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-   -   Folding Top? (http://bucketheadbash.com/showthread.php?t=18849)

TriodeLuvr 08-08-2013 08:32 AM

Folding Top?
New guy here, so go easy...

I've been riding a motorcycle to work the last five years, but the increasing traffic and crazies on cell phones are starting to get to me. So, as I'm getting older and thinking more about safety first, I decided to get a T-bucket. It's due to be loaded on the truck today, and I should have it within a week.

Now, just like the motorcycle, I plan to drive this almost everyday to work. I have a backup for days when I know it will rain, but there will be times the forecast is wrong or I forget to pay attention. I'm also planning to drive it in the winter, and that means I have to survive temps at least into the 20s, just like riding the bike. We don't get a lot of precipitation here, so unlike many parts of the country, winter usually means I only have to brave the cold, not bad road conditions.

Anyway, this all means the bucket will need to be configured to handle this, and the first thing I'll need is a top. In my case, the bucket has no doors, and I don't think I can get in and out with a fixed top. So, my first question is whether anyone here on the forum has had a folding top built, and if so, who did the work? Second, I've noticed there are generally two types of cloth tops. The first uses a relatively lightweight frame like those sold by Speedway. These mount on the rim of the bucket. The second type uses a heavier frame with a lower strut that mounts on a pivot point on the outside of the bucket, two or three inches below the rim. Does anyone know who sells the heavier frames? I haven't seen them anywhere except completed cars.

Any help with this will be very much appreciated.


3quarter32 08-10-2013 01:43 PM

Jack, you didn't mention where you are located, so don't know if you are to far away to make it to the Buckethead Bash. There will be lots of buckets around for you to get ideas from. Sorry, I can't be of any help, as I am a solid roof guy. I would think that there are not very many quicky type lids out there that can be undone and done with you in the bucket. Hey, you could be the first! Thinking that B.C. could have some ideas for you.

TriodeLuvr 08-11-2013 10:13 AM

Hi Lee, thanks for the advice. The Bash is too far away, at least for this year (I'm in Austin). I blew my budget finding this car and getting it on the transporter. Can't afford to take any more time off work right now.

Incidentally, I think my first post was incorrect regarding the frames. Both the Speedway frame and the Spirit appear to mount to the outside of the bucket on the sides, and both seem well made. The Spirit might have an advantage in terms of getting the car covered quickly, because it's available with upholstery already fitted.

Anyway, here's the basic frame configuration of both types:


There are two ways I see to approach a modification to this frame. The best, but most complicated, would be a conversion to a fully folding frame that can collapse onto the rear deck behind the bucket. Second best would be a frame that allows the front 1/3 to be folded back for ease of entry. Both approaches would require that I fabricate a quick-disconnect system for the front header bar. The "1/3-fold" top would also require that the rear portion of the frame be held in position when the header is removed. That will probably require two struts from the rear hoop down to the back of the bucket.

At this point, I'm thinking it might be best to buy the Spirit top to get the car covered quickly, then make necessary modifications. The car is due to arrive tomorrow, and there will undoubtedly be other issues to deal with as well. Summer is almost over, so there's not a lot of time left to get this done.


INDIAN OUTLAW 08-11-2013 01:08 PM

welcome to the forum!
Looks like you have a tuff nut to crack!
I have no solutions only food for thought.
Spirit has a hard top and a soft top both require a 20" high windshield.(I think that this the standard size) What size is your windshield?
Keep in mind that the top has very little to no side protection so wind will blow rain in. Everyone that I have talked to say the tops are more for wind and looks than for rain they do help but are not that efficient.
As for heat in the winter you can get with a company called Vintage Air they may be able to help you
the problem is you dont have much room to work with! I think you will understand when you get your bucket and try to get in. Good luck and have fun!! please keep us posted

2old2fast 09-12-2013 06:59 PM

Heat for cold days is best accomplished w/in seat heaters , they're not terribly expensive & do a pretty decent job .

INDIAN OUTLAW 09-14-2013 06:06 PM


Originally Posted by 2old2fast (Post 26122)
Heat for cold days is best accomplished w/in seat heaters , they're not terribly expensive & do a pretty decent job .

That sounds like the ticket for a t-bucket!!

the bat 09-22-2013 07:42 PM

Not many folding tops,but they canbe made to fold ,but make a fairly big pile behind cockpit. Nesting the top bows is a vary carefull job in designing bows.
If your handy,most any small auto heater core can be made into a homemade small box with a small 12volt fan mounted to that,the box is made so you mount to the bottom of you cockpit floor,the vent in your floor near or even under your seats,blowing into the footwell. Needs be a type you can close,plus even better if it can adjust were you point flow[ it can be cover completely in the summer by a carpet.:cool:;)

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