Whenever possible Let your upholstery sit in the warm sun for a couple hours before installation. This makes the vinyl more malleable, and easier to work with.
Make sure you keep the metal rods when dismantling old upholstery. You will need to re-use them, or make your own. (available at most hardware stores)
Start with bare frames.
Start with bare clean frames. (Be careful when removing old upholstery NOT to break any of the metal spike tabs.)
If your seat frames have a separate foam headrest that is in good condition save it, you can re-use it.
Inspect frame and make any repair necessary to loose or broken springs before you begin. Re-paint frame if necessary.
Fit Burlap on frames.
Cut enough burlap to lay over seat bottom and backrest. Give yourself about a 2" Inch overlap on all sides. You may use 2 layers of burlap for extra protection, but 2 layers is not required.
Hogring Burlap to Frame.
Hogring burlap to spring mechanisms on all sides of seat bottom and backrest.
**(If the springs on your seats are really worn or broken, it is recomended to add 1"
padding between the burlap and the seat pad itself. This is to help prolong the
life of your seat pads buts its not required.)
Add Seat Pad.
Install injection molded seat foam over burlap & seat frames.
Installation Tip: For an extra secure fit you can apply a thin layer of spray glue on bottom side of foam before fitting on burlap covered seat frame.
Seat Upholstery Bottom- Rear.
Turn Seat Frame Bottom over. Rear section of upholstery bottom has a pocket that will accept your old metal rod. Insert rod and center. Pull rod & upholstery over rear tabs.
Using a hammer, tap spiked tabs down over rod & upholstery.
Seat Upholstery Bottom- Front.
Once the rear is complete it will appear that the upholstery is too short. (If you add any additional padding it will balloon the seat underneath upholstery and make installation a little more difficult.)
Your upholstery will have a tight fit, if needed, have someone to apply downward pressure on the frame when pulling upholstery over the ledge.
Be sure to pull the inner drawstring over any spikes on side rails.
Be careful not to pull the upholstery at the corner seams. Seams will split when under enough pressure.
With bottom upholstery secure on lower frame pull drawstrings and tie onto frame corners. Take excess string length and tie both ends off in the middle.
Tap Down Spikes.
Tap down any lower bar spikes over drawstrings to secure string position.
Pad Seat Backrest.
Hogring burlap and glue foam padding on seat backrest the same way you did on seat bottom. If your backrest had a inner Masonite/cardboard backing you may want to fashion one before installing seat upholstery.
Slip Top Upholstery over Seat Pad.
Your Backrest is ready for seat upholstery. To make installation smoother, we spray down the seat foam with a dry-silicone lubricant before applying upholstery.
Another preferred method is to lay plastic bags over the foam for less friction when sliding upholstery over the top. Do not pull your upholstery by the seams.
Upholstery Backrest Bottom.
1954-64 Beetle Backrest Bottoms have ONE open slot upholstery tuck into.
1965-76 Beetles use 3 metal tabs to secure upholstery. Insert metal rods into both pockets on backrest upholstery bottom.
Backrest Bottom with tabs (years applicable).
Start with front lower section, pull upholstery and rod over the 3 frame spikes. Flip backrest around and repeat with rear lower section.
Bend tabs down with pliers or a couple soft hammer taps.
Join Backrest and bottom upholstery frames. Your seats are ready to install!