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Lowering Seat for Tall Drivers


[i]By Juan Laguna.[/i]

Background:

There is not a lot of headroom for taller drivers in the 2G Eclipse/Talon's, especially if you have a sunroof or intend to wear a helmet while racing. Not everyone has $500 for a good aftermarket adjustable seat. I'm over 6'4" myself, and I figured it was possible to modify the seat brackets to give almost an extra inch of headroom. Thanks to Mike Welch at Road Race Engineering, who did most of the design and fabrication for this mod.

Note that this only applies to the non-electric seats.


Equipment List:

- 14mm socket
- razor blades
- welder
- some 3/32" - 1/8" plate steel
- some type of power cutting device capable of cutting through fairly hard steel
- drill press (basically some way to bore holes in the steel for the bolts)


Procedure:

- Take out the seat. You'll need to disconnect a little connector under there, which took me a while at first. (I eventually cut off some of the plastic on the retaining tab. Just enough so that it still catches but comes off with only a little tug).
- Separate the rear attachment brackets. They are held on by some pretty big rivet things, so you're gonna need a power tool of some kind. We used a rotary grinder with about a 2" disc.
- Make up the new brackets out of the plate steel. Mike used the stockers as sort of a template to get the hole for the bolts in the right place. Basically, you need to figure out the right angle so that the hole you need to drill for the attachment bolts will end up in the right place.
- Tack weld the new brackets to the seat rails. Check to make sure that the bolts will go in properly by test mounting the seat. Securely weld the brackets to the frame rails.
- Grind off any weld beads that get in the way of the mechanism. (Do NOT badly cut yourself with the grinder at this point, like I did)
- Cut the head of the left rear bolt down, almost by half.
- Cut the inside part of the of the right top rail to about three inches in so that the rails clear the bolt head when you move the seat back.

Easier to diagram than describe:


- cut it from the back forward about 3 inches or so. It is hardened steel, so its gonna be tough, especially given the tight working space.

- final result, viewed from the side:



- There is a ridge in the floor panels where the rear mounts bolt in. Note where the seat tracks will go. Since it will be lower, the rails will hit these areas when you move the seat back. Get a big hammer and pound the hell out of these areas. Mike assures me these aren't structural areas, other than for the seat. The carpet is pretty cheap and it all rips up when you do this. Its worth it to just cut it out from the affected areas with a razor blade. Consider that the seat will cover it up when you're done, so don't worry about the looks too much.
- There is a curved metal part on the bottom of the seat itself where your butt goes. I flattened this out a bit.
- Install the seat and try to slide it back. It won't go all the way back at first.
- Feel with your fingers where it is catching.
- Remove the seat again. Get the hammer out and start pounding.
- Repeat the last three steps about oh, 10 times till you get it right.
- You'll probably need to cut out some more carpet strips along where the seat rails will go.


Comments:

- I gained noticeable headroom with this. I also feel a bit more "in" the car when driving now. Another nice thing is that I can make the seat back a little more vertical (for better posture) and still fit. The lower seat cushion is of course cranked down as far as it goes.
- the front of the seat bottom will be angled up compared to the rear. This seems to support my legs better.

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Cars \ Modifications \ Image \ Interior \ Interior_Appointments \ Seating \ Lowering Seat for Tall Drivers


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Document statistics: Last modified on 2008-03-04 05:46:50 by DarkOne


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