308 putting seats back in ARGR!@%*@# | FerrariChat

308 putting seats back in ARGR!@%*@#

Discussion in 'Technical Q&A' started by Quasimotor, Mar 23, 2004.

  1. Quasimotor

    Quasimotor Formula Junior

    Jan 4, 2004
    Yonkers, NY
    Full Name:
    George Avgerakis
    As many of you know, I have been laboriously restoring my 308 seats and documenting my results, and those of many of you in an article for Forza. Now the job is done and I'm trying to get the seats back in. Trouble is, the allen bolts on the inside row (i.e. closest to the center console) will only twist in so far and then they stop! Consequently the seat can be pulled up a few mm's. The bolt even still wiggles sideways, because the nut it screws into, is framed in a metal nest and not welded into place. I've tried cleaning the bolts, the socket, oil, everything. All the bolts are 10.9 and the same size. No trouble getting the outside edge ones in. What gives? Were there washers under these? I'm going nuts. Thanks for any advice.

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  3. pma1010

    pma1010 F1 Rookie

    Jul 21, 2002
    Full Name:
    Nope, they just screw in. If you look under the car, you'll see the rearmost captive nuts and sometimes it helps to hold these with an adjustable spanner or pair of channel locks while you thread-in/tighten the allen bolts. Sometimes the bolts can stretch, so you might try a new set.

    I had an issue with the fronts too. From memory, one you can reach through the circular cut out in the aluminum panel. I had to cut the panel hold the captive nut/make a fix and then straighten and repair afterwards.

    However, try a new bolt first, before resorting to more drastic measures.
  4. Quasimotor

    Quasimotor Formula Junior

    Jan 4, 2004
    Yonkers, NY
    Full Name:
    George Avgerakis
    Thanks Philip! I'll try this, but I can't believe all 8 bolts are bad. I swapped each one and each one threads in about half way (more than the depth of the nut itself) and then stops at the same point. I could use a washer and feel safe that there's enough bolt in the nut to hold the seat down in a crash, but it's still weird. I don't think it's a matter of the nut moving, but I will try securing it from beneath by threading a bolt in from below and holding that while I pilot one in from behind (kind of a double penetration thing!). ;-)

    BTW are the bolts "genuine Ferrari" or can they be obtained from a good machine store?

  5. Dr Tommy Cosgrove

    Dr Tommy Cosgrove Three Time F1 World Champ
    Owner Rossa Subscribed

    May 4, 2001
    Birmingham, AL
    Full Name:
    You can get bolts at Home Depot. Check in their fastener section and you'll find a few big drawers full of every kind of fastener you can imagine in every size and shape. In fact I bet you will grab a bunch of things you need but didn't think you could find.
  6. Ricambi America

    Ricambi America F1 World Champ
    Sponsor Owner

    I had a very similar problem with the seats in my 348. I pulled them last weekend to inspect the tracks (couldn't solve the problem however). Putting them back into the car was a major pain.

    Turns out, some carpeting had gotten all wrapped around the inside of the hole where the nut was trying to thread. I just used a smaller diameter nut, and some picks/tools to make sure the whole was nice and clean before. Then, against my better judgment I sprayed some WD40 on the nut and around the hole (carefully!).

    It was still a MAJOR pain to install... I often thought my hex wrench would snap off in my hand. With the personal strength of 12 ox, sometimes that happens to me. ;-)

    Bottom line, check for carpet fibers wrapped up on the screw holes.

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  8. enjoythemusic

    enjoythemusic F1 World Champ

    Apr 20, 2002
    Full Name:
    Dr Tommy Cosgrove,

    Agreed about Home Depot and ALSO boat/watercraft repair outlets. One day last year the 308 spent hours outside a Home Depot as i took off parts methodically and replaced bolts/screws/etc. Some parts not in Home Depot may be found in watercraft stores :)

    Enjoy the Walk,

    Steven R. Rochlin
  9. Wasco

    Wasco Formula Junior

    Dec 9, 2003
    Full Name:
    I removed the seats on my 78 308 gts for new carptet install and had not prblems with bolts. They acutally protruded thru to underside on car. At first I purchased too long of a bolt from home depot and it stuck out a 1/4 inch so reused originals in front. Sounds like you may have a cross threaded nut here.

    My point though is that you should be able to inspect the nut from underneath to see if it is cross threaded.
  10. Quasimotor

    Quasimotor Formula Junior

    Jan 4, 2004
    Yonkers, NY
    Full Name:
    George Avgerakis
    What does "cross threaded" mean? Could it be these aren't the original bolts and that someone stuck something odd in there (eight times?)? Does anyone know what the exact specification of the threads are on an 84 308 Euro? I have the feeling the road between Home Depot and my house is going to get well worn.

    BTW - any relation to Jody or John Wasko, originally of Ewing Twp. NJ?
  11. Ricambi America

    Ricambi America F1 World Champ
    Sponsor Owner

    It means the bolt didn't line up with the first set of threads on the nut, and it's going in cock-eyed. As that happens, it tends to strip (a) the bolt, (b) the nut or (c) both.

    Go to HD and buy some crappy nuts & bolts and try threading them at an angle. You'll quickly see why this is a bad, bad thing -- especially when it comes to a major safety device in your car : the seats.
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  13. ria

    ria Formula Junior

    Nov 2, 2003
    Full Name:
    hey greeck what gives ? have some OUZO and retry.
  14. Verell

    Verell F1 Veteran
    Consultant Owner

    May 5, 2001
    Groton, MA
    Full Name:
    Verell Boaen
    Sure sounds like the nuts have been cross-threaded as described earlier in this thread. It's very easy to do with the seat rail bolts. I've caught myself starting to cross-thread my seat rail bolts a couple of times myself, but backed-them out & reinstalled them.

    One trick is to not tighten any of the bolts down until you've got all bolts threaded in by hand.

    It's easy for the outer rails to be cocked at just enough of an angle so that the inner rails won't let their bolts go straight in. If the outer rails are tightened down, then the inner rail bolts feel like they're going in correctly until the threads jam. The result is an instant cross-thread! IMHO this is what happened to you.

    However, are you absolutely positively you've got metric bolts with the correct pitch? There's a common english bolt size that's close enough to the same diameter that it'll go in about 3 or 4 threads before binding up. I've had to re-tap threaded holes several times because i've made that mistake

    (Sorry, I'm traveling for the next week & can't measure my bolts to give you the exact pitch.)

    Whatever the problem, the best way to recover from it is to determine the correct size & pitch, then run a tap of that size up thru the threaded area from the BOTTOM of the captive nuts. In some models this will require cutting a hole into the Al cover below the floor pan to get at the nut. If you cut a nice round hole, you can use a std size round rubber body plug(from Auto Zone, etc). to seal it afterwards.

    Then use a matching die to clean up the bolts. A little grease or anti-sieze compound on the threads is a good idea, it'll let them engage smoothly,& will ensure they come out easily if there is ever a future need to remove the seats.

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