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Old 08-23-2019, 01:46 PM   #1
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Default Leather chipping off upholstery

Greetings! Iím new to this forum, hoping someone can shed some light on this issue. I have a 2013 Great West Legend SE built on a Sprinter 3500. I bought the unit used in 2015, 30K miles. The previous owner took great care of it mechanically and overall, but there was wear and tear on the front seats, especially the driver side when we bought it. So we took it to an upholstery guy who specialized in vans to replace the ďleatherĒ on the chairs. What he did looks great, no issues 2 years later. But we gradually began noticing that the so-called "leather" on the bed was literally flaking off, leaving little white flakes all over the camper. Then we noticed the same thing on the skirts at the base of the front chairs and around the base of the bed. We went back to the upholstery guy who had repaired the chairs to get his thoughts. He said he had never seen that type of issue before. Unfortunately, GWV is no longer in business so no help there either. We're going to redo the bed and skirts this fall, don't see much choice, but this is getting very expensive. Iím resigned to the fact that we may have to recover the walls eventually as well as the same imitation leather is on those also. Just wondering if anyone else has run into a similar issue?
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Old 08-23-2019, 01:52 PM   #2
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That sounds like a problem that has also been showing up lately in residential furniture.


If it is actually leather (not PU or polyurethane leather AKA not real) it would probably be what the are calling "veneer" leather, where the leather is sliced very, very, thinly and then glued to a fabric backer like vinyl or PU leather is.


It dries out, cracks, and then falls off the liner just like vinyl and PU leather does.
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Old 08-23-2019, 02:56 PM   #3
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Haven't seen that in our MY2014 Legend.
One thought: Do you store the vehicle outside in the sun? Obviously, this can cause damage. We always close all our curtains during storage.

BTW: That stuff is generally called "ultra-leather", although I think that is a brand name for one particular manufacturer. I don't think it is real leather. It comes in different qualities, but as far as I can see, the stuff that GWV used was pretty good.
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Old 08-23-2019, 03:15 PM   #4
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Quote:
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Haven't seen that in our MY2014 Legend.
One thought: Do you store the vehicle outside in the sun? Obviously, this can cause damage. We always close all our curtains during storage.

BTW: That stuff is generally called "ultra-leather", although I think that is a brand name for one particular manufacturer. I don't think it is real leather. It comes in different qualities, but as far as I can see, the stuff that GWV used was pretty good.

If it is utraleather, that would make it a polyurethane leather, IIRC.


With the damage that widespread, it makes me wonder if the sun could have hit that much area enough to do damage that quickly, as we haven't really heard of much for sun issues that I remember anyway.


What can cause widespread issues like that could be related to cleaning with a cleaner that had an incompatible solvent in it. Polyurethane is a lot tougher than vinyl, but still can be solvent damaged.


It may be a good idea for the OP to send some pix to Ultraleather and see what they say about it, as it does not seen like this would be normal.
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Old 08-23-2019, 03:56 PM   #5
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If it is utraleather, that would make it a polyurethane leather, IIRC.


With the damage that widespread, it makes me wonder if the sun could have hit that much area enough to do damage that quickly, as we haven't really heard of much for sun issues that I remember anyway.


What can cause widespread issues like that could be related to cleaning with a cleaner that had an incompatible solvent in it. Polyurethane is a lot tougher than vinyl, but still can be solvent damaged.


It may be a good idea for the OP to send some pix to Ultraleather and see what they say about it, as it does not seen like this would be normal.
Good point about sun damage being local. Aught to be an obvious pattern if that is it. I bet you area right about a poor choice of cleaner.

I don't think the stuff that GWV used was literally Ultraleather, just a similar product. People tend to use "ultraleather" as a generic term like "Kleenex".
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Old 09-01-2019, 08:58 PM   #6
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I just noticed this on Crankyape. Is this what the OP was seeing also?


This is from the same time period as this is a 2012


http://https://www.crankyape.com/def...emNumber=91180


Click on a pic and it will open a view to go through them.


This is truly ugly.


Attached Images
File Type: jpg Seat failure.jpg (44.7 KB, 79 views)
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Old 01-22-2020, 03:38 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by booster View Post
I just noticed this on Crankyape. Is this what the OP was seeing also?


This is from the same time period as this is a 2012


http://https://www.crankyape.com/def...emNumber=91180


Click on a pic and it will open a view to go through them.


This is truly ugly.


This photo is similar to what I am seeing, but this looks like a lot of wear and tear damage on the seat. Our imitation leather is chipping off in places where there is hardly any wear and tear (skirts around chair base, around the bed, etc.) We're now looking at either having the bed itself replaced, although if it comes with the same imitation leather that isn't a good choice. My upholstery guy says I can probably find replacement covers custom made for the bed in that model, and if we could he says that would be a cheaper fix. Does anyone know where I might look to find that? Otherwise we're looking at spending in the neighborhood of 3K to have him reupholster everything. (That doesn't include the chairs up front which he reupholstered 2 years ago and are holding up well).
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Old 01-22-2020, 09:53 PM   #8
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It's a common problem across the RV industry with the "Ultra Leather". My Winnebago Class A had peeling, my friend's Bounder Class A, my current Montana 5th wheel, other friends' 5th wheels, my current RoadTrek Class B. I see more RV peeling furniture for roadside pickup than you could imagine. You have a couple of options: cover it with seat covers, replace the covering, or outright replace the furniture.
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Old 01-22-2020, 11:22 PM   #9
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My high-quality vinyl has no signs of wear since 2013 and it is not as good as a gold standard of polyurethane Ultraleather, perhaps it is not original one. Ultraleather Original 400,000 D Rubs wear 12-14 year Life-Span The gold standard for the RV, Yacht and Medical industries. RV Fabrics and Upholstery | Glastop RV & Motorhome Furniture | Pompano Beach FL
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Old 01-22-2020, 11:31 PM   #10
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My high-quality vinyl has no signs of wear since 2013 and it is not as good as a gold standard of polyurethane Ultraleather, perhaps it is not original one. Ultraleather Original 400,000 D Rubs wear 12-14 year Life-Span The gold standard for the RV, Yacht and Medical industries. RV Fabrics and Upholstery | Glastop RV & Motorhome Furniture | Pompano Beach FL

There is every possibility that the manufacturers of the RVs would substitute an "equivalent" product for the Ultraleather without saying anything or changing the literature or sales pitch. The "we have the option of substituting equivalent material..." BS statements cover their backsides and the customers get the bill. If it really is Ultraleather, Ultraleather should be able to confirm that fact.



Any way you look at it, we are on the wrong end of an industry-wise scam. In the past decades, you paid extra to get cloth seats instead of vinyl, and even more to get leather. Now you get to pay extra to get vinyl over cloth. Go figger....
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Old 01-22-2020, 11:38 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by booster View Post
There is every possibility that the manufacturers of the RVs would substitute an "equivalent" product for the Ultraleather without saying anything or changing the literature or sales pitch. The "we have the option of substituting equivalent material..." BS statements cover their backsides and the customers get the bill. If it really is Ultraleather, Ultraleather should be able to confirm that fact.

Any way you look at it, we are on the wrong end of an industry-wise scam. In the past decades, you paid extra to get cloth seats instead of vinyl, and even more to get leather. Now you get to pay extra to get vinyl over cloth. Go figger....
We still have Scandinavian solid teak leather sofa purchased in 1975 and it is just beginning to show signs of wear, my 3 kids couldnít destroy it.
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Old 01-23-2020, 02:43 AM   #12
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We have some Scandinavian furniture that we bought 45 years ago. Leather was really worn. One chair, one recliner with footstool, one loveseat. We recently had all reupholstered with true leather for around 3k. Top stitched. Beautiful job. Local family run shop. Thinking that I might have the 90s-LasVegas-bordello seats in my PW done by them. Probably won't; but it's tempting.
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Old 01-23-2020, 02:52 AM   #13
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We have some Scandinavian furniture that we bought 45 years ago. Leather was really worn. One chair, one recliner with footstool, one loveseat. We recently had all reupholstered with true leather for around 3k. Top stitched. Beautiful job. Local family run shop. Thinking that I might have the 90s-LasVegas-bordello seats in my PW done by them. Probably won't; but it's tempting.
Good (I mean really good) leather will age, but almost never wear out. Sounds like you found some good and paid for the quality.

Hard to find the good stuff anymore. Other doesn't last.
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Old 01-23-2020, 03:23 AM   #14
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I've had ultra-leather vans. Current van has ultra-leather walls and ceiling and real leather seats. I've never encountered peeling.
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Old 01-23-2020, 03:29 AM   #15
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Yes, real leather is an amazing material and doesn't deserve its reputation for being delicate.
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