Thanks for the advice,
I live in LA, so the riding season is all year long - the only drawback is you have to deal with LA drivers who have to be the worst in the nation with their addiction to texting and driving....everywhere you look drivers heads are buried in their phones glancing up every now and then ....
I hear what you are saying about avoiding too much mods to new ride but I definitely need something for the seat support as I can't go very far without tailbone getting numb
Slayer - Will definitely check out the gel pads, those might be exactly what I need.
Thanks for the link!
The highway pegs sound good too but wouldn't that position put even more weight on your tailbone?
Dave - Those Cobra highway bars look like the ones in my pics, thanks - are those easy to install?
You're far from the first to criticize the stock seat. Mustang seats are pricey, but worth it. Whole different world of comfort IMHO.
No experience with gel pads, but I suspect they're more effective at curing numb-butt than back pain. A backrest can't hurt, but may not fix the problem. On my bike, the backrest is set to the furthest-back position. I'm not normally resting against it when riding; it's more an "occasionally stretch back, let the backrest take some weight, change up the position" aid.
Your arm and leg length matters too. I'm 6' and find my 1100 with Mustang seat offers a very comfortable position. Longer/Shorter arms and your lean/reach will be different. It may be that adjusting/changing the handlebars will be what matters. I know if my arms were a few inches shorter and I was having to lean forward/reach more for the bars, I'd likely be less comfortable.
As others here say, you'll not get back your investment on customizations, and you may not have this bike forever... If you can do free/cheap stuff like adjust bars, start with that. If it works, great. If not, THEN spend money.
As to the highway bars, I have and very much like them. Depending on how/where you ride, the ability to put your legs up on highway pegs might even fix your whole problem. I find that being able to move/modify my position is what really leads to best comfort.
As to the "crash bars" element... Companies certainly avoid using the term for liability purposes. And they're NOT some sort of free pass... However: although I've not laid a bike down in many, many years, when I did there were no bars and my knee is what got between the bike and the road. I'd probably not have titanium pins in my leg today if I'd had the bars.