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KLR KLR is offline
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Unhappy Stiff Leather Seat Care/Rejuvenation

I searched the archives, but didn't quite find the answer to my specific questions below. Any thoughts would be appreciated.

Background: I dropped off my seats at an upholsterer this morning to have the left side bolster on the seat cushion replaced and have some stitching repaired on the driver's seat. The upholsterer commented that the panel between the two bolsters (i.e., the center of the seat cushion) on both seats were "hard as rocks" and would likely "crack" sometime soon.

Key Questions: Should I use something other than Lexol to stave this off? Is there a "hide food" or rejuvenator that would be a better choice? How long might I have before this panel splits or cracks? He didn't offer to replace it while he has the seats apart, so I assume that it's good to go for a while at least.

Another Question: While I'm at it, the right side bolster on one of the seatbacks is showing some cracking and needs to be redyed. The rest of the seat (both seats, actually) is perfect. Does the color matched product from World Upholstery work well? Will have to redye the entire surface of the seatback or can I just do a fraction of the seatback and expect it to blend?

Again, any wisdom from ~40 years of taking care of 911 seats would be much appreciated!!

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Old 02-03-2004, 07:35 AM
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I have been using Lexol with good success. My seats have alwyas been in ok shape but my steering wheel had the leather in very rough condition. I used the lexol cleaner and then saturated with with Lerxol conditioner. I repeated the conditioner application every week for 3 weeks and the leather is now feels and looks great.
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Old 02-03-2004, 07:40 AM
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I'd use Lexol for maintenance.

For the tougher cases I'd use Leatherique Rejuvinator.... http://www.leatherique.com/services.htm
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Old 02-03-2004, 07:43 AM
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Reconditioning dried-out leather is a matter of doing it over and over and over again until the leather won't accept any more oil. I would suggest e-mailing Larry Reynolds, at www.carcareonline, and explaining exactly your situation and asking his advice. I know he likes the Lexol products best, and he might recommend that you first use some Lexol pH leather cleaner and then some Lexol Neatsfoot formula restorer. Lexol leather conditioner is fine for leather that's already in good shape, but it's not the ideal restorer.

Stephan
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Old 02-03-2004, 07:47 AM
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My experience with the Lexol Neatsfoot oil has been that it left a sticky residue on the seat which I didn't care for at all. Maybe the formulation is different nowadays. For sure Larry is the expert in this area.

Whatever is used I'd be conscious of how temperature affects the performance of the product....if you're doing in the garage or outside this time of the year.
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Old 02-03-2004, 08:07 AM
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the BMW guys swear by leatherique, connolly's, and some stuff out of pennsylvania called SOFFNER.

My buddy bruce says the SOFFNER stuff is God's gift to old leather.

sjd
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Old 02-03-2004, 08:09 AM
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I've had good experience with "Leatherique" (www.leatherique.com).

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Old 02-03-2004, 10:10 AM
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what that stuff the baseball player alway rub on their mitts? i saved a wasted mitt once with the stuff, i mean brought it back from the grave. desperate times, calls for desperate measures.

test on a small patch first...
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Old 02-03-2004, 10:14 AM
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I like lexol. I coat the seats, then slip a poly bag over them to slow evaporation. Let sit like this for a couple hours, preferably in the sun.

Repeat as required.
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Old 02-03-2004, 10:17 AM
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I like Lexol. Spray it on and use your hands to rub it in (I use a latex glove, as it will condition your hands too!).

I also tried Leatherique... and it worked well. I don't know if it is worth the money, but it goes pretty far and didn't leave any residue.
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Old 02-03-2004, 10:36 AM
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leather care

One of my friend had the same problem. He had a guy who work on the leather by applying the leather conditioner then wrap the seats with saran wraps and then used a hairdryer to "bake" in the conditioner. He sweared that his seats are very supple at this point. I haven't done this myself yet. Has anyone done this?

John
Old 02-03-2004, 10:50 AM
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Pretty similar to Chucks idea. Why bake the stuff in though? I'd rather have it do the slow soak.
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Old 02-03-2004, 11:09 AM
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I had great success with Leatherique Restorer and then as several have suggested put 'em in big bag with heat. I used an old boot heater I had around, mild heat but after two days in there the seats were much softer. An added benefit is that any stains or dirt also sort of rise out of the leather and when you use the cleaner it is amazing how much better the look (and fell!)
Richard
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Old 02-03-2004, 12:24 PM
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Leatherque performs miracles on old 911 interiors. It has restored my stiff leather - just one satisfied customer. Give them a call, thay are passionate and knowledgable about leather restoration.
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Old 02-03-2004, 02:06 PM
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Well since no one else has mentioned it, I use (per the local Porsche dealer) Hide Food, made in England, official goo of the Jag.

Been using it on my black seats, more often in summer when top is down. Never tried the saran wrap thing, my have to though.........
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Old 02-03-2004, 02:18 PM
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Check out
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Old 02-03-2004, 02:43 PM
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I have good results with the Lexol products
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Old 02-03-2004, 03:27 PM
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Hide food is connolly's...

lexol is a good way to keep your restored seats nice...leatherique, etc. will actually bring them back.

sjd
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Old 02-04-2004, 04:57 AM
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Follow Up:

I bought the leatherique rejuvenator and cleaner products. After one overnight soaking, there was a noticeable improvement. I'm now letting it settle in again over the weekend. After this, I'll probably give it another go in a couple of months when the weather warms up.

PS: The seats came back from the upholsterer looking great. If your seats are in fairly good shape but simply have a torn panel or some failing stitching, I'd highly recommend having them done. I paid $225 to have both bottom cushions removed, one resewn at a couple of seams, and had a leather panel replaced in the other one. Easily worth the $$$.

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Old 02-20-2004, 09:57 AM
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