volvoclearinghouse SuperDork
3/31/16 6:46 a.m.

Sprucing up my 1980 Mercedes 450SL for springtime, I noticed the canvas convertible top has a small tear in it, about 1" long. The rest of the top, windows, etc is in great shape. Does anyone have any experience with a canvas top repair? The one tricky bit- it's a sort of dark blue color. A lot of the patch kits I'm seeing on google are either black or gray.


foxtrapper UltimaDork
3/31/16 6:58 a.m.

Did the patch repair on my Snaab's black canvas top. Good quality canvas fabric. Even aligned the fibers. It was all but invisible when I was done.

By next week, it was brilliant grey. In a month, it was almost white. It was also pulling up on the leading edge.

I've re-dyed it several times (shoe dye seems to hold the longest, a few weeks). The patch is glaringly obvious, and there is really nothing I can do to improve it.

As a bonus the iron left shiny spots on the fabric top around the iron-on patch that are still shiny to this day.

Would I do it again? No. I'd try something else. Not sure what, but something else. Or at least leave the proposed fabric patch out in the sun for a month to see if it really is color fast.

volvoclearinghouse SuperDork
3/31/16 1:41 p.m.

I'm thinking about just buying some canvas and patching it with an adhesive from the inside, so it's not visible.

foxtrapper UltimaDork
3/31/16 1:47 p.m.

Rather wish I'd have done it from the inside as well.

Look up Tear-Aid and see what you think. If you like it, they sell the Type A (for fabric) at Dicks there in Westminster.

If you use it, please let us/me know how it goes.

Spoolpigeon UberDork
3/31/16 2:06 p.m.

Go from the inside of possible, unless it's a temporary fix to hold you over until a new top is put on.

I did the iron on ones on my s2000 and had the same problem above: the patches faded quickly and I had big shiney spots from the iron. Ugly, but it worked for a few months until I bought a new top.

volvoclearinghouse SuperDork
3/31/16 9:46 p.m.

In reply to foxtrapper:

Will do. I'm actually looking to sell the car this year, but want to patch up the top right. It's just a small tear, it honestly doesn't seem to leak even.

djsilver Reader
3/31/16 10:49 p.m.

My '03 S2K top is on it's last legs. I know it won't last long so I used contact cement to attach iron on knee patches on the inside. I have three 1" tears. I used polyester thread and sewed them closed. It adds character....,

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