The Mustang Forum for Track & Racing Enthusiasts

Taking your Mustang to an open track/HPDE event for the first time? Do you race competitively? This forum is for you! Log in to remove most ads.

  • Welcome to the Ford Mustang forum built for owners of the Mustang GT350, BOSS 302, GT500, and all other S550, S197, SN95, Fox Body and older Mustangs set up for open track days, road racing, and/or autocross. Join our forum, interact with others, share your build, and help us strengthen this community!

making more headroom

I figured I would tell my tale about seat height in the GT350 which I'm sure some of you have found out already as I am late to purchase one. But for someone going to install one, this might help so here ya go. So I recently purchased a GT350 and am slowly getting it track ready. I have driven a few GT350's in the past and drove one on track at Limerock. I never thought there would be an issue with headroom while sitting in the seat as I used a helmet while driving the car at Limerock. Well I was getting the harnesses figured out, I sat in my car with my helmet on and could not sit up without hitting the headliner. There was no way I could put the seat in a position where it needed to be for me to drive it on the track. I sit kinda close to the wheel. Also, the shoulder belt holes are too low for my long torso. I'm 6'3" tall and I know of a few drivers taller than me that the seat worked for them so my legs have to be short and my torso has got to be long. So I pulled the seat to see if I could modify the base to lower the seat. The only real way to lower the factory seat would be to cut out the slider mechanism gaining about an 1 1/2" but losing fore and aft adjustment. I didn't want to cut up the factory seat base being they are around $800 to replace. Also, the shoulder holes were to low anyways so I purchased a race seat. I went with an OMP XL seat as it had taller than most, shoulder belt openings. I built my own seat base to get it as low as possible but I could have modified a manufactured seat base to do the same. Here is a pic of my homemade base. Note it has lap belt and sub belt mount installed. Using this base and sparco side plates I can get the perfect seating position and still have an inch + or so of headroom.
my base up front.jpg

The same can pretty much be done with a manufactured base such as the Sparco pictured here. I did this for a friend of mine who has a GT350R and is installing a Sparco Ergo II. I lowered the back of the mount by cutting off the rear seat tabs and welding on straight tabs gaining about 1 1/4 inch, giving him much more headroom. The front could be lowered also if needed. For lap belts he will use the mount I made which will bolt over the top of the rear seat tabs so no raised height there and the sub belt will be attached to the rod welded to the bottom of the mount
sparco base back.jpg
sparco base with lap.jpg
I would have never thought there would have been such an issue with the seat when I ordered the car. What a pain! I will say for what little bit I drove the car so far that I really was comfortable driving the car (as long as I don't have to wear a helmet) in the factory recaros. They will go back in for street use each time when my track event is over. Once I finish up my roll bar install this weekend I will post pic of the seat mounted in the car.
 
I was very close to hitting my helmet as well and with the roll bar you can't recline the seat much either. If my seat wasn't lowered all the way I'd hit. Good luck.
 
pics of the OMP seat mounted on my base. I now have enough headroom that if I wanted to, I could run a slider mechanism just by dropping the seat one set of holes is the side plates and still have an inch of headroom.

race seat.jpgrace seat lower.jpgrace seat base.jpg
 
44
62
Exp. Type
HPDE
Exp. Level
Under 3 Years
Erlanger, KY
I figured I would tell my tale about seat height in the GT350 which I'm sure some of you have found out already as I am late to purchase one. But for someone going to install one, this might help so here ya go. So I recently purchased a GT350 and am slowly getting it track ready. I have driven a few GT350's in the past and drove one on track at Limerock. I never thought there would be an issue with headroom while sitting in the seat as I used a helmet while driving the car at Limerock. Well I was getting the harnesses figured out, I sat in my car with my helmet on and could not sit up without hitting the headliner. There was no way I could put the seat in a position where it needed to be for me to drive it on the track. I sit kinda close to the wheel. Also, the shoulder belt holes are too low for my long torso. I'm 6'3" tall and I know of a few drivers taller than me that the seat worked for them so my legs have to be short and my torso has got to be long. So I pulled the seat to see if I could modify the base to lower the seat. The only real way to lower the factory seat would be to cut out the slider mechanism gaining about an 1 1/2" but losing fore and aft adjustment. I didn't want to cut up the factory seat base being they are around $800 to replace. Also, the shoulder holes were to low anyways so I purchased a race seat. I went with an OMP XL seat as it had taller than most, shoulder belt openings. I built my own seat base to get it as low as possible but I could have modified a manufactured seat base to do the same. Here is a pic of my homemade base. Note it has lap belt and sub belt mount installed. Using this base and sparco side plates I can get the perfect seating position and still have an inch + or so of headroom.
View attachment 4020

The same can pretty much be done with a manufactured base such as the Sparco pictured here. I did this for a friend of mine who has a GT350R and is installing a Sparco Ergo II. I lowered the back of the mount by cutting off the rear seat tabs and welding on straight tabs gaining about 1 1/4 inch, giving him much more headroom. The front could be lowered also if needed. For lap belts he will use the mount I made which will bolt over the top of the rear seat tabs so no raised height there and the sub belt will be attached to the rod welded to the bottom of the mount


I would have never thought there would have been such an issue with the seat when I ordered the car. What a pain! I will say for what little bit I drove the car so far that I really was comfortable driving the car (as long as I don't have to wear a helmet) in the factory recaros. They will go back in for street use each time when my track event is over. Once I finish up my roll bar install this weekend I will post pic of the seat mounted in the car.
I am trying to parse through the information here because I have the same problem: Helmet hitting roof. I had to tilt the seatback backward to make room for the helmet, which was a real pain and far from optimal (especially for a guy just learning).

What I can't determine from the information you posted is if I can lower my seat...on the sliders...without having to buy an $800 new slider mount and hack it to pieces. I have yet to find an aftermarket bolt-on option, but I would really like one. Of course, my other option is what you mentioned; buy and install/remove a new seat on its own lowered mount for track days.

Incidentally, a quick solution would be great, as I have 2 days at Mid-Ohio on Monday/Tuesday (5/31-6/1/2021). The days popped up unexpectedly, as I happened to look at @chintrackdays to see if they operated anywhere near me and saw there was a date for Mid-Ohio, which is 3 hours from me and where I just did some driver training 3 weeks ago.
 
The easiest and probably the best solution for a person that has no headroom is just install an aftermarket race seat for track days or leave it in permanently. It's just not the cheap solution. Factory seat comes out fairly easy and race seat goes in fairly easy.
 

TMO Supporting Vendors

Latest posts

Buy TMO Apparel

Buy TMO Apparel
Top