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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
On my convertible, I had the top unlatched for several months in my garage with the top up. This summer recently I tried to re-latch it, but the latch pins were off by 3/8 to 1/2 inch, not making the latch connection possible. One side missing the latch hole a bit more than the other. Tried leaving the car in the hot sun to make the top pliable but didn’t quite make the stretch. I read about the tack strip. Does anyone have any experience with stretching and or adjusting a top by 1/2 inch? Any help or phone number of a friendly shop or friend I could call would be helpful. Thanks for your time and effort. Jim
 

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I've never tackled a problem like this, I know it's counter intuitive as far as shrinking goes, but I think I would get it wet & then stretch it to fit & leave it fitted while it dries.
 

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Leaving it in the sun is a good step.
Throwing water on it whilenits getting bakes seems like a fair idea to me even though it is technically waterproof.

I've had similar trouble on mine a few times.
Eventually after some raising and lowering, sunshine and coercion I'll get one side to barely catch.
I'm pretty clueless on top mechanicals.

Sent from my SM-G973U1 using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the reply Jynx and BA, I'll try it again in the sun with water this time. I'll keep you posted how it turns out. Anyone else have any ideas? If you know anyone at a Top Shop please let me know, I'd give them a call to see whay they recommend. Thanks again for the time and effort!
 

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On my convertible, I had the top unlatched for several months in my garage with the top up. This summer recently I tried to re-latch it, but the latch pins were off by 3/8 to 1/2 inch, not making the latch connection possible. One side missing the latch hole a bit more than the other. Tried leaving the car in the hot sun to make the top pliable but didn’t quite make the stretch. I read about the tack strip. Does anyone have any experience with stretching and or adjusting a top by 1/2 inch? Any help or phone number of a friendly shop or friend I could call would be helpful. Thanks for your time and effort. Jim

If you have the plastic rear 'window', it 'shrinks/expands' with temperature. Also, if you did not unzip it prior to its last lowering, it 'folds' and the 'folds' are quite 'tight' until the plastic heats up and get more pliable. Try unzipping it, fold it down in the boot, and see if you can latch the top.

Sunshine surely heats/expands the plastic. I've read where some folks use a hair dryer on it. I've never done that (never had to) but it sounds like it might help.

I recommend whenever you lower the the top, unlatch at the front, unzip and fold down the plastic window, and then lower the top the rest of the way. When raising the top, reverse the process. Raise the top but do not latch. Zip the rear window, and then latch. When its below about 70F I use a 2x4 to place between the front of the top and the windshield. That puts a little more 'slack' in the material and makes the zipping/unzipping a little easier.

Just some of my experiences/lessons learned over the years.

Pete
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
if you need some extra heat, you may want to try using a hair dryer or a heat gun...CAREFULLY

View attachment 31170
Thanks 66 67 for the info and great diagrams. My top however aligns perfectly as in the left diagram. My problem is that the hooks are missing the latches by a couple fractions of an inch. Stretching the top as it comes down has gotten it closer to latching, but not quite there yet. May try the hair dryer, though the temps have been getting hotter this week outside to leave it in the sun. I'll report what happens soon to pass on the info. Thanks again for the support.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
If you have the plastic rear 'window', it 'shrinks/expands' with temperature. Also, if you did not unzip it prior to its last lowering, it 'folds' and the 'folds' are quite 'tight' until the plastic heats up and get more pliable. Try unzipping it, fold it down in the boot, and see if you can latch the top.

Sunshine surely heats/expands the plastic. I've read where some folks use a hair dryer on it. I've never done that (never had to) but it sounds like it might help.

I recommend whenever you lower the the top, unlatch at the front, unzip and fold down the plastic window, and then lower the top the rest of the way. When raising the top, reverse the process. Raise the top but do not latch. Zip the rear window, and then latch. When its below about 70F I use a 2x4 to place between the front of the top and the windshield. That puts a little more 'slack' in the material and makes the zipping/unzipping a little easier.

Just some of my experiences/lessons learned over the years.

Pete
Hey JaPete, this is something I did not think of. The window down would certainly take some of the stress off the tightness as the top is coming down. We've got big thunderstorms today, I'll give it a try and let you know what happens. Great tip. Thanks for your support. Jim
 

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Thanks 66 67 for the info and great diagrams. My top however aligns perfectly as in the left diagram. My problem is that the hooks are missing the latches by a couple fractions of an inch. Stretching the top as it comes down has gotten it closer to latching, but not quite there yet. May try the hair dryer, though the temps have been getting hotter this week outside to leave it in the sun. I'll report what happens soon to pass on the info. Thanks again for the support.
ahhhh, so what you are saying is that it is not coming down all the way? it is not tweaked to the left or right?

in that case, definitely leave it in the sun but see if you can place some weight on the leading edge of the top to help it stretch. you may have to use a heat gun evenly all over the top and the sides so that all the material relaxes. as @japete92 said, remove the rear window to allow a full stretch
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
On my convertible, I had the top unlatched for several months in my garage with the top up. This summer recently I tried to re-latch it, but the latch pins were off by 3/8 to 1/2 inch, not making the latch connection possible. One side missing the latch hole a bit more than the other. Tried leaving the car in the hot sun to make the top pliable but didn’t quite make the stretch. I read about the tack strip. Does anyone have any experience with stretching and or adjusting a top by 1/2 inch? Any help or phone number of a friendly shop or friend I could call would be helpful. Thanks for your time and effort. Jim

Hello guys who responded to my convert top issue. So today was a pretty hot day in Ohio and left the car out in the sun for a couple hours mid day, put some water spray on it too and unzipped the back window as previously suggested. The latch pin on the driver side, I did get it to lock,but no luck with the passenger side. I found some type of adjuster nut and square headed screw on the top carriage rail just above the rear quarter window and played with that on both sides. Tried both sides all the way out and then all the way in and it seemed to make it worse. Passenger side latch pin was still off by 3/8 inch from the latch hole. I had to unlatch the driver side again to try to make a readjustment but still no luck. Now the driver side will not latch again. Wish someone knew about adjusting the top carriage forward (or backward). Any convertible top shops you could recommend I call? My top is in new condition, but was put on 20 years ago and the car kept in dry storage with the top latched. So it did latch till recently. Thanks for any more info or suggestions. Jim
 

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jimbo, where in Ohio are you at?

as for getting a recommendation, at the next car show you goto, ask the owner of ANY convertible whether they know of a reputable shop, even if it's nowhere close. that faraway shop may know of a top shop local to you
 
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