coming to terms with child no longer in 5 pt harness - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 15 Old 02-29-2012, 05:50 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have an older child who I turned ff at 12 months ect because I didn't know better at the time. I then had a friend loose a child in an accident. They were restrained to the law but flew out of the belt so now I am much more aware of car seat safety. I have DD who will be 4 in June rfing and DS who was 5 in Sep ff but he only has about 1/2 inch of strap height to go before he has outgrown his seat. I know the logical next step is a TBB and I think he will sit in it correctly but he will sleep in the car at times. We live in a small town (like 500 people small) so walk most places and I run errands while he is at school so he only goes on highways a handful of times a month. 

 

So how do you get over the feeling that they are less safe when I know the data- if they are big enough and will sit correctly a 5pt harness is no more safe than a properly fitting booster. 

 

Also at this rate DD2 could stay rfing till 5 no joke she is tiny. So when It is not me forced to turn her what age is a good one. I was thinking 4yrs but now that that is so close I keep saying maybe 4 1/2 lol. She doesn't mind rfing but .....

 

Thanks guys.


~Katie~ married to J, mom to DD- A 13 yrs ,DS- L 7yrs , and my little nursling DD2- R 5yrs.

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#2 of 15 Old 02-29-2012, 08:04 AM
 
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#3 of 15 Old 02-29-2012, 10:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the reply. I have looked into other seats but he has the true fit and so we would gain less than an inch getting the nautilus and can not afford the Britax combination seat. There are no others on the market as far as I know with shoulder straps over 18 inches besides those are there?


~Katie~ married to J, mom to DD- A 13 yrs ,DS- L 7yrs , and my little nursling DD2- R 5yrs.

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#4 of 15 Old 02-29-2012, 10:22 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChitownTracy View Post

I moved my kids to a combo harness/booster seat instead of straight to a booster.  My kids are tiny & not showing signs of booster ready. If you are not comfortable with it, then move them to a combo seat.  I hear there are combos seats for all budgets.  (personally I'm don't have enough knowledge to recommend or even know the other names of seats available.)

 

Now the NHTSA just announced they have added a "10 year old crash test dummy" On another car seat board that I chat on, there was some speculation wondering if they will now crash test extended harnessing vs booster. 

 


Is there a seat that harnesses till 10 to compare to a booster?

I also have a truefit and plan to go straight to booster when the tf is outgrown.
My other seat is a scenera and I plan on using a harness/booster seat when the scenera is outgrown.

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#5 of 15 Old 02-29-2012, 10:43 AM
 
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I don't know for certain, but I believe the Evenflo Maestro may be a good choice. It is significantly cheaper than the Nautilus and the Frontier. It's been a while since I looked, though, and things change quickly, but you may want to check it out. I hope you can find a solution!

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#6 of 15 Old 02-29-2012, 12:01 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chel View Post


Is there a seat that harnesses till 10 to compare to a booster?
I also have a truefit and plan to go straight to booster when the tf is outgrown.
My other seat is a scenera and I plan on using a harness/booster seat when the scenera is outgrown.


The dummy is pretty small for a 10yo -- I think it's 130cm.  I'm pretty sure it would fit in the Frontier85 at least, and possibly the Nautilus as well.


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#7 of 15 Old 02-29-2012, 12:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by chickabiddy View Post



The dummy is pretty small for a 10yo -- I think it's 130cm.  I'm pretty sure it would fit in the Frontier85 at least, and possibly the Nautilus as well.



I am confused what are you guys talking about? lol


~Katie~ married to J, mom to DD- A 13 yrs ,DS- L 7yrs , and my little nursling DD2- R 5yrs.

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#8 of 15 Old 02-29-2012, 12:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by earthgirl View Post

I don't know for certain, but I believe the Evenflo Maestro may be a good choice. It is significantly cheaper than the Nautilus and the Frontier. It's been a while since I looked, though, and things change quickly, but you may want to check it out. I hope you can find a solution!



Thanks I will look into that seat.


~Katie~ married to J, mom to DD- A 13 yrs ,DS- L 7yrs , and my little nursling DD2- R 5yrs.

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#9 of 15 Old 02-29-2012, 01:20 PM
 
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It is hard coming to terms with it and there's really no easy way to.  I think my boys were almost 8 when I finally put them in boosters (they were previously in a Britax Regent) and my 5.5yo dd is still rearfacing in a True Fit (although she was forward facing for a couple of months this winter when her winter wear got her close to the weight limit).  I always hate the ff'ing and the booster transitions; the kids look so vulnerable!  I guess eventually I get used to it; I just have to keep reminding myself that they are big enough and old enough, and that they had a pretty good run compared to a lot of little kids.

 

As for your dd, if you want to keep her rf'ing, there's no reason for her to be ff'ing unless she's outgrown her seat by weight or height.  My dd loves rf'ing and was happy to turn back after she no longer needed her winter gear.


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#10 of 15 Old 02-29-2012, 04:25 PM
 
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Of course all kids grow at their own rate, and it's impossible to predict exactly how your son will grow.  But, a good rule of thumb is that kids gain about an inch of torso growth per year.  A half-inch of room to grow in his current seat might get him close to his sixth birthday.  When that time is approaching, you can decide if you still believe he needs a 5-point harness.  Aside from the Frontier, the Maestro, Nautilus, and ProSport have the tallest harnesses.  The top harness height is about 18" on the Maestro and 18-18.5" on the Nautilus.  The Recaro ProSport has about 18.5", but is just as pricey as the Frontier.  Here's a link: https://sites.google.com/site/carseatmeasurements/

 

Kids can be taught how to sleep properly in a booster, if you think he will drift off now and then.  As long as he stays upright (not leaning out of position) he would be safe.  Perhaps you could invest in a reasonably priced booster like the Graco Turbobooster to start helping him get used to how to sit for short trips, keeping his True Fit for longer trips while he still fits in it.  

 

I don't know what your budget is, but if you have a little time before you need to buy a seat, you could stalk the internet for a deal on a Frontier.  You can often find them for about $200 if you're patient.  If your son is ok with pink, it's $202 now with free shipping on Amazon.  If there is ever an amazing deal, chances are that someone will post about it here: http://www.car-seat.org/forumdisplay.php?f=23

 

Good luck! 


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#11 of 15 Old 03-01-2012, 12:16 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie T View Post

Thanks for the reply. I have looked into other seats but he has the true fit and so we would gain less than an inch getting the nautilus and can not afford the Britax combination seat. There are no others on the market as far as I know with shoulder straps over 18 inches besides those are there?


According to this the Nautilus does vary based on model, so you might want to try them out when you get closer:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AvfUm4x64h3AdHpYd2k4RlQ1TnhUSGx4VEZaY09KUXc&hl=en#gid=0

As a PP mentioned, average torso growth is only about an inch a year, so you might end up being able to keep your 5 year old harnessed for longer than you thought (since you'll need to buy a booster anyway, the Nautilus could be used until outgrown harnessed, then used as a booster and then passed to your younger child for use since you think she will be harnessed in her current seat, or the Tru Fit, for quite some time longer).

 

It IS hard to let go of that bit of control.  It *feels* much safer and I know I like to do what I can. 


 

Quote:

Originally Posted by Katie T View Post



I am confused what are you guys talking about? lol



For crash testing purposes, they use various sizes of dummies.  The organization has recently started testing using a dummy that is supposed to represent an average 10 year old (though, if the above poster is correct and the dummy is 130 cm, it is actually under the 25th %)


 

 

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#12 of 15 Old 03-01-2012, 12:44 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by earthgirl View Post

I don't know for certain, but I believe the Evenflo Maestro may be a good choice. It is significantly cheaper than the Nautilus and the Frontier. It's been a while since I looked, though, and things change quickly, but you may want to check it out. I hope you can find a solution!



The Maestro is listed as having a top harness height of 18" on the link provided above.  You never know (with rounding, lol) if it might make a difference, though!  And you will need a booster anyway.

 


 

 

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#13 of 15 Old 03-02-2012, 07:48 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chel View Post


Is there a seat that harnesses till 10 to compare to a booster?


At 9 1/2 my daughter is still harnessed in a nautilus and I have no reason to believe she will outgrow it before September when she turns 10 (her 7, 8 this month, year old brother outgrew his about a year ago though).  So, for some 10 year olds, yes.  There are also special needs car seats that would definitely keep a 10 year old harnessed for the purpose of crash tests.


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#14 of 15 Old 03-03-2012, 03:10 PM
 
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The vast majority of ten year olds won't fit in a harnessed seat, at least a commercially available one, and for neuro-typical 10 year olds there is no safety advantage to remaining in a harness.

Once a child is able to sit still for every ride, and meets height and weight recommendations, for most kids, by 5 or 6, a booster is perfectly reasonable and SAFE choice.

My daughter is 8, and far beyond worrying about harnessing, I wish her friends would just use booster seats. It breaks my heart to see these bitty kids, whose parents chuck their booster the moment they turn 8. (Our state has a 8 years old or 4'9" which ever comes first booster law).

Now, OP, I have a just turned 5 year old. We have chosen to keep him harnessed in my car. We have a Recaro ProSport, which I love, and actually won in a contest. So the price was right! Our longer drives, to visit family, etc. are in my van. He often sleeps, and he is very wiggly after about 20 mins. However, since about 4 1/2, he has been boostered in his Dad's car and Grandma's car. They never drive him more than about 5 miles, maximum. He fits the booster well, and knows to leave the belts alone and hold still. For us, it was logistics, as we needed to fit three across, and purchasing four Radians- one each for DD and DS- in two cars (Dad's/Grandma's) was not financially possible. Consequently, DS moved to a booster sooner than I would have liked, however, he does fine.

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#15 of 15 Old 03-04-2012, 10:15 AM
 
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My daughter will be ten next week.  She just had a physical, so I know she's 54.5" and 82.9# in her socks.   This puts her at the 51%ile for height, so just about exactly average.  And she tends towards legginess, so her torso might be slightly shorter than average.  She just barely fits in a Frontier85 by height and would probably exceed the weight limit if she put shoes on and ate dinner.

 

She's been in a booster for almost three years and a backless for about eight months.  I'm comfortable that she's very, very safe.


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