I am at a point where all that is left to finish the restoration on the coupe I am building is the roof. I am having a hard time justifying the 500.00 + for top bows so I have several questions. First has anyone fabricated their own top bows? Also I just watched a video where a model A coupe roof was replaced with Masonite, and the fabric glued and stretched over. has anyone ever done that on a T? Now before the ( OH MY GOD ) geeks chime in, I am just in the question phase so please be diplomatic or at least civil. Thanks in advance for all input. Harv.
In my opinion (take that for what it's worth!), the model T body has too much flex in it for a solid top to work well. If the top stays good, some other place in the body will become stressed and eventually fail.
Do you have the old wood? The coupe tops are not that large, and a good woodworker should be able to make them. BTW, even if you did the solid top, you'd still needs some bows to tack the headliner in.
I have seen Coupe top wood on ebay pretty reasonable (I was looking for tudor top wood, the guy who lists the coupe top wood doesn't have the tudor wood. I may resort to making my own too!
David, I don't have any samples to go by. I was under the impression that the top adds structural strength to the body. If I am wrong then it shouldn't be hard to make a set of cross bows and side rails. They won't be seen since they are covered by fabric and head liner. I'm still thinking. Harv.
Fordwood.com has complete top wood kits for '26-'27 coupes at $410.
Fordwood top for the Coupe is backordered until ?? . Also 410.00 is a chunk of change. I'll probably buy their kit when it comes available but am just exploring options if their are any. Harv
Try Classic Wood Products, Greensboro NC. They were at Hershey. Got their price list, they have the '26-'27 Coupe Top wood (everything above the door opening) for $496. Kiln dried Ash.
Call them for delivery est. The old fashion way, talk
Phone 336-691-1344 Its a wood shop, don't have a web page.
And you could contact Leon Parker, he sells working prints for body wood, might have the top wood plans.
Here is older post where Leon is showing how he wooded a coupe top.
I do not have any plans for the closed cars.
The plans I have are from 1913-27 for the tourings and roadsters.
Thanks for the info Leon.
Apparently no other options exist except a custom kit. I'm still having a tough time justifying the amount of money. I'm still thinking. Thanks all. Harv.
Harvey, I have some photos a fellow forum member sent me of his 1926 Coupe top wood. Send me a PM and I'll get those over to you, they may or may not be helpful.
Here's the eBay auction, with a nice pic of the wood kit--unfortunately it's $425 plus about $29 shipping.
If you are any good a wood working, I'm certain the cost of the lumber would be much less--but then there's all your labor--but then the labor is part of the fun!! Right????
I built this top wood from scratch at a cost of about $60.00 or so. It isn't hard to do if you have a table saw and a electric hand planer. I used rough cut ash 5/4". Using the out line of the top of the car for the outside pattern and keeping the same width all the way around for the inside pattern. The bows were cut with the curve in them but be careful to keep the grain of the wood correct for the sake of strength.
Correction on this...I used 6/4" rough cut. (sorry).
Don, where did you get the wood? Dave
I bought the wood at a local lumber mill shop. If you have a wood shop in your area they can help you out. I always buy rough cut because it is so much cheaper that way. If the wood shop or mill doesn't sell rough cut they probably know someone who does. I would start there.
I can't remember exactly but I believe the entire top was cut from a 10"X 12'x 1 1/2" rough cut board.
Don, Those pictures are great. Just what I am looking for. I have some 5/4 ash, would that work? other wise I'll get some 6/4. I'm going to give it a try. Thanks to all. If I have any questions I'll email if that's ok. Harv.
Harvey that 5/4" should work just lessen the gap between the crossribs and the headliner shelf. You need to have room there for the headliner and the upholstery that covers the half round inside the coupe.