Sunday, March 30, 2014

A New Top

I thought I would just have the top done by an upholstery shop......VOID. Its either "didn't they use chicken wire in these??" or " I will only do this by installing a metal top in the car and then Landau the new metal. Probably will scratch the paint!"

So here we go........we start with the new structure and new paint, I can do this!

The first step is to block the bow/side rail joints to be sure that no irregularities exist. Then block and trim the bows and related headliner listings.

With all of the information on the net, I will do a 5 layer insert. This is old school, but so am I.

With a paper pattern of the insert (metal edge to metal edge) I taped the car and installed the first layer for sound deadening. This is one layer of "Warm & Natural" cotton quilt batting. This is stapled down with a simple fine line stapler.

The next step requires better paint protection, so I cut the middle (paper pattern) out of a $2.50 soft blanket from the local Thrift Store and taped that over the first tape line.

I really like Nick's paint, and this seemed a little wimpy to a clutz like me. The CEO was absent, so I scrounged around the house for more protection. I snagged a hidden PINK blanket (she will never miss it) and added it and another layer of tape.

Now it seems better protected.

A buddy stopped by while I was taping this one on and said " You're going to get in trouble when she gets home!! But it does look kinda sporty if you like PINK".

Now comes the chicken *#@/)^. I hate this stuff but the old timer Model A guys swear by it. We are nicely padded now (warm and soft too).

Even after rolling it out on the driveway several times and duct taping the sharp ends, it still looked like a potato chip.

Three hours later, it was tight and smooth and retained by nails.

Now comes the air stapler to secure the wire as stretched. Cut and trim to the inside metal edge again.

The third layer in "the plan" is Haartz Cambria convertible top fabric. This is a very nice, tough, non-stretch material I found at the upholstery supply.

Waiting two days for a warm full sun day, I built the stretching frame for the Landau vinyl.
Now the car sits in the sun to heat and relax the material prior to streching and stapling in place. Not much stretch in the Harrtz fabric.

The Landau fabric heated faster the the top fabric, so I stopped and stretched it to the frame while the top was heating. This is the first of probably 3 stretches.

Click on any picture for full view.

Stretching side to side and front to rear, the third layer is fitted to the inside metal edge and stapled in place. Pain in the *@#(^%$  since the stapler is now hitting previous staples and the wire.

All stapled in place and tight as a drum!

Trimmed and untaped.Now waiting for the 1/2" polyester padding from Labaron Bonney and searching for a trim component that I find acceptable.