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  1. #1
    Member lilmama2dsndd's Avatar
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    Recline Angle for toddlers *UPDATED in #10*

    Ok, yet another long rambling question

    DD has a marathon and still rides RFing. When I posted pictures on another forum a bunch of people said the recline angle was wrong, that she shouldn't be reclined as far. She was reclined to 45 degrees and the marathon was braced against the front seatback.

    DD is 28 months, 30 lbs and 36 inches tall, her seated torso height is 13 inches floor to shoulder top.

    I was checking the manual and it says for RFing the Marathon needs to be in the fully reclined position, a CSR w/Britax also told me the same thing, that you were not supposed to use the seat in the upright position RFing, that it was for FFing children over 33 lbs (same thing the manual say). So how am I supposed to get her at less of a reclined angle if the seat has to be in the fully reclined position?

    The seat the marathon is in is a captain's chair, and I put the seatback of the captains chair reclined back to give her some more leg room as when she crosses her legs she complains it "burns" and putting that seatback reclined allows her to stretch her legs out.

    LOL, any of you live near Arlington, TX? I am having some serious carseat issues. I so wish we had the money for a newer minivan for me.

    *****UPDATED IN POST #10 W/DIFFERENT CARSEAT*****
    Last edited by lilmama2dsndd; 01-18-2008 at 02:23 PM.

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  3. #2
    CPS Technician
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    She can be reclined as much as 45 degrees. As a RFing toddler she can be upright as much as 30 degrees. Your vehicle seat will have a lot to do with what angle you get. If she's just reclined 45 degrees, that's an acceptable angle. Can you post the pics here so we can see them? And what vehicle is this in?
    Kim (CPST)

    DS 4years harnessed in Graco Nautilus
    DD 28 months 29 lbs RF in Britax Blvd

  4. #3
    Member lilmama2dsndd's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    The only picture I have is pretty up close, I don't have a further back one and can't get one right now as the Marathon is out of the van and being sent back to Britax because the recline handle does not lock (the recline slides freely between upright & reclined).

    Here is the one I have, the seat she is in has the back almost fully reclined to give her more leg room:

  5. #4
    Car-Seat.Org Zealot skaterbabs's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    The seat must be in recline "mode" while rear facing, but doesn't necessarily be reclined as much as the VEHICLE seat will allow. Does that help any?
    Rebekah Branch, CPST from May 2005 until June 2011
    Mom to CJ (7/96, seatbelt), Gregory (4/98, seatbelt), & Joyjoy (10/03, misc. booster seats)
    "That which you create in beauty and goodness and truth lives on."
    - Denis Waitley

  6. #5
    Member lilmama2dsndd's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Quote Originally Posted by skaterbabscpst View Post
    The seat must be in recline "mode" while rear facing, but doesn't necessarily be reclined as much as the VEHICLE seat will allow. Does that help any?
    Kind of, but is it "wrong" to have it at the 45 degree recline if I brace it against the front seatback? She prefers the 45* recline as she sleeps in the car often and her head doesn't fall forward, and there is no putting rolled towels beside her head to prevent it from falling as she throws them.
    Me
    DS (2/25/04) Britax Regent
    DD (8/24/05) Britax Marathon
    DSD (8/15/05) Graco My Ride 65

  7. #6
    CPS Technician tiggercat's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    From that picture, I would say the seat is over reclined (in other words, reclined past 45 degrees). It would help if you could take a photo from the side rather than from above.

    A toddler can be reclined anywhere from 30 degrees to 45 degrees from vertical. You can achieve a more upright installation by pulling the base away from the seat bight (or seat crack for lack of a better term) and then pushing down on the "foot" area of the carseat while tightening your seatbelt or LATCh straps. Also, if you are using the RF tether, it just have to be tightened to get the slack out, it doesn't need to be piano string taunt.

    For example, here is a picture of my daughter at a good toddler recline. I believe that's around 40 degrees from vertical.



    (this one is at approximately the same angle, but from a different vantage point.
    Natalie, CRST-I, mum of Greg (15), Megan (10), Benjamin and Samuel (6).


  8. #7
    CPS Advocate lovinwaves's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Quote Originally Posted by lilmama2dsndd View Post
    She prefers the 45* recline as she sleeps in the car often and her head doesn't fall forward, and there is no putting rolled towels beside her head to prevent it from falling as she throws them.
    Even at 35-40 degrees I doubt her head would fall forward. Can totally depend on the child, but my children's heads never fall forward even when their seat is very upright.
    Melissa
    Peyton 10
    Camden 9
    And a new baby on the way

  9. #8
    CPS Technician crunchierthanthou's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    It's hard to tell for sure from that angle, but it looks over reclined to me- possibly even more than 45 degrees. It's not unsafe to be at 45 degrees, but is actually safer to be more upright. The more of the shell directly behind the child, the better as it will absorb more of the crash forces.

    Interesting that the recline mechanism is broken. That's usually a function of over tightening the rf tether to adjust the angle. That can cause the base to get stuck in recline mode. Depending on if they replace rather than repair it, it can also pull out the rip stitching of the energy abosrbing tether (which is found on newer models). It doesn't have to be so tight that it affects the angle- just so much that there is no slack.

    Quote Originally Posted by lilmama2dsndd View Post
    Here is the one I have, the seat she is in has the back almost fully reclined to give her more leg room
    Do you mean the vehicle seatback is almost full reclined? What does your owner's manual say about that? I believe some only allow it to be reclined one or two clicks when a carseat is installed on it.

  10. #9
    Member lilmama2dsndd's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Quote Originally Posted by crunchierthanthou View Post
    It's hard to tell for sure from that angle, but it looks over reclined to me- possibly even more than 45 degrees. It's not unsafe to be at 45 degrees, but is actually safer to be more upright. The more of the shell directly behind the child, the better as it will absorb more of the crash forces. Interesting that the recline mechanism is broken. That's usually a function of over tightening the rf tether to adjust the angle. That can cause the base to get stuck in recline mode.
    It isn't stuck in recline mode, it moves freely between upright & recline without having the handle pulled.

    Quote Originally Posted by crunchierthanthou View Post
    Do you mean the vehicle seatback is almost full reclined? What does your owner's manual say about that? I believe some only allow it to be reclined one or two clicks when a carseat is installed on it.
    Yes, the vehicle seatback is reclined, I checked the owner's manual and it didn't say anything about how far it should be reclined for a RFing carseat.

    When we measured the recline it was 45* from the floor of the van. If you look at the window, the bottom of it runs parrelle with the floor.

    ETA: the marathon is out of the van at the moment and my mom is bringing the base for our Safety 1st Intera and I am going to put it in my van for her since it goes to a higher RF weight (35lbs). When the base gets here I will install and take pictures w/a good view of the recline angle.

    I will also put the vehicle seatback up more.
    Last edited by lilmama2dsndd; 01-18-2008 at 12:20 PM.
    Me
    DS (2/25/04) Britax Regent
    DD (8/24/05) Britax Marathon
    DSD (8/15/05) Graco My Ride 65

  11. #10
    Member lilmama2dsndd's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    ok, got the base to the Safety 1st Intera and I have it installed using the L&S belt. It does not budge at all, then I tethered the top tether using a D-ring to the chair leg of the driver's seat. This seat was actually easier to get in than the Marathon is.

    How does this recline angle look for DD (28mo, 30lbs, 36in)?:
    Me
    DS (2/25/04) Britax Regent
    DD (8/24/05) Britax Marathon
    DSD (8/15/05) Graco My Ride 65

  12. #11
    Senior Community Member jessclear's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    lilmama2dsndd,
    I used to live in Arlington, until last June. I'm now in Ohio. i was part of a nursing mothers group called For Babies Sake. Have you heard of it? If not, I can give you the information. They meet every Tuesday night in South Arlington off of Cooper. Anyway, I saw your nursing siggy and thought you might be interested. Most of the moms in the group ERF as well. They could help you out in person. Let me know.
    Hannah Rose - 6yo - 47 pounds - 45' - Livia FR 85
    Turbo Booster, Jane Indy Plus with dad; Evenflo Symphany and Turbo with Gma;
    Peg Perego Primo Viaggio for 3.5yo Niece and borrowed children

    Eva Genelle forever in our hearts


  13. #12
    Member lilmama2dsndd's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Quote Originally Posted by jessclear View Post
    lilmama2dsndd,
    I used to live in Arlington, until last June. I'm now in Ohio. i was part of a nursing mothers group called For Babies Sake. Have you heard of it? If not, I can give you the information. They meet every Tuesday night in South Arlington off of Cooper. Anyway, I saw your nursing siggy and thought you might be interested. Most of the moms in the group ERF as well. They could help you out in person. Let me know.

    I have heard of them, but my two are older (2.5 yrs & 4 yrs) so they don't do well around groups of smaller babies, they tend to get too excited and forget to slow down. We have to have groups with other just as energetic toddlers/preschoolers with plenty of running space, lol.
    Me
    DS (2/25/04) Britax Regent
    DD (8/24/05) Britax Marathon
    DSD (8/15/05) Graco My Ride 65

  14. #13
    CPS Technician tiggercat's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Quote Originally Posted by lilmama2dsndd View Post
    ok, got the base to the Safety 1st Intera and I have it installed using the L&S belt. It does not budge at all, then I tethered the top tether using a D-ring to the chair leg of the driver's seat. This seat was actually easier to get in than the Marathon is.
    The recline angle looks fine there, definitely appropriately reclined for a toddler. You could probably even recline it a touch more if you wanted.
    HOWEVER you MUST remove the D-ring and untether that seat. Rearfacing tethering is only allowed on Britax and Sunshine Kids seats, Dorel (a.k.a. Safety 1st) does NOT allow rearfacing tethering. Either they didn't test it, or it did not pass testing with the RF tether.
    Natalie, CRST-I, mum of Greg (15), Megan (10), Benjamin and Samuel (6).


  15. #14
    Member lilmama2dsndd's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Quote Originally Posted by tiggercat View Post
    The recline angle looks fine there, definitely appropriately reclined for a toddler. You could probably even recline it a touch more if you wanted.
    HOWEVER you MUST remove the D-ring and untether that seat. Rearfacing tethering is only allowed on Britax and Sunshine Kids seats, Dorel (a.k.a. Safety 1st) does NOT allow rearfacing tethering. Either they didn't test it, or it did not pass testing with the RF tether.

    What about the costco scenario? We have it tethered RFing in DH's truck, I am guessing I will need to untether it too?
    Me
    DS (2/25/04) Britax Regent
    DD (8/24/05) Britax Marathon
    DSD (8/15/05) Graco My Ride 65

  16. #15
    CPS Technician tiggercat's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Quote Originally Posted by lilmama2dsndd View Post
    What about the costco scenario? We have it tethered RFing in DH's truck, I am guessing I will need to untether it too?
    The Cosco Scenera? It does not allow RF tethering either.
    Natalie, CRST-I, mum of Greg (15), Megan (10), Benjamin and Samuel (6).


  17. #16
    CPS Technician Suzibeck's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Quote Originally Posted by lilmama2dsndd View Post
    What about the costco scenario? We have it tethered RFing in DH's truck, I am guessing I will need to untether it too?

    Yep, no rf tether for any seat other than Britax and Sunshine Kids.
    Mom to three big girls in adult seat belts (20, 17, and 14) and one booster rider (8) in a Kia Sedona and a VW Tiguan.

  18. #17
    Member lilmama2dsndd's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Quote Originally Posted by Susan in MI View Post
    Yep, no rf tether for any seat other than Britax and Sunshine Kids.

    Alrighty then, I just untethered the Safety 1st and stored the tether so it can't fly in an accident. I will untether the costco when DH gets home from work.
    Me
    DS (2/25/04) Britax Regent
    DD (8/24/05) Britax Marathon
    DSD (8/15/05) Graco My Ride 65

  19. #18
    CPST Instructor
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Amanda,

    Try loosing the top tether on the MA. It looks to be pull pretty tight which will pull the seatback down giving it more of an recline. The top tether just needs to be taught but not super tight. I am north of Dallas in Plano and I run a Safe Kids fitting station here. If you don't mind driving to Plano you can come work with our techs. All of us are very experianced in Britax seats. PM me and I will be glad to help you out.

    Also here is a picture of my youngest at 30mths roughly 30-31lbs & roughly 35-36". The recline was roughly around 35 degrees and as you can see no issues with her head following foward as she slept.
    Jenny
    Senior CPS Tech-Instructor & Mommy of 2 girls
    K1 12 yrs old- 61" & 100lbs in vehicle seat belt
    K2 10 yrs old- 59" & 92lbs in vehicle seat belt

  20. #19
    CPS Fanatic CandCfam's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Quote Originally Posted by lilmama2dsndd View Post
    It isn't stuck in recline mode, it moves freely between upright & recline without having the handle pulled.
    If that is the case, then the recline mechanism is broken and you should not use the seat until you can have it repaired by Britax.

  21. #20
    CPS Technician crunchierthanthou's Avatar
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    Re: Marathon Recline Angle for toddlers

    Quote Originally Posted by CandCfam View Post
    If that is the case, then the recline mechanism is broken and you should not use the seat until you can have it repaired by Britax.
    She said that it's being sent back.

    Quote Originally Posted by lilmama2dsndd View Post
    The only picture I have is pretty up close, I don't have a further back one and can't get one right now as the Marathon is out of the van and being sent back to Britax because the recline handle does not lock (the recline slides freely between upright & reclined).

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