2011-10-18

When I can't contain myself, there's a seat for that

October has been a sucky month for some of my racing friends. Crashes, injuries, or plain old cancer, it appears like universe is feasting on pain.

Determined not to add to the feast, I am now researching better seats for my race car.

You see, the secret to limiting damage from any impact is to dissipate the impulse over as large an area of your body as possible, i.e. not just your hip and shoulder, or hip and ribs, but every square inch of your body that is available on that side. That is where the containment seat comes in. Here's what I am looking at.

This here is a custom-built seat, manufactured by Joie of Seating in sunny North Carolina, which should fit into my little car just fine.

The idea is to tow the car to the local dealer so both I and Wasabi can be measured and we can make sure there is enough room for the new seat. While my roll cage in not ideal, because it does not go into the driver side door, and thus constrains the space available for the seat, it helps that I can fit in a smaller size seat, so there is hope that I can fit this bad boy in.

This here is a RaceTech seat, built in New Zealand, and comes highly recommended by Kiwi, who's been in more crashes than I probably have driven total races on track. It costs slightly less, but is also not custom-made. However, the local dealer will be able to fit me, so that I get the seat to best support and protect me. It is made of carbon fiber, which is kinda cool, and also helps with weight. On the other hand, I will be bolting in weights in the car once the passenger seat is out, if I want to be sure not to get under weight, so that's not really a concern.

What is unclear is whether it'll fit inside my car. So that means that Wasabi will have to come with me to the other dealer too, most likely.

There are of course more seats out there, and I have just begun my research. Do any of my readers have good or bad experiences to share, or recommendations for me to check out?