View Full Version : Reskinning Steel Hardtop Interior for Winter

Jim Lee
12-17-2004, 07:29 PM
Hi all. It's getting to be that time of the year that
I swear that I am going to get the hardtop out of storage and on the TR where it should be when it is not shirt sleeve, top and windscreen off weather.

I'm about to embark on relining a 1959 TR3A steel hardtop and would like to do it with the goal being warmth, as warm as sidescreens allow, and quietness as oppossed to originality. I'm in North Carolina so it won't be on for too long I can assure you of that.
Right now I have a layer of that shiny insulation type stuff that most people use on car floors under the carpet. I'm thinking of just putting layers of that on and then finally a decent light colored piece of fabric over that for aesthetics.

I guess my main questions would be about how anyone else who has restored these or similiar interior parts has found to be the best way to secure everything so it isn't a constant battle against gravity and centrifugal force keeping this stuff up there.

Thanks very much,
Jim Lee

1959 TR3A TS50550
1963 Thunderbird Convertible

12-17-2004, 09:21 PM
Way back when I had an International scout with a steel top. I used contact cement (a gallon and a paint brush) to glue closed cell foam one of my navy buddies got from sub base Pearl. It was beige in color and about an inch thick. Worked very well keeping the noise down and seemed to insulate well in cold or hot weather.

12-18-2004, 11:30 AM
Contact cement works great.
Did the same thing to my Mini's gutted interior/inner roof a couple of years ago. I'm not sure how flexible or 'stretchy' your shiny insulation stuff is, but the most important thing, obviously, is to get the insulation on evenly with no creses or wrinkles. Might require a bit of cutting and fitting. When it comes to fabric to cover it all with, I found a really stretchy kind of vinyl and it turned out perfect. The 'stretchiness' it vital, as it will eliminate lots of unsightly folds and creases.
As for the contact cement, don't be in a hurry.
Too dry, and it can be 'revived' with a bit more cement, too 'wet', and it won't stick properly, coming loose in time. Should feel dry to the touch before mating the two surfaces. Be meticulous, you only get one shot at getting it right. Good luck and hope it turns out well. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/hammer.gif