It's finally happening: Soft Top Replacement - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 06:43 PM Thread Starter
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It's finally happening: Soft Top Replacement

Today the Mrs. and I committed to replacing the soft top on Benzie.

One of the recommended vendors from the bigger thread, German Auto Tops happens to be within walking distance of my house here in North Hollywood.

My wife and I took a visit over there. I must say, these guys are absolutely old school. The entire place is HUGE. They have a bunch of guys working by hand to make each soft top brand spanking new and rolls upon rolls of different material from Twillfast to Sonnenland.

The owner John is a delightful fellow and took us around. Mrs. Beast and I really didn't want to replace our black softop with another black one and wanted to see what tan or beige looked like with some swatches against the gold paint.

Well turns out, John actually has a secret stash of Sonnenland material there that he doesn't market on the website! He showed us an off beige Sonnenland that isn't made anymore that is very popular with the restoration community here in southern California. I'm really glad I went in because it's an excellent color that looks good, won't absorb heat, and above all won't look bad when it will undoubtedly get dirty by the SoCal dust.

He's making the top now and it should be ready by next Tuesday. We have an installer planning on installing it next Friday.

I'll take pictures once it is done. If you're in Southern California, I recommend you take some time to stop by in person because his selection of materials is way more varied than what he has online.
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 06:48 PM
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Originally Posted by okyoureabeast View Post
Today the Mrs. and I committed to replacing the soft top on Benzie.

One of the recommended vendors from the bigger thread, German Auto Tops happens to be within walking distance of my house here in North Hollywood.

My wife and I took a visit over there. I must say, these guys are absolutely old school. The entire place is HUGE. They have a bunch of guys working by hand to make each soft top brand spanking new and rolls upon rolls of different material from Twillfast to Sonnenland.

The owner John is a delightful fellow and took us around. Mrs. Beast and I really didn't want to replace our black softop with another black one and wanted to see what tan or beige looked like with some swatches against the gold paint.

Well turns out, John actually has a secret stash of Sonnenland material there that he doesn't market on the website! He showed us an off beige Sonnenland that isn't made anymore that is very popular with the restoration community here in southern California. I'm really glad I went in because it's an excellent color that looks good, won't absorb heat, and above all won't look bad when it will undoubtedly get dirty by the SoCal dust.

He's making the top now and it should be ready by next Tuesday. We have an installer planning on installing it next Friday.

I'll take pictures once it is done. If you're in Southern California, I recommend you take some time to stop by in person because his selection of materials is way more varied than what he has online.
Looking forward to it.

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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 06:54 PM
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Looking forward to it.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 08:37 PM
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Good buy. I bought a dark chocolate one from him but maybe would have liked a lighter color as my car is gold too! Nothing like being Beastie on the spot!
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 09:06 AM
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Had mine replaced I'm guessing about 5 years ago. One thing my installer told me was to keep the soft top up for about a week so it "forms/settles in". Made sense to me and that's what I did. OK truth be known it was more like 5 days...patience is not high up on my list of virtues...
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 11:47 AM
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patience is not high up on my list of virtues
Patience is wildly over rated.

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He's making the top now and it should be ready by next Tuesday. We have an installer planning on installing it next Friday.
Looking forward to the pictures. Glad to hear about the good experience from German Auto Tops. @joser85 and I have discussed doing this work on both our cars in a collaborative effort in the near future.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 03:35 PM
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I logged into this site after several years of inactivity to explore the local wisdom for the best sources for replacement tops. I just perused the German Auto Tops website but wanted to confirm that they are a good source for original equipment quality tops.

Last edited by SMinn560SL; 06-12-2019 at 03:46 PM.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 05:33 PM
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I attempted to order but got a message indicating that the shipment method was not available. Guess I'll have to call them tomorrow.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-12-2019, 09:34 PM
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Smile Soft tops from GAT

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Originally Posted by SMinn560SL View Post
I logged into this site after several years of inactivity to explore the local wisdom for the best sources for replacement tops. I just perused the German Auto Tops website but wanted to confirm that they are a good source for original equipment quality tops.
I was very happy with the quality of mine. Yes to the advice " keep the top up for a few days" and if it's tight to lock up, just spray liberally with water and then tighten down.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 11:51 PM
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Patience is wildly over rated.

Looking forward to the pictures. Glad to hear about the good experience from German Auto Tops. @joser85 and I have discussed doing this work on both our cars in a collaborative effort in the near future.
I, too, am lacking in the patience department. Add to that the multiple age-related holes in my soft top and I'm ready to go as soon as you are, Cush. It's worth noting this will be yet another project that I never ever dreamed I would be willing to tackle when I bought this obsession -- er, uh, utilitarian vehicle, as I tell Mrs. Joser. And the funny thing is, it's just one of many on my project wish-list.

Hey, that actually sounds like a good topic for a new thread: "What's on your SL project list?" I can't find such a thread with a cursory search.
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