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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I know there's 2 schools of thought on swedespeed- Lexol vs Leatherique. Well, I first bought leatherique in 2004 (the 2 gallon kit) for my 95 Volvo 850, and I've been sold ever since. In fact, it did such a great job bringing back that leather, that when I sold it with a blown engine and a front end collision, I still got $1000 for it bc the interior was "mint". Ive also used it on my mom's Lincoln, my brother's T-Bird, and my XC70. After 7 years and multiple applications, I'm FINALLY running out and may need to buy another 2 gallons.

Anyway, this is a pretty easy job, but its tedious and time consuming. It also helps if its NOT your daily driver, otherwise, be prepared to start on a saturday and finish on a sunday, and ride your bike all weekend.

That said, you will need 5 things to do this right.

1) Leatherique 2 part kit- rejuvinator oil (not really oil) and pristine clean
2) a throw-away 3" paint brush
3) a small cup
4) Microfiber towels
5) Sunlight and heat

So lets begin.

1) First, prep your car by brushing all the loose dirt and grime off the seats and out of the cracks/seams. As you can see, my pass seats look pretty good, but my driver seat is suffering from the typical bolster wear.









2) Fill your cup with rejuv oil, and use the brush to liberally apply to ALL leather surfaces in the car. This includes door panels and the leather on the instrument panel. I start with the drivers seat (worst) and go counter clockwise, and then apply a 2nd coat to JUST the drivers seat.









3) Before you even finish, you'll notice that the oil is soaking in, leaving "dry spots" on some patches of leather. Hit these again, that means its thirsty and needs more oil to condition and clean properly.





4) Note how ugly the driver seat just got. This is normal. All the salt, sweat, dirt, etc is now basicallly MUD in the cracks of the leather. Slap some more Rejuv oil, and massage in with the brush.



Ok, thats the end of part one. This is where you roll up the windows and park in the sun to get the interior to be nice and toasty, sauna like. Go do some laundry, hit up FB, pick fights with JRL on Swedespeed, do whatever you have to do for a few hours. ;)

Later, we'll go back out, look for more dry spots, and touch them up before letting it sit over night.
 

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I'm excited to see how this turns out. Even though my interior is in pretty good shape, there are a few spots on the driver's seat that Lexol just won't help. Any idea what the result will look like with the cracks, scratches, etc. that no longer show as "Atacama?"

FYI, I probably shouldn't say this, but looking at that photo of the whole interior made me feel dirty and horney all at the same time :eek:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Any idea what the result will look like with the cracks, scratches, etc. that no longer show as "Atacama?"
Best case scenario, if you get out all the dirt, you'll have light tan or brown cracks. I'm sending a sample of atacama to Leatherique to see if they can match and send me the repair kit in that color. If so, I'll make a "part III - repair".
 

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I got this kit...will be doing my R and the Saab hopefully....too bad it is such a process....
 

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Nice write up and pics so far. I'm definitely interested in the end result
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
OK, after just one hour, I went back outside to look for dry spots. Found some, so I goobered them up real quick:









If this is your first time using leatherique, you're probably going to have to keep going out multiple times before it stops absorbing/drying.

So, two other things I forgot to mention.
1) Be liberal with your application to the upper headrest area of the back seat. this sees alot of sun, especially if you dont have tint.


2) The main idea behind parking for a full day in your normal spot is because the "drying" of the leatherique will help you see what parts of your leather get the most sun. Those are the areas you want to load up with rejuv oil, to both restore it, AND protect it from future sun.

Finally, the Leatherique will reveal some natural "scarring" of the leather. Don't freak out, this is normal and will blend in again once dry.

 

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Same here, looks like quite a process. Wonder how this would make my gobi look...
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Same here, looks like quite a process. Wonder how this would make my gobi look...
I wager AMAZING. I did my brothers tbird and moms lincoln, both had ford's "parchment" interior which is very close to gobi. Looked brand new when i was done.

Also, my XC has a gobi interior. its a 2001 and it also looks mint. I'd post pics but that car is on Long Island and I'm up in Boston. Next time I'm that way, i'll snap a few.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Oh, one more thing. This is a little trick I use to keep the seatbelts out of my way while working the back seat:

 

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Well what a coincidence, I am trying Leatherique for the first time today, I put it in a spray bottle because it seemed easier than a brush, spayed in on very liberally and massaged into the leather with my hand. My car is currently baking in the sun ( well over 90 here in hotlanta today)

I did put on a two coats as well & after a few more hours I will go hit the interior with pristine clean, I don't the luxury to do the overnight process but depending on the results this time, might do that in the future
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Well what a coincidence, I am trying Leatherique for the first time today, I put it in a spray bottle because it seemed easier than a brush, spayed in on very liberally and massaged into the leather with my hand. My car is currently baking in the sun ( well over 90 here in hotlanta today)

I did put on a two coats as well & after a few more hours I will go hit the interior with pristine clean, I don't the luxury to do the overnight process but depending on the results this time, might do that in the future
Before you use the pristine clean, use a stiff bristle brush to loosen some of the dirt trapped in the creases and cracks. Also, rub your hand on the seats, and feel how GRITTY they just got. The longer they sit, the grittier they get. This is because the Rejuv Oil forces all the embedded dirt to the surface through osmosis. The longer it sits, the more can soak in and displace the crud.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
well over 90 here in hotlanta today
This certainly speeds up the process. I would suggest a 3rd coat if you have time, since this is your first time. it will absorb it, trust me.
 

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Before you use the pristine clean, use a stiff bristle brush to loosen some of the dirt trapped in the creases and cracks. Also, rub your hand on the seats, and feel how GRITTY they just got. The longer they sit, the grittier they get. This is because the Rejuv Oil forces all the embedded dirt to the surface through osmosis. The longer it sits, the more can soak in and displace the crud.
Can you post a photo of the stiff bristle brush you recommend or a link to one. I would be afraid of accelerating the wear of my leather by agitating it while wet.
 

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Also, I used woolite and lexol combination twice now and my front seats are soft but stiff. im hoping to get them very soft before some long drives anticipated this summer.

Does leatherique do a much better job of softening hard leather? Also, I saw somewhere that folks used saran wrap or garbage bags over their seats during the waiting process. Did you try that?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Also, I used woolite and lexol combination twice now and my front seats are soft but stiff. im hoping to get them very soft before some long drives anticipated this summer.

Does leatherique do a much better job of softening hard leather? Also, I saw somewhere that folks used saran wrap or garbage bags over their seats during the waiting process. Did you try that?
1) Use a vegetable/potato brush from the supermarket. works wonders.
2) Yes I had cardboard stiff leather in my 850, it took MANY applications, but eventually, it softened
3) Thats really only required if its really cool outside. Sitting the car in the sun should be sufficient. Besides, you want the vapors from the leatherique to permeate the car. It gives it instant "new car smell".
 

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I would suggest a 3rd coat if you have time, since this is your first time. it will absorb it, trust me.
You were right, the second application was totally absorbed into the leather, I put a very heavy 3rd application on, the seats were so hot I could not leave my had on them for very long.

I used up the entire 16 oz bottle of rejuvenating oil, I will let it bake for a few hours
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I used up the entire 16 oz bottle of rejuvenating oil
Yeah, thats why i bought the entire gallon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I will let it bake for a few hours
Yeah, depending how dirty the seats are, you might want to have a few clean rags handy. Since you're going to be getting to Part 2 before i write it, let me share the key points:

1) lightly brush the seams/stitching/cracks with a veggie brush
2) douse the seats with the pristine clean and wipe with a clean rag. it will turn black, you may go thru 2-3 rags before you are done.
3) spray the seats and wipe down with a clean microfiber cloth to "protect" them. This is your final finishing step, kind of like armorall, but better for the leather.
4) Only use the pristine clean to clean your seats until next year, when you re-do the rejuv oil process. It works great as a cleaner/conditioner for in between the once-a-year job. You'll be amazed at how the seats will come right back to life after just a quick wipe down with the pristine clean, AS LONG AS you do the major cleaning once a year, maybe more often down south where its hotter.
5) you will probably have to redo the major cleaning if any car wash ever "accidentally" puts a petroleum product on your leather.
 

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What are your thoughts of using a conditioner (Lexol, for example) between your once-a-year treatments?
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Never had a reason to, I have plenty of the pristine clean to do it. Im not sure how they would mix, but you can certainly email Leatherique and ask.
 
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