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Old 04-03-2006, 10:26 PM   #1
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seat belts

What's everyone's take on seatbelts? Using them for every passenger, all of the time? Just looking for some opinions. I'm not trying to tell anyone if they are right or wrong. Let's hear what y'all are doing about this issue.
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Old 04-04-2006, 12:21 AM   #2
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I often don't use them. I have one of them jobs that I'm in and out every 5 minutes and in my state it is not required if the job is somthing the requires you to enter and exit the vehicle often, as long as you don't go over 25mph. And I don't go over 25mph.

In my bus I plan on putting them in just so they are there. I got them with the bus and didn't throw them away so why not use them. They are also nice for if you put something on the seat that you want to tie down you can just use the belt to do that. I've seen in a few over the road trucks that they do put the in the sleeper. I guess it's so they can be belted in while going down the road. Most of them chuck them under the matress.

Sometimes when I take a company bus out to change a flat, I'll take the big shop jact and run it up a chair lift and tie it to a couple seats so it don't roll around in the back.
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Old 04-04-2006, 12:25 AM   #3
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I always wear mine while driving. As for the rest of the seats in my bus, I only put seat belts in one of the bus seats I reused. 99% of the time noone wears a seatbelt except the driver. This is the only reason I installed the other seatbelts.
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Old 04-04-2006, 05:58 AM   #4
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I have seat belts for every seat. I and my family ALWAYS wear ours while the bus is rolling. While I haven't been in any accidents with the bus, I HAVE had to make an emergency stop with evasive actions due to a chucklehead that pulled a particularly stupid maneuver in his effort to get in front of us.

Had all not been belted in, someone WOULD have been relocated (perhaps harmfully) within the bus as evidenced by the loose (albeit light) cargo that rapidly relocated itself to the front of the bus, bouncing off the seats on it's way forward.

Please note that I normally DO strap down my cargo. The shifiting cargo in this case was a weeks worth of plastic-bagged groceries being transported to the house for my family, and I have since made provisions for containing them while on the short haul from store to house.

Not saying right or wrong, YMMV, but I am a FIRM believer in seat belt use!
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Old 04-04-2006, 12:53 PM   #5
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I am a big fan of seatbelts. I wear mine 99.999% of the time when I'm driving my truck after my first accident when I was in highschool.

I was just tooling along on my way to morning football weightlifting with a buddy when a guy just up and pulled out in front of us with his Ranger (ironically he was a DNR Game Warden....a peace officer). There was nothing we could do to stop in the snow (I was in 4wd going at a very safe pace) and swerving really isn't an option in an Isuzu Trooper. End result was a motor in the passenger compartment of the vehicle. I ended up with a couple broken ribs from the seatbelt, but considering the alternative, that seemed fine to me.

That said...the only seat in my bus that will have a seatbelt is the driver seat. It just isn't feasible anywhere else and I don't know that it will be necessary. If I end up putting a copilot seat in in a forward facing manner near the driver, it will also have a seatbelt. I just can't see rigging up the couch, dinette, etc with them. I think it will prove to be quite unnecessary.
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Old 04-04-2006, 02:11 PM   #6
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re seat belts

Here's my 2 cents. I use them, and plan to have them in the bus in area's that will hold people while moving. In Alberta and Nova Scotia (possibly all of canada) all passengers must be wearing seat belts. The seat belts in comercial RV's are bolted directly to the chasis. I am trying to make my bus safer than comercial rv's so that's my plan. Seat belts save lives, period. Of course there are minor exceptions and they can be an inconvience, however for me and my family I don't like the odds.

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Old 04-04-2006, 04:05 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_experience03
If I end up putting a copilot seat in in a forward facing manner near the driver, it will also have a seatbelt. I just can't see rigging up the couch, dinette, etc with them. I think it will prove to be quite unnecessary.
The seat directly behind the drivers seat in my bus is the one that I put the seatbelts in. I agree that it seems unnecessary to have seat belts in the other seats. I don’t see how a seatbelt in a sideways facing couch or a lazyboy would do much good anyway, at least not in a front-end crash.

Not to mention all you’re conversion "stuff" braking loose & flying around. Sometimes when I'm driving my bus I think about that... Ok if I get into an accident I'll have my seatbelt on….. wait, what about the 100lb+ cabinetI built that sits directly behind me screwed to the ceiling? Is that going to break loose & hit me? What would happen if it did? Then I start driving extra cautious for a few miles until I forget about it.

Point is in an accident bad things are going to happen, especially in a homemade motorhome. It’s best to be extra cautious & try your best to avoid an accident at all times. Sometimes that’s impossible, but that’s the risk you take I guess.
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Old 04-04-2006, 06:19 PM   #8
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You all have very valid points, I too agree they are a good idea. By the way, Does anyone have any extra belts? My bus only had one (driver's) and it's NASTY. I could use about 8 complete belts.
Thanks everyone!
Brad

P.S. I sure would hate to get hit in the back of the head with a flying dog or cat in the event of an accident.

Brad
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Old 04-04-2006, 06:41 PM   #9
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you can get belts cheap at autozone

I bought 5 adjustable lap belts from my local Autozone for $15 a piece, which is pretty reasonable compared to $30 at NAPA or $21 from JC Whitney, and I didn't have to pay delivery costs. they are the kind that adjust up to 91" long so you can use them about anywhere. I bolted them to the seat rail along the wall for my sideways bench seats/bunks.
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Old 04-04-2006, 09:07 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bdavis441
By the way, Does anyone have any extra belts? My bus only had one (driver's) and it's NASTY. I could use about 8 complete belts. . .Brad
My local scrap yards only charged me 2.50 a set for ones I pulled out of their junked vehicles. Got to choose the ones I wanted, too!
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Old 04-04-2006, 09:32 PM   #11
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My local scrap yards only charged me 2.50 a set for ones I pulled out of their junked vehicles. Got to choose the ones I wanted, too!
Yeah I think I paid something like $5.00 per belt from my junk yard. And I got to choose which car I got them from too.
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Old 04-04-2006, 11:10 PM   #12
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Hmmm.....I have a lot of stuff that might go flying in the event of just a hard braking, let alone an accident.....I think making a 12 point rollcage around my seat will be easier than securing all that stuff. People who ride in the back are welcome to construct their own protection

Ok now...honest question. My bus, like all others I've ever seen, had those big cushions between the frontmost seats and the driverseat and entry way. I know they were strong as heck and a royal pain to remove. Now I kind of regret taking the one out from behind the driver seat atleast. Anyone else have an interesting solution to this problem? The driver seat seems plenty tough to keep me in place, but if that couch were to break free with 3 of my friends on it.....well.....I know I'd be eating glass.
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Old 04-05-2006, 08:33 AM   #13
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I always wear the seatbelt in my driver's seat when I drive.

Of course...my driver's seat still isn't quite bolted down properly.....
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Old 04-06-2006, 02:45 AM   #14
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The seat belt law has to be read carefully, around here all the seatbelts that were installed at the factory must be worn. Factory built motorhomes are equipped with them as per the law . The law here and probably other places too, doesn't require you to install seatbelts that were never there in the first place. My 49 chev car never had them and I am not required to add them. An amateur installing a seatbelt may create unusual or detrimental effects. Unless you are an engineer, I don't think you should assume the liability of an ill constructed safety device. Placement of the belt across the hips and all other factors have to be considered. Anyone here want to guarantee their work that way ? I am very sure I can build a belt mount that will not pull through the floor, but anchoring a person into unknown construction can be a hazard in itself. What if the person stays put and the microwave does not ? I guess my point is that theres more than meets the eye in seatbelt placement and use in a home modified bus.
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Old 04-16-2006, 01:45 PM   #15
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seating questions

I have bought a leather RV sofa bed that will be sideways behind the driver. How do you secure it to the floor so it doesn't become a missle in a wreck and has anybody adapted seat belts to a sofa like that? Also is it enough to secure seat belts with a bolt and big washer through the 1/2 inch plywood and the sheet metal floor? Or should they be bolted through the "ribs" under the bus like the original seats? Also any experience mounting an automobile car seat that can swivel, but also accomodate a seat belt.

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Old 04-16-2006, 02:59 PM   #16
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yeah I did the same thing

I essentially did what you want to do. I used the seat rail along the side of the bus to fasten the bench seat seat belts to and ran the belts between the back rest and the bench. For the swiveling bucket seats I secured the seat belts to the angle iron frame I built to support the car seats to the swiveling seat posts. I got the seat's out of some old mercedes benzs at the salvage yard for $25 each and bolted a piece of 3/4 inch plywood to the bottom of the bucket seat. I reinforced the plywood with angle iron from bed frames around the outside of the plywood and lengthwise on either side of the swivel bracket bolted to the bottom. I bought the swiveling removeable seat posts from Cabela's web site in their boat seat supply section. they had some non removeable steel ones for $15 but I bought the expensive aluminum removeable ones for $60. If you are going to secure belts to the floor you should use the big shoulder washers that came out when you removed the original seats. I also ran some bed frame angle iron reinforcements from the top of the seat posts just below the swivel to brackets in the floor, since the seat belt is attached to the swivelling seat and not the floor. take a look at my gallery photos to get a bit better idea http://www.skoolie.net/gallery2/Lola if you want better shots of the belt installation just ask and I'll go take some.
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Old 04-19-2006, 01:07 AM   #17
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Re: seating questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by shaggy
I have bought a leather RV sofa bed that will be sideways behind the driver. How do you secure it to the floor so it doesn't become a missle in a wreck and has anybody adapted seat belts to a sofa like that? Also is it enough to secure seat belts with a bolt and big washer through the 1/2 inch plywood and the sheet metal floor? Or should they be bolted through the "ribs" under the bus like the original seats? Also any experience mounting an automobile car seat that can swivel, but also accomodate a seat belt.

shag
On my bus the inboard end of each seat was bolted through the floor and very few of them actually hit ribs. The bolts were like 1/4" not 1/2". I can't imagine you'd have any problems with the idea you have.

There are commercial RV seats (can be found on several web sites) that swivel and also have seat belts. I've also seen seat bases that swivel with seat belt mounts and then you can choose your own seat.
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Old 04-19-2006, 04:43 PM   #18
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I used seats from a salvaged rv, then found 2 bases from a focatory converted van a salvage yard for $15 each. They came with the belts attached to the swivel stand. Then boled that through the floor. So far so good.

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Old 04-21-2006, 04:30 PM   #19
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I found a base, 13 inch pedestal and seat mounting base on Cabelas for 160 bucks for two sets. It swivels and looks pretty sturdy. I thought I'd mount a piece of plywood to the seat base and get a couple of reclining salvaged car seats and bolt them to the plywood. I also found two electric leather front seats from a land rover for 150 bucks for the front and navigator seats. Not sure how to test to see if the electric adjustments work, however.

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