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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
One of our members has put the metal frame of the top through the canvas because he was not aware that the top HAS to be lubricated periodically. Take a few minutes today and check your's.

I lube mine twice a year but found the plastic clip on the passenger side about to fall off today when I checked it. Tightened it up and all is good now. If you remember when you read your owners manual they recommend periodic lubrication with weatherstrip lubricant (GM Part No. U.S. 3634770, in Canada 10953518) or Dielectric Silicone Grease (GM Part No. U.S. 12345579, in Canada 992887).

Save yourself a pile of money and go to your favourite auto parts store and get a tube of dielectric silicone grease. It'll cost less than $10 and you'll have it for life.

Save yourself a lot of grief and the cost of a new top by lubricating your top today. (Sounds like an infomercial...)


The pictures below should help to find where and what to lubricate. Hopefully if you have not been addressing this there hasn't been too much damage done up to this point. You really don't want to lose the top

108718


108719
 

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One of our members has put the metal frame of the top through the canvas because he was not aware that the top HAS to be lubricated periodically. Take a few minutes today and check your's.

I lube mine all the time but found the plastic clip on the passenger side about to fall off. Tightened it up and all is good now.

Save yourself a lot of grief and the cost of a new top by lubricating your top today. (Sounds like an infomercial...)

Bob: what do you lubricate with??
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Use dielectric silicone grease, you can get it at any auto parts store for less than $10 and it'll be enough to last a lifetime.

It really iS important to lube those surfaces as tops are not just expensive, they are getting harder to get.
 

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Lube what surfaces? What part of the top? Where?????
 

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On the under side of the canvas top is a rubber strip that rubs against the lower hinge and the plastic tab. This rubber must be lubricated or it will dry out and cause excessive wear on the plastic tab till the tab fails. Then the rubber covering the hinge wears through and exposes the metal inside the rubber
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yeah I knew that question was coming. There used to be a pile of pics on the site indicating where the apply the grease but all the pics are broken. I'll look some more and will take pictures myself later if need be and post them here.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
I have updated the initial post in this thread, I hope the information is of some help to the good people here.
 
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This thread was a great wake-up call for me. I lube all the obvious moving parts, but now I'm aware of all the others. I saw that lithium lube is used extensively as well. Is anyone a pro at all the appropriate lube applications, and what is perfect for each location? That would be a very informative topic to post. Enjoy your summers!
 

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Pictures! Thank you, Bob!! Now I have to pull my car cover and check.
 

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All rubber should be treated at least twice a year with lube that counters the effects of dry rot and UV damage. There are specific products for rubber you can use but a lot of us use dielectric grease. It works great and is very inexpensive. ALL rubber seals should be done. Windshield, door seals and door window seals, trunk seal and the two rubber feet that accept the top when its rotated up. We put it on as a thick layer like ointment on a burn. Let it sit overnight then wipe off the excess.

If you put the top up but don't latch it, then stand facing either door and partially fold the top up, the hinged point with the plastic tab is in the folding seal that sits across the top of the side glass when the top is up. You can articulate the top so the hinge point is at about 45 degrees. Then grab the canvas top just above the hinge point and lift it up while rotating it so the bottom seal comes to the side. That is the rubber piece you need to lubricate to prevent top damage. On the forward end of the rear hinge point you should find the plastic tab - or not if its damaged or missing. The plastic tab provides the slippery surface between the rubber window seal (the hinged portion) and the rubber weather seal on the bottom of the canvas top. Without the tab the rubber to rubber mating surface will grind off the lower rubber seal which is soft to keep water out. Molded into this lower rubber seal is a piece of metal that provides the stiffness to make a good seal at the hinged point. As the rubber wears, this metal tab is exposed and it will grab the top and eventually will destroy the top from the inside out.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
I saw that lithium lube is used extensively as well.
Lithium isn't recommended for this application. As silicone grease is both recommended by GM and is clear in appearance it's certainly what should be used in this application.

If you put the top up but don't latch it, then stand facing either door and partially fold the top up, the hinged point with the plastic tab is in the folding seal that sits across the top of the side glass when the top is up. You can articulate the top so the hinge point is at about 45 degrees. Then grab the canvas top just above the hinge point and lift it up while rotating it so the bottom seal comes to the side...
I used to access it that way Rob but found that I can easily get at it as indicated in the picture I posted. I do not need to unlatch the top from the windshield. I can tighten the Torx screw on the clip that way as well.

Other people may well have to unlatch the top and pivot it back but I haven't found it necessary any longer.

Those of us that have been around for a while are well aware of little quirks of the Kappa design such as this. I hope this helps someone prevent troubles in the future.
 
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Lithium isn't recommended for this application. As silicone grease is both recommended by GM and is clear in appearance it's certainly what should be used in this application.



I used to access it that way Rob but found that I can easily get at it as indicated in the picture I posted. I do not need to unlatch the top from the windshield. I can tighten the Torx screw on the clip that way as well.

Other people may well have to unlatch the top and pivot it back but I haven't found it necessary any longer.

Those of us that have been around for a while are well aware of little quirks of the Kappa design such as this. I hope this helps someone prevent troubles in the future.
Still greasy from last year but Just did mine again, used silicon grease. My homemade hdpe clip still good to go.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Still greasy from last year but Just did mine again, used silicon grease. My homemade hdpe clip still good to go.
That's certainly good news.

Yeah although the manual states that Dielectric Silicone Grease should be used, no need to get hung up on the dielectric part as the word dielectric simply means that it does not conduct electricity. That said, dielectric grease is generally easier to find in my experience and is sometimes called "Tune up grease".

Just using a silicone grease as you have that does not have Dielectric in it's name is perfectly acceptable.

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EDIT: I found it. But my top is different. My door seals fold into each other and there is no metal hinge that will catch. This piece slides on them. I'm more worried about the major area where it bends and there is nothing there to protect the top.
 

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I have been following this with interest, after the photos were posted I went to lube this area.
Well imagine my surprise when I found that there is no rubber on my top in this area.
I have an 06-07 change over production car, parts from both production years ended up on it.
I have the hole in the dash for the switch for traction control which I filled with a switch for the garage door opener following the post by "numbers"
Have the plan "A" weatherstripping maybe this is something that was included in the Plan "B" version?
Any how I have no wear and the plastic piece looks good.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Not sure Derf but my car is a 2008 and it DOES have a plan B top. Maybe Rob the Elder can chime in if he's aware of the issue as it pertains to the plan A top.
 

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Hey Derf, I thought I didn't have them either. They are very small, about 3/4" wide and about 2" long. And they are sewn into the top from just behind the seam of the welting that protects the top from the window.
 
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