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Monthly Archive:: August 2013

Review of the Britax Pioneer 70: A Pioneering New Seat?

Fri, Jan 18, 2013 8:54:51 AMThe car seat world has been abuzz over Britax’s trio of new combination seats. CarseatBlog has already reviewed the Frontier 90 and Pinnacle 90, and now it’s time to meet their cousin, the Britax Pioneer 70 Combination Carseat.

First thing’s first:

  • Age minimum, harness: 2 years
  • Harness limits: 25-70 lbs, 30-54″
  • Booster limits: 40-110 lbs, 45-59″
  • Lowest harness height: 12″
  • Highest harness height: 18.5″
  • Highest booster setting: 21″
  • Highest shell height: 29″
  • Crotch strap positions: 6″ and 8″

If you were passing the Pioneer on the street, you could easily mistake it for a Frontier 90 or a Pinnacle, but there are some significant differences. Britax created the Pioneer to be a more affordable option, and that means the seat doesn’t come with all of the features of the more expensive two.

Here’s a chart comparing all three seats:

 

Pioneer 70

Frontier 90

Pinnacle 90

Height range: harness

30-54”

30-58”

30-58”

Height range: booster

45-59”

45-62”

45-62”

Weight range: harness

25-70 lbs

25-90 lbs

25-90 lbs

Weight range: booster

40-110 lbs

40-120 lbs

40-120 lbs

Age minimum

2

2

2

Top harness height

18.5”

20.5”

20.5”

Top booster height

21”

23”

23”

No-rethread harness

YES

YES

YES

Front-adjust recline

YES

YES

YES

Safe Cell base

YES

YES

YES

Steel reinforced shell

YES

YES

YES

ClickTight system

NO

YES

YES

HUGS

NO

YES

YES

Side Impact Cushions

NO

NO

YES

 

So how does the Pioneer differ? First, the maximum harness height is lower on the Pioneer than on the Pinnacle and Frontier 90. The other two top out at a best-in-class 20.5″, while the Pioneer comes in at 18.5″. That’s still a nice, tall seat—just not as tall as the others in Britax’s line.

New Sponsor Giveaway: Welcome Clek!

Welcome, Clek, Inc, as a sponsor of CarseatBlog.  Please visit their great website to check out the Foonf convertible carseat and the acclaimed Oobr, Ozzi and Olli boosters.  Then, be sure to enter our giveaway for one (1) Olli LATCHable backless booster to a random winner, sponsored by Clek.  No numb-bums for kids using the very comfortable Olli!  It’s rated for ages 4 and up who weigh 40-120 lbs and are 40-57 inches tall.  It includes a great rigid LATCH system for easy attachment to the anchors in most newer cars.  It’s a great backless booster and it’s on our Recommended Carseats list, too!  Winner may choose from the fabrics Tadpole, Raspberry, Storm and Jet only.

tadpoleraspberrystormjet

To enter, please follow the Rafflecopter instructions and then you MUST leave a comment in reply to this blog to be eligible to win the prize!  You can earn extra entries if you also Like the CarseatBlog facebook page, Like the Clek facebook page, Like the Car-Seat.Org facebook page,  for leaving a reply at the Car-Seat.Org giveaway thread, for a tweet and for each time you refer a friend (up to 10) with your own custom link.  That’s a lot of possible entries for this great backless booster!  Contest closes on or around 10PM Eastern time on August 19th, 2013.  Please be sure to follow the Rafflecopter instructions using the entry widget below for how to get extra entries and for your custom refer-a-friend URL.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Cute vs. Scary

 Seatbelts are designed for the average-sized adult male, not for little kids.

photo

Please feel free to Like/Share for social media!

ZZZzzzzzzzzzzz

I have a problem. I am a problem sleeper. Not in the traditional sense, though I am considered a night owl by a lot of folks, including zzzzzzzmy early bird husband who would be happy to call it a night at 8:30 pm every night. Hey, my night is just starting at 10 pm when everyone goes to sleep—it’s quiet and the dog and I are all alone. Pure bliss. No, my problem is that I fall instantly asleep on any mode of transportation where I’m not actively in charge of its function.

Life hasn’t always been this way; in fact, I remember a couple of very long 13-hour trans-Pacific flights to and from New Zealand where I couldn’t sleep. No, it’s a recent phenomenon that’s slowly been creeping up on me over the last few years. Perhaps it’s a sign of aging; the elderly do tend to sleep a lot in moving vehicles. I remember my grandmother’s mouth hanging open as we would make multi-state drives to visit my uncles and their families, with Lionel Richie and Chicago tapes playing in the background.

The problem for me is, like my grandmother, my mouth hangs open, and my head tends to bob. This is rather comical because as my head bobs, I scare myself awake. Yes, I can admit this because it is rather funny and I’m not above making fun of myself. It’s only a matter of time before I’ll be walking through the grocery store farting out loud and not caring. Just wait!

I recently took my kids with me to Washington, DC, for the Safe Kids Conference. My coalition director has wanted me to go for years and my kids are finally old enough to handle themselves alone for conference sessions (and they even attended one with me on pedestrian safety!). I was asleep on the plane before we were out of our airport’s airspace. They thought it was funny—even took pictures of me, little buggers. I had a good excuse though: we had to be up at 3:30 am to get ready to leave for the airport to catch our leaving-at-the-butt-crack-of-dawn flight. I had no excuse for the return flight, however. Yep, out like a light as soon as we were in the air. I do remember hearing the captain coming on the loudspeaker to say, “Flight attendants—sit down!” My drowsy response to my kids was, “Hold on to the iPads,” then I promptly went back to sleep.

I used to enjoy being a passenger to catch up on magazine reading and blog work or other computer work. I can’t even imagine reading a book now since I can’t get through a magazine article. A chapter of a book? Fuhgeddaboutit. So share with me—I can’t be the only one for whom a moving vehicle is better than Ambien. Do you snort yourself awake in public places? Does your family make fun of you because you can get comfortable nearly anywhere, or at least comfortable enough to nod off? We must unite! But after our naps, please!

Chicco NextFit Review Followup

Chicco NextFit -GeminiI’m here to do a follow-up review of the Chicco NextFit Convertible Carseat. If you haven’t already, check out Kecia’s previous review of the Chicco NextFit for measurements, installation, etc!

I purchased this seat about 3 months ago to rear-face Liam in my husband’s 2001 Toyota 4Runner. Liam has an insanely long torso, and has outgrown most seats rear-facing. He just turned 3 years old in July, and is 34lbs and about 39 inches tall (give or take…good luck wrangling him to get a spot on measurement).

My first impression right out of the box was that it was a very nicely built seat. Everything was very well thought out, from storage compartments to placement of the LATCH straps. Installation was a breeze, in both the sloped seat of the 4Runner and the flat seat of my 2005 Honda CR-V. Front to back space is about average; not quite as compact as the Britax seats but definitely not requiring as much space as the Radian.

The cover is very nice and has not snagged or pilled in the 3 months we have had it with almost daily usage. Liam climbs in and out of it himself and puts his shoes all over it (velcro!) without any issues. The chest clip and buckle are very easy to use and the harness adjuster is seamless and easy to tighten and loosen.