Leather seat Replacement

Discussion in 'Cosmetic & Restoration' started by MAK, Mar 9, 2017.

  1. MAK

    MAK Well-Known Member

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    Hi
    While the seat n 85 CP are still in pretty good shape, time will come when they need to be recovered. Front only the back looks like no one has ever used them. Seats have been redyed and are being to fade a tad.
    Found 2 places here in the Shenandoah valley that will make them as original - but all leather and are pricy about $800 a seat installed - too rich for my blood

    anyone have any sources?
    upload_2017-3-9_13-22-22.png
     
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  2. ModelT1

    ModelT1 Still Lost in the 50's

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    That's probably a fair price. But they look real good at this time. Use a good leather conditioner and enjoy it.
     
  3. MAK

    MAK Well-Known Member

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    thanks ModelT
    but pictures are actually better than in person. You can tell that where the bottoms are stitched they are going to split.
    Have basically bathed them in conditioner to postpone the inevitable. It's not will they split, its when
    Just want to have plan
     
  4. Leadslead

    Leadslead Well-Known Member

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    Learn how to sew, get a Sailrite or an old Singer 15-91, some vinyl scraps to practice with, a vinyl foot for the sewing machine, upholstery thread, and a #16 or #18 needle... measure out the pieces of the seat where they're seamed together, add about another 3/4 of an inch on each seam... then either use upholstery vinyl which is what they use in car seats (none of it is actual leather unless you have an exotic car even then I'm not so sure they use actual leather) or go to a place like Tandy Leather or The Leather Factory (same place different name) and buy some real leather to use (they also have upholstery vinyl for a much better deal than fabric stores like Jo-Ann's)
    Now after all that don't think I'm being a smart ass, but all the time it takes to make a seat look just like that without a pattern (you have to copy whats there) and the investment in the machinery and materials (they claim real leather, double check that its REAL leather not vinyl, and real leather is expensive) and to get the dyes so the color matches as close as possible, and the guy has a shop so there's over head there, and he's got to eat, I'd say unless you take the time, effort, and pride to do it yourself, 800 a seat isn't too far off the mark for real leather seats.
    So unless you want to put forth the effort and accomplishment and pride that comes with doing it yourself, dealing with the nice looking seats you already have, finding others in better shape at a junkyard, or getting seat covers... that's around what you'll spend for custom seats with real leather.
    Now I will say this, like with everything sewing isn't that hard if you measure twice, cut once, and take your time and don't rush into things. I would try to build a pattern with paper, try sewing a dummy seat cover out of muslin so you can get the hang of it, and check it for fit and any adjustments you may need to make on the paper pattern, then practice with scrap vinyl until you get the feel for it, and have at it.
     
  5. ModelT1

    ModelT1 Still Lost in the 50's

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    Braggin. Back in the late 60's I bought a very low mileage 1926 Model T touring car. Low mileage but very weathered from spending it's life in a field in Lincoln, Nebraska. Low mileage because the first year water was used in the radiator rather than antifreeze. The right rear fender was cut off and the car became a stationary engine with a large hole in the block water jacket. The interior was bare rusty springs.
    I wanted to restore the T original.
    We went to Greenfiled Village, Detroit where the 26,000,000 millionth Model T was on display, never driven. This was also a 1926 touring. I took photos of the interior because magazine photos were never detailed enough.
    I bought an antique Singer sewing machine, heavy textured black vinyl, light weight canvas as a backer, foam, thread, etc. I knew nothing about sewing upholstery or even a button on a shirt. Like real leather, vinyl comes in many weights and grades.
    When finished I did a "how to" demo at our antique car club. Nearly everyone who saw my Model T touring thought it was a factory original type professional job. Unlike the horse hair padding, I used dense foam with trial and error. For door panels look around for left over carpet padding of different thicknesses and density.
    Since then I did several of my other cars. All of those are simple custom fake roll and pleated type which can be bought prepleated in different sizes. Using Marine grade vinyl I also did several boats. My singer was the old treadle foot type. I added the small electric motor from a yard sale sewing machine.

    As for leather going bad. I bought a used Dodge van with that exact maroon leather interior. It looked decent for a year. The Florida heat and sun soon had both front seat bottoms ripped and ragged. Large Smily Face beach towels looked great for a few molre years.:)

    We may not do a perfect upholstry job, paint job, or body work. But this is a hobby. Anyone can do it if you try!
     
  6. charli3

    charli3 New Member

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    I saw from another forum a guy used leatherique restoration products and the result was really good.
     

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