Jump to content

The RennTech.org community is Member supported!  Please consider an ANNUAL donation to help keep this site operating.
Click here to Donate

Welcome to RennTech.org Community, Guest

There are many great features available to you once you register at RennTech.org
You are free to view posts here, but you must log in to reply to existing posts, or to start your own new topic. Like most online communities, there are costs involved to maintain a site like this - so we encourage our members to donate. All donations go to the costs operating and maintaining this site. We prefer that guests take part in our community and we offer a lot in return to those willing to join our corner of the Porsche world. This site is 99 percent member supported (less than 1 percent comes from advertising) - so please consider an annual donation to keep this site running.

Here are some of the features available - once you register at RennTech.org

  • View Classified Ads
  • DIY Tutorials
  • Porsche TSB Listings (limited)
  • VIN Decoder
  • Special Offers
  • OBD II P-Codes
  • Paint Codes
  • Registry
  • Videos System
  • View Reviews
  • and get rid of this welcome message

It takes just a few minutes to register, and it's FREE

Contributing Members also get these additional benefits:
(you become a Contributing Member by donating money to the operation of this site)

  • No ads - advertisements are removed
  • Access the Contributors Only Forum
  • Contributing Members Only Downloads
  • Send attachments with PMs
  • All image/file storage limits are substantially increased for all Contributing Members
  • Option Codes Lookup
  • VIN Option Lookups (limited)

Plastic Ball Joints keep disconnecting when closing soft top


Recommended Posts

Hi all,

I had parked my car in downtown san francisco, and someone cut the roof and broke in, so he could become richer by a couple quarters.

Anyways, I replaced the whole roof (including the frame) and all the components work perfectly fine now. There is just this one problem:

When pushing the switch to open the roof, the roof retracts all the way and the clam shell closes and covers the soft top successfully. But when going the other way, the plastic ball joints disconnect from the metal ball towards the last for inches of reaching the 'Closed' position. The roof "falls" into the close position, and the plastic ball joints are off.

I keep adjusting the length of the joint arms, but every time, either the plastic ball joint on the right side disconnects, or the one on the left side, or it's both sides.

What could be the issue? I'd say the left and right motors are not aligned correctly, but then again it doesn't make sense to me because the old roof was working perfectly, and all I did was replacing the roof itself. I did not touch the motors, so why would the alignments be off now? could worn out rubber bushes lead to this kind of issue?? Anyone has any idea what the problem could be?

By the way this is a 986 boxster 1999 :)

Link to post
Share on other sites
    You can remove these ads by becoming a Contributing Member.

Sounds like a timing issue with the drive system.

I believe if the top drive trannys are to far advanced or retarded a certain part rotates too far and just pops the rods off because of the clearance issue.

Checking the sync and limit positions is where I would look first

---

I am here: http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=43.433226,-79.703119

Link to post
Share on other sites

The only reason I doubt it's a timing issue is the fact that I have not touched the v-levers at all. How could the soft top replacement have an affect on the timing between the left and right side?

But good idea I will measure the positions tonight so I can verify it is (or not) the timing issue.

Could it also be that used rubber bushes make the joint arms more flexible, and therefore they become more easily disconnected from the ball?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Worn parts are problem no 1. Also I see the ball ends cracking and failing all the time. I've seen them installed backwards. And timing issues of all sorts including motor driving past top closure. Often drive cable tubes stretch and then the cable can pop out then you have left n right sync issues.

You might want to get another body to operate the top while you inspect the problems

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 months later...

Even though you did not touch your v- lever arms during your replacement, you did introduce a new variable...the new top frame. How do you know that the new frame alignment etc is identical to your old frame?

A few things to check out...

Perhaps the new frame is not engaging the microswitch on the windshield frame at the same time as the old top did.

When is the B pilar switch engaged?

The plastic pivot pieces may indeed be worn and need replacement.

Check to see that both transmissions are indeed in sync by doing the following;

1. Disconnect your top frame from the v-lever arms.

2. Press your top button and rotate the arms until the clam shell arms are veritcal. Verify plumb with torpedo level.

3. Adjust transmissions by disconnecting the drive cables from the motor and rotating slowly with a cordless drill.

4. Reconnect drive cables and lower clamshell until it is just above the trunk and look 'eyeball' it for level.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

hi new guy here in uk just bought a 2000 boxster off a friend cars been standing for 6 mths he told me roofs always been ok till he started it up as i was due to test drive and started testing hood as it went down half way he hard a sort of pop/clonk he said he could see a plastick clip on ball and socked arm had poped of he put roof back up up now when u try and put it down it just makes clonking sound but dosent move 1st how do i get roof down or half way down so i can get to problym and. 2nd i see talk of guy who sells the plastick joints in holland has anyone got upto date contact details for him cheers dave

Link to post
Share on other sites

hi new guy here in uk just bought a 2000 boxster off a friend cars been standing for 6 mths he told me roofs always been ok till he started it up as i was due to test drive and started testing hood as it went down half way he hard a sort of pop/clonk he said he could see a plastick clip on ball and socked arm had poped of he put roof back up up now when u try and put it down it just makes clonking sound but dosent move 1st how do i get roof down or half way down so i can get to problym and. 2nd i see talk of guy who sells the plastick joints in holland has anyone got upto date contact details for him cheers dave

Kudos:

1st:

If the canvas part of the top is not moving, but the clamshell is moving, then your plastic ball cups have either popped off or broken apart as they are what pull and push on the B-Pillar part of the convertible top frame.

First, unlatch the latch of the convertible top at the top center of the windshield frame.

To get the top to open manually, you must disconnect the white (or red if yours are original and have never been replaced) plastic cups at the base of the B-Pillar and the black "hydraulic" pushrods where they connect to the V-levers.

Disconnecting the (white or red) plastic ball cups will allow you to operate the convertible top manually.

Disconnecting the black "hydraulic" pushrods will allow you to operate the clamshell manually.

Here is a diagram of the mechanism, which should help you orient yourself as to what you are looking for:

To have a better chance to see the parts that must be disconnected, you will have to pull aside the (vinyl) rain curtain which is hung from the rear main bow of the convertible top frame and attached onto the rear firewall by means of two plastic clips (one all the way to the left and one all the way to the right, on the rear firewall). That curtain is also loosely held in place by yet another set of two cables that are located at the rearmost corners of the (carpet-covered) engine compartment lid (on the car body, not on the lid). That cable is held on to a small metal ball and you must pry each one apart from its metal ball.

Here is a photo of the flexible cable that leads to the metal ball (hidden under the metal cup at the bottom of the cable) at the side of the curtain:

post-6627-0-42561500-1319339853_thumb.jp

That particular connection is easy to separate, unlike the black "hydraulic" pushrod.

Once you have the curtain's cable separated, you may also have to remove the black plastic cosmetic covers (if someone hasn't removed them already and not replaced them) that are simply clipped onto the arms that support the clamshell.

.

To access the white (or red) plastic ball cups, sit sideways in the driver's seat with the door open and your feet on the ground. Look down from above the side of the car (just behind where the rear quarter panel meets the rear of the door if the door were closed) and you should be able to see the white (or red) plastic ball cup. Pry that cup off by levering it outboard. You will need a fat screwdriver or pry bar.

Then you will have to reach between the roll bar hoops, or possibly reach through them, to get at the connection of the hydraulic push rod to the V-lever. That connection is a real bear, so you will have to apply a great deal of pressure to separate it. Keep in mind that these black "hydraulic" pushrods are actually cylinders that contain one large spring each and that these springs are under tension when the clamshell is completely closed on top of the stowed top. Be careful not to hurt yourself there, but you just have to get the connection apart, again with the red plastic capped tool in the tool kit, a fat screwdriver or, preferably an angled screwdriver-type pry bar. I have also had success using a non-automotive tool called a cat's claw, which is usually used to pull nails.

If you absolutely cannot get that joint apart, you could remove the spring clip that holds the opposite end of the black hydraulic pushrod onto the clamshell support arm. Once you have removed that clip, you can press the right angle small round rod outboard until it comes out and away from the hole through which it passes in the clamshell support arm.

Once you have the various parts disconnected, DO NOT press the dashboard switch without CAREFULLY marking (and photographing) the position of the V-levers relative to the sides of the body that they are mounted on. Otherwise, it will be much more difficult to re-sychronize the V-levers.

Also, be very careful if you decide to operate your top manually because the push rod arms that are normally connected to the steel balls at the base of the B-pillars will be dangling from the V-levers. When they are dangling and you move the convertible top V-levers, those push rod arms can dig into the foam liner and tear it, which will cause leaks into the cabin later on. Those push rod arms can also dig in and prevent the V-levers from turning.

2nd:

PM sent with the info on the new plastic ball cups.

Regards, Maurice.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

hi there maurice got the end caps from mr brink charged me 30 euro for 2 so saved loads on dealer price of complet rods cars in shop as it also had a snapped flex drive shaft and on reading up sounds like a full on mission syncing the roof moters so left it to fitter recon its one of the jobs gets esayer once you have done a few times anyway thanks for your help and recomendation cheers dave

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.