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Technical What modern donor roof to fill in a 31 Ford coupe HELP

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Dave Huelke, Jan 6, 2019.

  1. Dave Huelke
    Joined: Feb 22, 2016
    Posts: 28

    Dave Huelke

    So I want to fill in my roof but I would like to know what modern car I could use for a donor roof. I live up in SE Michigan so there are really no oldies in junk yards to cut out.

    What have you guys used?

    I'm building a Henry Ford 31 coupe on 32 rails, 40 cross member, 9", 55 caddy 331 with dual quads, T5, 3 inch chop, 32 grill, louvered hood, steelies, pie crust big and littles, 35 dash, SS floors, pleated interior, cross steer.

    What am I doing wrong with the build if you want to comment. sure no one wants to see another 31 build.
  2. F&J
    Joined: Apr 5, 2007
    Posts: 13,222


    What you are doing wrong, is not letting us look at a build thread.. :)
    scrubby2009, Hnstray, Avgas and 5 others like this.
  3. DdoubleD
    Joined: Nov 18, 2009
    Posts: 224

    from Michigan

    Mid 90's minivan?
    samurai mike likes this.
  4. X-cpe
    Joined: Mar 9, 2018
    Posts: 1,096


    Grab a scrap of whatever you have that will reach across and front to back. Cut a template of each curve in it. Then go hunting.
    Just Gary likes this.

  5. Been years since the last model A coupe top we filled but at that time the early mustangs had a nice couture, maybe the newer ones will work. HRP
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2019
  6. ahshoe
    Joined: Sep 12, 2012
    Posts: 797


    65-68 mustang roofs are a dead on contour . Done a couple and have know others that have done this for as long as mustangs have been in salvage yards. They are cheap as about now the roof is about the only part left on a mustang at any old salvage yard.
    falconsprint63 likes this.
  7. I used the top off a large 69 Plymouth sedan. Just because it was free.:rolleyes: I centered it on the top of my 29 model- A coupe. I just kept trimming it down untill it fit. It had a good convex shape. So you don't get that flat top look.;) Ron.....
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2019
  8. boutlaw
    Joined: Apr 30, 2010
    Posts: 1,230


    I used a Maverick roof turned around backwards (72?), worked perfect...65-66 Mustang work as well, I have heard.
  9. continentaljohn
    Joined: Jul 24, 2002
    Posts: 4,797


    I used a 1980s Monte Carlo
  10. 41rodderz
    Joined: Sep 27, 2010
    Posts: 5,385

    from Oregon

    We have a Mustang used/new parts store. Out back he probably has 15/20 of the '60s Mustangs with roofs.
  11. FlyingRN
    Joined: Oct 10, 2018
    Posts: 49


    We used a 80's suburban roof on our '32, has some ribs that kept it strong, yet molded easily to the 32's roofline IMG_20181128_090859_654.jpeg

    Sent from my SM-G960U using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
    Hotrodmyk, Tim, '51 Norm and 7 others like this.
  12. banjeaux bob and FlyingRN like this.
  13. I wouldn't use anything from the 90s on forward if what I was told is true. I had a body repair man tell me that the more modern steel that they used on cars is an alloy and its really difficult to weld properly and doesn't weld to other older steel very well.
    Hnstray and Atwater Mike like this.
  14. Bandit Billy
    Joined: Sep 16, 2014
    Posts: 7,526

    Bandit Billy

    A buddy used a S10 blazer roof with ribs in it. Looks real nice. And there is a lot of them in wrecking yards with no trannys. :cool:
  15. BigChief
    Joined: Jan 14, 2003
    Posts: 2,084


    Ours was started by somebody else in the 70s.....this roof was on it....looks like a wagon or van roof but the ribs start and stop on the A must be a smaller donor.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  16. jvo
    Joined: Nov 11, 2008
    Posts: 227


    I used a 65 f100 roof.
  17. Duke
    Joined: Mar 21, 2001
    Posts: 657


    1970s early 80s square Volvo sedans. Bolt it in and cover it in vinyl. Old look with a solid top.

    Update- I could not get the Volvo roof to fit my29 A coupe. Went with a 65 Mustang coupe roof and it fit perfectly.
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2019
    belair likes this.
  18. 34Phil
    Joined: Sep 12, 2016
    Posts: 273


  19. JWindsor13
    Joined: Oct 25, 2012
    Posts: 318

    from Canada

    Just thought I’d share a pic. I think it’s pretty easy to cut and trim as long as you get the contour that you want. This is my ‘33 with a ‘58 Oldsmobile wagon roof.

    Sent from my iPhone using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
    Shadow Creek, belair and akoutlaw like this.
  20. I would look at full size pickups with an extended cab.
    Tim likes this.
  21. R A Wrench
    Joined: Feb 4, 2007
    Posts: 462

    R A Wrench
    from Denver, Co

    Some years back, a friend was searching for a filler panel for his 32 Plymouth three window. Parts yard search turned up nothing. I had a roof from a 67 Chevy Suburban. We cut off a few feet & he tried that. Worked perfect. Heavy enough metal, good shape, welded up great.
  22. alchemy
    Joined: Sep 27, 2002
    Posts: 16,585


    Ribbed roofs are not traditional, if that's what you are going for. I can't remember a single car feature in an old magazine showing a ribbed roof.
    Atwater Mike likes this.
  23. B Ramsey
    Joined: Mar 29, 2009
    Posts: 643

    B Ramsey

    would the roof from a '62 Fairlane work? I have the car an want it gone. gonna cut it up and scrap it soon.
  24. seb fontana
    Joined: Sep 1, 2005
    Posts: 6,890

    seb fontana
    from ct

    Cut it out and test fit? If it looks good trim to fit; if not then you started to scrap the F'lane..
  25. True, they may not be all that traditional, but to me they sure look good.
    ffr1222k, FlyingRN and TagMan like this.
  26. LOL that's because wagons didn't have ribbed roofs yet.

    I know that it is not "Modern" by todays standards but we used to use mid 50s Ford wagons roofs when I was a kid. Really "modern" automotive sheet metal is hard to work with but mid '50s to early '60s wagons still have real sheet metal in them.
  27. olcurmdgeon
    Joined: Dec 15, 2007
    Posts: 2,229


    The A coupe I built in the 80s, we were searching for a roof filler panel. Went to Junior Bates junk yard in Elliot, ME (for the NE guys) and there was a panel cut out of a '62 Chev hood. Worked great and gave me the two "high speed stablity" ribs to boot. Car is still around now owned by one of the Ring Reckers guys from Amesbury, MA.
  28. Hombre
    Joined: Aug 22, 2008
    Posts: 1,048


    I like the ribbed roofs as well. On my 31 sedan, little more roof to cover, I used the roof off of a BMW wagon. Found it in pick a part and was a perfect fit very little work. IMG_2653.JPG
    ffr1222k and nochop like this.
  29. Eh, I don't know about that. I've done plenty of welding on mid-90's GM sheet metal and it welds just fine, including to the random sheet steel pulled from the scrap bin. No more difficult than old Ford stuff that's been thinned out by 70+ years of surface rust.
    tb33anda3rd, Bugguts and Hombre like this.
  30. BigChief
    Joined: Jan 14, 2003
    Posts: 2,084


    I struggled with a rusty 71 Beetle and what was available for patch panels in the mid 80s. I'll admit I'm short on super powers when it comes to welding but the MIG I had liked one material or the other. It very easily could have been me but the old timers were telling me the alloy used by VW had to be maleable enough to be pressed into shape and could have been much different than the patch panels.

    Sent from my SM-G950U using The H.A.M.B. mobile app

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