Original soft top?

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nzkiwi
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2018 2:31 pm

Original soft top?

Post by nzkiwi » Thu Oct 10, 2019 2:19 pm

I have a 1957 Thunderbird gunmetal gray with the black convertible top. I finally pulled out the top for the first time and was wondering if it is the original soft top? On the plastic window it has the following stamped on it "Regalite AS-GM-1 L-96". Any help on this would be appreciated. If I need to look for some other identifying number let me know. Dan Brown

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Alan H. Tast
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Joined: Wed Aug 20, 2003 10:52 pm
Location: Omaha, NE

Re: Original soft top?

Post by Alan H. Tast » Thu Oct 10, 2019 3:30 pm

Based on the code 'L-96' I assume it was made in late 1996 (probably November if the letter/month sequence of A=Jan, B=Feb, etc. skipping 'I' and using J for Sept, K= Oct, L=Nov, M=Dec), so, no - not original (at least for the clear vinyl rear window) to the best of my knowledge.
Alan H. Tast, AIA
Technical Director/Past President,
Vintage Thunderbird Club Int'l.
Author, "Thunderbird 1955-1966" & "Thunderbird 50 Years"
1963 Hardtop & 1963 Sports Roadster

nzkiwi
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2018 2:31 pm

Re: Original soft top?

Post by nzkiwi » Thu Oct 10, 2019 6:00 pm

Alan,
Thanks for your quick reply. I saw a similar question on a different car but was a Regalite top with similar markings. He explained that the first letter, "L" in my case is indeed the month of November. The second is the day which is a "9" in my case. So far November 9. Then he explains the last number is last digit of the year. So the possibility looks like mine being November 9, 1956. Since my car has a build code of May this could line up pretty closely. My top looks very old and appears a lot older then 20 years old. What do you think or are you pretty sure about your decode? Again, thanks.
Dan

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Alan H. Tast
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Joined: Wed Aug 20, 2003 10:52 pm
Location: Omaha, NE

Re: Original soft top?

Post by Alan H. Tast » Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:15 pm

Post photos.
Alan H. Tast, AIA
Technical Director/Past President,
Vintage Thunderbird Club Int'l.
Author, "Thunderbird 1955-1966" & "Thunderbird 50 Years"
1963 Hardtop & 1963 Sports Roadster

nzkiwi
Posts: 6
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2018 2:31 pm

Re: Original soft top?

Post by nzkiwi » Fri Oct 11, 2019 1:19 pm

Al,
Thanks. I put the Thuderbird away for winter storage last week. I should have taken pictures when I had it out. Anyway, we can take another look come spring next year. Thanks again. Dan

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