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MG Midget and Sprite Technical - Replacing Seat Mounts

I'm in the process of doing the underside of my 1500 midget. One of the areas needing attention is where some oaf has ripped the old seats out - literally. All that remains are the 2 rear seat mounting holes, the front mounting points on both seats have been torn clear out of the floor pan leaving ~1" holes.

Seeing as the seats I have are old and stinky, I fancied a change to more modern seats and runners. I've got some in mind but whats the opinion on the best way to attach the modern style runners to the car?

Should I weld in repair patches and weld nuts on like the original appears to have been or strengthen it up with some sort of bracing while I've got the welder out as it frankly looks rather flimsy and all safety bets are off if the seat comes out the car?

I was thinking of using rivet nuts instead of weld nuts as I don't like the idea of having to be both on top and underneath the car at the same time and the rivet nuts are nice and simple to accurately place. Does anyone have any thoughts on this?
W Turner

Sorry can#t help on the modern seat fittings as I've used the originals but like you am a fan of rivet nuts and use them wherever possible - they're such a good solution. They'd need to be pretty robust ones to take the stresses of seat fittings mind you.
BTW whereabouts on Merseyside are you? I'm in Formby.

Jeremy 3

weld repair patches, drill holes in them, then weld the bolts to the seats and grind a lead in on them, seats then drop straight in with no faffing.

That's what I've done on my fiat seats. Then (more recently) I've lengthened the front ones to tilt the seat base up at the front, it's made is hugely more comfortable to sit in.
Rob Armstrong

Thats not a bad way of doing it. I can weld the patches in, finish off the rest of the underside then drill the holes when the car is back upright.

I've got access to the fabrication area at my work, they've just bought a stud welder that does up to M10, I could use it to fit the seat runners. A shame we don't use any rivet nuts larger than M5 though. There is a large selection of fancy rivet nuts, I've seen ones that are monsterously strong in a catalogue somewhere, and I've seen the larger ones used in car too - for seat belt mounts so they must be strong, probably far stronger than a sheet of 1.0 or 1.2mm steel.

I haven't actually got the modern seats yet, I didn't want to get any until I knew how I was going to fit them, the house is chock full of midget parts already so I didn't want to disrupt the domestic harmony any more.

Jeremy, I'm on the south side of St Helens but work over at the Knowsley industrial estate so not far at all. If you need a spare pair of hands (or an engine crane) for a job let me know.
W Turner

I may just take you up on your offer as the engine may need to be removed again - clutch thrust release bearing. The offer works both ways so if you need an additional pair of hands just let me know.
Jeremy 3

When I put mine together recently, I screwed bolts up from under the car so they protrude through the carpet. One pair can be screwed tight into the captive nut. For the other pair where there isn't a welded nut I fixed a nut above the floor and the seat rests on that. That makes it really easy to locate the seat and put nuts on top. I have MGF seats in mine which are a tight fit but very comfy. As for modifying the seat bases, I followed what someone on this BBS had done (can't remember who) and cut off the rear legs and welded flat straps across the seat frames that could be drilled to line up with the original bolt positions.

Mike Howlett

Jeremy, let me know as the engine crane is taking up lots of work space at the minute and I'm still a few months off refitting an engine. You can get hold of me on [my full name]

I'm going to follow Robs method of putting studs on the seats, it seems the least hassle to fit and means any welding can be done outside the car.

Rob did you strengthen up the floor around the holes or just leave them as is?
W Turner

left them as they were. Big (2 inch) thick washers on the top of the floor though, and the same on the outer 2 underneath (there's a sort of strengthening thingy under the transmission tunnel side)

Rob Armstrong

Thanks, will do. If you need any help in the meantime - my email is jeremytickle at ymail dot com.
Good luck with the seats.
Jeremy 3

This thread was discussed between 10/07/2012 and 13/07/2012

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