Miata Seat Installation - Sept '09





Getting to Love Hog Rings - Part 1

NOTE: The Miata seats are asymmetrical just like a TR6 so there's a driver's seat and a passenger's seat and the two are not interchangeable. Make sure you mark the pieces Driver or Passenger.

NOTE: DO NOT just cut the old covers off as you will need to refer to them during the re-upholstery process.

Ok.... the seats are apart so how do you get the seat covers off? Well the first thing you're going to need is something like this.

Get a good pair of lever action cutters like these, because you're going to be cutting a hundred or so steel hog rings.............

So let's start by flipping the seat bottom over to look at all the little hog rings.

CAUTION: When snipping the hog rings, put a towel over them when you cut as they tend to come violently flying out at all kinds of crazy angles. I'd hate to catch one in the face or worse, in the eye.

Yes there is a lot of them............and these are just the ones that you can see.....there's even more that are "hidden"

They're round, made of steel and very hard to snip.

So after doing the 20 or so on the bottom you can pull the upholstery away from the pan and look for these two that are on the seat side without the tilt mechanism.
Now you can gently pull the cover over the side bolsters to get a look at all the hidden hog rings. The arrows show their locations and there's a bunch in here so take your time to get them all.
Before you try to pull the foam from the seat pan, flip the seat over and look at how it fits over the edge of the pan. Be careful working it away from the pan as it can and will rip.

Here's the bottom of the foam showing the slit that covers the edge of the seat pan

All of my foam ended up being in excellent shape except for the bolster by the driver's door.......which makes sense as it gets the most use and abuse!
Here's a closer look. The wire sticking up is what the seat cover hog rings attach to. Both of these are easily fixed by a competent upholsterer.

The wire should be embedded in the foam with small cut outs for the hog rings. The arrows are pointing to the embedded wire  (red line) that you can't see :-)

A 15 year old junk yard seat pan isn't pretty to look at.

You can cut the seat belt mounting point off as you'll use the TR6 belt mounts.

Part 2 is getting the covers off of the seat back......more hog rings here