The name Bates has been a fixture in the motorcycle world since 1939. What started as a small operation out of Los Angeles providing warranty services grew into a world-renowned company and force in the motorcycle aftermarket industry.
Many of you from our generation will likely recognize Bates for their legendary seats, but the truth is, their reputation was built on much more. The history of Bates includes manufacturing almost any motorcycle accessory you can imagine from windshields to saddlebags and even apparel. In fact, leather racing suits made by Bates Leathers can still be found on many serious motorcycle racers to this day including the Vance & Hines NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle riders.
While we’re comparatively new to the industry, we’re approaching our 10th anniversary as a motorcycle parts and accessories company. Throughout the years we’ve been fortunate enough to do this, one of our favorite and most popular products have been and continues to be our seats for both Sportsters and rigid choppers.
And, although we’re proud of the seats we make, collaborating on an original seat with an institution as iconic as Bates Leathers was an opportunity we simply couldn’t pass up.
When our conversation began with Bates, we took a trip to their shop to see what the operation looks like today as we determined what a collaboration would look like between Bates Leathers and Prism Supply. We got to peruse through old catalogs, check out the old leather and foam that’s been used on Bates’ seats since the beginning and see the manufacturing process. They not only stitch every seam in house, but also hammer out each and every seat pan by hand using the original templates.
After taking a tour, it was easy to understand why the name Bates is such a stronghold in the industry. The hand-crafted quality the products have when they leave the Bates shop is something that can’t simply be reproduced by a factory or someone else.
So, we knew the only way to proceed with a collaboration would be if the Prism x Bates Solo Seat and P-Pad were 100% made by the Bates team in Long Beach using the original templates, material and decades of experience their team carries with them.
Because of that, we can proudly say that the Prism x Bates Solo Seat and P-Pad are completely authentic Bates. And, for folks like us who grew up hearing the Bates name and understanding the legendary status of the brand, well, that’s a pretty cool 10th anniversary present.