Re: Recent windshield gaskets ? ? - Saab Vintage Models Bulletin Board - Saabnet.com
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I recently installed a windshield in my '64 Bullnose. I removed it from a donor car and transferred it over. I used a new gasket from Tom Donney.
I was extremely nervous about the whole installation process, let me tell you- afraid I would break the glass. I queried several VSaab experts and came up with common points based on the "cord" method. Google this method and you'll find a number of videos that show you how.
1. Lay windshield on two saw horses, with inside facing up.
2. Clean windshield around edges- especially important for a used windshield to get rid of all remnants of sealant.
3. Install new gasket on windshield and cut to length. It should err on being slightly long, as the gaskets shrink. Make a nice clean cut with a razor blade.
4. Super glue the ends of the gasket together. Cut should be on the bottom center of the windshield.
5. Carefully press in the lock strip. This can be a bit frustrating, but take your time and work it in, being careful not to bend or distort it in any way. Snap in the end covers after getting both halves completely in.
6. Wrap a strong cord around the windshield, fitting it into the groove where the metal windshield "rim" on the car will fit in. Note there are two grooves on the open edge of the new gasket. One works and the other doesn't. Hard to describe- I got the wrong one first time and tried twice to install it, with no success. I bought the cord at a local hardware store- made of nylon. The cord should go all the way around the windshield and overlap at the bottom, in the middle by a couple of feet.
7. Take a break, have a beverage, deep breathe, pray.
8. Lubricate the windshield gasket and the car opening liberally! Two options- dish soap works great, but can leave a messy residue. Windex is preferred by professionals, as it simply evaporates. But that means you need to keep the bottle handy and continue to re-spray to keep it wet. I used Windex.
9. With the help of a trusted friend, lay the windshield on the car opening and center it the best you can, fitting in the lower edge first and laying it down against the opening.
10. One person inside the car will pull the cords, starting from the bottom, as the other applies light pressure to the windshield from the outside guiding it in. This is the scary part.
11. The cord must be pulled quite hard, especially as it comes around the corners. Wear gloves! You must pull it evenly, meaning start at the bottom center and pulling one side at a time for a few inches, then go to the other side. "Even" is the key and "uneven" means there will be a large chance of cracking the windshield, due to stress on the windshield.
12. As you pull the cord, you're pulling the gasket lip inside, rolling it over the edge of the car's metal opening, starting at the bottom center and going up and around to the top, a few inches at a time as the assistant applies light pressure from the outside. OH! Forget to say to make sure the car lip is clean, free of rust, etc.
13. Spray lubricant liberally as you go. Take your time, don't force, take a break if you need to.
14. The top corners are the toughest. It takes alot of force to pull on the cord. Have the assistant lay his/her hands against the glass from the outside, pulling it down to help guide it.
15. Once in, you now can go around the outside and you may find some areas that aren't seated properly. Apply more lubricant to that area, inside and out. One person inside the car can pull on the gasket in that area, sort of pulling it into the channel, and the other can push against the lock strip on the outside. Hopefully, it will seat better.
16. Once you're happy with the seating, you can run a small bead of windshield sealer up under the lip on the outside of the car, if you like. It's recommended to do that to prevent leaks.
Okay, that's pretty much the basics of it. Once I got the hang of it, and got the cord in the right groove, it wasn't bad. Except I found I cut the gasket TOO long. It bunched up. So I recut it, removing about 0.5 inch and reglued. This was a pain, as I essentially had to start over and reinstall the lock strip.
Feel free to ask any further questions to help clarify.
eric in vermont
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