Upholstery Diet?

How to keep the Cessna 170 flying and airworthy.

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4583C
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Upholstery Diet?

Post by 4583C »

The last three years at annual time I have threatened to put my back seat on a diet as I have to remove the front seat backs to get the front seats far enough back for removal. When I took it out this year I put it on the scales and was surprised when the scale balanced at 34 lbs. About the same time I ran across a thread on another forum about Sport Aircraft Seats in Wasilla, AK who have a “super model” mod for the back seat which should get it down close to twenty pounds. I know Jughead and probably others have their seats at least in the front so I would welcome comments. Picture isn’t where I wanted it but I’ve wasted enough time trying.
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dstates
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by dstates »

Sport aircraft seats are on my list some day… They look great and I’ve only read good things about them.
I have some oil leaks to fix first :lol:
N1235D - 1951 170A - SN: 20118
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ghostflyer
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by ghostflyer »

Sport Aircraft seats are a good product. We have used them numerous times on different clients aircraft. I was looking at a flight school companies 182 a couple of days ago and that aircraft cops a beating . The front seat covers ,ok a little dirty but fabric and seams have survived about 2 years of abuse.
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4583C
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by 4583C »

Found this forgotten thread while looking for something else. Used my old upholstery on the remanned seat and went from 34 to 19 lbs, and the front seats will slide back far enough to remove them without taking the backs off. Grandkids are happy with it. Special thanks to “G280 driver” for the upholstery work!
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mmcmillan2
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by mmcmillan2 »

FYI, with my stock seats I can get the front ones off without removing seat backs or rear seat.

Slide front seat to front, remove front rollers from track (will require compressing the foam with some force). Slide seat aft, remove the outboard roller. Then with a little bit of twisting, I can get the last inboard roller off. Having the front rollers off track let’s you manipulate the back rollers as needed to get them off one by one.
170B owner, KCFD, CFI(I), ATP Multi
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n2582d
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by n2582d »

This alteration looks like a great way to save weight from the standard zig zag steel springs in C-170 seats. My concern though is basis of approval regarding flammability and strength. For flammability they write that "all materials tested and pass FAR 25.853, 12 second vertical burn test. Paperwork included with seats." So that's good. Regarding strength they should meet the requirements of CAR 3.390:
CAR 3.390.png
Their upholstery can be installed over the zig zag springs but to save weight I'm guessing most buyers chose to install the Ceconite webbing as shown in their instructional video. The bar set by CAR 3.386 is pretty low -- 3 G's with a 190# passenger weight. On another website Sport Aircraft Seats says this regarding their fabric seat pan:
I don't know the weight capacity but I do know that it is stronger than you need for this application and you aren't going to get a significant amount of extra strength from the upholstery being glued around it. We have jumped on these trying to make them fail and have been unable to do anything other than stretch the grey material(hurculite) a bit.
While I'm guessing that the fabric seat pan meets the regs -- later model Cessnas also use a similar fabric seat pan -- that doesn't sound like a very scientific test. I'm surprised the FAA doesn't require more stringent testing.
Gary
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cessnut
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by cessnut »

I currently have my original '52 seat frames stripped down and am preparing to custom cover with foam and leather. I have been struggling with how to best substantiate the removal of the springs, especially on the bench seat frame. I don't doubt the strength of the ceconite or the gray herculite, but I haven't done enough research to feel good about just gluing it to the frame. Some modern seats use that gray material fastened around the frame with a metal strip stitched into the material. The Lakevue(BAS) jumpseats are approved with nothing but ceconite glued around the frame.

On another note, I would like to remove the metal trim skirt from the seat base, but without it the seat adjust handle is allowed to travel too far up and the pin can come out of it's bracket. This is obviously very unsafe, but I also don't really trust a flimsy piece of metal held in place by tiny screws. Has anyone dealt with this? I guess I'm not much of an originality nut, although I do want to keep my original seat frames as they are in good condition and are very light.
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n2582d
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by n2582d »

cessnut wrote:... On another note, I would like to remove the metal trim skirt from the seat base, but without it the seat adjust handle is allowed to travel too far up and the pin can come out of it's bracket. This is obviously very unsafe, but I also don't really trust a flimsy piece of metal held in place by tiny screws. Has anyone dealt with this? ...
My first thought was to use a small diameter cable inside or adjacent to the tension spring to limit travel of the latch pin. But it looks like the way Cessna solved this on later 172's was by using an MS24665-132 cotter pin through the latch pin inside the roller housing. Not crazy about the idea of drilling a hole in the latch pin but I haven't heard reports of them shearing at that point. One would also want to insure that the cotter pin is not limiting the latch pin from fully engaging in the track hole.
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Vertical
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by Vertical »

These guys seem to do a nice thing.
https://aircraftseatframes.com/products ... t-overhaul

I'll bet you could do something similar with a couple cushioned adel clamps to hold a slotted sheet metal plate to restrict travel. I think it might have to come off the horizontal bar, but I can't quite recall the stock arrangement off hand.

If $$ is doable, the Atlee or Lake View rear jump seats offer dramatically better utility, reduced weight and improved convenience. Although they are a bit less comfortable for the passenger.
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GAHorn
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by GAHorn »

THis wll likely draw criticism for me…(.a New thing, of course, LOL)….but it can be an “apple crate” to sit on with a seat belt…yet still be legal to meet FARs as long as it had a seat belt. I know this because I’ve exported airplanes to Europe which requires a very stringent compliance with FARs …..yet that is exactly what the DAR told us. WE did several …downright stupid changes…and the airplane suddenly met the rule.

Example: there was an open hole in the sidewall of a Hawker (a missing cigarette ash tray…which was unavailable as a replacement part so we’d have to replace the entire cockpit interior)… but instead of replacing the entire side-wall of the cockpit…to meet the rule that the sidewall must be entirely of metal…. we used paper-thin aluminum-foil painters tape to cover that hole to meet that rule…. and suddenly the airplane was airworthy for export. DOH>.
'53 B-model N146YS SN:25713
50th Anniversary of Flight Model. Winner-Best Original 170B, 100th Anniversary of Flight Convention.
An originality nut (mostly) for the right reasons. ;)
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cessnut
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by cessnut »

I had thought about drilling the pin for a roll pin or cotter key, but I also wasn't in love with that idea. I next considered installing an aluminum angle across the two front vertical tubes, held in place with adel clamps. I don't know why I didn't even think about a nice plate with a slot in it. I believe I will pursue that. Thanks guys.
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johneeb
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by johneeb »

cessnut wrote:I currently have my original '52 seat frames stripped down and am preparing to custom cover with foam and leather. I have been struggling with how to best substantiate the removal of the springs, especially on the bench seat frame. I don't doubt the strength of the ceconite or the gray herculite, but I haven't done enough research to feel good about just gluing it to the frame. Some modern seats use that gray material fastened around the frame with a metal strip stitched into the material. The Lakevue(BAS) jumpseats are approved with nothing but ceconite glued around the frame.

On another note, I would like to remove the metal trim skirt from the seat base, but without it the seat adjust handle is allowed to travel too far up and the pin can come out of it's bracket. This is obviously very unsafe, but I also don't really trust a flimsy piece of metal held in place by tiny screws. Has anyone dealt with this? I guess I'm not much of an originality nut, although I do want to keep my original seat frames as they are in good condition and are very light.
Cessnut on my seats the seat adjustment arm extends through the upholstery, like the drawing on page 58, not the metal skirt.
C170B parts catalog page 58.jpg
John E. Barrett
aka. Johneb

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cessnut
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Re: Upholstery Diet?

Post by cessnut »

That is correct. Under that upholstery is another piece of sheet metal screwed to the frame. I intend to remove that and the lower skirt.
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