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Author Topic: Convertible top-frames...  (Read 1241 times)

Herman

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Convertible top-frames...
« on: April 18, 2008, 07:14:18 AM »

... How much do they differ over the years?

Anyone know from first hand knowledge if say, the convertible-frame of an early sixties Chrysler will fit in a late fifties Chrysler?




Steve

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« Reply #1 on: April 18, 2008, 11:16:15 AM »

I doubt it Herman
 
The bodies are wider in the 60's than in the 50's.  You may have to shorten the cross pieces to make it work.  Not going to be an easy task
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Herman

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« Reply #2 on: April 18, 2008, 12:49:23 PM »

"Finding" a late '50s frame is no easy task either I recon, so I'm trying to find out how much difference there would be.
Early 60-cars aren't that much different than the late 50's I think. Only the real C-body's from '65 would be wider.

Steve

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« Reply #3 on: April 18, 2008, 01:36:56 PM »

check out Moores
 
http://www.moparfins.com/Moores/Moores_Auto_Salvage_Tour.htm
 
If you don't see one, contact Marc on their site or PM him  Moores Auto
 
He knows who you are.  He's been a member for quite a while
 
Steve
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Stitcherbob

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« Reply #4 on: April 18, 2008, 07:32:34 PM »

There is a LOT of differences over the model years and style changes. Usually you can get away with cars that fell into the same style like a Newport will fit a 300 and New Yorker. But the Imperials will be different even in the same year. When we chop a top on a hot rod and still want it to fold down, there is a lot to engineer .....how it folds, length of top vs size of available well storage space, tumblehome (difference in width of top above side windows to the width of the tops of the doors - at beltline) So on...and so on
I agree with Steve....a stock top frame from a salvage yard is our first choice.



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chuck lowe

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« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2008, 02:34:32 PM »

             model years is the reason, no matter soft or hard tops------most all glass from retooling years to retooling years is different no matter the make or model and mopar was good at changes , not letting style get stagnet------------------------------later
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firedome

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« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2008, 07:52:33 AM »

I'm pretty sure unit body conv top frames won't interchange with full frame cars - 1959 and older....

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Herman

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« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2008, 08:13:23 AM »

OK, looking back at my own posts, I noticed I never seem to have said that I'm very willing to alter a topframe if needed.  I always "expect" I will have to modify at least something.
That's something I've learned a long time ago when dealing with these fullsize 'non-YearOne' cars.



Steve

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« Reply #8 on: April 25, 2008, 01:57:10 PM »

Ahhhhh  Herman
 
How abotu what the project is?????  Year what to year what??
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Herman

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« Reply #9 on: April 25, 2008, 03:06:38 PM »

The year in question will be '57 Chrysler.
At the moment I'm still gathering some more info about the car, but haven't heard back from the fellow in 4 days now, so I'm not sure anymore he's interested in selling the car.

The whole reason for this post, is I was 'thinking' of doing a convertible 'conversion' on the (2-dr hardtop) car, so I'm just testing the waters a little.
I'm not really sure yet if I capable of doing such a thing, let alone cut the roof of a perfectly good car either.



Stitcherbob

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« Reply #10 on: April 25, 2008, 07:28:21 PM »

If you find a suitable top frame and modify it to fit, then you will need a hand made top....no stock top will work and my fitted tops start at $1,500 just for the top, not any of the installation or removal of old shtuff, bow repairs...etc. A stock top starts at $400 for some and go up from there. Plus, cutting the roof off of even a full frame car is trouble....I once did a top on a 62 Ford Sunliner (406 2X4 bbls...pretty hot car) and when the tight top was latched, the doors hit the quarter panels! I crawled underneath and the only reason the car didn't bend was the X member was still good.....the rest was a perforated mess! A factory convertible that had all the reinforcements, and it was bending just from the new top! Imagine how floppy a standard car with no roof would be .....

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Herman

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« Reply #11 on: April 26, 2008, 12:34:48 AM »

Good info Bob.
Whenever I dive into this 'adventure' I'll think of that.

10 years ago I visited a company in Phoenix, Az who did just the thing, changing hardtop cars into convertibles. Too bad the guy stopped with his company.
Luckily I was able to snap some pics of that 'goldmine' of cool cars there...
















firedome

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« Reply #12 on: May 04, 2008, 04:51:20 AM »

As one of the dedicated FL guys here - PLEASE DO NOT chop the top off
that beautiful '57 Chrysler 2 dr!!!!!!! Why destroy an original work of
art? The coupe has prettier lines than the drop top.  It'd be like
trying to "improve" Starry Night.  Second, a clone convert won't
be worth as much as an original coupe. I used to be totally into the
connies, had '58 NYer (now in Sweden) '57 300C, '62 Polara 500, '56
Olds, '57, '65 Olds convertibles, and many Brit roadsters. 
However I now prefer the coupes, even the MGBGT over the tourer. 
TEHO, but if you get that gorgeous '57- love it as it is!!!  And
I'm glad that idiot is out of business... My 2 cents!



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Herman

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« Reply #13 on: May 05, 2008, 03:56:14 AM »

I don't know the guy who ran that shop. I only know he was Swedish.

About the 'better lines', I think there aren't many hardroof cars that look better than a long fullsize convertible with the top down. I never understand why people always want to 'compare' a hardtop car with a closed top convertible car.
Convertibles with the top closed hardly ever look good, but that why it's called a 'convertible'. You can convert the car into another by lowering the top. 

As for the conversion, like I mentioned earlier, I'm not really sure yet if I would be technically AND mentally capable of doing such
a thing, let alone cut the roof of a perfectly good car either.

But I've kinda blown off the purchase of the car anyway mainly because
the seller is very slow with replying the emails. I'm afraid something might go wrong because of that (earlier experiences with others). He does seem like a good
person though.



firedome

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« Reply #14 on: May 05, 2008, 04:08:19 AM »

Wasn't  that Bo Malefors? He's still around, the last I heard he was buying a 4 dr '59 Des from John Big M Fowlie.  Anyone who cuts tops off cars has much to answer for, imo!!!

Oh, I don't know, at least to me the sleek lines of the hardtop complement and balance the lines of the body
proportions better than the car with the top down. but that's just me... teho... but one thing's for sure - here in Northern NY, and much of the US, unless you live in AZ, CA or FL you can't put the top down very often anyhow!!   :-(
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