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  #1  
Old 04-20-2007, 03:35 PM
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Safe installation of a child car seats in old cars.

I've got a 1982 240D and I want to be able to take my twin 2 year old boys out in it. I told the wife we need an extra set of car seats that I can use in this car and also in my 1989 Bluebird school bus. Just wondering what others are doing with the challenge of installing modern child car seats in vintage cars, and pass on any info I have, which I get mostly from my wife the safety pro! So have you guys got them rear facing or has anyone found a safe way to install anchors for the tethers? Check out this link http://www.car-safety.org/latch.html

Dave

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Old 04-20-2007, 04:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by asnowsquall View Post
I've got a 1982 240D and I want to be able to take my twin 2 year old boys out in it. I told the wife we need an extra set of car seats that I can use in this car and also in my 1989 Bluebird school bus. Just wondering what others are doing with the challenge of installing modern child car seats in vintage cars, and pass on any info I have, which I get mostly from my wife the safety pro! So have you guys got them rear facing or has anyone found a safe way to install anchors for the tethers? Check out this link http://www.car-safety.org/latch.html

Dave
All I've done is use the standard rear lap/shoulder belt through the base and use that "H" shaped metal clip that comes with the seats to keep the belt tight for both front and rear facing seats. I've always assumed that it was as good as any other non-Latch installation. Maybe not?

Besides convenience, the Latch System (my wife's Odyssey has it) makes it easy for people to very snugly fasten the seats. I do like the ability to also attach the top of the carseat in the forward facing applications, though. At 270 lbs. I've go no problem weighing down the carseat or base to firmly install them in a non-Latch car whereas your average mom would have a heckuva time correctly installing one. The Latch takes a lot of that variable out of the equation.
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Old 04-20-2007, 04:09 PM
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You need some vintage car seats to go with the car. Simple as that.
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Old 04-20-2007, 04:12 PM
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Old 04-20-2007, 04:21 PM
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Your 82 may be too old for this but the newer lap/shoulder belts can be pulled all the way out which changes the racheting mechanism so that when retracted and buckled they no longer provide "any" forward movement.

I've found that using that type belt and kneeling on the car seat with my full weight before buckling provides for a very secure connection in cars w/o a tether.
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Old 04-20-2007, 06:45 PM
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Originally Posted by TMAllison View Post
Your 82 may be too old for this but the newer lap/shoulder belts can be pulled all the way out which changes the racheting mechanism so that when retracted and buckled they no longer provide "any" forward movement.

I've found that using that type belt and kneeling on the car seat with my full weight before buckling provides for a very secure connection in cars w/o a tether.
That may be another option is to adapt this style of seatbelt to the car. I know my 82 doesn't have these. When did they (MB) start using this racheting style belts? My 97 Suburban had them.
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Old 04-20-2007, 06:56 PM
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Latch makes getting the seats in and out easier, but if you have a seat like a Britax that is rated all the way to 65# you MUST use the lap/shoulder belt instead of or in combination with the latch connectors once your kid hits around 40#. Of course, in many states you don't have to have a kid in a car seat after 40#. Not all seats or seat belt types use the metal H clip. It is imperative that you heed the directions that come with your seat. When we had the seat rear-facing I looped the hold-down strap connector that came with our Britax around the front seat belt attachment arm. Now that it is forward facing I threaded the attachment connector through the seat belt connector in the wagon's third row seats.

New mercedes seat belts can be purchased for not too much. Obviously the most important thing is to ensure that the seat belt and attachment hardware are all in good shape and functioning correctly.

A good idea is to also have your installation checked by the local highway patrol office, fire station, or whomever does it in your area (and I am not including the 17 year olds at babies 'r us in that category).
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Old 04-20-2007, 09:48 PM
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Tell us the weight of your twin boys.

If your car is an 82, it definitely doesn't have the locking belts. You will HAVE to use the seatbelt clip that comes with a car seat. I would saw it is UNWISE to try to adapt a latch system into your car. Go with what your car already has. Don't make ANY modifications to a car seat or seatbelt. and ALWAYS read all the way through the instruction manual for any car seat you buy.


I will try to check back on this post, but feel free to PM me or email me at kf4rtg@aol.com
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Old 04-20-2007, 11:01 PM
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My daughter is 9y/o and on the short side of average. I still put her in a booster seat as the shoulder belt hits her neck otherwise + she can see out better.

Obviously keep using a seat long after you dont have too regardless of weight vs laws in your state. Is usually safer.

I believe my 90 300D turbo had the same rachet type seat belts.

MB was also required to retrofit and provide tethers for some years; again, yours may be too old for that to apply but call them and see if is applicable or if they have something available to purchase.

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