Why no sheepskin upholstery?

Discussion in 'Finishing Techniques' started by smoore, May 18, 2007.

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  1. May 18, 2007 #1

    smoore

    smoore

    smoore

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    Why don't I ever see sheepskin upholstery or seatcovers in experimental aircraft? It seems to me that this would be the perfect covering. Cool in sun, warm in shade...

    Is the wool dangerous? Fire? Static?
     
  2. May 18, 2007 #2

    orion

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    I've seen a couple of examples of sheepskin covers locally but as you say, it's not common. In my own case I wouldn't use it since I seem to be allergic. I used to have sheepskin covers on my Jeep seats - the material was nice and soft and initially quite comfortable. But within about a week or so, as I got on the road, usually about half an hour into the trip my back muscles started to cramp up to the point I couldn't drive any more. I was about to go to the doctor but then for some reason I had to clean up the car and in the process took the covers off for about a week. And to my surprise, no back pain. Put them back on and the cramps came back immediately.

    Now, in my Cherokee I seem to be having the same problem but not due to sheepskin covers - turns out the factory upholstery is wool also. Needless to say, I'll be going in for new upholstery real soon although for now a thick towel on the seat back is keeping me isolated.
     
  3. May 18, 2007 #3

    Othman

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    Orion, better stay away from anything that used to say "Baa Baa". That's an interesting one.
     
  4. May 18, 2007 #4

    hihosland

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    Wool is light, comfortable, flame proof and excellent insulator. I have never understood why it is not used more in aircraft.
    davidh
     
  5. May 19, 2007 #5

    orion

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    I do love BBQ lamb though - but that I don't have to wear.
     
  6. May 19, 2007 #6

    Jeremy

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    Sheepskin seat covers are very common over here on military aircraft, so I'd guess that there can't be any obvious reason (other than Orion's allergic reaction) for not fitting them to civil types.

    The military ones I've sat on (a lot) are removable, they are usually just velcro'ed to the seat faces so they can be easily removed for cleaning.

    As you say, they are comfy in winter or summer.
     
  7. May 19, 2007 #7

    Othman

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    Lamb skin is a really nice soft leather. The only problem with it, which I learned recently, is that it's not as durable as say cow leather.

    I have a lamb skin jacket, and over about 4 years the edges of the sleeves and the zipper area show signs of wear (lighter color and a bit rough). It's also susceptible to scratch marks.

    A leather salesperson told me that was typical of lambskin. That doesn't happen to other types of leather... at least not as quickly.

    That may or may not be fully correct, but the maintenance of lamb skin interior may be something to consider.
     
  8. May 19, 2007 #8

    smoore

    smoore

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    Great! I hate sitting on hot vinyl! I guess my tentative plan is to create canvas seats with removable sheepskin covers.

    Orion's allergy to wool certainly is strange... You'd think it'd manifest itself as a rash first, not go straight to muscle cramps.
     
  9. May 19, 2007 #9

    orion

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    You would think so but apparently not. My doctor and a friend of mine (also a doctor) both think it has something to do with the lanolin and the sharp microfine hairs of the wool that can actually penetrate the first couple layers of skin. But don't ask for details, that's about as much of the explanation (what little I got) that I understood.
     
  10. May 19, 2007 #10

    hihosland

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    The term microfine in the wool industry relates to wool fibers with a diameter of less than 17microns. Fibers that fine are far too soft to penetrate the skin and are used among other things in the manufacture of super soft, super light, super expensive, allergy free underwear. The fibers in Orion's sheepskin upholstery would be at least 25microns .
    Davidh
     
  11. Jul 28, 2008 #11

    Cy V

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    I went to an airshow over the weekend and peeked into the cockpit of a brand new Cessna Citation. The seats had sheepskin covers on them. :grin:
     
  12. Jul 28, 2008 #12

    Lucrum

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    We have what I think are sheepskin/wool seat covers in the BeechJet 400 I crew.
    Comfortable enough to sit on but the pedestal and instrument panel are perpetually dusty because of the covers.
     
  13. Oct 2, 2008 #13

    skier

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    I know this is an oldish thread, but I believe some of the new Cessna Singles have sheepskin upholstery.
     
  14. Oct 2, 2008 #14

    addaon

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    Kangaroo leather has a reputation for being extremely light, and extremely strong for its weight. I'm far, far away from having to worry about seat materials, but it's on my list of things to consider eventually.
     
  15. Oct 3, 2008 #15

    JMillar

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    Addaon is right. MotoGP riders (probably superbike etc too) wear mainly kangaroo leather gear. But those guys don't care about price.
     
  16. Oct 4, 2008 #16

    longezdave

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    I have blue sheepskin on my seat covers in my Long EZ and am very happy with them.
     
  17. Nov 10, 2008 #17

    Flying Monkey

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    No! Do not use Kangaroo!

    I made this mistake once-My kangaroo fur seatcovers were very comfortable, and durable; pouch was handy for storing the hand held radio-but I just about killed myself landing until I finally removed them : Kept bouncing back up in the air, over and over and over......
     
  18. Nov 10, 2008 #18

    Jman

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    :roll:
     
  19. Nov 11, 2008 #19

    Mac790

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    It could be worst, have you heard about boxing kangaroos?:roll:

    Seb
     
  20. Nov 18, 2008 #20

    Ron

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    I built a Flybaby and my father convinced me to use sheepskin for covering the seat. Got to admit it looked really cool with the open cockpit, not to mention it was very comfortable.
     

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