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Old 01-09-2013, 03:40 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Reupholstering 2005 Non-Probax Seats

I have a 2005 Bordeaux Red Elise with non-Probax fabric-covered sport seats and I am considering having them reupholstered. Although I live far from any major city there is a local custom upholstery shop that is supposed to be pretty good. Here are my questions:

1. Does this require any "special" skill or experience - will an experienced craftsman who has never done Lotus seats have any trouble?

2. Is it possible to put 5-point harness inserts (holes) in these seats without major modifications to the seat bucket itself?

3. I'm thinking about a fairly simple design with diamond quilted leather seat backs in gunmetal gray with black CF leather bolsters and accents and some Bordeaux-colored contrast stitching. No embroidery. Any ideas how much a job like this would cost? (Keep in mind that I expect local prices to be somewhat lower than most.)
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Old 01-09-2013, 03:52 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Hey Todd:

Any decent auto upholstery shop should be able to do the trick. Fortunately, mine was right near my house.

Hit up James (Yellow99s). He was on the drive with us with the pearl white custom Elise.

He's a wizard with interiors. Works at a shop in Clinton, IA (right on the river).

Since it's winter, and there's time, you can probably pull the seats and bring them to him (nice little road trip). Search his thread - he modified his seats to replicate the Lambo Superleggera seats.

If anyone can do it, he can.
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Old 01-09-2013, 06:11 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Any good upholstery shop can do it. It is better to give them the seats.
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Old 01-13-2013, 08:28 PM   #4 (permalink)
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They need the seats
My local upholstery shop did my old seats a while back
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Old 01-14-2013, 04:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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My driver's seat has holes and worn spots. Any ideas on how much it should cost to reupholster a single seat or a pair of seats? I also wonder if they could use tougher material at the wear spots.
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Old 01-15-2013, 03:03 PM   #6 (permalink)
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They will definitely need the seats unless you want some nasty fitting seat cover type junk like you can buy in oreily's auto parts. In the SF bay area you're probably looking at around $750 per seat or more. Nothing special about the seats... probably easier than most since they don't even recline. DO NOT bring them the car... put the seat in the back of a beat up pick-up truck if you can... they'll profile you as having big bucks and quote high if they see the car. Tell them you got the seats on e-bay and it's for your mazda miata...
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Old 01-15-2013, 04:27 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by ewalberg View Post
. DO NOT bring them the car... put the seat in the back of a beat up pick-up truck if you can... they'll profile you as having big bucks and quote high if they see the car. Tell them you got the seats on e-bay and it's for your mazda miata...


That very thought crossed my mind, but I chalked it up to my own cynical nature! If I want the door bolsters to match I suppose I'll have to pull them off too...

I do agree - the seats themselves are pretty simple and so are the door panels. I have an old Durango that my wife uses to haul feed supplies for our horses... I suppose I could leave it extra dirty when I bring the seats in...
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Old 01-15-2013, 06:00 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GR82DRV View Post
I have a 2005 Bordeaux Red Elise with non-Probax fabric-covered sport seats and I am considering having them reupholstered. Although I live far from any major city there is a local custom upholstery shop that is supposed to be pretty good. Here are my questions:

1. Does this require any "special" skill or experience - will an experienced craftsman who has never done Lotus seats have any trouble?

2. Is it possible to put 5-point harness inserts (holes) in these seats without major modifications to the seat bucket itself?

3. I'm thinking about a fairly simple design with diamond quilted leather seat backs in gunmetal gray with black CF leather bolsters and accents and some Bordeaux-colored contrast stitching. No embroidery. Any ideas how much a job like this would cost? (Keep in mind that I expect local prices to be somewhat lower than most.)
PM yellow99 he should be able to take care of you.
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Old 01-15-2013, 06:27 PM   #9 (permalink)
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It looks to me (naively?)like the upholstery could simply slide on and off the seats. It is just a spandex looking material going over the back of the headrest, and once that is lifted over the headrest, can the rest slide off (after all mounting and seat belt hardware removed)? Given the simplicity of the seat, why doesn't Lotus or a third party sell new upholstery kits that we can put on ourselves? Custom upholstery is pretty expensive (I consider $750/seat expensive).
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Old 01-15-2013, 07:49 PM   #10 (permalink)
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The material is not just slid onto the seat, it is glued to the seat.
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:56 PM   #11 (permalink)
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At the cost of Reupholstering the seats you are better of just getting the waaaay nicer Composite Worx Sp-1 seats and selling the 05 seats.
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:59 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Even with gluing, it still seems like the upholstery itself is sewn together and then glued to the seat shell. Even if some sewing is involved to attach it to the seat, a kit of precut and presewn (as much as possible) material would save money relative to a full custom job.

I wonder what company actually upholsters the seats for Lotus.
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Old 01-16-2013, 01:52 PM   #13 (permalink)
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At the cost of Reupholstering the seats you are better of just getting the waaaay nicer Composite Worx Sp-1 seats and selling the 05 seats.
I love these seats, but they cost $3000+ with the suede "option"... It looks like the base price is for the CF shell only (ouch!)

So If I sell my old seats for maybe $1000, I 'd still need to pony up an additional $2k.
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Old 01-16-2013, 02:32 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I love these seats, but they cost $3000+ with the suede "option"... It looks like the base price is for the CF shell only (ouch!)

So If I sell my old seats for maybe $1000, I 'd still need to pony up an additional $2k.
Negative ghost rider.. I got's mine for 1.8k delivered from Composite Worx Contact them.
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Old 01-16-2013, 03:12 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Negative ghost rider.. I got's mine for 1.8k delivered from Composite Worx Contact them.
Really!? Do they have padded seat inserts at that price?
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Old 01-16-2013, 03:27 PM   #16 (permalink)
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They have a discount price right now
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Old 01-17-2013, 12:09 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Really!? Do they have padded seat inserts at that price?
Seats, Pads, Lotus specific Seat rail. Everything in that price... fixing your old seats not as apeeling anymore eh? lol
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