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  • Interior: Seat springs shifted

    I have a problem with my '48 Starlight coupe seat. The padding and cover are OK (well not all that good,) but the back row of springs under the driver's spine seems to have come loose at the top and have slid to the side. Is there a way to reposition these springs and tie them in place? Do I have to remove the seat covering and padding to do this? The material is intact but seems very fragile.

    Thanks, 73, Jim

  • #2
    Have you pulled the cushion?
    Reach under lower front edge and tug up. Should be able to completely remove cushion and examine spring configuration beneath. Re-situate springs with nylon wire ties. Broken springs? Missing burlap? Tell us more.
    Brad Johnson,
    SDC since 1975, ASC since 1990
    Pine Grove Mills, Pa.
    '33 Rockne 10, '51 Commander Starlight. '53 Commander Starlight
    '56 Sky Hawk in process

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    • #3
      rockne10
      I have had the seat out and can see that the springs are unbroken, but shifted to the side. My thought is to, from the bottom of the cushion, compress the coils and try to reposition them. I then would try to tie them in place with plastic wire ties. I really do not want to pull the covering off the seat as it is quite fragile. The burlap is intact between the spring frame and the cotton padding. It has been 60 years since I have done any seat work and I just like to have a bit of reassurance that I will be going the right direction.
      What must I do to replace the cotton padding between the spring covered burlap and the seat cover. Are there vendors that supply a foam pad that will replace the cotton?
      Last edited by 9echo; 07-30-2011, 07:36 PM.

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      • #4
        Foam padding is available, but at sewing shops. It comes 1, 2, 3 inch thickness, I used 3, probably should have used 2 inch foam. Using new seat covers, I stripped the seat down to the springs, arranged them as they needed, wire, plastic, etc., put new burlap on, new foam and new seat covers. Worked a charm. I had to, the raccoons had left me with a mess.

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        • #5
          If you leave the old foam and burlap you'll have a musty smell you can't get rid of. I'm recovering my seats now, and will be replacing all foam, burlap and cotton before installing the new covers.
          Dwight 54 Commander hardtop

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          • #6
            Thanks Dwight, I do not believe my '48 has any foam in the seats. I had not considered the musty smell, which with my burned out nose I can't detect.
            Going a step further, how does one recover the end caps on the seat back, you know, the ones on the outside edges? There must be a way to remove these so they can be recovered. I think I need to get a body parts book. The chassis parts book has some very good blown up drawing and I would think the body book would also.
            Thanks for your help.

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            • #7
              Jim,
              On my '54 the seat "L"s on the ends are screwed on, they get wrapped with the seat cover material and screwed back on. I think you're talking about the part that hides the edge of the seat back frame, behind the cushions. I'm taking pictures as I take things apart, when I get to that part I'll send them to you.
              Dwight 54 Commander hardtop

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              • #8
                Jim,
                I pulled the cushions off my front seat today. The L shaped end covers were screwed on. The backrest cushions were attatched with two tabs and screws at the bottom, two pins at the top. The covering around the edge of the frame was part of the back cover. It wraps around from the back covering of the frame. Hopefully the pictures are clearer than my discription. Don't know if your year is the same, but hope this helps.
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                Last edited by 1954khardtop; 08-01-2011, 04:38 PM.
                Dwight 54 Commander hardtop

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                • #9
                  While getting my seat cushions ready for reupholstery, I found the rear seat backrest springs rusted and broken. There was a HUGE mouse nest, filling the entire cushion. The little buggers went in from the trunk.
                  Two springs were broken, and several areas of the frame were rotted through. I bought some 1/4" rod and a bag of tie wraps. I put splints along the rusted out framing, attatching them with tie wraps. I cut snall pieces of 3/16 brake tubing, bent them to the arc of the broken springs. I slipped them over the ends of the breaks, and crimped them in place with vise grips.
                  Now I can drop them off at the upholterer tomorrow.
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                  Dwight 54 Commander hardtop

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                  • #10
                    Dwight, you know that is pretty ingenious. I think I need to check with JDP to see what he has in the line of materials to repair my seats. The front cushion has no rust or broken springs, just some of them have shifted. It is downright uncomfortable to drive with that back row of springs out of place.
                    Thanks for the photos. I will post mine when I get them taken.

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