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1st Leatherique Experience - (not a how to)

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    1st Leatherique Experience - (not a how to)

    Recently I picked up a '86 325es with original paint and a near flawless body/engine. There was one problem though, the car's tan Houndstooth seats were shot.

    Initially I just wanted to buy some cheap sport seats to get me by until I could afford perfect condition ones for $$$ then decided to try and recondition/re-dye them since I planned on replacing them anyway.

    I picked ended up getting sport seats AND a rear ski seat from username "BAVARIAN IRON", he gave me a fair price and was a pleasure to work with. He's the one who actually recommended I re-finish the seats so thanks go to him!

    I was very surprised to find out how much a re-dye actually makes a difference. I've never worked with leather or car interiors at all and feel other people can have the same success with just being patient and having some time...

    I would not call myself a professional at all but for DYI seats I think they came out alright. I'm not sure if I should have sanded more, but again, the end product definitely works for me and for the money I paid I'm satisfied!

    For right now I only have the back seat done, I figured I'd do that 1st to get some experience then do the front seats once I was comfortable working with the Leatherique. Also, the front seats have a lot of cracking... I'll post pictures (good or bad outcome) once they're done... in case you were all wondering also I plan on re-dying or just buying new/used carpet.

    How I bought the rear seat:

    After letting them soak in Rejuvinator overnight then hitting them with Pristine Clean:

    A crack right before sanding...:

    After sanding with 400 grit and their prepping agent, crack improves a lot already:

    I did fill the crack but do not have pictures of that.

    After dying (nice view of my 4x12 guitar cab work bench!):

    Crack gone (denting in the seat seemed to relax a lot at this point, hopefully more with time):

    Also wanted to show the contrast on an "un-dyed" spot that wouldn't be seen when installed:

    Back seat how I bought the car:

    Back seat with re-done seats installed, and black Houndstooth panels installed as well:

    instagram: @tonerrrr
    High resolution E30 Fuse Box 300dpi PNG

    Looks good. How'd you apply, with a brush or a spray gun? How many coats?


      Originally posted by Mossman View Post
      Looks good. How'd you apply, with a brush or a spray gun? How many coats?
      Thanks! Should have put that in the post, at first I tried using those blue paper towels but that didn't work very well then moved to a Walmart rag. You can get several of them in a pack for cheap, regular white in the automotive cleaning section.

      I wrapped the towel around 2 or 3 of my fingers then tucked the excess towel in the top of my glove. That seemed to work best for me. I kept re-wetting the one spot on the towel I used to apply. In between a couple coats I also used a fresh towel to rub down the entire seat.

      Edit: I can't remember the exact number of coats but it was A LOT. I did have the dye cut with some water as I read somewhere it was better like this. I basically started at one end of the seat and by the time I got to the other end the 1st end was dry and ready for more. When the seat started to look more on the black side though not done, I took a half hour break, then probably 3 more coats after that it was done.
      Last edited by tonerrrr; 08-21-2011, 05:43 PM.

      instagram: @tonerrrr
      High resolution E30 Fuse Box 300dpi PNG


        That looks pretty damned nice from the photos. Have used their Rejuvenator Oil/Pristine Clean with great results for years, but never tried the dye.

        Sub'd to see the front seats.


          Do they have several unique colors or just the basics? (say cardinal red?). If they do this would be perfect for my rear seats. Awesome work btw.


            Damn that looks good. Now I have to choose whether or not to keep my houndstooth or go tan interior..

            1988 BMW 325 Super Eta - Elsa


            Sell Me Your SCHWARZ FENDERS!

            Originally posted by chadthestampede
            ^ Nothing you post makes any sense.


              Originally posted by JubJub View Post
              Do they have several unique colors or just the basics? (say cardinal red?).
              If you send them a small sample (i.e., from under the seat) they will match it.


                Thanks all! Yes for additional $ they will match your color.

                I got Kit #3

                So far I've used 30% of the Rejuvenator, 30% of the Cleaner, 20% of the Prepping Agent, and 10% or less of the actual dye. (Rough estimate)

                I'm not sure what's going to happen with the front seats as they're pretty beat up and also certain spots are cardboard... Pics soon.

       You can see here it's $30 more for a custom color.

                I'd email them about the color. I'm sure someone else has had BMW colors made so if not anything, you could save time and money on shipping the sample even if they charge you the same $30.

                instagram: @tonerrrr
                High resolution E30 Fuse Box 300dpi PNG


                  I've heard that it will start to flake/come off in small balls and work much worse in 6 months. I have yet to see long-term photo accounts, however. Please follow up in a few months as to how they're holding up. I'm interested in this for my daily.
                  '84 318i M10B18 147- Safari Beige
                  NA: 93whp/90ftlbs, MS2E w/ LC, 2-Step
                  Turbo: ?whp/?ftlbs, MS3x flex @ 17psi


                    Looks great! Keep us updated on how well the finish lasts over time.


                      I have not seen this or heard of it but will definitely look for it. I know my back seats will not get much wear due to the fact that a rarely have people sitting in the back, I think the real test will be the fronts which I have not started on yet.

                      I'll definitely keep everyone posted on the longevity of both. I believe that dying, just like painting is really dependent on how well one cleans and preps the surface. This is also true with tile installation and a lot of other things in general, prep is the key!

                      I managed to somehow get some of the black dye on my speaker cabinet (white vinyl) and was able to rub it right off (un-prepped surface, not even cleaned in... since I got it).. When I tried to do the same to the seat though nothing came off.

                      instagram: @tonerrrr
                      High resolution E30 Fuse Box 300dpi PNG


                        I just talked to a friend of mine that used this dye over three years ago and has had no fading or discoloration at all--even on the front seats. Granted, he just re-dyed them the same color and only puts maybe 5k on the car a year, but he also said it's all about following proper prep procedures.



                          The seat looks great.

                          Can't wait to see pix when the interior is done.


                            They look really good! I hope the colour stays with time and doesn't transfer too much


                              How's the smell? When your car is baking in the sun on a hot day with the windows up.. when you come back to your car, does it smell like ink?
                              My 1991 318is Progression Thread