65 Chevelle Bucket Seat - Chevelle Tech
Interiors Upholstery and soft trim

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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 17th, 19, 10:11 PM Thread Starter
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Lou
 
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65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

I'm making an attempt to re-upholster my original front bucket seats. I started with the backs. First thing I did was slowly pull them apart taking a ton of photos on the way.

When I got to the top of the foam I found a cotton pad. It's about 1" thick wrapped in what looks like cheese cloth. Not muslin or maybe muslin with a very open grid like cheese cloth. This padding is between the foam and the underside of the vinyl.

It is a wrap that has cheese cloth all around that is encapsulating the cotton. This was over the top of the foam on both seats. It seems to have been lightly glued to the foam. There was a mild stickiness when I peeled it from the foam.

I've been studying videos on the net and have not found anyone doing this in their steps.

Is this padding necessary. I can fabricate it if required , but since no one seems to be doing that I thought I'd ask.

Thanks

Lou
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 18th, 19, 8:26 AM
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

The factory installed that padding to eliminate/reduce wrinkling, especially where the seat cover wraps over the top. A little extra "fluff" to fill it out. I always install that extra cotton padding when restoring a set of bucket seats because that's the way the factory did it.

I think a lot of guys don't install it because it is never included with new foam or new covers. You have to purchase the cotton separately or re-use the original padding, which is usually not in the best condition.

It's a little extra work, but makes for a much nicer looking and proper restoration when done.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 18th, 19, 8:44 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by augy View Post
The factory installed that padding to eliminate/reduce wrinkling, especially where the seat cover wraps over the top. A little extra "fluff" to fill it out. I always install that extra cotton padding when restoring a set of bucket seats because that's the way the factory did it.

I think a lot of guys don't install it because it is never included with new foam or new covers. You have to purchase the cotton separately or re-use the original padding, which is usually not in the best condition.

It's a little extra work, but makes for a much nicer looking and proper restoration when done.
Okay, thanks. What do you think of the state of this stuffing. Do you think I could re-use it or should I make up some new. I'm thinking once I wrap the new it will end up like this one. One thing that PUI say's on their instructions is that they don't supply the additional cotton that the originals had and for it to be done correctly you need that cotton. I found a bale of it which is on it's way. It was cheaper to buy the bale than buying by the yard.
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 19th, 19, 8:16 AM
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

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Originally Posted by 1943MB View Post
Okay, thanks. What do you think of the state of this stuffing. Do you think I could re-use it or should I make up some new.
I would install all new padding. You have a very good pattern for new padding from the original that you took out. The other reason for new padding is most original padding gets an "old" smell to it, and you don't want that odor coming through your nice new seat covers.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 20th, 19, 12:54 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

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Originally Posted by augy View Post
I would install all new padding. You have a very good pattern for new padding from the original that you took out. The other reason for new padding is most original padding gets an "old" smell to it, and you don't want that odor coming through your nice new seat covers.
Yes, I'll make new padding suits. The cotton arrived and it's great. Smells so fresh and clean. Your right, the old stuff stinks compared to the new. Here's my progress on the driver side bucket seat back. I don't think the seats were re-arranged during the life of the car but apparently there's a left and a right seat back. The driver side on mine had an extra spring rod that re-inforced the door side frame when driver got in and out. This frame was where the passenger goes. An odd thing was that I needed to work those springs on that driver seat corner to get them back . They were slightly more compressed. Or they left out the reinforcing spring rod on the passenger side. Another thing I had to make right was the topside burlap panel with two listing wires. When it's installed it compresses the seat back at the top. Might make putting the covers on easier. Takes some of the stress off the stitching in the vinyl I'm supposing. Not something you want to leave out since the frame has built in legs for the hog rings to attach to. Doesn't sound whimsical in design. Now I need to build the padding suit. I'll post the finished product.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 19, 3:39 PM Thread Starter
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

Here's a follow up to the thread. I made the cotton suit and tried installing the vinyl and it was too tight. Would not go on. As a matter of fact I ripped a seam and had to have it repaired so I gave up on that. I also found a video of a guy doing some 65 GTO seats which helped out a lot. Some things that other people do you can adapt and some you can leave out and try something else. More than one way to skin a cat.

So here's my completed driver side seat back. Some tweaking here and there but basically it's done. Haven't used a heat gun on it yet but it's pretty wrinkle free. Some pressing and petting will round it out. Not bad for a first if I should say so myself. Taint easy that's for sure but you can save a ton of money doing it yourself if you dare. Giving credit where credit is due the uphostery guys do deserve the money they get for doing this.

Lou
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 19, 4:14 PM
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64/65s upper cushions are really hard to do. I've had one start ripping on me and had to perform a repair that luckily was mostly hidden my the side spear trim.

I've learned that you have to compress the absolute hell out of them before you try and pull that cover over. I use zip ties on the inside to pull the springs down to the frame.
Once I pull the top of the cover over and the stress is off those side seams then I'll reach inside and cut off the zip ties.

Even with doing that it can still be tricky. Process.

Anyway- it looks good now!
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 19, 4:40 PM
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

Nice job!
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 25th, 19, 6:59 PM
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

So far, looks really good. They are tough to do.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 27th, 19, 8:48 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

Hi,

Thanks, glad to see other's have been there and done that and agreed it's not easy. Yep, that's where it ripped on me. At the top of the side seam that is eventually covered by the chrome trim. Not meaning to bash PUI since I'm not sure if all these kits come from the same source but that reinforcing at the top is pathetic. Those things ripped right down the middle, both sides. At least they could use some heavy duty material in those inside corners that take so much stress. I asked the guy at the uphostery shop to sew in some leather but he opted for some vinyl. Seems to have worked on this one. As soon as I had it set I put a hog ring at the top to help relieve the stress.


It's really critical, IMHO , to set that cover and lock down the two side listing wire's before pulling it up and over the top edge. Always pressing down those springs is a must. Top back edge should line up with the back of the frame top edge. Tricky to set right since the foam at the top is raised up. These foam covers have no reference point in regards to the frame. Roll the foam over the top so that the foam edge is butting up againt the back edge of the frame was the best I could come up with. Like the originals.

I would have used the zip ties but I used cotton and not foam and the muslin rolls over the frame and you have no way to attach the zip ties. I'm waiting for some of that dry silicon spray to see if that makes it a bit easier when sprayed on the foam.

I'm also looking into smaller spring wire (music wire) for listing wire. The originals used 1/16" with thick paper. I used 3/32 spring wire and it's a bear to bend. Also tough to cut with a pair of wire cutters. Now I'm looking into 1/16" spring wire pushed through some small tubing. Just an idea.

The interesting thing is that even though I got one right I'm still apprehensive about all the other pieces. Not like you have it down doing one. More like a feeling of rolling dice.

Right now I'm looking at ways to fix a broken piece of spring wire. I see they make various ferrules to wrap or splice in new wire. This is a bad one cause it's the perimeter wire and goes all the way from one side to the other. I'll show a shot of the fix, if it works. Nothing like trial and error.


Lou
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 27th, 19, 9:52 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

My edit option did not come up so I'm posting again.

Here's a picture of the broken piece of frame I have. It does not run all the way from side to side as I thought.
The yellow line shows how far it goes. Fastened in with those BW type C- clips. Just wondering if anyone has one that's from the left side of a bottom bucket seat like these they'd like to sell me. I'm thinking any 65 A frame would be the same. Arrow points to place it broke.

Thanks
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old May 13th, 19, 11:27 AM Thread Starter
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

Hi,

Here's my latest and final installment on the Re-upholstery shinanigans. After I ripped that one cover I wrote to NPD and asked them for a cost on a new seat back. Those guys were nice enough to offer to try and get me one for free since my warrenty was apparently still good. Would you believe PUI sent me a complete set of tops and bottoms for the two bucket seats for free and sent them directly to my house in about three days. I couldn't believe it. Anyway, with so many covers to fool with I had no doubt I'd end up with four pieces that would pass muster. One thing I'd like to say. The American Custom foam cushions that were provided were so thick that I did not require any cotton anywhere. I compared them to the originals and although the originals were compressed over the many years of use I don't think they were as thick as the new ones I used when they were new. There is also another brand out there that looks more like the originals and might require the cotton on the bottom and the top if you used those. I'm not saying that you should not use the cotton, but from my experience I did not need it. So onto the the rear bench seat , which is supposed to be easier than the fronts . Now I need to get ready for sticker shock when I ask how much to re-chrome those side trim pieces . O'yeah, I found some great listing wire from Wholesale Upholstery Supply. Exactly like the original paper coated wire. 20 ft. of wire. Their out of Utah.

Gett'n there
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old May 13th, 19, 12:53 PM
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

Very nice work. Looks very good.


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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old May 13th, 19, 1:41 PM
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

Looks great!
I have had issues with PUI covers(as well as the other mfgs), but never with PUI's customer service- it is top notch, and this just reinforces that.
Glad they took care of you.

I'm curious... Did the seat buns you used have the words "American Cushion Industries" painted on the foam seating surfaces or were they plain foam w/o no name on them?

I ask because your comments don't sound like ACI buns... There have been one or two other people pop up in recent past who also complained about ACI buns being too thick... I suspect a reselling vendor is claiming ACI buns (at ACI prices) and are substituting the cheaper off shore buns which ARE noticeably thicker and stiffer than original, so much that they are harder to work with, much less to sit on.

Which vendor did you order the buns from?

Ben R.

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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old May 13th, 19, 4:11 PM Thread Starter
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Lou
 
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Re: 65 Chevelle Bucket Seat

Quote:
Originally Posted by RAMBO View Post
Looks great!
I have had issues with PUI covers(as well as the other mfgs), but never with PUI's customer service- it is top notch, and this just reinforces that.
Glad they took care of you.

I'm curious... Did the seat buns you used have the words "American Cushion Industries" painted on the foam seating surfaces or were they plain foam w/o no name on them?

I ask because your comments don't sound like ACI buns... There have been one or two other people pop up in recent past who also complained about ACI buns being too thick... I suspect a reselling vendor is claiming ACI buns (at ACI prices) and are substituting the cheaper off shore buns which ARE noticeably thicker and stiffer than original, so much that they are harder to work with, much less to sit on.

Which vendor did you order the buns from?


Hi,

Thanks, maybe not perfect but close enough for me. I purchased the buns from NPD as well as the covers. The foam was from American Cushion Industries. I think I got the name wrong , anyway those are the guys. I have enclosed some photos of the differences between the original buns and ACI. I stretched that bottom about three or four times since I had those extras to mess with. The final decision was just pull it down and over and not get hung up trying to jamb more foam into the front to take out wrinkles. Just pull it all out when you attach the bottom. The magic of Vinyl. As far as them being bogus buns I couldn't say. They did work so can't say for sure. Don't look very much like originals but all ACI bun kits for 65 Chevelle's look like this. I'm not complaining.

Lou
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