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Part 12: Chopping the Top I
1950bulletnose


A major problem to overcome in chopping the Studebaker roof is the curved rear glass. Because the rear glass is tempered it cannot be cut, therefore the rear window opening has to remain stock size. To accomplish the task of chopping the roof, the rear window frame will be cut from the roof and body along the yellow line I've drawn. Spot welds inside the rain gutters of the trunk opening will need to be drilled first and popped before cutting the window frame loose.

1950 Studebaker Champion Project


The rear window frame was removed from the roof.

1950 Studebaker Champion Project

1950 Studebaker Champion Project


Next, 6 inches was measured up from the bottom of the windshield posts and marked. A mark then was measured 3 inches below the 6" line and taped between the lines. There should be 3 inches of untaped post still left below that. The door posts and quarter window posts were measured 3 inches up from the body line and marked, fill between the 3" line to the body with tape. All the posts were then cut along the top edge of the tape and the roof was freed.

1950 Studebaker Champion Project

1950 Studebaker Champion Project


With the help of some friends the roof was lifted off the body and placed on the floor.

1950 Studebaker Champion Project


Yikes, it's a convertible.

1950 Studebaker Champion Project

1950 Studebaker Champion Project


Here's where I crossed my fingers to find out whether my calculations were right or wrong. Will I end up with a steel-roofed Studebaker or will I be building a fiberglass Carson top?

1950 Studebaker Champion Project

1950 Studebaker Champion Project

The roof is placed on the body for a trial fit. ALRIGHT...the roof moved forward at the rear deck as I suspected and the B pillars will be cut and repositioned to line up with the door jamb. All in all the chop went well. A steel roofed resto-rod she'll be!


Click here for Part 13: Chopping the Top II


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