trial and error, it still took under two hours-quicker if you don't take photos.
The difference is amazing using the new Hammock seat-it's like sitting on a waterbed versus a rock. It does raise me up in the saddle higher, but I am still able to flat-foot the bike, even with a 31-inch inseam. The backrest doesn't interfere with riding and makes it nice to just sit back and soak up the miles.
H-D# - Description - MSRP
53051-09, Harley Hammock Touring Seat, $499.95
52546-09, Street Glide Style Adjustable Backrest, $259.95
52596-09, Adjustable Rider Backrest Mounting Hardware Kit, $49.95
51676-97A. Detachable Seat Hardware Kit, $15.95
51639-97, Touring Seat Rain Cover, $29.95