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How would you treat this leather ??

Discussion in 'Technical Q&A' started by peajay, Jan 7, 2004.

  1. peajay

    peajay Formula Junior

    Apr 17, 2002
    454
    near Paris, France
    Full Name:
    Paul
    #1 peajay, Jan 7, 2004
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    My 87 328 has tan seats which are in original condition and since the car is now 16 years old, they need som TLC. They are in generally good shape but the driver seat has some distress in the most common place. I can't decide if it would be worthwhile using the re-coloring stuff that is available or just clean and feed it. What do you reckon ? would this treatment help reduce this distressed condition ? I am cautious about re-coloring products because I don't want to make it worse.
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  2. Mike C

    Mike C F1 Veteran
    Owner Lifetime Rossa

    Aug 3, 2002
    6,061
    Southeast USA
    Full Name:
    Mike Charness
    That's typical outer driver's side bolster wear. I'd suggest a conditioning and then a redye (or touchup dye). See the article at

    http://www.fca-se.org/conc_leather.htm

    for the full procedure that many FChat folks have used as a guideline. I'm sure George (LRPMAN) will jump in here, but you *may* need a very light coating of filler for where it's gone to suede, though probably not.

    From your stitching color, it looks to me like your seats have already been redyed at some point, and if it was done with a lacquer-based spray, you may want to go with the full Monty (strip and redye).

    Mike Charness
     
  3. Chiaro_Slag

    Chiaro_Slag F1 Veteran

    Oct 31, 2003
    7,731
    CA
    Full Name:
    Jerry
  4. Eric308gtsiqv

    Eric308gtsiqv Formula 3

    Nov 26, 2001
    1,952
    Orange Park, Florida
    Full Name:
    Eric Eiland
    Would concur with the others that a dye touch up may be in order...

    Luckily, you're bolster wear is rather minimal, as I've seen much worse -- including frayed / missing piping and leather on the 308 style seats.

    Mine were a little worse off than yours, and George with Leatherique recommended some touch up when he inspected them. He personally assisted me with the project (or I should say, I assisted him :)), and commented that once the whole process of prepping the leather is done and touch up begins, that I probably would not stop at just that, and would end up redyeing all the tan leather surfaces to make it all uniform.

    Firstly, I spent a good week or so giving the leather surfaces several treatments of Leatherique's Rejuvinator Oil, followed by a thorough cleaning with their Pristine Clean, wash down with warm water, and terry towel buff dry.

    Then we began prepping the leather by gently wiping the surfaces down with rubbing alcohol and old white cotton t-shirts to remove any dead dye. For the worn areas (like the ones shown in your picture), we lightly sanded those areas using fine grit paper dipped in rubbing alcohol. This allowed the dead dye to "roll off" the surfaces, and left a smooth finish. For deeply worn areas (like cuts, gouges, or deep creases), you may need to apply some of Leatherique's Crack Filler agent. In my situation, the Filler was not needed. Finally, we finished off this stage with a final wipe down of alcohol.

    Now the surfaces were ready for the new dye, which we applied using a combination of hobby airbrush, white cotton t-shirt strips dipped in dye, and foam wedges (like the kind women buy to apply makeup) for the corners, etc.

    Leatherique mixed the dye using a sample that I provided (in my case, the small button that covers the emergency window crank -- back side of the button was the original leather color). George was extremely helpful, and personally took time out of his busy schedule while he was in town to come over and show me the process hands on so as to get me started. He's a genuine car enthusiast through and through, and a true friend. I'm sure he'd be glad to explain the process and answer any questions you might have...give him a call...or he may chime in here.

    One note I might add -- we did the entire interior with everything still in the car. Strip and redye took approx. 2 days if I recall (start to finish), and (aside from the sore knees and back) it turned out well beyond my expectations. It's such an easy product to use, IMHO.

    Hope this helps...
     
  5. peajay

    peajay Formula Junior

    Apr 17, 2002
    454
    near Paris, France
    Full Name:
    Paul
    Mike it looks like your seats are the same tan color, did you strip all the leather including door panels etc. to get a good match or did the color supplied give a good match? I have seen a similar product to Leatherique sold in the UK that offers water based dye to give a color "wash" to cover over worn areas, I was thinking of trying that but I am reluctant to make reasonable seats much worse. You suggest that the stitching shouldn't be the same color as the seats because it is the same color, was the stitching usually a contrasting color ?
     

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