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Unread 11-09-2013, 01:30 PM   #1
bgohsman
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1999 WJ 
 
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Location: Grand Rapids, MI
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Wj Broken seat...everything

So, while driving my Jeep last Monday, there was a loud clunk and then the seat would rock on an angle from the rear-left to the front-right. I knew that the previous owner had cobbled a break in one of the arms that a motor pushes to move the seat. But I had no idea how completely broken the seat would end up. And I never moved the position of the seat, so it wasn't an issue.

The frame that the tracks are attached to was previously broken, and cobbled together with bolts and a piece of metal, in the front. When I took the seat out, I found that there was now a second break near the repair and also a break in the back. And when I took the assembly off of the seat, I found a break/tear in the steel frame of the seat itself that the assembly bolts to.

Oy.

I looked at picking up a used assembly. But they were almost as expensive as the after market kit I ended up with. This kit is made out of much thicker steel and should make for a permanent fix. I painted the new steel parts with Eastwood's Chassis Black and should be able to assemble everything tomorrow. But I'll first have to deal with the seat frame.

My current plan is to cut a piece of 1/8" thick, 2" wide steel stock that runs the length of that side and put it under the existing frame. Then drill through the frame and the piece of stock and rivet everything together. I may even weld it after riveting it.

After that, I suspect the seat will outlast the Jeep. Well, perhaps not the leather.

img_1770.jpg   img_1768.jpg   img_1769.jpg   img_1766.jpg   img_1764.jpg  

img_1765.jpg  
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Unread 11-09-2013, 02:01 PM   #2
dcorn
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Damn, was the seat in a major accident?? I need to figure out how to fix one of the motors in my passenger seat. The seatback won't angle back anymore, but does still go forward.
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Unread 11-09-2013, 02:25 PM   #3
Breakink
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My seat has problem as well. The motor goes out but not down so they're full extended all the way. I want to change the motor seat bracket out with a manual slide one like I have on my drive side. Do you know if they make it for the driver side? I have a 2002 WJ. thanks
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Unread 11-09-2013, 06:15 PM   #4
bgohsman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Breakink View Post
My seat has problem as well. The motor goes out but not down so they're full extended all the way. I want to change the motor seat bracket out with a manual slide one like I have on my drive side. Do you know if they make it for the driver side? I have a 2002 WJ. thanks
yes, this is for the driver's side and is for 1999-2004. but this isn't a manual bracket. it's just a heavier duty replacement for the electric seat. I have to migrate all of the motors and stuff over to it.
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Unread 11-09-2013, 07:35 PM   #5
rdkendrick
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My seat was also broken in that front bar, but on the other side. Chrysler found a used one and replaced it. I may get another 150k from it.

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Unread 11-10-2013, 01:04 AM   #6
alfaitalia
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The seat in the wj are really poor quality and made of some thin old metal. My front seats have had five repairs between them....and I look forward to the next one!.......and before you say it I only weigh about 180lb and my wife weighs half of nothing so its not that! When I look under the seats of my wives Mercedes the seat metal is two or three times a thick....another example of DC trying to save a few cents!

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Unread 11-10-2013, 05:59 AM   #7
86cj74.2L
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I've seen my share of WJ's in the bone yards and never ran across broken seat frames.

As for repairing the motors......go to the junkyard and get a seat or lower track out of a WJ. Then remove the worm gear from your motor that doesn't operate and install the one from the spare. Getting the pins out to remove the motor is far harder then fixing the motor itself. I've done it to the rear up / down motor.

As long as all you do is swap the gear it doesn't matter which seat frame your get.

If you want to swap the entire motor assembly make sure you get the correct one. The seat memory motors differ from the non memory units. But the worm gear is identical.
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Unread 11-10-2013, 07:19 AM   #8
Cirruslydakota
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When I bought mine the seat was broken in multiple places and the frame twisted. Ended up getting a whole new seat.
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Unread 11-10-2013, 07:51 AM   #9
bgohsman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cirruslydakota View Post
When I bought mine the seat was broken in multiple places and the frame twisted. Ended up getting a whole new seat.
I considered getting a whole new seat. For some reason, however, the local salvage yards don't have any WJ's in them. They just don't. If I had a Cherokee Sport, Rubicon or Liberty, I'd be all set.

Meh. It will give me another excuse to fire up my welder.
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Unread 11-10-2013, 07:53 AM   #10
bgohsman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcorn View Post
Damn, was the seat in a major accident?? I need to figure out how to fix one of the motors in my passenger seat. The seatback won't angle back anymore, but does still go forward.
No, as far as I know, my Jeep has never been in an accident. At least, there's nothing in the CarFax. However, the previous owner was a 16-year old boy. And from the cut-outs on the front fender vinyl and extended wheel hub studs that were later cut shorter, I'm assuming it was used for off-roading. Who knows what sort of beating it endured. lol
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Unread 11-10-2013, 07:55 AM   #11
bgohsman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Breakink View Post
My seat has problem as well. The motor goes out but not down so they're full extended all the way. I want to change the motor seat bracket out with a manual slide one like I have on my drive side. Do you know if they make it for the driver side? I have a 2002 WJ. thanks
Sorry for the belated response. I checked and, yes, they do indeed also make a bracket kit for manual seats.

http://www.jeepseatbracket.com/

Of course, it's only the bracket. You'd still need the tracks and the rest of the manual adjustment bits.
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Unread 11-10-2013, 08:06 AM   #12
bgohsman
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Wj Instructional Video

For anyone interested, the company that makes these kits also has instructional videos on how to install them. This turned out to be really helpful as I was about to go at it the hard way. It's actually much simpler than I though. Looking at how everything is held to gether with press rivet style connectors, I thought I'd be drilling a lot of them out to get it apart. Turns out, I don't need to drill anything.

http://www.jeepseatbracket.com/colle...eat-repair-kit



I'll post some photos of the repairs once I get it together. Have some errands to run this morning. Hoping to get it together and back in my Jeep this afternoon.
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Unread 11-10-2013, 08:11 AM   #13
bgohsman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alfaitalia View Post
The seat in the wj are really poor quality and made of some thin old metal. My front seats have had five repairs between them....and I look forward to the next one!.......and before you say it I only weigh about 180lb and my wife weighs half of nothing so its not that! When I look under the seats of my wives Mercedes the seat metal is two or three times a thick....another example of DC trying to save a few cents!

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Yeah. The metal is not only thin, it looks like it wasn't hardened properly. The breaks look like what you'd see in old pot metal emblems (cap-gun metal). There's an uneven crystalline structure to it. Steel should be ductile and malleable, not brittle. The welds held, but the rolled steel broke? Also, I weigh 180lbs. Maybe 190 with clothes, steel toed boots and a heavy coat. And the last owner was a 16-year old boy who may have been 150 soaking wet. So it's not like it's taking a beating from me sitting on it. lol. It seems like a safety issue. I mean, how much good does your seatbelt do if your seat comes out of the vehicle?

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Unread 11-10-2013, 08:15 AM   #14
bgohsman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rdkendrick View Post
My seat was also broken in that front bar, but on the other side. Chrysler found a used one and replaced it. I may get another 150k from it.

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I started out looking at used ones. For about $50 more, I got this kit. The metal is over twice the thickness. I have a [unrealistic] goal of driving my WJ over 400,000 miles. So anytime I fix anything, I go for a "permanent" fix, if such a thing is even possible. When my WJ finally gives up the ghost in some manner that makes repair unrealistic, it will become a surrogate parts vehicle for another WJ. The only vehicle I have ever loved this much is my 1970 Cadillac Eldorado. But I can't really haul stuff with that. Although, being front-wheel-drive, weighing nearly 6,000lbs. and having 400hp, I could probably mount a plow blade on the front of it...

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Unread 11-10-2013, 08:18 AM   #15
bgohsman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alfaitalia View Post
The seat in the wj are really poor quality and made of some thin old metal. My front seats have had five repairs between them....and I look forward to the next one!.......and before you say it I only weigh about 180lb and my wife weighs half of nothing so its not that! When I look under the seats of my wives Mercedes the seat metal is two or three times a thick....another example of DC trying to save a few cents!

Sent from the Dark Side using only the Force.
Yeah, it was just a cheaply made bracket. Disappointing really. How much more would it have added to the cost of the vehicle to make the steel thicker? And would the customer even notice the change in the price point? If people start to perceive that your vehicles are cheaply made and things will fall apart, it starts to degrade your brand and customer loyalty. Fortunately, I love my Jeep enough to keep upgrading the cheap stuff as it breaks.
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