View Full Version : Convertable or T-Top


dps_ls1
07-22-2006, 02:53 PM
I am thinking about buying another Camaro more than likely SS and I am trying to decide if I want to get a T-Top or a Convertable. Let me know some of your likes and dislikes about both.

Ace$nyper
07-22-2006, 03:07 PM
I like the both but some things swayed me about the T tops.

It's just as sturdy and quiet as a normal roof. Quieter then verts weights less.

Most any cars have a vert opt who has t tops other then Fbodies :)

I tested all 3 out and I own a t-top.

quiet_storm98
07-22-2006, 03:22 PM
at first i didn't want a vert but now that i have one i really like it. It is pretty nice that you can put the top down and up without having to get out of the car and you dont see as many verts as well. Verts are also worth more and are more rare then a t-top car. One other plus is that chicks dig a vert :)

Shooter_Jay
07-22-2006, 08:26 PM
It's just as sturdy and quiet as a normal roof.

I disagree. Structurally a full roof is going to be much stiffer than a t-roof.

picture a framed wall in your house, but without the drywall, and with only one stud in the middle. it's pretty weak. fixing plywood to the face of it would GREATLY increase the rigidity of the structure.

Plus, the verts have subframe stiffeners from the factory, which the t-top cars don't. Sure you can add stiffeners to a t-top car, but you can add extra of them too to a convertible too.

Shooter_Jay
07-22-2006, 08:36 PM
to each their own of course, but here are some reasons I changed my mind while shopping for a t-top car, and went with a vert instead.

1. You have to store your t-tops somewhere, which means if you take them off, you have no trunk, back seat, or can't lock your car down because you left them at home(really hope it doesn't shower out).

2. LS1 convertibles come with sub-frame connectors which the t-top cars don't.

3. You can close/open the roof while you're driving slowly, so takes no time really, as opposed to getting out of the car and handling awkward delicate pieces every time you want to lock/unlock your car. Say you run into a store for two minutes. My top is going up pulling in, coming down pulling out.

4. Just my and maybe others' opinions, but I think the vert is the best look of the three styles, with hardtop looking 2nd best, though I'd own a t-top before a hardtop, but of course I'd own any of them, because they all look pretty damn good.

5. There's just something special about a convertible, and I get to have a manual and 300+rwhp in mine :devil:

WhiteKnightZ28
07-23-2006, 10:14 AM
T-tops all the way baby!

1. Convertible camaros look exactly like convertible sebrings.

2. T-tops are unique, very few cars were ever offered with them, unlike verts.

3. More ridgitity, the verts get sub-frame connectors to make up for their lack of ridgitity, and you can always put SFC's on a t-top car for like $150 if it bothers you that you dont have them.

4. You can run faster at the track without needing a roll cage.

5. It really only takes me about 45 seconds to take my tops off and store them, so its hardly a hassel.

6. When the tops are on you basicly have a sunroof, unlike the verts.

Hobb3s
07-23-2006, 09:17 PM
Hard decision but I'm going to have to go with T-tops. It's nice to be able to have the option and look of a hardtop roof or the nice open air.

I do like the verts a lot, but the weight and the fact that the top has bubble effect at highway speeds has turned me off to them.

Shooter_Jay
07-23-2006, 09:20 PM
if you look at the stats, it's only about 140 lbs heavier for the vert. probably the weight of the sfc.

oh and ya it looks just like a sebring ya :jest: hey the sebring comes in hardtop too

Ace$nyper
07-24-2006, 09:41 AM
I disagree. Structurally a full roof is going to be much stiffer than a t-roof.

picture a framed wall in your house, but without the drywall, and with only one stud in the middle. it's pretty weak. fixing plywood to the face of it would GREATLY increase the rigidity of the structure.

Plus, the verts have subframe stiffeners from the factory, which the t-top cars don't. Sure you can add stiffeners to a t-top car, but you can add extra of them too to a convertible too.
Very true I should have been more spefic for a daily it is.

Subframes are a wieght issue not a strenght issue when it comes to the vert. They don't do the same as a set of sub frames from say UMI does.

Also subframes in the eyes of most who race feel subframes are only good for a jacking point.

Shooter_Jay
07-24-2006, 12:18 PM
Subframes are a wieght issue not a strenght issue when it comes to the vert.
Um, where are you getting this info? It seems to me, GM engineering added the "brace" for bracing, not for ballast. Can you show me your engineering calculations :jest:

Ace$nyper
07-24-2006, 12:37 PM
Um, where are you getting this info? It seems to me, GM engineering added the "brace" for bracing, not for ballast. Can you show me your engineering calculations :jest:
Forgive my poor wording again, I had a brutal hangover this morn.

I meant it's more so to help reduce the strain on the chassis from the extra weight on the vert. It's not like a bonus SFC that only verts got.

Shooter_Jay
07-24-2006, 12:53 PM
It's not like a bonus SFC that only verts got.

Actually, I think that's exactly what it IS... a SFC that only the convertibles got, that's exactly what I was talking about.

Ace$nyper
07-24-2006, 12:58 PM
Actually, I think that's exactly what it IS... a SFC that only the convertibles got, that's exactly what I was talking about.
From everything I've ever heard it's more a brace for the weight and it gets called an SFC even though it doesn't do same as SFC do in theory?

quiet_storm98
07-24-2006, 01:41 PM
There's just something special about a convertible, and I get to have a manual and 300+rwhp in mine :devil:
i feel you there man..its nice having a manual vert plus the feeling of having the top down on a nice night is unbeatable..there is nothing wrong with t-tops but they just dont have the same feel of a vert. My aunt has a firebird with t-tops and its ok but i like my vert much better

badjuju342
07-24-2006, 02:16 PM
I have both flavors. Here's my observations:
You cannot beat a convertible for the fun factor and it is a babe magnet. But , you can't leave a convertible just anywhere and if you do , don't lock the doors. A radio is a lot less expensive to reaplace than a sliced top. T-tops do give you somewhat of an open air feeling and they are more secure. So in conclusion , I didn't help at all , LOL.:jest:

Shooter_Jay
07-24-2006, 06:03 PM
From everything I've ever heard it's more a brace for the weight and it gets called an SFC even though it doesn't do same as SFC do in theory?

sorry to keep correcting you...
If not for the factory SFC....A vert would be about the same weight as a t-top car or hardtop, but the vert comes with a factory SFC, which is what makes the vert about 140 pounds heavier than the non-verts.

The additional weight is NOT the weight of the cloth roof and a few pieces of metal, near as much as it is the additional weight of the factory sfc, which by the way, is designed to stiffen up the frame, not to add weight to the car for nothing. :bang:

it gets called an SFC even though it doesn't do same as SFC do in theory?

see above :cheers:

And I have to agree, a warm night is the perfect ride, much better than sunny days. Even cloudy days are real nice too. But this goes for t-tops too I'm sure.

Anyway, don't get me wrong, I like t-tops too, I was shopping for one for a while, had a deposit on two different ones, but the titles were too slow and I changed my mind on both.

BitViper
07-24-2006, 06:21 PM
I am thinking about buying another Camaro more than likely SS and I am trying to decide if I want to get a T-Top or a Convertable. Let me know some of your likes and dislikes about both.


If this is a second car..then by all means buy th evert..then you'd have one of each!

Ace$nyper
07-24-2006, 06:57 PM
sorry to keep correcting you...
If not for the factory SFC....A vert would be about the same weight as a t-top car or hardtop, but the vert comes with a factory SFC, which is what makes the vert about 140 pounds heavier than the non-verts.

The additional weight is NOT the weight of the cloth roof and a few pieces of metal, near as much as it is the additional weight of the factory sfc, which by the way, is designed to stiffen up the frame, not to add weight to the car for nothing. :bang:



see above :cheers:

And I have to agree, a warm night is the perfect ride, much better than sunny days. Even cloudy days are real nice too. But this goes for t-tops too I'm sure.

Anyway, don't get me wrong, I like t-tops too, I was shopping for one for a while, had a deposit on two different ones, but the titles were too slow and I changed my mind on both.
No need to say your sorry I was misinformed from what reading i've done.

I'm gald you took the time to clean things up for me :cheers:

Boodyrider
07-24-2006, 07:12 PM
I do like the verts a lot, but the weight and the fact that the top has bubble effect at highway speeds has turned me off to them.


No bubble if top is tight, tightening is an afternoon's work at most.

Weight addressed already.

Boodyrider
07-24-2006, 07:19 PM
Buy the vert, unless it's gonna be track only. (Actually, track only vert would be cool too, but requires a bar stock and a cage modded lightly.) Track only, find a stripper 1LE hardtop.

Weight is a non-issue, get rid of fat chicks and date skinny ones. Get a little more aggressive cam than you otherwise would have. Save the cost and weight of subframes, vert's already got 'em.

Vert's WAY cooler.

Top up and down faster than T-tops on/off, no storage issues. (Yeah, ok, ya gotta smaller trunk, who cares anyway?)

ONLY disadvantage to the vrt, in my eyes, is that to run legally, even stock, at the track, you have to install a roll bar or cage.

You know what? I got another car I can run at the track. I LOVE my vert, and I've had both T and vert cars.

Shooter_Jay
07-24-2006, 08:04 PM
No need to say your sorry I was misinformed from what reading i've done.

I'm gald you took the time to clean things up for me :cheers:

Oh good, some people just think I'm an ahole :-) I hope this isn't one of those times I was sure I was right but was mistaken :emb:

Hennytime
07-25-2006, 04:37 PM
I disagree. Structurally a full roof is going to be much stiffer than a t-roof.

picture a framed wall in your house, but without the drywall, and with only one stud in the middle. it's pretty weak. fixing plywood to the face of it would GREATLY increase the rigidity of the structure.

Plus, the verts have subframe stiffeners from the factory, which the t-top cars don't. Sure you can add stiffeners to a t-top car, but you can add extra of them too to a convertible too.
not true, a buddy of mine did a ttop conversion on his car, and there was no difference in handling, braking, acceleration, anything. he said there is nothing there, he sawzawed right through the roof and said all the structural support is in the same spots as a ttops car

Ace$nyper
07-25-2006, 05:01 PM
not true, a buddy of mine did a ttop conversion on his car, and there was no difference in handling, braking, acceleration, anything. he said there is nothing there, he sawzawed right through the roof and said all the structural support is in the same spots as a ttops car
I would say yes there will be changes not any street car will feel though. Think would they be able to keep the roof up if they took the structal frame off?

No it'll plob and or sag, the tops were designed around them for a reason :)

Shooter_Jay
07-25-2006, 05:39 PM
not true, a buddy of mine did a ttop conversion on his car, and there was no difference in handling, braking, acceleration, anything. he said there is nothing there, he sawzawed right through the roof and said all the structural support is in the same spots as a ttops car

Well maybe, but just because somebody sawzalled the roof off doesn't mean they understand the structural loading of the chassis/roof. From an engineering/structural perspective (I do that stuff for work, and maybe others will back me up), distributing the loads across a concave panel by its edges is much stiffer than a narrow bar connected at each end, given the same cross-sectional area of material that is. Especially the twisting forces of cornering. A solid roof is going to be much stiffer than a t-roof. If you don't believe me, Ask any hard-top fanatic why they don't want t-tops.

OctaneZ28
07-25-2006, 05:57 PM
T-top and hard-top 4th Gens all start out structurally the same.
The support in the roof is in the center on both.
The hard top has side supports on the roof, but they're hardly more than sheet metal, and I don't think they really change the support structure much.

Oh and I voted t-tops.. 5 of my 6 F-Bodies have had t-tops. :)

Shooter_Jay
07-25-2006, 06:11 PM
I would say yes there will be changes not any street car will feel though. Think would they be able to keep the roof up if they took the structal frame off?

No it'll plob and or sag, the tops were designed around them for a reason :)

I agree that without any different frame bracing, a t-top is better structurally than a convertible by quite a bit I imagine, but the a hardtop is even much stronger.

I have heard of convertible guys taking the factory SFC off for weight reduction, but I'd never do it. After all, it has NO roof which normally adds loads of strength to the chassis. :cheers:

RPM WS6
07-25-2006, 06:31 PM
I voted T-tops.

Personally I don't care for the look of a 4th gen with a ragtop. Just doesn't do much for me, I think the lines flow better with the hardtop/t-top cars.

Appearance is subjective though. There is no "right" answer here.

Go with whatever you like. That's all that really matters. :)

davered00ss
08-06-2006, 07:38 PM
Gotta be t-tops.

UMI Performance
08-07-2006, 02:18 PM
I like them both but have owned T-Tops all my life, never actually owned a convertible F-Body.

My next purchase for work purposes will be a 00-02 Trans Am Convertible. This means we will offering more convertible items such as SFC's and bolt in roll cages :)

ELMiN8oR
08-07-2006, 02:23 PM
i'll go with the T-Tops
cause sorry to they this to you guys who ows a F-Body Convertable
it makes me sick :(
i really wish that chevy goes with hard top Convertable
Example: Benz SL, Caddi XLR

wayblownout
08-07-2006, 03:50 PM
Just my opinion:

T-Tops for sure. Just remember to lock them in. :)

dsster
08-07-2006, 07:13 PM
i voted t-tops, more likely less problem in a longrun.

SS30ANV
08-07-2006, 07:34 PM
Convertible without a question. Have had T-Top camaro's, like them, but after driving verts, I'll never go back. JMHO :drive:

Thule
08-07-2006, 08:26 PM
i hate convertibles, think they are ugly.. and i hafe rolled one :(

i most want a hard top.. but the car that i am getting is an T top

Shooter_Jay
08-08-2006, 11:40 PM
i hate convertibles, think they are ugly.. and i hafe rolled one :(

i most want a hard top.. but the car that i am getting is an T top

Why do you like hard top better than t-top?

knowitman
08-23-2006, 10:06 PM
I would never get an f-body without t-tops.

knowitman
08-23-2006, 10:16 PM
I would never get an f-body without t-tops.

knowitman
08-24-2006, 07:11 AM
I would never get an f-body without t-tops.

fastmatt98
09-03-2006, 02:10 AM
1 hard top f-body
4 t-top f-fodies
3 vert f-bodies.
I gotta say loved all my cars in different ways but I never stop smiling when I'm driving my vert on a beautiful day or night. I stuck some SFC's under my car and it handles fine. Going through gears with over 400rwhp under your ass never gets old. Good luck with your search.

NightWindDriftr
09-05-2006, 12:33 PM
I like the t-top option because it perserves some kind of roof line when you have them off. Of course, 'vert owners couldn't care any less about that. :)

zo6vette037
09-13-2006, 07:20 AM
A car is like a woman.... if the top don't come off it ain't worth shit!

For me as long as the top can come off, ill drive it!

zo6vette037
09-13-2006, 07:54 AM
A car is like a woman.... if the top don't come off it ain't worth shit!

For me as long as the top can come off, ill drive it!

gavspurplez
09-16-2006, 09:30 AM
'verts do nothing for me on any car.

i love my t-tops :chug:

lrdvadr
09-30-2006, 01:38 PM
I prefer convertibles for fair-weather driving. A disadvantage to the convertible is poor visibility in reverse with the top up.

Mike00ss
09-30-2006, 06:28 PM
T-tops all the way

NC01TA
10-01-2006, 09:15 AM
I prefer convertibles for fair-weather driving. A disadvantage to the convertible is poor visibility in reverse with the top up.

Man, you sure have that right! Can't see a thing.

One other thing, I owned a hardtop Formula for 9 years and never gave a thought to going out at night or leaving the car anywhere. With a convertible, it is nerve-wracking every time you park it. You don't want to come back to a slashed roof. I love my vert but the thinking and worries are definitely there. :thinker:

LS1 Lifeguard
10-02-2006, 03:38 PM
T-TOPS all the way, conv looks like crap and will slow you down, take it all up with the t tops and get more recognition.

Shooter_Jay
10-07-2006, 06:33 PM
T-TOPS all the way, conv looks like crap and will slow you down, take it all up with the t tops and get more recognition.

couldn't disagree more, 5 yeah rights in one sentence lol :judge: :drive:

jimsfastls1
10-07-2006, 10:08 PM
I wanted a solid roof when I got mine, but after having the T-tops I enjoy them. Wish I used them more. I was worried when I got the car that over time I'd "twist" the car causing a leak in the T's. I know people this happened to with 3rd gens.

35thZ-28
10-12-2006, 07:46 PM
T-Tops. Verts are ugly as hell and when they are up it makes the car look cheap. Sorry vert guys.

CavPat
10-17-2006, 03:11 PM
I prefer T-tops for no particular reason, I personally just like the way they look better.

95TAGary
10-17-2006, 04:10 PM
Convertible all the way. Had them both and would never go back to t-tops.

92 camaro
11-07-2006, 10:08 PM
Take it from someone who has corkscrewed their t-top F-body by getting a little stupid with a big block, theres not a lot about camaros that is structurally rigid. Both have their advantages and disadvantages. If it's just for a daily driver, go whichever way you like. When you start modifying, that's when the inherent weaknesses become glaringly apparent. Vert top motors are heavy and there's the whole install a rollbar for track use problem. T tops do nothing to stop the twisting effect of a truly powerful engine, but both of these problems are relatively easy to fix with SFCs, a good rollbar (to brace the structure of the vehicle internaly) or a multitude of other body bracing techniques. But that's if you want to go that route later. Do what you think is cool, and it will be cool.

TonyPie
11-18-2006, 02:17 PM
Own a 95 Firebird Trans Am with t-tops. Next car will be convertible. I like the open air but just too lazy to take them on and off. Am lucky tho, mine still don't leak!

Darth Z
11-19-2006, 03:27 PM
I would love to have a convertable, but wouldn' t want one as my ownly Camaro. I would go with a hard top if you want a full-on beast of a race car, but you already have one. T-tops kick ass on pretty days or nights, but when the sky suddenly turns black, the heavens open, and you're submerged in a torrential downpour, it' s not just a simple pull to the shoulder and push a button. You have to get out, open the hatch, and run around the car like a damn chicken with your head chopped off to put the tops on. A vert would be an awesome addition to a pre-existing F-body family. You can drive the vert on nice days, and the hard-top or T-top car, the rest of the time. :thumb:

gyrene2003
11-19-2006, 03:53 PM
Ok, so i think u guys can stop posting that u dont like verts cause if the wieght! Obviously ur not sure about what u speak of. when it comes to racing, the wieght is not signifficant enough to affect anything, example, time in my signature is stock and the first time my car went to the track and the first time i ever drove down 1/4 mile stretch! Its all preferance though man, ive had 3 f-bods, one 86 IROC with T-tops, a 2000 RS with T-tops and my current ride. I must say i never thought i would own one and would probably be bashing them right now if i hadent found mine, so all i can say is dont knock em til ya try em! If u have a hardtop already then screw t-tops and get a vert, not even a question!!

rodrigosantos
11-19-2006, 04:54 PM
Heres the million dollar question...............

Is there anyway to convert a t top car to convertible??

I know it would be very expensive, but im just curious.....

Shooter_Jay
11-19-2006, 04:58 PM
Heres the million dollar question...............

Is there anyway to convert a t top car to convertible??

I know it would be very expensive, but im just curious.....

I know of a third gen vert show car I saw a bunch of pics of. The guy converted it to vert, from ttop. He had his own body shop though. I don't even think it was crashed then done, I think it was just a 2nd life for his show car. Way done up. don't know what it cost, or what a 4th gen would cost. I imagine probably much easier to sell then buy a vert.

Darth Z
11-19-2006, 05:39 PM
Ok, so i think u guys can stop posting that u dont like verts cause if the wieght! Obviously ur not sure about what u speak of. when it comes to racing, the wieght is not signifficant enough to affect anything

When it comes to straighline performance, a couple hundred extra pounds, and the excessive flex of the car can make a big difference. Anything can be made fast, but it will take more time and money to make a vert run. Verts simply are not ideal cars for dragstrip warriors, but are wonderful cars in their own right. :thumb:

Heres the million dollar question...............

Is there anyway to convert a t top car to convertible??

I know it would be very expensive, but im just curious.....

ANYTHING is possible, but why? http://smilies.vidahost.com/otn/confused/shrug03.gif It would be stupid expensive! I hope you have plenty http://smilies.vidahost.com/contrib/tweetz/ky.gif if you intend to go that route! :nod:

Shooter_Jay
11-19-2006, 07:21 PM
here's the link to the vert timeslips thread, and then the list copied from there too:

http://www.ls1tech.com/forums/showthread.php?t=486794

1. cablebandit - 9.98 @ 142 (1.5*), 00 Trans Am, 3800, 3.23, 3860lbs, Date?, TT
2. SlickVert -10.97 @ 126.20 (1.53), 99 WS6 M6, Spec 3, 4.56, 3480lbs, 03/06, H/C
3. 1996z28 - 11.60 @ 112.42 (1.50), 96 M6 Z28, 4.30, 3400lbs 11/05 Stock internals / 150 shot
4. Dustin - 12.540 @ 105.27 (1.81), 00 Z28 A4, YSS3800, 2.73, 3300lbs, 04/06, Stock internals
5. Chas1 - 12.692 @ 113.63 (2.14), 99 WS6 A4, Fuddle 3000, Gear?, 3860lbs, P1SC1 @ 7lbs
6. anotherreject04 - 13.001 @ 107.6 (2.001), 02 Trans Am A4, Gear?, Race weight?, 03/06, Stock internals
7. Josh2006 - 13.163 @ 106.61 (2.04), 01 Z28 A4, 2.73, 3550lbs, 03/06 Stock internals
8. Shooter_Jay - 13.427 @ 107.44 (2.24), 02 Z28 M6, 3.42, Race weight?, 04/05, Stock internals
9. wvutransam - 13.42 @ 103.75 (2.03), 98 Trans Am, 2.73, 3880lbs, 11/05, Stock internals
10. ur jlus -13.595 @ 104.60 (2.069) 02 Z28 A4, 2.73,Race weight?, 11/05, Stock internals
11. quiet_storm98 - 13.77 @ 104.8 (2.2), 98 Z28 M6, 3.42, Race weight?, Date?, Stock internals
12. MiaSSmaro98 - 13.90 @ 100.22 (2.15), 98 SS A4, Gear?, Race weight?, 04/06, Stock internals

Darth Z
11-19-2006, 08:49 PM
Shooter, I didn' t say verts couldn' t be fast. Not so long ago one of the fastest LS1-powered F-bodies, was a vert. George Baxter has a 30th Anniversary SS (LT4-equipped), that used to run 8's. Last I heard though, he was selling that motor, because he wanted 7's. Aything can be made fast with enough time and money. Convertables just aren' t ideal race cars do to unnecessary weight, and they flex and twist more than hard-top cars.

rodrigosantos
11-20-2006, 02:43 AM
I know of a third gen vert show car I saw a bunch of pics of. The guy converted it to vert, from ttop. He had his own body shop though. I don't even think it was crashed then done, I think it was just a 2nd life for his show car. Way done up. don't know what it cost, or what a 4th gen would cost. I imagine probably much easier to sell then buy a vert.

The deal is this, i live in Mexico the only convertible camaro sold here was the 1996 LT1 camaros.

No convertibles for later years f bodys.

FYI : ALL mexican sold f bodys were v-8.

Darth Z
11-20-2006, 08:17 PM
The deal is this, i live in Mexico the only convertible camaro sold here was the 1996 LT1 camaros.

No convertibles for later years f bodys.

FYI : ALL mexican sold f bodys were v-8.

That sucks man, but I still thing it would be cheaper to sell, a hard-top, and by a vert in the states, but I don' t know how much hassle that would befor you either. :confused:

gyrene2003
11-22-2006, 09:56 PM
Well, u guys keep saying thiers a couple 100 extra pounds in a vert, well thats just not true, its under 200, so u figure its like running with a medium build passenger, but that didnt seem so make that much of a difference when i lined up at the track and ran my buddys ss and i beat him 2 out of 3 times and he had catback and lid and i had a friggin k&N air filter, oh and he was a t-top! As far as the flex is concerned, if u really want to bring up that point, ill agree, a vert may have alittle MORE flex then ur standard f-bod, but no f-bod is truly ideal for drag racing in stock form due to the body flex, but really i mean, who leaves their car stock, especially if they track the car, so thats a mute point!

Darth Z
11-22-2006, 10:10 PM
It all depends on what' s most important. Like I said, I don' t mean that verts are bad cars by any means. Some drag racers are more insane in their quest for speed than others. I' ve seen people removing jacks, spare tires, and seats AT the track, just to drop a few measily pounds. In a sitation like that the ideal car would be a hardtop. If maximum performance isn' t the number one concern, then a vert would be awesome. I just personally wouldn' t want one as my daily driver, but would LOVE to have one to drive on days when the weather is awesome. Less hassle than T-tops, and convvertible tops are rarely stolen, and your stupid ass friends can' t unlatch and lose your top, but trying to use an "Oh SHIT" handle in a car that doesn' t have one! :lol: