Help needed with pulling the front seat covers to get at the fold release.
errcl65ParticipantMay 31, 2017 at 7:49 pmPost count: 15
Any one had success pulling the front seat covers? I need to repair one of the
steel cables which unlatches the seat so that it can fold forward. There are two
cables, on for each latch. Easy fix, if I could get at the mechanism.
I have the bottom of the back open. But I can’t peel it up like with other Volvos.errcl65ParticipantJune 5, 2017 at 8:16 amPost count: 15
I followed a youtube video of someone removing S60 seats. The process is very similar on the 780.
There are metal rings which hold elastic straps and portions of the leather to the metal support
frame sandwich between the board. For the back rest, work from the bottom up. Slowing
peeling back the leather. Remember which you took the rings off and in what order.
Re-assembly is the reverse, expect that I replace the rings with plastic zip ties – which made fitting
process easier – leather easier to fit with the zip ties 1/2 done. Once in place, I fully close the zip ties
and cut the tails. To start the removal, you have to expose the front and back ends of the leather.
At the bottom of the back portion of the seat, there is a piece of metal V grove inside which holds the front
and back tabs (plastic) of the leather tight. Just squeeze them together and work the plastic tab
our of the metal (V grove).
First attempt took me 2 hours. Reassembly was 20 minutes. You need to master this if you want to
service the drive cables, drive motor, 2 cable releases for the fold forward.
1. This is a common failure – OE cable is a brittle single piano wire. If the back rest gears are out of sync,
Driver seat had a broke release cable – I replaced with cable with a similar gauge multi-strand cable for
hanging mirrors. Just thread the cable in the existing housing, tied the end up at the release, it is too tight
to use a crimp. Loop the cable around the release hook at the bottom of the seat and I was able to crimp.
2. What caused the cable failure is like an unsynchronized left/right gear. When the gears are not synchronized,
the frame becomes under pressure around the release hook. One of the locking hooks will be pull up so
hard that it can be moved. Repeated attempts to operate the release will cause the cable to break.
To resynchronize, use 7mm (1 bolt right above the drive cable) to release the locking ring to the drive
cable on each of gears. Remove the drive cable from each gear. Use the manual seat winding tool to
approximately synchronize the 2 gears. Check the free motion of the 2 release hooks. Make sure they move freely.
Optional (drive cable repair/extension):
Repair the drive cables by using a lighter to heat up the metal ends just enough to remove them from the
plastic cable housing. With the ends removed, cut back the plastic 1/4 inch and reattach the metal end again
by warming up the plastic housing. This should expose more of the drive cable – less likely to have a
slip – which will cause future synchronization problems.
Before re-installing the cable, push the shaft of the cable into the housing – this will push the drive shaft deeper
in at the motor end. Re-install the drive cables , lock them in with the 7mm. Apply power to seat and operate
the back rest slowly in one direction, stop and check the tension on the 2 release hooks. If they are synchronized
correctly, the should be no tension on the hooks at any point along the full motion of the back rest. If there is
tension, pop the cables and adjust the gears manually again.
It took me 3 attempts to synchronize. This was about a 2 hour job with the seat out of the car.
This was done with the seat remove and power was applied using a car battery on the bench.
I have both seats working (passenger 100%, driver is good expect for black box logic which i disconnected).DaviesParticipantJune 8, 2017 at 6:58 amPost count: 124
Thank you for this very helpful write up! I suspect 90% of the 780s out there have or will need this repair. I ran into the same challenge of trying to pull back the leather on the seat back and found that if one is not super careful you can tear the leather. Did you take any photos of your repair? Those are helpful- how far up did you “peal up” the leather. I was trying to remove the skin fully for repair and found it almost impossible to work around the side switch for the rear entry.
(1) Did the locking hooks fail because the original piano wire locking hooks broke, or because they stretched? Either one would cause the problem but wondered if simply restretching rather than replacing would make sense, if there isn’t damage to the wire. I know in more humid climates I’ve seen those wires with rust on them.
(2) I’m having the problem of the seat tilting back at an angle, which suggests one motor is working and the other is not so they are out of sync. Did you sync them by making sure the teeth are on the same cog on each side, I assume?
You may have seen this video but it shows the heating and cutting of the cables to modify the cable lengths, which I have done with success. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7sQB-xR1daEhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7sQB-xR1daEhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7sQB-xR1daE
Please keep these helpful repairs coming! If you include photos we should make them into an independent repair articles to have on the site!errcl65ParticipantJune 8, 2017 at 8:44 amPost count: 15
I didn’t take pictures for this one. The youtube video on the S60 leather seat removal
was spot on. Just take care to slowly stretch the leather. It is best to have the leather
already reconditioned with (e,g, Leatherique) .
I didn’t have to peel the entire skin off. About 2/3 was enough to get access to the
side switch where the seat release mechanism was.
The piano wire release was broken right at the release mechanism in the seat.
The cable was not stretched. I suspect the wire was compromised when it was
Counting the teeth isn’t good enough. I synchronized by trial and error. Making
sure there was no tension along the entire traverse. I watch most of Robert’s video
and his seat drive cable repair is spot on and good preventative maintenance if you
have the seat peeled already.
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