August 6, 2010
While snowmobile seats are constructed better than ever to resist water intrusion, the cushions on sleds from about five years back and prior — especially the old wooden-based versions — inherently end up damp from melted snow. Or, maybe your sled sunk when you tried to cross open water. Since we’re in the midst of the hottest, sunniest days of summer, now is a good time to hire Mother Nature to help dry the seat.
Remove the seat assembly from the sled and then take off the cover to expose the foam, which is, essentially, a giant sponge. Remove the taillight assembly and separate the foam from the base.
For the next step you’ll need a truck, two pieces of plywood and an assistant. Place the seat foam between the plywood sheets and drive the truck over the assembly a few times to squeeze out the water. Your helper will hold things in place and mop up the water as it wrings out. Do this step several times.
With a majority of the water squeezed out, elevate the seat on a 5-gallon bucket or similar setup and leave it outside during the day. Radiant heat from the sun will be effective to pull moisture out of the foam. This might take several weeks or longer, but it’s early August, so there’s a lot of time before the snow will fly again. Just make sure you don’t leave it out in the rain or under automated sprinklers, otherwise you’ll be right back to where you started.
An option after the weather turns cool is to put the seat foam over a wood-burning stove so that warm, dry air can restore the cushion to a drier state. Drying a seat takes patience and persistence, which is why now is a good time to get started.
August 6, 2010