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Sources for weathered top material and/or methods to age new material


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I am restoring an original 1930s convertible sedan which will require a new top and top boot. Because the vehicle has old paint, plating and interior, I don't want to use new top material. I wonder if anyone out there has some left over top material in either black or beige? Alternatively, suggestions for weathering new material to appear old? Thanks in advance!

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What color is the top going to be?  If Haartz/Stayfast, then black is hard to weather, but tan can be made to look older.  Dirty hands, weak tea applied to various spots, very cautious use of a wire brush....there are things you can do.

 

That said, it's difficult to make material look old, versus looking like someone tried to MAKE it look old.  Metal and wood are easy to weather, top material not so much.

 

As top using old material, there's usually a reason it was taken off a car, and trying to work and sew old material, from a trimmer's standpoint, is either a nightmare or sometimes not possible.

 

While I appreciate what you're trying to do, my actual advice is to put on a new top with new material, and just live with the fact that it's a partially restored car.  Otherwise the money you spend for material and labor, while not wasted, is definitely diminished in value.

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Thanks so much for the excellent advice! Our aim is to weather beige Stayfast as per the attached. In so doing, the trimmer should be able to work his magic which brings up the issue of the black binding. Or whether to have the pieces made prior to the weathering process?

9F1B0FDA-.JPG

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Good luck and please report back of any suitable solutions you may find.

 

I experimented/researched/studied various methods to appropriately "age" various vintage car aspect & materials over 30 years ago, i.e. long before "it" (or "patina") became fashionable. I was (and still am) only interested in efforts or solutions which do not appear obviously "faked" like 99.9 % jobs out there today do.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Try staining a swatch of new material with coffee of various strengths..Some color will wash out and fade.. but you can do it again.

Don't over due.. a hint of wearthing will go a long way..you can add more latter..

Fabric dies may also be helpfull but more permanent😱

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On 9/23/2020 at 6:58 AM, Restorer32 said:

I am amazed at the lengths folks will go to to make a car appear more "original".

I gave up on that as people can usually tell anyway - now, I just do whatever it is to a 97 to 100 point standard and just don't clean it ever again - some dust, roar dirt, water, sunlight, and ... usually does the trick.  Turns out too when time for sale, people really are not interested in big bucks for all original and seem much more happy with dusty 100 point and even happier with dusted off 100 point.   Get your wife to go with you in a 1MM something with moths flying around in it or dirt on it - most wives won't and the neighbors have no respect for it either. 

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