Datsun Roadster Parts from Rallye Enterprises, Ltd.

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SOFTOP INFO
REPRODUCTION SOFTOPS
Unless specified otherwise, these are manufactured by Robbins. They are manufactured to be of the highest quality possible. We have been using Robbins since 1973 when my 1st roadster needed a top. As a user Robbins' products have been great, and we've had a happy and trouble free 36 years selling them and 39 years using them. These do not come with a rear bar installed, you can use your old one, or make one, or purchase a used one from us. They come with the necessary snaps and grommets, you should also order a new softop weatherstrip if you don't have one already. You should order any missing/damaged twistys and postys as well.

WHAT FITS WHAT...65-67.5
The "65-67" tops we use are actually the 67.5 top. If your top installer finds one of the chalk numbers we haven't managed to rub off he may refuse to install the top. He of course doesn't want to ruin a top trying to put it on the wrong car. All I can say is that the tops we sell as the 65-67.5 tops fit ALL 65-67.5 cars, no matter what your installer or even the top manufacturer says. I haven't met anyone with a 65-67 that haven't appreciated the improvement in the 67.5 top. The 67.5s added a flap that hides the side framing over your head and attempts at softening the blow for the taller folks who participate in "spirited" driving.

WHAT FITS WHAT...68-70
At the beginning of 1969 production (SPL 24002 and SRL 07002) Nissan changed the softop shape to "give it a finer appearance." Unfortunately in 42-44 years a LOT of frames have been put on different year cars. The entire top frame and top material is interchangeable among all 68-70 cars; but if you are looking to just change the material you need to know if you have a 1968 frame or a 1969-1970 frame. The 1970 cars also went with a differently designed front bow trim but otherwise appears identical to the 1969 version. Please see "What Year is Your Top Frame" for pics and further info.

MATERIAL TEXTURE
Softop material, which is vinyl covered canvas, comes in a "smooth grain" (pinpoint) style; like the original 68-70 tops did. When Nissan began using the vinyl and canvas combination as a more durable and economical solution to previous materials in 1968; they went with the "pinpoint" style. It looks smooth unless you look VERY close, then you can see the dots.

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Datsun Roadster Softop Material

PINPOINT MATERIAL (enlarged picture)


68 and 69-70 SOFTOP "RAIN GUTTER" DESIGNS: INFO, OPINIONS AND COMPLETE NONSENSE...

Although these have been historically swapped back and forth with no regard to the frame year; you will get a better fit if you use the correct top on the matching frame. Your top installer may also freak out if he sees you are installing the other top; and refuse to proceed. It is understandable; they don't want to get stuck with a top they don't think is correct after the start installing it so it can't be returned.

The problem is that frames come OFF the car and a LOT of cars have had their frames misplaced and/or switched with other frames over the years. Top manufacturers love to rattle on about using the "correct" top with the "correct" frame but they have no idea what that frame really is or how to tell them apart; they only go off of the year or MAYBE the vin and ASSUME nothing has been changed; which after 45 years is nuts. Robbins; the largest manufacturer has had multiple different descriptions of what top fits what YEAR of car and they have all been WRONG; even assuming you had the original frame on the car. Like I mentioned the two styles CAN be switched and HAVE BEEN for FORTY YEARS. The type B gutter design IS though put on a top that went with a frame that has a slightly different shape; which Nissan did.

I offered to help Robbins correct their listings many years ago just to be a friend; and even after they had broken an agreement they had made with me; and was blown off; so I decided to stop trying to help; instead enjoying a chuckle everytime they altered their listings with new information that was still WRONG but wrong in a different way!

Nissan (and Robbins) modified the tops a couple of times, the most noticeable is a revision to the design of the rain gutters above the side windows on the 69-70 models. I think the early design was intended to provide extra stiffness in the sides, the gutter usually could be used to protect car when it was sitting,by running your finger around window to pop gutter out and do a pretty good job of sealing window compared a typical design. The later design abandoned this and went with a simple gutter which in most cases is too high, but does deflect a fair amount of water and is easier to use. You lose the option of flipping something over the window but don't have to think about tucking it back in before trying to open the door. (Pics).

INSTALLATION
Installation of a new softop should be performed by a professional installer. An owner installed top is almost always a disaster. I know it seems so simple. I'd compare it to surgery...all you need is a sharp instrument, right? A professional will know how tight the material should be. Too loose and it will beat itself to death, too tight and it will tear itself apart from temperature changes and being put up and down. If you care about how long your top survives, have it done right. Robbins will most likely not warrant a top against ANYTHING if it was not put on by a professional.


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