DIY - Cover your cracked/old/crap saddle

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  • Since a few people have asked about this, I thought I'd do a DIY thread on it so everyone can keep hold of their old and messed up saddles rather than having to buy expensive new ones.

    Don't know whether this would work for all saddles but definitely does for turbo style ones and other leather/padded types.

    The first one I did was a knackered turbo from LPG with no padding on the front and the lycra falling off. This one is in slightly better shape but cracked and I like the grip of suede for polo. (You can do it leather or suede side up to change the colour etc) (Hipster.)

    You will need.

    1. Some leather that you want to use. Alma leather near Bicycle Magic on Greatorex Street near Whitechapel has loads and in lots of colours. Thinner stretches easier, but thicker lasts longer.

    2. An old saddle to cover.

    3. Some Impact adhesive like Evo-Stick.

    4. A scalpel or stanley.

    5. A piece of plastic (Take away box) with straight edges for a spreader.

    Step 1.

    Cut your leather to a saddle shape with a fair bit over the size for the sides.

    Step 2.

    Cover the top-of-the-saddle-area and a similar area of the leather in a thin layer of glue. Spread flat and thin with the spreader. Allow to go dry/tacky to the touch.

    Step 3.

    Tricky part - start at the back and place the saddle onto the leather in your hand. Then smooth the leather along the saddle till you get to the front. Get it right and flat.

    Step 4.

    Now add a thin layer of glue to the sides of the saddle and leather and allow to dry. Then smooth on.

    Step 5.

    Add glue to the front of the saddle and the leather. Allow to dry again till tacky. For this part you need to stretch out the ruffles that will happen until smooth. You can reposition if you mess up but don't leave it for too long.

    Step 6.

    Do the same for the back.

    Step 7.

    Trim the leather all the way round so that you have a bit over how much there was originally. Cut a few vertical slits into the leather at the front and back so that the overlap is separate and not a ruffle. Add glue to the leather and saddle going onto the plastic a bit. Allow to dry and work your way around the saddle stretching and smoothing as you go.

    Step 8.
    When dry, use the scalpel to clean up the edges and glue any loose sections down.

    You have covered you saddle.
    Have a beer to let it dry. Go try it out.


    I'll put pics of it on-bike on my blog soon.
    http://velojol.blogspot.com/

  • DIY forever! I might give this a go on an old Turbo i've got - anything other than suede though cause touching suede makes me feel like I cant breathe...wierd.

  • Awesome - been wanting to try this for a while - legend!

  • I'm all for DIY but I love a bit of wear on a saddle. It looked cool before. Not that it doesn't look cool now of course.

  • Yeah, this one wasn't too bad but the first one I did was unrideable.

  • I just did this to an old bmx saddle - not as well as the above but cheaper than a new one!

  • great thread, practical as ever jol!

  • That saddle looks familiar...

    Good read, thanks for the info. Time to re-do my polo seat :)

  • Good work JOL. Here is a white concor I did earlier (a few years ago) :-)

  • i just did this to one of my old plastic brooks saddles that cut into my arse like a razor blade.......i cut out a heart-ish shape piece of very thin foam and glued it between the plastic and leather. 15 Min's later a comfy and recycled saddle.

  • Just did this with an old flite ti. £3 worth of leather, a £2 tube of bostic impact adhesive, about 10 mins of work and I have a saddle that looks new (and is super suede haha)

    :)


    1 Attachment

    • Photo 26.jpg
  • Looks nice, good job, im going to do this to a charge spoon (when i get it) should be gurd :D

  • beware of suede! if you're using it for everyday, you will wear down your trouser at an alarming rate, says 4 months and you'll get a holes.

  • bah humbug!

  • just re covered my old san marco saddle in some old denim and very impressed with the outcome considering the state of the saddle before, may have to go down the suede/leather route before too long! thanks for the inspiration jol!!

  • this is mine with the thin foam between the leather

  • Awesome work people.

  • i think i will really nail it the next time i do one........

  • thats dedly - might try this

  • prob use moff-stick glue though - works amazing with fabric

  • Who here knows about leather?

    Further to the excellent stuff done so far in this thread, has anyone ever tried to extend this to having the same leather on handlebars and toestraps as well? Partly to save dosh, but also because it might look really nice to have the same stuff all over the bike. Simplest question first; where do I buy it?

    What kind of leather would you reccommend? I suppose there might be a problem with the seat requiring quite thin leather while the toestraps should ideally be as thick as possible. Perhaps the leathersupplier can do several thicknesses/qualities in the same dye? If anyone has actually done this, what kind of tool did you use for the stiching bit? I remember seeing a step by step guide online before, but can't find it now. Lastly, what stuff to treat the leather with -if at all?

  • Laminated leather works best for toe straps, it might be a lot of wasted effort to make your own straps and then them get ruined in a week because of excessive stretching.

  • Silly, but there is about three threads going at the same time roughly discussing the same stuff:

    Leather hand grips:
    http://www.londonfgss.com/thread27985.ht­ml
    DIY toe straps:
    http://www.londonfgss.com/thread27031.ht­ml

    Then it's this one about saddles.

  • Then I shall bring it back round to saddle DIY.
    I need a tiny bit of impact as I have a lose corner.
    Anyone got any left over glue they don't want?
    I'm assuming super glue's not a good idea?

  • Just did this with an old flite ti. £3 worth of leather, a £2 tube of bostic impact adhesive, about 10 mins of work and I have a saddle that looks new (and is super suede haha)

    :)
    im looking on ebay right now and suede is about £20 :S where did you get the leather?

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DIY - Cover your cracked/old/crap saddle

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