Harness Your Outer Self With The RPG Harness BarPosted in How To: Body Chassis on February 11, 2016
The factory Raptor front seat is a fantastic seat. Quality leather, options for heated and cooled seats, comfortable for long highway road trips, short jaunts to the grocery store, and everything in between. The standard three point seat belts are also excellent for these kinds of drives.
However, the desert demands more out of a seat belt. Whoop sections, jumps, and other brutal terrain place stresses and demands on the factory seat belts that they were not engineered for. And they put stresses on you. The design of the stock belt is one for the road. They’ll keep you in place during a crash, but since they only cover one shoulder, they’ll twist you up some during said crash, causing possible back injury.
Just driving off-road however, you’re subjected to virtually the same stresses as you would during an on-road crash. Sudden impacts, jarring side-to-side movement and the ups and downs that are just part of the trail will send your body flying if not properly secured. Basically, any moderately fast off-road driving means there’s a real need for competition-based harnesses to keep you from being flung around the cab without crashing even coming into the mix.
That’s because harnesses do much more than just keeping you safe during a roll over; they are imperative to giving you better control over the vehicle you’re driving and they do so by making you immobile. When you are not worried about having to keep your body under control (or by bouncing off the ceiling), you can really concentrate on driving. And concentration is everything when driving at speed, even when your head is trying to come in contact with the door frame.
Harnesses are usually mounted to the roll cage, but what if you don’t have a roll cage? Enter RPG Offroad and their RPG Offroad Harness Bar kit.
The RPG Offroad Harness Bar kit, made for both the SuperCab and SuperCrew Raptors and F-150’s, allow for a four-point harness to be installed for the front seats of the truck. The harness bar kits are made with seamless tubing, MIG and TIG welded, and powder coated black to provide a sleek, low profile appearance. The kit is entirely bolt in and comes with Grade 8 hardware. Four mounting holes per side are required to be drilled for the front half of the harness bar kit install, the rear re-uses factory seat mounting points.
This system is not a roll cage; so just because it’s made out of steel tubing, don’t think that it’ll stand an 80mph crash. An 18mph roll over? It’d be better than nothing and if you’re in the harnesses, you won’t be dropped on your head if your truck turns turtle. Since it’s made of steel tubing however, items such as fire extinguishers and other things can be hung from the Harness Bar Kit.
RPG will ship the kit right to your door and this is an install that you can do at home with basic hand tools in a couple of hours. Follow along as this Raptor becomes easier to drive quickly and with more confidence.
The RPG Offroad Harness Bar system is a way to improve the off-road driving experience, and save the side of your head at the same time.
Image courtesy of RPG Offroad
This Raptor has many mods. From suspension to lighting to a Lowrance GPS, it’s pretty set up. Now it needs to get some safety upgrades.
There is a tiny release that allows the seat to fold forward that in turn allows access to the mounting hardware. The hardware is removed.
The seat is completely removed from the truck.
If your kids are like ours, now is a good time to vacuum out the inside.
There are 3 pieces that make up the RPG kit and this is the main piece. It bolts in just behind the seats.
Each connector uses two bolts to join the pieces.
Drilling is required to affix the base plates to the floor.
The rearmost piece goes in first.
The base plate for the rear section slips over the stock seat mounting point.
Know that RPG designs the units to fit tightly to the contours of the Raptors interior, so also know that it takes a little muscle to get the unit into place.
When installing the front section, the top edge needs to go in first to get in front of the dome light.
The top is pulled back while pushing forward on the down legs to get the front unit into proper place.
The center section is slid up into place. Here’s where you find out if the front and rear sections are parallel as if they’re not, the center section won’t easily slide into place.
A little persuasion is fine, just make sure to use a plastic hammer so as not to mar the powder coating. Speaking of which, the RPG guys remove the powdercoating from the mating surfaces so the pieces fit together better.
Two Allen head bolts are used on each connection.
Four, hardened steel bolts are used per baseplate.
In a little more than an hour, the RPG Offroad Harness Bar kit is in and ready for action.
A set of Mastercraft harnesses are installed, but know that things such as fire extinguisher’s or anything that normally install onto a cage can be installed onto the Harness Bar.
With the harnesses in place, it’s time to hit the off-road and give them a try.