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Studebaker Avanti front seats........

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  • Studebaker Avanti front seats........

    So join me ladies & gentlemen as we climb aboard the time machine and travel back to January of 1967. Watch your step disembarking the machine.....now if you look to the right you are back at Trojan Service Center, Miami, Florida, the Studebaker repair facility. You are able eavesdrop on a conversation between Richard Dahl the owner and myself. Lets listen in.............................Dick nice Avanti you have here, love the dark red color, yea, this is a very late '64 not too many made with this color. Opening the door I am curious about the front seats....I refer to them as thick seats...........Dick, these seat look way more "substantial" than the thin ones in my car... Dick laughs.......nothing great about them or better about them, all the factory did was add the back panel to the seat, does absolutely nothing...in fact look here............he points out the vinyl wear on the side of the seat and the arm rest...look he says, when you push the seat back it rubs....great engineering shaking his head. On his personal Avanti he removed that panel making it look like an earlier car.

    We now return to the present............so here is the question for Avanti owners with the thick seat backs..............is it or is it not an"improvement" over the thin style?
    Last edited by Hawklover; 02-24-2021, 07:29 PM.

  • #2
    There is a hidden improvement. The later seats have a reinforcing, tubular, frame around the inside of the fiberglass trays. I suppose this makes them stronger and less likely to break. If you have the authenticity guide, you can see the difference near the last page. I will try to post pictures later today.
    78 Avanti RQB 2792
    64 Avanti R1 R5408
    63 Avanti R1 R4551
    63 Avanti R1 R2281
    62 GT Hawk V15949
    56 GH 6032504
    56 GH 6032588
    55 Speedster 7160047
    55 Speedster 7165279

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by 64studeavanti View Post
      There is a hidden improvement. The later seats have a reinforcing, tubular, frame around the inside of the fiberglass trays. I suppose this makes them stronger and less likely to break. If you have the authenticity guide, you can see the difference near the last page. I will try to post pictures later today.
      That would be great..........btw, what is a fiberglass "tray" you mean the piece which the foam is put upon?

      Comment


      • #4
        Both the seat bottom and seat back are made of fiberglass.
        78 Avanti RQB 2792
        64 Avanti R1 R5408
        63 Avanti R1 R4551
        63 Avanti R1 R2281
        62 GT Hawk V15949
        56 GH 6032504
        56 GH 6032588
        55 Speedster 7160047
        55 Speedster 7165279

        Comment


        • #5
          Just FYI:
          Many people think that there are two types of bucket seats in Studebaker Avantis: thin-back ('63) and thick-back ('64). Actually there are three: 1963, early 1964, and late (thick-back) 1964s. Each feels different to the person sitting in it. 1963 Avanti seats and early 1964 seats look the same at first glance, but they are different. 1963 seat backrests are "cupped" vertically, whereas early '64 seats are straight-up-and-down vertically. Sitting in a '63 seat one feels "cupped" in the backrest, but the early, thin-back, straight-up-and-down '64 seat feels just about perfect.

          1963 Avanti seats were too fragile, so, evidently, Studebaker reinforced them, resulting in the thick-backrest '64s.

          To me, the thick-back '64 seats are too thickly padded (or crowned) in the middle. That might be corrected by removing some foam in the center of the backrest. (At least I am going to try that in my late '64 Avanti.)

          On a late '64 with the thick-back seats the armrest does rub the backrest when sliding the seat back. I try to avoid this situation by moving the seat with the door slightly open.

          I have two '64 Avantis, R5255 (thin-back) and R5407 (thick back). R5255's seats are easily more comfortable than R5407's.
          -Dwight

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          • #6
            I don't have an Avanti, but I would like to climb aboard the time machine and travel back to January of 1967.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Dwight FitzSimons View Post
              Just FYI:
              Many people think that there are two types of bucket seats in Studebaker Avantis: thin-back ('63) and thick-back ('64). Actually there are three: 1963, early 1964, and late (thick-back) 1964s. Each feels different to the person sitting in it. 1963 Avanti seats and early 1964 seats look the same at first glance, but they are different. 1963 seat backrests are "cupped" vertically, whereas early '64 seats are straight-up-and-down vertically. Sitting in a '63 seat one feels "cupped" in the backrest, but the early, thin-back, straight-up-and-down '64 seat feels just about perfect.

              1963 Avanti seats were too fragile, so, evidently, Studebaker reinforced them, resulting in the thick-backrest '64s.

              To me, the thick-back '64 seats are too thickly padded (or crowned) in the middle. That might be corrected by removing some foam in the center of the backrest. (At least I am going to try that in my late '64 Avanti.)

              On a late '64 with the thick-back seats the armrest does rub the backrest when sliding the seat back. I try to avoid this situation by moving the seat with the door slightly open.

              I have two '64 Avantis, R5255 (thin-back) and R5407 (thick back). R5255's seats are easily more comfortable than R5407's.
              -Dwight
              Dwight can you post some picture and the variants?

              Comment


              • #8
                At what s/n did the thick seats become standard?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by tsenecal View Post
                  I don't have an Avanti, but I would like to climb aboard the time machine and travel back to January of 1967.
                  Well it just so happens we have another departure in the next hour,in the meantime feel free to lit up your most fav cigarette, and here take a sample match book with you,,, Click image for larger version

Name:	match cover.JPG
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ID:	1882204

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                  • #10
                    Sam,
                    I am not trying to highjack this thread but I own both an early ('70) and later Avanti ('83) equipped with Recaros. There is no comparison.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Weren’t the ‘63 seats spur of the moment design modifications based on an old Alfa seat someone had lying around? ...all relating to Egbert being “too tall”? (horrid, back killing things. Maybe they fit Lowey.. ....)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Here are some pictures of 1963, early 1964, and late 1964 Avanti bucket seats. Back in the late 1960s-1970s my brother, a friend, and I each had Avantis: a 63, an early 64, and a late 64. At a chapter meeting we all attended a discussion of Avanti seats came up and all three of us tried out all three Avanti's seats. We were unanimous in preferring the early 64 seats. Hopefully, y'all will see the difference between the 63 seats and the early 64 seats. Top to bottom below they are: 1963, early 64, late 64, and early 64.

                        Click image for larger version  Name:	Avanti 1963 seats.jpg Views:	0 Size:	65.7 KB ID:	1882220Click image for larger version  Name:	Avanti R5063B, early 1964 seats.jpg Views:	0 Size:	86.0 KB ID:	1882221Click image for larger version  Name:	Avanti R5407 late 1964 seat.JPG Views:	0 Size:	85.9 KB ID:	1882222Click image for larger version  Name:	Avanti R5255, early 1964 seat.JPG Views:	0 Size:	102.5 KB ID:	1882223
                        -Dwight

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                        • #13
                          I have owned 1963 and 1964 Avantis and have ridden hundreds of miles in various Studebaker Avantis owned by others. I will start by saying that different seats fit different people. I was really uncomfortable in 1963 seats after about 35 miles. I liked the later 1964 seats that look sort of like 1963 seats, but are not the thick last iteration. For any Studebaker Avanti seats, I have found that a rolled up turkish towel at the lower back really helps. Most later, non-Studebaker, Avantis had good seats (after the Studebaker style was no longer used).
                          Gary L.
                          Wappinger, NY

                          SDC member since 1968
                          Studebaker enthusiast much longer

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            According to parts catalog, there are 2 different seat frames. The change was around serial #5361. The seat back is part number 1347450 before 5361 and 1347925 after. The seat bottom is 1347460 before and 1347913 after.

                            Any appearance of other changes must be due to foam cushions and upholstery - not the frames. I still plan on getting to the shop to take pictures..

                            FWIW, the parts catalog illustration is of the later back and bottom frames with the reinforcement.

                            My parts catalog is dated December 1963 and is likely the latest version.
                            78 Avanti RQB 2792
                            64 Avanti R1 R5408
                            63 Avanti R1 R4551
                            63 Avanti R1 R2281
                            62 GT Hawk V15949
                            56 GH 6032504
                            56 GH 6032588
                            55 Speedster 7160047
                            55 Speedster 7165279

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Buzzard View Post
                              Sam,
                              I am not trying to highjack this thread but I own both an early ('70) and later Avanti ('83) equipped with Recaros. There is no comparison.
                              I totally agree!

                              Comment

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