Tinsmith's saddle how to...
I like vintage seats for my vintage builds, but they are usually in poor shape with worn out and inadequate padding. An old seat with the covering long gone needs to be brought back to life, but how do you do it? Last summer I posted a how to thread on one way to go about it using my favorite leather, elk hide. It is durable, flexible and can stretch a bit, making it pretty easy to work with. And it looks good. I'll post the link to that when I remember what I called it.
I also like the look of motorcycle seats in nice. thick harness leather. It is harder to work with and requires different methods, but the results are real nice and the seat will last forever. I was in Tinsmith's shop a couple of weeks ago when he showed me a great seat he found on Ebay for his stretched out 4 stroke Worksman build. The bike is nearly done, just wanting some final tweaking, paint and a seat worthy of such a build. When I saw the seat I immediately envisioned it in harness leather.
I took the seat home with me and rebuilt it. I took pictures along the way so you can see how it was done and how it might serve as a guide for you if you choose to do the same. I'm not saying this is the way to build a seat. I am saying, this is the way I built this seat. I've rebuilt a number of them, but taught myself how and maybe what I do is not how a professional would go about it
The seat Dan found is solid and in great condition with very little rust. It has an interesting "7" seat post which is in two diameters: the smaller solid steel upper portion which will allow Dan to have a lay back effect. Usually these 7 seat posts are of the same diameter. I used one on my Worksman and had to do a lot of shimming to make it fit a more modern seat post tube. This one has a larger seat post diameter on the lower part... perfect! No shimming required.
First thing to do was to disassemble and run over the parts with a wire wheel to remove rust, then prime and paint in black enamel.
Someday when I grow up I will probably lose interest in toys with wheels, but until then...