Reupholstering Cushions - Fiberglass RV


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Old 11-06-2011, 12:29 PM   #1
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Reupholstering Cushions

Hi everybody,

I hope you can give me a little input. I'm planning on reupholstering the cushions in my '84 Scamp 13'. I have the material already purchased from an ebay vendor...15 yards of a lovely terra cotta/sunset textured-weave acrylic indoor/outdoor fabric.

Being an amateur upholsterer, I am a little confused by some of the info out there on the web. Should I cut the pieces of fabric the same size as the cushion so that they fit snug on the cushion, or should I add a seam allowance (1/2" seems to be the standard given) to give an eased fit?

Also, it came in two pieces, i.e., two separate sales of 8 and 7 yards. One piece has a fused backing, and one doesn't. Would it be better to use the fused-backing piece on the bottom cushions, or does it matter?

I plan on installing zippers on the gusset to allow ease of stuffing and removal for cleaning. At this point, I'm not planning on putting cording or piping on the edges, but feel free to talk me out of it if you think it would work better. The factory cushions are actually in decent shape, just a blah color, but they all seem to be wonky in that the cording has moved from the edges. That's why I was thinking of eliminating it.

Thanks for any input.
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Old 11-06-2011, 12:44 PM   #2
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Lil, you may want to check out this link: Diann's Cushions. Open each photo to see the text/info under the pictures.
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Old 11-06-2011, 06:23 PM   #3
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Thanks, Donna. I did check out that link from searching on this forum. Then read another where they said not to add for seam allowance, but this seems to be the more popular procedure. Gee, I can hardly wait to get started.

I'm also in the process of building a teardrop trailer and have to do a little sewing for that project as well. Started a quilt for it. Just hacked a 4" Overstock memory foam/foam mattress in half and am going to cover it with some water repellent nylon that's been treated to be softer and not make that crackly noise when you move around on it. Got it at Rockywoods Outdoor Fabrics and they were very helpful in selecting the right fabric. Good prices too.
Take care,
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Old 11-06-2011, 08:12 PM   #4
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I can't help you on the sewing, but maybe ..... I think the dinette cushions on your trailer are the same as the late model 16. When I got my trailer new I took them off one side and stored them. The other side has been used for a year, but is very clean. I'm getting ready to take those off too because of changes I'm making. They are the green color that Scamp offers. Soooo, it's just the dinette covers, but I was planning on putting them on classifieds for $25 shipped. Might save you some work if you're interested.

David
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Old 11-06-2011, 08:33 PM   #5
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Just finished mine last week! I traced around the foam exactly, took my half-inch seam allowance off of that to get a snug fit.

I think cording looks best, adds a little structure, and was set on it, but ran out of fabric for mine. In hindsight, I saved a ton of time and don't miss the cording as much as I thought I would.

I was surprised how much yardage was used up by the sides and zipper panels, so it might be easiest to use the unfused fabric for all those pieces and the fused for the tops and bottoms maybe?

Oh, and if you have a banana cushion, put a loooooong zipper on it (stuffing that thing was one of the more frustrating things I've done lately).

: )
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Old 11-06-2011, 09:02 PM   #6
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I did mine last winter and will not be signing up for that job again!
The suggestion given for the fit is a good one! You need them very snug otherwise they will sip around on the foam with use - even if it took you hours to stuff the foam back in
I did the piping but I made it and it took me for ever to make yards and yards of it! It also took a lot of material. If I had to do it over again I would not do it again - the time is one thing but if you wish to adjust the fit a little after you have them made it is not an easy thing to do if you have piping on them.

The suggestion of making the zipper on the banana cushion longer is a good one! I made mine a bit longer but wish I had done it even longer. I actually made alll the zippers on my cushions a little bit longer than what was one them.

If your not aware you can purchase the materials to make the zippers as long as you want from most fabric shops that sell upholstery materials.

The suggestion of using the fused material for the sides is a good one if you can make it work. I highly recommend that you lay it all out before cutting anything It took a few trys of moving everything around to get it all layed out. Keep in mind its best if you cut it all length wise on the material.
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Old 11-07-2011, 04:09 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone for your responses. I just spent some time cutting the fabric for the teardrop mattress covers and made the top and bottom pieces less than an inch bigger than true dimension. Will start sewing them together tomorrow when I'm at the shop (where I have my sewing machine).

David, thanks so much for the offer, but I've already got money invested in fabric. I'm sure they'll find a good home.

Sam and Jess, Wow! what a project you took on! Your progress is amazing. I feel lucky finding my little Scamp in such good shape. I'm going to have to check into using Tilex to clean my elephant skin. It's a little tacky in places and the Scamp table brackets have bled a little black residue on it. I'd also like to, at some point, remove the very yellowed spongey seam tape covering the joints of the elephant skin. I'm liking the look of the caulked seams better...but that's a project down the road. And thanks for your advice on cutting size and placement of the two types of new fabric.

Carol H. thanks for your input on piping and fabric layout as well. I was a graphic artist in a former life, so I actually laid out all the pieces in a graphics program. Now I can go back and switch them around to fused pieces and non fused pieces. Should be fun.

Thanks again everyone.
Take care,
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Old 11-07-2011, 05:32 PM   #8
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I'd like to as my two cents. I read all the problems people have had getting the foam into the cushions. I read on a forum of putting a trash bag ( or similar ) around the foam. Draw a vacuum on the bag (aka suck the air out). This will cause the foam to compress which will make it easier to fit into the cushion (since it is now smaller).

Once it's in place cut the bag. This will expand the cushion. Then remove the bag from inside the cover. Even it it comes out in pieces you will now have a perfect fit with no play or wiggle

Good luck . . . Jimbo
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Old 11-07-2011, 07:24 PM   #9
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I have been contemplating reupholstering my Boler cushions, they had been professionally done by the previous owner in standard trailer heavy duty, boring fabric. After reading this link I'm convinced. I was really worried about slipping and sliding fabric but with this info I have a better idea of how to start! Jimbo ~ great idea about the vacuum and garbage bag!
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Old 11-08-2011, 09:42 AM   #10
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I have to tell you that once I added up the cost of fabric, thread, zippers etc there is no way I could have done them for what a person here in Port Moody BC is doing them. If I had known about her prior I would have had her do them for me, have seen her work and its great. You dont need to take the trailer to her to get them done.
Professional customizable RV upholstery

Yup the bag trick is a good one but it sounds better than actually doing! :-) REALLY hard to get the bag off once the cushions are on! still have bits and pieces stuck in the cushion covers and they make a crushing sound if left inside.

My Scamp had what appeared to be dry cleaners bags wrapped around the foam from the factory and left on the cushions it kept the foam clean for 18 years and no sound from them. I tried to buy some in bulk but failed so tried out a very thin plastic drop cloth instead but it wasnt as thin as the dry cleaning bags so did not work out as well.
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Old 11-08-2011, 11:36 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carol H View Post
I have to tell you that once I added up the cost of fabric, thread, zippers etc there is no way I could have done them for what a person here in Port Moody BC is doing them. If I had known about her prior I would have had her do them for me, have seen her work and its great. You dont need to take the trailer to her to get them done.
Professional customizable RV upholstery

Yup the bag trick is a good one but it sounds better than actually doing! :-) REALLY hard to get the bag off once the cushions are on! still have bits and pieces stuck in the cushion covers and they make a crushing sound if left inside.

My Scamp had what appeared to be dry cleaners bags wrapped around the foam from the factory and left on the cushions it kept the foam clean for 18 years and no sound from them. I tried to buy some in bulk but failed so tried out a very thin plastic drop cloth instead but it wasnt as thin as the dry cleaning bags so did not work out as well.
Thanks Carol for the upholstery referral. I have been looking for someone to do the cushion covers for my Trillium without me having to give them an arm or a leg in the process. I'm sure they'll be swamped with orders.
Barrie
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Old 11-08-2011, 11:40 AM   #12
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That lady advertises on ebay too. When I do my periodic search for Uhaul items, her ad shows up. It is nice to have someone vouch for her work. Her prices seemed reasonable too.

CindyL
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Old 11-08-2011, 11:55 AM   #13
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She came out to our last meet and had samples with her and they looked good. If you are wanting the real finished look go for the ones with the piping etc - I think they are about $200 more but they are really worth it. Her mom as I understand it is/was a pro upholster and helps out with those ones.
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Old 11-08-2011, 01:30 PM   #14
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When we made new covers for our cushions, I made a paper pattern of the foam top and bottom of each, and added 1/2" all the way around. Then we cut a long strip the same as the thickness of the foam and again added 1/2" to either side. Then you simple sew the sides to the edge from the inside out. We used velcro but you could use zipper as well. Simply sew the velcro/zipper to some long pieces and then cut to width for your side pieces.
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