Interior 1st Gen DIY: Remove the rear seat cover and recover it

Discussion in 'Tuning and Performance' started by Batrugger, Mar 14, 2010.

  1. Batrugger

    Batrugger New Member

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    #1 Batrugger, Mar 14, 2010
    Last edited: May 17, 2010
    The plastic backing on our seats have gotten pretty dinged up over the eight years of the cars life. Our friend Melissa (Wickedmin) covered hers awhile ago with fabric and inspired Kelli to do hers. We sat down and tried to tackle this, but I was having problems removing the rear cover. I called Melissa and found out that she covered hers without removing it. I searched and couldn't find the answer, but I didn't want to do this with out pulling the cover off. After a little head scratching and trying different thing, I finally figured it out and it was pretty easy to do. Since I couldn't find one, I did a DIY covering this:

    WARNING: Before you do this you need to realize that although you could always recover them in a different material, you will not be able to use them uncovered once you do this.

    Tools needed

    Socket with long extension and T-40 torx bit to remove the seat

    Thin flat screwdriver
    T-27 torx Screwdriver
    Dremel with cut off disc
    Heavy duty spray adhesive
    Three yards of fabric

    Remove the front seats. It is really easy, there are four T-40 torx bolts that need to be removed, two in front and two in back. Use a socket with a long extension and they are easy to get to. There are three plugs that need to be undone underneath the seat and then you can just lift it out.

    Remove this cover:

    IMG_8181.jpg

    Remove this screw with a T-27 torx

    IMG_8182.jpg

    Do the same on the other side and it looks like this:

    IMG_8185.jpg

    You need to work the cover over these tabs on both sides. Once the sides are loose it is pretty easy to remove if you know how it is attached. You need to grab the plastic cover at the top and pull it up and out and the top clips will come loose. The two middle clip just pull out and then you will be able to push it down and off of the bottow attachments. After it is off it looks like this:
    IMG_8178.jpg IMG_8171.jpg

    On mine the net on the back is attached with plastic rivets so go ahead and cut them off to remove it. I used a dremel:
    IMG_8186.jpg IMG_8179.jpg IMG_8180.jpg

    After the net was removed, we sanded down any rough spots since the fabric was thin and we weren't going to use any backing. We then washed them down with soap and water to get a good bond. Now it is time to get the fabric of your choice, some heavy duty spray adhesive and start covering. Here is what Kelli picked and those of you that know her, I'm sure it is no surprise:

    IMG_8195.jpg

    Because of the contours, I sprayed the whole back of the seat with glue and then sprayed the back of the fabric. Let it dry for a minute or two and then lay it on there how you want it. I worked it from the middle out until it was flat and smooth on the back. I then flipped it over, trimmed the excess, sprayed the back edges of the cover and the fabric that was being wrapped over and just worked it until it all looked good:

    IMG_8187.jpg

    I recovered pool tables for a few years and there really isn't a way to describe how I did the round parts at the bottom. It is just something that I learned from doing a lot of pockets and bumpers. I just went slow and made little cuts and lots of tucks until they looked like they do. I was really happy about how they came out. Next I had to get the net back on. I almost left it off, but I think it looks good with it on. Since the plastic rivets were cut off, I found some big short phillips head screws and reattached them. Unfortunately I made my only mistake here because the screws weren't short enough and two of them poked through the top of the net frame before I realized it. I used a few washers to make them shorter and screwed it on. I only used three since we never use the nets and there are no back seats:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Now as Mr Bentley always says, "Assembly is the reverse of dis-assembly." Start by sliding the cover from the bottom so that it hooks into the bottom connectors, push the two middle clips into the holes, and then lift up and push the two top connectors in. Pop the two sides on, re-install the adjuster handles, clip the carpet cover that hangs from the back under under the seat, plug in the three wires under the seat, bolt it into place with the four T-40 torx bolts, install the headrest, and it is done:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. BlimeyCabrio

    BlimeyCabrio Oscar Goldman of MINIs
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    Nicely Done!!!!

    I might have to do mine in the future. With slightly different fabric. ;)
     
  3. lotsie

    lotsie Club Coordinator

    May 5, 2009
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    Nice job:Thumbsup: I should do that, as the backs of my seats look like the bed of a heavily used 1/2 ton.

    Blimey, how about if you used a couple of Union Jack flags on yours.

    Mark
     
  4. ScottinBend

    ScottinBend Space Cowboy
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    This is just one of the reasons why I decided to get my Wet Okole seat covers........

    Great writeup!
     
  5. BlimeyCabrio

    BlimeyCabrio Oscar Goldman of MINIs
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    Nah - I'm going more subtle on the UJ theme these days.

    But Xiek did that with his door pockets and it turned out great!
     
  6. kelly girl

    kelly girl New Member

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    has nothing to do with my MINI :( -- but at least
    in a nuclear fallout bunker, complete with bottle
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    Okole = BUTT (hahahahah)
     
  7. ScottinBend

    ScottinBend Space Cowboy
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    :D:D

    I am surprised that this is the first time anyone has ever posted what that means.....LOL
     
  8. kelly girl

    kelly girl New Member

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    has nothing to do with my MINI :( -- but at least
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    my family is Hawaiian (i'm Haole) but Okole is my favorite word!!!
     
  9. goaljnky

    goaljnky New Member

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    From hence forth I dub thee Haole with Okole. :devil:
     
  10. ScottinBend

    ScottinBend Space Cowboy
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    :smilewinkgrin:
     
  11. kelly girl

    kelly girl New Member

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    has nothing to do with my MINI :( -- but at least
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    Haole Okoke = white butt:eek:ut:
     
  12. goaljnky

    goaljnky New Member

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    but, Haole with Okole = white with butt. A slightly different meaning if you get my ... meaning. :shocked:
     
  13. kelly girl

    kelly girl New Member

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    has nothing to do with my MINI :( -- but at least
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    oh! a haole with a nice okole?
     
  14. Batrugger

    Batrugger New Member

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    So how about those really cool recovered front seat backs and that awesome DIY :skep: :wink5:
     
  15. Metalman

    Metalman Well-Known Member
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    Back on track.:rolleyes5:
    Nice job on the seat backs. I especially like how you go into so much detail with your steps (on all your projects, like your VW transformation). Makes it easier to dive in a try it myself.:smile5:
     
  16. ScottinBend

    ScottinBend Space Cowboy
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    Butt we were talking about butt's !

    :cornut:
     
  17. irieman

    irieman New Member

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    That's a damn sweet mod Wes! Don't think I've ever seen it done before. (And now, you'll see it everywhere in about nine months.) ;)
     
  18. Wikedmini

    Wikedmini MINI of the Month - December 2009

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    WHoohoo!!!! they look great. I cant wait to rewrap mine again!
     
  19. kelly girl

    kelly girl New Member

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    has nothing to do with my MINI :( -- but at least
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    the butt of the recovered seats are lovely!!

    you're sooo helping me do mine..
     

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