Long-Term Indian Scout Reduced-Reach Seat and Foot Controls

We try Indian’s reduced-reach accessories for a custom-tailored riding position.

Indian Scout reduced reach seat and controls
Indian says that the Reduced Reach Seat positions the rider two inches forward from the stock location. If you’re 5-6 or shorter, you will definitely want to consider this accessory. At 5-9, I can go with either the stock or Reduced Reach seat but I prefer the additional padding of the latter. It's a comfort issue for me.Photo: Brian Hatano

WRIST: Brian Hatano
MSRP (2015): $11,299
MILES: 5,404
MPG: 44
MODS: Reduced Reach seat and foot controls
Update: 8

If you build or customize bikes (or just fabricate parts for them), you know how it starts. First you look at it, then you sit on it, then you ride it. If you’re lucky, you’ll love everything about it. If not, then the mental gears start to grind as you try to figure out exactly what it is that doesn’t feel or look right. In the end, modifying and customizing is all about changing what somebody else has invested a lot of time and effort into designing.

Once you decide to venture out of the factory-stock realm, everything becomes subjective. Changing the shape of a fender or tank, for example, might appeal to some owners, while the rest will think the bike is ruined. Changes to the ergonomics, particularly the seating position, are even more intensely personal.

Indian Scout reduced reach seat and controls
A side-by-side view of the stock seat and Reduced Reach option shows the increased padding that positions a shorter rider closer to the bars.Photo: Brian Hatano

As you know, the Indian Scout can be outfitted with a combination of extended- and reduced-reach handlebars, seats, and foot controls. Not only can you use these options to better adapt the bike to your body size, but you can also use them to change your riding posture and position. For me, the Scout has near-perfect cruiser ergos in terms of reach, but I really want to get away from the forward-control configuration. I mentally calculated that by bringing the foot controls back a couple inches with the reduced-reach option, and pushing myself forward with the reduced-reach seat, I could swap the bars out for a set with less pull-back and a lower, more aggressive angle.

Indian Scout reduced reach seat and controls
The Reduced Reach foot control kit consists of left and right offset brackets, four Allen bolts exactly like the bolts that hold the foot controls in place, and a new shifter rod. Shown here is the left-side bracket installed. The bracket attaches to the original foot control mounting point. Now the stock foot control can be bolted to the Reduced Reach bracket.Photo: Brian Hatano
Indian Scout reduced reach seat and controls
This view of the left-side Reduced Reach bracket shows the amount of offset that brings the peg position two inches to the rear.Photo: Brian Hatano

A set of custom-made floorboards or mid-controls would be ideal for my master plan, but I want to keep the mods cost-effective and doable for someone who might have similar goals for their Scout. So I decided to experiment with Indian's reduced-reach seat (indianmotorcycle.com; $250) and foot controls ($150) to see how close that setup would come to a mid-control configuration.

Indian Scout reduced reach seat and controls
Top view shows the right-side Reduced Reach control installed. According to Indian, the reduced-reach foot controls perch the rider's boots two inches rearward from the stock peg position. The extended controls are two inches forward from stock.Photo: Brian Hatano

I found the perfect handlebar for the transformation (more on the bar next month), which I installed to test the fit of the seat and foot controls. The reduced-reach seat puts more padding in the rear support area and pushed me forward just enough so that I could lean forward into a slightly more aggressive position. It’s a keeper (for now, at least).

Indian Scout reduced reach seat and controls
Reduced Reach foot control bracket and shifter rod in place.Photo: Brian Hatano

I’m on the fence about the reduced-reach foot controls. Although they brought my feet rearward to a more standard spot, they also set the perch slightly higher, making me feel a little cramped. It’s not uncomfortable though, so I’m going to give them a couple hundred miles before deciding whether to keep ’em or switch back to the original controls.