Sourcing leather hides for DS21
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Thread: Sourcing leather hides for DS21

  1. #1
    Tadpole
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    Default Sourcing leather hides for DS21

    Gents,

    Greetings from the US. I have a '72 DS21 Pallas which is in need of new leather hides on the front seats. The usual suspects here aren't stocking anything currently and Franzose won't ship here. Any suggestions on who else I may approach for leather? I could also use a complete carpet set, so sourcing all bits in one shot would be ideal.

    My leather is a sort of caramel color--so I don't know if the official name for it is 'brown' or 'tobacco'. I'm posting this from my iPhone so I don't know if I can upload a pic.

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    Anyhow, any help would be greatly appreciated!

    Cheers,
    Aaron

  2. #2
    Fellow Frogger
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    Have you tried CitronPieces.com directly? Many of the usual suspects are resellers of their products.

    If it's a 1972 model with the original trim, it's likely to be the darker brown 'Tabac' leather rather than the earlier and more tan 'Naturel' leather used before about 1971. The other option was black. The seats in this thread would be Naturel:
    DS front seat/s natural leather.

    It's quite thick leather and may be difficult to find a good match for the original, so saving what you have would be preferable if possible. Most hides will be a single colour and this is not as if you look at the areas that remain original, you see the high spots of the grain are darker than the rest of the surface. You also tend to see a lot of retrims with only one row of stitching in the face instead of the two.

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    Fellow Frogger! mberry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by David S View Post
    Have you tried CitronPieces.com directly? Many of the usual suspects are resellers of their products.

    If it's a 1972 model with the original trim, it's likely to be the darker brown 'Tabac' leather rather than the earlier and more tan 'Naturel' leather used before about 1971. The other option was black. The seats in this thread would be Naturel:
    DS front seat/s natural leather.

    It's quite thick leather and may be difficult to find a good match for the original, so saving what you have would be preferable if possible. Most hides will be a single colour and this is not as if you look at the areas that remain original, you see the high spots of the grain are darker than the rest of the surface. You also tend to see a lot of retrims with only one row of stitching in the face instead of the two.

    I would go straight to the man.
    Have just ordered a front seat cover in leather.

    Frank Riezebos <[email protected]>

  4. #4
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    Icon5 Why look outside the American Auto Restoration Market?

    Very surprised to hear of your trouble with sourcing leather hides suitable to restoring car seats, especially as for years the USA has been in love with Connolly leather hides for quality restoration work and you have so many specialist niche industries producing some of the best hides in the world that get exported and returned for the huge USA restoration market. Every US restoration magazine seems full of adverts for such products and also the hide softeners and preservers.

    You guys have access to the world market and a very competitive one it is.

    So I googled Connolly leather hides and found this link, that may explain difficulties in sourcing quality hides for car seat restoration - very interesting link

    Cracks in Connolly's world of leather - Telegraph

    I see that Renault is still using their Connolly leather.

    It also appears from within that link that the USA does produce fine quality leather, but the price is so competitive that the only way to get significant price reductions is by flogging not quite the same quality as o.k. for the job.

    I really think that you should be able to get the best quality and deal in the American Market (Bang for buck) and from what I have seen of Mexican leather products, they have largely taken over as suppliers of fine fashion leather products (handbags and domestic leathers)

    There might even be leathers and hides that are being sold at warehouse prices due to the Connolly USA sub company closing.

    Otherwise is there a reason that D's require "special" upholstery leather, most of our good hides get shipped to China and the poorer stuff hits our domestic Market. Argentina is the other source for bulk hides.

    I was surprised today to see the number and variety of full hides being sold in Ikea for use as floor mats. Should be plenty of similar floor mat hides available out of the Lone Star State of Texas too

    Curious as to the answer?

    Regards

    Ken

  5. #5
    Tadpole
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    Automotive leather is a different tanning to other leather, it has to cope with temperature extremes and uv light,it needs to be sourced as "automotive leather".

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    Quote Originally Posted by ipodz View Post
    Automotive leather is a different tanning to other leather, it has to cope with temperature extremes and uv light,it needs to be sourced as "automotive leather".
    Absolutely

    The whole nine yards (square feet on Quality automotive hides.
    Auto Leather - Australia's only Supplier of Genuine Connolly Automotive Leather History fo Connolly

    Bill Hirsch USA supplier (but expensive?)
    GRAND LEATHER-hirschauto.com

    Prices in Au Dollars
    https://www.google.com.au/?gfe_rd=cr...evid=834376277

    Wholesale quality American hides.
    Automotive Leather Hides - Auto Upholstery Leather | Leather Hide Store

    Ken

  7. #7
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    Default DS leather

    have you looked at Western Hemispheres .com in US?
    they did have them listed last I looked

  8. #8
    Tadpole
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    Thanks guys. I have checked Western Hemispheres and they're presently out of stock.

    What I've found as an aside, is that the US distributors of French car parts tend to be substantially more expensive than buying from Europe, where these cars were far more common. WH keep a good stock of parts, and are probably the largest reseller here, but they are expensive, so I'm not averse to shopping across the Atlantique!

    Thanks for the email link for Frank. Is he in michigan by chance? I thought I heard of someone who was up there who could make carpets and seat covers.

    Cheers,
    Aaron

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    Contented Peugeot Driver addo's Avatar
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    I think he's in Portugal, not Michigan.

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    I was once told it's reindeer / furniture leather, but I really couldn't be sure. Slough cars would be quite different and likely used a Connolly leather, but this will not be a Slough car. If you are looking at cow leather, then you could look at Spinneybeck's range as a start. It will no doubt be an expensive exercise if you want to do a full interior with hides from the same dyelot and you may also have to pay a trimmer to figure out how it all goes together as Citron Pieces already have.

    A lot of leather is relatively thin and may be 1.0mm or less. There are obviously others, but Spinneybeck's range is listed here:
    Spinneybeck - The Best Leather In Any Color - Product List
    A leather like Spinneybeck's Velluto Pele is 1.0-1.1mm thick and, while a lovely soft leather, completely wrong for the DS if you are trying to match the original. You can of course use whatever you want and that gives you many options for good leather at discounted prices. Plenty listed via eBay. The Spinneybeck hides below are all 1.4mm+ thick.

    Derby is apparently one of the products they sell for Rolls-Royce seating and they have a colour cross-reference somewhere.
    Spinneybeck - The Best Leather In Any Color - Derby

    Cervo is meant to approximate the look and feel of deer
    Spinneybeck - The Best Leather In Any Color - Cervo

    For a mottled finish close to the original, a hide like their Hand Tipped product may suit
    Spinneybeck - The Best Leather In Any Color - Hand Tipped
    Last edited by David S; 3rd December 2014 at 01:35 AM.

  11. #11
    mnm
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    Have you looked here?

    Catalogus 2014 Citro-Classic / Citro-Toon

    I have a set of their velour covers and the quality is excellent.

    Matthew

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    There is another UK option and I know they do automotive grade and also export world wide. Beautiful product too.
    Try this link.

    Home - Bridge of Weir

    SF

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    Seeing as you asked in an Australian forum, you could try Howe leather in Melbourne HOWE LEATHER. Howe is now owned by Schaffer Corporation Automotive Leather | Schaffer Corporation Limited so maybe an email to one or the other may be in order.

  14. #14
    Tadpole
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    So I've been in touch both with Frank and with Citro Classique. Seems that both have what I'm after (also need headliner cloth), so now I guess it's down to who to go with? Citron Pieces or Citro-Toon/Classique? Can anyone make a recommendation one way or the other? I'll say that the prices I was quoted from Citro-Toon are very good, and even with shipping, to buy new hides for my front seats, new carpets, and new headliner kit I'll be in for only about $2,000 USD and that's with shipping, so not bad at all, considering Western Hemispheres want $1,300 alone for just front seat hides.

    Of course, if anyone here will be traveling to the Netherlands THEN to Cincinnati, Ohio, I'd be most gracious to fill your suitcase up with Citroen bits
    addo likes this.

  15. #15
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    Perhaps, start by asking for a leather sample from each to see how well it matches the rest of the trim. You plan to refurbish only the front seats, so you want it to be fairly close to the rest or you will inevitably end up doing more later.

    And the armrest? You can possibly use part of a removed cover for that if need be or buy new to match the seats.

    I can only comment on Citroen Pieces and their leather trim supplied several years ago. It was quite a good match to the original trim at that stage, but I would say a thinner leather than the original and it made the back seat look so shabby, this it was subsequently replaced too. From memory, we used the backs of the front seats to tidy the armrests.

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