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Friday, January 25th, 2013

Hardtop Storage

Every R129 Mercedes-Benz SL500 came with a great-looking removable hardtop from the factory, but the hardtop is pretty much pointless in this climate unless the soft-top is broken and you don't feel like having it fixed.

That's why this is one of the two photos in existence of the 500 Benz with its hardtop installed—because I took it off almost immediately...which meant I had to find a place to put it.

Yep, that's the hardtop, chilling under a rather distinctive quilt in my living room.

There's a bit more to this story.

Removing the 75-pound top is definitely a two-man job, so I enlisted the aid of one Johnny Turbo, a fellow automotive journalist who could give you the zero-to-60 time for a 1936 Duesenberg off the top of his head if you needed it.

Once we'd wrestled the top off the car, into the elevator, and up to my apartment—I don't have the original wheeled storage cart, unfortunately, so we had to lift it—I told J.T. that it would fit in one of my closets, no problem.

This is one of the many reasons why I really need to buy a tape measure.

Yeah, it wasn't even close to fitting in the closet. But as I looked around the rest of the place, I remembered that I'd always thought that wall was missing something. So we dragged it across the carpet to its new home, and for good measure, I dressed it up in a Mom-made quilt from my college days that had fallen into disuse. Multiple issues resolved.

My only regret is that it's not easier to throw the top on every now and then, just for a change. I love how the car looks with the hardtop in place, and it would be cool to take a roadtrip sans wind noise from the soft-top. Plus, I hear the hardtop tones down the crazy cowl shake.

We do encounter our share of first-world problems here at 500Benz.com.

posted in: 500Benzlife  


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