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Seat height adjustment


mender
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I'm doing a cage and seat installation and my usual solution of having a substantial rake on the seat adjusters isn't going to accommodate the range of drivers' leg length and torso height. Inseams of three are about 33" with one at 38", and torso height variance is about 6". Of course the guy with the long legs has a short torso!

 

Options:

1. Low profile power seat adjuster (Corvette?). That should have the range needed.

2. Manual seat adjuster with manual height adjustment (VW?). The one I'm thinking of has a lever that ratchets the seat up.

 

Issues:

1. Movement in a crash. I haven't heard much about either power or manual seat adjusters failing. Anyone?

2. Seat back brace. Normally an adjustable seat back brace slides in a tube and has a pit pin to lock it; that works fine if the seat only has fore-aft movement but for height adjustment that's going to get complicated.

 

Thoughts? Suggestions? 

Edited by mender
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If the VW one is compatible with your floor, that seems like the most straightforward option.  My ioport? seatback brace could pivot around the crossbar... I made a new tube for it that I just drilled at the two required stops.

 

The nerdy engineer in me wants to design some kind of cool trapezoidal double latching pivot that gives you a high/rearward and a low/forward combination of locking points...

 

Hmmm, off to the patent search, this could be a good one ;-)

Edited by Gearhead_42
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I strongly recommend just setting the seat in a fixed position and making other adjustments to accommodate. My team has a similar problem and we considered many, many configurations before just fixing the seat. It’s not ideal but we are all able to drive the car well and for up to 2hrs per stint. 

 

We run an e30 and we have a 5’3”/100lb girl and a 6’5”/200lb guy (me) but we don’t use a slider or height adjustment. We set the seat as low as possible then we position it as close as I can be while still being able to heel-toe and left foot brake. We checked that the small driver was able to press the clutch fully every time and that was that. We may make small adjustment in the future but I don’t see us ever adding a slider.  

 

When I’m in the car I remove the bottom seat pad. When the small driver is in she puts it back and runs some extra pads or an insert. 

 

Just let everyone be slightly unhappy together...

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The other option that I'm considering is individual seat inserts from expanding foam. That would solve most of the problems.

 

We've been using sliders at a 20 degree angle plus removable foam padding for a couple of us skinny butt drivers, worked well because we all had similar proportions despite the height differences. Different team and car for this one.

 

 

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You can use multiple steering wheels with different spacers on an NRG or similar hub setup.

 

Motorized seat adjusters won't work for your driver change while the car is shut off for fueling.

 

I urge you to NOT add seat [back] padding. I cracked a rib when we had an extra inch of foam in the back of our seat and suffered a side impact. Instead of being well within the containment seat, my ribs were on the edge of our nice OMP seat.

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The problem isn't with the steering wheel, it's the distance to the pedals and the need for two of the drivers to be able to see over the dash without having the other two drivers close to the roof. Granted about the power, should be plenty of time to move the seat either before or after fueling.

 

I'm also concerned about excess seat padding.

 

Good discussion and suggestions, please continue!

Edited by mender
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On our team, we have 3 guys that are 5'8" if we stretch and 2 guys that are 6'4". Like you, I had to use sliders and an adjustable seat back brace, and make rails with about a 2" rake. 

 

Your guy with the long legs and the short torso will probably have to use a seat cushion in addition. 

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We are going through that right now on the VW Beetle we use the stock slide and a seat adjustable backstop. With the new build 2000 Audi TT we have our hands full with seat and cage.

One driver is 6.4 and my wife is 5 ft 100 LB. The TT seat racks are what you should use both slides have nice pin locks and you could use the seat height adjuster if you need to. 

We had to cut the floor in the back too lower the seat in the back to fit the 6.4 guy with the angle now it works right for all drivers without a rear adjuster. 

Bob Mann

www.DRVOLKS.com

bobtec@comcast.net

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Just got back from touring the local Pick n Pull. I was scouting for potential height adjusters and confirmed that the VW one is probably the best (ratchet up and down, very positive and easy to repeatably set to a specific height, low profile).

 

I found one in a Volvo that separately adjusted the front and rear of the seat, a manual with the same range as a typical power seat but it didn't look substantial enough. 

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