How do I remove the seat part of an office chair from its support post?


I have a couple 5-year-old inexpensive office chairs(same make/model) in my house.
On one of them, the seat back has been broken for several years, so it just flops loosely and offers no support.
On the other, the gas cylinder (shock absorber) that is the center support post broke so that it won't support my weight. My wife and kids can sit in it okay, but it just drops down under my weight.
I'd like to remove the good seat and back from the chair with the bad gas cylinder and put it onto the other chair, giving me one "whole and good chair" with a working gas cylinder and working back, plus one "totally bad" chair with a bad back and collapsing gas cylinder.
But try as I might, I can't pull the seat from the gas cylinder on either chair. The seats just "drop right on" when being assembled, and I assume that human weight, plus friction, holds them on.
What technique might I use to pull the seats off the cylinders, so I can put the good seat onto the good cylinder?
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Rope the seat to a tree, drive the truck within about five feet of the chair. Use a come along tool, wrapped around the gas cylinder. Do not heat with torch. Hammer is acceptable. Wear safety glasses, leather apron, and rhinstone gloves.
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trader-of-some-jacks wrote:

Impossible to say without seeing it. There are several different ways to attach seats to bases, but most chairs have screws or bolts under the seat holding the base to the seat. I can pretty much guarantee that there is no 'friction fit' assembly involved like in office chairs of old. Same reason they all went to 5-spoke bases- too many people hurting themselves and suing. If it is a cast plastic seat base that drops over the vertical pole, there is some sort of snap fitting or something holding it on. If it was a really cheap chair, maybe they depended on the fresh plastic being flexible, and the 'snap it together' was a one-time thing, like the locking ring on a pop bottle cap. When you bought the chairs, did they come knocked down, or ready to use?
-- aem sends...
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wrote:

The friction fit is pretty common. All the chairs I have bought at Staples are seated this way. I never tried to take one apart, but I have put several together.
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way out of warranty. I was easy to change. I gave the base a rap with a hammer and the cylinder came out. Same with the top.
Gary
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trader-of-some-jacks wrote:

I would recommend disposing of the cheap seats and stopping by a used office furniture dealer to pick up some real office chairs. Fooling around with spring loaded assemblies is not something an inexperienced do it yourselfer should try. There have been reports of those cheaply made Chinese pneumatic office chairs coming apart and injuring someone sitting in them.
TDD
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It is a slight taper fit where the stem meets the base. It is surprising how well bonded the connection is. We've knocked a few of them apart by turning and suspending upside down and smacking the center bottom with a chunk of 4x4. It takes a hard blow to dislodge the taper, right at the point of saying . . . I'm ready to toss it, so just smack the tar out of it.
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On Fri, 11 Sep 2009 20:59:06 -0400, trader-of-some-jacks

Problem solved.
Upon closer examination, I could unscrew the back and the seat from the support mechanism. Both were bolted in with four Allen-head bolts.
Then it was just a matter of bolting good seat on good base, and good back on good seat.
For the failing gas cylinder, I found another idea on the web that I might try - that would be using a hose clamp (like under the hood of a car) around the circumference of the height adjustment post. The down side would be that the height couldn't again be adjusted, but that would permanently keep the chair at the right height.
The chairs, by the way, were the house brand from OfficeMax and cost maybe $65 apiece new. Yeah, I know, nothing to brag about. But they got the job done.
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