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Zimo

Seat Shoulder Harness Openings

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I seem to be having what i believe is a big problem with all the new FIA rated seats. They moved all the shoulder harness openings up too high for people under 5'10ish (I'm 5'5") with these new 2020 seats. 

Make sure you guys are getting strapped in properly with your HANS, I dont believe it works correctly if the harness doesnt fully make contract on the full surface of the unit. 

I reached out to OMP & Sparco about it, waiting to hear back. 

Please someone step in and correct me if I'm wrong. 

Seat Compare 2.jpg

2020-01-16 (3).jpg

2020-01-17.jpg

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Get a sheet of this and cut a pad to fit in the seat bottom and have the short drivers sit on it.  

 

It'll do double duty protecting their tail bone in a wreck, and will get the shoulder in line with the slot.

Screenshot_20200120-123919.png

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The thing i dont like is that i need a 3" lift to get my shoulders up to the minimum dimension. I just talked to pegasus they mentioned making a seat insert but I dont know how I would hold my self up in the seat (~35min) while I let the foam set. 

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If you want to risk a disc rupture in a frontal impact then angle the shoulder harness down from the shoulder.  The shoulder harness isn't there to hold you in the seat in a rollover, that is the job of a properly adjusted lap and sub belt. The neck restraint is designed for frontal impact and the shoulder harness limits the forward movement even with the harness angled up from the shoulder until the angle becomes too extreme. It still contacts the neck restraint and limits forward movement as designed. I suffered an inflamed and bulging disc that was an extremely painful injury from a frontal impact with belts mounted only 2" below my shoulder. You will not see me in a car that does not have an upward angle from the shoulder. I like about 2" above.

 

I wish I had met Bob Booth before I got hurt. He taught me very well how to avoid harness induced injuries.

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9 minutes ago, SpeedMaverick said:

If you want to risk a disc rupture in a frontal impact then angle the shoulder harness down from the shoulder.  The shoulder harness isn't there to hold you in the seat in a rollover, that is the job of a properly adjusted lap and sub belt. The neck restraint is designed for frontal impact and the shoulder harness limits the forward movement even with the harness angled up from the shoulder until the angle becomes too extreme. It still contacts the neck restraint and limits forward movement as designed. I suffered an inflamed and bulging disc that was an extremely painful injury from a frontal impact with belts mounted only 2" below my shoulder. You will not see me in a car that does not have an upward angle from the shoulder. I like about 2" above.

 

I wish I had met Bob Booth before I got hurt. He taught me very well how to avoid harness induced injuries.

If this is why they changed the seats it makes sense. But all the install guides still show it the other way...

FIA: https://www.fia.com/file/58634/download/19427

Schroth: https://www.schrothracing.com/docs/Competition_Instructions.pdf

HANS: https://static.speedwaymotors.com/pdf/451323531.pdf

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Got my answer from BSCI Energy Impact Systems:

Azim,

If your insert is required to be FIA certified, you will need to use sheets of our EC-50 foam to shim yourself up, then use an adhesive such as 3M super 77 to glue the pieces of sheet foam together. After you do this, you will then lightly glue the sheet foam inside the bag before mixing and pouring the chemical. The pieces of sheet foam will become a part of your insert. If your insert is not required to be FIA certified, then we would recommend using sheets of EIS-W18 in place of the EC-50.

 

Thanks,

 

Taylor Stricklin

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As Speedmaverick stated have the flat or slightly above your shoulders. When they are anchored below your shoulders it will crush your back in a frontal impact. Compressing your spine. The holes in your seat look fine and a seat insert is easy to make. Two part foam and a plastic bag. Add the gel foam pad to the bottom to add some height. Be sure to make the insert while wearing your drivers suit too. Foam cures very quickly. 

 

And Bob Booth was a wealth of battle tested safety info. Speedmaverick I’m Glad you had the pleasure of meeting him. To bad it wasn’t before damaging your back. 

Edited by TimS
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I'm not doubting the experience from you guys, but coming from an engineering background its kind of hard to argue against the regulating agencies like the FIA and the HANS and Harness manufacturers. They designed the safety products and tested them. I'm going to assume there was something else wrong with the harness/seat configuration. 

Quote from Schroth install instructions... "Shoulder belts run down from HANS or shoulder to the harnessbar at an angle from 0° to a max of -30°. In no case should the shoulder belt run at an upward angle from the shoulder or HANS to the attachment points."

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48 minutes ago, TimS said:

As Speedmaverick stated have the flat or slightly above your shoulders. When they are anchored below your shoulders it will crush your back in a frontal impact. Compressing your spine. The holes in your seat look fine and a seat insert is easy to make. Two part foam and a plastic bag. Add the gel foam pad to the bottom to add some height. Be sure to make the insert while wearing your drivers suit too. Foam cures very quickly. 

 

And Bob Booth was a wealth of battle tested safety info. Speedmaverick I’m Glad you had the pleasure of meeting him. To bad it wasn’t before damaging your back. 

Thanks Tim, I had the pleasure of working at the SoCal factory in the 90's after he sent me there from the Oakland store. Larry Vilmer was also one hell of a safety guy himself when he ran production. My injury was associated with my broken back in 90. It was the  disc above the vertebra that broke. 

 

You can also use expanding 2 part foam to pour a riser that will work. I use a garbage bag to pour the foam into, for your case the seat bottom and wiggle a slight bit to make it conform to your bottom. Then sit still long enough to form some set but not too long that you sink too deep. I prefer an oversized seat with exoskeleton and a foam pour. I remove from bag and cover with duck tape to stop it from breaking down.  It transfers a lot more feel of what the chassis is doing and it can actually improve lap times. 

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I lived in Sun Valley then and would drop in and talk to Larry and old the seamstress ladies.  The old Filler Safety building.  Bob had set are little team up with a great discount program.  I have used Pyrotect equipment ever since.  I wish I had taken up the offer of a custom suit back in the day.  When I finally get a new suit I will get it there, even though my old friends are not involved or have passed. Im sure we ran accross each other back then.  

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26 minutes ago, Zimo said:

I'm not doubting the experience from you guys, but coming from an engineering background its kind of hard to argue against the regulating agencies like the FIA and the HANS and Harness manufacturers. They designed the safety products and tested them. I'm going to assume there was something else wrong with the harness/seat configuration. 

Quote from Schroth install instructions... "Shoulder belts run down from HANS or shoulder to the harnessbar at an angle from 0° to a max of -30°. In no case should the shoulder belt run at an upward angle from the shoulder or HANS to the attachment points."

 

I see why you would be concerned. You should be. It's your safety at stake.  I have an engineering background myself. I took the exam when I worked for the Dept. of Defense. I took the mechanical engineering exam and scored a 98.  I took on 2 engineers from McDonald-Douglas and embarrassed them with simple logic.  I have ran into industry standards in the past and have influenced their rewrite. I fought with an engineer from Chevrolet Racing that visited our shop with a "Chassis Tech Manual" and proved him and their computers wrong. Not at the time but a few years later, everybody in Nascar was tuning track bars to my idea's of their role in chassis dynamics. So engineers and product manufacturers have been wrong before. I'm just amazed the number of them I have had run ins with. I am not bragging because I still have a lot to learn but I am just making a point about information.

 

Just look at the illustrations you provided and imagine the forces involved. It is really just common sense. The belt will try to level out with force and if the angle is wrong bad things can happen. Remember that stretch is part of the function of the belts. If the angle is too high not enough forward stretch occurs and G forces are increased. If the angle is too low then spinal  compression occurs. The seat should NOT be a factor on belt angle. If the seat changes the angle of the belt in any way it is dangerous. It does a couple of things. One is that it limits stretch to in front of the seat increasing G load. It can cause the belt to come loose on the first impact  If the belt opening is compromised and cause a big problem on a second impact. It can also cause chaffing which limits the life of the belt and you could end up talking to Earnhardt Sr, about your experiences.

 

I'm not telling you what to do, but I did tell you what I will do in my cars because of who and what I know.  Just so you know,  I was following installation  instructions when I got hurt. Bad ones. Bob Booth said I was a damn good " Grassroots Engineer" and that is why he took me out of sales and sent me to production. I hope the information I provided above gives you some things to think about, I have never had a driver injured in a car since I learned this stuff during my time at Bell/Pyrotect. 

 

My driver in the truck series had a bad crash at Nazareth and even with all these safety precautions he almost came out of the seat in a 165 mph side pancake  into the wall and walked away without injury.  Truck needed right side door bars and 2 clips. The seat was what gave and if I got one thing wrong with those belts I might have a different experience to share.

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46 minutes ago, TimS said:

I lived in Sun Valley then and would drop in and talk to Larry and old the seamstress ladies.  The old Filler Safety building.  Bob had set are little team up with a great discount program.  I have used Pyrotect equipment ever since.  I wish I had taken up the offer of a custom suit back in the day.  When I finally get a new suit I will get it there, even though my old friends are not involved or have passed. Im sure we ran accross each other back then.  

 

I remember you telling me that. I had a crush on Eva. She was incredible on a sewing machine and pretty cute too. She managed the sewers. Those ladies were so sweet. They used to bring me home cooked meals because I lived in the old Filler motor home on the side of the building. I was there in 97 and then moved to Charlotte NC in 98.. Larry was the guy that designed the 7 and 8 point harnesses. I saw an episode on Motor Trend with Richard Hammond when he did a burn. The stunt men were all wearing suits that we made. I was really surprised they were still using them almost 20 years later. They even used the ratchet seat belts Larry invented in the stunt Hammond did in a car flip.

 

The 3 Bob's of safety have had a tremendous positive  influence  on racing and the stunt industries. I can't remember Bob's last name that bought Filler and then sold it to Booth. He was a very smart guy too. I was a sponge hanging around with all them guys. I have a suit Larry made me after I moved to NC because my custom suit was stolen. It has a big Pyrotect logo on the back. I was actually the fit model for all the size medium suits when they were redesigning the patterns.  That thing with underwear is 58 seconds TTP (Time to Pain) It works so well that a cool suit is not even a thought. I am a bit disappointed I can't get a Bell helmet from Pyrotect anymore. They just fit a little better than the Pyrotect on my head. But I will get a Pyro to replace my carbon fiber Bell that expired.  Fun times...

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Don't mix formula cars with sedans. A lay down seat has different considerations than a stock car or sedan. One example is the pull up vs. pull down lap belts. A lay down seat does not stress the body the same because the angles are far different. You can use downward angle because once the sub and lap belts get tensioned the next force will  move the upper body upward from the seat instead of forward. Never use a 5 point and use at least a 6 point in a lay down seat. Always use a pull up belt if you sit in a tub because you will never get a pull down tight enough.. The lap and sub belts take up a much higher percentage of the forces in frontal impact and that split sub belt will save your manhood.

 

Everything I talked about is for a 15-20 degree seat back angle. You can use 6 points and pull ups in a sedan, or a formula car.  But 5 points and pull downs are only for sedans. Any belt install instructions that don't consider the type of car, seat and seat back angle MUST be questioned. Any good safety dealer will ask what your set up is before selling you belts.

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I first was introduced to Larry and Bob Booth through a friend who was in the movie business and he used pyrotect for all stunt work. That was the great thing about pyrotect in those days. All equipment was tested in the real world. Suits were set on fire daily, seat belts tested in real crashes. No sleds on a rail. Real people crashing into things and setting themselves on fire. 

 

I just bought a new carbon pyrotect helmet helmet and it fits like my Bell vortex I bought from pyrotect a lifetime ago. 

 

All harness installations are specific to the seat incline and harness type. Most manufacturers should have very specific instructions for installation 

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1 hour ago, TimS said:

Check this link. It gives a good picture of the different angles of the seat and different types of harness. I believe Champcar has this picture in the rule book too 

 

https://www.sfifoundation.com/wp-content/pdfs/guidelines-bulletins/Seatbelt Installation Guide 06-05-12.pdf

 

Its the same as everything else I already posted. But none of them specifically identify the seat layback angle in various configurations.  I've already made my mind up for harness install. And for anyone else wondering the same, Read FIA, Read SFI, Read the harness manufactures guidelines, read your FHR (Frontal Head Restraint) Manufacture guidelines and make up your mind. Undocumented, non-certified opinions are NOT valid sources of information. 

FIA: https://www.fia.com/file/58634/download/19427

Schroth: https://www.schrothracing.com/docs/Competition_Instructions.pdf

HANS: https://static.speedwaymotors.com/pdf/451323531.pdf

 

Another interesting product I just came across for double shoulder belts (Hans & Body). Welds to the harness bar. 

https://www.hmsmotorsport.com/products/double-shoulder-mounting-bracket#2591

 

If anyone has any other documents from a VALID SOURCE they could post on this I would love to read it. 

Edited by Zimo
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When WHAT becomes more important than WHY, Society will degrade into a dumbed down shell of it's formal self.

 

I was once asked by a very smart engine builder in Pro Stock, Do you know the difference between a parts changer and a mechanic? The parts changer knows what he is changing, a mechanic knows why he is changing it. That was a lesson I never forgot.

 

Hey Tim, do you know any of those REAL WORLD users of safety equipment that write papers on their findings? Do they call SFI or do they contact their suppliers and give THEM feedback to make improvements. The ratchet belt that is the standard for stuntmen today isn't SFI certified. A stuntman doesn't use SFI certified belts because they can't get them tight enough to prevent injury. Do they care if their is an SFI patch on their burn suit? No. They only care that the company that made it gets it right.  Why would anyone listen to a guy like me that has this knowledge when you can get a "Qualified Authority" who prints a one size fits all piece of paper that has extremely limited information that is approved by an office building full of lawyers to limit liability?

 

SFI is a testing laboratory. They only investigate real world results AFTER someone is crippled or killed. Do you know why Earnhardt's belts failed. I do. Because SFI worked with the major safety brands so they could inform guys like Larry who shared with me, that could educate others that it was heat so they could inform their customers of install instructions outside of public view. I disagreed with SFI for keeping the cause private, but it was for the safety of Earnhardt's crew that turned into a fatal error.  Because of the death threats on Simpson, it was kept secret. A hole in the floorboard next to the belt leaked exhaust heat and softened the Nylon. Have you ever seen Funny Car belts? They are covered with heat resistant insulation because a driver was killed from belt failure from an engine fire. Did the NHRA work with SFI to create a new standard to mandate insulation BEFORE or after the drivers death? Did I report my injury to SFI. No. A bulging disc that healed is not an injury that SFI considers important.

 

Sorry that my knowledge isn't SFI certified. But that doesn't exist. But what the hell do I know. I only worked right next to the guy who invented the 7 point harness and was involved with all the design considerations. Larry had the VERY FIRST 7 point harness approved by SFI. The idea behind it was the 6 point didn't prevent the lap belt from rolling above the pelvis and cause internal injuries that could rupture the diaphragm and cause suffocation before medical help could arrive to treat it. There were other factors also. It could be it's own engineering paper.  I watched a man die from a ruptured diaphragm in a city street crash and it wasn't pretty. His last whispers were, "I can't breath". He was dead before the EMT's got there... 

 

SFI has a standard for fire suits that are allowed across the country that gives you maybe 3-5 seconds if your lucky until pain that result in first degree burns. Would you accept those standards for your safety just because SFI has set a standard? What I know and most don't, is that SFI standards are designed to avoid permanent crippling injury and death, NOT recoverable injury. If a crash results in a recoverable injury, then the safety equipment is considered to have done it's intended job.  It's up to the individual manufacturers to take matters into their own hands in adjusting recommendations from customer input. The information doesn't always trickle up to the certified testing laboratories. They don't care. You survived, you will recover, end of subject!

 

All you Johnny come lately's that put your safety in the hands of the internet, good luck. This reminds me of the day Bob Booth smacked me on the side of the head and told me to get my face out of magazines and come back to the real world. He was a black belt and he rang my bell. But he was right.

 

Please, no joke, don't listen to me. I don't want the responsibility for others peoples safety. Those of you who still have a brain, consider the why's, especially your own that are logical to you and choose your own what's, based on YOUR best judgement.

 

As Paul Harvey would say, Good Day!

 

Edited by SpeedMaverick
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I couldn’t agree more. Larry had seen the aftermath of more crashes and fires than the SFI and FIA combined. One thing he and Bob both got to see and hear were first hand details from the guys crashing and burning. People crash cars and set themselves on fire for a living. If they got burned or ruptured a disk in there back every time they worked they would not work very often.  I hope you never need your fire suit or your harness or your HANS or your Halo seat. You don’t have to take my word as the gospel or any of our experiences as fact. I would recommend you speak to other racers who have had accidents and then you can understand that the “recommended” way to install a piece of safety gear is not the ONLY way to install it. I do hope no one has to put there gear to the test. 

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I dont know why this was so hard to find but here it is:

FIA Saftey equipment guide Appendix J – Article 253: https://www.fia.com/file/77724/download/20691

 

Looks like I can not use a booster that is higher then 50mm and answers to whole lot of other questions I had. Wish I saw this before I built my cage.

Skip to the end to see harness specific stuff to be applicable on 01.01.2023.

 

TimS and Speedmaverick, Either post a link to a document or I'm not reading a single word you guys are writing. 

Edited by Zimo

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3 hours ago, Zimo said:

TimS and Speedmaverick, Either post a link to a document or I'm not reading a single word you guys are writing. 

 

Proof that Charlotte Iserbyt was right in her book, The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America. Intelligence, common sense and practical experience will be a distant memory. Free will and innovation will some day be limited to the very few who can escape the globalist programmers of human behaviors. I am on her list of Patriotic Americans who still have free will.

 

I have been a Pyrotect dealer since 1998, a safety product developer, safety consultant, fabricator and crew chief in SCCA Pro Racing, and all 3 top series of Nascar although my cup car experience was in the old Winston West series. I have raced full time for nearly 20 years and part time for another 20.

 

All I care about is that I NEVER have to watch anyone from any/your car loaded into an ambulance because they listened to incomplete or bad advice. The first man I watched die was in 1986. I also watched Tom Blackaller that was taken out of a car I built that set a new track record at Sears Point (Sports 2000) be taken away in an ambulance to never be seen again. It was a heart attack but those 2 instances is why I care about driver safety so much. And then my own injury because I installed my belts according to Jaz's instructions instead of my own common sense.

 

If Tom was wearing a NASA suit invented by Bob Booth as a result of his own heart attack in a race car who made a better suit that put less stress on the heart, he might not have died that day. Only a smug donkey-hole would be so disrespectful to someone that has spent the last 30 years of their life learning everything I could so I could help drivers not go through what I have had to witness and experience.

 

I went to Bell Motorsports in Oakland in 1996 for the first time and met Bob Booth. That is where I also met Ken Miles Jr. after Bob offered me a job. Ken swore by Bob's innovations and it was after his telling me about his father's death that I decided to dedicate myself to helping others by learning all I could about driver safety. Bob was in poor health and guys like me and Larry were who could make sure his knowledge didn't die with him.

 

You claim to have an engineering background but are incapable of making a decision without a consensus.  Book smart is not street smart. Therefor, you should stay as far away from building a race car as you can because if you can't listen to someone trying to stop you from seriously hurting or killing yourself, you can't be trusted with the safety of those around you. There are lot of good car builders in this series and I recommend you drive for one of them because I am confident you are not capable of putting a safe car on the track.

 

I can live with myself because if even 1 builder or driver reads this and learned something that will help keep them safer. I've done my job. But I can only help those capable of being helped, You sir, are not!  Take your own advice, don't listen to me because you won't get right what I tell you anyway...

 

 

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In case you didnt read the FIA guidelines i just posted which clearly you didnt. The illustrated shoulder harness mounting is REQUIRED for 2023. Its not longer written as a recommendation. 

 

And I'm not telling anyone to do anything. I'm stating whats in articles from a regulating  safety agency. 

 

Yeah i'm sure everyone here would feel safer in a car thats built for a budget endurance series compared to an FIA regulated series... You know since both have the same budgets, and testing equipment, and resources. 

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