with Chris Robbins
'95 Accent Buckets
My JX seats were starting to look pretty bad. After hearing, "'Bout time for some new seats, ain't it?" one too many times, I felt that it was time to do something about this. I liked the JX seats, so I checked with a local upholstery shop about recovering them, $300! Ouch! Wet Okole made covers for them, also a bit pricey for my budget. So I started looking for used seats at the junkyards. I needed something narrow, like the Samurai seats. I wanted them gray or black to match the Zook. And most important, they had to be comfy.
My search for seats ended the same day it started. The local salvage yard had a row of seats lined up against the wall in their showroom. In this row of seats was a 'like new' pair of '95 Hyundai Accent buckets. They looked to be about the same size as the Sammy seats and, well, they just looked Cool! These seats were clean and the dark gray cloth would match my Zook really well. One of them had a tag with "$50" written on it. I thought "$50 x 2 = $100, that's not too bad". The guy punched some numbers into the cash register, "That's $54.60". Score! Fifty bucks plus tax for the pair! After studying the new seats and comparing the rails to the Samurai seats, I saw no way of retaining the Suzuki mounting hardware. All the channels on the drivers side would have to go so I could use the Hyundai tracks. Here's what I did: I started by removing the stock seats from the Sammy. Then I proceeded to whack out all the crap on the drivers side. This is not as difficult as it may sound. All you need is a drill bit for drilling spot welds and a die grinder or angle grinder, for the tack welds. Once the stock channels were cut out, it was time to fabricate my own mounts to adapt the Korean seats to the Japanese truck. I placed the Hyundai seats in the Zook and took some measurements, then I was off to the metal shop. I picked up 48" of 2x2" square tubing. I only needed ~40", but they were going to round the price up to the next foot. If I'm going to pay for it, I'm going to get it!
I started by cutting a piece of 2x2", 19.75" long. I laid this across the floor on the drivers side, where the stock channel was spot welded, and marked the spots where I would bolt this to the floor. I drilled two 1/2" holes for the 1/2" x 1" bolts. I welded these bolts to the inside of the tube since I wouldn't be able to reach the head of the bolts once the piece was down in the floor. I drilled two 1/2? holes in the floor and temporarily bolted the new bracket down. I then put the seat back in the Zook and marked the spots where the new seat rails would be fastened. I drilled the holes(1/2? again) and welded the bolts from the inside, like the others. The inside track on the Hyundai seats is ~1? higher than the outside track, so I used a 1-3/4? bolt on the inside and a 3/4? long bolt on the outside. I ran two nuts down on the inside bolt to make up for the uneven rails. I put the seat back in (good thing these aren?t heavy!), marked and drilled the two back holes and bolted the seat right to the floor. I used big fender washers on the top and bottom of the floor where the seat is bolted down. The area where the rear outside hole will need to be is directly under the seat belt attachment point, so the sheetmetal in this area is pretty thick. It?s still a good idea to use washers. The new seats are a Big improvement over the thrashed JX seats. The foam is nice and firm with lots more lower back support. Total invested in seats, steel, and hardware = ~$70.