Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild - Page 2 - Chevelle Tech
Interiors Upholstery and soft trim

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post #16 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 17, 11:16 AM
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Scott
 
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Great thread. Love to see your handy work! I too had a pair that was a mouse hotel. Luckily it was one side and they turned out great! Also, good to note that just bc they are cores and need recovered, does not mean that the guts are good to go.

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post #17 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 17, 12:41 PM
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Anyone looking to buy a pair of unrestored bucket seats should ask to look at the bottom of the seat as well as the seat back frame with the Back cover removed, that will show if there was a Mouse hotel and at least most of the spring condition...
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post #18 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 17, 1:00 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cal Malibu View Post
Anyone looking to buy a pair of unrestored bucket seats should ask to look at the bottom of the seat as well as the seat back frame with the Back cover removed, that will show if there was a Mouse hotel and at least most of the spring condition...
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This should be lesson number one that can be taken from this thread.
It doesn't matter what the seat looks like on the outside- could be trashed or new & beautiful.. Its whats inside that counts, and often you can have "restored" seats with nice new covers over old nasty springs and frames... or vise versa- thrashed covers with MINT shiny steel underneath.

ALWAYS request that the seat back cover be removed so you can inspect.

GM did not paint their springs or frames so SOME minor surface corrosion is to be expected even on the best of seat cores- but when its bad like these were, be aware you are in for spring repairs and extra expense.
It doesn't mean you should avoid them- they can be fixed like these... but pay appropriately.

Its a rare treat to see shiny metal inside GM seats, and if you do its usually a sign of a great set.

Ben R.

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post #19 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 17, 6:21 PM
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Could you tell us what kind of wire you used for the edge wire? Any special type of wire and where can it be purchased from? The S springs I've seen on upholstery websites, heck out in the desert I've seen a broken down sofa I may have to cut up and harvest the springs from. Jim

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post #20 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 7th, 17, 9:53 PM
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Its Called "Edge Wire", you can find it here..
Edge Wire (Border Wire), Chalk, Upholstery Accessories, B.W. Clip, Coil Springs from Rochford Supply - Your Online Textile and Upholstery Superstore!

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post #21 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 8th, 17, 2:54 PM
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Thanks for sharing this information and pictures.
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post #22 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 17, 3:59 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Ok... I left off Both lowers cushions were complete, one upper cushion was about 80% complete, still needed to fab up the upper hoop... then both upper and lower hoops and spring repairs for the 2nd upper cushion.

Upper hoop fabbed:


New compared to old


And installed, a perfect fit!


Can't forget these little buggers... luckily i have a bunch of these made up as they are almost always broken, so just took it off the shelf to install..



And kabam.. Upper cushion done


I shot all 3 finished cushions with SEM Trim black this afternoon, and the 4th frame alone. Will hit the springs with paint when they are done.



I actually finished the last spring tonight as well... no pics, its the same as the other one!
I'll pick back up tomorrow night with padding install and buns.

Ben R.

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post #23 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 17, 8:11 AM
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Beautiful work. Hmmm....I wonder what my seats look like inside?

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post #24 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 17, 9:48 AM
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Ben....your "little bugger" picture. Most of the time the hole in the frame that those fit into is hogged out. So the wire slides in and out and makes funny clicking noises as it moves. I've had to either hammer the hole back to it's original shape, and in some cases, weld a small washer over the hole to prevent sliding.

You have any other suggestions for that problem?

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post #25 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 17, 10:17 AM
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

For those who don't want to buy all of the tools and springs to build and fix a spring base, you can buy them completed here..
1968-72 Seat Bottom Springs (each)

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post #26 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 17, 6:40 PM
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Excellent work Ben

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post #27 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 9th, 17, 7:00 PM
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

I bought my first set of 70 only camaro seats that way.
The second set,I asked him to peel back the fabric and showed him what his seats really were,lol.That foam rots them over the years.
I had two sets,one rotted uptop,and one rotted on the bottoms.Wound up cutting both sets up,and rewelding them,lol to get one good set.

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post #28 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 10th, 17, 2:33 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cal Malibu View Post
For those who don't want to buy all of the tools and springs to build and fix a spring base, you can buy them completed here..
1968-72 Seat Bottom Springs (each)
Very true...available at the dial of a phone and a cc number.
But consider if you will, these two things...

#1 Most a-body seats have no where near the amount of damage that these do.
Most seats have one of a couple common breaks that could easily be repaired with a couple pieces if you are savy enough to make them up or know someone who can.

See my attachment below for the most common spots that are broken in GM strato bucket seats.

#2 The reproduction springs are too stiff.
In every case that i have worked with reproduction springs, they wind up sitting way too high, even when combined with the good foam.

on more than one occasion i have repaired someones broken original springs they have previously had removed- then torn down their seats to remove the repop ones and reinstall the originals.

So in my experience, yes the reproductions are out there... If you have seats as bad as these, they might be warranted- but otherwise i wouldn't be too quick to buy them.

I will readily admit that I have a LOT of labor into these repairs.
If i was charging someone for the repairs i'm doing- it would likely be close to the ~$350 it would cost for 4 of the reproduction springs- That said I'll take the pepsi challenge with my repaired seat springs next to seats with the repop ones every day of the week.
;-)

But for those who are handy...

CS Osborne Spring Bender ~$50
Bending Paddles - Use two pairs of square head linemans pliers instead of buying them.
Spring clips - $20 for 200 clips
9ga edgewire - ~$15 for several pieces
zig zag Sprigns - ~$60

about 6 hours and patience.

Thats a heck of a lot less than $350 when you are on a budget and you already blew $350 buying your crappy seat cores ;-)

Anyway... Back to the build!
Attached Thumbnails
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Ben R.

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post #29 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 10th, 17, 2:43 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

So... We left off... Spring repairs are complete, springs and frames have been painted.
Time to reupholster these things.

The following steps are what -I- do when i recover GM seats. My goal is to recreate what GM did originally. In my mind GM did what they did for a reason, and so I have made templates from original padding and insulation pieces and try to do it as closely as i can to match.

There are many different ways to do this, and i'm not here to argue weather or not this stuff is necessary- Only to show that this is how I do it.

One more note on originality.... Yes, GM seats originally had music wire weaved through burlap. No i don't replicate that.
I feel the jute padding i use is stiff and firm enough to provide the same goal (spreading load across the center springs). If you are crazy enough to want it, there is a Pontiac Restoration place that sells it for a pretty hefty price tag.

anyway... Here we go:

Lower cushion spring insulation peices cut from jute pad:


Center front insulation:


From the bottom:


Side spring insulation:




insulation complete:


Butlap & jute padding complete:


Upper cushion gets the same treatment:


Note the jute is cut in a way to leave openings over the listing rods attached to the spring assembly under the burlap.

Ben R.

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post #30 of 92 (permalink) Old Jul 10th, 17, 2:47 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Worst Case scenario Bucket seat rebuild

Another little trick for anyone with seats as crappy as these (were)
Often the little tabs where the hogrings attach the covers are broken, or rusted clean off like many of these were.

Here is how i fix it without breaking out the welder.



I bend up some of my paper covered rods and insert them into the slot. with a sharp bend bent in them, they will not pull out. Just push them in and get them to fold flat. I use another peice of the rod to hold them in place until they get hogringed.



I have a similar trick for the lower cushions i'll show later when we get there.

Ben R.

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