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      03-25-2013, 01:34 AM   #1
bsiciliano
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Drives: 2011 M3 Convertible
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Los Angeles

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DIY Tri-Stitch Shift Boot

I like the look of the Tri-Stitch Shift Boot, but I could not justify the price of it. I figured I could do it myself. Well, here it is, at a cost of $12 and about 3 hours of time. You can use the same instructions for the e-brake boot. It will take a little longer because there are more stitches.

What you will need:

1. Needle - Use a thicker needle to go through leather. You can buy a leather needle. I used a needle for sails which did the trick.

2. Thread - The hardest part is matching the colors. I went to the sewing store and brought my M-Power Zip Up. I matched the colors to that. I also used a slightly thicker thread to make the stitches "pop" a bit. You can use a thinner thread. Personal choice.

3. Small screw-driver.

4. Glue - to reglue the base to the boot. I acutally used Krazy Glue which worked fine.

5. Option - A Thimble. Seriously.



Step #1 - Remove the Shift Boot. I will not repeat the instructions, but they can be found here http://www.m3post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=312715

Step #2. Remove the base from the leather. It is glued on, but a I just pried it off with a tiny screwdriver. Start with the tabs and then work your way around from the corners.





When it is off is should look like this:



Step 3. - Remove the stitches. Be sure to go under the stitch and be careful not to poke a hole in the leather. The stitches will need to be removed from both the outside and inside of the boot.



Step 4. - Sew. Use the holes left over from when the stitches removed. The trick is to start from the inside of the boot with the SECOND hole and sew it backward to the first hole. Then go underneath up through hole 3 and back through the hole. Then up through hole 4 and back through 3 and so on. Sometimes it can be hard to push the needle through the leather, that's why I suggested a thimble. Also if it is really hard, check to make sure there is no black thread stuck in the holes. See the pictures below.



And Backward through previous hole...



Step 5. Repeat otherside with light blue.



Step 6. Now zig-zag the dark blue. Note that these stitches DO NOT go through the holes (other than at the two ends), just under the light blue and red thread in an every other pattern. Note, I chose not to pull the zig-zags tight (like the steering wheel), but you can. Again, preference.



When it is done, it should look like this:



Step 7. Repeat on the other sides.

Step 8. Re-glue the boot to the base. Use a nail file or sandpaper to rough up the base an little so the glue grips. I used Krazy Glue and it worked fine.

Step 9. Re-install and drive.

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