Re: IML: seat belts 1958
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Re: IML: seat belts 1958

The '70 Chrysler 300 I drove in college was a 4 door hard-top with shoulder belts for the front seat. The shoulder belts did not retract but instead were folded at the top of the windows, along the edge of the headliner, with clips to hold them up there when not in use. I wore them every time I drove the car. They were not as easy to use as retractable shoulder belts, but I felt a lot safer using them! The '70 was the first car that I had with seat belts, as my previous/first car, a '62 Chevy, didn't have them. I tasted the metal dashboard of the Chevy when I was rear-ended when I was about 19 (I was the passenger at the time. The driver hit the steering wheel) and I've worn seatbelts like religion ever since. I won't even move a car in the driveway without putting on my seatbelt.

This thread came up about 2 years ago, and I copied all of the pertinent email (providing sources for aftermarket seatbelts, etc) to my Imperial folder so I'd have the information at my disposal when it's time to install seatbelts in my '58 because, again, I won't leave the driveway without them. Taste a steering wheel or dashboard once, and you'll know what I'm talking about!

58 Southampton project.
Covington, Louisiana

Hugh, 58 Imperial wrote:
My 58 has lap only belts installed. It was that way when I got it. As the cars lack a B pillar above the door line I just can't think how you could possibly install a three point system. The lap belt is good as far as it goes but I have visions of getting my teeth bashed in by the steering wheel should the worst happen. Probably better than being thrown out of the car but a three point system would obviously be preferable. Hugh
    ----- Original Message -----
    *From:* HOFCAG@xxxxxxx <mailto:HOFCAG@xxxxxxx>
    *To:* mailing-list@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    *Sent:* Tuesday, November 06, 2007 9:51 PM
    *Subject:* IML: seat belts 1958

    Does anyone know if seat belts were available as an option in
    1958?  I know they were in '60 and I read somewhere that belts
    were also an available dealer installed option in 1959, but I'm
    not certain about that.  I recently bought a '58 Crown Southampton
    that has never had seat belts installed.  The car is in great
    shape and has an immaculate, recently restored interior.  But,
    fact is I feel uncomfortable driving w/o seat belts.  Purely a
    safety issue.
I've made the decision to install seat belts, but cannot decide what is most appropriate. Does anyone out there have an opinion? I did locate a set of NOS belts for 1960, but they are gray which
    I don't think would look good with the jade/emerald green
    upholstery.  I am leaning towards ordering green belts in a shade
    that will coordinate with the upholstery, and plain "retro"
    buckles.  Several companies I found on the 'net sell them.  How do
    I know what length to order for the front and back?  I am also
    unsure how to determine the proper installation points.


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