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Discussion Starter #1
I did some searching, but I can't find it now...
A while back I saw a pic of a DIY'd hard top side latch. It was a 'L' bracket, a bolt and a horizontal, cylindrical lower nut. It looks like it needed to be unscrewed to release.

I'd like to do something like this. My current setup has a Hard Dog bar, stock side latches, and Sparco Sprints on sliders. To take the top off, I slide the seats forward so I can open the latches. They still scrape the hell out of the rollbar.

I have new seats, Sparco Chronos, that I want to mount in a fixed position onto the floor--- so I need to come up with a hard top latch solution first. Spec Miata plates probably won't work, as the seats will block access to the bolts.

Anybody remember this pic?
 

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Side latches arent necessary, but theyre sure nice to have. Ive been running my hard top without them for over a year..as long as you have the top and rear mounts in there nicely, there really isnt anything to worry about.

That said, I'd like to know more about it as well.
 

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Sides are not needed but I would just get them. Whats another 30-50 bucks for peace of mind. Just get them or go to rennenmetal.com and order the metal brackets.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I know I don't 'need' side latches, but I'm not going to leave them off - the car will see some track time in July. If it's not to secure it down better and possibly remove another degree of chassis flex, it's to make it harder for a thief to grab.

I'm wary of using SpecMiata side plates--- the constant screwing/uncrewing of the side plates would be a hassle and possibly damage the threads on the top. Slotting the holes to remove the plates without fully unbolting them may be an option, but it may also make it difficult to remove/ reinstall the top.

I may have some time to model/ rapid prototype a solution next week. Does anyone have the dimensions or a scan of a set of Spec Miata plates? It would save me the time of removing and measuring the latches on the car.
 

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I know I don't 'need' side latches, but I'm not going to leave them off - the car will see some track time in July. If it's not to secure it down better and possibly remove another degree of chassis flex, it's to make it harder for a thief to grab.

I'm wary of using SpecMiata side plates--- the constant screwing/uncrewing of the side plates would be a hassle and possibly damage the threads on the top. Slotting the holes to remove the plates without fully unbolting them may be an option, but it may also make it difficult to remove/ reinstall the top.

I may have some time to model/ rapid prototype a solution next week. Does anyone have the dimensions or a scan of a set of Spec Miata plates? It would save me the time of removing and measuring the latches on the car.
Bro, to be honest... since the day I put my top on, I haven't taken it off. Seriously.

You will love it, car just feels like a diff car completely.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Bro, to be honest... since the day I put my top on, I haven't taken it off. Seriously.

You will love it, car just feels like a diff car completely.
I know, I've been running my HT for over a year. I do occasionally take it off for a week or 2 at a time in the summer, though.

I'd wager that a lot of that 'feel' comes from the combined 6 mounting locations... that's why I don't want to just stop running the side latches to clear my seats. I'm just looking for alternatives to the factory latches.

I still haven't gotten to take the stock latches off to 3d model them, but I may get a chance this (long) weekend.
 

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I only use quick release front latches... and NEVER take it off. Just get a peice of flat alum and a wing nut to use for the quick release part.
 

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so can someone tell me how to get the side latches set up or should I just go with out them on my 1999 miata
 

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reduce weight and go without.
 

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Lots of necro threads popping up lately lol.

to be of some assistance...
if you have a rollbar and hardtop then fixed/bolt-in side mount brackets are usually very doable...plus the stock latches are heavy and bulky...try googling "spec miata hard top brackets"....they're also not that hard to DIY, make template out of posterboard/cardboard, trace on sheet of aluminum angle grinder with a cutoff wheel & drill
 
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