Miata Seat Installation - Sept '09





Installing New Leather Covers

Seat Backs

The seat back covers are a little more difficult to install because of the muscle needed to pull them over the foam backs. I wish I had remembered the trick used when I did my TR6 seats back when I got the car. I had the Victoria British Guide which suggested putting a plastic dry cleaning bag over the seat back before trying to slide the new cover over the seat foam. That definitely would have helped here too.

BEFORE starting on your first seat back, MAKE SURE you've identified the left and right covers and there's only one way to do that.  BOTH of these covers have map pockets so don't go by the instructions that say only the passenger seat has a map pocket.

This is the passenger seat back. The hinge point goes to the tranny tunnel side while the tilt mechanism goes to the door side. As you can see, the cover stitching and patterm is significantly different on each side. Remember when I told you to note the covers that you removed?
DO NOT mix the seat back covers up! It's very obvious once you compare the two sides.

And here's what it looks like all installed.

Now that you can identify the correct seat back cover, the rest of the installation is easy!

NOTE: READ the Miata.net instructions in Step 4, Page 6 towards the bottom for covering the seat back. Hopefully you've already read the instructions for the seat bottoms!

Try sliding a dry cleaning plastic bag over the foam to see if that helps with sliding the cover on. It takes a lot of pulling, tugging, reaching under and working the foam and the cover to get it on. The sides and back of the cover DO NOT completely cover the foam. You can get it pretty close but you'll see how you need to wrap the corners and pull the front panel over to the back side to cover everything up.

Unzip the headrest to slide the cover over the foam. Once you get the foam all nice and straight with the stitching running in the right places, you install the first hog rings under the speakers. There's 3 or 4 used there, but go by the number of old holes in the foam.
You work the hog rings in this order by arrow color: White, Red, Yellow. Then you put that foam piece back in the seat center and do the green arrows. If you're fuzzy about that foam piece in the seat center go back to the upholstery removal section and look at the pictures. You can also look at the old covers to see where the holes are. The last part is to pull the bottom down and around to the back.

Here's the front flap pulled over and hog ringed to the back attachment point.

The corners are like wrapping a present...... fold, tuck, snip, swear..... you'll use the 3M spray adhesive here.
After fussing with this part, I realized that in a TR6 you will NEVER see this part of your seat again! The fit across this area is so tight in a TR6 that these sides are right up against the sides of the car.
When I went to zip up the headrest covers I thought there was a major screw up back at the factory. As you can see, the zipper tab is located on the inside of the cover! I dropped them an email and had a response within an hour saying that they make them that way so the tab doesn't rattle in your ear. And that they will zip up just fine.
So I worked the cover over the foam, rolled the edge back and squeezed the cover together while I.................

Slowly pulled the tab with needle-nose pliers. Piece of cake!

I only went this far as the cover hides it nicely.


All you need to do now is reassemble the seats with your freshly painted covers...... you did take the time to paint them I hope.

So here's what we started with...... nasty weather-beaten seats out of a wrecked '93 Miata that had spent years sitting in a junk yard.

A new life, covered in leather, riding around in a '75 TR6. A 20 year step back in time.

Installing the seats in the car...........