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Old 07-13-2011, 05:36 PM
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Convertible top install

Has anyone out there installed a convertible top? Working on my '68 Camaro convertible top and need some pointers.

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Old 07-13-2011, 09:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SwDreams
Has anyone out there installed a convertible top? Working on my '68 Camaro convertible top and need some pointers.
i just did a 70 gto. wasnt that hard but i had that trim bar out about 10 times adjusting wrinkles. here is some info.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Rpead5UgTY
http://www.upholster.com/auto/convertible-domestic.html
http://restorecarsfast.com/convertibletop/
http://www.carcraft.com/techarticles...top/index.html
http://topgunwon.com/DVD/
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Old 07-14-2011, 06:41 AM
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I have installed a few and have had very good luck when I had the old top to get measurements from. When I have started with the bare top frame then it is a different ballgame, even with the best of instructions. The last top I attempted with out an old top resulted in me finally talking one of the best top installers I have encountered taking the job. It took him at least a dozen attempts to get the rear window surround/rear bow correct. His patience was a result of his years of experience. Smartest thing I ever did talking him out of retirement for one more job!!!

Trees
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Old 07-14-2011, 09:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SwDreams
Has anyone out there installed a convertible top? Working on my '68 Camaro convertible top and need some pointers.
All of the convertible tops from the beginning to almost the mid 2000s are installed the same way, in two pieces with the rear curtain being fitted in first, attached to the rear bow, then removed (zipped out)before the main top is installed. After the main top is in the rear curtain goes back in. If you've never done it before, and don't have the right tools or the correct bow measurement (in your case, it is 22 1/2") to go by it can be a real pain. Let a pro do it.

The top is generally marked from the supplier where the sail panels are supposed to be stapled to the back corner tacking rails, but that is almost never right and needs a couple of adjustments. You need to replace the old cables, and install new pads while replacing the top. The rear curtain goes in first and needs to be adjusted just like the rear corners. Don't buy a poor quality top. Buy the top from the place that makes the tops, not from a middle man. I just installed a top that my customer bought on his own that was of poor quality. He didn't get new cables, the outside pads were generic, not vehicle specific, and there were no rear sail panel pads, I had to make my own. The wire-on was poor quality as was the front seal. Never again.
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Last edited by DanTwoLakes; 07-14-2011 at 09:05 AM.
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Old 07-16-2011, 12:11 PM
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Some questions

Thank for answering my post.

Just a couple of questions if you don't mind.

1. Should the front header and tack strip be glued down? It
appears the old staples were 9/16"; they just went in and bent when they hit the metal. Is that normal for do I need
to change the staple size?

2. One manual suggest using stainless steel staples and tacks. Any idea where I can get these?

Thanks
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Old 07-16-2011, 12:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SwDreams
Thank for answering my post.

Just a couple of questions if you don't mind.

1. Should the front header and tack strip be glued down? It
appears the old staples were 9/16"; they just went in and bent when they hit the metal. Is that normal for do I need
to change the staple size?

2. One manual suggest using stainless steel staples and tacks. Any idea where I can get these?

Thanks
the front doesnt have to be glued. its easier to make adjustments if you dont glue the header. the side flaps are glued.

3/8 is the correct size

depends what stapler you have. i found some at my local menards. you can also find them online.
http://motors.shop.ebay.com/i.html?_...taples&_sacat=
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Old 07-16-2011, 12:25 PM
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It would be unusual for them to have used 9/16" staples. That's the largest size there is and they would be overkill. I would change your staple size to 1/2" or 3/8" whichever doesn't bend. The front header and tack strip can be glued down, but don't have to be.

Stainless staples are a good idea. I get mine from my regular suppliers, but they only sell to upholstery shops. You need to search the internet for the brand of staples your gun uses.
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