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Comparing upholstery fabric for bus and boat seating

Resources | May 1, 2009 | By:

I usually do boat upholstery, but have the opportunity to reupholster the seats on two buses. I need help finding the fabric, though. It’s woven velvet with a very colorful pattern. Can you help me find it?

Although both are upholstery applications, the materials used in buses and boats have a couple of fundamental differences. First, bus upholstery fabric doesn’t need to hold up to water quite as well as boat upholstery should. Second, fabrics used in bus seating must be flame retardant, which isn’t a requirement often seen for marine materials. We are more familiar with vinyl fabric used in school bus seating than a woven velvet, but were referred to La France Industries, a division of Mount Vernon Mills. The pattern your customer had is several years old and no longer available, but the company does have a number of equally colorful patterns that could serve as alternatives.

SOURCE La France Industries

Juli Case is IFAI’s information and technical services manager.

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