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Old 07-17-2008, 11:03 AM
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Advice covering console with leather

I have a 2000 GMC truck with buckets & console and a back fold-down seat (extended cab).

Few years ago, I bought two leather interior kits on ebay for a really great price. Unfortunately, between the two, I didn't have the right cover for the front seat bottoms (there are many combinations of front/rear seat designs with/without power, with/without console, etc.)

A few weeks ago, I was about to toss it all out, but then I found a place that sells just the front seat bottoms for used car dealers to use when refreshing an interior for sale.

So, I'm about ready to do this. However, my center console must have been dyed by someone in the past (used truck) and the dye is peeling and the plastic underneath isn't exactly the same as the rest of the interior. I don't know if this is due to a factory color change resulting in using some '99 consoles in a '00 and dying to match, or someone along the line replaced it with the wrong one, or whatever. Option codes are for buckets with console. Doesn't really matter - I have what I have.

I'll have a bunch of extra leather if I take apart the seat pieces I can't use. So I thought I'd recover the console with the extra leather.

The console is in a couple of pieces, and I think I'm just going to cover each individually after trimming for clearance for the extra thickness.

Wondering if I should use adhesive over the whole surface, or just adhere the leather at the edges and let it "float" over the rest. Is it worth putting some thin foam underneath for a softer feel? I'll have some extra foam from the seat parts too.

Need advice on the best approach. I'm going to pull the seats to make them easier to install the new covers, so the console will come out very easy at that time.

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Old 07-17-2008, 11:27 AM
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This is not that easy of a job, unless the console is very simple, without a lot of tight corners, goofy angles, etc. Remember, you can only stretch leather or vinyl or ultraleather so much. At some point, you may need to cut the leather apart, shape it and re-sew it to make it fit right.
You are going to want to use high temp contact adhesive. You could, if you want to, glue the leather to the top of the console and pull the leather under the bottom without gluing the sides, but don't try to glue just the edges. If you do, the leather will slip when you try to stretch it tight.
Putting foam under the leather is O.K., especially if the coating on the console is peeling off. It will give you a better surface to work with. Make sure you get all the peeling off before you start gluing, 'cuz glue won't stick to it either. You might not want to use open cell (soft) foam unless you only put on a very thin layer. If you use a closed cell (hard) foam like Volara, make sure you scuff the smooth surfaces before gluing. If this was mine, I would clean all the peeling off and re-color it with SEM products. It would take a 10th of the time, and probably give you better results. That's just my opinion, however.
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Old 07-17-2008, 11:35 AM
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Thanks Dan,

I think the console is doable. Lots of curves but the sharper ones are largely broken up by the console being in sections.

Can you recommend a high-temp contact adhesive? Does the high-temp refer to how it is applied, or to what environment it can be exposed?
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Old 07-17-2008, 11:39 AM
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This is basically what I have from an ebay auction



I'm going to leave the back panel as is and I figured I'd seam it down the middle ahead of and behind the cupholder panel.
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Old 07-17-2008, 03:14 PM
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Yup, it's doable. The hinged armrest may prove to be a challenge. It doesn't need any padding under the leather, it will be fine without it. High temp contact adhesive will withstand high temperatures, like what happens inside your car in the summer. Some good choices are 3M 08090 Super trim adhesive(comes in an aerosol can), 3M top and trim adhesive, DAP Weldwood top and trim adhesive, and Performance high temp trim adhesive (comes in an aerosol can). The two in the middle would give you the best holding power. Both of them can be sprayed or brushed on. They come in bulk cans, I'm not sure if there is a container smaller than 1 gallon. The two spray cans would be the most economical. It's still a perfect candidate to re-color.
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Old 07-18-2008, 07:31 AM
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I would just recolor it as there are several parts that could use some touching up.

Is there a way to get exact match colors? I've seen SEM products (like Eastwood carries) but they just have a few generic shades. Is there someway to lookup the build codes or something and order an exact match?

Maybe go through a paint jobber?

I'd toyed with the thought of just buying one color and dying everything in the interior a slightly different shade (dash would be a pita), but then I'd need to find a matching leather dye to get the seats to match.
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Old 07-18-2008, 08:31 AM
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SEM Color Coat or Sure Coat can be used on hard plastic and vinyl, and can be mixed to match your colors exactly. SEM Sure coat and Classic Coat can be used to color leather. If you send these folks a piece of whatever color you want, they will match it and make you as much as you need. CLICK HERE Their phone number is 800-750-7939, and ask for Thad. He can tell you anything you need to know.
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Old 07-18-2008, 09:27 AM
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Dan,

I can't thank you enough for your assistance. You've been a huge help.

- Chris
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Old 07-18-2008, 10:56 AM
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You're welcome. Good luck with your project.
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