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Old 09-22-2013, 01:51 AM   #1
Trusted-1
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Default FS: 318ti Cali Top Complete (California Top)

I have a 318ti Cali top complete and working with motor.

Please look at the photos and check it out working in the youtube link. It is in very nice shape. It is a bit dusty in the photos.

The photos make the headliner look like it has marks but those are just from getting it out of the car and wipe off.

It looks like it has years of life left in it if treated properly.

I'm asking $800 or best offer plus packing and shipping so please PM me.

We are in San Diego so if you want to come see it or pick it up, let me know.

Thanks for looking.

http://youtu.be/6Pcy7x0eUTI




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Old 09-23-2013, 04:12 AM   #2
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Hi
Thanks for posting the detail and youtube on the cali top you're selling. I have a 98 Ti and my calif top is still in pretty good condition with exception of the windscreen - i've been through two, and two motors. Which leads me to my questions about the one you're selling:
-does it have the wind screen/wind deflector included? I didn't see it in the pics or the video.
-i haven't removed my top, but when the time comes does the one you're selling have all of the necessary installation parts/attachments needed?

Thanks in advance - looking forward to your reply ~
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Old 09-23-2013, 05:53 AM   #3
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This is a 1996 model and does not have the wind deflector option.

I have disassembled a different motor/drive unit (we have 2 other Cali Top cars here) and I would venture to say that motor/drive is not as well designed as many other aspects of these cars. Any binding of the track or sliding assembly will lead to premature failure.

I am not sure what you mean by installation parts and attachments. It is suitable replacement for a car that has one of these tops.

IMO, it is not suitable to install in a car that was not originally equipped with a Cali top if that was the question.

Thanks for looking.
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Old 09-23-2013, 06:29 PM   #4
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If you have any if the motors for the Cali top I'll but it ASAP!


~1997 mustang cobra
~1997 BMW M3 sedan
-1996 BMW 318ti California roof
-2005 pontiac vibe
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Old 09-23-2013, 09:32 PM   #5
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No spare motors on hand but we have had success restoring operation to one of the other motor/drives here on one of the Cali cars.

Is yours having the common issue of clicking but not moving the top?

If so, you could ship it to us and we could see if it can be sorted out.

If anyone has any of the Cali Top motors that are not working, I'd be interested in acquiring them to see if any of them can be salvaged.

Thanks, Steve
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Old 09-23-2013, 09:38 PM   #6
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Yes it's that same issue, I actually took it apart myself and it's the plastic tooth gear that's stripped. Motor spins fine and the top skids back and forth fine as well, it's just not getting any traction because if the gear being stripped


~1997 mustang cobra
~1997 BMW M3 sedan
-1996 BMW 318ti California roof
-2005 pontiac vibe
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Old 09-23-2013, 09:55 PM   #7
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Making those gears seems like the perfect job for a 3D printer...

Did you take any photos of the gears when you had it apart?
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Old 09-23-2013, 09:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trusted-1 View Post
Making those gears seems like the perfect job for a 3D printer...

Did you take any photos of the gears when you had it apart?
I had inquired with a company to reproduce those gears.
The tooling is expensive with a very small return since there aren't that many California tops out there.
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Old 09-23-2013, 09:59 PM   #9
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I never took any pics but I wouldn't mind taking it apart again and sending them to you


~1997 mustang cobra
~1997 BMW M3 sedan
-1996 BMW 318ti California roof
-2005 pontiac vibe
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Old 09-23-2013, 10:48 PM   #10
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Ok so picture by picture here is the motor and each step of disassembly.
flip it over and here is the back after you take the plate cover off you will see the gears here are the gears taken out
And here is the major problem that all California top owners face/will eventually will face

Notice the bottom gear is for the most part smooth around the diameter and should have the teeth there. However over time the teeth get worn down by the metal gear it's meshed with. So that's our dilemma, either replace the motor or figure out a solution to this gear issue. Century BMW of greenville SC quoted me 495.75 for the motor and that's just too much when my motor works fine.


~1997 mustang cobra
~1997 BMW M3 sedan
-1996 BMW 318ti California roof
-2005 pontiac vibe
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:15 PM   #11
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The one we disassembled had a different issue.

The worm gear wore through a section but the lower gear was intact and not worn like yours looks (and it still had all the teeth too).

If it is possible to reproduce with a 3D printer in a suitable material, the cost may be low enough to be practical.

Still a lot of if's though.
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Old 09-24-2013, 12:11 AM   #12
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True and what all would you require for a 3d printing of the tooth gear?


~1997 mustang cobra
~1997 BMW M3 sedan
-1996 BMW 318ti California roof
-2005 pontiac vibe
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Old 09-24-2013, 01:35 AM   #13
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I will have to check it out.

Some of the trade magazines I get make it seem like at some point everyone will have a 3D printer and you will just be able to make your own spare parts at home... I don't know how far off that is but for a "hobby shopper" is sounds pretty cool.

I passed a do it yourself machine shop place the other day that I had never seen before. I will make a point of stopping in there to see what facilities they have available.

Within the last year or so I found a place that would CNC machine to a DIY spec and they had their own software for creating the plan/part template.

I was looking to do a COP kit for the M44 but it was the same cost as someone selling them for already done. But not a bad price for a custom part CNC'd.
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Old 09-27-2013, 10:48 PM   #14
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Default cali top wind deflector

Ok - thanks for the info - much appreciated.

Just to clarify - i have a 98 ti with a cali top - i've noticed on the 97-98 that the wind deflector is a pop up screen. While on the earlier models - i've seen a plastic lip that pops up to minimize the wind noise.

Either way - i've found that the wind noise is significant w/o this piece.

Thanks again - good luck on the sale of the roof ~
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Old 10-12-2013, 01:58 AM   #15
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My cali top has never worked. Owned the car for about 10 years now. When I press the button to roll it back I can hear the motor work but the top doesn't move. I suspect it might be the gear that is worn (which I believe is the common problem with these tops). I would love to get this fixed for a reasonable price.
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