The Ins and Outs of Classic Car Reupholstering

When people think of classic cars, the first things that come to mind are usually the distinct shapes of these vehicles and the powerful growl their engines make. Unfortunately, their interiors don't get nearly as much attention.

This can be a problem for inexperienced vintage car owners. Since a classic car's interior is just as important as its exterior when it comes to both aesthetics and usefulness, not having your classic car properly reupholstered can result in a car that looks worse and is a lot less comfortable to ride in than it should be.

In the following article, we'll answer some common questions about classic car reupholstering and tell you what to expect when you take your ride to custom car interior shops in Orange County. Read on.

How do you reupholster a classic car seat?

Reupholstering a classic car is a specialized task that can easily result in an expensive disaster if attempted by an experienced upholstered. Unless you have extensive experience in vintage car interior restoration, you shouldn't attempt to reupholster an old car without professional assistance.

Don't believe us? Here's how vinyl upholstery is installed in 9 steps:

  • Step #1: Mark the old seat for patterning.

  • Step #2: Remove the old cover.

  • Step #3: Use the old cover to create patterns.

  • Step #4: Add the sew foam to the fabric.

  • Step #5: Sew all of the pleats (you'll need a powerful sewing machine).

  • Step #6: Stew all of the panels together.

  • Step #7: Add piping (optional).

  • Step #8: Join the facing and banding to the sides.

  • Step #9: Install the new cover.

The above steps are just for reupholstering the back seats! Unless you're 100% confident you can do all this properly and not damage or stain the materials in the process, your best option is to have it done at a reputable classic car restoration shop.

How long does it take to reupholster car seats?

It's impossible to provide a universal answer to this question. The skill of the technicians, the materials used, the type of the car, and the available equipment are just some of the factors that affect how long a classic car reupholstering can take.

Simple interiors can take as many as 150-200 hours to complete, while complex jobs on period-perfect collector cars can get into the 250-400 hour range. The only way to get a correct estimate is to call your classic car restoration company of choice and ask them.

How much does classic car reupholstering cost?

Once more, it depends on multiple factors. Which material the upholstery is made of is a major one (for example, suede costs a lot more than nylon), as is the question of who's doing the reupholstering. Again, it's best to call a vintage car restoration shop and request a price quote.

Keep in mind that, just because a particular upholstery fabric is more expensive, that doesn't automatically mean it better than other fabrics. Each material has its own pros and cons, such as being easier to clean or having a specific look.

Where can I find premium custom car interior shops in Orange County?

Getting a new upholstery for your classic car is one of the biggest and most difficult vintage car restoration projects you can undertake. Depending on the kind of upholstery material you pick, it can be one of the costliest as well.

For this reason, it's highly advised that you entrust this part of your restoration to trained technicians. As the top classic car restoration service in Orange County, Chimera Motors boasts the knowledge, experience, and equipment necessary to provide you with a truly first-rate reupholstering.

With our help, you'll be taking your classic baby out for a spin down the scenic Carbon Canyon Road before you know it!


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