Last week, a package containing some eagerly awaited parts arrived from the distant shores of New Zealand sent by John Gausden, owner of ST-Classic. Oh you lovely bits all naked in raw steel! These are reproduction lightweight seat brackets and they are indeed light… approx 1lb per bracket or 4lbs total for both driver and passenger set up. It’s a huge weight savings over factory and aftermarket options for those looking to shave some weight.
I am honored to be the first to receive them (aka the guinea pig). I expressed interest early on when John announced that prototypes were in development in this E911SREG post here. For as long as I’ve been around the early Porsche scene I do not recall seeing the real versions offered for sale or installed in a car. I do know that the Scareb Blue 911R has them as seen in the two photos below – photo credit to Raj.
My buddy Gib Bosworth also has a real set that were mounted on an original Recaro ST seat he purchased several years ago for his Kremer ST project. Gib provided dimensions and photos of the originals and John did further research and development and a few months later – they’re in my hands!
In looking at them, they feel more “robust” than expected which is good because I’ve read that the originals crack due to the thin gauge metal. John says they do offer “more robust” versions for “non-lightweight” drivers. At a buck-fifty, it’s not a concern for petite ol’ me. My concern for these repros, as with all repro parts, was fit. Not much room for error considering that the size of the holes were not much bigger than the socket head screws/bolts but man-oh-man…they fell right into place! You could tell they were welded on a very accurate jig. Totally pleased that I wasn’t going to have to enlarge the holes and use large flat washers to get it all bolted down.
With the brackets bolted to the car, next I checked the fit of the sliders and they were perfect as well but found that the flat metal interfered with mating the bolt to the welded hex nut since it wasn’t perfectly centerd. Not a big deal since I have a tap and die set. It’s M8 1.25 should you guys need to do this quick and easy fix…about 20 minutes…longer if you’re humming along to 16 Horsepower and doing a few fist pumps over the excitement of having these cool bit. I did get the first set from John to provide feedback it has been mentioned to him. He assures that all future orders will be checked.
Close up detail of the unfinished brackets. Since I am of “average height” I will be mounting these so that the seat will be higher. Otherwise you can rotate them 180 degrees for a lower seating position.
As you can see these brackets have no finish. Early on, John had mentioned that they would be powder coated. I requested that my set be left raw because I was going to have them locally powder coated in Fence Black to match the majority of my interior parts. I didn’t see the point in paying for a finish that I was going to strip. That’s a few Mochas from Starbucks and you really don’t want to interfere with that. However, I decided to clothe the lovely bits in Wurth Satin Black to match what the “factory” would have done back in the day. Gunther would have grabbed a rattle can from the shelf…why not me? My current state of mind is not to “over-restore”.