How to recover a leather seat or not how to recover

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Oct 26, 2010
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I recovered the western flyer's seat yesterday and had enough leather to recover one more seat so I pulled out my wifes original seat from her bf goodrich schwinn and went at it. You will see from the picture that the leather is very thick compared to the recovers Ive seen posted. I am also not using any type of adhesive or glue. When I mold the leather it is wet and I get a really good mold when it dries. I suppose if you had a problem with the leather moving over time you could allways pull the seat apart and spray adhesive it to the pan but honestly I dont forsee any real problems as long as you spend the time during the stretching and molding step but time will tell. I saw alot of people use the real thin leather to recover and all my seats had a much thicker leather so I decided to try it this way it also gives it a weathered look and blends better with the bike with all its imperfections. I also decided not to go with a pad under the leather because of the thickness of the leather. In all honsesty as far as comfort its really no difference compared to my original seats. I am going to condition the seats in a day or so and see how they hold up Im very optimistic with this method but let me know what you think.Any questions welcomed.

1. Taking the seat apart.



2.The Leather Im Using from A Shoe repair shop cut from a hide12"X31


3.Tracing the pan

4.Cutting Leather with a box knife to thick for my scissors

5.Into warm water for 5-10 minutes working the leather as it soaks
I also roll the leather up in a ball scrunching it and rolling it so it gets
worked well and has lines through it like wear to give it a better look.


6.Soaking at 5 minutes..

7.Working the leather I do this for 5 minutes then I place the pan into the
frame and continue to work ,roll, tighten repeating these steps until its
molded nicely then tighten and let dry. I also take a towel and rub towards
the edges on the top of the seat rolling it tight under the lip as I tighten.
You may have to cut some relief points or remove snips of leather if you
get a hig point due to the thickness but if you work it you should be able to
shape it and get it to form. If you are having problems working the leather
no worries just put it back in the tub for 2-5 minutes and get back to it.


Take time when you re-assemble the seat to work the leather until the last
wrench turn rolling the edges and rolling the lip getting it nice and tight.

8.Let dry 24 Hours Then Use a Sealer to water proof I bought some from
the same place I got the leather. Also If you want a certain color Dye is
available also in many shades. I usually put the bike in the warmest part of the
house the leather will shrink when it dries and form to the seat nicely. If
you want to use pad you can use something that will not absorb moisture
because the leather is wet you can dry and then put your pad in afterwards
but I use just leather. When applying the sealer wet the leather with a sponge
evenly then apply even coats you can apply more than one But I just use one.