Convertible Top Question

Jackie

New Member
I have a 1966 Red Amphicar.
My white top is in excellent condition!
The problem is, ~ the top will not latch on the
passenger side...it just does not seem to quite
make the stretch to get there.
Since I know very little about these cute little cars,
could that problem possibly be in the mechanism ?
I have been given a few suggestions, ie: let the
top warm up a bit before trying to get it to latch.
Well...that does not work !
Any clues out there on what the problem
possibly could be ?
Thanks a lot ~ Jackie ~ Fairport, NY
PS ~ My car will probably be for sale
in spring or summer of 2009.
Excellent condition ~ NO RUST anyplace !! ~
New Clutch and transmission, 3 years ago.
**************New MapQuest Local shows what's happening at your destination. Dining, Movies, Events, News & more. Try it out (http://local.mapquest.com/?ncid=emlcntnew00000002)
 
Here's my experience with trying to latch my Amphicar top: I can't. My husband has to pull it over the top of the glass from the outside & I latch it on the inside. I'd say you need to exercise for arm strength & either pull it on the outside or push it over from the inside. Sometimes we work together & do both. Try to close it with someone helping, that's all I can recommend. Good luck. Ina
----- Original Message -----
From: Jackie
To: ribcab@verizon.net
Sent: Tuesday, October 07, 2008 12:14 PM
Subject: [General Amphicar Discussion-t-20199] Convertible Top Question


I have a 1966 Red Amphicar.
My white top is in excellent condition!
The problem is, ~ the top will not latch on the
passenger side...it just does not seem to quite
make the stretch to get there.
 

CapnJohn

Amphi Guru & Former IAOC President
The problem is probably in the top material. I would guess the top is just too tight on the bows. Another problem could be in the seals along the header (the piece that fits along top of the windshield frame.) If the seals or top materials are incorrect or incorrectly fitted they can be too thick to allow the header to meet with the windshield frame.

On rare occasions, the alignment pin located on the front header of your top frame does not drop into the alignment plate hole completely. Try latching your left one 1st if possible.

NEVER force it. I have seen cracked windshields due to the twisting of the frame when forced. It takes a lot of force to crack it, so don't be too afraid, just cautious.
 

Propcar50

Member
Jackie,
My top on the passenger side also is just out of reach. I warm it up with a blow dryer for a few minutes. Seems to relax it very nicely. Don't leave the dryer too long in one spot though.

Randy
Maryland
-------------- Original message --------------
From: Jackie <>

I have a 1966 Red Amphicar.
My white top is in excellent condition!
The problem is, ~ the top will not latch on the
passenger side...it just does not seem to quite
make the stretch to get there.
Since I know very little about these cute little cars,
could that problem possibly be in the mechanism ?
I have been given a few suggestions, ie: let the
top warm up a bit before trying to get it to latch.
Well...that does not work !
Any clues out there on what the problem
possibly could be ?
Thanks a lot ~ Jackie ~ Fairport, NY
PS ~ My car will probably be for sale
in spring or summer of 2009.
Excellent condition ~ NO RUST anyplace !! ~
New Clutch and transmission, 3 years ago.
**************New MapQuest Local shows what's happening at your destination. Dining, Movies, Events, News & more. Try it out (http://local.mapquest.com/?ncid=emlcntnew00000002)
 

PeterP

Member
So is this a design flaw, an installation error, or is the top just supposed to be snug? I know I have seen a lot of advice in terms of adding some bracing to the top frame, and adjusting it properly when installing it...
 

chasgould

New Member
So is this a design flaw, an installation error, or is the top just supposed to be snug? I know I have seen a lot of advice in terms of adding some bracing to the top frame, and adjusting it properly when installing it...
I find that it is very mportant that the pins line up in the holes before you try to latch anything. I push the header bow on the drivers side forward from outside of the car until the pin lines up, and then latch the drivers side latch first, and that usually pulls the top forward enough to allow me to latch the passenger side latch.
Chas
 
Chas,

Not a design flaw, on my car the top was installed too tight and the slack material was cut off. I have tried to loosen it by removing the 3 trim pieces in the front and moving the holes back, but I do not have enough extra slack in the top material and the original holes start to show if you pull it too far forward.

Mine is better than it was, but the top is shrinking over time so it is a losing battle. Best to install tops on the loose side.
 

jfriese

Active Member
Hello Peter,

Assuming the top frame isn't bent, it's almost certainly an installation error. The secret to top installation is to leave it somewhat loose when installing it, fasten the snaps and latches and then run a clothes steamer around the underside of the material. The top material and straps will shrink to a snug fit that looks good and allows the top to close easily.

Here's another tip for those who didn't know the previous installation tip. To get the pins to drop in, standing outside the car, alongside the windshield, slide your arm under the top material and grab to cross bow above the back of the front seat. Pull this bow forward and the pins should be able to drop in place.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red
 
This is a good tip. Can't wait to try it. Maybe it will help our latching struggle. Ina
----- Original Message -----
From: jfriese
To: ribcab@verizon.net
Sent: Wednesday, October 08, 2008 12:21 PM
Subject: RE: [General Amphicar Discussion-t-20199] Re: Convertible Top Question


Hello Peter,

It's almost certainly an installation error. The secret to top installation is to leave it somewhat loose when installing it, fasten the latches and then run a clothes steamer along the underside of the material. The top material and the straps will shrink to a snug fit that looks good and allows the top to close easily.

Here's another tip for those who didn't know the previous installation tip. To get the pins to drop in, standing outside the car, alongside the windshield, slide your arm under the top material and grab to cross bow above the back of the front seat. Pull this bow forward and the pins should be able to drop in place.

John Friese
67 White
67 Red





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Canadian four amphs

Amphicar Expert
Sometimes you just have to bight the bullet and get a new top.
The Top Gun fabric tops are so easy to put up and down compared to the vynal types, I never cut off the extra material at front incase is needed later,once you know what your doing and get a few short cuts memorized new tops can be put on in about an hour,
Ron trudeau put on one at my swim in in spring and I put one on at Boston swim in Aug parked out beside the motorhome.
BUT I am going to invent a safty to remind me to remove the side zippers before top can come down..
Also at the Boston Swim in A Complete NOS TONNA cover was lent to me and I will soon have them for sale.
Kinda neat, you roll windows up. snap on back, tie to door handle, visors and front mirror and keeps dew out wothout putting top up..
 

SNOWBIRD

Amphicar Expert
It wasn't until I got to my OLD post that I realized this was from 2005!!!!

Had a cover made up but was never really any good, easier to put top up.
now for a quick up I pop up and umbrella. eg going into a store in eve, to keep the dew off.

IMG_2577.JPG
 
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