hardtop restoration

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Feb 9, 2002
well im starting to work on my hard top for winter. i think i'm going to make a writeup about what's going on, but i need some help right now.
i took off the roof so i could work on the channel and found out that i'm dealing with some pretty seriously decayed material.
what should i do about this gutter-pan? it's rusted so badly that i don't think a thick coat of primer is going to solve the problem. what have some of you done?
are there replacements to be bought?
has anyone fabricated one of these from steel or fiberglass?
what about ducting material (i think that stuff is tin isn't it?)?
any thoughts you guys have would be great.


this side is pretty straight.

but this side is bent and the material has failed.

another view
I don't want to ask how you seperated the the fglass from that rain gutter :-[ but it appears your gutter is rusted or bent beyond help. If that is so, and I am pretty much in the same spot, so far as I can find thus far is CCOT makes replacement steel rain gutters. They are pricey and you can probably find a hard top with a good gutter for less than what they want for the gutter in the raw alone (seen quite a few for $100 range). As for me...I love a challenge, so unless someone here on board knows of a better source for a new gutter...I'll be picking one up from CCOT and doing the rivet dance. :cheers:
I'm rebuilding my top for winter as well, but my gutter and top channel appears to be in nearly perfect shape, :flipoff2: so I just have to drill out the old rivets, have the top smoothed out and repainted and then just re-rivet back to the top. If I was in your shoes Rus, I would probably first try to find a use top, and if thats not possible the CCOT gutters are your only choice AFAIK.
Just came out of the garage putting a new raingutter on. Got it from ccot for $159. Was easy to install - a few cuts and a few welds. Used the 3M seam sealer and pop rivets. I used rivets that were a little long, 6mm by 1/8" I think, but I put the head against the gutter and let the end stick up thru the glass. I held a 3# hammer against the head and used a tack hammer to smash the end down. Worked well. Going to put another bead of 3M over the top of the rivets and along the top of the gutter tomorrow. Got some pics but I'll have to send them tomorrow.
Specter (I've been reading through their new catalog) sells a fiberglas gutter they've made for this (you asked about fiberglas) but they won't ship it. You have to pick it up at their shop.
thanks for the input.
i'll do some thinking about this for the next day or two to decide on the best route.

more questions:
would it be possible to use the old one as a template (after straightening) to make one out of fglass?
and what about the ducting material idea?
or what about 1/16" steel?
i think i could build one, but the question becomes is it worth my time.

well, thanks again.
I think you'd burn thru $159 worth of time and materials effort pretty fast fabbing it up yourself. My .02.
Before I bought mine I was going to fab one. Looking back, I am glad I bought the ccot because it has the curled edges and fits like it should. I don't regret paying $159. Its did take about 3-4 weeks for them to make it and get it to me, something to think about.
Ok, to bring this up from the past :D i am also needing to redo my gutters. i have access to a brake, shear, and a shrinker. would it be posable to just make the gutter shapped like this __| or does it need to be shaped like the stock one at |__| ? and why does it have to have that lip on the out side? all it does is colect water.
That lip keeps the water from dripping on your pretty little head when you get out of your rig. It also helps channel the water to the back when driving.
yea, but it also seems that it just holds water to sit and rust also :D
so, i could just make some channel with a L shape?
while the fiberglass is out, you may even want to consider reglassing it yourself, or take it to a boat place and have them do it up nice.
I have had my gutters from CCOT for a good 4 years now and still havent put it all together. maybe this winter finally. The riviting part is pretty ominous.

Mr. Toyota made it riveted.

I don't question his decisions. :D

I think some have, don't know long term results.
Are any of you guys near Laramie or Denver, I have a hard top roof panel with one small rusted through section (about 4" long) and a couple small surface rust spots on the rain gutter. The fiberglass is in good shape, it's FREE to who ever comes and gets it.
toddslater said:
I think you'd burn thru $159 worth of time and materials effort pretty fast fabbing it up yourself. My .02.

yeah, i could see doin a part of the raingutter (i did the front piece...) but to get the whole thing done and right without having a correct one to use as a template....i don't know.

$159 is a pretty good price too, it used to be $249 iirc....

yea, CCOT wants 199 for the rear part, and another 50 for the front part. i was just trying to see if i can do it cheaper, as i am moving in two weeks, and will be moving to apartment, and i dont know how long that top will stay on. it feels like its almost about to fall off :D
Has anyone done a write up on this "rain-gutter" re-attachment? I have the same issue on a '78 that I'm buying in NC next week. I am going to have to either figure out how to do this properly so she want leak during the ship back to CO, or I'd love to find one in NC that is used in good shape. Any help on this is greatly appreciated.
No writeups that I've seen, but the information above pretty much explains it. Its really straight forward. Toughest part was making sure all the pieces lined up and fit correctly before cutting them and welding them up. I used some clamps to hold all the pieces to the top to get an exact fit on all the joints. Measure 27 times, cut once. :D

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