Van Build: Double Swivel Seat Install

Swivel seat time!!! The only issue is, Polly can no longer touch the floor when sitting on the seats. We'll get used to it 🙂 So worth the money!

Written By Freedom Strider

On December 28, 2019

Installing the double swivel seat is a bit of the process, but they open the space up in the van so much - there's at least another 30-40cm of space to sit and that is over 10% more space! We had a huge debate if a swivel seat would be any good for our design, but at the end the space is worth it.

NOTE

These are the steps taken to install a double swivel seat base designed by TrimJim on a Sprinter style van. The installation will differ per van and base plate brand.

1

Unclip the yellow wire

Before you even touch the seat bolts, open up the double seats and right in the middle between the two (next to the seat belt clip) you will see a tiny little yellow-capped cable.

Make sure you have the ignition of the van off, and the key out of the ignition, and gently unclip this cable. This cable is important for the airbags and seatbelt sensors. 🚨

Do not turn the ignition on before reconnecting it (or it will cost you £££ to turn the warning lights off).

double swivel seat - van conversion

2

Out comes the seat

The seat is held in with four extraordinarily tight T50 Torx bolts (Torx Allen Keys will give you the best leverage, but a toolkit with a T50 Torx will also work).

Along with these 4 bolts, you’ll also want to unbolt the seat belt bolt – also a T50 Torx.

With those 5 bolts out, you can remove the seat. Bare in mind, it weighs as much as a baby panda, so you’ll need 2 people to lift it out. 🐼

double swivel seat - van conversion

3

Bolt in the lower plate

The new swivel seat base we bought has 2 plates: upper and lower. One attaches to the base box, where the old seat used to attach to, and the other attaches to the seat.

The lower plate bolts into the same holes where the seat used to sit. With our swivel plate, we also got a set of bolts (since we have to bolt both the seat and the new baseplate in).

Make sure to bolt the baseplate in the right way around (it will only fit one way). ↩️

So far, so simple…

double swivel seat - van conversion
double swivel seat - van conversion

4

Square peg, round hole

This is where things get fiddly.

There’s a central bolt where the delicate wire has to pass up through. 

Our bolt had pre-drilled hole through the centre allowing you to pass the yellow cable up through it (you might want to use a file on the hole to smooth out rough edges).

However…there is a plastic cable connector on the cable which doesn’t allow you to pass the cable up through the bolt, so you have to disconnect the protective plastic from the wire (best explained through our video – but it involves a lot of poking around with a tiny flathead screwdriver).

Once the yellow plastic piece is off, you need to protect the cable against rubbing, so we put on electrical tape and some heat shrink to double protect it.

double swivel seat - van conversion
double swivel seat - van conversion

TOP TIP

Before attaching the top plate, thread the nut for the central bolt onto the wire. That way you don’t have to unbolt everything when you realise you need it to tighten down the central bolt.

Also thread the wire up through the small hole in the baseplate, because believe me, one the top plate is on you’ll never be able to find that hole.

double swivel seat - van conversion

5

Top plate placement

 

The top plate sits nicely on top of the baseplate, and is secured to it with six removable knobs. 

Whilst installing it, we screwed in two of the knobs to keep the plates in line and secure whilst we passed the now protected cable up through the top plate channel. Thread this cable through the washer and central bolt, and re-attach the yellow plastic wire connector (now it cannot fall back through the central bolt).

We then unscrewed the two hand knobs, twisted the plates 90 degrees so we could access the inside of the seats and then tightened the nut enough to allow the plates to move, but for the bolt to not be too loose. 😳

double swivel seat - van conversion

6

Secure, install, swivel

Align the top and bottom plates, and secure them together with all 6 knobs. 

Lift the seats back in and place it on top of the top plate. The bolt holes for the seats attach to the top plate with the original bolts. Easy peasy!

Remember to reattach your seatbelt bolt in its original hole, and now you can swivel your seat around to your heart’s content.

double swivel seat - van conversion

warning

Remember to reconnect the yellow wire!

double swivel seat - van conversion
double swivel seat - van conversion
double swivel seat - van conversion
double swivel seat - van conversion

quick look

Quick Steps Overview:

 

  1. Remove yellow wire
  2. Unbolt seat
  3. Attach new base plate
  4. Protect central wire
  5. Add top plate
  6. Thread wire through central bolt
  7. Attach seat to top plate

NEXT VAN BUILD STEP

0 Comments