Go Back   986 Forum - for Porsche Boxster & Cayman Owners > Porsche Boxster & Cayman Forums > Boxster General Discussions

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 11-13-2011, 04:59 PM   #1
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Redmond, Wa
Posts: 369
Convertible Top, to glass or not to glass

Hi,

My insurance company agreed to pay for my new top.
I had a small leak at the seam which I patched with some silicone, but after reading the stories here, I decided to give the insurance company a call.

Long story short, they send me a check and now I have to replace the top.

As usual there are 2 options: glass and plastic.
I know all the cons and pros of glass top.. however I wanted to ask:

Is there anyone who upgraded to glass top and regretted it afterwards?

Thanks
Sasha

sasha055 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2011, 05:21 PM   #2
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: atl
Posts: 363
no regrets. go glass!!!
__________________
-Tuan
tuanle16@juno.com
tuanle16 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2011, 05:24 PM   #3
Matt
 
MileHighBoxster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Colorado
Posts: 284
I looked at doing it with my last Boxster and decided to stay with the plastic. I like the larger window. I also see no downside with the stock window.
MileHighBoxster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2011, 06:35 PM   #4
Registered User
 
ChrisZang's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: San Carlos, CA 94070
Posts: 1,450
well, that's a no brainer: Glas
You will get very soon get used to the smaller window and not having to "karate chop" the window: priceless
__________________
I still wave at Boxsters, but they no longer wave back :-(
2002 Boxster S "Violet" (sold but not forgotten)
2009 Carrera 4S "Kelsey" (current ride)
2015 FIAT 500e "Nikki" my commuter car
ChrisZang is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2011, 06:48 PM   #5
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: UK
Posts: 874
I think there are a few factors here.

Does you Box live outside? If so, glass is a boon.

Do you need to replace the whole hood / top? May as well go glass.

The other question is how much does it cost you locally to get a new plastic screen sown in?

For me it was 200 vs about 700 for a whole new top. My top was fine and my Box lives indoors, so I just had the new screen.

I also prefer the external and view out from the cabin of the large plastic screen. So that's what I went for. Even If I have to get it replaced again once or twice, it will work out now more expensive. Guys who did the screen did an immaculate job.
__________________
Manual '00 3.2 S Arctic Silver
pothole is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2011, 08:15 PM   #6
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Redmond, Wa
Posts: 369
Well, I was pretty much set on glass, because it has a lot of positives

It's free (kinda, I have to pay the deductible)
I live in Seattle area.. so if it's not raining, I usually put the top down, sometimes when temperature is lower then 50F
It's a daily driver.. so I put the top down in the mornings and evenings and during the day it's parked with top up (you may never know when it rains in Seattle) so I don't have to worry about top cracking again..

However.. I never been inside a boxster with glass top, I saw pictures.. but I'm worried it's gonna be too closed up..
Also the restricted engine access and the fact that it's really hard to close the top...

I wanted to make sure I won't regret choosing glass.

On the bright side if I ever will have money to upgrade to all weather family car (997TT cab), resale value of boxster will be greater with glass top.

Thanks
Sasha
sasha055 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-13-2011, 09:23 PM   #7
Registered User
 
DenverSteve's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Denver/Winter Park, CO USA
Posts: 600
Since it will cost you the same regardless of which you go with, get the one you like best. Resale will not be effected with either top.
__________________
Denver Steve
Carrera, Cabriolet, 6-Speed, Black/Tan
DenverSteve is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 05:28 AM   #8
Registered User
 
MN 986's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: MN
Posts: 327
Garage
I am just finishing up my first driving season since I retrofitted an OEM 2004 top assembly (with glass) on my 2002, and I can't express how happy I am not to have to do the chop anymore. Living in Minnesota, I often drive with the top down in lower temps and I no longer have to worry about cracking another plastic window. Go with the glass!
MN 986 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 06:33 AM   #9
Registered User
 
Perfectlap's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 8,709
^You DON'T have to do the chop. Eventually the plastic creates a bend that has memmory.
doing the chop keeps it from developing that natural crease. So if you're doing the chop it may make it worse if the plastic is now well maintained.

What wrecks the plastic is not regulary using Plexus to keep the plastic from becoming hard and brittle or not heating up the cabin if the outside temp is below 60 degrees, before lowering the top. Or in my case, when I used to park outside I once cleared off some ice using too much force and it created a tiny 1/4" puncture that got bigger. Otherwise my top is spotless and the plastic is crystal clear after a good Renovo/Plastic cleaning.

I'd also like to do an OEM retrofit. Having replaced my previous convertible with an aftermarket glass top I know there are stretching issues, which I found to be extremely annoying. and I'm not crazy about the smaller window but it does look much nicer. I'd rather replace the plastic window professionaly if the OEM top is not possible but I think have plenty of time since my car is garaged and only drive weekends.
__________________
GT3 Recaro Seats - Boxster Red
GT3 Aero / Carrera 18" 5 spoke / Potenza RE-11
Fabspeed Headers & Noise Maker
BORN: March 2000 - FINLAND
IMS#1 REPLACED: April 2010 - NEW JERSEY -- LNE DUAL ROW
Perfectlap is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 06:45 AM   #10
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Olympia, Wa
Posts: 370
I have the robbins top on mine with the small glass window......I did not notice much of a difference between the new one and the old plastic one, still fills up the rearview mirror and outward visibility is not bad.
fivepointnine is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 07:10 AM   #11
Registered User
 
Chuck W.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Agoura Hills (LA) So.Cal.
Posts: 1,573
I put an OEM 2003 top on my '01. IMHO, there is no comparison. The glass window is well worth the upgrade.


__________________
1995 Porsche C4 Cab

2016 BMW M2, 6 Speed LBB - ED 7/2016
1997 993 Cab - Sold; 1997 993 Turbo - Sold
2001 Boxster S - Original Owner - 30K Miles -SOLD
Chuck W. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 07:49 AM   #12
ddb
www.klisstle.com
 
ddb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Charlotte, NC
Posts: 926
Garage
No regrets with aftermarket glass retrofit

I think installing a 2003 or 2004 OE frame and top like Chuck W. is the ultimate solution. However you have to find one and pay for it.

With your car being a daily driver and considering the climate where you live I would think having the electric rear defroster would be a nice addition as well.

IMO, the limited access to the top of the engine with the aftermarket glass retrofit tops is annoying, but worth it when you factor in the positives. The limited view with the smaller window is quickly forgotten in a day or few. I can however imagine if I drove a 986 with the larger plastic window I would love the better view. So I just won't drive such a car. That is why I refuse to drive a Boxster S also!
ddb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 08:04 AM   #13
Opposed to Subie Burble
 
Overdrive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Central CT
Posts: 1,197
Garage
Sasha, I was in your shoes (as I'm sure you know) not too long ago this past Spring/Summer. Here's what I think of the glass top I got from Robbins:

I never got the opportunity to put the top in service position prior to my original top's window cracking, so I can't complain about the engine access. I was still able to change my air filter and MAF with little contortion involved on my part.

I can see where visibility would be an issue for those of average and above average height. I'm not tall (at least I don't feel I am at 5' 7"), and I have my seat lowered to its lowest point, so for me I didn't lose much visibility, and when the top is down obviously it's a non-issue. I do find myself ducking my head a little bit sometimes if I want to look farther (back) down the road, but I can just as easily use a side view mirror to see that far back and have been developing that habit more. My old top's window was foggy, so at best I saw glowing orbs and general vehicle shapes in my mirror with the top up, and forget seeing anything but droplets if there was condensation on it or it was raining, so even if the glass is smaller, to me a clear view out the back (that's easy to clean) was welcome. Also, my sister, who has a '99 and is about 5'3", can see perfectly out the glass window on my car, so she does not have an issue with it at all and wants to get a glass top to replace her plastic when the time comes.

Defroster = WIN...and it plugs right into the OEM connection. Just make sure that whoever does the job for you routes the wiring in such a way that it does not get pinched, trapped, or pulled on by the top when it is in motion or when you have to go about accessing the engine bay. It can have a lot of extra slack.

My true preference would have been to sew in a new window (not as easy as it seems, especially if you live in a place where the weather can be bad, you want to be sure your top is sealed), or drop in the top and roof frame of an 03 or 04 glass-windowed car, but to go that route I would have also have to change microswitches and there was some more internal work involved. The later model OEM top would have been ideal, but I needed a rather immediate solution, and the Robbins glass replacement became it, especially when the insurance got involved.

As a last note, yes the top will not close or open as easily at first, but if you can leave the car out in some warm sun for a few days and cycle the top a few times it should stretch itself out fairly quickly and pretty much operate like it used to.

One warning with the Robbins version of the top: there are these two little straps, and I'll have to try and supply a picture of them. They're small elastic straps that get pinned into a part of the top frame. Their purpose is to try to eliminate the top not dropping into the seal channels like it's supposed to. These straps may take a while to stretch out...they were very tightly stretched when I got mine done, and they're held in with these sort of cheap plastic fasteners, but your results may vary. Just keep an eye on them, and check that the top is in the channels when you put it back up. I always had to do this with my original top so I was already in the habit, and with the new top it has only come out of the channel once.

My opinion, if there is someone local to you with a glass window replacement, check it out and see what you think of it. I recommend it, but I also feel you should weigh all of your options and make the best choice for yourself. If you have any specific questions feel free to PM me, and I will also try to put those pictures up of that strap in another reply to this thread.

__________________
-O/D

1997 Arctic Silver Boxster, 5-spd
IMSR + RMS
Robbins glass window top
Overdrive is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 09:41 AM   #14
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Redmond, Wa
Posts: 369
Thanks everyone for the good information!

I called the shop this morning and ordered a GAHH glass top, it should be here next week.

I'll post my review of "how to live with smaller window" after it gets installed.


Thanks
Sasha
sasha055 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 10:01 AM   #15
Registered User
 
Perfectlap's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 8,709
what's the total damage? These figures seem to vary greatly by location.
__________________
GT3 Recaro Seats - Boxster Red
GT3 Aero / Carrera 18" 5 spoke / Potenza RE-11
Fabspeed Headers & Noise Maker
BORN: March 2000 - FINLAND
IMS#1 REPLACED: April 2010 - NEW JERSEY -- LNE DUAL ROW
Perfectlap is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 01:48 PM   #16
Registered User
 
John99Boxster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Wilmington, NC
Posts: 229
Garage
Sasha...my 2 cents.....Glass is nice. No visibility problems.
__________________
1999 Boxster
Ocean Blue Metallic/Savannah Beige | Tiptronic | Custom Rear Spoiler | 17" Turbo twist | Red Brembo Calipers | GAHH Top w/Glass Window | Tinted Windows | Cruise Control | Leather Interior | Heated Seats | Color Wheel Caps | Traction Control | Debadged
John99Boxster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 01:53 PM   #17
Registered User
 
John99Boxster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Wilmington, NC
Posts: 229
Garage
Forgive me if I am "Hijacking" your thread but the issue of a rear defroster caught my attention. I bought the car used and the window has the "male" connectors on it but I can not find the wiring with the female receptacles .

Anyone know where I should look or tell me how to create the connection?
__________________
1999 Boxster
Ocean Blue Metallic/Savannah Beige | Tiptronic | Custom Rear Spoiler | 17" Turbo twist | Red Brembo Calipers | GAHH Top w/Glass Window | Tinted Windows | Cruise Control | Leather Interior | Heated Seats | Color Wheel Caps | Traction Control | Debadged
John99Boxster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 01:58 PM   #18
Registered User
 
DenverSteve's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Denver/Winter Park, CO USA
Posts: 600
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZang View Post
You will get very soon get used to the smaller window and not having to "karate chop" the window: priceless
Chris, Who does this? I've hear references about the "chop" for years but have neither seen it done, nor done it. I'm on my 4th Porsche and second Boxster (3 of 4 have been convertibles) and I've never contemplated or performed any manual manipulation when lowering my top at a stop light or in the garage. Where does this come from?
__________________
Denver Steve
Carrera, Cabriolet, 6-Speed, Black/Tan
DenverSteve is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 01:58 PM   #19
Opposed to Subie Burble
 
Overdrive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Central CT
Posts: 1,197
Garage
I believe it's in the vicinity of the bottom of the driver's side roll hoop toward the outside (closer to the door). It's a small rectangular cutout in that area where the connector plugs in. The male end should plug right into that receptacle.
__________________
-O/D

1997 Arctic Silver Boxster, 5-spd
IMSR + RMS
Robbins glass window top
Overdrive is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-14-2011, 02:05 PM   #20
Opposed to Subie Burble
 
Overdrive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Central CT
Posts: 1,197
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by DenverSteve
Chris, Who does this? I've hear references about the "chop" for years but have neither seen it done, nor done it. I'm on my 4th Porsche and second Boxster (3 of 4 have been convertibles) and I've never contemplated or performed any manual manipulation when lowering my top at a stop light or in the garage. Where does this come from?
people who don't want that wrinkle/crease/pinch that can happen in the central portion of their top's rear window. It happens to pretty much every top's plastic window, so they chop the plastic so that it has a completely smooth curve to it for the remainder of the top cycling. The colder the weather is, the longer it takes for this crease/wrinkle to work itself back out. Some don't care, some do. I believe it's more important for situations where the top is in the lowered position for a prolonged period of time, such as when people use a hardtop. Since that tends to happen in places where the weather is colder, there's more strain put on the vinyl when it isn't stored nice and flat.

If I ever dropped the top on the street I didn't bother chopping, but if I was in a lot or my own driveway, I did hop out and do the chop more often than not.

__________________
-O/D

1997 Arctic Silver Boxster, 5-spd
IMSR + RMS
Robbins glass window top
Overdrive is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On




All times are GMT -8. The time now is 04:41 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2018 Pelican Parts, LLC - Posts may be archived for display on the Pelican Parts Website -    DMCA Registered Agent Contact Page