Q: Custom versus Standard Seat Belts
Can anyone with a factory set of deluxe belts in their bird tell me what the buckles are like. Can someone with a set measure the button area and tell me how wide the slot on the polished cover is supposed to be.
A: Deluxe: Buckle cover is brushed chrome finish, spade has narrow slot, 9/16″ wide.
Standard: Buckle cover is plastic (color-keyed), spade has wide slot, 1-1/8″ wide. The 1967 and 1968 Deluxe had a Fisher coach emblem in black on the bushbutton, while the 1969 (and later) used a GM Mark of Excellence in blue on the pushbutton.
A: Not quite sure what you refer to by ‘spade’ but here’s what I have from my original 1968 Deluxe Seat Belts:
Buckle (the part with the button – ‘Female’ half) Metal Housing, Brushed ‘Silver’ finish on top, chrome on sides. “GM MARK OF EXCELLENCE” button (black background) Slot for Latch (Male half, spade, hook) measures 2.1875″ wide
Latch (‘Male’ half that hooks into Buckle) Chrome Plated, with .50 wide x .625 long slot
1968 Firebirds with Deluxe Belts used the above components (Metal Buckles, GM Mark of Excellence Button)
1967 Firebird with Deluxe Belts used Metal Buckles with GM ‘Coach’ Emblem in Button
1969 Firebird with Deluxe Belts used Plastic Housing Buckle with GM Mark of Excellence Button (Blue background)
Why did some Firebirds come with Deluxe Seat Belts when it wasn’t noted on any of the documentation ? My 1968 RA I Conv. has it’s original, date coded correct Belts (deluxe) yet, the documentation says nothing about Deluxe Seat Belts. I’ve never seen any correct, original 1968 Firebirds with the ‘Coach’ emblem Button (not to say none were built with them) Seat Belts are yet another mystery- right up there with the ‘Bird’ Glass.
A: What I meant by “spade”, was maybe not a technically correct term by GM nomenclature, but just a simple common-sense description of the flat bladed male part that slips into the buckle assembly. I guess I think of a “latch” as something with moving parts, as opposed to what you are stating it to be, I’m assuming from GM literature.
Maybe I’m confused or just plain wrong as to when GM changed from the Fisher Body coach design to the GM Mark type.
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Content last modified: January 25, 2014 at 10:05 am