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Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: SoBo ()
Date: January 28, 2013 07:10PM

I'd like the added safety of a modern seat with a higher back and headrest for my '65 Monza convertible but I can't find anything I like. The closest I could find so far is the Procar Pro-90 series shown here:

http://procarbyscat.com/seats/Pro-90

Has anyone used these seats or others by this manufacturer? My other thought was to install headrests on my existing seats but I've had no luck finding any and I'm not sure of the required modifications to add them.

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: 65CorsaTurbo ()
Date: January 28, 2013 09:38PM

I eyeballed these same seats a few years ago....A vendor was selling these or very similar ones at a Vair convention (Buffalo ?) They were very comfortable and seemed like they'd be supportive. Summit has them for $260.95. I think they'd look very good and period correct in a vair. Anymore more bolster would make them look too modern.

Bill (B.Y.)
1965 Corsa 180 (under restoration)
1966 500, white/red/110/auto (sold)
1967 Crown V-8 (sold)
Pittsburgh, Pa.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/28/2013 09:39PM by 65CorsaTurbo.

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: SoBo ()
Date: January 29, 2013 10:36AM

65CorsaTurbo Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I eyeballed these same seats a few years ago....A
> vendor was selling these or very similar ones at a
> Vair convention (Buffalo ?) They were very
> comfortable and seemed like they'd be supportive.
> Summit has them for $260.95. I think they'd look
> very good and period correct in a vair. Anymore
> more bolster would make them look too modern.

Thanks for your reply. I've gone down this path because I've been considering the installation of "Hardtop and Convertible AmSafe #i-3207 3-Pt. Retractable Seat Belts" from Wesco Performance:

http://wescoperformance.stores.yahoo.net/resebe.html

The shoulder belt pivot point would have to mount just below the rear side window in my convertible using the appropriate mounting plate they provide. I had been reading about potential back/shoulder/spine injuries that could occur if the mounting point is too far below shoulder height. However I can't find a definitive definition online of how low is "too low". I contacted Wesco Performance and they were more concerned with seat back height. They indicated that "If it is below the shoulder height than this seatbelt would not be recommended".

The "Procar Pro-90" seat back is 20" high when measured from the top surface of the seat cushion (add another 7" for the headrest). I'm thinking that this might still be too low. I need to take measurements of the existing stock seat in my car. Unfortunately, it will be two weeks before I'm able to do this.

Procar Pro-90 Seat Dimensions:

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: vairmech ()
Date: January 29, 2013 11:53AM

What about Ricaro? I think Dave Clemens is/was a dealer.

Ken Hand
Handy Car Care
248 613 8586

Vairmech@aol.com

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: MonzaDave ()
Date: January 29, 2013 12:15PM

Corbeau is another option -- they have a wide variety of seats and a Corvair specific mounting. Pictured are somewhat modified Corbeau LG-1 seats in my '65.

Dave Keillor
Rochester, MN



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/29/2013 12:23PM by MonzaDave.

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: corventure Dave ()
Date: January 29, 2013 12:21PM

I remember my good friend Herb Berkman had BMW seats in his Stinger. They had the look of the 1965 Corvair but all the advantages of modern seats.

We miss you Herb! I,m sure he is flying and Auto-xing up among the clouds.

Corventure Dave

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Date: January 29, 2013 02:31PM

Herb's Stinger is now in the care of my friend Graham Dell up here in Washington.
Here is a shot of some of the seats along with the custom console and many other touches that Herb added to "Corsa X"




Dan Davis ~ Pierce County, WA ~ CORSA Western Director + Corvairs NW + North Cascades Corvairs + Corvanatics
1966 Corsa Turbo coupe ~ ~ 1966 140 Corsa ~ ~ 1965 Monza 140/4 'Vert Sierra Tan/Fawn ~ 1964 Monza 'Vert (SOLD) ~ 1960 Monza Ermine White/Red PG ++ ~ 1965 Monza 140/4 Evening Orchid w/ ivory/black interior ~ 1962 Monza Wagon 102/4 ~ 1963 Rampside/Scamper ~ 1963 Red/Greenbrier ~ 1969 Ultra Van #468

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: lgoodwin ()
Date: January 29, 2013 03:22PM

Another way to go is a good used pair of seats from a newer car. The seats I pulled from my '91 Mercury Sable look a LOT like the Procar's. Like a lot of other factory equipment, production seats are usually very well made, versus most aftermarket seats. My seats were made in USA during a time when quality was very high. Seats started getting cheaper a few years later. My seats were still in near-new condition (it was my car), with very nice velour cloth. They were too tall for the super low roofline on the Corvair. I cut down the seat rails and welded new mounting tabs on. Here's an old post I found with a photo I took while test fitting them:

Modifying Lear buckets for my 68 500 coupe

I really miss those seats!

If you have a couple and go with used seats, be sure to get them from a coupe. Sedan seats don't dump forward (no need).

1962 Corvair 900 sedan1967 Corvair Monza 140/4-speed1968 Corvair 500 coupe1983 Mexican Mustang 5.0
1962 900 sedan needs a home1967 Monza 140/4-spd1968 500 coupe (now my son's)1983 Mexican Mustang 5.0

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: Impala Guy ()
Date: January 31, 2013 07:43PM

I put a set of those Pro-car seats in my '65 Corsa. Pretty close to bolt in install. I did have to drill an extra hole in the mounting bracket. The stitching in the seat pattern goes well with the stock back seat. They came with headrests (which are removable) and you can adjust/recline the seatback. I have taken one long trip, 5-6 hrs, and they are much more supportive, maybe too firm for some tastes, but YMMV.

'65 Corsa Turbo
'65 Greenbrier Deluxe
'65 Impala SS Ragtop
'95 Impala SS Sedan
'04 Pontiac GTO

Capital City Corvairs
Raleigh, NC

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: SoBo ()
Date: January 31, 2013 07:53PM

Impala Guy Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I put a set of those Pro-car seats in my '65
> Corsa. Pretty close to bolt in install. I did
> have to drill an extra hole in the mounting
> bracket. The stitching in the seat pattern goes
> well with the stock back seat. They came with
> headrests (which are removable) and you can
> adjust/recline the seatback. I have taken one
> long trip, 5-6 hrs, and they are much more
> supportive, maybe too firm for some tastes, but
> YMMV.

Excellent - thanks for your thoughts on these seats. Did you purchase the mounting brackets they offer specifically for the Corvair? I was wondering how high these seats would be positioned in the car. I feel you sit pretty high in the stock seats and I would not mind sitting a little lower. Can you provide a few pics of the seats installed in your car?

Thanks,
Dave

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: vairmech ()
Date: February 01, 2013 04:26AM

If you go up and look the Corbeau seats sit lower.

Ken Hand
Handy Car Care
248 613 8586

Vairmech@aol.com

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: TIBCO ()
Date: February 01, 2013 06:54AM

A couple of thoughts. I'm not sure who Bill was referring to, but Rusty Rose out of Texas had them at the CORSA convention in Cedar Rapids. At the time he was offering them primarily in black and gray, but if you wanted to pony up the extra money, he would have them recovered to match your interior, aqua in my case. Anyway, I haven't been able to make contact with him since the convention. Maybe someone here knows him.

Secondly, Impala guy speaks about the firmness of the seats. In IMHO that is precisely what you want for a long trip. Few believe me but the most comfortable long distance hauler I ever drove was my 79 full size Chevy van. The seat backs were bolt upright and very firm. I routinely made trips from lower NY to FLA in that van and my back never bothered me once. The same trip in our 87 Taurus would leave my back sore.

Finally, I like Luke's suggestion. When it comes time to upgrade my interior, I plan to purchase new seat covers for the back, find some nice seats out of a newer vehicle and have one of our local trim shops recover the front seats to match the rear.

FWIW, a friend of mine just bought a new Toyota Tacoma. On a lark, I grabbed my tape measure and measured his seats. The length is almost identical to our LM seats and it was about 1.5-2" narrower. I have no idea what the frame and mounts look like, but it would fit in our cars rather easily.

Just thinking out loud here. I have got to do something before I drive it to Tacoma next year.

Cliff Tibbitts
Lexington, KY
CORSA, CKCE
66 Monza, 140/4sp

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: MonzaDave ()
Date: February 01, 2013 07:20AM

TIBCO Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Secondly, Impala guy speaks about the firmness of
> the seats. In IMHO that is precisely what you
> want for a long trip.

Absolutely correct. Soft seats are for the showroom. Firm, supportive seats are for road trips. Huge difference. I also have inflatable lumbar supports in the Corbeaus.

Dave Keillor
Rochester, MN

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: RobertC ()
Date: February 01, 2013 08:27AM

I do not know how everybody has mounted their "aftermarket" seats.

Generally, you will be sitting a little higher as you are mounting the new seats to an adapter on the original seat tracks -- unless you construct custom brackets / stands.

Many years ago, Corvairs were not on the adapter list (say Recaro), so I assume you still need to modifiy an adapter that is "close".

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: MonzaDave ()
Date: February 01, 2013 11:11AM

RobertC Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Many years ago, Corvairs were not on the adapter
> list (say Recaro), so I assume you still need to
> modifiy an adapter that is "close".

Corbeau has a Corvair specific mount.

Dave Keillor
Rochester, MN

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: reidmier ()
Date: February 01, 2013 11:34AM

Another option would be seats that don't require a secondary mounting point for shoulder belts. I'm using Chrysler Sebring convertible seats with integrated shoulder belts in my LM. Not period looking, but very comfortable and they sure make it easy to get in/out of the back seat.



Nice instructions on this conversion at: http://www.corvairkid.com/sebring.htm

Reid M.
HACOA
Vegas Vairs
Washington, UT
65 Monza 110 PG

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: Impala Guy ()
Date: February 01, 2013 09:27PM

OP, you have a PM.
I have been very happy with my purchase. The Procar seats have a specific adaptor for the Corvair. The front/back adjustment tracks are in the seat, not the monting bracket. There are three different levels on the mounting brackets that that the seats mount to, at the front and back, so you can pic your height/tilt for the seat bottom. The cusions themselves are much thinner that the "plus size" original seats. They also weigh less.

'65 Corsa Turbo
'65 Greenbrier Deluxe
'65 Impala SS Ragtop
'95 Impala SS Sedan
'04 Pontiac GTO

Capital City Corvairs
Raleigh, NC

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: GenXVairNut ()
Date: February 01, 2013 10:49PM

Those vintage BMW seats look really nice...would like to come across a pair of those. They look like they could be a factory seat.

Joel E.
Cave Creek, AZ
65 Corsa Coupe

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: "UNSAFE" ()
Date: February 02, 2013 02:00PM

No recent photos yet but I am using seats from a Subaru XT . They fit very well and I used 3 of the 4 original Corvair mounting holes . These seats recline and the drivers side has adj lumbar support and a handle to adj the vertical ht.

They were gray velour which did not match my 65 monza black interior so I bought Clark's seat covers and had a shop in Indiana cut them up and recover the Subie seats .

They did a great job and the average Joe would never know that they weren't original equipment.

Photos after the workshop in March .

The first pic below shows the seats with original upholstery but try to picture them in matching 1965 Monza pleated black vinyl.

They second pic is some generic type "Chinese" seats that I bought at FLAPS and they really were junk . Very shaky tracks and extremely hard and uncomfortable and also made entry difficult .I gave them away !

The last pic is my rear seat which has the seatback lowered by 4 inches . Partly to clear the shoulder belts but also because I think it looks cool.

"UNSAFE"
Kevin Willson
65 Monza
Juneau. Alaska

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Re: Seat Upgrade for '65
Posted by: RobertC ()
Date: February 02, 2013 10:23PM

"UNSAFE" Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> which did not match my 65
> monza black interior so I bought Clark's seat
> covers and had a shop in Indiana cut them up and
> recover the Subie seats .
>

FWIW

Clark's will sell the vinyl upholstery material (un-embossed) that they use to make their stock upholstery kits by the yard.

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