I got tired of not having enough room in my car. I was able to get Pro-Am in Houston to weld up a bracket to fit a Recaro SE seat into my car. Net result: I can now sit in the car with an inch of headroom to spare. Total cost: $42,000 less than a new A6! Woo hoo! We headed for Houston and got there around noon or so, and spent the first hour or so trying out various seats. Any of the pure racing shells were too narrow. The newer stylish Recaros, like the Trend and such were too thick in the bottom cushion to really net me any gain. So the classic SE was chosen. We pulled one from storage that was dark black nubby fabric with the Recaro logo stitched in silver in the seating area below the headrest.
The SE is still a very firm seat, with a bit more bolstering than my factory manual seats have perhaps. You can easily compare/contrast it to the passenger seat, which is still the factory jobber, and it will be for a while till I come up with the $600 for the other one.
It looks like a the classic "Recaro Sport Seat" familiar to BMW and Audi owners for years.
We modified a bracket originally intended for a Audi 5k. The bracket utilizes the factory front seat mounting/adjusting pin in a single hole, and there are two tabs which bolt to plates inserted in the factory rails in the floorpan. The bracket was 1/2" too wide at the rear, so it was cut and rewelded to the proper length. The front tab was also lengthened and reshaped so the bracket could sit further back and lower. During this process, we had time so we schlepped on down to Joes Crab Shack (1/2 block away on the other side of Richmond) and had one of their pot specials (no drugs involved) of mussels, crabs, shrimp, corn and potatoes. Scrumptious. Once the bracket was done and installed, we removed the seat belt buckle from the factory seat, along with its wiring for its warning light. It clipped into the factory slider rail much like the rear tab of the seat bracket did. When this was done, a pair of slider brackets were attached to the bottom of the Recaro seat, and then the whole assembly was placed over the mount bracket and secured with 4 bolts. There are 3 holes on each slider bracket tab to adjust for height and rake relative to the floor mounted bracket. After trying the lowest setting first, we ended up utilizing the lowest of the three holes in the rear and the second lowest in the front, thus giving the seat a bit of rake. Like the moron that I am, I did not take my camera to record any photos of the process. Ah well.
The results speak for themselves. The headrest (solid) is high enough that I can actually use it, and the seat sits me in the car low enough that I can pass my hand comfortably between my head and the headliner. Out the door, this was an $800 job. $500 for the seat, 2 hours labor, and the rest brackets, the lumbar support, and such.
The InstallerIf you are in need of such fabrication services or racing parts (including Royal Purple motor oil) feel free to contact: John Rawson Pro Am Auto Accessories 1-800-847-5712 http://www.proamtdw.com They are down on Richmond a bit south of FountainView in Houston.
Next I needed to use some resistors to stop the pesky airbag light from showing its shining countenance on my dashboard. I used a multimeter and a sharp craft stick to determine the resistance of the airbag to be around 3 ohms. I don't have any 3 ohm resistors, but a pair of 10s twisted together makes a 5-ohm resistor, and that was enough to turn off the warning. So the seat works, and the airbag light doesn't. I also used VW Tool to clear the fault codes from the ECU.