Hardtop Plate Installation ?? - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-09-2019, 08:08 AM Thread Starter
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Hardtop Plate Installation ??

So, the S2 Spider is back from the paint shop, and re-assembly has begun.

One element that has me puzzled is the 2 chrome finishers ahead of the boot lid, onto which a hardtop would fit (but no hardtop in my case.)

The car came back with just 4 bare holes in the decklid. So how in hell do these plates fasten in place ? There is nothing to tap into, and no access to the underside of the decklid that I can see, so I can't nut and bolt them.

It's been 8 months since the car went away to be painted, so my memory is fading. Was there some sort of tapping plate on the underside, that has now fallen into the body cavity ?? There must have been something substantial, as the hardtop used the same mounting points.

I am inclined to fit Rivnuts in the 4 holes, but before I do, would like to know how they were fitted originally.

The piece in question is shown below.
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1977 Spider 2000
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-09-2019, 08:26 AM
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Not sure if its a plate containing two threads or two separate captive nuts. And yes sturdy things. Under the chrome strip above is also a rubber gasket. The screws are chromed philips jobs, not flat, slightly domed.

I cannot imagine how it disappeared just by repainting the car, though...maybe it just looks like holes because some filler got into them (comes when people do repaints and don't thread in an old screw into any bare threads!)

Dom - Alfa Spider 1990 S4 - formerly: Alfa 101 Sprint, 2600 Sprint, Montreal - family classics: Jensen Interceptor II, '58 Hooper RR Silver Cloud I, Shadow II, '60 Corvette.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-09-2019, 08:29 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks. I was wondering if they fell away as I removed the plates prior to paint, and I just forgot about them. No way you could just tap into the decklid, the sheet metal is too thin to hold a thread.
So it looks like Rivnuts are the way to go. I still have the oval head stainless machine screws that secured them.

The holes remaining in decklid are clean and uniform in size, and look totally original.

The rubber gaskets were originally fitted ?

Chris
1977 Spider 2000
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-09-2019, 10:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garwood1 View Post
Thanks. I was wondering if they fell away as I removed the plates prior to paint, and I just forgot about them. No way you could just tap into the decklid, the sheet metal is too thin to hold a thread.
So it looks like Rivnuts are the way to go. I still have the oval head stainless machine screws that secured them.

The holes remaining in decklid are clean and uniform in size, and look totally original.

The rubber gaskets were originally fitted ?


Rubber gaskets in the shape of those chrome pieces were fitted.


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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-10-2019, 04:28 AM
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they couldn't have fallen away when you unscrewed the plates before the repaint(I know alfas rust, but still!)

(unless all the metal in that area was cut out, they won't have gone anywhere!)

Chris, got a photo of what you have presently?

Dom - Alfa Spider 1990 S4 - formerly: Alfa 101 Sprint, 2600 Sprint, Montreal - family classics: Jensen Interceptor II, '58 Hooper RR Silver Cloud I, Shadow II, '60 Corvette.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-10-2019, 06:41 AM
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It would not have been a plate. Those plates are typically installed for things that need to be adjusted, such as a door or engine hood. Given that these are fixed, I think they would have been a welded nut.

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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 01:16 AM Thread Starter
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Just 4 nice clean holes...
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Chris
1977 Spider 2000
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 01:36 AM
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This may sound strange, but what about some type of molly bolt situation? You could probably even take a piece of flat stock, drill and tap the appropriate hole size, use some fast set epoxy to place your own backing plate.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 01:49 AM
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can you get under there without dismantling half the car?

If so, maybe just fabricate a loose plate, drill two holes in it and weld 2 nuts underneath the plate.

Once it is screwed on you only ever undo one screw to attach the hardtop hook....that is, if you ever want to mount the hardtop.
The second screw will hold the plate in place.

Rivnuts would work, depending how proud they sit (you want the chrome finisher to sit flush on the paint, otherwise it'll look naff and won't be waterproof)

edit....
errr!
What SkiBum just said

Dom - Alfa Spider 1990 S4 - formerly: Alfa 101 Sprint, 2600 Sprint, Montreal - family classics: Jensen Interceptor II, '58 Hooper RR Silver Cloud I, Shadow II, '60 Corvette.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 01:57 AM Thread Starter
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There does not seem to be any access beneath this deck area.
The car had corrosion around the rim of the cockpit (where the studs for mounting the soft top reside), and this piece was replaced during paintwork. I suspect what happened is that he replaced this ENTIRE piece (and not just the curved rim), and in doing so, I lost the weld nuts or whatever was under there.
I am going the Rivnut route, I think, with black caulk cord beneath the chrome part, to seal it from water ingress.
Thanks for everyone's input.

Chris
1977 Spider 2000
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 02:08 AM
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Since I was not familiar with a "rivnut" I had to look it up and watched a short vid on installation. That sure does seem like a simple solution, hopefully you can find a size that accepts the original screw, or maybe retap the rivnut to the appropriate size and thread pitch...
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 04:42 AM
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Quote:
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Since I was not familiar with a "rivnut" I had to look it up and watched a short vid on installation. That sure does seem like a simple solution, hopefully you can find a size that accepts the original screw, or maybe retap the rivnut to the appropriate size and thread pitch...
Rivnuts are available in metric.

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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 06:59 AM
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Classic Alfa in UK offers the gaskets.

Worth $10 and shipping to avoid scratching your beautiful paint


https://classicalfa.com/rb068-hardto...iders-1970-93/


https://classicalfa.com/rb069-hardto...iders-1970-93/

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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-08-2019, 07:52 PM
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Chris, did you figure this out? I have sort of the same problem, the cage nuts are spinning so I can't unscrew the screws and will probably need to drill them out leaving me in the same boat. No access from within the trunk, shock cover or wheel well. I think you could probably drill straight down if you had a long enough bit and put some nuts in the wheel well.

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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 07-09-2019, 03:06 AM Thread Starter
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I ended up using the Rivnut solution; it worked a treat. Just don't over torque the screws when installing these plates. I skipped the rubber gaskets, and used a strip of black caulk cord beneath each plate to keep the water out.

I think if you intend to fit a hardtop to these plates, a more substantial solution will be required !

Chris
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