EricBayArea
Posts: 672
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 9:41 am
Delivery Date: 08 Oct 2011
Location: Walnut Creek, CA

Re: Bay Area Leather -- Group Buy

Wed Oct 12, 2011 3:26 pm

mdh wrote:very cool... i called them a few weeks ago and they told me they did not have a pattern for the car and wanted an arm and leg to do a "custom" job. What did it cost you? Can you send us contact info once you become a satisfied customer :-). Also interested in cost for the heated seats, etc.

I put the price and info a few posts above. They have a general number (510-487-1377) and then the owner's number who I spoke to to answer all of my questions - Dan (510-851-0063).

They use the Katzkin templates for the Leaf. I know this because when I asked for them to send me a swatch booklet they sent me the Katzkin book. If you didn't already I would call Dan, he knows what's up. The last time I spoke to him he was actually at a Nissan dealership where they did a leather install on the demo Leaf there. When I asked him if the heated seat buttons could go next to the cup holders (in front of the aux and usb, where there are blank plugs), he told me to hold on so he can go over to the Leaf on the lot, sit in, and confirm. And yes, that's where they'll be going.

But yes, I will post my feedback in this forum once it is done.
Color: Cayenne Red
Plate: I PLGIN

EricBayArea
Posts: 672
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 9:41 am
Delivery Date: 08 Oct 2011
Location: Walnut Creek, CA

Re: Bay Area Leather -- Group Buy

Wed Oct 12, 2011 6:27 pm

After chatting with my wife this evening a little bit more, we decided to cancel the heated seats option. So just leather.

Supposedly they are turning it around next-day so I hope to have a review up this weekend - with detailed photos.
Color: Cayenne Red
Plate: I PLGIN

palmermd
Posts: 2627
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:19 pm
Delivery Date: 31 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 1100011011
Location: Hermosa Beach, CA

Re: Bay Area Leather -- Group Buy

Wed Oct 12, 2011 7:05 pm

EricBayArea wrote:After chatting with my wife this evening a little bit more, we decided to cancel the heated seats option. So just leather.
That a mistake. Not installing heated seats that is. Not the decision to include your wife. I would install heated seats and then permanently remove the stock heater. Heated seats will use far less energy than the stock heater and you'll feel warmer.
Michael

Leaf from 31 March 2011 - Traded 18 April 2019 for Tesla Model 3 Unicorn
Driving electric since 1996


Leaf Bar Loss

EricBayArea
Posts: 672
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 9:41 am
Delivery Date: 08 Oct 2011
Location: Walnut Creek, CA

Re: Bay Area Leather -- Group Buy

Thu Oct 13, 2011 8:37 am

palmermd wrote:
EricBayArea wrote:After chatting with my wife this evening a little bit more, we decided to cancel the heated seats option. So just leather.
That a mistake. Not installing heated seats that is. Not the decision to include your wife. I would install heated seats and then permanently remove the stock heater. Heated seats will use far less energy than the stock heater and you'll feel warmer.
I'm conflicted. $500 is not a small amount (if it were 200 or maybe even 300, I wouldn't care as much). Living where I live, it doesn't get too cold that often (less in Walnut Creek than Stockton I'd presume) and the car is always in an insulated garage. I know that leather will feel colder in cooler weather than the cloth seats, but still... I'm thinking that we can always get them to put in a seat heater at a later time if it becomes an issue. That, and the longest drives we make are about 65 miles round-trip which is doable with the heater on on 100% charge.

You've made me reconsider and ponder some more :)
Color: Cayenne Red
Plate: I PLGIN

palmermd
Posts: 2627
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:19 pm
Delivery Date: 31 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 1100011011
Location: Hermosa Beach, CA

Re: Bay Area Leather -- Group Buy

Thu Oct 13, 2011 8:49 am

That is a bit pricey. The DIY kits are about $250. I did not think installation would be that expensive given that they are already taking the seats apart, which is the hard part of the installation. At that price it does make it a harder decision. The mild winters here in north central California also make it harder. It does not get cold enough to need much heat, but if you need just a little bit, the stock heater draws a lot of power just to "prime" the system. There is a lot of water to be heated to get the system read to provide heat. Then we don't really use much of it. That is why I disconnected the heater in mine right now and I plan to DIY some seat heaters.
Michael

Leaf from 31 March 2011 - Traded 18 April 2019 for Tesla Model 3 Unicorn
Driving electric since 1996


Leaf Bar Loss

JohnOver
Posts: 144
Joined: Sat Jun 25, 2011 1:06 pm
Delivery Date: 24 Jun 2011
Leaf Number: 4232
Location: Santa Cruz Mountains near Hwy 17 & Summit Rd
Contact: Website

Re: Bay Area Leather -- Group Buy

Thu Oct 13, 2011 10:34 am

palmermd wrote:That is why I disconnected the heater in mine right now and I plan to DIY some seat heaters.
Please elaborate on disconnecting the resistive heater... I'd like to make it switchable. That way I can still preheat the car on shore power using the climate timer, but stop it from running while I'm on the traction battery.
2011 LEAF (Silver SL+QC) - 6/24/11 (on 2/3/08 reserved an Aptera 2e #372)
AV EVSE, plus Ingineer's 240V upgrade, and a fist full of adapters
Other cars: '05 Honda Accord Hybrid, '96 Honda Odyssey
6.5 kW PV, making ~24 kWh per day (average).

EricBayArea
Posts: 672
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 9:41 am
Delivery Date: 08 Oct 2011
Location: Walnut Creek, CA

Re: Bay Area Leather -- Group Buy

Fri Oct 14, 2011 4:16 pm

Thursday afternoon around 4pm the guy came and 15 minutes later left my car with no seats, no door cards and no center arm rest. It was quite a site to see - both him removing the stuff that quickly and the car with nothing inside (I have photos)! He said that this probably his 20th Leaf.

Friday around noon the same guy returned and re-installed everything and I have to admit, it looks like you could buy it off a dealer's lot. The leather is tight on the seats yet very soft to the touch. The color I chose, Stone and it looks great. I didn't go with the same color beige because I didn't want seats that light - these are a darker tone, similar to the accent colors in the car. I did not opt for premium leather (Tuscany), nor perforation, no stitching color or piping color changes. There is some residual smell from the leather which he says will take a couple days to go away.

Just as he was leaving, around 12:30, the 12v electronics guy came to wire up my heated seats - yes, I ended up going with the heated seats :) Took him about an hour and a half to finish everything and he did a great job. The seats are wired using the wiring under the seats and only work when the car is in accessory mode or on. It is wired to a fuse that is under the kick-plate / petal area. We tested them and they warm you up quickly. He had to reset the airbag light because the seat had been disconnected. Apparently it's a 6-times accessory on/off combinations. Excessive, but he says it's required on all Nissan's after the seats are removed. He also told me that because of the passenger sensor in the seat, the heating element is only on the seat-back. Whereas on the driver's seat, it is on the seat-back and the seat-bottom. Both seats have switches that do low/high located near the cup holders.

The one thing either of them forgot to do was reset the auto-up of the driver's window. But one check on this forum (and in the manual) and that was easily remedied.

I will upload photos this week so stay tuned!
Color: Cayenne Red
Plate: I PLGIN

EricBayArea
Posts: 672
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 9:41 am
Delivery Date: 08 Oct 2011
Location: Walnut Creek, CA

Re: Bay Area Leather -- Group Buy

Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:54 pm

I'm sorry for taking so long to get the photos up here. I'm not usually a slacker like this but I have been way busier at home lately than normal. Also, these aren't my best photos but it was a last minute thing the other day. Again, the color is Stone and they are Katzkin.

Front driver's seat and armrest:
Image

Backseat. You can see the color contrast with the seat belts better in this shot. Also, the pockets behind the seats. I didn't notice on the old seats, but the back of the front seats can be pushed in as if there is nothing there. For example, if your knees hit the seats while sitting in the back, they go into the back of the seat because there is nothing hard preventing it. Can someone confirm this on the cloth seats?
Image

You can see that the back of the rear seats has the carpet-like material and it is all seamlessly integrated.
Image

Here is the door panel where you see the leather arm part.
Image

I noticed that the leather in the front passenger's seat was not very tight. I called the company a week later with this observation and we scheduled a time for them to come see the seats. Issue is closed, see a later post.

All-in-all I am very happy. I wasn't expecting a 10/10 for the leather, being aftermarket and not applied by a machine, but I have to say, besides the one thing I found wrong (which was promptly fixed no-questions-asked), I'm very happy - 9/10.

One thing I never noticed before the leather, the center console where the arm rest and shifter are, it is not centered between the 2 seats nor centered with the center console (look under the center console where the cup holders are) - it is slightly closer to the driver's seat. This becomes somewhat noticeable with leather because the driver's seat bolstering shifts against the arm rest, and when it is leather, it makes a noise. Not a big deal, just an observation.

Additionally, the heated seats are very nice. They heat up quick and looking at the energy info screen, the change to "Other Systems" isn't even noticeable. They are wired into power under the seat, which I assume should show up under "Other Systems."

If you have any questions please let me know-
Last edited by EricBayArea on Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Color: Cayenne Red
Plate: I PLGIN

phastphill
Posts: 16
Joined: Mon Jul 18, 2011 9:35 pm
Delivery Date: 18 Nov 2011

Re: Bay Area Leather -- Group Buy

Thu Nov 03, 2011 7:30 am

Thanks for the pics Eric! The color looks pretty nice with the cayenne red too.

You went leather immediately after getting your leaf -- is that just personal preference or are you concerned about the wear & tear on the 'eco' upholstery?

The salesperson at the dealership told me that the upholstery stains more readily than your average car upholstery due to the material. I wonder if it was just part of the pitch for their profit-booster 'upholstery sealant'. If my seats get badly stained (and I have two toddlers, so it's more like when), I'll definitely consider this leather conversion.

edatoakrun
Posts: 5222
Joined: Thu Nov 11, 2010 9:33 am
Delivery Date: 15 May 2011
Leaf Number: 2184
Location: Shasta County, North California

Re: Bay Area Leather -- Group Buy

Thu Nov 03, 2011 8:02 am

Very impressive work, and surprisingly low cost, Eric.

Do they remove the original upholstory or install the leather over it?

If you could get the original interior back from your leather shop, in re-usable condition, I expect you could get e few bucks for it on Ebay, in the not too distant future.
no condition is permanent

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