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E46 Convertible
The E46 vert forum. Talk about dropping your E46 top here.

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Old 05-27-2015, 03:43 PM   #21
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Looking at the original cited post (well done Avneet!!), it looks like from his shots he didn't take the latches off? Just did the repair in place? Is that advisable and if so, better/faster/easier? Just a thought.

Thanks!
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Old 05-27-2015, 07:34 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by raichean View Post
Looking at the original cited post (well done Avneet!!), it looks like from his shots he didn't take the latches off? Just did the repair in place? Is that advisable and if so, better/faster/easier? Just a thought.

Thanks!
Yes. I never took them off. Just restrengthened the cracks with cement putty. Too date I've had no issues with the latches breaking (since the date I posted the original). Not sure if it's advisable or not. Definitely not the best way to do it.
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Old 05-27-2015, 09:51 PM   #23
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Thanks.. just figuring out options and the rest. The bolt technique looks amazing, and I still need to double check if mine are actually cracked or its the motor cover instead. Thank you!
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Old 05-29-2015, 04:38 PM   #24
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Both of mine were cracked in several places. I did a combination of the two guides though. I reinforced the assemblies with epoxy and bolts, but also didn't take them off. Figured if I could do the same work on them without going through that extra off and back on, it would be better in the long run especially in time. I was also able to get the cover off without taking off the liner as well. I loosened the t20 torx at either end and the whole thing just slid off, and right back on without having to do the 4 in the middle. Figure I got lucky.

Epoxy is curing now, happy to get this done!
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Old 06-11-2015, 08:49 PM   #25
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I have this problem with my 02 335ci too. I got my cover off and I can see wherr both of mine are broken. I decided to order plasti-aid as recommended by another member on this thread. Ive used epoxy putty before for other things and its a good product. My question is this : I want to disassemble my latches so that I can do the top portion, how do I get the gears off to do this? Also, I seem to have gotten both sides of my top front struts off track, does anyone know how to realign them?
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Old 06-11-2015, 08:54 PM   #26
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Just for the "purists". I made a type O. I have a 02 325 ci not 335.. lol .. Also I noticed that you used bolts later on, did the epoxy eventuall give? I also noticed that there are holes in the latch assembly making bolts probably the best fix? If I can get help on how to take the latches off I would attempt to bolt mine.
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Old 06-11-2015, 08:58 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by Juhan View Post
I have this problem with my 02 335ci too. I got my cover off and I can see wherr both of mine are broken. I decided to order plasti-aid as recommended by another member on this thread. Ive used epoxy putty before for other things and its a good product. My question is this : I want to disassemble my latches so that I can do the top portion, how do I get the gears off to do this? Also, I seem to have gotten both sides of my top front struts off track, does anyone know how to realign them?
here are few more pics too add for reference for anyone
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Old 06-12-2015, 05:53 PM   #28
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sorry for flooding this thread with my comments. for some reason I didn't see the great work and great pics at the beginning of this thread?! Thanks so much guys!
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Old 06-13-2015, 11:38 AM   #29
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sorry for flooding this thread with my comments. for some reason I didn't see the great work and great pics at the beginning of this thread?! Thanks so much guys!
No worries. Thanks for adding more pics, they'll help people that need to cut the cover open.

I hope you used bolts plus epoxy, the combination is a much stronger repair.
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Old 06-28-2015, 07:55 AM   #30
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broken cable the moves latch

This thread is gold! I removed the cover and found that my plastic pieces were completely sheared off on both sides. I believe I can fix them with the screws/epoxy method but I there is another problem. When I turn the hand crank in the middle of the windshield, the cables turn where they connnect to the middle but they are not turning at the latch end. Are these cables replacable? Or am I SOL. The attached pictures show the broken latch and the messed up cable on one side.
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File Type: pdf Broken Top Latch.pdf (2.49 MB, 349 views)
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Old 06-28-2015, 09:33 AM   #31
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Originally Posted by jack1657 View Post
This thread is gold! I removed the cover and found that my plastic pieces were completely sheared off on both sides. I believe I can fix them with the screws/epoxy method but I there is another problem. When I turn the hand crank in the middle of the windshield, the cables turn where they connnect to the middle but they are not turning at the latch end. Are these cables replacable? Or am I SOL. The attached pictures show the broken latch and the messed up cable on one side.
Hi. I just did the same job to my 325ci a week ago, following the instructions from this thread. It works and is better than new afterwards. Your latch driveshaft gears are probably wornout, broken or stripped. You can get used and new ones on ebay. The price range is $50 -$125 depending on the condition and depending on the seller. I used the bolts and then I used epoxy putty even though I ordered plasti-aid from Amazon as told by guys on this thread. I was already familar with epoxy putty and it works great !

Last edited by Juhan; 07-22-2016 at 08:02 AM.
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Old 07-03-2015, 07:09 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by jack1657 View Post
This thread is gold! I removed the cover and found that my plastic pieces were completely sheared off on both sides. I believe I can fix them with the screws/epoxy method but I there is another problem. When I turn the hand crank in the middle of the windshield, the cables turn where they connnect to the middle but they are not turning at the latch end. Are these cables replacable? Or am I SOL. The attached pictures show the broken latch and the messed up cable on one side.
The "cables" are called "rods" afaik, and are known to break. They are replaceable, they just pop off. Check realoem.com for a part number.

The latches look salvageable... Use lots of glue or epoxy!
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Old 07-07-2015, 12:30 PM   #33
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Good news, someone was able to access the broken latches without cutting the cover!

https://forum.e46fanatics.com/showpos...9&postcount=34
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Old 07-09-2015, 09:02 PM   #34
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Well, after struggling with the thousand bolts holding on the cover, I was able to expose my latch mechanism and determined that the composite "nut" that sets the latches has, well, exploded into about 6 pieces. Fortunately I have all the pieces and have begun the process of reassembling them with epoxy prior to drilling the holes for the two bolts. I am using 6 hour cure epoxy for greater strength. This was the passenger side latch. I suppose I really should look at the left side one just in case.

Just in case this doesn't work due to the extreme damage, I noticed on Ebay that a Turkish company is making and selling a replacement actuator slide with composite nut mounted on it. They are selling the set for $220.00. This is a lot cheaper than replacing both latches. From the pictures the parts look good. Has anyone tried this option and how did it work out?
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Old 07-10-2015, 11:56 AM   #35
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Just in case this doesn't work due to the extreme damage, I noticed on Ebay that a Turkish company is making and selling a replacement actuator slide with composite nut mounted on it. They are selling the set for $220.00. This is a lot cheaper than replacing both latches. From the pictures the parts look good. Has anyone tried this option and how did it work out?
Link for anyone looking for another option: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Roof-Lock-La...-/321535814223

The composite parts look a bit different, so hopefully they are stronger. I still prefer my fix, especially if you do it as preventative maintenance like I did.
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Old 07-12-2015, 04:40 PM   #36
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The "cables" are called "rods" afaik, and are known to break. They are replaceable, they just pop off. Check realoem.com for a part number.

The latches look salvageable... Use lots of glue or epoxy!

Found the "rods" for about $36 new. Went through the repair and the mechanism works. I used Q-Bond and it worked vey well. I did tear the rubber gasket gettint the cover off so I'm also fixing that. When completely finished I'll post some pictures.
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Old 07-12-2015, 05:45 PM   #37
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Repaired front latches but top still won't work.

My repair using the suggested epoxy and bolts worked for both my left and right latch. I now have a functioning locking mechanism, including the motor drive which I tested by applying 12 vdc to the motor after it was all assembled.

Below is a link to a short video I made of the latch mechanism. I used a drill to rotate the flexible "shaft". You can see the operation of the mechanism.




My problem now is that the top still won't operate. The latch mechanisms were totally broken and not functioning and that is now fixed. I checked the continuity of the wires from the Hall sensors on the latch and they are good.

Biggest problem is that the symptoms keep changing and it is driving me nuts. The last symptom I saw was the rear deck would begin to open and then started to bounce!

Unfortunately I had to quit for the night because my battery dropped to low to do anything so I will put a charger on it and continue tomorrow.

There is one thing I really need to know. The latch mechanism for the rear deck cover doesn't seem to be working and I would like to hear any thoughts on how the latch mechanism is operated. Also, the gear motor located under the rear seat has two cables coming out the front. Where do those cables go? I'm trying to build a knowledge base in my mind and any help is much appreciated.
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Old 07-12-2015, 06:11 PM   #38
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The Start Here thread has links to ways to repair the motor under the rear seat, and the main hydraulic cylinders DIY shows how to remove the latches for the storage lid and how the cables are routed.

I would start by storing the roof in the storage area, rest the lid on top, then press the open button. This will lock the lid, putting the motor in the correct position. Then press the open button and hopefully it all works. If it doesn't please start a new thread, let's keep this one just for the front latches.
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Old 03-07-2016, 01:56 AM   #39
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I found out you can buy the piece that breaks. They are called "vsr8-9 latches".
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Old 03-07-2016, 09:37 AM   #40
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I found out you can buy the piece that breaks. They are called "vsr8-9 latches".
Good find! Have you tried them?

I checked eBay... $220 for both sides! ouch! although better than $7-800 for the entire latch.
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