Seat Spring reconditioning/repair

(OddBrit) #1

My upholsterer called me over the Holiday and ask me to stop by the shop this morning and inspect my front seat spring assembly on the MK. IV. When he removed the covering to recondition he noticed a bunch of broken springs (mainly in the drivers seat.) Does anyone know where to find replacements or any vendors who might recondition these parts in the united States?

If I can’t find anything I’m thinking of making a plywood base to replace the metal spring unit and then building up foam starting with a very high density so you don’t sink into a bottomless hole when you sit down.

Thoughts? Ideas?

Thanks in advance, Jim Bolinger (Canton, OH, USA)

(Andrew Waugh) #2

I scavenged some springs out of a mattress when I rebuilt my S-Type seats.

If you google “automotive upholstery seat springs” you’ll find quite a few matches (I’m surprised your upholsterer doesn’t know of a supplier).

(OddBrit) #3

Great idea Andrew and I just happen to have one lying around. I think they are going to be heavier gauge than the wire in my seats but we will find out this weekend. I’m sure my upholster know of sources but he has a large back load of work and is looking for a quick solution. Now that I have a few ideas I’ll pick u the spring sections on Friday and recondition them for him over the weekend. That way he’s not be slowed down in his business.

Again thanks for the tip.

(Andrew Waugh) #4

She’ll notice if you take them all out of her side.

(Ed Nantes) #5

As a rule upholsterers think it’s a good job if the leather doesn’t have any wimkles, so they pump the base up with too much padding. We had a saloon come in ,MKIV, that had been reupholstered interstate, trouble was, even without the headlining in, our heads touchedthe inside of the roof panel. We had similar with and E Type retrimmed by another trimmer.

(tony) #6

If he is in that much of a hurry, and he is agreeable I would be inclined to take your seats back for a while, take the time to source and replace the broken springs yourself, then return it to him for the upholstery part. I believe I read on hear that certain bedsprings are similar to old car seats

(Ed Nantes) #7

Tony, that might be the drivein you are thinking of. : >)8

(Rob Reilly) #8

If nothing else works out, I have some tattered Mark V seats that could provide springs. But they are up in the rafters of my garage above my 120 and not accessible until I get it out in May. I am in Chicago.

(Geoff Allam) #9

Jim. One other source for springs would be the seats from pretty much any old american car or truck. Rear or passenger seats are usually the best bets as they get less use. I would expect that the springs from a car seat have a bit greater spring rate than mattress springs as they receive a more concentrated weight. Many auto wreckers have older models way off in the back.

(OddBrit) #10

Thanks Geoff. In my review of the seats in a couple of old America cars the spring gauge is significantly heavier than that in the Jag seats. Not sure how mixing and matching would go especially since they are intertwined in the seat.

I did come across and interesting U-tube video on repairing springs in a VW Beetle seats. The used aluminum wire cable crimp ferrules to but together the broken spring parts. I think this might be worth a try.

(Lovell) #11

Sort of surprised the upholster doesn’t have a source?

(Lovell) #12

Just a question here…

Does everybody think that upholstery shops have only suppliers of fabrics and hides and yet no place to source the metal hard parts like springs and the like?

(Rob Reilly) #13

Perhaps since modern cars don’t use them, the need doesn’t often come forth in their line of business.
But that never stopped people like us. :grin:
I had another look in my garage rafters, and I think I can get down the Mark V rear seat cushion without moving the XK120 underneath it, if you want me to try.

(OddBrit) #14

He has several sources of springs but nothing as light of gauge as those used in the Mark IV seats. Also the way they are inter twined for side support it would be hard to replace them without a major work to build a support system.

It appears my seat were in wet conditions at some point ans had rusted. Most of the points where the springs broke show significant thinning. I was able to piece most of them back together except for two springs which were missing a significant piece of the coil.

Stretch these and put end together but I’m sure they will not have the same support. Would like t find a couple replacement if possible.

Also found the round wire support structure to be broken in version locations. Sure this didn’t help spread the load over multiple springs like designed.