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Thread: BT7 seat rails

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  1. #1
    Jedi Warrior Drone Dog's Avatar
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    BT7 seat rails

    Going to have to order new seat rails soon. Are there any threads I can read on some tricks to extend some leg room for the driver? I am 6-1 and although I have not sat in this car yet, I can sense there is going to be an issue getting my feet in the door when I get in.
    thanks

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    Jedi Knight Lin's Avatar
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    Re: BT7 seat rails

    Scroll down on this link and you will see the way I tilted the driver’s seat in my car. Combined with the slightly smaller steering wheel tilting the seat frame rearward was helpful.
    http://valvechatter.us/?p=2861

    Lin
    1959 AN5 Bugeye - now with my son 😀
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    Jedi Warrior Rob Glasgow's Avatar
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    Re: BT7 seat rails

    I am 6'3" and have never had an issue with leg room in my BT7 using the original location of the seat rails. Everyone is always amazed that I fit into the car.
    I did have an issue with head room when the top was up and also seeing out of the windshield. I was always looking out the top one or two inches, just below the top frame piece. I solved those problems about 35 years ago by modifying the lower sear frames by moving the hinge bolt vertically about 2", allowing the rear sear back to recline several inches. Now with the seat slider in the rear most position, I have plenty of headroom and my view out the windshield is about 4" below the top frame piece. I've included a few photos. The metal piece is about 1" x 2-1/2" X 1/8" thick and is welded to the ear that held the original hinge bolt. I used a carriage bolt for the hinge bolt (same size of the original). Just last year I welded some additional taps to the rear of the lower seat frame to stabilize the seat back. Previously, the seat back only rested on the center tabs of the bottom frame. This modification made a huge difference in the comfort of the driving position. Not sure you can see the difference in the seat back angle in the first shot, but it's has a least 2" more rake than original.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Rob Glasgow

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    Jedi Knight vette's Avatar
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    Re: BT7 seat rails

    Drone Dog, I wouldn't use the ability to enter and exit the vehicle for your reference on positioning the seat, but what I would use is the extension and comfortability of your left leg when you use the clutch. My seat is in the standard location and with the seat slides all the way back I find it the most comfortable for my left leg when using the clutch. In actuality, I find that this position is a tick too far back for the most comfort of use with the clutch but if I move the seat up one notch on the slides then I am too close to the clutch and I feel that at the point where I am slipping the clutch to get the car moving then my knee is too bent and it is not conducive to a smooth operation of the clutch. So having the seat all the way back is more conducive to being able to operate the clutch with just a minimal leg movement.
    With the seat back as far as you can make it and still be comfortable operating the vehicle you will find that is also the best you can get for entry and exit. I have a C5 Corvette that is rather difficult to get into. And I have had friends say that is way too difficult to get into. (therefore they wouldn't own one). My answer is that it is not the getting in and out that makes the experience.... it is what happens after you are in it. Dave.
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    Jedi Knight Healey Nut's Avatar
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    Re: BT7 seat rails

    Re Vette’s reply .
    Remember its a sports car , you dont get in it you put it on !!!
    Treat it like a pair of really nice fitted leather driving gloves once your in the car and put them how you get in and out of it is really irrelevant.
    "If it aint broke ....dont fix it "
    " Thats not an oil leak ..........its a special automatic British rustproofing system "
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    Jedi Warrior Rob Glasgow's Avatar
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    Re: BT7 seat rails

    This post got me thinking about how I enter the car and although I've been doing it for over 50 years, I had to go out at try it. Open door, right leg in, holding onto wheel and rear fender, swing butt into seat and pull left leg into car. When I was 17, I could jump over the closed door and maneuver into the seat, looking quite dashing, a la Le Mans 24 hours. Now I think long and hard about taking the car out to do errands, counting how many stops I have planned and how many times I'll have to get in and out. 3 or 4 stops and I'm taking the Healey, more the 6 stops and the Pickup looks pretty good.
    Rob Glasgow

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    Jedi Warrior Drone Dog's Avatar
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    Re: BT7 seat rails

    yes those knees do not bend quite like they used to. on the TD i had, i used to have to grab the left ankle to pull the foot back enough to get it in. of course it was tight even once i was in that car.
    my question here was based on what i have been able to try. my seat rails are in bad shape with broken studs on them so i can't mount them in the car. i also wanted to wait until i have the engine in to put them in anyway so i am not crawling over them. since i bought the car in boxes i have never sat in it or know exactly how far the seat goes back. but i figured if it was an issue, someone on here has come up with a trick to make it better.

    i do like the tilted seat idea. one thing that killed my back on the TD was sitting up so straight. i may have to try that one after i get the seats in.

  8. #8
    Luke Skywalker
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    Re: BT7 seat rails

    Rob

    I am with you now except I have a right - my left hip is shot and I have to put a straight left leg in first, hang on to the windscreen side support with the right hand and hold the back of the seat with the left and easy my right leg in whilst sliding in. Before I had an ungainly technique of leaning on the trans tunnel and putting my left leg in followed by my right after I had sat down.



    Bob

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    Re: BT7 seat rails

    I'm 6'3" and have come to actually like the driving position: there's adequate leg room (with the stock seating position), and a sort of immediacy of having a steering wheel only inches in front of you. No long-armed limp-wrist-over-the-wheel cruising.

    Though, like Rob describes above, I do have to hunch to see through the windshield.... I've littered more than few hats on the highway stretching my back without a top up.

    As for getting in, it's still easier than a modern Elise!
    https://youtu.be/D8aJkf-VXio

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