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Thread: Rag top.

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    Rag top.

    I got a new top yesterday and of course it comes with no Lift-a-dot or snap connectors installed.
    My plan is to connect the front to the windshield first since that it straight, and then do the back.
    I would start from the center and work my way out. The frame is restored and already on the car.

    Does anyone have any brilliant advice that I haven't thought of?

    Thanks
    Steve

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    Yoda
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    Re: Rag top.

    That sounds about right to me. I went to leather supply store and purchased some punches to knock out the holes plus the big 3 sell a tool that fits those little holes in the snaps. I have put a few on and never had a perfect fit with the side windows; they always seem to wrinkle or wave a little. I have one to put on also, so post how it came out and what you learned.
    steve

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    Darth Vader
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    Re: Rag top.

    I followed the directions in Roger William's book "How to restore Triumph TR2, 3, 3A, 4 and 4A.
    Pages 188 - 191
    He starts at the rear getting the top centered and works out from the center. Alternating LTD fasteners from side to side. Work in the heat so that you can streach the hood more easily.
    Having completed the 12 fasteners across the back move to the front.
    He says to have a helper to stretch the hood as you mark.

    It worked for me.

    David
    TR3A TS75524L

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    Keith

    1957 TR3 TS20447LO (2017-)
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    Re: Rag top.

    I notice in the You tube video he is not doing much stretching of the hood as he marks it. Also starting at the edges of the windshield risks the front being slack when you get to the center.

    David
    TR3A TS75524L

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    Re: Rag top.

    I did the same as you David, start in the center at the back then move to the center at the front as per Roger Williams.

    Graham
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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    Re: Rag top.

    I now mount the top by poking holes in it and just hook the bare holes over the studs. When all looks good, I take it off and install the dots at the holes. This way little is lost if you make a mistake or get a pucker that requires a small adjustment.
    John

    1955 TR2

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    Re: Rag top.

    All good suggestions. What I did was to anchor the front two corners to the windshield using Johns poke the hole method. Then went to rear center and am working my way out. SO far it seems to be working well.
    When I set the straps for the recommended spacing of the sticks, I do not get the recommended 4" above the windshield. More like 2-1/2".
    Decided to finish the top this way and then see if I need to adjust the straps.

    Steve

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    Re: Rag top.

    I do not know about the 4 inches, and I think the ribs finally adjustment can be made later. When I set the ribs up, I open them up and then fully extent them, but leave the last rib floating and never screw the last rib down to the cloth. I pull the ribs into position so the sewing on the top is lined up with the ribs. Then anchor the back straps, when the lines of the top match the ribs and everything looks correct.

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    Re: Rag top.

    I need to check my frame dimensions against that drawing. I Adjusted the frame till it aligned with the seams in the hood.

    I do get a buzzing or rain drop sound from the hood at about 60mph. If I hold the front frame against the hood it stops.

    David
    TR3A TS75524L

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    Re: Rag top.

    I used some draft stopper tape, foam on one side sticky on the other and stuck it to the top of all the hood bows which stoped all the wind chatter.

    Graham
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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    Re: Rag top.

    Quote Originally Posted by sp53 View Post
    I do not know about the 4 inches, and I think the ribs finally adjustment can be made later. When I set the ribs up, I open them up and then fully extent them, but leave the last rib floating and never screw the last rib down to the cloth. I pull the ribs into position so the sewing on the top is lined up with the ribs. Then anchor the back straps, when the lines of the top match the ribs and everything looks correct.
    I agree. I've run across at least two different diagrams of the rib settings, and my final version didn't correspond to either of them.HoodInstall.jpghood sticks.jpg
    Art
    '58 TR3A TS236xxL
    '92 Mazda Miata -- Supercharged
    '07 Mazda RX-8
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    Re: Rag top.

    IMG_20190915_110711946.jpgIMG_20190915_110753293.jpgIMG_20190915_110822034.jpg
    I'm pretty happy with this.
    The final frame dimension were 15-1/4, 7-1/2. The front bow could stand to be tighter. When I push on it the wrinkle over the door goes away.
    This could be because the frame is old and worn. I'm thinking of putting a rubber pad on the linkage where the frame bears.
    Still need to put on 2 lift-a-dots and trim the straps.
    Thanks for all the help and encouragement.
    Steve

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    Re: Rag top.

    Looks great.

    The sun will help tighten it up.

    I am thinking about doing exactly the same thing with the front bow as the linkage on one side has some movement in it. I can not adjust the frame position as it would move it from the seams.
    There must be some differences between the hoods and frames so that the dimensions do not always work out.

    David
    TR3A TS75524L

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    Re: Rag top.

    Top looks like all the ones I have done. I like your seats and white piping. The project I am doing now has the white piping. The white piping sets your car off well plus the deep pattern in the seat looks very original. I have an original back seat with a deeper pattern but my seats and wheel wells do not match. tried to post a picture, but no go.

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    Re: Rag top.

    When I bought this car, the seats, carpets, door panels, vinyl, etc. all came in boxes. Now I just have the side curtains to do.
    I was lucky that the DPO had good taste.

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    Re: Rag top.

    An added tip when punching the holes for the Tenax snaps is to use a slightly smaller hole size than what the Tenax measures. You can force the tenax through for a tighter fit and that will eliminate the hole from stretching out wider than the Tenax snaps when putting the top on later when the top has shrunk or and when it is cold and the top doesn't want to stretch as much as when warm.

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    Yoda
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    Re: Rag top.

    Heck you live California, so maybe you will not the need the side curtains much; it is pouring here. I have an original back seat with a deep pattern but my seats and wheel wells are not as deeply textured and it kinda bothers me, but I used different vendors because I am cheap and the seat should hide most of the side. I am going to glue the wheel wells right to the metal because that is the way I came, I believe; they are not glued yet. Is your texture pattern on your seats as deep as my picture of the back seat?

    I talked to Basil about not being able to post and it looks like my new camera I bought overseas had too many MB. I sized it down but not sure if the vinyl pattern shows will or if the picture is too small.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Re: Rag top.

    Looks like a great start on the interior.
    I was not happy with my wheel well covers becase I did not pad them enough. You can see the edge of the seam through the vinyl. I recommend 1/8" foam rubber.
    My seats are not that deep, nor is my back panel. My feeling is that as long as it is all black, it will look great. You might see the flaws but no one else will.
    That's the problem with doing your own work. Your eye is drawn to every mistake you make. Live with it.

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    Re: Rag top.

    If you use a razor knife to make the 4 slits for the Lift the Dot fasteners do not back it with wood. Use something harder because the point could penetrate too far and make too big a slit. Don't ask how I know.

    David

    Quote Originally Posted by Leatherman View Post
    An added tip when punching the holes for the Tenax snaps is to use a slightly smaller hole size than what the Tenax measures. You can force the tenax through for a tighter fit and that will eliminate the hole from stretching out wider than the Tenax snaps when putting the top on later when the top has shrunk or and when it is cold and the top doesn't want to stretch as much as when warm.
    TR3A TS75524L

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