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Car seat for 0-4 in "classic" car

(20 Posts)
typonaut Sun 18-Oct-09 20:44:18

I would like to find a car seat (preferably rear facing) to suit my 18 month, 10.5kg son, that I can fit into my "classic" car.

The problem here is that said car has no rear seat belts (but it does have anchor points for lap belts) and only has lap belts in the front. We have a Jané Matrix Cup - but that definitely won't work as it requires a three-point seat belt.

If this requires a permanently fixed seat, then that wouldn't be too much of a problem.

Thanks in advance.

NorktasticNinja Sun 18-Oct-09 20:48:39

Blimey, that's a tough call! Is it possible to have adaptions made so there is a 3 point seat belt?

How about contacting rearfacing.co.uk to see if they know of anything?

typonaut Sun 18-Oct-09 20:56:52

It is "possible" to fit a three point belt, but it's not the easiest thing in the world to do because this model doesn't have the high level anchor points (so they would have to be fabricated/welded-in).

A rear facing seat is a preference, it's not a necessity.

Long, long ago the usual practice with car seats was that you had to drill holes and bolt them in place - which meant that they obviously weren't portable between cars. I don't mind bolting it in place, but I don't want to drill any holes.

thisisyesterday Sun 18-Oct-09 21:05:18

there are certainly seats that can be fitted with just a lapbelt, a few of the britax ones are fine

we've just got a britax 2 way elite, which looks asthough you ought to be able to fit it with a lapbelt (it's a rear-facing one), but hte instructions are out inthe car so i can't check rightnow for you.

whereabouts in the country are you?
we wentto the in car safety centre in milton keynes andthey were really,really helpful

thisisyesterday Sun 18-Oct-09 21:15:11

yes, the 2 way elite can be used with a lap belt

(is your car a beetle??? i had the same trouble with mine!)

nicm Sun 18-Oct-09 21:31:54

i can second the twe. we have it and love it, is a very flexible seat. can be fitted just using a lap belt.

paisleyleaf Sun 18-Oct-09 21:36:38

We used a britax eclipse with the lap belts in our camper

NorktasticNinja Sun 18-Oct-09 22:12:38

I second the car safety centre in milton keynes , I've spoaken to them on the phone (am not in the UK) and they were fab.

We have a BeSafe izi Combi rear facing seat for DD, it's grat but I don't know if it'd work for you.

typonaut Sun 18-Oct-09 22:17:32

I'm in SW London, so Milton Keynes is a bit out of the way for me, but it looks like Britax have suitable seats, thanks for the tips.

thisisyesterday, no, not a Beetle, a Mustang.

thisisyesterday Mon 19-Oct-09 10:59:35

we have a besafe izi combi too! don't think that would work as it needs the 3 point seatbelt, the diagonal bit needs to go on the back brace piece.

in car safetyhave a couple of other britax ones though that will fit just with a lap belt. the nordic secura and the secura hi-way

it's def worth having it fitted though to make sure it's a good fit, after all no point paying out for rear-facing if it doesn't fit properly.
we are in west sussex and made the trip up to MK, it wasn't that bad tbh.

but there is also a place in essex that people rave about whih might be easier for you? don't knw where it is off the top of my head though

typonaut Mon 19-Oct-09 13:52:37

The "in car safety centre" in MK says the Britax two way elite, I can't see that or the nordic secura/nordic secura highway on the Britax web site though!?

thisisyesterday Mon 19-Oct-09 14:32:41

no, you won't. britax don't sell them for the uk market, they only sell them in the rest of europe as apparently there is "no demand" hmm

if you phone britax they cite the in car safety centre as their "uk dealer" though

typonaut Mon 19-Oct-09 16:29:54

ok, but where do you find the techspecs, manuals, etc?

thisisyesterday Mon 19-Oct-09 20:29:05

it'll come with a manual. this is why it's best to get it fitted somewhere to ensure it;'s ok.

if there's anything specific you want to know about the 2-way elite i have my booklet here and can see if it says!

typonaut Sun 25-Oct-09 18:29:02

Ok, went to MK yesterday, here's the outcome: two way elite is a non-starter (essentially requires "anchoring" by resting on the back of front seat or on dashboard - which IMO is just not safe).

The Secura Hi-way requires that the seat belt anchoring the seat passes immediately below the thin cover on which the child sits. In this case the seat belt buckle is essentially exposed to the child to undo and/or they have the misfortune to be sitting on top of the buckle (not comfortable).

For some reason we didn't try the Nordic Secura or the Mult-tech - perhaps these were discounted for other reasons by the staff!?

The only seat that we could get a decent fitting on was the Eclipse, which is forward facing, and which we're currently considering...

nicm Sun 25-Oct-09 20:49:54

typonaut why do you think the twe won't be safe if it is resting against the back of the seat/dashboard? it uses this as it doesn't have a support leg, so is more flexible in more cars(eg. those with underfloor storage)...and is safer than ff!

typonaut Sun 25-Oct-09 22:23:19

I think the 2 way elite isn't safe in the back anchored against the front seat because:

Seats "deform" in accidents.

I'm pretty sure that seats aren't designed to take weight/stress from objects behind them

and most of all, because any movement in the front seat (ie by the seat user) makes the child's seat unstable.

I think it's not safe in the front because:

It's wedged up against the dashboard which is most likely made of plastic and is also likely to deform in an accident (most likely is going to intrude into the cabin)

Dashboards aren't designed for those stresses

and again, if the seat gets moved at all the child seat is unstable.

It may well be that this seat has passed various tests, but to me it looks inherently unstable, and those test rely on 100% correct installation/no deviation. If there is a slight change in the geometry it becomes unstable.

I personally wouldn't put a child in one. I know the seats with stabiliser legs are more money, but they seem worth an extra £50 or so to me, because their stability is based upon things that don't move - ie seat belt anchorages, seat fixing points and floors, that are all designed to take the stress and strain of accidents.

nicm Sun 25-Oct-09 22:37:19

mmm i can see what you're saying. am going to get another seat at the in car safety centre tomorrow so will ask about this. i have the twe and was happy enough as even the maxi cosi mobi(the seat i originally wanted) uses the dashboard instead of the support leg when in the front. will report back what he tells me!

typonaut Tue 27-Oct-09 02:21:35

When I was looking at the seat at the in car safety centre they basically agreed with my opinion on the TWE. You only have to look at the way the thing is "balanced" to see that any movement in the geometry makes it unstable.

My preference for our "other" car was the BeSafe iZi Combi x2 - but I'm sure I read that that too required wedging against the dashboard if in the front. Going to check again - because I think that's essentially the best seat in the market (or the Isofix version). The reason I say that is because it has a polystyrene base with a thin foam liner - which essentially the same setup as motorcycle crash helmets. The Britax seats seem to have thin foam covers over moulded plastic.

Adventuredad Wed 04-Nov-09 16:54:18

Interesting discussion. Let me please respond to some of these statements since many of them are very incorrect:-)

TWE is not a "unbalanced" seat. It's one of the strongest and most versatile seats on the market today. It's incredibly strong. We install this seat and others leaning, some call it bracing, against seat in front since it's the safest way to install a rear facing Swedish car seat. The seat has passed testing freestanding, this seat is rock solid and extremely safe

***"Seats "deform" in accidents.

I'm pretty sure that seats aren't designed to take weight/stress from objects behind them
and most of all, because any movement in the front seat (ie by the seat user) makes the child's seat unstable."**

This is not correct. TWE, and other seats, lean against front seat for extra stability. In a collision, usually front collision since this is 75% of all accidents, TWE does not put lots of strain on seat if front. It will not cause the seat to deform since seat belt will easily absorb the force. Extensive testing has been done on this in the 90's from major car seat manufacturers and conclusion is it's extremely safe. I can also mention that Sweden has been rear facing seats since 1965, I personally sat rear facing in 1967, and we show no problems with collapsing front seats.

*"hink it's not safe in the front because:

It's wedged up against the dashboard which is most likely made of plastic and is also likely to deform in an accident (most likely is going to intrude into the cabin)
Dashboards aren't designed for those stresses
and again, if the seat gets moved at all the child seat is unstable.
It may well be that this seat has passed various tests, but to me it looks inherently unstable, and those test rely on 100% correct installation/no deviation. If there is a slight change in the geometry it becomes unstable."*

Extremely inaccurate! The dashboard is the strongest point in the car. That's not a misprint. It's designed to absorb unbelievable amounts of force. A child is as safe or safer rear facing in the front seat compared to the rear for several reasons. Dashboards are designed for absorbing car seat forces and much more. A car seat will have no impact on the dashboard, it's incredibly strong.

Again, TWE is not even close to unstable. I don't know where this speculation is coming from.

*"I personally wouldn't put a child in one. I know the seats with stabiliser legs are more money, but they seem worth an extra £50 or so to me, because their stability is based upon things that don't move - ie seat belt anchorages, seat fixing points and floors, that are all designed to take the stress and strain of accidents."*

A car seat with stabilizer, such as Izikid, Multi TEch, Hi-Way, Maxi Cosi Mobi is NOT any safer than a TWE. Us who work with car seat know this very well. We're talking about high quality rear facing seats, the safest in the world. It's long rear facing time which is the main feature, not type of seat.

Just for everyones information, an Izikid X2 or Isofix is not any safer than a TWE. They are good seats but not any safer than TWE, Mobi, Hi-Way, DuoLogic, Multi TEch, etc. The car seats we're talking about are equally safe. A seat with support leg, like Hi-Way is very safe but TWE is just as safe. Please don't rely on some random subjective test, it doesn't say much. May I humbly ask for a little more knowledge instead of confusing parents with a number of incorrect statements.

Hi-Way is one of the most comfortable seats around. My 3- year old daughter uses one and my son used one previously. It's also the most sold car seat in Sweden and virtually without complaints. One minor flaw is that support leg doesn't always reach floor. Seat is then leaned against front seat, like TWE, since this is very safe. If possible all seats are installed both with foot prop AND leaning against front seat/dashboard.

Rear facing Swedish car seat were designed to lean against dashboard or front seat. Saying this is not suitable is something every expert will disagree with

I have English manual for the TWE in case anyone needs one. I also have lots of photos of TWE in different cars and with different kids in them. I can be reached at hakan@carseat.se

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