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Subjective seat fit question

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smellsofbikes John B
Arvada, COLORADO, USA   USA
1975 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Queen Anne's Revenge"
My seats are the originals from 1975, and of course are looking pretty terrible. They're also quite uncomfortable. I've looked at a lot of options, and am pretty much split between going through Park Lane Classics and rebuilding the current ones, or putting in Miata seats.
Here's the subjective part: I keep reading people saying that the originals, when refurbished, are quite comfortable. I'm wondering what they compare to.
My wife (the primary driver) loves the fit of seats in Japanese automobiles: she has a Subaru STI, has owned Toyotas and Nissans. She intensely dislikes the fit of seats in American cars, like a 1999 Ford Focus, a 1990 Camaro, and a couple of others.
So if people had to make a comparison: what does a refurbished Spitfire seat feel like, compared to other cars? I'd really hate to spend a chunk of money to provide a newer but still uncomfortable set of seats, when she already likes seats similar to a Miata's.

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claytoncnc Avatar
claytoncnc Gold Member Marcus Clayton
Melbourne, Ivanhoe, Australia   AUS
Less supportive than an MX5, more armchair style in my early car, they do locate you in place but not as positively as Japanese units.
I find them quite good, even after a 3 hour run.
I had some aftermarkets, and they were nasty.

Doug in Vegas Avatar
Doug in Vegas Douglas D
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA   USA
They are an improvement over stock with the modern foams.

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Tonyfixit Avatar
Tonyfixit Tony M
Duncan, British Columbia, Canada   CAN
Ford seats give me backache, VW seats are a bit too hard on my bum, stock Spitfire seats are good for two or three hours, Toyota Honda suit me best.

Jumpy Avatar
Jumpy Arthur Jump
Marlborough, Wiltshire, UK   GBR
1972 Triumph Spitfire MkIV "The Mutt"
classic mini seats work great unless youre tall or want rails but mine are new s will probably wear down abit https://www.plminishop.com/2nd_Hand_Parts/2321/Mini_Classic_Seats_And_Subframes_Set_(2).html

SpitMan Avatar
SpitMan Doug Walls
Brandywine, Maryland, USA   USA
1970 Triumph Spitfire MkIII "70 Spit"
1998 Chevrolet Corvette "Silver Fox"
2007 Chevrolet Silverado
2013 Chevrolet Malibu "Pearl Baby"
Partial of a previous post on another Thread:

I re-upholstered and installed the early Miata seats. These, although a tight fit from side to side, still allow reclining and forward and aft adjustment and are much more comfortable than the original seats. Another issue is some high back seats will not allow the conv. top to go up and down. These seats do clear the top. Attached some file pictures found on the Internet and my seats.

Some of these seats have speakers built-in to the headrest others without can be adapted. I adapted mine and upholstered them in black leatherette.

I use to roll a towel up and put it behind my lower back on the old Spitfire seats if I were traveling for some distance, otherwise, my back would give me fits. I am not sure but I guess you could add an adjustable lumbar pad under the upholstery of the old Spitfire seats if you are re-upholstering them. You would not glue that portion of the seatback down. I started to do this with the Miata seats I have but found them comfortable without it.


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carChips Avatar
carChips Victor Harnish
Kelowna, BC, Canada   CAN
1933 MG Magnette
1973 Triumph Spitfire 1500 "Chip"
1989 GMC Sierra 1500 "Bush Truck"
What is this you talk about "COMFORT"? If you want the true driving experience, you need to feel every bump.

All joking aside, rebuilt spitty seats are pretty good.



'S all for now
Vic

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Manana Avatar
Manana Steve Wten
Thornhill, Ontario, Canada   CAN
I was pretty surprised at how much better the factory seats were after I did the Parklane Classics rebuild.

Everything is relative of course, they are period seats for a car that was tiny and never meant to be driven very far. They fit the seats to those exact qualifiers, and in my opinion are fine for that.
(It's always a laugh watching my 6'3" buddy as a passenger in my car during AutoCross with nothing to hang on to. smiling smiley )

Given the size restrictions (my personal view is that the Miata and similar seats look out of place in our cars - likely just because I'm used to looking at really small seats) I'm not sure you'll find anything better unless you custom build. I would have loved to fit my Prelude seats into the Spit, but although they are considerably nicer than the Miata seats, still too big.

FWIW



Steve
http://stevew10.wix.com/spit16



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2017-11-29 07:44 AM by Manana.

chipkey101 Avatar
chipkey101 Billy Knight
Parrish, florida, USA   USA
Hello, I wrestled with this same question. I ended up with having a local upholster redo my seats from scratch. They turned out good but there is something to be said for cloth interior in hot weather.

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SpitMan Avatar
SpitMan Doug Walls
Brandywine, Maryland, USA   USA
1970 Triumph Spitfire MkIII "70 Spit"
1998 Chevrolet Corvette "Silver Fox"
2007 Chevrolet Silverado
2013 Chevrolet Malibu "Pearl Baby"
Very nice seats. During hot weather carry a towel with you and throw across the seat. Simple but effective!

In reply to # 1500474 by chipkey101 Hello, I wrestled with this same question. I ended up with having a local upholster redo my seats from scratch. They turned out good but there is something to be said for cloth interior in hot weather.

Fictioneer Avatar
Fictioneer Doug Hirt
Colorado Springs, CO, USA   USA
I have Miata seats in my '72 and will be either taking them out or greatly reworking them. They are quite comfortable, but the headrests are massively bulky and stick up so far above the car that every time I look at them I think the car is fantasying about the cute little Smartcar down the street. My solution will be to either reupholster the '79 Spitfire seats I have on hand -- sans the headrests -- or do surgery on the Miata seats to remove the embarrassing headrests, and then reupholster. This is probably the route I'll end up going since the bum portion of the seat is so comfortable, and the foam feels much more firm, as Doug mentioned above. I know some here will complain about the safety factor of not having headrests. Well, if safety was really a concern for us we'd all be driving those H3 Hummer wantabes.



"Mr. Filby, do you think he'll ever return?"
"One cannot choose but wonder. You see . . . he has all the time in the world!"

Doug in Vegas Avatar
Doug in Vegas Douglas D
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA   USA
At 6' I had to remove most of the foam from the driver's side to allow me to look through the windshield rather than over it. I left the passenger side alone. My wife loves the Miata seats over the old ones but I know I could easily fix the originals.

Here's the thing, the stock Spitfire seats have the rails slightly off center and there is a cantilevered pivot point inbound to clear the rear section where the frame curves and reduces the size of the floor pan. I'm going to eventually pull the seats and redesign the metal pan of the seat so it does the same.

Manana Avatar
Manana Steve Wten
Thornhill, Ontario, Canada   CAN
Doug, that's a big part of the reason I didn't go that way (had a set of seats in my motor/tranny swap donor car but elected to sell them).

The nice thing about the Miata seats and the reason the headrests are so big is the speakers; nice feature, but as you say, comes at the price of aesthetics.

I'll be interested to see what you come up with. Always an interesting discussion.



Steve
http://stevew10.wix.com/spit16

SpitMan Avatar
SpitMan Doug Walls
Brandywine, Maryland, USA   USA
1970 Triumph Spitfire MkIII "70 Spit"
1998 Chevrolet Corvette "Silver Fox"
2007 Chevrolet Silverado
2013 Chevrolet Malibu "Pearl Baby"
Billy,

Did your Upholsterer make the covers from scratch or use a kit? I was just thinking (which is dangerous) that in the future if I decide to redo my old highback Spitfire seats that maybe I could get the upholsterer to insert a little more foam in the lumbar area, either that or just add an air adjustable/lumbar bladder. http://www.sportsimportsltd.com/inseluinairc.html

Just thinking out loud!!! spinning smiley sticking its tongue out (all I need is another project!)

In reply to # 1500474 by chipkey101 Hello, I wrestled with this same question. I ended up with having a local upholster redo my seats from scratch. They turned out good but there is something to be said for cloth interior in hot weather.

Dale M. Avatar
Tell City, Indiana, USA   USA
Thanks Doug for that link. That looks like a great (inexpensive) way to solve, what I see as a problem with the original seats.
Now I know where to go when I start redoing my seats. My wife and I have decided that we would just redo the originals, but I was concerned about the lack of lumbar support. I even have an aftermarket removable one for my truck. My wife doesn’t like to use it.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2017-11-29 02:36 PM by Dale M..

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