Slow progress, but progress. I’ll be glad when the stripping is done… because it sucks, compared to building.

Spent a few hours today working on the convertible top. Was attempting to get the whole top off intact. Well, that didn’t happen. But I made a valiant effort… Also removed the trailer wiring adapter and some other wiring stuff while back there.. and removed the boot door and all the trim in the back.

They don’t really design the top (or most of the rear interior trim) to be completely removed without being able to cycle the top up and down at least a bit. Some of the bolts are hard enough to access when everything is working properly… When it’s not… and when part of the car is crushed… ugh.

Here are three of the critical bolts. Which were hidden behind a crushed and stuck taillight, and a crushed and stuck hydraulic pump. After removing those, they were still arm-deep in a hole like one Indiana Jones would have to feel around inside…
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Two of these three came out easy with a ratcheting box-end wrench. But the third was wedged against crushed sheet metal. I had to work it out with an open end wrench…about 35 degrees of rotation, flip wrench, another 35 degrees, flip wrench… repeat, blind, by feel, for 45 minutes. But finally got it.
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Only to find that there were even MORE fasteners I couldn’t see and couldn’t access.

Eventually got things loose enough to shift around and cut out the critical parts I needed…
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The “sunroof” panel, and the rear tensioner with pivots and latches. Plus some trim and stuff.
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The “sunroof” panel will be used to build the front seal/latch portion of my “bikini” top. The tensioner assembly will be the rear attachment point for the tonneau cover.

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