Installing XJ13 Seating and Driver Controls
The XJ13 has a very small cabin. It also has a substantial offset in the footwell to accommodate the front wheels. We wanted to minimise the impact of this offset on the pedal systems, seating position and steering column.
In order to reduce the offset the drivers seat was placed as close as possible to the center tunnel. The passenger seat was moved closer to the side of the car so as to provide more shoulder and arm room for the driver. Both seats were angled back slightly and installed as close as possible to the firewall.
Once the seat position was determined the steering column could be centered to the seating position. Its imperative that the steering is perfectly centered and perpendicular to the driving position. This step seems obvious but I have driven cars where this is not the case!
After a laser was used to mark lines in the cabin that represented the central driving position, the pedal box was positioned in the foot well. With such a small cabin and an owner that is over 6 foot tall the standard RCR pedal system sat too far from the firewall.
The lower suspension mount was stopping the floor mounted pedals from moving forward. The car was too small for anyone over 5 1/2 foot like this! The best solution was to modify the pedal system so that the accelerator was hanging while leaving the brake and clutch floor mounted.
The accelerator mechanism was first cut from the brake and clutch assembly. The firewall was then modified so that the master cylinders could to pass though it (the other side is a dry compartment area).
This allowed the pedals to move forward by over 150mm, pushing the master cylinders through the firewall.
Mounting the accelerator pedal so that it pivoted in a manner that delivered a natural feeling heel and toe action was critical. After making some custom brackets and mounts the accelerator was installed.
The next step was the positioning and installation of the steering column. Custom brackets were made and the column modified to ensure the steering column was in the center of the driving position.
Next step on the XJ13 build is the radiator installation and planning for the coolant lines to the rear of the car.