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Supercharged03 09-17-2012 09:18 PM

Re-purpose leather
Does anyone have experience re-purposing leather from a couch to cover seats or interior panels in their car? Any concerns with such reuse? Does leather for auto interiors have to be new?

Someone in my area has a free leather loveseat on Craigslist. It has worn seat cushions and a rip from a dog. I am thinking about getting it and using the leather for my interior.

timothale 09-18-2012 06:29 AM

reuse leather
It depends on the condition, if it's stiff and not pliabble, probably not work. There has been some info posted a while back her on HR about the best method to clean and take care of leather . I don't know if you can bring back stiff leather, My wife and I haven't owned any horses for several years, but we still have our saddles, I try to use Neatsfoot oil every year, probably not the best for upholstery. My son picked up a couple free leather sofa's from CR to do the interior of his 22 dodge lakester, he wants the just out of the barn look.
good quality Furniture will have leather on the back, never sat on, and No vinyl used on sides or back.

DanTwoLakes 09-18-2012 07:32 AM

Yes, you could use the leather from the sofa to upholster your car seats. No, it doesn't have to be new to use it in a car. Be aware that most "leather" furniture does not have real leather on the outside arms or the outside back, that is usually just matching vinyl. The leather is only on the seating areas and the arms. The same is true of most production line leather car seats.

To do a pair of bucket seats, or one bench seat, you would need the equivalent of about one full cow hide, which is about 45 to 55 square feet of leather. That would be the same as 2 1/2 to 3 yards of fabric. It's extremely doubtful you could salvage enough useable leather from the biggest totally leather sofa to do an entire car interior.

Neatsfoot oil is not for use on upholstery leather.

Supercharged03 09-18-2012 12:06 PM

Thanks for the replies. I'll pick up the loveseat on my way home today.

Supercharged03 09-19-2012 08:58 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Dan was right, as always. I wish Dan would publish his stock market picks!

The loveseat was half leather and half vinyl, maybe 25 square feet of each. Here are a couple of photos. The straight edge in the photos is 48 inches long. I'll keep watching for more freebies on Craigslist.

timothale 09-19-2012 09:24 PM

I'M lucky.
The 2 free ones we got are 100% leather.

Supercharged03 09-23-2012 11:45 AM

Cigarette smoke
I picked up another sofa for $10. It had two small holes in one cushion. It did not have a noticeable odor when I picked it up, but I smelled cigarette smoke as I dismantled it. Now that I have removed all of the padding and have only the leather, I still smell smoke.

Can I get the smell out with cleaning, will it fade with time, or should I toss it into the trash?

timothale 09-23-2012 04:47 PM

ozone ?
After a house fire some of the restoration companies use an Ozone generator, but Ozone will speed up the deteriation of some materials. there might be some info in a house hold hints book , mabe on line ? I googled "how to remove smoke smell" and got several links, We do a lot of welding in the shop , I hope we don't stink up the sofa's ! try the gardenweb info.

Supercharged03 09-23-2012 07:29 PM


Originally Posted by timothale (Post 1593267)
I googled "how to remove smoke smell" and got several links

Thanks, Timothale. I found a mention on I'm trying the baking soda now. We'll see.

I can't believe I used to smoke. Glad I gave it up. Damon and Grace - hypnotists. Best $100 I ever spent. My wife frequently asks me, "Why do you sigh all of the time". The post-hypnotic suggestion was "Whenever you want a cigarette, take two deep breaths". I guess now one deep breath will do.

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