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Old 06-12-2017, 09:52 AM   #171
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Turns out, the rarity of the black canvas may hurt my hunt for some material to fix it. Although I really like the black.

Here is sportsmobile very quick response fyi when asking for some additional black canvas for me to repair it:

"Thank you for your inquiry with Sportsmobile. We have only done 2 or three back canvas tops, mostly out of our Texas office. Can you tell us which of our three Sportsmobile plants your conversion was built? We will need to see if the one that built your conversion has any black materials."
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Old 06-12-2017, 11:12 AM   #172
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I'm pretty sure 86Scotty just replaced the canvas on a SMB with a black one. Might want to PM him to see where he got it.
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Old 06-12-2017, 11:15 AM   #173
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Luckily Sportsmobile has been great so far. Van was built in Texas. SMB west redirected my request to them and they have already contacted me asking how much of it I wanted. Plan is to cut off the damaged bottom area (2.5") and sew on an extension to the top of the canvas to compensate.

I figure the top of the canvas is greatly protected by the fiberglass top and poses very little risk to leaking.
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Old 06-19-2017, 10:04 AM   #174
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Made some great progress over the weekend, and met up with Boywonder who had some great advice. Was great seeing the penthouse in all its glory and the awesome interior he has built.

Sanded the top and raptor lined it. At first i was going overboard with the sanding. Eventually got over taking it all down to the white.



Needless to say, even with putting up some plastic, my whole garage is coated in red dust. I ended up removing the yakima tracks.

Sprayed it with black raptor liner. Looks pretty good. I had one bottle that I must not have mixed enough as the texture was a little rough and I can see those spots when looking for it. But overall, pretty happy. I used all for liters for the top and I had set my little dewalt 3 gallon compressor to ~60 PSI.



I used a small punch, smaller htan a standard hole punch, to attach the rubber seal.
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Old 06-19-2017, 10:09 AM   #175
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Now my attention is on the lifting mechanism. Need to wirebrush off as much rust as possible, clean up some SMB weds and por 15 any questionable spots. Then I'll rattle can it.

Stripping off the foam padding and some fabric they adhered to it isnt fun.





Lastly, I am deciding how much work I want to do on the canvas. Overall it is pretty good, except for where it attaches to the van in a couple spots. I do have some canvas coming from SMB north, but boy wonder might have sold me on not cutting the canvas and sewing an extension. Still pondering this one.

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Old 06-26-2017, 02:25 PM   #176
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Woke up planning on mocking up the lift mechanism, finished the day by lowering the top onto the van. Decided, "why would I try and assemble this in my garage, when I'll have to lift or disassemble before putting on the van?"

Well, it all worked out.

Started by cutting a sunroof and placing the side rails on the van to mock it up.





After measuring it out and looking at how it was mocking up, commited to it and cut the hole. Things of note, jigsaw with a fresh bi metal blade worked better tha the air chisel on my underpowered compressor. Unlike boywonder, and possibly all SMB west installs, I did my forward cut right along the B pillar support, without cutting it at all. This is how the donor van was.



Assembled the lift mechanism with fresh stainless hardware. I still have everything just in place with clamps in case I didn't like the positioning when it lowered the top



I then lowered the mechanism, ordered some nachos to entice helpers, and lifted the top up onto the van. This ended up being very easy for 5 grown men. Raised the roof to test.



The look when lowered



Overall, really happy with it so far. Really surprised how much I could get done with an afternoon. Up next is raptor lining the roof of the van to match the penthouse, secure the rails to the van and attach the canvas.

Couple questions:

1. How do you ensure the top comes down perfectly everytime? Seems like there is a lot of slop and could use a bump in a direction to really sit properly.

2. The front doesnt completely sit down on the van. I believe this is probably from the top getting fixed before it got to me and the curve of it wasn't dead nuts. SHould I get over it and rely on the canvas waterproofing to do its job, or should I try something else to get a better seal. Obviously dont want a lot of water going under the top when closed, but everything should be waterproof and the raptor liner on the roof/gutters will do well to keep it from rusting.

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Old 06-26-2017, 02:42 PM   #177
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Great progress. It will go much easier on your brothers van!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bemerritt View Post
1. How do you ensure the top comes down perfectly everytime? Seems like there is a lot of slop and could use a bump in a direction to really sit properly.
You just have to align it.. sometimes it will come down to the side if it's windy, or on a hill or you do it wrong.. No worries, just lift it a bit and move it to one side or the other.. there's plenty of "wiggle" room.

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Originally Posted by bemerritt View Post
2. The front doesnt completely sit down on the van. I believe this is probably from the top getting fixed before it got to me and the curve of it wasn't dead nuts. SHould I get over it and rely on the canvas waterproofing to do its job, or should I try something else to get a better seal. Obviously dont want a lot of water going under the top when closed, but everything should be waterproof and the raptor liner on the roof/gutters will do well to keep it from rusting.
Interesting.. Is the rain gutter edge built up too much? Or is the gap because the front edge has been cut down? I'd try to trim the top to get it to align.. otherwise you'll have water and leaves and mice and all sorts of crap in there!

Also, did you sleeve the bars? Very recommended when you have it apart.
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Old 06-26-2017, 02:50 PM   #178
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I think the gutter part is fine, I think it is the curve of it is slightly off due to a little too much material being removed. I am thinking of having a backing gasket attached to the van that it can come down on. It is a very small gap, but water would easily get under it.

Dont get a lot of rain down here in so cal, more worried about condensation on the roof when I start driving more than anything else.

I had purchased the tubing to sleeve the inside and I went off of boywonders build and got 3/4" OD. They didn't fit, I was frustrated and so I moved on with the assembly. Im sure I'll disassemble and do it at some point, but yesterday I was dertimined to get the top on the van.
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Old 06-26-2017, 03:02 PM   #179
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Maybe just install, then come back later and build it back up with fiberglass, touch up the raptor, and you're good to go.. but the repair could be made with the top on and functioning.
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Old 06-26-2017, 03:08 PM   #180
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Ya, building up the material isn't a bad approach. Not well versed in fiberglass, but i guess no better time than the present! I'll have to get a better look at how big the gap really is.
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