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1. I have a 91 9c1, what are the years of Bonneville seats that will fit? (according to Dave Walmbolt's page he is only quotes 93-95) are these the only years?(if there are others please post your answers for future refernces)
1A. BandGBodies and Sherlock9C1 states that 91-99 type seats should fit easily....Sherlock9C1 also says that any car on the same platform as the Bonneville (i.e. Park Avernue, Buick LeSabre and Delta 88/ Regency) will all work as well....

2. My 91 has manual seats on both sides...(in the most simple terms possible) what will I have to do in order to make power seats fit in my car?
2A. 94MI9C1 says that the easiest method for this conversion is to find SS rails and they will bolt right in to the car with minor corrections.....The other way is to modify the Bonneville rails..thanks Sherlock9C1

3. what is the process for adding power? (once again please be very simple in explanations, I've done many searches and most or all post go off topic 3-4 times before answering this question leaving me and many others who are in or have been in the position very confused.)
3A. BandGBodies and 94MI9C1 says that the easiest way to add power is to take at least 6" of the harness from the Bonneville in which you got the seats and splice them into your electrial system.....I have seen websites with harness adapters for this particular swap

4. My local pick and pull has a large variety of Bonneville seats to choose from, the only problem is that you have to take them out yourself.....does anyone know the exact process of removing bonneville seats? ( I've joined the Bonneville forum for this info as well and will link when I receive or search out some info)
4A.There should be 2 bolts in the front and 2 in the back.

5. Most pick and pulls (all here in VA.) take the car batteries out of the car and it is impossible to adjust the seats for proper removal. Ive heard some one say something about a battery pack, what is this and how do I use it to move the seats during the removal process?
5A. BandGbodies says to use a battery pack to give the car temporary power in order to move the seats back and forth. 94MI9C1 says that you can also use the battery pack from a cordless drill and a wire jumper to give the harness enough power for adjustment, and then removal....

94MI9C1

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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Kalamazoo, MI
Posts: 2,756




I don't really see why you wouldn't be able to adapt the seats to your car. As long as you have buckets on both sides, you shouldn't have a problem.

Now I am not really certain how the internal wiring is with your car or any 91 for that matter but I am assuming that they are pretty much the same.

First to integrate the power seats you are going to have either modify the power seat rails on the bonny seats or get a set of SS bucket rails, the SS rails will bolt right in. If you get a set of SS rails all that you will have to do to the bonny seats is drill new mount holes in the seat base itself and mount to the SS rails.

What I found on mine is that I have Bonnie six ways, at least the driver is, and a manual version on the passenger. The passenger on mine was the easiest to do as all you have to do is drill out the back mount brackets on the rail, move the brackets exactly one hole forward, drill a new hole and bolt bak to the rail.
Now the power versions are a little trickey, but you can do it. I drilled the brackets off the back, put the seat in the car with it jacked all the way up, put the brackets on the floor mounts and positioned the seat how it needed to be and marked where the bracket sat on the rail. Pulled the seat out drilled new holes and I actually riveted mine back on.
This is the manual rail to give you an idea if you went this route,

This is the six way power rail on my drivers side,


Once you see it you will know what I am talking about. On the power seats as you can tell they mount to the floor with two bolts.

As far as power if you look under the bonnie seats at the bone yard you will find a connector with two wires going into it orange and black. Orange is power and black is ground, you should be able to use just a cordless drill battery to run the seat up where you need it to go to get it out. Just use some jumper wires from the battery which should be marked positive with a + and negatve with a -, run the jumpers to the connector that goes to the seat and you should be all good. You will first moveseat all the way up and back, remove the black plastic caps covering the with a philips screwdriver, pull the nuts off 13mm. Next run the seat all the way forward, remove the black caps back there to, and there will be 2- 13mm nuts holding the backs down. Next with it all the way forward you will have to pull the bolt out of the buckle assembly for the seat belt, I dont remember the torx size, but just buy a cheap set that is very large T45 or T50 comes to mind. And that is it.
For power in the car you are going to have to find if in the fuse panel if you have the power seat option circuit breaker installed. Mine was there and I didn't have any power seats when I bought the car. The connector for the end of the breaker in my car is lower portion of the forward door sill under dash, by the brake handle. Again I am not sure if a 91 is like this but I don't think that they changed very much over the years. You will find a 6 pin connector with a thick orange wire in it, splice into this wire via, soldering you new wire onto it. Use the ground terminals that are in the same spot there where the connector is at, I ran ten gauge to power the seat, it is overkil but that is a good thing.
If you need any other help with this let me know and I can try to help you with the best of my knowledge.
Here is a pic of mine with the Bonnie console installed out of the same car.


I knew I had a picture of where the wire harness routes up where I was talking about. Here it is.


Here is a new pic of the console, it still isn't finished but I had to do a small mod to it.
If you will notice the stick is different :)



 

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From sherlock9c1:

The seats you want are out of '92-99 model year Pontiac Bonnevilles. There were three different styles of seats:
60/40 split bench (Came in base Bonnevilles and perhaps some SE's).
40/40 buckets (SE and some SSE trim levels), cloth or leather.
40/40 leather buckets with the seat control in the center console (SSE and SSEi trim).

I would venture to say that ALL of the Bonneville seats are more comfortable than any B-body seat I have sat in. I had a charcoal-colored cloth 60/40 bench in my 9C1 for 5 years and they were great seats. I only got rid of them because they are not ideal for long trips for people with a long torso. The most desirable seats are the last ones I listed, out of the SSE and SSEi trim levels. They are fantastic seats, great for long trips. They are referred to on this forum as "12-way" seats, although I can never get the math to add up that way, and the Bonneville forum calls them "9-way" seats due to the controller having 9 buttons. The other seats, if power, are referred to as "6-way" seats.

Electrically, the 6-way seats are easy to deal with - just run a power and ground to the seats, and you're done, since the seats have integrated controls. My Caprice 9C1 had manual seats, so I ran a power and ground wire to each seat and I was set. GM wires follow this convention: Orange is power, Black is ground. There's a good ground connection next to the parking brake release lever underneath the carpet. Look around for a thick Orange wire that you can splice off of to use. If your b-body already has power seats, you can also mount the Bonneville seat frames to your B-body rails/tracks and you're done. Or, you may even be able to plug the B-body power seat control harness into the Bonneville seat harness, the connectors look identical. Whenever you add electrical equipment to your car, always always always make sure you put in a fuse of an appropriate amperage, right where you tie off from the existing wiring harness. 15 or 20 amps ought to be fine. 9C1s have an auxiliary fuse panel behind the carpet/rubber floor behind the brake pedal. That's where I tied mine in.

Electrically, for the 12-way seats, when you're in the junkyard, you MUST get the harness that runs under the carpet between the seats and to the center console, and the controller in the center console. There's maybe 30 wires that run between each seat and some are the same color, so do NOT cut them as you remove them.

At some point during the model year run 92-99, probably around '95, they did change the design of the 12-way seat electrical system; some seats have a power and ground (orange and black) connector at BOTH seats, some only have one on one side. This is another reason why you need to get the seats as a pair along with the wiring harness and controller. The other problem is that finding the wiring harnesses or underseat brain boxes separately is nearly impossible now, so avoid the line of thinking that says "ooh, well this one's only missing XYZ" or "the wiring harness is cut on the passenger side but the rest is in good shape." It took me 8 months to find a replacement part I needed. If you find a great set where the controller in the center console is missing, that's a different story as the controllers are identical throughout the entire model year run and show up on ebay periodically.

For removing the seats in a junkyard, there's a 15mm nut on the front of each leg, and 1 or 2 13mm nuts on the rear of each leg. A phillips-head screw holds a plastic cover over each foot. Save these covers and you can use them in your b-body. For moving the seats, I bring my cordless drill battery and a wiring harness I made. For the 6-way seats, you can hook up to the power connector and then move the seat forward and backward to get the bolts out. For the 12-way seats, I've always disconnected the motor harnesses and directly powered the proper seat motor to move the seats forward and backward. If you do decide to power the 12-way seats through their normal orange/black wiring, BE SURE TO HOOK UP THE POLARITY CORRECTLY - if you get it backwards, you will damage the controller and destroy the brain box under the driver's seat. Been there done that. One last point of caution - be very very careful when using a battery to power the seats - always have a fuse in the line or use really light gauge wire so it self-destructs if it short circuits. I had an incident where the two wires on my lawnmower battery touched while I was working inside a car in a junkyard and it almost set the car on fire and gave me 2nd-degree burns as the wires instantly melted all the insulation and became red hot. This happened in 3 seconds; yes, that quick.

Just as a point of note - The Bonneville, Buick LeSabre, Park Avenue and Oldsmobile 88/98/Regency are all the same platform, so if you happen to like the seats in any of these cars, these same physical directions apply. For what it's worth (FWIW) I have also swapped '98 Bonneville seats into an '87 Olds Delta 88 which was the same "platform" but the previous body style; they were bolt-in.

Don't worry about the integrated seatbelts on the seats - there's one 10mm bolt that you undo, and then drill out two rivets, and they come right off. Throw them away and use your b-body seatbelts.

Rails: You can modify and use the Bonneville power seat rails (see below). You could use any b-body power rail out of any B-body '91-96 (SS, Caprice, Roadmaster, Fleetwood, and they're interchangeable side to side as well), but they don't have integrated controllers, whereas the 6-way power bonneville seats have the controls right in the seat. If your b-body doesn't have a power seat (regardless of which side), it's probably easiest to grab the power Bonneville seat AND rail from the junkyard, then just run power and ground to it and you're done. If you really want to, you can find and buy a used B-body window switch assembly that has power seat controls, get the harness, thread it through from the door to the vehicle, and get a "factory" setup, but it's a lot of work. I don't know if the Bonneville and B-body rails are identical electrically.

From a space perspective, a couple of things to be aware of:
1. The bonneville seat rail mounting points are identical to the B-body EXCEPT that the spacing between the front and rear legs is around 1.625" longer. If you want to use the Bonneville seat rails, you would need to account for this. The quick and dirty way is to bend the front seat mounting legs backwards under the rail and mount them, but I don't recommend this for anyone over 5'8" as it moves the seat forwards. The second method is to build adapter plates to correct the mismatch in the back of the seats. I recommend the second or third method; I made adapters out of a strip of 3" wide 3/16" steel I got from Home Depot. The third method is to modify the rear legs of the Bonneville rails by drilling out the rivets and re-locating the legs forward the appropriate amount. Just be aware that in a frontal impact crash, whatever you use to secure these rear legs must be strong enough to keep the seat from throwing you forward into the windshield. That's why I built adapter plates out of 3/16" steel instead.
2. Be aware that the Bonneville seats will NOT be exactly centered with the B-body steering wheel. It can be tricky to fix this; I did it once by adding crossbars between the rail and the seat frame and then drilling new mounting points to center it, but it was a lot of work for something you can get used to.
3. The passenger side seat in my cars always seem to interfere with the floorpan on the right side. It's not a deal breaker, just a fact of life.

In terms of seat covers, the cars are so old now that the driver's seat is always worn out and the passenger seat is fine. It is possible to swap the seat covers. Be aware that it is not fun. I have put an SE passenger leather seat cover over an SSE driver's seat, and it works fine. They're not visually identical (the seatback rears are different) but nobody has noticed this so far in my car. You will have to modify the seat frame a bit, but it's doable. I have never seen a car in junkyard that didn't have the driver's seat worn out; so when I picked up a set of 12-way seats, I bought the complete set, then found another bonneville with the 6-way leather seats where the passenger seat was in mint condition, and bought that seat too. Once I got them home, I swapped the old driver's seat cover and base foam out and built a good driver's seat. In case you love cloth seats, they never made cloth 12-ways, but you can put the cloth covers over the 12-way seats if you really want to. Use zip-ties instead of hog rings when reassembling the seat. 100x easier.

Be aware that for the cloth seats, the fabric texture was tied to color for some reason; I have never liked the corduroy cloth material they used for the tan seats, but the charcoal (black) material is very nice, and it is extremely durable.

Lastly, in one of my old posts, I mentioned that the 12-way seat rails are not interchangeable due to the power tilt mechanism that the 12-ways have that the 6-ways don't. This is not correct - you can mount the 12-way seats on any rail you want. The power tilt motor is built into the seat frame and not the base.
 

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Do you have any pics of the console as a finished product???Thanks
 

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In case you love cloth seats, they never made cloth 12-ways, but you can put the cloth covers over the 12-way seats if you really want to. Use zip-ties instead of hog rings when reassembling the seat. 100x easier.

I know this is an old thread, but I just wanted to correct one thing here for the masses. There WERE factory cloth 12 way seats. They only came in 92, and maybe 93 cars, and are pretty rare. here is a picture of a factory set:






Another thing you need to be aware of when putting 6 way covers on 12 ways is that the side bolsters will be hindered in their movement. You can see in this last picture how on the 12 ways, the side bolster is not actually attached to the back of the seat, which allows it to move freely. If you are ok with this limited movement, then it's not a bad swap. Otherwise, you'll want an AL7 seat.
 

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I just wanted to add some troubleshooting advice in case anyone runs into the problem I did. I installed the AL7 seats into my 9C1 and ended up burning up some traces in the controller switch for some reason. I went in and did some diagnostics and wanted to report what I had found. First off, the air bladder circuitry (lumbar and side bolster) is essentially independent from the seat position adjuster circuitry.

When you run power to these seats, you should attach the power wires to a 30A fuse per the Bonneville Factory Service Manual (FSM) as GM did. Note that max current draw happens during “seat raise” or “seat lower” mode when both the front and rear lift motors stall out simultaneously. Separately, the control switch gets a hot lead source with a fuse value of 15A. Since 15A was enough to burn up the traces on the control switch, I put a 5A fuse in place during my troubleshooting and began monitoring current levels.

Seat Position Motor Circuitry
Once you attach power and ground to each of the seats’ orange and black connectors, the seat control switch activates those motors by selectively grounding pins in 10-pin (blue) connector harness (with one pin missing) that goes from the switch to the seat position motor control box. So all you need to the switch is a ground to the control switch and the seat position functionality is active. I monitored current through those signal wires from the switch and it’s about 0.2A max, so if your switch and position control box is working right, you shouldn’t have any problems with traces burning up. One other note – although the Bonneville FSM specifies a 5V regulator attached to the control box signal inputs, I saw around 11.1V in all leads. I verified this across two boxes I had. Just an FYI.

Seat Air Bladder Circuitry
If you put BAT+ (12V hot) on the orange feed wire to the control switch, you will then be able to activate the air bladder functionality. The control switch selectively provides BAT+ to directly activate relays inside the air valve box under each seat to drive the air functions. A pump motor (round canister with two pins in its connector) is located under the front of the passenger seat. I saw 0.4A continuous while the air pump was in operation for lumbar, and 0.7A continuous for the side bolsters, and 0.14A once the internal pressure limit switch had tripped (whether high or low).

Final Culprit of Burned Traces: undetermined
What I finally found out was happening is that I was getting an intermittent 15A surge on the lower and middle lumbar functions. It happened with the passenger seat but may have also happened with the driver’s seat. The 5A fuse saved the control switch from any burned traces, but after replacing the fuse twice (with 10A fuses), I eventually couldn’t make the problem happen anymore and then the air pump motor slowly died (so now I need to troubleshoot that too). My next step is to take the air valve box and motor under the passenger seat apart and look for any obvious reason for a short like rust or moisture. I may also have a chafed wire in the body wiring harness between the seats which is intermittently grounding.

Hope this helps anybody in this boat. For what it’s worth, it is possible to solder jumpers to the traces on the back of the control switch to regain functionality but it’s tedious and time-consuming. I would recommend fusing the hot lead to the control switch at 5A or 10A to protect it in case of a malfunction in the air bladder circuitry.
 

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Bonnie seat help

After about a year of owning these seats getting them recovered and installing them in the car there is a slight problem. The drivers seat moves back/forward but the lumbar and side bolster functions don't work at all. The opposite for the pass seat, the lumbar and the side bolsters work but no movement front/back. The wire hook up was simple(so at least I thought). I need a little help from you seat gurus :confused:
 

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One update that may help - I find that the power recline mechanism on the 12-way seats tends to get slow and eventually seize up over time. The trick is to loosen up the mechanism with a penetrating oil such as Kroil or PB blaster, then regrease the threads. Navy Lifer's "ceramlub" purple grease works very well for this job.

The power tilt mechanism uses a ballscrew type mechanism; the motor drives a worm gear acting on a ring gear that then draws the threaded rod in or out. The last two sets of seats I worked on had no lubricant left on the threads.

The easiest way to unstuck them is to remove all the seat bolts and tilt the seat back in place (in the car). Then spray the ballscrew mechanism with penetrant and let it sit for half an hour. Then, use the seat controller to work the mechanism back and forth until it begins to move. Do NOT sit there applying power to a stopped motor - once it quits moving, switch directions. Like starter motors, these motors are NOT setup with cooling so they are vulnerable to overheating with continuous duty / heavy load.

Once it's moving, give the threaded rod a light skim coat of grease (I used Harper's fancy purple brake caliper grease because it is lightweight and temperature stable), then run the seats completely up and down several times to distribute the grease.
 

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For power in the car you are going to have to find if in the fuse panel if you have the power seat option circuit breaker installed. Mine was there and I didn't have any power seats when I bought the car. The connector for the end of the breaker in my car is lower portion of the forward door sill under dash, by the brake handle. Again I am not sure if a 91 is like this but I don't think that they changed very much over the years. You will find a 6 pin connector with a thick orange wire in it, splice into this wire via, soldering you new wire onto it.


Ok, so I located the connector that is mounted to the body, just behind the e-brake pedal. It is a six way connector, it has a orange wire and a orange with a black tracer on it. The odd thing is, there is not orange wires coming out of the other end of the connector that receives the the orange wires. I am just trying to clarify that I have located the same connector that you are referring to. The car is a 96 SS, and for the most part is completely gutted. So, I am using a jump box to do what tasks I can. The seats work as they should while out of the car, so no issues there. Maybe get a picture of where you tagged in to the harness at? I think it would be the best for anyone else doing this swap. Thanks for you help.
 

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i want to clear this up in the sticky because i get diff info the more i research... i am switching form 12 way (9 way) bonnie seats to 6 ways because i want to add back the seat controls on the doors... what i need clarified is the proper way to hook up the controls to the door. is it as simple as unplugging from the controls on the bottom of the seat and rerouting them to the door switches? are there pix and directions on doing this? should be simple.... right?
 

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i want to clear this up in the sticky because i get diff info the more i research... i am switching form 12 way (9 way) bonnie seats to 6 ways because i want to add back the seat controls on the doors... what i need clarified is the proper way to hook up the controls to the door. is it as simple as unplugging from the controls on the bottom of the seat and rerouting them to the door switches? are there pix and directions on doing this? should be simple.... right?
Correct. If you look at the Caprice Seat Circuit Schematic, 12V+ and Ground are run to the Door Switches, then the other 6 Wires (ONLY) run from the individual Door Switches directly over to the Individual Power Rails.

More info on this in post 11 and how I wired mine up when I added Pwr Seats to my car. I also have the 6 Way Bonnies up front and just used Caprice/Impala Rails and Switches in their stock location.

http://www.impalassforum.com/vBulletin/showthread.php?t=1265217
 

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Great info. Picking up a 95 SS with shredded front seats - and now Bonnies aren't that easy to find anymore.
all really depends on the color, 6 or 12, and cloth vs leather.
picked up a pair of 12 ways a month ago. driver was a bith thrashed. month before that grabbed a mint set of dark grey 6 ways . i see them up here all the time in varying conditions.
 

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It seems that the junkyards don't have them anymore around here - however - it also seems that a new way to go is to buy a whole Bonneville for $500 and use the seats and a few more things. I need to run a search and see what can be used on our cars from 92-99 Bonnevilles...this is off topic, but I saw someone on here doing a nice write-up on the digital Roadmaster heater controls in an Impala - the Bonneville controls look almost identical...and a few months down the road I see myself converting the SS Interior to Pontiac-looks...
 
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