Instant Moped Seat From Cushion




About: Tim Anderson is the author of the "Heirloom Technology" column in Make Magazine. He is co-founder of, manufacturers of "3D Printer" output devices. His detailed drawings of traditional Pacific...

Got a single-saddle-style moped and having trouble carrying passengers?
Here's how to make a tandem seat for a moped or motorcycle from any cushion that's roughly the right size and shape.

I got this armrest cushion from a boatyard dumpster.
I suspect the fabric is UV-resistant.

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Step 1: Before

Ryan's moped has a seat that leans back too far, and no place for a passenger.
You can do it, but it's uncomfortable and probably dangerous.

Remove the seat. Ride around on the moped like that.
Believe it or not it's already greatly improved!

Step 2: Cut Off the Protruding Seat Support

Now there's a spiky thing where the seat used to be.
Cut it off So it's about level with the remaining luggage rack.
Smooth off the remaining jagged burrs.

Step 3: Wooden Seat Base

Cut a board just a little smaller than the wide face of your cushion.
This one is 8"x27".
It's 3/4" poplar pretending to be birch.

Round the corners.
Round the edges.
That will make it less likely to bite holes in the cushion or you.

I used a tablesaw, beltsander, and router table with 1/2" diameter qarter-round bit, but a handsaw, knife, and sandpaper would work just as well.

If you can't find the right kind of cushion, it's easy to modify one if you have a sewing machine,
or you can just upholster your board as seen in other instructables.

Step 4: Mark and Drill Boltholes

Mark the locations of holes to bolt the board to your moped.
Whittle a skinny pencil to reach through existing holes in the luggage rack and mark your board.
Drill holes for the bolts.
I used 1/4" -20 thread per inch carriage bolts.

Step 5: Add Bolts

The bit I had handy was a little undersized, so i used a hammer to put the carriage bolts in the board.
These bolts are good because the wide head has a square nub to keep the bolt from turning.
Perfect for carriages in fact.

Step 6: Put the Board Inside the Cushion

This cushion made life easy by having a zipper.
I unzipped it.
pulled the foam block out.
Put the board in with the protruding bolts facing down.
poked the protruding bolts through the fabric.
Stuffed the foam block back in
zipped the cushion back up.

Step 7: Bolt and Enjoy!

I poked the protruding bolts through the holes in the luggage rack, put washers and nuts on them, and tightened them up.

Then I took a ride on my cushy new seat.


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    18 Discussions


    10 years ago on Introduction

    I likle the Hobbit. what do you think about Honda Esxpress? i'm buying one tonight for $250.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    my friend bought a honda hobbit too and its in mint condition for only 350 bucks.... it has no problems with it and runs great


    11 years ago on Introduction

    you could just get a bike that is built to carry two people. im pretty sure this is not only illegal to do but also illegal to use (ie two people on the moped) over here

    4 replies

    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    Where is that? In the U.S. states I've been in, laws or at least enforcement concerning mopeds let you do pretty much anything. Except ride them on some highways.

    Here in Indiana, any moped with an engine 50cc and under is considered a moped, and can be driven by a 15 year old with a state issued photo ID, etc. Anything over 50 cc is classified basically as a motorcycle, and those regulations apply. What's legal and what's enforced, however, is a different matter altogether.


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    I think 2fst4u is correct. It rings some sort of belle in my head. But truth be told, the cops would only bother you if you somehow bugged them. The only other time it would be relevant would be if there was a wreck. Then the lawyers would argue to split the level of accountability (which would work against someone who was not suppose to carry two people.) Otherwise, loved the instructable and I wouldn't hesitate to build this.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    YES!! i love mopeds, thats a great idea. where can you get a moped like the one shown for a good price, im always on the lookout...

    3 replies

    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    You could skip the moped bit and get something like a honda CG125, my friend has one and his 06 model was £750 with very little miles on it, there's just a bit more room and carrying capacity but you still get the advantages of a moped...


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    Well the advantages presumably depend on your local licensing laws- in the UK, for instance, a 16 year old could probably ride the moped pictured (I'll come back to this) but not a 125. However, carrying a pillion passenger is also illegal on a CBT provisional license, as is carrying a pillion passenger on a bike without rear footrests and an "adequate" rear seat. Carrying a pillion passenger on the bike pictured in the UK would be illegal for somewhere between 1 and 3 reasons. (It has no footrests, the seat may be considered inadequate and if the rider only has a provisional license then carrying any pillion passenger is illegal.) But, of course, I can't speak for the country you are in- just make sure you check before doing this.


    Reply 11 years ago on Introduction

    I'm in the UK, oddly. The good thing though is you can ride a 125 on a provisional and the minute you are fully licensed carry a pillion passenger but you still get low fuel consumption... being a pillion on a moped isn't great fun, those with the 'adequate' seat and pegs are still a moped, 50cc isn't much grunt for moving two people combined with the centrifugal clutch you will find yourself never getting anywhere and the clutch slips in and out at lower speeds...


    11 years ago on Introduction

    That is a very interesting modification to a moped. Looks very comfortable. It's a shame the old-style ones aren't more popular in the United States. Anyhow their small size, accessibility, and cost would make them a prime candidate for DiY modifications.


    11 years ago on Introduction

    Wow a moped! I haven't seen one of those in eons! Around here 25 years ago (before all the little 49cc honda scooters were introduced), kids had mopeds! Nice job making a longer seat, but I seem to remember those mopeds were very underpowered... is it even able to carry 2 people?


    11 years ago on Introduction

    Nice! Picture in step 2 is really cool looking. And by the way... as said in the first paragraph, how's it UV resistant? UV as in Ultra-Violet rays? (Learned last year I think...)