Thanks for all the input. I wrote Centerline to ask their opinion and it was consistent with what you are saying. See Below.
New seals that causing the doors and other panels to be hard to close is pretty common on these cars. The alternative, unfortunately as we’ve seen with some other reproduction seals, is a seal that allows easy closing but doesn’t actually seal out water or wind.
What we recommend is the following:
1) Soak the seal in silicone lubricant (liquid) which will soften the seal.
2) Heat the seal with a hair dryer or heat gun on low, which will also soften the seal. Once it is good and hot, go around and make sure it is fully seated again.
3) Once you get the trunk to close, leave the car sitting out in the sun for a day or two which will allow the seal to compress enough that you should be able to use the trunk after that.
I hope this helps.
I'm in Seattle, so there's no leaving the car in the sun until next summer, so I'll just silicone, hair dry and compress it....
Thanks again for everyone's input.
It goes in tomorrow for the new top, which is the finishing touch in the 11 year bringing back from the dead!!! Lots of pictures to follow....