I have been looking for a blue shell for ages for my living room and I found quite a battered one on ebay in america, it had holes drilled in the middle, terrible grey paint on the rear and missing shocks. Soooo I bought it at a reasonable price, but still had to pay an extra £20 on top because the customs charged me, even though it was sent as a gift. Anyhows, it arrived looking worse than I thought, but I new that I could lovingly restore it. Here are the pics in its bought condition.
So then I went onto trusty ebay and purchased some new shocks
then decided that I would really like the cats cradle base, which was proving harder to find. Justin at http://www.pink-flamingos.co.uk/ did me the honour of ordering one in for me.
Now onto the chair, I did a browse on the internet and found these two blogs about restoring the chairs, which both worked out to be pretty good. I only changed a few things and used a few British products.
First thing was to sand the paint off the reverse, this was done outside by hand with various different grades of sand paper and finished off with a wet sand (it only took and hour and half and as said on the blogs is very itchy. I had to give it a light sand around the Herman Miller stamp as this too would have been sanded off. Finally it revealed a lovely blue fiberglass colour. The front of the shell had over the years gone to an almost aquamarine blue colour.
mmm... to fill those holes.... what to do.. I basically made a paste of wall filler, glue and poster paint to match colour, mixed it all together and filled the holes. I waited for it to dry and then sanded it off the front and then give the front of the shell also a light wet sand, they where solid and only a slight indentation to show there was holes there.
On the previous blogs they had used PENETROL to bring back the colour of the fiberglass and seal it with a glossy finish. I couldn't find this in the UK but after much searching on the internet found a boat substitute called OWATROL OIL. I also tried LINSEED OIL but it didn't quite restore the colour or seal it as well as the OWATROL OIL. I then left it for two days to dry. I glued the new mounts on and then fitted the base and here we have it!!!!!!!.
Finally I bought a Harry Bertoia seat cushion from ebay in america again, they fit almost perfectly on the chairs, truthfully as much as I love these chairs they are not that comfortable for sitting in!! and now its in my living room.