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I am Samuel Harvey, an A-level student at Leicester Grammar School. For my Design and Technology major project I am making a device which can lift and store hard top(s) for convertible cars. Please take the time to answer my questions regarding storage for your hard top. Even if you don’t have a hard top the information given will still be useful to me.

1. Where do you store the hard top when it is not on the car?

2. Do you currently have a product which holds a hard top such as a bag or metal frame?

3. How many people do you need to remove the hard top?

4. Would you prefer a winch system which can lift the hard top off the car for you?

5. Roughly, how high is the ceiling of the room in which you store your hard top?

6. Would you like the hard top storage device to be moveable or fixed?

7. Realistically, how much would you be prepared to spend on a hard top storage device?

Any replies would be greatly appreciated as would any further comments or ideas you might have.
Thanks
Samuel.
 

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Hi mate,

It takes 2 people to lift my hard top off, storage is a nightmare and usually on the floor in the garage taking up alot of floor space, i dont have a stand for it, having it suspended would be good as long at is safe, it wouldnt really bother me whether you could move it around or not and i would pay a good couple of hundred quid to ensure its safe and takes up less space cos generally i store it for 7 months of the year.

Think that answers most of your questions! Good luck with your project :thumbsup

Gary
 

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Hi Sam,

Not got a bmw convertible but I've filled out below for our VX220 hard top. Plus my degree was industrial design, so I've been there, it's good to get feedback!

1. Where do you store the hard top when it is not on the car?

on a purpose built 'shelf' that is suspended from the ceiling.

2. Do you currently have a product which holds a hard top such as a bag or metal frame?

stowage bag that came with hard-top panel

3. How many people do you need to remove the hard top?

One

4. Would you prefer a winch system which can lift the hard top off the car for you?

No benefit

5. Roughly, how high is the ceiling of the room in which you store your hard top?

ten feet

6. Would you like the hard top storage device to be moveable or fixed?

moveable

7. Realistically, how much would you be prepared to spend on a hard top storage device?

Would depend entirely on the benefits it offered. The shelf mine lives on is the perfect height and size and cost nothing as I had the bits of wood lying around. However with the hard panel on the VX220 costing a thousand pounds, with those on 'roadsters' (eg the Z3 hardtop) costing even more, I could see £100-250 being a fair price range - again, depending on quality, robustness, ability to protect the hard top when not on the car, and security of storage.

I would suggest that you're better off focusing on the removal than the storage as the one man removal issue is a more difficult one for the car owner to remedy than arranging a way to store it. I'm sure you've got plenty of varied ideas on how to do it though! Have fun!
 
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