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Help Boxster Roof problems


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Bought my first porsche a 1997 2.5 in black. Tested roof a few times before I bought it, all ok. have had it for 4 weeks now and roof has been fine. Today I went to put the roof down, the clamshell raised on one side but not really at all on the other, upon closer inspection the ball joint into the guide had popped out.

Got a friend to help lift while puting the ball joint back in, tried the roof again and nothing. there is extreme resistance on the v type bit of metal its as if it is stuck or jammed on something. we decided to loosen the bolt holding the v piece and see if it made a difference and yes it did the roof went down now but took ages and a few presses of the top up and top down. Going up was a lot easier but not like when I got it. we then decided to completely take off the bolt holding the v piecce and a plastic cover to see if we could see what was causing the resistance. Please bear in mind we had no idea what we were looking for.

Could see anything behind this apart from a silver plate that the bolt went into.

Put it all back togther done up as tight as when we undid it.

Then tested it again. this side was now 'locked stiff' the other side that was originally working still operated but we didnt want to go too far and twist damage the mech on that side. so we then slightly loosened off the side we had done up.

hey presto the roof went down and then up. thought it was all fixed went into the drivers seat and the open roof light was on so I tried to close the roof fully by pressing the button. Now nothin moves the clam shell doesnt move but you can hear the electric motor operating.

Please can someone share their wisdom with me and help fix this mess!

Many thanks in advance

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Bought my first porsche a 1997 2.5 in black. Tested roof a few times before I bought it, all ok. have had it for 4 weeks now and roof has been fine. Today I went to put the roof down, the clamshell raised on one side but not really at all on the other, upon closer inspection the ball joint into the guide had popped out.

Got a friend to help lift while puting the ball joint back in, tried the roof again and nothing. there is extreme resistance on the v type bit of metal its as if it is stuck or jammed on something. we decided to loosen the bolt holding the v piece and see if it made a difference and yes it did the roof went down now but took ages and a few presses of the top up and top down. Going up was a lot easier but not like when I got it. we then decided to completely take off the bolt holding the v piecce and a plastic cover to see if we could see what was causing the resistance. Please bear in mind we had no idea what we were looking for.

Could see anything behind this apart from a silver plate that the bolt went into.

Put it all back togther done up as tight as when we undid it.

Then tested it again. this side was now 'locked stiff' the other side that was originally working still operated but we didnt want to go too far and twist damage the mech on that side. so we then slightly loosened off the side we had done up.

hey presto the roof went down and then up. thought it was all fixed went into the drivers seat and the open roof light was on so I tried to close the roof fully by pressing the button. Now nothin moves the clam shell doesnt move but you can hear the electric motor operating.

Please can someone share their wisdom with me and help fix this mess!

Many thanks in advance

nik:

I'm assuming that by " the ball joint into the guide had popped out", you meant that the steel ball at the base of the body-colored arm that supports the clamshell at its other end is what had popped out of the black plastic slider that runs back and forth in the channel inside the rear quarter panel. (How's that for a run-on sentence? eek.gif)

Regardless, I don't think that is the complete cause of the problem.

More than likely (since you have a '97), you are experiencing the "stretched outer black vinyl sheathing cable problem". If you have the original cables in there (i.e., smooth sided, and not "cross-hatched surface), then that is even more likely.

To determine if this is what has happened, pull the upside-down u-clip upwards to remove it from the side of the electric motor.

Here is a photo of the upside-down U-clip (click on the photo to get a better view):

post-6627-023312700 1281410584_thumb.jpg

(Note that the black plastic cover of the electric motor has been removed for this photo).

The red arrow points to the U-clip, the blue arrow points to the ferrule on the end of the cable, and the white arrow shows a later version "cross-hatch" pattern cable. (The cross-hatch cables are much less likely to stretch, so if yours don't look like this, you have the early version).

Now, pull the black vinyl sheathed cable outboard to examine how much of the inner speedometer-type cable is sticking out. If you have less than 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch sticking out, then the electric motor is not driving the cable on that side. When that happens, the V-lever will not rotate and neither the canvas part of the top nor the clamshell will have any movement.

Not sure how the 19mm bolt at the center of the V-lever that you loosened would have any effect on the rotation of the V-lever, unless that somehow affected the length (or, more correctly, the position) of the inner speedometer-type cable and thus allowed the V-lever to be driven by the cable, through the transmission.

Let us know what you discover when you pull the cable out from the side of the electric motor, or better yet, post a couple of photos of what you find. There is a thread here that shows you how to cut off a small part of the vinyl sheath (after removing the ferrule end) if you don't want to replace the cable. That has the effect of letting the speedometer-type cable stick out sufficiently to be engaged in the electric motor's female output flange.

Regards, Maurice.

Edited by 1schoir
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Hi Maurice,

thanks for giving me your guidence. I have done what you have said and included a phot of each side of the cable. one is significantly shorter than the other as you will see from the pics.post-60369-089993100 1281454103_thumb.jp post-60369-080122600 1281454133_thumb.jp

Also while in the process of putting the clam cover into 'service mode' I discovered a plug connection that is unpluged! Any ideas what its for and where it plugs to? It is on the passenger side (RHD vehicle)near the b pillar.

post-60369-036927800 1281454178_thumb.jp

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Hi Maurice,

thanks for giving me your guidence. I have done what you have said and included a phot of each side of the cable. one is significantly shorter than the other as you will see from the pics.post-60369-089993100 1281454103_thumb.jp post-60369-080122600 1281454133_thumb.jp

Also while in the process of putting the clam cover into 'service mode' I discovered a plug connection that is unpluged! Any ideas what its for and where it plugs to? It is on the passenger side (RHD vehicle)near the b pillar.

post-60369-036927800 1281454178_thumb.jp

nik:

The pictures tell the whole story.

The inner speedometer-type cable on the left side (of the car, right side photo on the screen) clearly shows that the outer cable on that side has stretched, thus effectively causing the inner cable to "retract".

You must pull off the metal ferrule on the end of that cable, cut off an appropriate amount of the outer vinyl sheath so as to match the amount of the inner cable that shows sticking out of the other cable. 3/4 of an inch would be good.

Easy to cut away the vinyl sheath, getting the metal ferrule off can be a little difficult as you have to find a way to "pull up" the three little metal triangles that are pressed into the vinyl sheath. I know of one guy who has reinstalled the cables without the ferrules and they have worked perfectly fine, but I would not go that route myself.

Once you have the 3/4 " sticking out, your top should work fine as the V-lever on that side should be driven again by the electric motor, through the cable and the transmission.

If you have trouble re-inserting the inner cable into the side of the motor, turn the inner cable by hand by 1/32nd of a turn until it inserts easily.

The electric plug that you show in the third photo is either the defroster plug that has come undone from the defroster hook up (although on U.S. cars it's on the other side), or, more likely the connector for the optional speaker box.

Regards, Maurice.

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Hi Maurice,

thanks for giving me your guidence. I have done what you have said and included a phot of each side of the cable. one is significantly shorter than the other as you will see from the pics.post-60369-089993100 1281454103_thumb.jp post-60369-080122600 1281454133_thumb.jp

Also while in the process of putting the clam cover into 'service mode' I discovered a plug connection that is unpluged! Any ideas what its for and where it plugs to? It is on the passenger side (RHD vehicle)near the b pillar.

post-60369-036927800 1281454178_thumb.jp

nik:

The pictures tell the whole story.

The inner speedometer-type cable on the left side (of the car, right side photo on the screen) clearly shows that the outer cable on that side has stretched, thus effectively causing the inner cable to "retract".

You must pull off the metal ferrule on the end of that cable, cut off an appropriate amount of the outer vinyl sheath so as to match the amount of the inner cable that shows sticking out of the other cable. 3/4 of an inch would be good.

Easy to cut away the vinyl sheath, getting the metal ferrule off can be a little difficult as you have to find a way to "pull up" the three little metal triangles that are pressed into the vinyl sheath. I know of one guy who has reinstalled the cables without the ferrules and they have worked perfectly fine, but I would not go that route myself.

Once you have the 3/4 " sticking out, your top should work fine as the V-lever on that side should be driven again by the electric motor, through the cable and the transmission.

If you have trouble re-inserting the inner cable into the side of the motor, turn the inner cable by hand by 1/32nd of a turn until it inserts easily.

The electric plug that you show in the third photo is either the defroster plug that has come undone from the defroster hook up (although on U.S. cars it's on the other side), or, more likely the connector for the optional speaker box.

Regards, Maurice.

Hi Maurice

The only thing I am worried about is the problem was with the right side not the left that shows the retracted cable?

Also with regards to the electric plug I cant find the defroster that it attaches to. maybe as you said it is the optional speaker box. although the defroster light on the dash comes on randomly and you turn it off then it comes back

Can you not just buy replacement cables? or is the cutting down of the sheath the only way?

many thanks

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Hi Maurice

The only thing I am worried about is the problem was with the right side not the left that shows the retracted cable?

Also with regards to the electric plug I cant find the defroster that it attaches to. maybe as you said it is the optional speaker box. although the defroster light on the dash comes on randomly and you turn it off then it comes back

Can you not just buy replacement cables? or is the cutting down of the sheath the only way?

many thanks

nik:

As you stand behind the car, facing forward, the side that shows a "retracted" cable on your car is the left side (driver's side U.S. and psgr side U.K.).

If it is the right side that was giving you a problem, then either the inner cable is frayed or broken inside the vinyl outer sheath or there is a possibility that the junction at which the cable drives the worm gear at the rear of the transmission on that side is faulty. Sometimes the black plastic cover that encases the inside surface of the early version transmissions warps or cracks enough to not hold the worm gear firmly in place and thus the cable no longer drives that transmission. To determine whether it's just a broken or frayed inner cable, just grab the end of the cable with a pair of pliers and tug on it to see if it has suffered damage inside.

The photo of your left side cable shows a definite problem, or one that will arise with just another millimeter or two of "retracting".

You can buy a replacement cable, but, with the early ("A Version") transmissions, it can be more difficult to replace the cable than to shorten the vinyl sheath on your original cable. BTW, I forgot to mention that your cables are the original, smooth sided version, which are the ones that are more prone to stretching.

Here is a link to a thread that gives you a step by step by Tool Pants on how to shorten your existing cables:

http://www.renntech....p-rr/#entry1839

Take a look specifically at post #22 in that thread...The photos are missing, but the description of the steps is spot on.

Take a look at the part number in post #32, as that is the part number for the replacement cable. Same part number for either side, and 1" longer but it fits.

If you are going to take a look at the worm gear inside the right side transmission, you will have to remove the transmission from that side: 19mm bolt at the center of the V-lever, then the three nuts that hold the transmission in place. Take a look at this link for photos and a step by step for removing the transmission: http://www.renntech....230#entry183230

I believe that is covered at pages 18, 19 and 20 of the Part II PDF file.

Regards, Maurice.

Edited by 1schoir
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