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Greg's Dark Blue 911 - Hacks Installation of DAS Rollbar
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Pelican Technical Article:

Greg's Dark Blue 911 - Hacks Installation of DAS Rollbar

Grego Gulik


1-2 hours






13mm socket, seat removal tools (depends upon year 911 you have), black Rust-o-leum paint, electric grinder, a helper

Applicable Models:

Porsche 911 (1965-89)
Porsche 912 (1965-69)
Porsche 930 Turbo (1976-89)

Parts Required:

DAS (Dougherty SportSystem) model RB1 roll bar

Performance Gain:

A safer, stiffer cockpit for when one goes racing or auto crossing in one's Porsche 911

Complementary Modification:

Install racing seats

WARNING: This page is still a work in progress!

I am not responsible for any problems you experience as a result of trying to do anything described here. The hack documented here worked fine for me but may not work for you far any number of reasons.

Since my 911 is primarily a track car and I'm starting to pick up some good speed on the track I figured it's certainly time to get a rollbar, just in case. I researched a variety of rollbars available for my car. I decided I wanted to stick with bolt in so I can take it out at some point if I wanted to sell the car. Most bolt-in bars require holes to be made to the floorboards. Not only does this require putting even more holes in my car but it's not the strongest way of supporting a rollbar. The DAS (Dougherty SportSystem) Model RB1 Rollbar is a bolt-in that uses existing strong mounting points. It can also be removed without any sign of it ever being there. It's a very strong and well made rollbar that weighs in at a whopping 45lbs!!! So much for saving weight elsewhere!

Before you start you're going to need a couple items:

  • A Rollbar from Dougherty Auto Sports
  • 13mm Socket
  • Seat removal tools (depends on year)

If you have Recaro SRD seats you'll need a lot more tools than that plus quite a bit of patience and perseverance.

If you're interested, my Brey-Krause harness bar is now for sale.

Oh No!!

A friend came over to help me install the rollbar that I had painted a couple days prior. I got both of the seats out to make the process as easy as possible. The rollbar went in like a charm. It required very little pulling and tugging to get the holes to line up. We were both quite proud of ourselves for installing it in less than an hour.

But then we tried to put the seats back in only to find that the front attachment point of the DAS rollbar interferes with the seat back latching mechanism of the Recaro SRD seats I had recently put in!!!! We tried to install the seats as far forward as possible and we did get the seats installed but I can't get the seat far enough back to be comfortable!! I'm 6'0" tall and my legs already feel kind of cramped!!! Take a look at the pictures below and let me know if you have any ideas on how to make this work or if I did something wrong! Please let me know if you need explanations of the pictures or if you would like another view that's not represented below. All the close-up pictures are of the driver's seat. The same problem exists with the passenger seat which is also a Recaro SRD.

However, when I went back the next day to do the modifications on the passenger seat I discovered a slightly better way of doing it. Instead of grinding down part of the rollbar's front foot lip, I found that if I carefully adjusted the number of washers between the seat and the sliders, as well as between the sliders and the original seat rails, I could align it just right. I found that I could make the sliders slide just under the rollbar's lip and still have the rest of the seat raised enough so that the latching mechanism only minimally interferes with the lip. The seat needs to be moved back with the seat back folded forward. Once the seat is almost all the way back, the seat back is then folded back and the latch will just latch and just barely touch the rollbar lip. You have to lean the seat forward because otherwise the latching mechanism will still catch on those bolts sticking out of the lip. This way you can have the latch catch just behind the bolts and just above the lip. So far it seems to be the best way of doing it as it doesn't require any grinding!

Click on thumbnail to view full-size image

View of the bar and the driver seat touching from the top.

Another view more from the side. Here you can see the contact.

Slightly different angle.

Here is a view from behind with the seat back tilted forward.

And this is with the seat back in the normal upright position.

Another view of the installation.

A final view from above.

Oh Yes!!

&Thanks to all who responded. I called Colin at Dougherty and he offered a few suggestions as well. He did also offer to trade the rollbar he sent for a different one. Unfortunately the other one requires drilling and welding and will be essentially permanent. I kept looking for other solutions.

The first thing people suggested was to put a couple washers other other spacer at the back of the seat. I did it by inserting three washers between the seat slider and the original rails. This raised the back of the seat by about 1/4" and allowed just enough clearance for the latch to no longer interfere with the rollbar. Unfortunately this didn't give me a whole lot more legroom as the Recaro sliders now hit the rollbar foot when I slide the seat back.

The second thing I did was to take the seat out to see if I can mount the sliders differently. I found a way where I could use a different rear whole and then I drilled two new front holes for mounting the sliders to the bottom of the seat. This gave me about another 1.25" of rear travel before the sliders still hit the rollbar foot.

Then finally I realized that the slider was only just barely hitting the rollbar foot. I first made sure the bolt was tightened all the way to make sure the foot was as close to the side as possible. I then got out my drill and grinding stones and started to grind away about 1mm of the foot on the inboard side. This didn't seem to be structural in any way. I ground only as far as the additional piece of steel that was bolted on underneath. This seemed to give me at least another inch of rear seat travel. I decided it's not worth grinding further as other parts of the seat would then still end up interfering with parts of the rollbar.

All in all I think I ended up with about three additional inches of seat travel towards the rear. I took the car out for a spin and found the position to be about where I had it before.

Click on thumbnail to view full-size image

The inboard side with washers.

The outboard side showing how the rails and the rollbar interact.

Bottom of the driver seat with the rails mounted further back.

Close-up of the new mounting position of the rear bolt.

By putting a couple washers between the seat and sliders the sliders can slip below the lip.

Here is a view of the rollbar foot after grinding it down a little.

This shot after touching up with some more Rustoleum shows how it relates to the seat rails.

A closer view.

Here you can kind of see how much further forward the passenger seat is before being modified.

And I can still get to the back seat to store my helmet and other track stuff.

All the well dressed rollbars this season are wearing camera mounts and fire extinguishers. But seriously, I do like to take in car video of myself to see what I need to work on for the next session, and a fire extinguisher (Halon preferably) is always a good idea especially on a track car. Fire extinguishers available here. It came with a holder that was easy to attach to the rollbar with stainless steel hose clamps. The camera mount is an IO Port and I don't remember where I bought it.

Click on thumbnail to view full-size image

The camera mount seems to work best on the diagonal bar..

The fire extinguisher mounts lower on the same bar for easy access.

The rest of these are other pictures of the install. They may be helpful to determine if we install it wrong or something.

Click on thumbnail to view full-size image

Rollbar arriving via UPS. No box?

The hardware that came with the rollbar.

The rollbar before prepping for paint.

The welds appear strong to my untrained eye.

The rollbar after painting the first coat.

I chose to paint the rollbar myself with Rust-Oleum.

The can says Flat Black but it turned out more Charcoal Grey.

Jason removing the rear seat backs.

Wow! Look at all that legroom!

The rear bolts went in pretty easily.

The front was a little more work plus we had some trouble with carpeting getting in the way.

The bar is in! It's Miller time!

Please send any comments, suggestions, corrections, etc. to me at http://www.gagme.com/greg.

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Comments and Suggestions:
Mr Love Speed Comments: Hi Everybody Anybody know will this or can I get roll bars for a convertable. Just got a scare at 120 mph and thought if available it would make me fell safer Any info ect would be appresiated Thanks Dennis
October 7, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You didn't mention what vehicle you have. I would guess someone makes them if you have a Porsche convertible. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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