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removing a vinyl top

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fodoimp
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removing a vinyl top

Postby fodoimp on Mon Oct 09, 2006 2:34 pm

Is removing a vinyl top more work than its worth? What do I have to look out for?
I want to take mine off but Im afraid that I might open up another can of worms.
Is the roof finished under the vinyl top
I have an 86 cutlass
thanks!

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D's350GP
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Postby D's350GP on Mon Oct 09, 2006 3:43 pm

Removing a vinyl top isnt that hard. You need to be ready for the possibility of rust though, depending on where you live. Once you peel of the actual vinyl there is going to be a spongy material under it thats pretty easy to scrape off. The next part is getting all that adhesive crap thats under it off, this can be easy or hard. You can either scrape at it until you get it all, or you can use rubbing alcohol on it, which will take it right off. Above the rear windows you're gonna find a clay like material covering some shitty welds, you're going to need to get rid of that too. Also there are some small studs that are used to hold the trim on, these you will need to cut off(hack saw, recip saw) and grind down smooth. The last thing to do is bondo the areas where you found that clay filler, and it should be hard to tell your car had a vinyl top at all.
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fodoimp
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Postby fodoimp on Mon Oct 09, 2006 3:54 pm

thanks for the info
what about the window trims do they remain the same
or should I find a set from a non vinyl top car
thanks again for the info

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D's350GP
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Postby D's350GP on Tue Oct 10, 2006 1:41 am

They're the same, just make sure not to scratch them up when taking off the padding.
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pontiacgp
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Postby pontiacgp on Tue Oct 10, 2006 7:43 am

I think the winows trims have a rubber seal on them when there is no vinyl top. Also the there are no studs around the back window to secure the clips to install the chrome trim around the back window

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Postby edmck82 on Mon Nov 13, 2006 2:20 am

What do these Landau/carriage tops run? I've seen a few people mention on the other forums that an auto upholstery shop would charge $200-400. The GM parts site claimed that a replacement top runs around $1500 ?

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GP403
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Postby GP403 on Mon Nov 13, 2006 8:28 am

When I had mine done about 2-3 yrs ago it ran ~400 (IIRC) and that was removal/re-install w/ the padded top. (hail!) Unsure where the replacement came from but that $400 was for everything. Was done in a shop in Dubuque IA. hth.

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Postby edmck82 on Mon Nov 13, 2006 6:46 pm

GP403 wrote:When I had mine done about 2-3 yrs ago it ran ~400 (IIRC) and that was removal/re-install w/ the padded top. (hail!) Unsure where the replacement came from but that $400 was for everything. Was done in a shop in Dubuque IA. hth.


Thanks ! Was it an upholstery shop?

betsy84
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Postby betsy84 on Sat Nov 18, 2006 6:36 pm

pontiacgp wrote:I think the winows trims have a rubber seal on them when there is no vinyl top. Also the there are no studs around the back window to secure the clips to install the chrome trim around the back window


Wrong.. all of it. The Brougham windows fit in fine after the top is removed, just put some dum-dum around where the face of the glass mounts to the exterior and refasten windows into place. There will however be holes where the trim pieces from the top attached to the body. There are studs underneath, but the trim is covered in glue, as is the filler panel between back window and trunk lid. Also, where the sheetmetal for the roof meets underneath where the top was, you will need to remove the lead from out of it, and do whatever you want to fill the gap. Anyways. good luck.

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Postby jerrycad472 on Sat Nov 18, 2006 10:41 pm

The side windows from the vinyl car will work, but there will be a gap where the vinyl used to tuck underneath. The Non vinyl top cars had an extra rubber around the outside of the window trim that covered the gap (at least on the Regals, and I think all the G-bodys use the same quarter window). I would find some from a non vinyl top car at the junk yard. You can probably get a set with the glass and all for $20.
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KMac
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Postby KMac on Wed Jan 03, 2007 11:51 pm

I ripped mine off a few hours ago and it came off alright. I will get pics up tomorrow
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Postby KMac on Fri Jan 05, 2007 12:20 am

Here are the pics. After removing the vinyl i had that foam and glue stuff. i used a putty knife to scrape off the large stuff and then used acetone to eat the rest off. It turned out very nice.

Click for a larger pic
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Question...does anyone know if under the large bracket that holds the vinyl on, the one that runs across the top of the roof, does it have studs that it clips to or is it holes that i need to fill in?
Also, does anyone have any advice for what i need to do with the plastic around the back windshield. Thanks
86 Cutlass Supreme-Very minor upgrades to the 307
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http://www.cardomain.com/ride/2294936

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pontiacgp
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Postby pontiacgp on Fri Jan 05, 2007 4:59 pm

They are all studs on the top and sides...can you do me a favor and take a look at around the back window....there are no studs for the nylon clips to hold the chrome molding on is there?

betsy84
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Postby betsy84 on Fri Jan 05, 2007 11:35 pm

The studs that hold the clips on are on the sides not the face, if that makes sense, so it may be hard to see. The top piece is riveted on, you'll have to drill them out. Dont drill all the way, and dont use too much pressure. Also dont worry about the windows, just get black moulding putty, its like sticky tack, I've always called it dumdum, I donno what it really is, and you use that, then reattach the window with the speed nuts (they dont tighten down, once their on and snug, thats a wrap)

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Postby KMac on Sat Jan 06, 2007 12:50 pm

so the top is riveted? How do i go about getting that plastic off in the back?
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http://www.cardomain.com/ride/2294936

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