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Discussion Starter #1
I am one of the people that bought a Miata not because of the convertible but for the car itself. The convertible is great but I don't need it and I have always been a coupe kind of guy. I was wondering if anyone has done or tried to permenently attach/mould the hardtop to the car.

Would it be tons of work? I have no idea. Is the factory hardtop fiberglass?

I am sure it has come up before but my searching didn't come up with much.

I look forward to your opinions.

Chris
 

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Would it be tons of work?
Yes

Is the factory hardtop fiberglass?
No. It is Sheet Moulding Composite (SMC).


I am sure it has come up before
I recall reading about several others who shared your sentiments over at Miata.net. Talk invariable drifted from "Why would you want to do that?" to "Use SpecMiata brackets to bolt the hard top in place" to "Why don't you just convert it to a Roadster Coupe using oem Mazda sheet metal?" There was also several discussions about the technical difficulties of moulding the oem removeable hardtop to the body. After work I'll see what I can dig up for you. I hope this gets you pointed in the right direction. If you really want it, go for it. With enough time, money, and Bondo just about anything is possible.
 

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I'd yank the soft and bolt down the hard. Maybe fab up some new rear brackets and side brackets too.

Don't bother with bondo though. My hardtop creaks and moves so much it'd probably crack right through and look like asss.

but....

coupe. that's my answer.
 

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It was a joke. And not all "bondo" is created equal. That kevlar reinforced Evercoat stuff is pretty strong stuff but I would never actually use it to bond the hard top to the unibody chassis.
 

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I'd love to do it someday, but like y8s said I'd think the connection between the top and body wouldn't fair too well and most likely crack in time. The hardtop does flex quite a lot no matter how tight you think you've got it on.
 

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Difference is the 1996 Miata M Coupe concept was a show car and it didn't use the oem factory hard top.
Yeah ,and it was a Mazda in house concept car. An individual would have a tough time replicating it.

Still, I think glassing in the oem hardtop would be cool!
 

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Like the original poster, I am a hardtop freak too :D

But I wouldn't try and bond it to the body as the roof would experience stresses differently form what it is designed and would probably crack at the new bond or somewhere else.

I would leave it as it is and think of the join between the roof and body like a movement joint in a building's structure - the structure is still intact but it needs to have some independant movement to stop fracture.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Blast that is a good point that I didn't think of. All that flexing would probably break the thing apart, especially if it was designed that way. And I have little to no experience when it comes to metal but the two materials sound like a pain in the ass to combine.

You guys mentioned a way to bolt it closer and more securely to the car? What do they spec miata people do? Please be descriptive because I am still trying to buy a hardtop and haven't experienced/played around with it yet.

Chris
 

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The oem hardtop has three possible attachment points: rear frankenstein bolts, side latches at the b-pillar just in front of the seat belt towers, and the windshield header latches (just like the folding soft top). You really only need the windshield latches plus EITHER the frankenstein bolts or the side latches. Many people run just the windshield latches and the frankenstein bolts (it's like a slotted hole that fits over the bolt). I prefer to run all 3 since there is reduced wind noise although some might not notice the difference. Several aftermarket hard tops never used the frankenstein bolts since it would have been more difficult to mold in the attachment points so they run just the windshield header and side latches. In leu of the quick-release latches it is possible to use fasteners to securely bolt the top to the latch strikers.
 

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holy

when was that taken?
The car is still owned by Mazda and can be seen at various Mazda events. They also still have the Mono-Posto and the Speedster although last time I saw it, they had repainted it a hideous orange with prism graphics and checkerboard upholstry.
 

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I like the old civic phone dial wheels on the red miata. Heavy, narrow and funny as heck looking wheels.
CRX wheels, actually. Affectionately knows as "Salt & Pepper Shakers" in the Honda realm :lol:

I had a set on my Integra for a while. Then I had a CRX junkie offer me a boatload of cash for them, so I got some G2 Golf wheels :roll:
 
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