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Can I sit in your Caterham?


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I live in the Baltimore area but I'm happy to drive to take a seat.

 

I've finally got to the point in my life that I can buy a 7. I've been lusting after them since 2001 when I saw one for the first time at a DC region autocross. My first car was similarly silly, a VW engine powered sandrail. As such, I'm familiar with having f1-esque water spraying you in the face on the highway.

 

My wife is fully supportive and even is pushing me towards placing an order for a new one, including the delay it will take. At least a 7 is less dangerous than my bike?

 

Anyways...

 

I'm hoping to find an S3 and an SV such that I can determine which body style I would like to order. I'm 6'1 and 220lbs. From what I've read, I'm on the higher end of comfort for the S3.

 

So... Can I come sit in yours? I'll happily come to you, wear a mask, etc. No need to go for a drive. While I'm cool with the cold, I imagine others are less so.

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FWIW I also am 6'1" and 220lbs and have been told that I will fit in a S3.

 

Which is good because I recently bought an S3 via auction having never sat in one :p It arrives in 5 days, let's hope that they are right!

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Its the feet. Its always the feet that matter. In an S3, big feet are the problem. Anything over a size 9, maybe 10 is likely to have an issue. You can tweak pedal spacing and small racing booties to sort of make it work but that S3 pedal box is small.

 

Height can be accommodated in an S3 - pedal adjustment, reposition seat mount tracks back an inch, change the seat, etc. I have seen a 6'3" person happy in an S3

 

Weight is somewhat dependent on a body shape, but I am 250lbs and can fit in an S3 with the regular leather seats. Snug it is. Muffin top look definitely. But I fit. Still cannot drive as I have size 12s wide. If you fit in a regular coach airline seat width then you should fit an S3.

 

 

There are a few S3 owners down MD way - CarlB, RCollum, Jim (FE07) and others who are escaping me right now. Off the top of my head, I cannot think of any SV owners on here in that location. You may have to come north to PA, just the other side of DE border or to mine at Millville, NJ.

 

Not sure what owners are comfortable with these days with Covid - you would have to check.

Edited by Croc
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Just as another data point: I am a hair under 6', but skinny, so I fit fine in my S3 . I do sit in it and wonder how someone with more meat on their bones than me fits. My feet are size 9.5. I can drive with driving shoes, or will drive around town in boat shoes. Running shoes or boots are definitely a no-go.

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Definitely a "plus 2" on what Croc and BlueBDA said: I am 6ft3in and 210 lbs, and can FIT in an S3, but my size twelve Narrow feet can't work the pedals in anything other than socks! However, my SV is perfect, even in street shoes.

I know its too far for a test fit, but you are welcome to come to the panhandle of Florida and take a ride in my SV.

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Shoe design is as important as shoe size. My size 8.5" running shoe is way to big for my S3. Drivers shoes shrink the shoe size: My driving shoe is 1" shorter and 1&1/2" narower than my running shoe. It makes all the difference.

 

As far as height goes, the S3 can take a fairly tall person (6'3", as long as they aren't too wide). Even a short person who has the now common BMI of 30+ is likely going to have issues fitting into the narrow cockpit. A removable steering wheel helps. So does having healthy knees and an absence of low back problems.

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Now you guys are really freaking me out about shoe size =)

 

I have a size 12 foot. I have driving shoes, but from the sounds of it I'm going to need to surgically remove my pinky toes to fit.

 

:/

 

Try one. That's the only way. My old Birkin is very faithful to an original S3 and I have size 12. The driving shoes are mandatory, but then it's no problem.

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Try one. That's the only way. My old Birkin is very faithful to an original S3 and I have size 12. The driving shoes are mandatory, but then it's no problem.

 

Definitely going to try one very soon ... when the car I already bought gets dropped off on the 15th. Wish me luck!

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The other factor to consider that has not been mentioned is what seats are in the car. The original owner/builder of my car spec'ed that the seats be the old style bottom and bench back as he was tall and fit better in those, pulling out the bottom and fitting a formed bag for racing/track. When I got the car I put Tillet's in. Tillet's are definitely a more narrow fit and how wide you are (shoulders s well as hips) makes a difference. I'm 5'11, wear a large/XL shirt, and when I topped 190lbs it was definitely time to lose weight as the fit was getting tight in my S3.

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1st: Welcome Aboard

Reading through the thread I agree that "The Feet" might be an issue. I'm a size 8 1/2 [s3 Super 7 Super Sprint RHD] after trying regular shoes I switched to my normal racing shoes but was still uncomfortable. I finally tried an old worn out cheap pair of walmart bedroom slippers, moccasin type and was very comfortable. Went and bought another pair in a smaller size and they are my go to driving shoes now. I'm in Washington County and your welcome to come and try mine on anytime.

Another thing I noticed in the thread was that there are quite a few Baltimore [and surrounding area] owners.

We have set up a Facebook Group for "Caterham & 7 Owners in the USA and Canada" and currently have 187 members with 12 members within the Philly, Richmond and West Virginia Triangle and would like to invite owners in the Mid-Atlantic area to come check us out.

Edited by Scott Stoddard
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I've reached out to some of you privately. If it falls through, I'll try others. I really appreciate the assistance.

 

I think shoe size might be impactful. I wear a 10.5 or 11, depending on the manufacturer.

 

Either way, the responses have been great.

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And don't forget the possibility of reworking pedals. The Birkin has had some work. My first sportscar was a Dinalpin (A110 Alpine) and the previous owner had removed the gas pedal, leaving just the lever with a roller on the end. That worked great and was perfectly placed for heal/toe. Where there's a will there's a way.

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I'll add my 2 cents worth in the shoe dept. My normal shoe size is 10.5 wide. I have a pair of Puma driving shoes that are sized 12 USA, 11 UK, 44EUR. I would suggest finding a place you can try them on first an eliminate the guess work. I got the Puma's from an out let store, so the selection may have been limited. I wanted to make sure the width was good, a little extra length is not a problem.

I don't think I will be needed to substitute for Lewis Hamilton any time soon. :smilielol5:

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Glad to hear about a new owner. You are welcome to come try my car. I have a S3 that currently has seats that are very similar to Tillet seats in it. I also have the leather seats we can substitute. I ware size 10.5 D shoes. the length isn't the problem the width is. You need driving shoes. I use tennis shoes that are about the same shape as driving shoes. I live in Fairfax Virginia. My car has a roll cage if you want to know what it is like to get in a car with a cage and removable steering wheel.

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