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Author Topic: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am  (Read 729 times)

In Relentless Pursuit

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Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« on: December 01, 2019, 06:19:03 PM »
I need two seats for my son’s 81 Trans Am ..The Backs are broke down & The Driver Side tracks rusted when you sit in them you literally touch the floor pan ..I’m looking for Black Vinyl seats ..Where online would you all suggest looking ..He’s paying for this his choice ..Any help be Greatly appreciated
1980 Trans Am / T - Top / 400/ TH 350

mrbandit

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Re: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2019, 09:13:30 PM »
My 79 has standard interior, and I plan to go with Procar Rally Smoothback Series 1000S Seats 80-1000-51RS since they have a similar pattern.
1979 Firebird v6 3spd manual (they do exist)

roadking77

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Re: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2019, 08:16:28 AM »
Seat tracks used to be hard to find, but I think they are a bit easier to come by now if that's the problem. There are springs in the bottom of the seat that go bad. Taking a seat apart for a rebuild is pretty easy, replacement seat covers and new foam and springs will turn them back into something that's as good as the 1970's. Entire seats are also out there but shipping can be a bit of a pain and they most likely need a redo. The new seat covers are an advanced do it yourself project, but all in all not that bad of a job and you will need to buy a pair of hog ring plyers for about $20. It will be a bit cheaper to rehab what you have over buying new seats. Procar has a couple of different seat types and are about the most economical out there, I think they have tracks but im not sure they are listed for these cars. So some fabrication may be involved in getting them to fit. Another advantage of the Procar is if they recline, and some have side bolsters for a tighter fit. If youre adventurous there have been some guys that have sourced late model seats with power, I think one guy used some from a newer gto, and another out of Z car. But there is more fab work to make these go in.
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TATurbo

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Re: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« Reply #3 on: December 26, 2019, 11:51:18 PM »
I agree with Roadking - Finding a decent set of used seats will be tough. Anything you find is likely to need some attention and shipping will be costly.  That said, I've used 'Franks' (FranksPontiacParts.com) for a few used parts for my '81.  They are reputable, but as with most used parts business the inventory is always changing and pricing varies. They are pretty good about their part 'condition' listings. So, if you are looking for used parts online, that's the one business I've had a positive experience with.

You could go with aftermarket seats for $200-$500 each and I think you need to purchase 'mounting brackets' to match up to the F-Body floors.  The ones I looked at real quick were from TMI, listed in the National Parts Depot(NPD) catalog, the seats are around $200 each and the tracks are another couple hundred bucks.  This is probably the 'easiest' option. But not the least expensive.

If you are looking for stock appearing seats, and this isn't a daily driver (ie. you can take some time to do the job), I'd suggest starting by pulling the old broken seats out to disassemble them.  Then, based on what you find inside, you can replace the bits and pieces you need.  For example, it sounds like at least one of the springs is beat, you can get just the springs for 75.00.  The seat tracks are now available in the aftermarket...around $200.00 per seat (you might only need the driver side, which is what I found in mine).   Similarly, both my seat foams appeared to be 'bad', when I took them apart I found only the driver side really needed fixing.  (There is foam sandwiched within the upholstery separate from the main seat foam.  If you are seeing tears through to foam, you might just be into that first upholstery layer of foam.)  The main foam could be repaired in sections, or you can buy a full new seat foam.
 Going through and fixing just what you need is probably the least expensive and it would be my personal recommendation for a weekend driver.
I disassembled and recovered the seats in my '81. By this time I'd consider myself pretty 'advanced' at DIY on these cars. But I had never taken a seat apart before I tackled my seats.   Like Roadking said, it's not a beginner project. But, if you are relatively handy with tools, have patience and can follow instructions, you might be surprised at what you can do.  There how-to videos (like on Legendary Auto Interiors website) and you'll find several people here on TAC that would be happy to provide guidance and advice to get you through if you go the 'do-it-yourself' route.
 
Either way, let us know what you decide.  And...Post pics!
Tom
King of Prussia, PA

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james.dowling99@yahoo.com

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Re: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2020, 05:31:52 PM »
I would agree with your rebuilding seats. I have not done fbody seats, but I have recovered the driver seat in my 03 Sierra and replaced a passenger side heating element { the wife loves heated seats}. Another vehicle I had, my fat ass cracked the lower frame, I disassembled it , welded it and reassembled it. Not the worst project to undertake be any stretch.
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Wallington

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Re: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2020, 01:55:31 AM »
No modern seat will look correct, even with a similar upholstery style. You will need to get them retrimmed or always look like a bolted in set of seats, which some may be happy with since then people will notice they have brand name non-matching seats.

roadking77

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Re: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« Reply #6 on: February 12, 2020, 07:51:12 AM »
I agree with Wallintons statement, I dont even think the Recaros look right in these cars. But, Procar makes a seat that's pretty close and not too bad.
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77 T/A - I will Call this one DONE!
79 TATA 4sp-Next Project?
79 TATA - Lost to Fire!
86 Grand Prix - Sold
85 T/A - Sold
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82 Firebird - Sold
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BBATCAR

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Re: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« Reply #7 on: February 12, 2020, 10:54:54 AM »
I just got done installing the NEW Elite Lumbar DLX with vertical stitching SKU: 80-1250-XX. It is the more expensive seat at $450 each but they are comfortable and fit me better than the more aggressive ProCar Ralley seats. ProCar recommended them as a more comfortable seat and they are... They still have the adjustable lumbar but without the more pronounce "side wings". They look very nice and I'm putting the 77 rear seat covers to match the vertical stitching. Go to ProCar SCAT website and check out the different styles. All said, with the floor adapters it was $1000 out the door. Installation is a little time consuming but they work well.

If you are a purist, then stick to the OEM seat and get them recovered. Either way they will both end up costing about the same. I ended up going with aftermarket because they do look good and make it easier for me to get in and out, as well as driving comfort. I'm going for touches of Pro Touring/ Resto look but still keeping most of the car stock, but that is me. I still have the OEM old seats if I ever change my mind. Below is a photo as I am doing a color change to Black.
 
seat by Elliot Sousa, on Flickr
« Last Edit: February 12, 2020, 11:17:43 AM by BBATCAR »
1975 Trans Am 4 Speed Car
Upgraded to TKO 600 5 Speed
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FormTA

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Re: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« Reply #8 on: February 12, 2020, 12:15:32 PM »
Those look close to the late 90s trans am, Camaro seats. Maybe that is an option for you..??
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Wallington

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Re: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2020, 09:30:07 PM »
Where the replacement front seats have somewhat of a classic style and trim, others have retrimmed the rears to match instead, even adding custom headrest extensions to mimic the fronts.

Fbird

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Re: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2020, 09:29:02 AM »
the 4th gen's go in pretty easy, also no of Nissan 350 z seats ....rear seat upper on the 4th gen...split the middle and add a panel to be wide enough.
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Re: Replacement Seats for 81 Trans Am
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2020, 09:29:02 AM »
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