I had to take apart the bows on my 2015 Vintage Speedster. But now that I’m going to reassemble them I’m not sure where the black adjuster lever (which pushes up the rear bow) goes.

It can either be between the metal cone-shaped base and the front bow, or between the two bows. I think it’s the first (see photo), but I want to be sure.

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When I was rummaging in my shop for something I found a stash of 6 - 8 of those cones and thought;  "Wow! Didn't even know I had those!" and then put them away.  Now, I can't remember where I saw them.   

wombat posted:

I had to take apart the bows on my 2015 Vintage Speedster. But now that I’m going to reassemble them I’m not sure where the black adjuster lever (which pushes up the rear bow) goes.

It can either be between the metal cone-shaped base and the front bow, or between the two bows. I think it’s the first (see photo), but I want to be sure.

The photo is correct. I also confirmed it on my VS built car.

I always thought those cones were a little "Cheesy" so I made a couple out of aluminum, drilled and threaded them, and drilled two holes for a spanner wrench to hold them while I tightened the bolt out in the fender well. This way they can be tightened adequately without binding the bow assembly. If the bolts are shortened a little, the pretty acorn nuts can be tightened until the bottom out without binding up the bow connected to it. They look nicer all polished and match the finish of the acorn nuts............Bruce

Wombat.....I don't have photos on this computer. I'm in Mexico for a while but I drew a picture of what it looks like for you and just took a phone picture of it so here it is. Also I sold my Speedster last year. I made them out of aluminum and polished them up to look nice. The plus is that it became a nice tightly mounted stud on which to attach the bows instead of a bolt all the way thru the fiberglass on which the whole mechanism  was dependent on being a sandwiched between the bolt head and the acorn nut. Just a more thorough way of mounting and you never have to hold that bolt head out under the fender whenever an adjustment was made. Also the "cone washer" never gets flattened out with more tightening.

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Wombat.......,I made the spanner holes to match the spanner wrench I have for my Mikita angle grinder so I always have one around that fits nicely.

It works better if you drill the holes all the way thru from the backside of the cone. This gives you a flat entry for your drill as opposed to trying to drill them at an angle on the cone side............Bruce

Brilliant idea with the threaded rod ends. What size, how did you secure them in the bows, and where did you get them? I'm lowering the bows for a new top and these would be perfect to get the exact heights.  

My bows are stainless steel from Vintage Speedsters.  I made threaded inserts from 1/2" OD aluminum round bar.  They are about 1 3/8" overall length with 1" of length turned down to 7/16" diameter.  The 1" long, 7/16" diameter slips into the inside diameter of the bow tubing.  The inserts are drilled thru and tapped 5/16-18NC for the rod ends.  I epoxied them into the bows using JB Weld.

The rod ends are 5/16" stainless steel rod ends from McMaster-Carr (not Heim style rod ends, although they could be used)

https://www.mcmaster.com/2434k37

Align the hole in the rod end with the existing hole in the bow, leaving room for adjustment, mark and cut the bow, deburr and install the threaded insert with the JB Weld.

Hope this makes sense!  

James

One last question from you top-frame experts:

My front bow is way wider than the rear, and has to be forcefully compressed to get the mounting bolts in. Are yours like this? Is there a reason for this? Any issues if I reduce the width slightly?

I had to massage the front bow to fit also.  I used the shape around the rear storage area as a guide.  With my top folded down, both bows will fall down inside the rear storage area by a few inches.  This makes storage very neat and easy to cover with a tonneau.

Since my front bow is too wide I was thinking of taking a small chunk out of the flat top section, rather than trying to re-bend the bow--(as putting symmetrical smooth curves in tubing can be risky). 

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