How High Do You Sit?

Bartman

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Hey you front seaters, how high do you sit in your Champ/Citabria/Decathlon? Can you see over the center bump at the front of the cowl? Or do you s-turn slightly to see alongside of it in either direction?

Just curious. I've got a cushion filling the hole where the chute can go, another cushion that matches the seat back, and then a foam auto cushion that I use. I'm 5'11" but high-waisted so I'm vertically challenged when I sit. With my seat-pack chute on, and without the car cushion, I can see better, my eyes are just below the top of the left side window and I can just see over the hump. Sitting lower without the chute it seems too high with the chute.

Opinions please. Thanks!
 

aftCG

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Apr 3, 2018
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I'm used to flying a T-6 so the Citabria has great visibility. At 6'2" I think the cowl bump just barely begins to intrude into my forward view (so does the compass on top of my high panel). Both are narrow so I don't S-turn.
 

Bartman

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sounds like you are about where I am, if I loosen my shoulder straps for taxi I can lift up a little to see over the hump, otherwise I'm peeking left and right of the bump.
 

Bob Turner

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I do S turns out of habit, but can see over my cowl with normal cushions. Caution sitting too high; you may need a helmet in the event of a landing mishap.
 

Hiperbiper

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I'm like Bob; due to an -S2 Pitts and the Hiperbipe I'm an s-turner...
At 6 1 I can see over a Citabra cowling but still do the shimmy shimmy...
The new cushions that came with my Champ project are 6" thick so I sit pretty high up.
I've put a skylight in for extra head room and to let in a little more light...šŸ˜œ. (not really).
Chris
 

BB57

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Feb 20, 2020
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My 1967 7KCAB has what might be called a "seat pan" consisting of thin steel straps under the seat frame that create a space deep enough for a seat pack - but not one shaped like most modern seat packs. There was the red cushion below under the seat, as well as another larger pillow stuffed in the pan itself. And yet, after an hour or so, I'd still find myself sitting on the rear seat frame tube.

I removed the larger pillow, moved the red cushion into the pan (in case the straps got loose), and then added the 1" nylon straps below, secured with nylon tri-glides. The straps do a much better job of supporting the regular seat cushion, and it's comfortable even on long flights. Better yet, slightly over 50 hours later the straps haven't slipped.

I'll still go the seat pack parachute route. I'll add a cloth cover over the straps to prevent any interference with the parachute, and ensure the parachute pack and any built in pad is at least as thick as my seat cushion.

At 5'9" the Airtex seat put me just high enough to see over everything except the round portion of the cowl with 6.00x6 tires, so I S turned slightly. When I went to 8.00x6 tires I lost slightly more view, so I added a seat cushion on top of the standard cushion.


96769820_1619903904835178_3924616831616155648_n.jpg
 

Bartman

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thanks for the replies! anyone sitting high enough to clearly see over the center hump? that's kind of where I'm at with my seat filler in the chute recess and the regular cushion under my seat pack chute. it feels too high but I love the view after being too low all of this time.

love the idea of the straps @BB57 will have to look into that. thanks!
 

kubark42

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Mar 25, 2021
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Massachusetts
how high do you sit in your Champ/Citabria/Decathlon? Can you see over the center bump at the front of the cowl? Or do you s-turn slightly to see alongside of it in either direction?
I have a 1998 7ECA, with an adjustable front seat. At just under 5'11", when the seat is all the way back I have no problem seeing over the hump. I feel it's better visibility than on the Arrow I was used to flying. Two others at ~5'6" have no problem seeing over the hump when the seat is all the way forward.
 

Big Ed

N50247 - '79 Super D
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I am 5'11". I have long legs so I fly with the seat all the way back in my Super D. When relaxed, the top of the cowl is a few inches below the horizon. If I lift my head up a bit, I can see the ground about 50-100" in front of me to taxi. I have never felt it necessary to S turn in a Decathlon, as leaning my head to one side or the other accomplishes the same purpose.

I have read that the new Aluminum gear results in a higher nose, and thus presumably less forward visibility.
 

Tangogawd

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Sep 13, 2020
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Alaska
I sit as far back and as low as I can. Plane also has 31" shoes, so not much to see straight ahead but cowl. That said, I dont feel there is much need to s-turn unless I want a good look at something. moving my head left and right allows me to at least make sure I'm not going to run into anything. Still easier than the C180