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1989 300SE 240k miles
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello All,

This regards my 1989 300SE with 239k miles. A while back I posted pictures of my front seats. One of the comments stated I should expect my lower driver’s seat to tear within 6 months given its condition. I’m well past that time. And I’m now concerned about a potential tear. So I’d like to proactively take care of this issue.

My preference is to keep my original leather. Thus I’m considering a leather repair kit. In this case, based on all I’ve read in BW as to their quality, I’d like to go with leatherique. So, given what can be seen in the pictures below, will leatherique, with its filler, be able to repair my seat bottoms and add years of longevity? Or are the repairs too superficial to stop the wear?

Driver’s
2703127


Passenger’s
2703128
 

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1977 450 SEL 6.9
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870 Posts
Leatherique is good stuff. I would start with the Rejuvenator but follow the instructions to a t. Best if you can park the car in heavy sun for a day so it can really bake in. Then Pristine Clean, rinse repeat. Only then can you assess the true extent of the cracks.
 

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Definitely do the rejuvenator and prestine clean as you’ll need to do that before filling cracks anyway . I think with filling the edge cracks those could be saved around the outside , but that perforated section will eventually rip and you can’t fill cracks on perforated holes
 

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1982 MERCEDES 280SE AUSTRALIAN DELIVERED RHD
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189 Posts
There care some good youtubes on leather seat repair, but be warned, it's a time consuming/labour intensive job, and colour match is imperative.

I'd plump for professional recovering as most long-lasting & economic option.
 

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1989 300SE 240k miles
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2,916 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Leatherique is good stuff. I would start with the Rejuvenator but follow the instructions to a t. Best if you can park the car in heavy sun for a day so it can really bake in. Then Pristine Clean, rinse repeat. Only then can you assess the true extent of the cracks.
My apologies. Leatherique rejuvenator and cleaner are a part of the process. It never occurred to me to mention them separately. I plan to do that. But I about guarantee I’ll still need filler. And, if people think it’ll work on the seats here, I was going try to repair my armrest as well. It will definitely need filler even after the rejuvenator and cleaner. Thanks.
Definitely do the rejuvenator and prestine clean as you’ll need to do that before filling cracks anyway . I think with filling the edge cracks those could be saved around the outside , but that perforated section will eventually rip and you can’t fill cracks on perforated holes
I’ll look closer, but I don’t see anything in the perforation(s) that I’m worried about tearing. Also, I need to double check, but I thought the bottoms’ leathers were interchangeable right and left. I was going to swap them. As I almost never have passengers. That’ll reduce usage wear immensely. Thanks.
There care some good youtubes on leather seat repair, but be warned, it's a time consuming/labour intensive job, and colour match is imperative.

I'd plump for professional recovering as most long-lasting & economic option.
Time consuming labor intensive…I hand stitched the replacement soft-top windows in both my r129’s. I just finished replacing the w126 expansion valve. I like time consuming labor intensive jobs. They’re kind of why I own my car 😉

Replacing the leather isn’t difficult. I already replaced the driver’s top leather. But used bottoms are insanely priced now. And new GAHH is ~$1800 USD. And while $800 for LSeats is far more palatable, I still keep reminding myself I paid $400 for my car. So if I can repair both front seat bottoms and my armrest for <$200, and keep the original leather, I’d rather go that route. Thanks. I appreciate the input.
 

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1989 300SE 240k miles
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Also, I can pull the leather seat bottoms easy enough. Is there anything I can do from the inside/underneath to strengthen/reinforce these areas where I’ll need filler? Is there any value in that?
 

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1982 MERCEDES 280SE AUSTRALIAN DELIVERED RHD
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189 Posts
[Time consuming labor intensive…I hand stitched the replacement soft-top windows in both my r129’s. I just finished replacing the w126 expansion valve. I like time consuming labor intensive jobs. They’re kind of why I own my car 😉]

I used to, when I first started car detailing & fixing upholstery over 40 years ago. If you like, you like it (y) go for it. There's something really satisfying about putting in long hours & getting the exact result you want. I tip I learned from back then is to use colour co-ordinated shoe cream for both upholstery & dashboards. Keeps the leather supple & replaces some lost colour, but ultimately with larger cracks it will need sanding, filling, sanding then colouring, and repeat. We thought Armor All was a godsend when it was invented, but quickly learned it put a quick shine on surfaces but split them quickly when exposed to sunshine.

[Replacing the leather isn’t difficult. I already replaced the driver’s top leather. But used bottoms are insanely priced now. And new GAHH is ~$1800 USD. And while $800 for LSeats is far more palatable, I still keep reminding myself I paid $400 for my car. So if I can repair both front seat bottoms and my armrest for <$200, and keep the original leather, I’d rather go that route. Thanks. I appreciate the input.]

Wow $400, excellent. I have a couple of 928's, you can get customised leather for far less than $1800USD & that's from a US guy that has insanely high perfection levels. As with Porsche, sometimes the operators see Mercedes & the $ sign goes kaching.......
 

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1981 300SD W126
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234 Posts
Wow $400, excellent. I have a couple of 928's, you can get customised leather for far less than $1800USD & that's from a US guy that has insanely high perfection levels. As with Porsche, sometimes the operators see Mercedes & the $ sign goes kaching.......

Please share the US Guy for leather. Thanks
 

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1982 MERCEDES 280SE AUSTRALIAN DELIVERED RHD
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189 Posts
Just had a quick look 81300SD, unfortunately it looks like he's closed.

Website is gone & I can't find anything current on a quick search. He's been in business well over 20 years so looks like he's closed shop.
 

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SuperModerator
1986/1990 W126
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17,709 Posts
To be fair, the cracking you see is going to be in the PU coating on top of the leather.
It does mean the leather is folding more there, but it's not as bad as it looks.
I've even repaired a tear in a rear seat I bought, on the perforated section. I used filler and paint. A cocktail stick to remake the perforations. Wasn't too bad and I'm a rank amateur.
There's some great examples on here, @magicbigdaddy has done some lovely ones.
 

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1989 300SE 240k miles
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks Ian. Yeah, I bag-blamed the interior a couple days prior to taking those pictures and making this post. The cracks seemed much less scary when I re-examined them yesterday. Though I do have two areas of concern. The crack that continues the perforation’s hemline outward seems deeper than the rest.

And there’s a little V created by 2 cracks. It’s in the front, and deep to the car. I looked this morning and I create it with my inside leg every time I get in the car. So I definitely want to rejuvenate, clean, fill, and dye those.
2703260
I wonder if rebuilding the seat’s springs will reduce the strain there? Because that’s on the to-do list. And I have those materials on hand.

@luckymike, I believe you’re the one I recently discussed bag-balm with for the hard, cardboard area of the seats. This time, I paid special attention to the leather behind the top of the right seat, under the headrests. It’s definitely softer than when I applied the bb. It’s downright pliable now, and flexes back into shape. What I did was applied the bb, and had the car sit in the 80° F warehouse, out of the sun but in the humidity, for 48 hours. And I’ve been driving it out in the Florida sun for a couples days after that. ~90° highs, 90%+ humidity.
 

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68 250S, 91 300se, 98 SL500, 450SEL 6.9, 14 CLS550 Past MB's; 300SD, 300E, 300TE, 190E, ML420
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You also need dye to recolor everything.
 

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You have the late gen 2 updated seats so I don’t think they suffer from the spring collapse that earlier seats do - or at least all the cars I’ve sat in with collapsed springs are the earlier design
 

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1989 300SE 240k miles
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
You also need dye to recolor everything.
Everything…. Ugh… I don’t want to re-dye everything. In that scenario, I may just order new leather and sell my old leather.
 

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1989 300SE 240k miles
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
You have the late gen 2 updated seats so I don’t think they suffer from the spring collapse that earlier seats do - or at least all the cars I’ve sat in with collapsed springs are the earlier design
Well, mine feel collapsed. Particularly compared to the passenger’s seat. At some point I will take it apart and we’ll know.
 

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1986/1990 W126
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You'd be surprised how easy it is to redye.
I recommend using a finishing coat, also called leather lacquer.
The more matt the better. It seals the dye coat in.
 

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Premium Member
1989 560 SEC - V-8 Kompressor - 95 E320 Estate
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2,165 Posts
Here are some of my results. It is all about prep. Although these examples don't show many cracks, the filler is your friend. I'm currently patching a driver seat bolster with replacement leather. Should have some after pics in the next couple of days.
2703820
2703833
2703821
2703815
2703816
2703817
2703818
2703819
 

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Premium Member
1989 560 SEC - V-8 Kompressor - 95 E320 Estate
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2,165 Posts
Well I finally finished the seat for my son's 95 E320. It was the first couple pictures in the above post. Although not like new it does match the rest of the car and should last quite a while if not abused. I also refreshed the arm rest and head rest to match the seat. Mike

Furniture Motor vehicle Comfort Plant Chair
 
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