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Discuss the cabin from the headliner to the carpeting of your Astro or Safari van. Topics include door panels, and seat belts or the dash and carpet, trim, and seats. Talk about your center console, seats, door handles, upholstery, steering wheels or any other item in the cab of your van.
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Seats from a conversion van

December 1st 2010, 8:28pm

I am a new owner of a 2000 Astro LS and wanted to know if i could replace my interior with the interior of a Chevy Explorer conversion van. I have the seats sourced but before I started the project I was curious to know if someone has done a write up or if it is posted somewhere.

I have searched the forum but havent found exactly what i am looking for. I am really curious to know how much space will be available after the swap.
I know I am going to have to redrill holes to accomdate the new interior and cover the existing brackets that are currently in my 2 bench setup. The new setup will be 4 captain chairs (2 in the middle on swivels) and a sofa/bed in the rear with a table in the center.

Can someone point me in the right direction????!!!!

Danger

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 1st 2010, 8:36pm

I don't see why you couldn't do this swap.
Most of the conversion builders converted Astros and Safaris as well.

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 1st 2010, 8:48pm

Im looking for some guidance and wanted to see how somoene else has done it.

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 1st 2010, 9:19pm

The captains most likely will fit, but you might want to check out the width of the rear bench. I'm guessing it's going to be wider in the full size van. Also, in my old G20 conversion, the rear bench/bed had a piece behind it that extended to make the bed long enough to lay on, there might not be enough room in the Astro.

Are you getting the front seats too? nevermind, see that it's 4 captains, 1 bench.

On my conversion Astro, it has plates bolted to the floor to mount the quick-release captains in the middle and plates with welded nuts to mount the rear bench. I never removed my carpet to see if there were any mounts for regular seats, but mine came as a cargo from the factory so I doubt it. So if you're getting the seats from a conversion, make sure you get the mounting plates, as those might be hard to come by and match the seat mounts for your specific brand of seats.

-Andrew

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 1st 2010, 9:34pm

Would I be correct in assuming that the mounting points on the safari/astro 4 captain/1 bench setup are not the same as the 2 captain/2 bench set up? The only reference I have is from my fathers conversion vans where each seat had 4 bolts and we would have to get under the van to undow the seat. I may forgo the replacement of the rear bench seat and just switch to the 2 captains chairs that swivel for the middle. I just think having a couch that folds down into a bed could be really cool. I have my eye on some from a ford conversion van as well.

I will rip the carpet up this week and see what kind of plates or brackets are under the van. I am thinking that there isnt going to be any addtional support other than the horizontal brackets that hold the original seats in.

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 1st 2010, 10:04pm

If you are talking about the standard seats and comparing the 2 captains w/ 2 rear benches vs. the 4 captains w/ 1 rear bench, the rear bench is mounted the same, the middle bench is mounted with the same brackets as the rear bench but offset to the driver's side but the middle captains are bolted in. That's why there's a whole lot of posts on here of people trying to go one way or another with the middle row, captains to bench or bench to captains. GM didn't think it out very well (my Caravan can be either bench or captains in the middle, they use the same mounts).

As far as conversion vans go, that's a whole 'nother can of worms. Don't know how many different conversion companies there are, plus all the different types of seat manufacturers that they used, plus conversion vans are usually "hand made", so even in the same company it could have been different from van to van. Best bet is to find a conversion Astro/Safari that is disabled or rusting away for cheap and move all mounting hardware along with the seats over to yours.

Not exactly what you wanted to hear, eh?

-Andrew

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 1st 2010, 10:18pm

Actually Andrew, that was pretty spot on! I figured that i would have to mount the middle cpatians seats with my own configuration (whatever it may be). Especially if I want them to swivel. As far as the rear, I hope it will mount in without any modification other than cutting. I can either cut it down to size or put the mounting brackets on it from the original seat. I will post a thread so everyone can see what I am doing and how I am doing it. I will not know how deep i am into this until I get the seats.

Keep the advise coming, i really appreciate it.

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 1st 2010, 10:46pm

I've been meaning to snap a few detailed pics of my interior. If I have time in the next few days, I'll get some pics of the mounting hardware and how it's bolted to the floor. It might even be useful to you.

-Andrew

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 2nd 2010, 12:43am

Chevy Astro "Explorer" conversion vans I have seen , same body , same van , everything should swap over without any problem ,

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 2nd 2010, 4:37am

Well, if it's an Astro conversion, it should fit. He didn't post that it was an Astro "Explorer", just Chevy "Explorer" and I went with the assumption it was a full-size van. So convert away if it's an Astro!

-Andrew

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 2nd 2010, 5:00am

Mine has the bed/bench in the back, and the captains in the middle are actually from my wife's Villager.

Iceberg hit it (no pun intended) saying that every upfitter did things differently. Mine has the bed/bench bolted to the floor. There's a plate going across the van where the middle seats are, it has studs sticking up to mount the seats. I used what I could of those, then cut off the remaining studs and drilled my own holes. *note* watch the fuel and brake lines. I knicked a fitting when i did mine. I then bolted the seats to the floor with grade 8 hardware and reinforcing steel underneath. There's some pics in my gallery, if you look closely at them you can see a little bit of that plate. The van's floor is flat- no mounts at all back there.

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 2nd 2010, 5:10am

I have removed the second row captains chairs from a 99 Astro LT donor van and the seats were mounted like the front captains chairs , studs mounted to the floor , remove by unscrewing the nuts, no need to get under the van.

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 2nd 2010, 2:21pm

Thanks guys for all of the help. I am actually going to go back to the "U pull it" and see exactly what type of van it is. i will follow up after lunchtime and let you know. if my camera wasnt on the frits, I would take some pics but i am going to try and get as much info as i can. I do know its gonna be a booger just getting the freakin seats out due to another car being on top of the van......LOL, not to mention mounting them in the new van once they are reupholstered etc. I have the vision, I just have to make it work for me. While I am at it, I might as well source a table and mounting hardware. I figure i wuld get that from a boat interior manufacturer down here in FL.

in addition: Does anyone know of parts suppliers thay cater to our vans? Somewhere like LMC truck does for trucksor somthing like that.

Danger

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 2nd 2010, 2:40pm

Check out the campers if your junkyard has any. You might find a suitable table in one of those.

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 2nd 2010, 4:05pm

For the table I'd check out ALL conversion vans in the jy, full size and older vans might be the best source, since the van craze began in the late 70's, and by mid 90's it was dwindling down due to the SUV craze. Good luck on the hunt, I eventually want to change my "pink" interior for a different color.

-Andrew

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 4th 2010, 4:01am

For those conversion parts new, check out here:

http://www.v-sales.com/

and

http://www.rvandvansurplus.com/#

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 6th 2010, 12:46am

Well after looking in the local junkyards and other places, i have found that the bucket seats for the middle of the van all have 4 screws. So I will have to do some modifying. I have also noticed the captains chairs are too plush and in turn are a bit too big (because i want them to swivel 180 degrees) so I am going to have to use the same seats that match my factory front seats.

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 6th 2010, 6:11pm

In order to rotate my center captains 180*, I have to slide them all the way back, and rotate the back thru the center asle for the driver side one. You can't be sitting in it as the front of the chair rubs against the wall. The passenger side I do with the slider open so that can rotate all the way around w/o too much drama. Just remember, if you have wall mounted belts and you rotate the seat, the seat belt probably won't properly cross you. If they're mounted to the seat, that's perfect for rotating (like mine are).

-Andrew

Re: Seats from a conversion van

December 10th 2010, 4:22pm

It looks like i am going to have to bolt the seats to the floor. I am pretty sure you have to go with one or the other. The latch pin type is only for a bench seat, even it is the bucket/split type, which is just a modified bench seat. I am not sure a true bucket seat will even have the stability if they use the latch pin setup. So for stabilty and ability to swivel, and room for a table in between the 2nd and 3rd row, I am going to have to use the bolt down type.

Now if someone can show me where they have a true bucket seat (not the two bucket bench seat with a pull down table in the middle) that utilizes the latch pin setup, I would really appreciate it and love to see pics.

danger

Re: Seats from a conversion van

January 23rd 2011, 3:15am

icebrrg3rd wrote:If you are talking about the standard seats and comparing the 2 captains w/ 2 rear benches vs. the 4 captains w/ 1 rear bench, the rear bench is mounted the same, the middle bench is mounted with the same brackets as the rear bench but offset to the driver's side but the middle captains are bolted in. That's why there's a whole lot of posts on here of people trying to go one way or another with the middle row, captains to bench or bench to captains. GM didn't think it out very well (my Caravan can be either bench or captains in the middle, they use the same mounts).

As far as conversion vans go, that's a whole 'nother can of worms. Don't know how many different conversion companies there are, plus all the different types of seat manufacturers that they used, plus conversion vans are usually "hand made", so even in the same company it could have been different from van to van. Best bet is to find a conversion Astro/Safari that is disabled or rusting away for cheap and move all mounting hardware along with the seats over to yours.

Not exactly what you wanted to hear, eh?

-Andrew


this is very true infact as my van is from Canada, more specifically Chilliwack , BC about an hour away from my location..The seats in my conversion van are definatly custom, they have a metal clamp type system that is then bolted to the floor, unfortunatly they are loose so I will be figuring out how to secure them as my boy will be in a car seat in the one seat.. and the back bench will be taken out compleatly and stored... Heres hoping I dont have to fab up a better system for the seats to stay clamped to the floor and they are just loose.

Andrew
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