Puma middle row install - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old March 21st, 2016, 06:09 PM
Iamkraig's Avatar
Iamkraig
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Kraig
1987 defender 110
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Puma middle row install

After I installed carpet into my 5 door 110, the techno interior looked lacking. I researched seating options and couldn't decide between the high end Exmoore seats and NTO puma 1/2 leather. I flipped a coin and it came up puma. I sourced a set from Johan and gave it a go.

The fronts literally took ten minutes. I still need to hook up the seat heaters, but they look great and were a direct swap.

I knew the middle row and rear lock and folds would take a bit of fitting, but I don't think I was fully prepared for all the sorting.

I read thru a bunch of posts here and defender 2 and tried to glean the best practices and an ideal solution. There was everything from pulling the rear tub and swapping chassis parts or even the whole tub for proper puma bits to the youtube video with the guy who bolts them to the alu floor and calls it a day. I hope that this can be a help to anyone trying this installation.

As a disclaimer, I am not a fabricator or engineer. I wanted to keep my truck as close to stock as possible and make any needed changes do that they look and fit properly. I wanted to keep the full headroom for the rear passengers and make the installation as safe as possible in the event of a potential accent. (They don't call then planned and I didn't want a "wish I had" moment)

There are 3 issues to contend with in installing puma middle row seats in a pre 2007 tub.
1) The seat mounts don't align with the frame attachment tabs like the original 60/40 seats.
2) The front part of the rear wheel wells are at a stepper angle and interfere with the seats sitting at the proper angle.
3) There is not proper support for center locking plate that is used in the puma seats to lock them to the tub floor when in seating position.
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  #2  
Old March 21st, 2016, 06:22 PM
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Starting with anchoring the seats to the seat riser. I determined that a steel L angle mounted under the seat riser would allow me to anchor the steel to the chassis tabs and the seats to the steel.

I had my local metal shop bend up an 11ga (1/8") piece of steel to an L on the press break.
I started with a piece 54" long and a 3" X 4.5" L. It seemed to be add big add I could fit in and figured I would trim out as needed. Now that I an done, I would recommend a 46"-48" long piece in a 3"x4" L. I would stay with the 11ga and have it bent to a 1/4" radius on a press break.

I first tried to get the whole thing in, but determined I needed to trim done of the height to make the angle between the frame and the side of the body.


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I wanted the steel to fit tight to the aluminum seat riser and saw that I would need to trim the the top 3" section of the steel to fit around the under tub supports.



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The under tub supports are 8" on centers as best I could measure, so I trimmed 2.5" wide sections 3/4" deep on 8" centers
(See next post)

I wound up also removing the rear still section to get more angle. After pulling both rear still sections, I figured out you only need to pull the left side (facing the front of the truck like you are driving).



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Trying to do this from my phone and having issues. Stay tuned and I will get this edited and completed.
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  #3  
Old March 21st, 2016, 07:57 PM
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Iamkraig
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Here is the steel with the notches to clear the under tub ribs.


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To get it in, I had to cut it in half. This will have 3 of the seat brackets bolted to one half and one to the other.



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The corners of the notches needed to be trimmed to clear.



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I slid both sections in from the left side which eliminated fighting the right side around the fuel lines.

I fit the steel between the aluminum tub and steel frame connector.


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  #4  
Old March 21st, 2016, 08:23 PM
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Iamkraig
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I needed to remove a few body shims that were between the tub and chassis mounts. Then I test fit the parts.



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And aligned them so that they fit properly at the tub ribs.



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I had to remove a few globs off seam sealer and a rivet to get the parts to fit tight to the body tub.

Once they were fit properly, I marked the chassis tabs for holes. (I used a Sharpe on the other side)



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I drilled for the thru bolts. I used 5/16" grade 8 bolts and 3/8" holes to give me a little fitting wiggle room.


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With another test fit complete, I wiped all the steel with lacquer thinner on a clean rag and gave them a coat of auto primer from a rattle can.



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Then I coated them with rattle can truck bed liner. I really like this stuff and it holds up better than regular paint. I find that a light flash coat left to dry before a real covering coat works best.



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With the paint dry, I installed the parts ava bolted them thru the original holes that connected the old seats to the chassis tabs. I made sure the steel was tight to the body before I tightened them.


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  #5  
Old March 21st, 2016, 08:39 PM
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With the steel in place and anchored to the frame and tub, I set off to install the seats. I set the seats in place in the tilted forward position and supported them so that the mounting brackets fit well against the tub.

I measured them to get then centered in the truck and fit my truck that had the 40% outer seat bracket 7 3/4" in from the edge off the seat box and the 60% outer bracket 8 1/2" in from the other side.



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I would guess this is different fit every set of seats and every truck, so take your time to get them right.

With the seats positioned properly, I made sure they were tight to the seat box and crossed my fingers and drilled 3/8" holes in the top mounting location on the seat bracket. I drilled toward the back most part of the slot figuring the seat would get pushed toward the rear when I install the bolts that go thru the vertical parts of the brackets.


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I started with the smaller seat and After the first 2 holes and installing the first 2 bolts went great, just repeat for a total of 12 times.

I am really happy with how solid the seats are mounted and an comfortable that they are safe.


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  #6  
Old March 21st, 2016, 08:51 PM
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Iamkraig
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Quick recap.

-Get a 48" long 3"X 4" 11ga L angle bent at a local metal shop on a press break. Mine cost $38. The 3" side points toward he rear of the truck when installed and it is the part that gets notched.

-cut 2.5" X 3/4" notches for the 3 tub ribs and trim the corners. Center and 8" to either side were my center of notches.

- remove the left rear rocker still section.

- cut the thing in half so that you can get it to fit by the frame.

- test fit and mark the chassis bracket holes.

- prime and paint.

-bolt them in tight to the tub and install the seats.

Next up. Trimming the wheel wells do the seats set flat.....
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  #7  
Old March 22nd, 2016, 03:13 AM
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Michael
2008 LHD Tdci 110 Keswick Green
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There are 3 issues to contend with in installing puma middle row seats in a pre 2007 tub.
1) The seat mounts don't align with the frame attachment tabs like the original 60/40 seats.
2) The front part of the rear wheel wells are at a stepper angle and interfere with the seats sitting at the proper angle.
3) There is not proper support for center locking plate that is used in the puma seats to lock them to the tub floor when in seating position.[/QUOTE]

This is how we do it .... get a plate of alloy fabricated with the step to accomodate the 3rd jump seats as well, cut inner wing, fit mod panel and tig weld into place, seam seal and repaint so the PUMA 2nd row seat sits correctly at the right angle.
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  #8  
Old March 22nd, 2016, 08:33 PM
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Iamkraig
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Thanx for the idea Mike. That looks great.
I was hoping fit something a bit easier, so I gave it a first try on one side.

I marked off what I think to be enough space. About an inch. Then looked at the angle and figured I only need the inch at the top as the seat only contacts toward the top. So I changed my marks yo connect the top square notch to the bottom point where the tub and wheel well meet


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I cut out the opening and left enough material to bend some flanges so that I can rivet a new piece in and seam seal it.


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I scored a line to make a clean bend on the side and flattened out the angle at the top to give it an even angle.


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I bent up a piece of 1/8" aluminum I had and trimmed it for the angles.


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After a bit of trimming and fudging, it fits like I had hoped.



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I left the carpet as it was so I can see how much I gained.


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This looks like I hoped and it looks great with the carpet over it. It gets the seat pretty close to the proper position and it locks onto the floor plate without any riser out spacer beneath it.


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After loking at Mike's modification and setting the puma angled side supports in place, I'm guessing I may need to go a little further toward the back at the top of the wheel well to make more of an angle.

I will give that a try on the other side and see if it works better.
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  #9  
Old May 12th, 2016, 08:17 PM
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After weeks away from it, I went back to work on the middle row install.

I determined I needed to cut the wheel wells wider and deeper to get the seats to the right angle.

I started by removing the old seat back lock mechanism as the puma seats don't need them and the seats rub against them.


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Then I mapped out a larger opening since the plate under the wheel arch that holds the old seat back latch is now or of the way.


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I figured I would go as wide as I could, so a cut at 8" and fold at 9" looks like it wild be about the limit.



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I used the new puma seat angle pad to try to determine the proper angle to cut. It looks like 2" down is perfect, but I opted to go 1.5" below the little flat edge on the wheel arch which is pretty close.



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There is a strut on the underside of the tub at this point and it needs to get trimmed back to fold all the metal.



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This looks to be the right cut out for the angles and the seat bases to clear. Keep in mind that I cut smaller than the final opening and bent the remaining parts to make the proper opening and have material to attach to.


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This is the other side with the proper marks.

To get the existing metal to bend properly, I did a lite score with the 1/8" cutting wheel on the grinder which made for a straight bend with a hand brake tool.



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Now that I had the material cut out, I needed to fill in the holes. I determined that a 12" x 12" piece of marital would work perfectly and ordered 2 pieces of
.064 aluminum sheet from amazon for $11 a piece delivered



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I mapped out the bends I would need to make up the panel. Keep in mind the the bends add to the size if you bend on the lines, so I did it a little undersized. The final panel needed to be 9" wide and 11.25" tall, so I laid it out at 8.75 x 11.125 and it came out perfect.



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One side needs a 1" down leg for attachment and the other is a 2.25" up leg to fill in the big angle hole. The pieces need to be mirror images for the opposite sides.


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I took them to a buddies who does sheet metal duct work and we used his press brake to make the bends.


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I set them in place to mark the angle of the old tub to trim. Keep in mind that I needed to trim some metal from the struts in the tub to get the 1" down leg that in toward the center of the truck to fit in the hole properly.


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A few cuts and some clean up grinding and it fits like a glove.



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I opted to use pop rivets to lock it in place.
Just drilled the 3/16" holes and popped them in. Is best to do one at a time as the affixing of the panel can cause the parts to shift and if you drill more than one hole at a time the rivets may not fit. I used 3/16" or 5mm rivets and you will need both 1/8" and 1/4" deep bodies ad some parts of the tub are double thick walls.



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After the panels were affixed, I used body seam sealer to get everything water tight. I went a little over board, but I don't want any leaks with the carpet interior and the wheel really throws the water into this area when at speed.


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I seam sealed the underside as well.
After the seam sealer dried, I re-glued /carpet back on the new arches.


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The angles and the panels really turned it great and everything clears and looks and works as it should.

I'm really pleased with the end result and I hope my trial and error and notes can help someone else do this.

Next week be mounting the center seat attachment point.
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  #10  
Old May 12th, 2016, 08:30 PM
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I got yhe angle brackets for the puma seats and tub from Zack at Rovers north.


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  #11  
Old May 12th, 2016, 08:58 PM
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Iamkraig
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The puma middle row uses a center for mounting plate that is designed to lock the seats to the frame. This adds safety plus the seat belt retainers and the center seat shoulder harness are all integral to the seat, so they need to be locked onto this plate.

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I thought I wanted to try to attach it using the factory bracket for the puma tub, so I ordered some from Zack.



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These are heavy gage steel brackets with captive nuts that mount under the tub to the frame and the floor plate bolts into the captive Nuts.

I started by removing the plastic cover and locating the plate.


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I found it easiest and best to lock the seats into the plate so that it will function properly when mounted. It's a his thing I did, because that's when I figured out that the plate is NOT centered in the tub.


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I took measurments on the plate location and held it on position as I lifted and tilted the 60% section forward and out of the way. This left 4 of the 6 mounting holes exposed.



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I drilled 3/8" holes thru the factory plate locations and stuck a 3/8" x 2" bolt thru each one after I drilled it to keep everything aligned.

The rear most 4 holes all go thru the single wall tub floor. The front 2 hit a tub rib and are over the frame cross member.



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When I went under the tuck with the puma frame attachment brackets I had planned to do some modifications and tweaking to get the puma frame brackets to fit my non puma tub. Unfortunately. With the ribs in the locations they are on my tub, I would have cut just about the entire bracket apart to make it work. I decided to abandon the puma under tub frame brackets and bolt it to the tub floor for now.

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I think I will bend up another steel L angle and use longer bolts to clamp the bracket to the tub struts. I think this will be a solid and safe solution. I will post up the details when I do it.

Overall, I am really happy with the result. I know I over did it a bit, but I think that the simple wheel week well trim and refit combined with the steel seat mount plate is not to difficult and gives a great finished product.

I hope someone else can benefit from my learning curve.

Cheers
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  #12  
Old May 12th, 2016, 10:05 PM
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Sam
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I did something very similar. Fortunately I had access to a real puma tub to take measurements from.
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  #13  
Old May 12th, 2016, 10:10 PM
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Sam
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I used the proper under tub puma cross member that the front hinge on the seats attach to, but then again I had easy access. That piece would be tuff to install without removing the tub. I can see why you fabbed something up
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  #14  
Old May 12th, 2016, 10:58 PM
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William Ficner
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I used the proper under tub puma cross member that the front hinge on the seats attach to, but then again I had easy access. That piece would be tuff to install without removing the tub. I can see why you fabbed something up


Do you happen to have a close up shot of those under tub brackets? Not the bolt in crossmember but the ones the latches bolt into.
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  #15  
Old May 13th, 2016, 12:03 AM
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Sam
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Here ya go
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  #16  
Old May 13th, 2016, 12:09 AM
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William Ficner
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Here ya go

Thanks!

What sort of hardware do they attach with? Bolts right through the crossmember?
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  #17  
Old May 13th, 2016, 05:34 AM
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Thanks!

What sort of hardware do they attach with? Bolts right through the crossmember?
If you want a set of those, I have the ones I didn't use.
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  #18  
Old May 27th, 2016, 04:08 AM
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Hello,

Can you sent a picture how you and what sort of hardware you used to attach the under tub puma crossmember? Did you used bolts through the crossmember.

greetings and thanks,
Jenne
The Netherlands
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  #19  
Old August 4th, 2016, 03:00 PM
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William Ficner
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Puma middle row install

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jen-tech View Post
Hello,

Can you sent a picture how you and what sort of hardware you used to attach the under tub puma crossmember? Did you used bolts through the crossmember.

greetings and thanks,
Jenne
The Netherlands


Just picked up a set of these brackets and thought I would add to the thread.

For those wondering how these brackets go on, they are are attached through three captive nuts in the chassis crossmember. Similar to the type you find on the bulkhead A-pillar to wings.

My chassis is a new Marsland so I'm unsure if older ones would have the holes for the captive nuts. Easy enough to add though.


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