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View Full Version : Head hitting roof? (Head room problem especially when autoxing with a helmet)


David A.
01-13-2006, 01:29 AM
I have been having this problem for a little while now...

I used to have an E46 325ci and I autoxed with it but I always had problems with my helmet hitting the roof. I always have the seat at the lowest position (in daily driving as well) and I do sit up fairly straight. You could compare it to any Recaro or Sparco seating position. My problem, though, is that since then, I have grown another 2 inches and now in my E46 330ci if I actually sit up straight, I can slightly touch the roof...if I am having a bad hair day, I can actually feel it when sitting normally.

I was just at our local autox two weekends ago and I had my normal full face helmet on and I had to literally scrunch down so I could sit in the car with out nailing the top. Is there any sort of set up that will allow me to sit even lower in the car or has anyone tried any aftermarket seats that will keep this from happening...

BTW - It's not like I am extremely tall...I am 6'2" and I am sure that there are some guys on here that have to be much taller. I don't want to compromise my seating position, though...because I love sitting up straight...it's just more supportive. Anyway, let me know if you guys have any tips...until then, I guess I'll just be scrunching down with the helmet on.

akhbhaat
01-13-2006, 01:41 AM
I'm just over six feet tall and I have no problems with head room (there was a slight issue with the helmet on, but I did have my seat raised as high as it would go at that point, so lowering a bit did wonders). However, I'm pretty sure that my sedan has an extra bit of headroom, in addition to the two inches of height you have on me already. You should have gotten a sedan, like I told you. :P

That aside, what you should probably do is recline your seat a bit and move the bottom of the seat forward to compensate and keep the steering wheel within comfortable reach. Do know that your moonroof is eating up some of your available headroom, but there's obviously nothing you can do about that. I don't know the specifics of your seating position, but I do remember that it felt to me like you were already sitting really close when I drove your car, so you may only need to recline a bit. Your feet will still reach the pedals easily and the wheel should still be within easy reach. I really don't think a 6'2" guy should be having too many problems with headroom in an E46, even the coupe. Obviously that changes with a helmet on, but for normal driving you should have no problems.

David A.
01-13-2006, 02:54 AM
I'm just over six feet tall and I have no problems with head room (there was a slight issue with the helmet on, but I did have my seat raised as high as it would go at that point, so lowering a bit did wonders). However, I'm pretty sure that my sedan has an extra bit of headroom, in addition to the two inches of height you have on me already. You should have gotten a sedan, like I told you. :P

That aside, what you should probably do is recline your seat a bit and move the bottom of the seat forward to compensate and keep the steering wheel within comfortable reach. Do know that your moonroof is eating up some of your available headroom, but there's obviously nothing you can do about that. I don't know the specifics of your seating position, but I do remember that it felt to me like you were already sitting really close when I drove your car, so you may only need to recline a bit. Your feet will still reach the pedals easily and the wheel should still be within easy reach. I really don't think a 6'2" guy should be having too many problems with headroom in an E46, even the coupe. Obviously that changes with a helmet on, but for normal driving you should have no problems.

Yeah, normal driving is fine...I don't hit unless I am actually trying to do it. As for the moon roof, I don't think I had much of a choice. :p And for the sedan comment...you know I am a 2 door guy. :D

Malibubimmer
01-13-2006, 07:37 AM
I have been having this problem for a little while now...

I used to have an E46 325ci and I autoxed with it but I always had problems with my helmet hitting the roof. I always have the seat at the lowest position (in daily driving as well) and I do sit up fairly straight. You could compare it to any Recaro or Sparco seating position. My problem, though, is that since then, I have grown another 2 inches and now in my E46 330ci if I actually sit up straight, I can slightly touch the roof...if I am having a bad hair day, I can actually feel it when sitting normally.
How is this possible?

Height in people has two components, length of legs and length of torso. Do you have short legs and a long torso? If so, it's possible that at 6' 2" you will have clearance problems. Your only choice if you stick with this car may be to recline the seat (and move it a little closer to the pedals!).

Can you tell us your secret to getting taller as an adult. Two inches?? :dunno:

David A.
01-13-2006, 08:49 AM
How is this possible?

Height in people has two components, length of legs and length of torso. Do you have short legs and a long torso? If so, it's possible that at 6' 2" you will have clearance problems. Your only choice if you stick with this car may be to recline the seat (and move it a little closer to the pedals!).

Can you tell us your secret to getting taller as an adult. Two inches?? :dunno:

No..if anything I have longer legs...Anyway, I am guessing it is just my seating position. Like I said...it's fine driving around normally. I have about and inch and a half of clearence. It's only when I put on the helmet that I have the real problem...

As for my increase in height...just because I can speak/type, possess the mentality of one, and, for the most part, do all of the related tasks adults are associated with, does not mean that I am quite an adult...just yet. ;) Why, did I fool you?

Malibubimmer
01-13-2006, 08:22 PM
No..if anything I have longer legs...Anyway, I am guessing it is just my seating position. Like I said...it's fine driving around normally. I have about and inch and a half of clearence. It's only when I put on the helmet that I have the real problem...

As for my increase in height...just because I can speak/type, possess the mentality of one, and, for the most part, do all of the related tasks adults are associated with, does not mean that I am quite an adult...just yet. ;) Why, did I fool you?
Sounds like you need a CF helmet. And, yes, you did a good job -- better than most -- of pretending to be an adult. How old are you - 40?

Chris90
01-13-2006, 09:02 PM
What kind of helmet is it? Some stick up more than others, I think Bioffes (sp?) are more compact.

BMW coupes have less headroom than sedans, and deleting the moonroof would have saved you an inch and a half or so.

Nothing much you can do about it now though, next time get a sedan or order one without the moonroof.

David A.
01-13-2006, 09:44 PM
Sounds like you need a CF helmet. And, yes, you did a good job -- better than most -- of pretending to be an adult. How old are you - 40?

17...but who's counting...:p



What kind of helmet is it? Some stick up more than others, I think Bioffes (sp?) are more compact.

BMW coupes have less headroom than sedans, and deleting the moonroof would have saved you an inch and a half or so.

Nothing much you can do about it now though, next time get a sedan or order one without the moonroof.

Right. Next time I will have the sunroof delete. Anyway, the helmet is a full faced HJC (which, yes, does have quite a bit of plastic considering it is a full on DOT motorcycle helmet) but it is extremely comfortable.

Malibubimmer
01-13-2006, 10:02 PM
17? Amazing. How long have you been driving? And it's great that on a Board like this old geezers like me (60) and young pre 'snappers (whippersnappers) like you converse on the same level. But, as I said, you're more adult than most.

David A.
01-13-2006, 10:37 PM
17? Amazing. How long have you been driving? And it's great that on a Board like this old geezers like me (60) and young pre 'snappers (whippersnappers) like you converse on the same level. But, as I said, you're more adult than most.

Ahh, thanks...it's great, the internet...allowing anyone and everyone to talk through an equal medium. :)

As for my driving history - My family has always been involved in motorsports. My mom and my dad actually met at an SCCA Club Racing event (both were drivers in the 80's :rofl: ). My parents have always been my biggest influence on my driving...and that, well, has worked against me in the past; they both have an extremely heavy right foot. I used to race dirtbikes on the FTR (Florida Trail Riders) circuit and that is where I learned the concept of a manual gearbox. From there on, my dad taught me how to drive manual on possibly the worst possible car to learn manual on...a 1970 Jaguar XKE which didn't have the strongest synchros in the world. ;) I started early on in racing (age 10) with 125cc shifter carts and ended up getting into Boy Scouts...which took up more time than I had for racing and consequently halted my racing "career". I recently (16) started to autocross...I love it! I am planning on getting my SCCA license after a few more years of autocross (hopefully by 19) and I will probably find a nice E30 and start doing club racing. Anyway...that's my driving history...hope I didn't ramble on for too long. :)

By the way...this may bring back some crazy flashbacks for you...considering you had a 3.0cs...

This is me on the back of my dad's 3.0cs (Alpine white on Ox blood red)...man, that picture must be from 1988! :) You can also spy the BMWCCA sticker in the center of the rear window...long time members. :)

http://img353.imageshack.us/img353/9125/scan00142nz.jpg (http://imageshack.us)

Malibubimmer
01-13-2006, 10:54 PM
Great story, David. My (now ex) wife and I met on horseback. And my daughter now rides with each of us all the time. But she also loves Bimmers so, when she is old enough (12) I'll teach her how to drive, probably in my M9 with some kind of hydrogen power engine.