Pop Top Billowing ('68-'73 Westfalia)

by Fred Stoermer

Poptop tiedowns for a '68-73 Westy

I specifically recommended using nylon luggage straps. The ones I've used for years are 1" nylon, with plastic-coated gutter hooks and a solid nylon adjustable buckle closure.

I place one strap over the poptop so the hooks are just at the top rear corner of the front doors. This places the strap in the existing crosswise groove of the fiberglass poptop so it can't shift back and forth when agitated by the slipstream and crosswinds.

The second strap is placed so the gutter hooks are at the top rear corner of the sliding door opening/"seam".

The nylon straps have a certain amount of elasticity. They can be snugged tight, "preloading" the strap tension, and guaranteeing that the poptop won't flutter or "work" in the slipstream or nasty crosswinds. Because the buckles are quick-release, it just takes a moment to remove the straps when you want to raise the poptop.

Before we started doing this, even with brand-new inside hold-downs and the front hinge assembly/hardware in perfect order the poptop would still shift around in the slipstream/wind. When the wind gets under the top it also works on the canvas.

After a highway run of a few hours the left rear portion of the canvas used to be hanging down loose above the rear seat. After we started using the outside straps this was no longer a problem. Obviously, the outside straps secure the poptop very well and prevent even strong wind gusts from affecting the position of the poptop and the canvas.

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