I decided that I would replace the foam rubber base in the drivers front seat, as the side squab thingy had got a bit worn down and didn't look quite right. I was very lucky to find a complete seat base, new old stock, for sale so I bought it fairly cheaply. It was out of a Vogue Anniversary or something like that, I think. Anyway, it had green leather whereas mine is Light Stone [or Lightstone], but as I was keeping my original leather I wasn't bothered about the new seat cover. My leather is in good nick so I didn't want to make it obvious that I had replaced the foam base.
It turned out to be an interesting job, and not very difficult. There are a few things that needed a bit of thought about. For instance, reading RAVE says go under the seat and unplug the electrical connectors. As I found out there is quite a difference between different seat bases. On the Vogue seat base, when I ordered it, I could see that it had the same set-up of motors as mine, with a mounting plate with the cable connectors clipped to it, but when I looked under my existing seat it turned out that mine has an outstation bolted to the base.
So the new seat base has only cable connectors and two yellow relays for the motors but mine has a full outstation box with many more connections, including the seat back controls. Therefore, I couldn't just remove my leather seat cover and put it onto the new seat base, I had to remove both foam rubber seat bases and then remove the leather from both and swap them around. The most difficult bit is getting all the hog rings out, but when I read up about replacing them a lot of people on different sites have used tie-wraps in place of metal hog rings. As I don't have either hog rings or hog ring pliers, which would have meant waiting for them to be delivered if I ordered them off the internet, I decided to use tie-wraps.
Being in the electrical trade for many years I have a large collection of various sized tie-wraps so I used fairly wide, heavy duty ones and I reckon that they are stronger than the original hog rings but are just as unobtrusive. When you now look at the seat you wouldn't know the difference and the seat is now much firmer than it was.
Another thing I learned was that, as there are a couple of electrical plugs that need to be connected that go into the vehicle wiring system, when you put the seat back in position there is no way you can get you hand in under the seat. For some reason LR decided to mount the outstation under the seat and face the plug connections facing backwards and with the plug clips, which you need to press down to release the plugs, facing upwards right under the seat. So to unplug them you need to unscrew the outstation so that you can turn it upside-down to unplug, but when you refit the seat you put it roughly in position and then put two wooden blocks, or any other support, and lift the back of the seat right up. Then you can get your hand under the seat to reconnect the plugs that are coming from the wiring loom in the car.
As there are three axles running across the seat base, from side to side, there is no room to work under the seat. On the Vogue seat base it is completely different as there is no outstation and therefore quite a bit of room to get your hand underneath.
The only other pain in the ass are the fir tree fasteners that hold the ABS plastic surrounds, valances, in position. I found that they are very difficult to remove and can't really be used again to refit the valances. As they are NLA [no longer available] one just has to look for alternatives. I used the plastic rivet things from a Landrover Defender roof lining which have a body that pushes into the hole and a cap that then pushes into the body, effectively causing the end of the body to spread and grip. But I do suspect that the fir tree fasteners are likely to be available somewhere for newer cars made by somebody else.
The end result is that you can't tell that the seat has been apart, everything works as it did before, but the base is now firmer with more shape than it was. There are a few posts elsewhere that suggest using the seat base from the passenger side seat but I did email a few breakers and the passenger seats that they all had were no better than my existing drivers seat so that wouldn't have been worth it. And, I believe that there are a couple of retrim companies willing to make on but for nowhere near what I bought my new, old stock seat base for. I paid £100 including delivery, whereas, if you could get one but they are NLA, a new one would cost around nearly £300 if I remember correctly. I'm not quite sure whether the motors are inter-changeable though as they appear to be wired a bit differently. I wonder whether this is to do with memory option that I have on my seats.