Modernizing the seat belts


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8:51 AM
Jul 13, 2019
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Concord, CA
I have a '70 Satellite sedan, F8 Green/Green, bench seats. It has the non-retractor shoulder belts in the roof for driver/passenger. I noticed that when using the shoulder belts, they don't cut across your collarbone properly and I feel like they'd slice my neck upon impact.

I was contemplating ordering the color-matching "modern" 3-point belt kits from an online retailer that sells them. These kits appear to place the top of the shoulder belt at a better angle, and look quite similar to the factory ones (though the buckle covers are black; I'd probably want to paint them green.)

Some "originalists" argue that I should not change out the seabelts at all, but it's a safety issue and seatbelt webbing does degrade in strength over time. No, I'm not going to re-engineer the body structure for crumple zones or suggest adding air bags, traction control, backup camera, or ABS.

I removed the back seat to replace the taillight wiring harness and do a "deep clean". I noticed a couple of perforations at the top corners on the fiberboard backer behind the rear seat back. I was curious what those were for.

While reading through the reproduction Owner's Manual I just received, I noticed at the top of page 12: "Optional rear seat shoulder belts can be installed by your dealer." I think that explained the perforations. In the USA, this only became a requirement nearly 20 years later.

I wonder if ANYONE took Chrysler up on that offer, since seatbelt laws were just getting legislative traction at the time. Does anyone on here have a car with rear shoulder belts installed? I'd like to look into the feasibility of installing them without hacking up the car. The wife would be more agreeable to taking the kids for rides if I did.