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Old 08-06-2019, 03:45 AM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
State: Colorado
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THOR #16254
Installing additional seat belts in Thor Challenger

One thing that I didn't realize when I bought my new Thor Challenger was the lack of seat belts in the back of the house. The dinette has two seat belts and the sofa doesn't have any. This means that we only have belted seating for 4 people in the coach (including the two seat belts in the front seats).

I bought a couple of additional lap belts that I am planning to install this week, but seeing as this is my first time embarking on this, I figured I would see if there were any particular gotchas that I need to look out before I try this.

Should I make sure the slide is out first?

Obviously, I will look to make sure I am not drilling into anything important before I start

What other things should I make sure I do to make sure I don't turn what feels like it should be something relatively easy into a disaster?

Thanks in advance!

--Sam
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Old 08-06-2019, 03:58 AM   #2
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Model: Axis 25.4
State: California
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THOR #6582
Exam how Thor installed the belts in the dinette and use the same size bolts as washers. They use a bracket to hold the belt up to the cushion height, but you you don't need that. It's to keep the belt handy. You could sew or screw a strap/loop to the underside of the couch or just crawl under to retrieve them when needed.
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Old 08-06-2019, 04:01 AM   #3
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THOR #2829
Use caution... seatbelts are generally provided in forward facing seats only by the manufacturer.
Are you planning for car seats or booster seats? Car seats will tell you they are only intended for use in forward facing direction as example.
Where are you planning to put them? Rear facing dinette would not be my choice - as there is no head restraint for frontal collision as example
What are you planning to attach them to? Look at the structure the current dinette seatbelts are attached to. They are not just bolted to the unsupported floor. To be able to remain belted in under force of a collision is not trivial.
Make your own decision as to what is safest for your loved ones... Just donít want you to have a false sense of security if the add-ons are not up to the task.
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Old 08-06-2019, 04:12 AM   #4
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THOR #16254
Quote:
Originally Posted by gmc View Post
Use caution... seatbelts are generally provided in forward facing seats only by the manufacturer.
Are you planning for car seats or booster seats? Car seats will tell you they are only intended for use in forward facing direction as example.
Where are you planning to put them? Rear facing dinette would not be my choice - as there is no head restraint for frontal collision as example
What are you planning to attach them to? Look at the structure the current dinette seatbelts are attached to. They are not just bolted to the unsupported floor. To be able to remain belted in under force of a collision is not trivial.
Make your own decision as to what is safest for your loved ones... Just donít want you to have a false sense of security if the add-ons are not up to the task.
I do have a booster seat for my 8 year old, but we always put that on the side that faces forward. I also want to install a couple of seat belts for the sofa bed. Looking under the slide it looks like the bolts are there for seat belts as there are similar ones under the dinette where the current seat belts are, but for the life of me I cannot find where they are. I think the sofa bed is SUPPOSED to have seat belts installed, but I've looked twice and can't find them.

--Sam
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Old 08-06-2019, 12:57 PM   #5
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Model: 2015 Challenger 37ND
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smasiello View Post
One thing that I didn't realize when I bought my new Thor Challenger was the lack of seat belts in the back of the house. The dinette has two seat belts and the sofa doesn't have any. This means that we only have belted seating for 4 people in the coach (including the two seat belts in the front seats).

I bought a couple of additional lap belts that I am planning to install this week, but seeing as this is my first time embarking on this, I figured I would see if there were any particular gotchas that I need to look out before I try this.

Should I make sure the slide is out first?

Obviously, I will look to make sure I am not drilling into anything important before I start

What other things should I make sure I do to make sure I don't turn what feels like it should be something relatively easy into a disaster?

Thanks in advance!

--Sam
On my 2015 Challenger there are seat belts at the couch. One thing I found, after a cat got behind the seat, is there are many things hidden under the couch and they are not often seen. The bottom part of the couch is covered with a cheap fabric and if removed you have a better view. I found an electrical outlet and a sound system sub woofer (which Thor told me they no longer installed) under the couch.
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Old 08-06-2019, 03:51 PM   #6
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THOR #6582
As mentioned often on the forum, call THOR phone support: 877-855-2867, have your last 8 of the VIN ready. These nice folk will generally be happy to email the construction drawings for your unit. I changed out the dinette for a sofa bed. Thor sent me all the drawings for the slide assembly and the seat belt installation is diagrammed. Also ask for the pdf drawings for the electrical system (12v, 110v, gen, dash, chassis, etc.) plumbing (fress and drains), furnace and outlets (one of mine was buried under the vinyl floor), structural framing (roof, side, floor), and others. You only get what you ask for, I tried getting ALL drawings but that didn't happen. ALSO, on the Thor website there is a owner's tab where you can retrieve the owner manuals for all appliances and devices.
Good luck!
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I'm wearing trifocals now but my hindsight is 20/20.
*************
Bilsteins and Sumos front and rear...HUGE! FatMat and Hoodliner...HUGE!
Hellwig sway bars F&R, 235/85 Hankook ATM, alignment...HUGE!!!
Battery watering, 260watts Solar and BigFeets to make life easier.
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Old 08-07-2019, 03:24 AM   #7
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THOR #16254
Quote:
Originally Posted by gnach View Post
As mentioned often on the forum, call THOR phone support: 877-855-2867, have your last 8 of the VIN ready. These nice folk will generally be happy to email the construction drawings for your unit. I changed out the dinette for a sofa bed. Thor sent me all the drawings for the slide assembly and the seat belt installation is diagrammed. Also ask for the pdf drawings for the electrical system (12v, 110v, gen, dash, chassis, etc.) plumbing (fress and drains), furnace and outlets (one of mine was buried under the vinyl floor), structural framing (roof, side, floor), and others. You only get what you ask for, I tried getting ALL drawings but that didn't happen. ALSO, on the Thor website there is a owner's tab where you can retrieve the owner manuals for all appliances and devices.
Good luck!
Thanks, Gnach. I will give them a call tomorrow. You may have noticed from the number of posts on my profile (was 2, now 3 with this reply, all on this thread) that I am brand, spankin' new here and to the Thor family. I was not aware of the level of support that the Thor folks would provide. I'll be sure to give them a call in the morning and see what they are willing to send me and see what else I can find on the web site.
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Old 08-08-2019, 06:37 AM   #8
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THOR #6582
Welcome aboard smasiello. There are plenty of issues with Thor. This is a great place to get helpful info and plenty of opinion 'cuz many here have been RVing forever. It helps if you're handy but if not you can get informed before dealing with a repair pro. This forum has seen it all. Just ask.
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I'm wearing trifocals now but my hindsight is 20/20.
*************
Bilsteins and Sumos front and rear...HUGE! FatMat and Hoodliner...HUGE!
Hellwig sway bars F&R, 235/85 Hankook ATM, alignment...HUGE!!!
Battery watering, 260watts Solar and BigFeets to make life easier.
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Old 08-08-2019, 01:50 PM   #9
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THOR #16254
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gnach View Post
Welcome aboard smasiello. There are plenty of issues with Thor. This is a great place to get helpful info and plenty of opinion 'cuz many here have been RVing forever. It helps if you're handy but if not you can get informed before dealing with a repair pro. This forum has seen it all. Just ask.
While I am not terribly handy, I can often put my engineering hat on and figure things out.

On a positive note, I was able to find the seat belts in the couch last night. I was determined to find them given that I saw the bolts under the slide. I knew they had to be in there somewhere. I ended up finding them buried under the back cushion of the sofa bed. I had to half fold down the back and reach as far as I could under the couch to find them, but was able to get them out with some help from my 12 year old daughter and do some interesting gymnastics to get the belts up through the cushions, but were able to get it done.
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Old 08-09-2019, 02:00 PM   #10
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Model: Challenger 37BT
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THOR #11321
I was going to say our 17 Challenger 37 TB has seat belts for the Concrete Block Sofa.
We're looking to replace it with something you can stand to sit on for more than 10 minutes.
Glad ya found them, saved ya a lot of guess work.
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