Seat work

While paint dried on the floor patch panels I started working on the seats.   The passenger side seat bases are held on with these stupid Phillips-head screws.  They look good from this side but the other end against the foam of the seat is badly rusted on all of them.

This was my brilliant plan to get the screws out.   The first one came right out.  Encouraging!  Then I broke off two of the last three.   Dammit!  Now we get to drill out some bolts.


I got out the left-handed drills and started drilling.  Stupidly I did not center the hole very well.  That will complicate things.

The hope is always that the broken bolt will just spin out with the left-handed drill bit.  Not happening here.

Now the hole is just up against the threads.   I then used a cold chisel to “cave in” the drilled out bolt.  As usual just as I was about to give up it moved.

I am turning the broken bolt out here.  Got this one beat!

I cleaned up the hole with a tap.

The other broken bolt had quite a bit of bolt sticking out so I tried the easy way first.   I used a Dremel tool to slot the bolt.  I put a nut on it and tried to turn it out.  No joy.  I really wanted to weld a nut to the bolt but I figured the odds were about 100% that I would set the 50-year-old foam on fire.

So I cut it off and started drilling.  This time I got the hole centered perfectly.

Then disaster struck.  I broke a drill bit off in the hole and could NOT get it out.  If I had a carbide Dremel bit I could have ground it out but I don’t so I didn’t.

So I just drilled out the whole nut.  I will have to put  a nut and washer under here to put this back together.

The drivers side has sliders to adjust the seat.   They unbolted easily from the seat risers.  I tried to gently loosen the sliders from the seat frame but only one came out.  I had enough fun drilling for one day so I gave that up.

Meanwhile time to clean and paint.  After a solid cleaning and wire-brushing I primed the bases with rusty metal primer.

After a couple of days I wet-sanded the parts and primed them again.

Final paint and ready to go.  But first I have to go on vacation for a week.  They look great.  As it turns out that is a shame but more on that later.

Driver’s side reassembly.   Here are the sliders on the bottom for adjusting the seat.   I was only able to get one of the screws out that hold these on.   So I cleaned and lubed them as best I could in place.

To replace the one screw I got out I bought this stainless cap screw.  It works but I can’t put a washer or anything under it.  So it might work loose.

I then cleaned up the studs the base mounts to with a die.  I used a tap to clean up the bolts too.

Base bolted on and ready to install.  This was the easy one…

A bunch of the parts for the passenger seat pivot are missing.  According to the parts book this is what it should have.   9 is a shoulder bolt.   8 is a special spacer.   7 is a 5/16″ washer,  and 6 is a a 5/16″ lock washer.

I have both shoulder bolts and one spacer.  Everything else I can get.   But I will have to get another spacer somehow.

Normal washers will not work 🙁

A split lock washer is pretty close.

I flattened the lock washer.  I will put a full-sized washer on the other side of the bracket.

Just for luck I made washers out of polypropylene (old antifreeze jug) to keep metal from rubbing on metal.  Here is what the result looks like.

Here is the seat base fully assembled.   Now for the other side…

Oh great. This looks like a problem. The other side’s bracket seems to be twisted.

I decided to mock everything up to see if the twisted bracket is a problem.   Sure enough it is.  Before the brackets were so loose it did not matter.  Now everything binds up.

Yes, this is all twisted up.   I will have to try and straighten it.  Which will probably mess up my nice paint job.   But it is REALLY hot out here and I am done for now.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *