soareyes
Posts: 44
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 12:51 pm
Delivery Date: 21 May 2012
Leaf Number: 020156
Location: Victorville, CA

Seat Bottom Mod For More Thigh Support

Sun Jun 03, 2012 5:46 pm

I've had my Leaf for two weeks now and I love it. However, after the first couple days of driving I realized the driver's seat wasn't as comfortable for me as some of my previous cars. I am 6"3" with a 36" inseam. For me, the Leaf seat had three problems: lack of legroom, lack of under thigh support, and lack of lumbar support. Seat track extenders from extendmyseat.com solved my legroom problem. The lumbar support should be easy to correct with aftermarket external foam cushions, or maybe adding a little extra foam under the upholstery.

That leaves the thigh support problem which I think I've solved. First, I took out the driver's seat (edit - seat removal isn't necessary, see later posts!). There are four 14mm bolts at each corner and three connectors under the seat which must be removed. Once the four bolts are out, you can tilt the seat back to get to the connectors underneath. Here is a picture of my seat removed that shows the three connectors (two white and one yellow):

Image

Once the seat is out you can play with the side knob to see how it tilts and lowers the bottom cushion. There are two bolts (right and left) near the front of the cushion that connect the seat cushion frame to the tilt mechanism as shown here by the pencil:

Image

You can also see the seat extenders above, but the cushion mod can be done with or without the seat extenders.
Hope this mod is of some benefit, especially taller drivers like myself!


Image

What I did was remove those two bolts (M8 1.25 x 20mm) and replaced them with longer bolts with washers as spacers to raise the front of the cushion. I used M8 1.25 x 30 mm bolts with a stack of washers (edit - nylon spacers work better, see later posts) about 5/8" high to raise the front of the seat cushion by about 5/8" over stock. Here is a closeup of the stock bolt removed. Once these two bolts are removed, you can see that the cushion is capable of tilt quite a bit more than stock:

Image

Here are the two stock M8 bolts (outside) compared to the new bolts with the washer spacers (inside):

Image

Here is the new bolt and spacers installed on one side. I actually ended up adding two more washers to each side after this pic was taken:

Image

If you look close you can see the new bolts and washers intalled left and right:

Image

And finally the seat is installed and you can see that the the bottom cushion is not as flat but instead has a bit more drop from front to back. It is still adjustable with the height knob if a second driver needs a higher/flatter position. I wish I had take a "before" picture for comparison!

Image
Last edited by soareyes on Sun Jun 10, 2012 7:40 am, edited 1 time in total.
Stan
2012 Blue Ocean Leaf SL
Leased 5/2012 from Fontana Nissan
Clipper Creek CS-40 EVSE

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mwalsh
Posts: 9518
Joined: Thu Apr 22, 2010 10:10 am
Delivery Date: 05 Jan 2011
Leaf Number: 0213
Location: Garden Grove, CA

Re: Seat Bottom Mod For More Thigh Support

Sun Jun 03, 2012 8:10 pm

Your user name should have been sorearse! :lol:
2011 Blue Ocean SL with 76,000 miles.
2015 pack under warranty 12/30/15.
Tinted windows.
Bridgestone Ecopia 422+ tires.
L1 EVSE upgrade.
FIAMM horns.
Superbright LED lighting.
2013 sun visors.
LED shifter.
Heated seats.
GT-R map lamp lenses.
AV L2 EVSE.

soareyes
Posts: 44
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 12:51 pm
Delivery Date: 21 May 2012
Leaf Number: 020156
Location: Victorville, CA

Re: Seat Bottom Mod For More Thigh Support

Sun Jun 03, 2012 8:40 pm

mwalsh wrote:Your user name should have been sorearse! :lol:


Ha, good one! Actually numbarse was more like it.

I just realized that anyone doing this mod wouldn't really have to take the seat out of the car. You could just remove the four bolts holding the seat to the track, tip the seat back, and then remove and replace the two seat cushion bolts. You wouldn't even have to undo the three electrical connectors.
Stan
2012 Blue Ocean Leaf SL
Leased 5/2012 from Fontana Nissan
Clipper Creek CS-40 EVSE

radiozero
Posts: 11
Joined: Sat May 05, 2012 6:01 pm
Delivery Date: 05 May 2012
Leaf Number: 8707
Location: Orlando

Re: Seat Bottom Mod For More Thigh Support

Mon Jun 04, 2012 3:59 pm

nice mod. i mentioned to the wife over the weekend that " i feel like i sit ON the seat, not IN the seat". this mod should help solve that feeling.

EricBayArea
Posts: 672
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2011 9:41 am
Delivery Date: 08 Oct 2011
Location: Walnut Creek, CA

Re: Seat Bottom Mod For More Thigh Support

Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:08 pm

Great idea! I noticed the lack of thigh support after the first week of ownership but never thought it could be fixed (easily). I will go by my hardware store and pickup some M8 bolts and some washers. Thanks!
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garsh
Posts: 1135
Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2011 5:27 am
Delivery Date: 05 Apr 2012
Location: Pittsburgh PA

Re: Seat Bottom Mod For More Thigh Support

Tue Jun 05, 2012 3:37 am

I've been compensating for the lack of thigh support by moving the seat further back, but then I have to stretch my arms out almost straight to reach the wheel. I'll have to give this mod a try. Thanks for posting! Those pics are great, and very useful!
2012 Black SV, 7 bars, 100,000 miles

soareyes
Posts: 44
Joined: Fri Apr 23, 2010 12:51 pm
Delivery Date: 21 May 2012
Leaf Number: 020156
Location: Victorville, CA

Re: Seat Bottom Mod For More Thigh Support

Tue Jun 05, 2012 7:22 am

garsh wrote:I've been compensating for the lack of thigh support by moving the seat further back, but then I have to stretch my arms out almost straight to reach the wheel.


This car really needs a telescoping steering wheel!

I've driven my Leaf a few days now with this mod, and there is definitely an increase in comfort. As radiozero said above, I am sitting more in the seat than on it. Still I think I'll try to raise the seat front even a bit more. I've got 40mm, 50mm, and 60mm bolts to play with when I get some time this week. I'll report back if more is better.
Stan
2012 Blue Ocean Leaf SL
Leased 5/2012 from Fontana Nissan
Clipper Creek CS-40 EVSE

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TomT
Posts: 10607
Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 12:09 pm
Delivery Date: 01 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 000360
Location: California, now Georgia
Contact: Website

Re: Seat Bottom Mod For More Thigh Support

Tue Jun 05, 2012 7:41 am

I guess there IS an advantage to having only a 29" inseam... :lol:

garsh wrote:I've been compensating for the lack of thigh support by moving the seat further back, but then I have to stretch my arms out almost straight to reach the wheel.
59,991 miles/12 bars/289 Gids/68.54 AHr/101% SOH/101.64% Hx 7May15 w/ new Lizard (barely made the warranty).
71,770 miles/12 bars/256 Gids/59.04 AHr/88% SOH/87.92% Hx 3Mar16 at lease return.

Now driving a 2016 Volt Premier.

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TickTock
Posts: 1701
Joined: Sat Jun 04, 2011 10:30 pm
Delivery Date: 31 May 2011
Leaf Number: 3626
Location: Queen Creek, Arizona
Contact: Website

Re: Seat Bottom Mod For More Thigh Support

Tue Jun 05, 2012 8:48 am

Thanks for sharing. This has been one of my issues, too. So simple - will probably make the mod tonight. Now if only we could figure out how to extend the steering wheel so I don't have to drive with my arms out like I'm on a Harley with ape-hangers.

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garygid
Gold Member
Posts: 12448
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2010 8:10 am
Delivery Date: 29 Mar 2011
Leaf Number: 000855
Location: Laguna Hills, Orange Co, CA

Re: Seat Bottom Mod For More Thigh Support

Wed Jun 06, 2012 8:11 am

Great pictures, thanks.
The steering wheel is too far away for me also.
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2011 LEAF, sold in 2015
2010 Prius, 2014 silver Tesla S
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