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Thread: Seat Belts

  1. #1
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    Seat Belts

    Does anyone have any pictures of an original 1st Gen Sportvan rear bench seat with seat belts? I just installed the bench seat I kept from my 108 into the back and need to install at least basic lap belts before anyone rides there. I see these holes which appear to be for securing belts, the one on the rear driver side wheel well in particular. I included a photo of the underside of the wheel well. I didn't have any spare bolts laying around that fit (after blowing out copious amounts of dirt with a can of air). There are four total, one on the DS wheel well, three on the floor over the gas tank, so can't see what is underneath them.

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    Also, the 1st Gen does not have factory threaded roof rail holes for a three point system like a 2nd Gen. How have people hooked up three point systems, especially without wrecking the Sport van window moldings?

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    VCVC Member kookykrispy's Avatar
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    I do believe those are factory seat belt points. Seat belts were required by the govt. in all vehicles starting in 1966, so that is usually the first year you see signs of them in our old vans.



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    Seat Belts

    What year van?

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    Gary
    1965 Display

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    I'm wondering if those rubber pieces are just plugs, I plan to dig one out and see. I'm thinking maybe vehicles were built to have seatbelts as options for a few years before they became mandatory? This van was sold new in late 1965, and is a 1966 model. It is titled as a 1965, maybe that was a later error after it sat at some point, who knows. I don't know any history on it other than I bought it in Santa Clarita in 2012, it was purchased new in a small CA town east of there.

    Also - if anyone has pics or advice on how to attach the upper portion of three points belts on a first gen I'd love to see them.

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    Seat Belts

    Well in 1965 belts were making an appearance; trucks had an option see below.:
    For the van, I would bet you would find them listed in the 1966 Custom Feature Accessories book.


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    Wikipedia stated "Title 49 of the United States Code, Chapter 301, Motor Vehicle Safety Standard, which took effect on January 1, 1968, that required all vehicles (except buses) to be fitted with seat belts in all designated seating positions"
    Gary
    1965 Display

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    Quote Originally Posted by VanSandy View Post
    Also - if anyone has pics or advice on how to attach the upper portion of three points belts on a first gen I'd love to see them.
    Van Sandy
    IMHO, you would need to get creative to install an upper mount for a 3 point harness. That is, if you don't want to cut into that hard to find fiberglass. I do not advise cutting the fiberglass. While I have not measured it, you may be able to make an upside down U shaped mount that slips behind the fiberglass and then provides the third point on the harness. The fiberglass panels could be shimmed slightly at the top to accommodate the width of the mount. That may allow for little or no trimming of the fiberglass. The mounting point would likely include a plate behind the fiberglass and interior roof rail to spread out the load. If you are going to regularly carry passengers, it is a worthwhile investment of time and money.
    108VanGuy...
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    Quote Originally Posted by 108VanGuy View Post
    Van Sandy
    IMHO, you would need to get creative to install an upper mount for a 3 point harness. That is, if you don't want to cut into that hard to find fiberglass..
    Good point on the fiberglass as it is old and brittle. Your U shape bracket is giving me some ideas. I was definitely thinking of adding a plate to shore up the sheet metal, then weld on a nut to run a bolt into...

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    OK, so I dug out one of the plastic pieces and I was correct, they are plugs. Once I had all the dust out they take 7/16 fine thread bolts, just like some of the other factory holes in the floor that have been in use for various things - PO had rigged up strap rackets for Vespas.

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