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Reatta Sun Roof - Aftermarket v. Original


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I looked at a 1990 Reatta this past weekend with the idea of purchasing it and believe the Sun Roof to be an aftermarket one. Its glass and the open/close button is on a piece of molding that's on the top of the roof. Other than looking at option codes, how can you tell aftermarket from original (i.e., what does a factory original sunroof look like inside)? Also, would an aftermarket sunroof severely impact the value of the Reatta?<P>Thanks,<P>Alan

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The way to spot a factory sunroof on ANY car is simple. On a factory job, the sheet metal of the top of the car will be bent in at a 90 degree angle and welded to the frame of the sunroomf or another piece of sheet metal, which will be fastened to the sunroof's frame. The factory color will continue well inside this crease and stop where the frame of the sunroof starts. <P>An aftermarket job will alway have a metal rim visible from the outside. This is because they had to cut a hole in the sheet metal and the ring seals that hole to the frame of the sunroof. While it is nearly flush with the sheet metal, the frame will be about 1/16" to 1/8" higher than the sheet metal, and will usually be black or polished aluminum. <P>While aftermarket roofs are easily distinguished from a factory one, they are often made by the same company that made the factory sunroof. That is because nearly all manufacturers have learned the hard way that making a leak-proof sunroof is not a part-time job. GM lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in the 70s to mid-80s by making their own sunroofs. Nearly all of them leaked and GM lost a fortune in warranty repairs. That is why when you see a full-size GM 70-80's car, the sunroof is almost always glued or taped shut. <P>One of the bigger brands is Webatso. The supply roofs to nearly every brand, foreign and domestic. You can find the major brands on the internet. <P>There's two down sides to putting one in a Reatta. To the ultra-purist, it is no longer original. (Run a photo of a non-original car in the Buick Bugle and watch the nasty mail flow in the following month.) The other down side is headroom. If you are over six feet tall, think about this VERY seriously. Sunroof installation is a one-way street. Once it's in, it's in. <P>Good luck.<P>Joe

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All Reatta years had a sunroof only option. The 1988 model year started offering the option mid year. Stan Leslie knows about when this was.<BR>Sunroof are metal sliding roofs. The Reattas factory sunroof tilts up first then slides backwards over the roof and the top of the rear window.<BR>Moonroofs are glass paneled sliding roofs that have a sliding sunshade on the interior to block the sun on hot days. The glass panel usually tilts and slides but in most cars it slide back into the roof and reduces both front and rear seat headroom.<BR>No Reattas were ever offered with moonroofs to the best of our knowledge.

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A collector will probably never buy a Reatta with an aftermarket sunroof. Other people may not care.<BR>The sunroof you describe is glass which leads us to believe it is aftermarket. The switch location is on the ceiling between the sun visors which is the same as the factory location.<BR>The inside of a factory sunroof is covered with the same fabric as the rest of the ceiling (inside roof).

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