XJ6 & XJ12 Series I, II & III 1968-1992

Restitching original seat leather

 
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Old 04-08-2019, 10:45 AM
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Default Restitching original seat leather

Has anyone restitched their seats in their Jaguar? (or any car for that matter?)

My seat leather is near perfect but the stitching has dried out and disintegrated (as noted in a recent publication on XJ's purchased...So this seems to be a common enough occurrence).

I have been softening the leather over the winter and it seems like just a matter of removing the seat cover and restitching. I have a few competent vendors in my area.

Thanks in advance!


-C
 
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Old 04-08-2019, 04:05 PM
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Yes, I have done this by hand but the results are not as good as a professional will do on a machine. Remove the clip and lift off the seat, flip it over and take it apart. When you have the cover off there is a thin piece of foam and thin cloth sewn in. I just pulled that off. You will need two curved needles and upholstery thread. I needed black and they had it at Tandy Leather shop. Upholstery thread is much thicker than what is used to sew clothes.

I used two pieces of thread and two needles simultaneously. In a criss-crossing fashion. It looked decent, certainly better than before but it is hard to maintain consistant tension on the thread throughout the operation. I would guess if you have the covers off an upholstery shop could do it quick and inexpensively.

Jeff
 
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Old 04-09-2019, 04:24 AM
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Jeff, I thought Tandy had ceased to exist?

Anyway I want to do the rear seat stitching myself but I cannot find the right thread and color.

Being that I can stitch leather properly all I need is the thread. I have the half-moon needles. My interior is the standard Biscuit..

how do they sell the thread? in spools?
 
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Old 04-09-2019, 06:02 AM
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Prior to me going for replacing the seat covers on my 85 Series 3, I experimented and restitched the ripped seam on the front seat squab using a regular sewing machine. The stitching came out good but the vinyl portion that is on the sides of the seat kept ripping when I tried to reinstall the seat cover. First pic shows the ripped seam. Second pic which is a picture of a picture from my phone shows the seam repaired. However, I forgot to adjust the length and tightness of the thread so the seam I stitched is tighter than the rest of the seams.That it could be done? Sure. Would I try again? Hell, NO. Like I said, I EXPERIMENTED.
Fortunately, my wife has a sewing machine that you can adjust the height of the foot depending on the thickness of the material being sewn.
Jo-Anns fabric carries needles that are color coded. For sewing leather, the needle is red, and the needle eye is a lot larger than a conventional needle.They also sell the thread. It is in the craft section.
The shine of the seat in the second pic is Leatherique's rejuvenator Oil.
 

Last edited by sanchez; 04-09-2019 at 06:05 AM. Reason: add info
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Old 04-09-2019, 07:41 AM
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Yes, Tandy Leather is still kicking. Fascinating store, everything from scarlet glove leather to rawhide. Their main market seems to be folks that make tooled western belts, saddles, etc. They also do a lot of business with kits to make custom gun holsters. Also those kits to make moccasins I remember from when I was a kid. Huge store and knowledgeable staff. Web site is www.tandyleather.com

Jeff
 
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Old 04-09-2019, 11:58 AM
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Decades ago, I bought a raggedy 56 VW. A small window, no less!!! Merely a used car with good mileage for my SOCAL commute. Busted transaxle!! Used two VW hjacks and swapped it out. Unsafee, oh yeah...

Parted seams in the front buckets. I removed the covers. easy!! Off to a local upholstery shop. good guy. VW used cotton thread. Not good CA sun. Used Rayon and in zio, sewed them neat and tight on his big pro sewing machine !!!

Borrowed a compressor and spray gun. Dark brown. Not pro level, for sure but looked much better than the faded beige!!

Lots of "monkeying" with the 36 HP flat four and it ran great. Put big screw driver in each tail pile and whacked a hole in the transverse muffler. the tips are lined. So, glass pack the easy way. Not racous, but not wimpy, Neat.

Carl
 
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Old 04-09-2019, 12:29 PM
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Jose, in Phoenix we can go to fabric depot. maybe they can ship or recommend a source.

http://fabricdepotaz.com/

geneo
 
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Old 04-09-2019, 06:07 PM
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Thanks Geneo, I'll check at Joann's Fabrics first where Sanchez said they have the thread.

Yellow Series 3, I still have a kit from Tandy for tooling leather, 1980.
 
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Old 04-10-2019, 12:33 PM
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Jose:

circa 51, I blew open my right hand with a Fourth of July "Cherry Bomb". Was a Cadet in ROTC summer camp. Plus dad retired army Top Kick. One way or another I was admtted to an army hospital. A skilled trauma surgeon fixed it. Long healing time then lots of Pt. Finger wrestling with a good looking GI nurse. And crafts. Leather tooling included. I took to it and did some after. One tool turned out to be a ten penny nail.

Moisten to soften then cut or punch.

Carl
 
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Old 04-10-2019, 02:04 PM
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yes Carl, I went to leather tooling classes when Tandy had stores in Tennessee. I enjoyed them.

was Tandy part of Radio Shack? Same owner I think. They were excellent businesses.
 
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Old 04-12-2019, 06:35 AM
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Jose, use shoemakers wax to hold the stitch to the tightness you want. When shoemakers are hand stitching, they use the wax for 2 reasons.
1. To waterproof the thread.
2. To prevent the thread from sliding back and loosening.
As per my shoemaker.............needle, thread and hole has to be the same size.
Stands to reason. If the thread you are using is thinner than the existing hole, it will always loosen up if you are hand stitching.
If machine stitching, thread size does not matter.
Yesterday, when I went to the upholsterer, he told me that the thread he sews with can be used as a fishing line for small fish. ???????
 
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Old 04-12-2019, 07:14 AM
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Sanchez I have a piece of the original thread and I will check at Joann to see if I can match it.
 
 
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