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Power Windows for your Convertible
#1
Hi all. Not sure how many convertibles were made without power windows, but it seems like most I see don't have them. Obviously a pain to have a power top but have to go around to the windows to manually wind them down. My car didn't come with power windows either so I started looking at the options, and there are many. Ultimately I chose SPAL kits to do this as I felt they were the least expensive option while still having something modern (not having to fix factory pancake motors is a plusSmile)

So here we go.

First I bought two of these kits:

http://www.a1electric.com/Merchant2/merc...=3300-0030

And this switch kit:

http://www.a1electric.com/Merchant2/merc...egory_Code=

There are lots of options for switch kits and I know this one is a GM style, but I felt it matched the classic look better than most of the others.

Here's what the motors look like installed in the front door, this is the drivers side:

   

   

At first I thought I would put the set of 4 switches for the driver controls in the door panel:

   

   

But after I used it that way for a while, I changed my mind and moved it to the console instead. With the switches installed in the door (the only place I could fit them without cutting the door) they were too hard to reach when the door was closed. Here's the switches installed in the console:

   

   

Here's some shots of the motor install in the rear quarters:

   

   

   

The kits come with templates for trimming the door panels for the covers you have to use to go over the window crank gear. Here's what they look like installed as well as the switch mounts in the other interior panels:

   

   

   

   

   

After having had these for a while I find them very convenient and there have been no real issues. The 4 way switch is a little hard to remember which one controls each window but you get used to it. I don't find that the covers for the window cranks are obtrusive, but I think that is more to do with having changed to a black interior. The covers only come in black so if you have a different colored interior you'd have to paint them.

I would recommend the kit but be warned it is a lot work to find a way to mount the motors, run the wiring, cut the door panel holes, etc, etc. The kit does come with all the hardware to mount everything, but it relies on having pretty flat metal doors. I had to use my imagination and small bits of my own hardware to get the motor side mounted properly. Aside from that I would say these kits are fine and work well.

Greg
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#2
Thanks Greg that looks like a great option.

Power windows and cruise control are on the to do list.

Jeff T.

Low buck, touring style, '73 Convertible "rolling restoration", 351c, 2v heads with a shave and a haircut, Performer intake, Holley 650(ish), roller rockers, screw in studs, guideplates, stainless valves, Duraspark / Motorsports MSD, T-5 conversion. 1-1/8" front, 3/4" rear swaybars KYB shocks and some home brewed subframe connectors. Future plans; JGC steering box, Cobra brakes and... paint, interior, etc.

When I die I want to die like grandpa, peacefully in my sleep... not screaming, like his passenger.

[Image: 1_12_09_14_10_15_11.png]
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#3
Cool mod. I've wished many times over the years my convert had power windows, but I guess I will keep on cranking them.
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#4
Thanks again Greg for your great post, and the very helpfull pics.

Couple of questions if i may -

Firstly, if i wanted to place the new power switch controls over all the existing cut out holes for the winder cranks, could i, or will they cover the original holes in the upholstery or not? I ask because i see you've relocated every power switch position, front and back.

I quite like your idea of locating the main switch panel in the center console for ease of operation as well.

Secondly, could you tell me what you think about the quality of the whole kit/are the motors powerfull enough/ have you had any operational problems with this system at all (windows not going up and down smoothly for instance - swithches playing up - that sort of thing)

So for you, how would you rate this system out of five - five being the best. Any feedback about what i've mentioned above would be greatly appreciated Greg.

Many thanks,


Greg.Smile

whistling LORD, MR FORD - JERRY REED
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#5
Austin Vert;155079 Wrote:Firstly, if i wanted to place the new power switch controls over all the existing cut out holes for the winder cranks, could i, or will they cover the original holes in the upholstery or not? I ask because i see you've relocated every power switch position, front and back.

No, I don't thing you can unless you get a different switch kit. The window cranks protrude into the panels so unless you had something that mounted completely on the outside of the panel, I'd say not possible.


Austin Vert;155079 Wrote:Secondly, could you tell me what you think about the quality of the whole kit/are the motors powerfull enough/ have you had any operational problems with this system at all (windows not going up and down smoothly for instance - swithches playing up - that sort of thing)

The quality is fine. I don't have any issues with raising and lowering any of the windows. I even tightened my door window felts quite a bit and they still have plenty of power to move them. Switches are about like you'd expect for mid 80s GMSmile They work fine and I don't see any reason they wouldn't last for at least 10 years;


Austin Vert;155079 Wrote:So for you, how would you rate this system out of five - five being the best. Any feedback about what i've mentioned above would be greatly appreciated Greg.

Out of 5 I would rate it a 3, but that's only because it requires advanced skill to install. It's not a 1-2-3 instructions bolt on and go. You need to have some idea how to install things like this. I will say the SPAL instructions are really good, and they have some good examples on how to mount things.

Greg
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#6
Many thanks for that Greg.

Based on everything you've said, i will give this product very serious consideration.

Greg.Smile

whistling LORD, MR FORD - JERRY REED
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#7
Yeah, I get your point regarding the power top and having to walk around the car to crank the windows.
I'm so glad mine came with the factory power windows. The upgrade would definitely be on my list if it didn't.

[Image: 1z21rv4.png]

Mike

"If I were you...... I´d rather be me."  Tongue

Check out my video:
http://www.7173mustangs.com/thread-my-mustang-in-action

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#8
Great post, thats on my list but way in the future. I book marked the site and I also appreciate the review type feed back between you and Austin Vert. Thanks for the post
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#9
Any way to leave the factory handles on the shaft? If you also hid the switches inside the console the car would still look absolutely stock.

It would also be somewhat cool to see the handles spin when you rolled the windows up and down.

There was a kit a few years ago that left "handles" on the door panel but turned them into the switch. Pull up window goes up, push down window goes down. They did not work with the factory handle in the factory location.

Thanks for the great post!

Paul
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#10
Paul of MO;155143 Wrote:Any way to leave the factory handles on the shaft? If you also hid the switches inside the console the car would still look absolutely stock.

No, there is no way. The gear mechanism goes over the top of the crank. I suppose you could glue the window crank onSmileSmile

One thing I forgot to mention, the kits come with an emergency handle too. So if power is not working and you need to get the windows up, you just pop the cover off and insert the emergency crank to wind them up/down manually.

Greg
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