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Old 05-17-2016, 10:10 AM   #1
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Manual roof downgrade

The Spyder is too expensive.
The Spyder conversion kit is too expensive.
The (hard top) Cayman is too expensive.

Has anyone removed the convertible mechanism, (saved the weight), and developed a manual-only option for the Boxster roof?
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Old 05-17-2016, 10:38 AM   #2
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I don't see why you couldn't remove the motor, cables, transmission, and brackets and just operate the top manually. It would probably save 10+ lbs.
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Old 05-17-2016, 11:12 AM   #3
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operate the top manually. It would probably save 10+ lbs.
I haven't found a video on how to manually raise a boxster roof but this writeup makes it appear that it's not feasable on a day in day out basis. I know that on a 996 it's a tedious process. I take it there's no "downgrade kit"...?

(see post #10):
http://www.renntech.org/forums/topic/662-how-to-manually-lowering-convertible-top/

As far as weight, I figured it'd be a lot more than just 10lbs, don't convertibles in general weigh between 100-200lbs more than their coupe counterparts?
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Old 05-17-2016, 11:26 AM   #4
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Sassmatt72, Woody and probably a few others now have modified a trunk latch to hold the clam-shell down. I had the transmissions removed on my first Boxster and had planned to replace them. It was so quick and easy to do the top manually, I never bothered.

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...
I also removed the top motor and transmissions. An idea taken from sassmatt72 was to use a trunk latch to keep the clam shell from rattling. I went with it and have gotten to this point before I ran out of time. I used the motor mounting bracket and only need to weld a brace.
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Old 05-17-2016, 04:47 PM   #5
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it's more lie 15 lbs...lol
easy as pie, and the rear latch is simple to do as well...
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Old 05-18-2016, 06:38 PM   #6
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I'm so glad I modified mine and got rid of the motor and transmissions. It is real easy to modify and real easy to live with. I can open and close mine in five seconds.
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Old 05-18-2016, 07:23 PM   #7
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ANYTHING that makes a Porsche simpler, more reliable,lighter and more reliable should be a golden DIY write-up project ?
Anyone going to improve on Woody's great start?
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Old 05-18-2016, 07:43 PM   #8
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I finished mine. The pic 78F350 shared was during mockup. Here's the final.


The release cable is just the right length and sits right behind the driver. I'll take some more pics tomorrow.
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Old 05-18-2016, 07:48 PM   #9
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Brilliant - he saves weight,complexity and the risk of a top failure.
And this is a guy who has an endless source of spare parts to repair his top mechanism. There must be a reason he does a downgrade to a manual system !
Thanks for sharing Woody.
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Old 05-18-2016, 07:53 PM   #10
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LOL Thanks! My main goal at the time was strictly to lose weight. I love it so much I'd probably do it to a boxster I wasn't putting on a diet.
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Old 05-19-2016, 02:37 AM   #11
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How much weight does it save (what parts are removed) ? Does the aluminum 987 engine cover save much also.?
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Old 05-19-2016, 05:19 AM   #12
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The aluminum cover is a lbs or two less than the 986 cover. I didn't weigh just the vert parts separately but Matt says 15lbs. I removed the motor, cables, transmissions, pushrods and associated hardware. I'm probably forgetting something else too. Here's a pic of my first round at lightning up my box

I go into more detail about my boxster on this thread
Woody's build thread
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Old 05-19-2016, 08:19 PM   #13
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Curious, do you notice a sound difference between 987 aluminum engine cover vs 986 plastic/metal engine cover? I believe the 986 would be negligibly quieter.
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Old 05-21-2016, 05:57 AM   #14
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Curious, do you notice a sound difference between 987 aluminum engine cover vs 986 plastic/metal engine cover? I believe the 986 would be negligibly quieter.
I didn't notice any difference when it was on the 987. I can't judge it on my box because I've removed all the insulation from the carpets and engine compartment area.

This is the only thing I think left to share about this mod. I tuck the cable under the carpet hold down clips.

And have the pull part right behind my left shoulder.
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Old 05-21-2016, 07:31 AM   #15
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Great mod. I've owned two Miatas and loved the speed with which I could get the top up or down while seated (in the case of 'down' I could do it with one hand when moving slowly).

I've always thought the Porsche system was slow and doesn't exactly present as robust. I agree that anything that can simplify and remove weight is awesome.

I don't see your A/C system in that pile of parts. That would be a bunch more weight off.
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Old 05-21-2016, 09:16 AM   #16
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We need our AC down here. That's some dedication to live without AC and I'm too old and cranky to do that anymore. 😉
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Old 05-21-2016, 09:20 AM   #17
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I'd say living on the 'wet' coast Flaps needs a speedy working drop top more than he needs the A/C system.
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Old 05-25-2016, 05:50 AM   #18
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After considerable research I've determined that at some point the roof/motor will fail.
When any part fails, an upgraded roof/motor at $4k is the solution.
Definitely more than I'd want to spend.

If I found a Boxster with a hard top, took out the roof/motor and just drove with the hard top, my concern is that the hard top is set into the grooves of the body so it's not permanently affixed like a coupe roof. Therefore if it gets hit hard enough from the side, it can "slide" into the occupants. If it were a rollover scenario, this "sliding across" effect makes would end up causing greater damage that not having the hard top
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Old 04-25-2017, 03:12 PM   #19
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Simple solution?

Hi all, enjoying the Forum very much. '98 is 4 weeks new and the top is stuck closed. I know this is just the beginning so I like the idea of a manual top. A local Porsche guy says remove the 19mm bolts and the top is manual. I'm getting to the diagrams for more detail but I'm interested in your experience. Is it that easy?

Thanks for the guidance.
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Old 04-25-2017, 04:11 PM   #20
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It can be that easy, or harder in increments, depending on how much stuff you want to remove.



The unrestrained clamshell may rise up a little (less than an inch) at speed, but isn't going to go anywhere.
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