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Replacing vs. recovering seats

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  • Replacing vs. recovering seats

    I own a 12 year old 22 foot Sweetwater pontoon boat. The threads that hold the vinyl seat covers together are failing all over the boat. In addition, mold that nothing seems to touch has begun to infest the covers. My question is would it be cheaper to recover the seats or just replace them? Let's assume i would have to pay labor either way. Anybody had any experience with this? Thanks.


  • #2
    Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

    I'd say if you've got mold on the outside chances are high you've got mold on the inside too...probably more of it than you've got on the outside. I'm not a "just throw money at it" kind of guy but there's no reason to recover those if there's mold in them...I'd say it's time to replace.
    People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.

    sigpic

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    • #3
      Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

      Certainly cheaper to recover and most places have someone local that does uphulstery but if you have to replace the foam too that will make the price tag jump quite a bit, foam is real spendy.

      I would price both before you do either, the uphulstery guy should be able to tell you if the foam is reusable or not, just for an idea of what you are looking at here is new furniture at iboats and iboats generally has the best price you are going to find from a reputable dealer http://www.iboats.com/Complete-Ponto...view_id.352113
      GO IRISH!!!!

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      • #4
        Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

        Being an Upholsterer by trade I would say if the frames are in good shape you will be better to Re Upholster them. New product has a tendency to be less than top quality while recovers will give you better foam and fabrics. A good example is your covers. 12 yrs is not really bad but if the thread is failing then it probably wasn't the best thread to use. A marine Upholsterer will use quality Polyester thread. I guess it all depends on what you feel is better. If you do go the recover route be sure to use an Upholsterer that works with Marine products.
        Paul
        Yankee Girl (She's our 18' pontoon)
        Spring Hill Florida

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        • #5
          Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

          I am in the process or doing a rebuild on mine, it didnt have any thing on the deck when I bought it, and just bought a new back seat and I am trying the ones with the ABS boxes and frames I got them a bit ago and have installed and so far I am impressed.
          sigpicJames & Deb

          Bad Dog

          If it aint broke your not having enough fun

          my 1988 Riviera Cruzer pontoon rebuild
          http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?t=526820

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          • #6
            Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

            I am all for saving. It is not unusual for the stitching to fail. Assuming that the foam is still good and there are no tears in the vinyl and it is reasonably supple. Straight bleach will usually remove the mold. Spray it or wipe it on and let it sit. Wash off with clean water and dry. Apply vinyl protectant liberally and let it soak in and dry. It is labor intensive but it is simple to remove the covers. Fortunately I was able to recruit my wife and her sewing machine and was able to re-sew the covers. This part is not easy to do so if you remove the covers I am reasonably sure you can get a good deal on just the sewing part. Refitting the covers takes a T50 stapler and stainless staples.
            Once done use protectant regularly and keep the seats out of sun and every other weather when not in use.
            Hope this helps.

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            • #7
              Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

              Thanks. I heard that reupholstering wasn't cheap, but everything is relative, I guess.

              Originally posted by 5150abf View Post
              Certainly cheaper to recover and most places have someone local that does uphulstery but if you have to replace the foam too that will make the price tag jump quite a bit, foam is real spendy.

              I would price both before you do either, the uphulstery guy should be able to tell you if the foam is reusable or not, just for an idea of what you are looking at here is new furniture at iboats and iboats generally has the best price you are going to find from a reputable dealer http://www.iboats.com/Complete-Ponto...view_id.352113

              Comment



              • #8
                Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

                We tried every cleaner that claimed to take off mold we could find. Only removed some of it. Thread failing is the main concern. We have lots of running feet of seats with 45 degree angles at the ends for lounging on. So doing it ourselves would be pretty major. I admire you for tackling the project on your pontoon. Anyhow, thanks for the reply. It helps firm up our thinking.


                Originally posted by James R View Post
                I am all for saving. It is not unusual for the stitching to fail. Assuming that the foam is still good and there are no tears in the vinyl and it is reasonably supple. Straight bleach will usually remove the mold. Spray it or wipe it on and let it sit. Wash off with clean water and dry. Apply vinyl protectant liberally and let it soak in and dry. It is labor intensive but it is simple to remove the covers. Fortunately I was able to recruit my wife and her sewing machine and was able to re-sew the covers. This part is not easy to do so if you remove the covers I am reasonably sure you can get a good deal on just the sewing part. Refitting the covers takes a T50 stapler and stainless staples.
                Once done use protectant regularly and keep the seats out of sun and every other weather when not in use.
                Hope this helps.

                Comment



                • #9
                  Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

                  Thaks. That helps.



                  Originally posted by MinUph View Post
                  Being an Upholsterer by trade I would say if the frames are in good shape you will be better to Re Upholster them. New product has a tendency to be less than top quality while recovers will give you better foam and fabrics. A good example is your covers. 12 yrs is not really bad but if the thread is failing then it probably wasn't the best thread to use. A marine Upholsterer will use quality Polyester thread. I guess it all depends on what you feel is better. If you do go the recover route be sure to use an Upholsterer that works with Marine products.

                  Comment



                  • #10
                    Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

                    I have two other older boats here,a 78 Mark Twain and an 87 Cobia Monte Carlo in addition to my Toon that I have used the same procedure on, bleach etc. It works.
                    I also have a 93 Nitro Fish and Ski that I had to totally redo because everything including the wood was rotted. Wasn't anywhere as big as the Toon of course but it took some work. Beautiful now.
                    Good luck with your project.
                    Incidentally Polyester also rots so use protectant. Chances are that Polyester was used originally or it would have rotted much sooner. I have not been able to find anything to substitute for polyester.

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                    • #11
                      Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

                      FWIW I got a 1200 estimate to recover my 21 footer. Geography's a factor I'm sure, but maybe that gives you some food for thought. If your rig is twelve years old you have the rotocast seat bases I assume.
                      Better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it.
                      21' Suntracker(for my girls), 16' Polarkraft MV w/ 25 HP Merc(for me), 14' Odyssey bucket raft, 16' Purple Mad River Explorer; vice-admiral's boat, but she lets me use it as long as I don't forget it's hers. Esquif Vertige

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                      • #12
                        Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

                        +1 on getting an upholstery guy. 12 years is not that old for upholstery, as my vinyl seat covers are finally starting to crack @ 26 years old.

                        My wood framed seats are starting to rot where the carpet wicked water onto the wood--but they can be repaired/reinforced. I looked into buying marine vinyl on the internet, but found that replacing the foam would be cost prohibitive. Foam is really expensive. There again, spending $2,500 on a new set of seats is putting good money after bad on such an old boat. I suspect others are in the "same boat."

                        I would rather put the money toward a new pontoon boat--the last one I'll ever buy. Keep the upholstery dry and keep '303' protectant on them, and upholstery will last for a very, very long time.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

                          Originally posted by lncoop View Post
                          FWIW I got a 1200 estimate to recover my 21 footer. Geography's a factor I'm sure, but maybe that gives you some food for thought. If your rig is twelve years old you have the rotocast seat bases I assume.
                          Thanks. That gives me something to think about.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

                            When I contacted Godfrey Marine they said that some cleaner I had used might have rotted the threads. But I was always careful to keep the cleaner away from the threads. Nevertheless they refused to help in any way. Anyhow, thanks for the info.

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                            • #15
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                              Re: Replacing vs. recovering seats

                              Originally posted by James R View Post
                              I am all for saving. It is not unusual for the stitching to fail. Assuming that the foam is still good and there are no tears in the vinyl and it is reasonably supple. Straight bleach will usually remove the mold. Spray it or wipe it on and let it sit. Wash off with clean water and dry. Apply vinyl protectant liberally and let it soak in and dry. It is labor intensive but it is simple to remove the covers. Fortunately I was able to recruit my wife and her sewing machine and was able to re-sew the covers. This part is not easy to do so if you remove the covers I am reasonably sure you can get a good deal on just the sewing part. Refitting the covers takes a T50 stapler and stainless staples.
                              Once done use protectant regularly and keep the seats out of sun and every other weather when not in use.
                              Hope this helps.
                              Never use bleach for mold. Where it appears to get rid of it, it doesn't. Mold will actually feed off of bleach, not to mention it is also very hard on upholstery material.
                              Ray

                              Never take instruction from a guy with missing fingers.

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