Convertible Care?

Discussion in 'Viper Detailing Tips & Tricks' started by CitySnake, Aug 6, 2008.

  1. CitySnake

    CitySnake Enthusiast

    Posts:
    7,116
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2001
    Location:
    Manhattan, USA
    Is there any product that we should be using on a new gen 3 convertible top (exterior) to maintain it's new look and/or water resistance? I was planning on dousing it with Scotch Guard, but I think that's more for me than the top.
     
  2. chimazo

    chimazo Enthusiast

    Posts:
    421
    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    Location:
    Clarksburg, MD
  3. CitySnake

    CitySnake Enthusiast

    Posts:
    7,116
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2001
    Location:
    Manhattan, USA
    Excellent! Thank you. :2tu:

    So to my surprise, the Viper is listed as a cloth top. Do you think this is a reference to the Gen 2 removable tops or the gen 3 tops...or both?

    Dang new car requires me learn everything all over again.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2008
  4. mike & juli

    mike & juli Enthusiast

    Posts:
    11,715
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    In the four years we had our '05, Scott, we never put anything on the vert top....I believe it's water-resistant? I know the water repelled off the roof, didn't soak in.
    ~~juli
     
  5. CitySnake

    CitySnake Enthusiast

    Posts:
    7,116
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2001
    Location:
    Manhattan, USA
    I have no doubt it's water proof, but since (financially) I will have to keep this car forever ;) I want to insure that, over time, it will remain that way. Tops tend to "dry out" over the course of time. More accurately, the convertible tops made 10-20 years ago would dry out over time. I'm guessing the materials used now last far longer, but it doesn't take much to treat the fabric or vinyl (what the heck is it?) with some product every 6 months or so. It's also good for the economy for me to spend a few more $ on unnecessary car products. :D
     
  6. Luna C

    Luna C Viper Owner

    Posts:
    45
    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2007
    Location:
    Alpharetta, GA
    Autogeek.net and Autopia.org both have excellent resources on care and maintenance. Apparently Haartz is the major manufacturer of the majority of convertible tops. Autogeek.net has a link to the Haartz site that lists the specific top and what they recommend. (on the autogeek site select convertible top care then scroll to the bottom and there in a link to types of convertible top.


    Peace
     
  7. mike & juli

    mike & juli Enthusiast

    Posts:
    11,715
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    LOL...I hear ya! And, yes, we are keeping this car seemingly forever too! I've gotta look up what the vert top is made of, I'm not sure either. I just know that we drove endlessly in the rain many times, and the vert top was absolutely fine for 4 years. Have a BLAST in your beautiful beast, Scott~!
    We thoroughly enjoyed a 'spirited' drive last night, to rain now all week...beautiful shifts~! ~juli
     
  8. mike & juli

    mike & juli Enthusiast

    Posts:
    11,715
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    Thank You Luna...I will utilize that site! ~juli
     
  9. CitySnake

    CitySnake Enthusiast

    Posts:
    7,116
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2001
    Location:
    Manhattan, USA
    Thanks Luna. Yep, that's the second website that confirms our top is "fabric" rather than vinyl.

    FYI, J.C. Whitney sells RaggTopp Fabric Protector for $18.99.


    From the top manufacturer's website:

    Cloth Top Cleaning

    CAMBRIA®, STAYFAST®, TWILLFAST®, SONNENLAND®
    Solution Dyed Acrylic Topping Fabric

    Ordering Information at bottom of page

    Although the fabric does not promote mildew growth by itself, mildew may develop on dirt and other foreign substances that are not removed. This is especially true in warm, humid, dark environments. A program of keeping the fabric clean through regular washings, BEFORE it gets dirty, will enhance the life and beauty of the acrylic and make successive cleaning easier.

    Most automatic car washes will not harm cloth top fabrics. Washes with water jets and hanging cloths provide a more gentle cleaning action. Those using heavy barrel brushes could damage the top material. Haartz recommends hand washing.

    The Haartz Corporation recommends using RAGGTOPP™ Cleaner and RAGGTOPP™ Protectant (available from Wolfsteins Pro-Series at tel: 800-377-4700, fax: 770-395-1353, e-mail: [email protected]).

    Hand washing in shade or partial shade, not direct sunlight, is best. DO NOT USE DETERGENT. Bird and tree droppings, as well as other loose particle soils, should be removed immediately. Vacuum with a brush attachment and rinse thoroughly with water to remove loose particle soils. This will also prevent the soils from being redeposited during the cleaning process. Once the fabric has been rinsed thoroughly, spray RAGGTOPP™ Cleaner evenly over the entire surface while still wet. Allow the cleaner to soak for 10 to 20 minutes and then scrub lightly with a soft nylon brush or terry cloth rag. Rinse thoroughly, preferably until no remaining soap foam is observed. Additional cleanings may be required. It is best to determine the need for additional cleanings after the fabric has dried completely.

    Washing with soap (ie. Ivory or Lux) and warm water is a safe alternative to RAGGTOPP™ Cleaner, but not as effective.

    For more stubborn cases, mix a solution of no more than 1/2 cup (4oz.) bleach and 1/4 cup (2oz.) RAGGTOPP™ Cleaner per gallon of water, soak for approximately 20 minutes and scrub lightly as indicated above. (Excessive soaking with the bleach solution can deteriorate seam threads.) Rinse thoroughly to prevent streaking on painted and chrome surfaces. Several cleanings may be necessary.

    Once dry, cleaning must be followed by re-water repelling with RAGGTOPP™ Protectant. (This product does not contain CFC's and therefore, is not harmful to the environment.) Failure to apply will result in rapid resoiling of the unprotected fabric.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2008
  10. mike & juli

    mike & juli Enthusiast

    Posts:
    11,715
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    Good to know Scott...didn't wanna just promote a certain vendor here...! ~juli
     
  11. Peter Nielsen

    Peter Nielsen Viper Owner

    Posts:
    219
    Joined:
    May 23, 2006
    Location:
    Wilmington, NC
    At the factory, Dodge treats the top with a Daimler-Chrysler/Dodge spray-on product that is essentially the same as the RaggTop Fabric Protectant.

    Depending on how often you wash, the factory treatment may last 6 months or many years.

    Beware that if you need to use the RaggTop Fabric Cleaner (or any other cleaner/soap) on the top, it may wash away the factory treatment and you will need to re-apply the RaggTop Fabric Protectant.

    As long as the water repells off the top (stays as water drops) and don't soak into the top, everything is good. If not, I'd recommend re-applying fabric protectant...

    Four years?! That's great! I washed off the factory treatment on my '06 way too early, and Raggtop didn't seem to be as durable. With the '08 I will avoid any soap on the top until it is absolutely necessary...

    Peter
     
  12. Newport Viper

    Newport Viper Viper Owner

    Posts:
    4,657
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2000
    Location:
    Newport Coast, CA
  13. 29OUTLAW

    29OUTLAW Viper Owner

    Age:
    58
    Posts:
    767
    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2004
    Location:
    Solomons Island, Md.
  14. CitySnake

    CitySnake Enthusiast

    Posts:
    7,116
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2001
    Location:
    Manhattan, USA
    Thanks Peter.

    Nonetheless, I've asked around and no one is aware of a factory treatment for the top. Regardless, is there ary reason not to use additional Ragg Topp Protectant right away?
     
  15. mike & juli

    mike & juli Enthusiast

    Posts:
    11,715
    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2005
    Location:
    Upstate NY
    All I know from our experience with the '05 vert is that we NEVER washed the top at all...got the car in Oct. '04 to June '08...top stayed water-proof (water beads). We are not treating our '08 either, as we won't wash it. Just my .02 for what it's worth. Drove home in the rain from Tatortoga, so ViperTony, BlackMamba & BlueQuadCab can vouch for the top if they indeed saw the water beading on it when we all stopped for dinner. ~juli
     
  16. ViperTony

    ViperTony Enthusiast

    Posts:
    7,555
    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2006
  17. Nader

    Nader Viper Owner

    Posts:
    3,386
    Joined:
    May 20, 2005
    Location:
    New York
    I have used RaggTopp and highly recommend it. The kit includes a cleaner and sealer. The top beads like a fresh coat of wax. I am due to do another coat since it has been two years since I did it las and it still looks like new.

     

Share This Page