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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, a little background here. My wife and I currently own an '03 Olds Silouette, a 2001 Grand Prix GTP (my baby), and a '91 Buick LeSabre as a winter beater. My wife has been on leave from her teaching job for the last two years while we had kids #3&4. We've been fine so far having only one vehicle that can haul the whole family, but, starting next month when she goes back to work, that's not going to cut it.

We could afford a new Traverse/Acadia if we had to, but I'd rather buy used and not have a payment, particularly considering what kids/family use does to a vehicle. Our choices (staying with GM of course) are either getting another Silouette/Venture (even the wife doesn't like that idea), a used Trailblazer EXT/Envoy XL, or all the way up to a Suburban/Yukon XL. I want a true body-on-frame truck rather than a minivan/crossover. I'd like a V8, but I don't want to pay the feed bill for a Suburban. So, a 2006 Trailblazer EXT with the 5.3L and DOD/AFT seems like just the ticket.

There's a fly in the ointment though. I seems some rube at GM though it would be funny to give you a third row of seats, but then make you do tricks if you actually want to USE them.:crazy::duh: I have an 8-month-old and a two-year-old in full car seats, and 5 and 8 year old boys in booster seats. Obviously, the older boys have to go in back where they can buckle themselves in, but that's essentially impossible with car seats in the second row.:mad:

I have no problem doing a bit of modification. Has anyone tried to remove the 20% center section of the 2nd row seats, making it essentially two 40% sections? It's difficult to tell from pictures since I don't actually have one of these yet, but it almost seems like you could cut the center section out and have an upholstery shop either redo both 40% seats or possibly make a new side panel for the driver's side 40% seat from the material off the center section.:undecided I don't know what the internal structure of these seats is; would this work?
 

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Have you looked at a trailvoy with the third row it really isn't that bad to flip up the 2nd row in my opinion, anyway you could always just take the smaller section out i don't think you would have to worry about any upholstery work. The only thing you would have to be concerned with is i believe the onstar module is under the 20% section.

Goodluck.
 

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You might be right i was thinking it's a 60-40 split but it might be a 65-35 If i get bored later i'll measure mine or maybe someone will chime in before me
 

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Roadie is correct, but that was a given... It's a 65/35.

Check out my post on installing leather upholstery in an 03 EXT. It shows the breakdown of the seats. From my experience tearing them apart and reassembling, I don't see removing the center as an option. It would take MAJOR modification to the seat.

My 2¢

Bill
 

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I don't have one, but I thought the EXT second row was 65-35% split, just the same as the short wheelbase? Not a 40-20-40%.

Hope this isn't a deal-killer.
Roadie, you are correct. The OP was asking about converting to a 40-20-40 type configuration (or maybe more like 35-30-35). The larger seat latches on the edge, right beside the smaller seat so it wouldn't be trivial to cut the seat cushion. You may be able to modify the seat back though.

Have you looked at a trailvoy with the third row it really isn't that bad to flip up the 2nd row in my opinion, anyway you could always just take the smaller section out i don't think you would have to worry about any upholstery work. The only thing you would have to be concerned with is i believe the onstar module is under the 20% section.
There is nothing attached to the bottom of the seats. There is a fusebox on the floor under the seat though. Kind of hard to flip up the seat with a child seat belted in.

Any chance the 2 car seats might fit in the middle and left hand seats, leaving the smaller seat still free to fold (probably tight but some seats may fit)? Or how about 8 year old and 2 year old in the back with 5 year old in the booster seat on the short seat to flip forward. A bit of a stretch to reach row 3 but 2 year old should be able to climb and 8 year old may be able to help.

I think there was somebody asking about putting 3 child seats across in an earlier thread. Oh, here it is. http://forums.trailvoy.com/showthread.php?t=59835 Doesn't sound promising. :(
 

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i have an EXT, and the rear is no problem for kids to climb into. i actually fit a booster seat, an infant seat, and a forward facing car seat all in 2nd row. i hardly ever use my 3rd row. the only problem we have with the 3rd row, is that if the infant seat is in the center of middle row the seat hits the side of the car seat.
 

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I have four kids myself. You may want to consider placing the rear-facing infant seat in the second row on the 35% section, making it possible to open up the 65% side for traffic. I assume your eight year old sits on a non-back booster seat? He/she can also sit in the second row, however on the 65% side. Being that he/she only needs a booster seat...it can be easily temporarily removed to let the other two children access the third row. Just take the time and buckle up the ones in the rear before the 8 year old gets seated in the second row. This is how I have it set up with my kids ages: 5, 3, 1, and newborn.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Got it figured out

Well, in the time since my original posting, My wife and I took a look at a couple of EXTs at local lots and I also discovered that the LH6 was used in 2005 as well. So, after scratching our heads a bit as to how we were going to make everything work, we found a perfect '05 silver EXT LT with all the goodies and I took it home Thursday.:)

Now that I've actually gotten my hands on one, I can see why modifying the second row seat just isn't a real possibility.

I've got the seats set up pretty much how LIL_MAC suggested, with the 8-year-old in the 65% section right behind me (he also doubles as in-flight entertainment director and operator of the aftermarket DVD system it came with), the 8-month-old next to him, the 2-year-old behind the 8-year-old (so I can buckle her in before I flip the seat back down) and the 5-year old fills out the back row.:grouphug:

For the life of me, I don't see how you could have an infant seat, a full car seat, and a back-less booster all in the second row.:confused:

I have to admit, the wife's Silouette kicks the TB's butt for shear ease of kid hauling, with its dual remote-operated doors and captain's chairs in the second row, but I'll put up with a bit of extra hassle to preserve my masculinity.:thumbsup: It's also good to finally have a true RWD V8 powered vehicle back in the stable. It's bee 8 long years since I sold my ZZ4 motivated '83 1/2 ton that got me through college in favor of a more practical and chick-friendly mode of transport. A 2-door GTP that had a CAI and smaller SC pulley before it was even a week old is practical, right?:cool:
 
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