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Old 01-02-2011, 09:00 PM   #1
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Upholstery material

I see a lot of different material people are using for their seats and benches. But I was wondering where you are getting it? Would Jo-Ann fabrics have material that would work? I know some of you have upholstery shops do your work.

I'm thinking of doing what VONSLATT did and put foam on thin plywood and stapling the material to the bottom of the plywood. Then I was thinking of using velcro to attach the upholstery plywood to the seat frame plywood so it doesn't slide off while making a turn

What do you think?

Dan
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Old 01-02-2011, 10:43 PM   #2
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Re: Upholstery material

JoAnn and Hancock Fabrics both carry upholstery material. Lots of info on the internet on how to do upholstery. Bad thing about upholstery fabric is that it needs to be dry cleaned. Denim and painters canvas (drop cloth) can be machine washed and is usually cheaper. If you use Denim or Canvas, wash & dry it before cutting and sewing so that it will shrink. Bed sheets make good slip covers... cheap and machine washable.


Found a link that I was looking for. I came across this a few years back and had printed it off (I keep it with my "bus stuff"). It shows a simple seat that I believe you can expand and use as a bench seat. It is removable which means when it needs to, it can easily be recovered.The T-nuts in the plywood seat platform means that you can attach the seat so it doesn't slide off the chair/bench. I think you can use the same design to make padded seat back cushions. I haven't built a seat like this... yet. I plan on using the same basic principle to build a new seat & back in my old, decrepit, pre-1900's rocking chair that I have to modify to work in the bus.

http://www.finewoodworking.com/pages/w00147.asp
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Old 01-03-2011, 01:57 PM   #3
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Re: Upholstery material

Where can you find canvas? I'd like to do a few seats plus a canopy so need long or wide bolts.
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Old 01-03-2011, 02:18 PM   #4
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Re: Upholstery material

Anyplace (not walMart) that sells upholstery fabric. I'm pretty sure you can get the "Sunbrella" fabrics at Hancock Fabrics.

My canvas I bought from Lowes/home Depot (can't remember which). It's Painter's Canvas drop cloth. Softens up nicely when you wash it.
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Old 01-03-2011, 05:54 PM   #5
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Re: Upholstery material

Lorna, I looked at that link. It looks like the screws come up from under the seat frame and screw into the upholstery plywood? If thats the case. That would not work for me. Because I cannot get underneath my benches. Thats why I was thinking velcro. Unless someone has other ideas?

Smitty, I like that couch idea. I think I will look on Craigslist and see if I can find something.
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Old 01-03-2011, 06:34 PM   #6
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Re: Upholstery material

Quote:
Originally Posted by BUSBOZO
Lorna, I looked at that link. It looks like the screws come up from under the seat frame and screw into the upholstery plywood? If thats the case. That would not work for me. Because I cannot get underneath my benches...
That is how it works. Industrial strength Velcro may work. The alternative is to use straps.
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Old 01-04-2011, 07:38 PM   #7
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Re: Upholstery material

Thanks Lorna.
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Old 07-25-2018, 10:49 AM   #8
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Yardage for seat material?

Hello all!

I have been looking through all possible threads on re-upholstering bus seats. I want to do a couple seats to use as the seats for the dining table, kind of like a booth set up. I hate the rubbery stock brown seats so I found some nice upholstery fabric at Jo-Ann's fabric for a reasonable price. The only problem is I have no idea how many yards I would need, nor do I know how to measure said seats for possible yardage. Did anyone here recover their seats and know the estimated yardage on a standard size seat? If not, how about some instructions on how to measure? Y'all are so helpful here, I thank you in advance for any information!
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Old 07-25-2018, 11:35 AM   #9
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Take a seat, cut the seams, and then you have not only your size but your patterns. Am I missing something? If you know you're going to rereupholstering them it isn't going to matter much if you accidentally make a few errant cuts.
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Old 07-25-2018, 12:15 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Gypsy View Post
Hello all!

I have been looking through all possible threads on re-upholstering bus seats. I want to do a couple seats to use as the seats for the dining table, kind of like a booth set up. I hate the rubbery stock brown seats so I found some nice upholstery fabric at Jo-Ann's fabric for a reasonable price. The only problem is I have no idea how many yards I would need, nor do I know how to measure said seats for possible yardage. Did anyone here recover their seats and know the estimated yardage on a standard size seat? If not, how about some instructions on how to measure? Y'all are so helpful here, I thank you in advance for any information!
Material is usually sold in "bolts" that are 52" tall, a yard of fabric would be 52" x 36"
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Old 07-25-2018, 01:36 PM   #11
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I've had good success ordering material from Welcome, www.seattlefabrics.com, and even Amazon. The former two if you are looking for some of the more unique/outdoors type fabrics.

As far as measuring goes... my experience is that ordering a lot more than necessary is usually just barely enough. Particularly when the fabric has an orientation/pattern. Remember to include the additional material for seams. This is one of those things where doing it once or twice purely as a learning exercise, is worth the time. Get some super cheap on sale material for learning and then move up to the Italian leather.
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Old 07-25-2018, 02:42 PM   #12
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What Alf suggested is an easy way to get the best fitting upholstery. Depending on your sewing skill you can add piping to the seams for a more durable and attractive look.
If you are sewing challenged you can pull off the old vinyl and wrap the new fabric around the foam and staple it to the plywood seat bottom. (kind of like wrapping a package)

You also might add a layer of muslin between the fabric and the foam to increase comfort and durability.

I would not recommend a retail fabric store (or online). The upholstery fabric they sell is for home decor. You want auto upholstery fabric. It is designed to be cleaned installed and is fade proof. Home upholstery can fade in Phoenix in days and will sun rot fairly quickly. You can use sunbrella but it is fairly expensive and not as soft as auto fabric.
Look up 'upholstery fabric your town' and you should find a commercial fabric store that designers use, make sure they stock auto fabric. Standard width is 58" but there can be exceptions. Most shops that have been around a while have a closeout/remnant section. I picked up my fabric for $3 per yard and I'm sure you can do the same.
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Old 07-26-2018, 04:24 PM   #13
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Wow, why didn't I think of that? Duh, lol! That sounds simple enough for even me to do. Thank you!
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Old 07-26-2018, 04:26 PM   #14
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Thanks everyone for the help! These are all great ideas, I would have never come up with on my own. I was worried about using regular upholstery fabric because it is harder to clean, but it is cheaper I suppose. Will have to check around for auto upholstery fabric.
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Old 07-26-2018, 04:34 PM   #15
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I would also use cloth for those panels which the body uses directly; vinyl for the sides and back.
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Old 07-28-2018, 03:12 PM   #16
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Should have caught me before my 5 dump yard trips! I had 21 seats in good to fair condition bluebird blue and aircraft soft cushions bout 4 inches thick. But , alas, no one wanted em and I had nowhere to store them so loaded up and took to solid waste site.
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Old 06-14-2020, 01:04 PM   #17
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This is an old thread, but to save starting a new one....
My only question is what is the kind of the material people are recommending? I had looked at waterproofing some duck cloth, then I read that it stretches too much. I want a solid color, no prints, highly durable fabric for fulltiming with 2 big dogs. I know microfiber is recommended...I'll be honest, I'm more into natural fibers, but will buy a synthetic in the end if I have no other options.
Tried and true material types?
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