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Old 14th September 2010, 22:38   #1
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Default DIY - How To Install Original Rear Seat Headrest in Astar LXi

Hi,
It was quite shocking to know that a Rs. 4.13 Lakh car did not coming with rear seat headrests. Yeah, I am talking about my brand new Maruti Suzuki Astar Lxi. So I went on a mission to get the rear seats headrest fitted anyhow. In this post, I have covered the reason for fitting them, the way I sourced them and more importantly the fitment and the look thereafter.

The material and tools you would need are:
1) MDF Parcel Tray which atleast 2" thick
2) OEM Headrests
3) 10mm Drill Bit along with an appropriate drilling machine (or one may also go to
a turner/metal workshop for a hand drill and Tap Die)
4) M10 nuts x 4
5) Tap Die for marking threads on the Headrests' metal rods
6) WD40 (Lubricant)
7) Lots of dedication and stamina!
8) Foam Pads 7" x 7" of 2" thickness
9) Vernier Calliper or Metal Scale
Cost of Material
1) Astar VXI/ZXI rear seat headrests - Rs. 517 each
2) 10MM Drill Bit - Rs 40
3) MDF Parcel Tray - Rs 350
4) M10 Nuts - Rs 2 each
5) WD40 - Rs 30 for the small spray can
6) Labour incase you do not want to buy the drill bits/drilling machine and Tap die - (Rs 10 for drilling four 10mm holes, Rs 20 for threading the headrests' metal rods.)
7) Dense Foam Pads - FREE as I requested a custom mattress shop owner to give it from the wastage!

Background:
I was lucky that I fitted an MDF 2 inches parcel tray to house my speakers. Since my Astar Lxi did not even come with a provision to insert the headrest, which I could buy myself from a MASS. Why did I so badly want rear seat headrests? They provide extra comfort, enhance the incabin feel and my LXi looks like a Vxi. I sourced my headrest from a MASS named Zenita Automobiles at Andheri Mumbai, who in turn placed an order on my behalf at Maruti Gurgaon. I had to wait for 12 days to get my headrests shipped to Mumbai. I finally got a call from Zenita and voila!, I had my headrests.

Method
I measured the exact distance between the plastic brackets till the first metal rod using a vernier calliper and marking from an Astar Vxi parked nearby. The driver of that car luckily allowed me to take measurements.
I had earlier removed the speakers from the parcel tray.
Once I had the measurement, I drilled two holes accordingly keeping in mind that the drill doesn't end up tearing the MDF and damage the cloth on it. I replicated the same for the other side.

Option 1
Drilling 11MM holes so the headrests move up or down freely.
Using a tap die (for threading over M10 or 10mm bolts)
Fitting nuts both above and below the parcel tray in order to secure the headrests.

Option 2
Drill holes which are 10MM in diameter; the headrest rods fit in tight and will have to be hammered so they fit in tight.
In this scenario, one need not mark threads on the headrests' metal rods or fasten them with nuts.

I preferred option two as a tap die was not available but I did make it a point to list the method over here so people who have access to the tools can use this more effective method.
Once the holes were drilled, I lubricated the holes with grease/wD 40 so the headrests would go in smooth. However, I did have to put some effort to insert the metal rods in the drilled holes.
The downside to this method is, it gets a little impractical if one needs to adjust the height of the headrest every now and then as he would need to hammer it. Over here I wanted them in a Fix position.

Once I aligned both the headrest, I tipped all the four rods with small bits of foam, so a person using the boot wouldn't end up wounding himself due to the sharp edges of the metal rods at the bottom.
I fitted the speakers back onto the parcel tray and voila it was a job well done.

Incase you choose option 1, then you would need to drill four 11MM holes instead of 10MM. If one doesn't have access to 11MM drill bits, then one may file them carefully.
Now mark threads using the tap die all,the way up, on one rod each, of the two headrests. This is to ensure that one rod of the headrest moves freely and the nut on only one rod needs to be adjusted for adjusting the height and securing the headrest in the MDF tray. The procedure that follows is the same as in option 2.

The difference in the original position of the headrests (where they support your head) is a bit different as the headrests are about 1.5" away from the OEM's provision. To fix this issue, I have purchased dense foam pads which are about 7" x 7" with 2" thickness; these dense foam pads have been cut in an angle similar to the one provided by the OEM's headrest arrangement and are concealed behind the headrest covers, which I got along with my Art leather seat covers.
Please make sure you avoid using a sponge; it will not provide the firmness to your head and will compress over a few days.

So guys, this is how the 1.5" problem got solved! If you are unable to source foam pads, you may buy those neck supports available at accessory shops, but I do not like the look.

I have posted pics which will help in illustrate how I fitted it. So guys please do PM me if I my instructions are not clear. I shall wait to hear from you. If you wish to view photos of my Astar Lxi: the thread is named "Experience a Star".
Attached Thumbnails
DIY - How To Install Original Rear Seat Headrest in Astar LXi-dsc00095.jpg  

DIY - How To Install Original Rear Seat Headrest in Astar LXi-dsc00096.jpg  

DIY - How To Install Original Rear Seat Headrest in Astar LXi-dsc00093.jpg  

DIY - How To Install Original Rear Seat Headrest in Astar LXi-dsc00094.jpg  

DIY - How To Install Original Rear Seat Headrest in Astar LXi-dsc00097.jpg  

DIY - How To Install Original Rear Seat Headrest in Astar LXi-dsc00090.jpg  

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Old 15th September 2010, 10:02   #2
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Oye balle balle, fantastic job! This is really ingenious.

Is it not possible to integrate it into the rear seats?
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Old 15th September 2010, 12:59   #3
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@Karan, good work there. Hope the set up is comfortable for the passengers in the rear seat.

@DerAlte, Pls check with Riju : he was thinking on similar lines. A bit of discussion did happen on the Scorp thread.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/techni...utions-94.html (Mahindra Scorpio : Issues & Solutions)

As for me, I had started on a similar project for the Ikon, even creating a template for the shape. The idea is to fix a bolstered head-rest for the rear seats, just in front of the rear speakers. The design I have in mind for myself is a custom made unit fixed to the rear parcel shelf metal sheet.
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Old 15th September 2010, 13:41   #4
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karan a nice DIY pal. Methinks it was wise to do a permanent fixture like you have done because drilling holes in the seat mold is quite cumbersome. Getting to sit there on the original mold takes time. You need to ensure that it moves freely.

Quote:
The downside to this method is, it gets a little impractical if one needs to adjust the height of the headrest every now and then as he would need to hammer it. Over here I wanted them in a Fix position.
Since you don't have 3rd row seats unlike the SUV's its quite ok to have a permanent fixture.

parwath had to put that on hold with the scorp' since I couldn't source the head rest for the 2nd row seat. I tried far and wide for the refresh model head rests and none were available. Fellow member mooza had put me thru to someone and he also couldn't source one for me.

Maybe someday I will give it a shot, haven't checked with the dealerships as yet for a spare headrest.
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Old 16th September 2010, 00:11   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rjstyles69 View Post
parwath had to put that on hold with the scorp' since I couldn't source the head rest for the 2nd row seat. I tried far and wide for the refresh model head rests and none were available. Fellow member mooza had put me thru to someone and he also couldn't source one for me.

Maybe someday I will give it a shot, haven't checked with the dealerships as yet for a spare headrest.
Thank you all for the compliments. It is any day more comfortable than not having one at all!

rjstyles69: I suggest that you go for rear seat headrests of Suzuki Swift or go for Honda Jazz or I20 ones. I think they are pretty comfy and will look great in your scorpio. If i am not mistaken, the ones in scorpio are the same?
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Old 16th September 2010, 06:50   #6
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Riju - have you checked the Indigo Marina's headrests ? Let me know if you want me to ask my SA to get a pair.
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Old 7th September 2012, 02:02   #7
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Default Re: DIY - How To Install Original Rear Seat Headrest in Astar LXi

Am in the same league with my LXI...Was wondering if the whole back support of the rear bench could be swapped with that of a VXI.?
Any idea on the cost?
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Old 7th September 2012, 09:57   #8
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Default Re: DIY - How To Install Original Rear Seat Headrest in Astar LXi

Quote:
Originally Posted by karan1609 View Post
Hi,
So I went on a mission to get the rear seats headrest fitted anyhow. In this post, I have covered the reason for fitting them, the way I sourced them and more importantly the fitment and the look thereafter.
Great Work Karan. Now the rear seaters can also enjoy leaning on the headrest. This DIY reminds of how I installed head rests for the front seats of 118NE. I had grabbed 4 nos of the plastic height adjusters from a scrap yard. I had welded pipes inside the seat frame and inserted those plastic sleeves. So finally I had the height adjustment feature and also made the head rest removable. The only hitch is that the seat had to entirely ripped off till bare metal is visible. Probably you didnt want to risk that much as yours is relatively a new car.
-Ilango
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Old 8th September 2012, 20:11   #9
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Default Re: DIY - How To Install Original Rear Seat Headrest in Astar LXi

Thanks! Yes, I did not want to mess around with the original seats. One option I considered and infact am considering right now is to replace the rear seat backrest with the 60/40 split-able ones from A-star Spice Vxi/Zxi. This way, the space issue gets solved, as well as I can insert the headrests into the seat as originally designed.

However, the glitch is the cost of the new seats, compatibility is a questions, color matching (A-star Spice has beige seats), costs involved in customizing the seat cover from the previous back rest, or buying just the backrest seat cover and more importantly, what do I do with the back rest that comes off!!
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