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Old 03-14-2005, 07:58 PM
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Seats

As some of the readers in here may know I am working on a 1990 ford mustang LX, Iam working on the interior, and am running into some trouble on the seats, it is something I want to do my self, I don't want to buy new seats or have someone else do the upholstery on it, so I was wondering if anyone new how to put new upholstery or leather on the seats. It will be a great help to me, and save me a lot of money. Thanks

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Old 03-15-2005, 08:00 PM
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50resto.com has kits to redo the seats. Their a little pricey at $400 but they do both front and back seats. Heres the link: 50resto
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Old 03-25-2005, 08:12 PM
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redoing seats

Having done upholstery for the past 24 yrs, unless you have a lot of patience, and an industrial sewing machine, sewing those kinds of seat covers will destroy a typical domestic machine.
The first thing to do is deside what color and type of fabric you want to use.
Carefully remove your old cover, which is held on by just a few clips and hog rings, as you will want to disassemble it for use as patterns.
While removing your covering, carefully note how it is attatched.
Once you have the seat cover removed, using a seam ripper, carefully cut the stitching holding the various panels together, and note the type of stitching used, whether the pieces are just sewn together with a single stitch, or as on some places, where the fabric is sewn together with what is improperly termed a baseball stitch. What is done at these joints, is that after the two pieces of fabric are sewn together, they are laid flat with the smaller piece of each one folded back away from the stitch. Anothe piece of fabric is laid down on this joint and sewn onto both fabrics, with the stitches being about 1/8th inch away from and parallel with the first stitch. You will want to copy this to make a nice clean looking interior.
You will want to get thread that will match your fabric in color. There is nothing looks tackier than to have mismatching stitching.
Back to disassembly. Once you have the panels separated, you will want to lay them out flat and get all the kinks and folds out of them, This is best done by tacking the fabric down to a piece of particle board or some medium of similar stiffness. Once you have your fabric properly laid out on the medium, a good day in some sunlight or a very warm room will help in restoring your fabric to its origional shape.
Once the fabric has returned to its origional flatness, use it as a pattern on your new fabric. carefully lay out your pieces, and fit them together on your new fabric like a jigsaw puzzle, as you want to be as economic as possible in the use of your fabric. with your new fabric face down and the old pieces face down on top of it, carefully draw around the outline of your pieces. I recommend pinning the pieces to your fabric, just outside the origional stitch lines, before drawing around them, as this will prevent or at least help prevent your pieces from sliding around on your new fabric, and causing erronious lines.
Once you have your pieces drawn, remove them, and on the backs of the new pieces, make a note to yourself where that piece went in relation to the other parts. Best to also make these notes on the old pieces as well.
You probably have welt cord on your seat, running between different panels.
The way to make this is to cut strips of your fabric, approximately 1 1/4 inch wide, and wrap around 1/8th-3/16ths welt cord, and sew on tightly with your machine. Industrial machines that have been used for doing upholtery will have what is called a welt foot on them, which has a channel in the foot to allow the welt cord to feed through without mashing it, making for a good tight stitch to hold the fabric to the welt foot. If you are going to need a longer strip than what you have available, then you will need to use more than one strip of fabric.
If you are using cloth, take the two strips, lay the ends down in an X, with the front sides of the fabric facing each other. Sew across the X, and when you pull the two strips out straight you will only have a slight seam showing.
With Vinyl, you only need to over lap the ends as you feed it through the sewing machine. To do this, be sure that the end of the new strip is folded around the welt cord and the tail end of the first strip is outside it, or the machine may want to ball the vinyl and roll it over. You can sew the two ends together as you would with cloth, however, this tends to leave you with an unsightly bump on your welt.
Carefully analysize how your pieces go together, and observe how the fabric of one piece relates itself to the other ones.
On your stitches, you will want to set your machine for 6-8 stitches per inch.
To get your fabrics, thread and what possible foam backing you will need, contact a good upholstery supply company such as National or Wynn and Graff. They can be found on the internet, and most have 800 numbers to call them.
If you have any questions, give me a shout.

Last edited by Max Keith; 03-25-2005 at 08:22 PM.
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Old 03-25-2005, 08:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Keith
Having done upholstery for the past 24 yrs, unless you have a lot of patience, and an industrial sewing machine, sewing those kinds of seat covers will destroy a typical domestic machine.
The first thing to do is deside what color and type of fabric you want to use.
Carefully remove your old cover, which is held on by just a few clips and hog rings, as you will want to disassemble it for use as patterns.
While removing your covering, carefully note how it is attatched.
Once you have the seat cover removed, using a seam ripper, carefully cut the stitching holding the various panels together, and note the type of stitching used, whether the pieces are just sewn together with a single stitch, or as on some places, where the fabric is sewn together with what is improperly termed a baseball stitch. What is done at these joints, is that after the two pieces of fabric are sewn together, they are laid flat with the smaller piece of each one folded back away from the stitch. Anothe piece of fabric is laid down on this joint and sewn onto both fabrics, with the stitches being about 1/8th inch away from and parallel with the first stitch. You will want to copy this to make a nice clean looking interior.
You will want to get thread that will match your fabric in color. There is nothing looks tackier than to have mismatching stitching.
Back to disassembly. Once you have the panels separated, you will want to lay them out flat and get all the kinks and folds out of them, This is best done by tacking the fabric down to a piece of particle board or some medium of similar stiffness. Once you have your fabric properly laid out on the medium, a good day in some sunlight or a very warm room will help in restoring your fabric to its origional shape.
Once the fabric has returned to its origional flatness, use it as a pattern on your new fabric. carefully lay out your pieces, and fit them together on your new fabric like a jigsaw puzzle, as you want to be as economic as possible in the use of your fabric. with your new fabric face down and the old pieces face down on top of it, carefully draw around the outline of your pieces. I recommend pinning the pieces to your fabric, just outside the origional stitch lines, before drawing around them, as this will prevent or at least help prevent your pieces from sliding around on your new fabric, and causing erronious lines.
Once you have your pieces drawn, remove them, and on the backs of the new pieces, make a note to yourself where that piece went in relation to the other parts. Best to also make these notes on the old pieces as well.
You probably have welt cord on your seat, running between different panels.
The way to make this is to cut strips of your fabric, approximately 1 1/4 inch wide, and wrap around 1/8th-3/16ths welt cord, and sew on tightly with your machine. Industrial machines that have been used for doing upholtery will have what is called a welt foot on them, which has a channel in the foot to allow the welt cord to feed through without mashing it, making for a good tight stitch to hold the fabric to the welt foot. If you are going to need a longer strip than what you have available, then you will need to use more than one strip of fabric.
If you are using cloth, take the two strips, lay the ends down in an X, with the front sides of the fabric facing each other. Sew across the X, and when you pull the two strips out straight you will only have a slight seam showing.
With Vinyl, you only need to over lap the ends as you feed it through the sewing machine. To do this, be sure that the end of the new strip is folded around the welt cord and the tail end of the first strip is outside it, or the machine may want to ball the vinyl and roll it over. You can sew the two ends together as you would with cloth, however, this tends to leave you with an unsightly bump on your welt.
Carefully analysize how your pieces go together, and observe how the fabric of one piece relates itself to the other ones.
On your stitches, you will want to set your machine for 6-8 stitches per inch.
To get your fabrics, thread and what possible foam backing you will need, contact a good upholstery supply company such as National or Wynn and Graff. They can be found on the internet, and most have 800 numbers to call them.
If you have any questions, give me a shout.


Or let somone else do it.
Just kidding. Lots of people sell covers you can install yourself but for $400 you should talk to a local uphostrey shop. I had the covers on my Corvette done for $450 and they look great.
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Old 04-06-2005, 06:26 PM
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I have an 87 lx vert that I did the seats in, they were my first ever and came out real good I think. however I marked the vinyl with marker on the back side and it bled through. you cant see it until up close, so I think I will redo them some time. if you can help me figure out how to post a picture, I could send some pics of them. the seat bottom is held to the frame with plastic clips which can be sewed on with an industrial sewing machine but the kits will have them on already....no measuring or marking, just throw them on. the top is held on with a zipper but both top and bottom also have listings and listing wires which must be hog ringed to the frame. for mine at least this is how it was. good luck help me out if you want some pics
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