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Old 05-17-2005, 06:57 AM   #1 (permalink)
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D.O.T.-approved racing harnesses?

I'm about to get my '82 Scrambler on the road, and I'm trying to figure out my rear seatbelts. I'm running a full soft top with a fold-n-tumble rear seat for my two daughters (almost 5 yrs. and 2 yrs., respectively). My older daughter is now in a booster seat, and I don't want to use just lap belts in the rear.

Are there any 5-pt. racing harnesses that are D.O.T.-approved? I have yet to find them. Any input is greatly appreciated.

Craig
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Old 05-17-2005, 07:34 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Old 05-17-2005, 08:18 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I found these through a Google search. Anyone have experience with them?

Schroth Harnesses
http://www.rennsportsystems.com/schroth.html

Another Schroth link:
http://www.modernperformance.com/all/schroth.shtml

Craig
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Old 05-17-2005, 08:36 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Schroth is the only harness I know of that is D.O.T. I have a pair of Scroth Auto Controls in my rig and am very happy with them. I spent hours researching what to buy and could not find another 3 or 4 point that was D.O.T.
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Old 05-17-2005, 09:22 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I haven't done any research on the topic but I don't see how a 4-point harness, properly mounted wouldn't be DOT approved. IMO, the obviously protect beyond the typical stock vehicle constraint system.
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Old 05-17-2005, 09:25 AM   #6 (permalink)
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P&T - don't try & apply logic when thinking DOT or any other govt agency.

Schroth is the one I remember reading about. I knew I would recognize the name once I saw it...
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Old 05-17-2005, 10:14 AM   #7 (permalink)
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kind of backwards thinking, but to get around the DOT bullshit just mount a set of factory seatbelts. You can remove them after you pass your safety inspection.

Kind of like when I used to drag race my old nova, they told me that since my 5 point was over X amount of years old, they were not "legal" at the track, but I they said that if I had the factory lap belt, i'd be good to go.
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Old 05-17-2005, 10:25 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by sintax
kind of backwards thinking, but to get around the DOT bullshit just mount a set of factory seatbelts. You can remove them after you pass your safety inspection.

Kind of like when I used to drag race my old nova, they told me that since my 5 point was over X amount of years old, they were not "legal" at the track, but I they said that if I had the factory lap belt, i'd be good to go.

NHRA rules state harnesses must be Replaxed every two years.

I have asked a Few law enforcement officials regarding harnesses in place of seatbelts and I was told that "even though they are not D.O.T. approved they would never cite a ticket for a driver using them in place of standard belts, due to the increased safety, However that is them and not all police."
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Old 05-17-2005, 11:19 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Yeah, I spoke with a buddy of mine this morning who is a local Sheriff's Deputy here in Michigan. He said that anything D.O.T.-approved would be fine.

In the situation where the harnesses/seatbelts came into question, I think a lot would depend on the officer you ran into (not literally, I hope), the mood of that officer at that particular time, and whether or not he/she is a Jeep fan.

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Old 05-17-2005, 11:34 AM   #10 (permalink)
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i think ive always heard that they have to be retractable to meet DOT approval, i could be wrong, just what ive picked up. i run both in my jeep, i usually just wear my lapbelt and let my factory 3pt hang on my cage
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Old 05-17-2005, 02:52 PM   #11 (permalink)
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i wouldn't bother, I've had unapproved four point harnesses for two years and haven't had any problems with the cops or inspection.
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Old 05-17-2005, 03:11 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by 73jeep
i wouldn't bother, I've had unapproved four point harnesses for two years and haven't had any problems with the cops or inspection.
Understandable viewpoint, but do the words "child endangerment" mean anything? Racing harnesses are probably a lot safer than the OEM seatbelts, but they'll be used for my 4-year old and 2 year old daughters. If I did get stopped and an officer had an issue with it, non-compliant harnesses for young kids might open Pandoras box. I definitely want safety, but I want to do it by-the-book.

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Old 05-17-2005, 07:11 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I am not sure about the DOT. ( who really ever is ) I use these: Seat Harness
If you check the link, you will see that they are just a normal seatbelt with the upper two points added. Mine release with a normal seatbelt release for the uppers also. They mount in the normal location using the normal hardware, and can be had with a retractor also if that is an issue. If your application calls for a lap belt, this will cover that, plus some. I'm not sure once you get to the newer applications where a 3point is required. I have put these in more than one vehicle without issue. I got mine from here:4 Wheel Drive Hardware for about $70 a pop including mounting hardware. They have a number of varieties, mounting styles, etc.
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Old 05-17-2005, 07:28 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I drive my jeep with 5 points all the time. No cop or inspection station has bothered me.
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Old 05-17-2005, 08:34 PM   #15 (permalink)
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in a car seat[for a child ] i always thought there was already a 5 point harness.abooster seat i can see your problem.but i believe 4wd hardware sells 5 point seat belts that buckle the nomal way.with children my biggest concern would be if they could release themselves.in the event of an accident.
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Old 05-18-2005, 02:47 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nhgpnut
in a car seat[for a child ] i always thought there was already a 5 point harness.abooster seat i can see your problem.but i believe 4wd hardware sells 5 point seat belts that buckle the nomal way.with children my biggest concern would be if they could release themselves.in the event of an accident.
Good point. To clarify, my older daughter just moved out of her convertible carseat (w/integrated 5-pt. harness), and into a booster seat that uses the factory shoulder harnesses in my YJ. My younger daughter will still be in her carseat for a while.

Craig
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Old 05-18-2005, 02:52 AM   #17 (permalink)
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although the seatbelts are an issue I think the seat itself is more of an issue - how are you going to get a 5 point to work with the booster? BTW there are boosters with 5 point harnesses in them, my wife insists on it for our kid.
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Old 05-18-2005, 05:26 AM   #18 (permalink)
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The term is D.O.T. Compliant. The D.O.T. doesn't approve anything excepts rules. Harnesses would pass with flying colors If they were tested, but a lot of manufacturers don't want the liability issues that could arrise due to improper mounting. At least thats what I was told by Bill Simpson years ago... I think thats his name anyway I was like 13-14 at the time...
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Old 05-18-2005, 07:09 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by currupt4130
... i usually just wear my lapbelt and let my factory 3pt hang on my cage
Oh, now that's really smart.
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Old 05-18-2005, 08:43 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I have run the schroth auto lock for years now and love them. They act like a regular shoulder belt leting you be able to reach the dash and lock when you need them to. I also mounted a switch on the side of both seats. with the flick of a switch the fully lock and become a locked harness. I run a junior prp seat in the back with a Jr. dragster 5 point harness for the kid. Way better than a car seat.
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Old 05-18-2005, 11:20 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1x1_Speed_Craig
I'm about to get my '82 Scrambler on the road, and I'm trying to figure out my rear seatbelts. I'm running a full soft top with a fold-n-tumble rear seat for my two daughters (almost 5 yrs. and 2 yrs., respectively). My older daughter is now in a booster seat, and I don't want to use just lap belts in the rear.

Are there any 5-pt. racing harnesses that are D.O.T.-approved? I have yet to find them. Any input is greatly appreciated.

Craig
AFAIK, the rear of CJ-7s came with only lap belts and lap belt should not be used for booster seats, it is not safe! In Indiana there is a new law taking affect later this year and all children under 8 have to be in booster seats, but there is an exemtion for vehicles with stock rear lap belts. I would install lap belts to make the CJ-8 as close to factory spec as possible (referring to the CJ-7) and try to convince the inspector that the harness is for off road, or add it later, and I would mount the harness so she sat on the bench, not in a booster, even off road, and use a 4 point harness (I don't think a 5-point would work with the fold-and-tumble. The alternative it to install a 3-point seat/shoulder belt and use the booster, and I don't think the inspector will have any problems with that arrangement.

EDIT: assuming the harness is sized for a child that is.
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Old 06-02-2005, 01:46 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Dj safety belts are DOT approved.
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