Radian won't tighten enough. - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 05-11-2011, 07:23 AM - Thread Starter
 
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DD 23mo old, RFing in a Radian XSTL which we recently installed. The problem is that I the belts will not tighten enough. They seem to have gone as tight as they can go, and while the straps aren't loose, they don't seem snug enough, at least not snug like I used to get with our Britax Blvd.

DH moved the shoulder straps up one level so we could get them tighter, and they seem (to me) to not be "at or below" or shoulders. They seem like they are just a bit above her shoulders to me. I can't figure this puzzle out, and I thought the Radian would be so great. greensad.gif

We had a police officer check it when we did the Great Cloth Diaper Change, and she said it's fine...but I don't feel great about it, specifically the looseness and the shoulder strap height. It seemed like she was used to seeing seats that were *really* messed up, and so ours seemed good. Thoughts?

She's 35" tall, about 27 lbs.

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#2 of 10 Old 05-11-2011, 07:38 AM
 
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What do you mean by it won't go tighter?  Remember that the straps ratchet tightly, you have to keep pulling over and over to tighten rather than just one long pull.

 

Otherwise, I find that if I try hard enough, I can always manage to pinch the straps by the collar bone on my xtsl so I just go based on how tight the chest clip is against kiddo's body.  I just make sure that isn't so tight she can't breathe but not so loose that I can tell her whole body will be able to move forward enough to risk strain on her spine.

 

Move the straps back down to the at or below position and try ratcheting (sorry if you already knew that, I don't mean any offenses... its just a common problem for people new to radians hehe) and then just make sure your child's body doesn't have space to slide around too much.

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#3 of 10 Old 05-11-2011, 08:06 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I mean that I tug and tug repeatedly and it seems like there is no more belt left to tighten, like it's all pulled through already. (I *can't* do one long pull, at this point in pregnancy anyway. smile.gif No offense taken. Plus, I have a bad back, so I always tend to tighten in little spurts, if that is what you mean.)

When we move the straps below her shoulders it's noticeably looser (and still can't tighten enough) so we moved the shoulders up one level because that way at least it was tighter.

When I say it seems too loose, I mean it's loose before I've pulled the chest clip up. The chest clip seems to help tighten it some, but isn't it supposed to be tight *before* you slide the chest clip up into place? It just seems so loose compared to the Britax we were using, which I could get tight (and not pinch) *before* I slid the chest clip up. With the Radian, between the chest clip and those comfort pads on the straps, there is not really any room to attempt to pinch anything anyway...


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#4 of 10 Old 05-11-2011, 08:15 AM
 
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hmm... is the buckle thing between the legs at the right setting?  could that make it seem loose?  ooo are you able to manually pull the straps tighter from the back?  When I change settings, I usually grab the straps in the back to pull tight on her and then pull the strap in front to fully tighten and lock into place... maybe that would help?

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#5 of 10 Old 05-11-2011, 09:58 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I think so. It's in the middle setting. DH wanted to put it on the furthest away from her to make it tighter, but then that strap is angling back toward her quite a bit, which the booklet says is wrong, that it's supposed to be more upright or angling away from her body. headscratch.gif

I'll have to check tightening it from the back. I am fairly certain DH looked at that, and found that there was a set length the straps could be, that there is a clip that both shoulder straps lock into, and that piece can only go so far.

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#6 of 10 Old 05-11-2011, 10:02 AM
 
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When my DS was about that height, the splitter plate (the metal piece that you loop the straps on) was hitting right between the back of the Radian and the cushion of my car's seat.  It would get kind of stuck at a weird angle there, which would make it feel impossible to tighten.  It helped to reach around to the back of the Radian and pull the slack out of the straps while tightening from the front.  And it also almost always helps to tighten the straps before you buckle them if you need to do significant tightening.  Pull and release a few times, then try buckling DD in to check the fit.  

 

I am able to get our Radian straps to pass the "pinch test" every time.  I would not feel secure if I could pinch any slack at DS's shoulders.

 

On our Radian, the harness slots on the cover do not line up exactly with the harness slots on the hard shell.  It looks like I could move DS's straps up one more level because the slot on the cover is right at his shoulders.  However, the straps would actually be coming from above his shoulders.  Make sure to double-check that the strap height on the shell, not the cover, are at or below your DD's shoulders.

 

Unless DS is going back and forth between cloth and disposables or light summer clothing and jeans/fleece, I find we don't need to loosen and tighten the straps very often at all. Once I got them adjusted, I could leave them there a while.  Now that he's taller and the splitter plate isn't at that difficult angle anymore, it's lots easier to adjust the straps when we need to.


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#7 of 10 Old 05-11-2011, 10:03 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beauchamp View Post

I'll have to check tightening it from the back. I am fairly certain DH looked at that, and found that there was a set length the straps could be, that there is a clip that both shoulder straps lock into, and that piece can only go so far.


Yes, the straps can only be tightened so far, but many newborns fit well into the Radian with the straps on the lowest harness height.  They will definitely be able to be tightened enough to be snug on a toddler.


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#8 of 10 Old 05-11-2011, 10:12 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mama2soren View Post

When my DS was about that height, the splitter plate (the metal piece that you loop the straps on) was hitting right between the back of the Radian and the cushion of my car's seat.  It would get kind of stuck at a weird angle there, which would make it feel impossible to tighten.  It helped to reach around to the back of the Radian and pull the slack out of the straps while tightening from the front.  And it also almost always helps to tighten the straps before you buckle them if you need to do significant tightening.  Pull and release a few times, then try buckling DD in to check the fit.  

 

I am able to get our Radian straps to pass the "pinch test" every time.  I would not feel secure if I could pinch any slack at DS's shoulders.

 

On our Radian, the harness slots on the cover do not line up exactly with the harness slots on the hard shell.  It looks like I could move DS's straps up one more level because the slot on the cover is right at his shoulders.  However, the straps would actually be coming from above his shoulders.  Make sure to double-check that the strap height on the shell, not the cover, are at or below your DD's shoulders.

 

Unless DS is going back and forth between cloth and disposables or light summer clothing and jeans/fleece, I find we don't need to loosen and tighten the straps very often at all. Once I got them adjusted, I could leave them there a while.  Now that he's taller and the splitter plate isn't at that difficult angle anymore, it's lots easier to adjust the straps when we need to.


I will try this, probably first without DD in the seat, maybe a teddy bear or something, because yes, I totally agree that if a newborn can fit, a toddler certainly should be able to fit! This is why I am so perplexed. I'll check the back again. It doesn't help that DD is not exactly helpful when she's in the seat. eyesroll.gif

I'll also check the shell slots. Good call! I was only looking at the slots in the padded cover.

On loosening/tightening, DH loosens the straps (pulls them waaaaaay out) every single time he removes DD from the seat. They are super long and flappy, and then he has to pull them all the way back in. When I only loosen them a tiny bit to get her out, he complains that he can't get her arms in. Apparently he needs gigantic arm holes or he can't do it. eyesroll.gifheadscratch.gif So...are you saying you just unclip your buckle when you take your LO out...that you don't release and pull the straps out at all?


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#9 of 10 Old 05-11-2011, 10:32 AM
 
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Quote:

On loosening/tightening, DH loosens the straps (pulls them waaaaaay out) every single time he removes DD from the seat. They are super long and flappy, and then he has to pull them all the way back in. When I only loosen them a tiny bit to get her out, he complains that he can't get her arms in. Apparently he needs gigantic arm holes or he can't do it. eyesroll.gifheadscratch.gif So...are you saying you just unclip your buckle when you take your LO out...that you don't release and pull the straps out at all?
 


No, I don't loosen them at all.  He's 3 and quite tall and gangly, but it's never been too difficult to get him in and out without loosening.  

 

It's not that it's bad to loosen, but then you have to make sure they're properly tightened every time.  It's just simpler for me not to do that.


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#10 of 10 Old 05-11-2011, 11:01 AM
 
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Honestly I had to stop using the Radian rear-facing with DD because of this issue. At the slot it needed to be at for her and her weight it would not tighten all the way down.  It would on the bottom slot, but not the second from bottom.  I checked it at one point and it was all the way at the tightest it could possibly go as well, so I just gave up and figure when she gains some weight or when DS is big enough we'll put her or him in it, until then DD is back in her old Marathon.


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