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Old 10-01-2011, 08:39 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Thumbs up installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

i removed the factory latch system in the factory hardtop in exchange for the rennetal brackets and hardware. What a difference! no more rattle and noises the car feels like a coupe.

I highly recommend this modification to those cars with hardtop
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Old 10-01-2011, 08:51 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

I just installed the side ones a few days back and love the difference it made.
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Old 10-01-2011, 09:30 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

I havnt gotten around to installing the sides, but I really need to. The hardtop rattles like a MOFO
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Old 10-01-2011, 09:36 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

It took me some time to realize that the rattling was in deed from the hardtop cant wait to purchase these
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Old 10-01-2011, 09:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

I went from brackets to latches and the hardtop does rattle a lot more but I want to be able to take it off easily if I want to. Even though in six months I have only taken it off once
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Old 10-01-2011, 10:13 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

I want to add that in order to have a rattle free hardtop you must adjust the rear locking (external) system. to do that you must remove the chrome metal caps and adjust the bolts in order to lock the hardtop properly to the car.
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Old 10-01-2011, 10:55 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

for some reason the philips head screws that you are supposed to take out to adjust the rear frankengrabber things are so damn tight. I have tried loosening them on several occasions but I am afraid to strip the heads...
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Old 10-02-2011, 12:08 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

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Originally Posted by circuitmstr View Post
for some reason the philips head screws that you are supposed to take out to adjust the rear frankengrabber things are so damn tight. I have tried loosening them on several occasions but I am afraid to strip the heads...
Same here. It took me a bit to get them loose. WD40 worked really well getting them to come free, just had to keep it from getting all over the paint

But on topic, the Rennenmetal brackets are one of the best cheap purchases i've made. Once I got it bolted down exactly how I wanted it, haven't had a single noticeable rattle or any problems!
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Old 10-02-2011, 02:52 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

Mine were suppose to be here 2 weeks ago. Sigh.
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Old 10-02-2011, 03:38 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

you need to adjust the rear latching system in order to have the hardtop six mounting points (two rear mounting points) attached accordingly. Try using WD-40 and hammer the bolts when you remove them. Also use a heat gun.
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Old 10-02-2011, 08:47 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

Mine should be coming in sometime soon
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Old 10-02-2011, 09:08 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

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Mine were suppose to be here 2 weeks ago. Sigh.
when i got new side brackets from rennenmetal, i didn't choose the "priority" option from their shipping drop down menu...
this was a "mistake" that extended my wait time from 2-3 days to about 3 weeks.
i was really surprised with how long parcel took.
fuck that shit.

back to the topic at hand, i love my brackets. i've never had latches, just the brackets so i can't speak on the difference, but i don't drive a convertible anymore...
i have a coupe. it's awesome.

for added security, i also got in on the group buy that garagestar had not too long ago for security bolts instead of using hex hardware.
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Old 10-02-2011, 09:11 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

Weird, I ordered mine last sat and got them this past friday. Of course my hardtops front latches are held on with stupid red loctite so I have to deal with that before I get to put these on.
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Old 10-04-2011, 03:04 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

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Originally Posted by Hyper View Post
i removed the factory latch system in the factory hardtop in exchange for the rennetal brackets and hardware. What a difference! no more rattle and noises the car feels like a coupe.

I highly recommend this modification to those cars with hardtop
Agreed. The brackets are awesome... I'd never install latches on a hardtop.

Mike
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Old 10-04-2011, 05:33 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

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for some reason the philips head screws that you are supposed to take out to adjust the rear frankengrabber things are so damn tight. I have tried loosening them on several occasions but I am afraid to strip the heads...

Try using a heat gun!
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Old 10-04-2011, 05:34 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

These are next on my list of small purchases.
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Old 10-04-2011, 05:34 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

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Weird, I ordered mine last sat and got them this past friday. Of course my hardtops front latches are held on with stupid red loctite so I have to deal with that before I get to put these on.
Use a heat gun, the red loctite will liquify. Slightly hammer the phillips screws and remove. It should be piece of cake.
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Old 10-04-2011, 05:57 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

I installed my side brackets a couple weeks ago.

For the record the OEM brackets will work with SNUGTop Brand hardtops, Need to modify 1 hole and only use 4 of the 5 holes on the side though......No more rattles!
Have not gotten around to modifying the front brackets yet, so not sure what is involved.
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Old 10-04-2011, 06:21 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

I got mine and installed them a little over a week ago and love them... After finally getting the top aligned properly. The top front leading edge was bulging up above the windshield bulkhead causing much wind noise.

Went to my friend's place a few days ago, we took the top off, totally removed the soft top and retro-fitted seat belt brace (one side wasn't even bolted down), put the hardtop back on and kept the bolts loose on the external latches until we had all of the Spec Miata brackets and top completely installed, then tightened up the external latches and called it a day.

No more wind noise, no more rattles, no more creaks. Just nice and quiet. I keep forgetting to take pics of all the new stainless button head hardware I used to secure them, but here they are the day I initially installed them...



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Old 10-05-2011, 08:12 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

Here's a couple pics I took today on the side of the highway of the stainless hardware. LOL



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Old 10-06-2011, 03:22 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

chops in order to have the whole thing installed properly you need to remove the external chrome metal caps where the hardtop first locks to the car and adjust the bolts on each side. If you don't do this you won't feel the difference as much as I feel it. Also for the record, installing a rollbar makes a ton of difference in the chassis.

Rollbar + hardtop + rennmetal hardtop brackets = WIN
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Old 10-06-2011, 03:24 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

Do you mean where the franks hook in?
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Old 10-06-2011, 03:26 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

I hope mine shows up in the mail tomorrow. Or I will be one sad/mad bear.
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Old 10-06-2011, 03:29 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

I just installed mine today. Got 3 brackets in, 1 bracket had stripped screws
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Old 10-06-2011, 03:31 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

I think there's a club for that. I had a similar issue, fuckin red loctite ftl.
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Old 10-06-2011, 03:55 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

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Do you mean where the franks hook in?
English is my second language. Yes!
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Old 10-08-2011, 06:21 AM   #27 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

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I just installed mine today. Got 3 brackets in, 1 bracket had stripped screws
Had the same problem. Left the front latches in until I can buy a torch and left handed drill bit. Going the way of security bolts as well.
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Old 10-08-2011, 08:24 AM   #28 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

I got a mini torch and it helped a little bit, but I guess I didn't heat it up enough and the heads broke off of the screws. So now I'm screwed, got 3 broke studs in the top

ughh
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Old 10-08-2011, 08:40 AM   #29 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

Heat em up again and use a left handed drill bit to back em out. Worked when I snapped the heads off the bolts on the side plates from over torque-ing

Last edited by furiousbob; 10-08-2011 at 10:12 AM.
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Old 10-08-2011, 09:47 AM   #30 (permalink)
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Default Re: installed hardtop brackets. What a difference!

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I got a mini torch and it helped a little bit, but I guess I didn't heat it up enough and the heads broke off of the screws. So now I'm screwed, got 3 broke studs in the top

ughh
if you strip the bolt you can modify them to adapt to flat screwdriver. , Heat Hammer them and use visor grip.
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