Before You Try to Get a New Top, Read This: Convertible Tops Have Three Different Styles

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If you are like most people who have paid for a custom auto paint job, you might assume that your new paint will stay looking great forever. Unfortunately, rock chips, bad car washes, and unfortunate car accidents can wreak havoc on an otherwise perfect paint job--leaving you with frustrating dents, dings, and scratches. I have owned several cars over the years, and I can tell you first hand how important it is to know how to take care of your paint. This blog discusses different ways you might be able to fend off trouble, so that you can stay proud of your car.

Before You Try to Get a New Top, Read This: Convertible Tops Have Three Different Styles

26 August 2016
 Categories: , Blog

Convertibles (the cars, that is) are often sought after for their prestige as well as the fun of having the wind whip through your hair while the top is down or off. If you have acquired a convertible that did not come with its original top, and you would like to replace it, you should be aware that there is more than one kind of convertible top. To get the correct one, read the following and then visit your auto body and paint shop to have them track down a new top.

Hard Top

Many convertibles in the early to late seventies had "hard tops." These bizarre convertible tops unlocked and snapped off completely, like you were removing the top portion of a model car. This may be why your vintage convertible no longer has one. These tops were often damaged after they spent some time off of the vehicles, or they were misplaced just prior to selling the vehicles to other previous owners. The auto body shop will be able to tell you if this is what you have, since there are very distinct connections for securing the hard tops to the car.

Canvas or Leather Soft Tops

More often than not, convertibles have retractable canvas or leather soft tops. If you have a top-of-the-line vintage convertible, you likely have a motorized retractable soft top. Unfortunately, these often met with disastrous ends because the motors jam up, and the tops get stuck in some position between all the way up or down. If you still have a motor button for the top, you can press it to hear it whine loudly and see the hoists in the back of the car trying to push something up. These are fairly common tops to replace, and even if yours is a rare model, the car manufacturers have developed conversion kits to make it easier to secure a modern soft top on older convertibles.


T-tops were so named because the front top of the car formed a perfect "T" to the back of the vehicle, and then the side portions of the roof would slide out and away from the vehicle, exposing the "T" in the middle. This will be most obvious if you have a T-top convertible but have the missing roof sections. The auto shop may have to rummage through several salvage yards to find a full top for you, but T-tops are replaceable. 

Talk to a company like Westside Upholstery for more information.