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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 12:51 PM Thread Starter
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Vinyl Top question

I think my vinyl roof might be original and is in great shape. Unfortunately, there are a few bumps under the vinyl about 2" back from the windshield trim.

I'm probably dreaming but is it possible to partially peel a vinyl top, do a bit of rust repair and reattached it?
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 01:01 PM
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Bumps = RUST

That's why people hate vinyl tops....not because they look bad...because they don't. It's just that a Vinyl Top is a breeding factory for Moisture and RUST.

It's also the reason that if a car with a vinyl top is restored.....Usually the Vinyl top is not put back on the car.

Unfortunately, On your car, The only thing to do is to completely remove the vinyl top, Repair the rust (cut it out)....and move on with life.....oh yeah, and not put the vinyl top back if you don't want the rust to return.

)

Tony K.
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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 02:25 PM
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The eventual fate of ALL vinyl tops:

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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 03:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Buck View Post
I think my vinyl roof might be original and is in great shape. Unfortunately, there are a few bumps under the vinyl about 2" back from the windshield trim.

I'm probably dreaming but is it possible to partially peel a vinyl top, do a bit of rust repair and reattached it?
If the top is original, it will probably rip when you go to pull it back. New vinyl tops are not expensive to have installed. I would remove the old top myself, sand the rusted areas the best I could and then paint the top with POR using a roller or foam brush. 2 coats should do it. Have a new top put on and you are good to go. You can certainly try to pull back the original top. What have you got to loose? The rust has to be stopped. Use a heat gun to soften the material and glue underneath or set it outside in the sun for an hour.

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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 06:02 PM
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Itís much worse than a few bumps,......

Ex-wife,....."You drove how far for that thing?"
Daughter,..."Theres no inside and it stinks."
Friend,......."Dude, thatís a rusted pile."
Son,.........."This old car is cool."

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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 06:49 PM
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Naww, can't pull it back and replace it. There should be adhesive between the vinyl and the roof from my experience. If it is older, it is probably brittle to boot. I can't see it, but if it really was original, it would be earth-shattering and you owe it to mankind to let us in on the secret! What protectant? I need to get me some of that! Some non-original tops have a batting-like material underneath, further complicating a hoped-for pull-back.

I have little bumps and splits in mine. I know I have rust percolating. I also know that I can buy a new roof for a few hundred bucks. I like my top, it is how the car came originally and makes it period-correct. Good luck with yours, whatever way you go.

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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 07:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NEFaurora View Post
Bumps = RUST

That's why people hate vinyl tops....not because they look bad...because they don't. It's just that a Vinyl Top is a breeding factory for Moisture and RUST.

It's also the reason that if a car with a vinyl top is restored.....Usually the Vinyl top is not put back on the car.

Unfortunately, On your car, The only thing to do is to completely remove the vinyl top, Repair the rust (cut it out)....and move on with life.....oh yeah, and not put the vinyl top back if you don't want the rust to return.

)

Tony K.
It makes absolutely no sense NOT to replace an original vinyl top once the rust is repaired, for a couple reasons:

1. In order to leave the top off, you really need to fill the trim holes and blend the paint work unless you're repainting the entire car.

2. Ford didn't take any rust preventative action under the vinyl tops. Properly repaired and epoxy primed, you're not going to get rust under a replacement vinyl top in your lifetime, unless you flip the car over and plant the roof in your garden.
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 07:24 PM
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Well, Opinions may vary.... but it really all depends on what is done with the car. If the car is left outside or driven constantly in rain.... You bet that rust will come back.....Prepped roof or not...

)

Tony K.



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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 07:30 PM
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There are 65-66 Mustangs that people can actually drive in the rain ??
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 07:45 PM
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Reasons ...Why not to own a Vinyl Top... A real beauty... A shame, It was a fully optioned car too. I almost bought it as a "Parts Car". This is what happens when you let a car with a Vinyl Top sit outside..

Case in point...

Enough said...

Next...
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Tony Kovar
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Getting Ready for the 2020 Melbourne, FL MCA Nationals!

Last edited by NEFaurora; 09-04-2019 at 07:48 PM.
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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 08:02 PM
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On my VT car every bump was a hole.... It's getting a new roof skin.

Scott

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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 08:32 PM
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meh...vinyl tops look fantastic....I would be surprised if an epoxy primed and polyurethane clear coated paint would fail the way the factory ones did...I would risk it.
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 08:34 PM
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You can hide lots of sins with a vinyl top. I had one put on my first 66 restoration because it had such severe hail damage. As much as i tried, I never could get the top completely smooth and ripple-free for paint. I had a hell of a time finding the original stainless trim for it. This was before the internet. Finally got lucky in a junkyard in Arkansas.

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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-04-2019, 11:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodchuck View Post
2. Ford didn't take any rust preventative action under the vinyl tops. Properly repaired and epoxy primed, you're not going to get rust under a replacement vinyl top in your lifetime, unless you flip the car over and plant the roof in your garden.

Having gone through this, I completely agree with Bart. There was basically nothing protecting the metal under the vinyl top once I removed it. My top was also original (removed in the mid 90s) and there was a ton of work to do. I cut pieces that needed to be cut out, welded in some spare metal from a Caddy that I cut up in a junkyard, and got everything flat again. I thought that I was going to paint the top instead of putting another vinyl top on. But then starting thinking: this is the only car I'll ever own with a vinyl top, likely. So instead I sealed it as best I could with some epoxy primer, and put another top on.


Fast forward 20 years while I left my car outside (due to being in my 20s and having other things on my mind) and I needed another vinyl top. Ripped that one off, and was very pleased to see the metal was the same condition I left it in. So I put another vinyl top on it. Thankfully I have a house and a garage now so I hopefully won't have to rip this one off.


I say rip the entire top off and fix the metal problems now. If you want to put another top back on it, make sure you treat the metal extremely well, and it should last.

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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 09-05-2019, 10:11 AM
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Love my vinyl top, but this car hasnt seen rain since 1983.
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