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1979 Buick Century T-Top...anyone ever seen one before?


Guest Kai One

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Guest Kai One

Sorry i posted this in general discussion but this seems like the more appropriate board....

Im just trying to see if anyone has every come across these, my grandmother has her 1979 Century T-Top 2 door that im trying to find any information i can on, she bought it brand new from a dealership in Hawaii back then. It seems ultra rare as im unable to find any information on them anywhere. Hers is red with a white top. She said that there were only 17 of them made because it ended up being too expensive for buick to make at the time, im just trying to find any information i can on them. I really appreciate any info anyone has on them, thanks a bunch,

Kyle

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I seem to recall some of the aftermarket t-tops on the GM midsize cars in '79 or so. Most probably done by a dealer at the point of sale, or soon thereafter. There should be something on the driver's side B-pillar or in the glove compartment documents which would tell who did the work, as was usually the case for "modified" vehicles like that. Probably an authorized American Sunroof distributor/installer.

Most of the American Sunroof t-tops had a portion of the original roof metal between the glass tops, but there was one brand which had the glass tops meeting each other with all metal underneath them hidden when the tops were not removed.

Pics would be nice. Probably looks pretty sharp!

Take care,

NTX5467

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Guest Silverghost

At one time there were many aftermarket T -Top and Sun/moon, & convertable roof conversion outfits around that various new car dealers would often use.

These were often described by dealer sales folks as rare "Factory Options" .

In many cases the newly built car would go directly to the conversion company before the new car dealer took delivery. Some of these conversion companys products were actually factory approved & sold through the factory dealer networks.

Please post a photo of this car.

It might be fun to see what your grandmother indeed has there.

I remember some of these conversions were ill-designed and soon leaked or rattled like crazy !

Then try to fix those pesky leaks & rattles !

Some Conversions often weakened the car's roof or body structure and caused twisting and other body flex issues.

They sure looked great and made many a new car dealer lots of extra money.

Edited by Silverghost (see edit history)
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Of the American Sunroof Corp installations I saw (at an authorized conversion facility), it was kind of scary. After the headliner and related trim moldings was removed, the "fixture" was installed -- a crossbar with upturned ends was indexed with the holes where the sunvisors used to be, with a front-to-back bar and then that was anchored to the rear corners of the inner roof structure. Of course, it was tightened to secure it into place. THEN the outer roof panel was marked with a template and the conversion began. Before the "fixture" was removed, the new center support structure to hold the glass panels was installed and secured into place.

Typically, there were water leaks at the corners of the weatherstrips . . . whether it was due to slightly deformed weatherstrips or the drain gutters having obstructions in them. BUT it seemed to me that if you injected some silicone into those corners, into the inside of the hollow weatherstrip, the deformation would be decreased. Squeaks and rattles could happen too, but they usually happened on the hardtop/sedan models also . . . maybe just not as many or as quickly, by observation.

Body-on-frame cars were usually "no big deal" to do, but if it was a unibody car (think Camaros/Firebird), then the amount of metal removed from the roof became more critical as that was a part of the car's body main structure. The Camaro/Firebird convertible conversions, plus the later factory-done F-body convertibles, had more "understructure" in the floor pan. EVERY t-top car also had "wedges" toward the top of the door pillar, just as some factory convertibles used to, to limit body flex.

Hopefully, there is some name identification on the glass panels' outer trim, plus the conversion label in the lh door openning area.

Enjoy!

NTX5467

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