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Glass Installation Final Steps


Proper installation of the glass into the windshield, rear window and side window frames requires the use of a variety of setting tape sizes and techniques.  Shown here by Sanders Reproduction Glass is the installation of glass in a vent window and the trick to installing the rubber seal at the bottom and sides of a deuce roadster windshield.

Setting Tapes:  A variety of thicknesses of setting tape are needed to install glass into the track of a windshield or window frame.  It’s called tape because of its shape but it actually has no adhesive on it.  It takes up the gap between the glass and frame and cushions the glass insulating it from damage.

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Determining Tape Size:  Selecting the correct size tape to use is the first step in the process.  Size of the gap will vary from vehicle to vehicle so the process is one of trial and error.  Select a sample piece of tape and trial fit it in the track with the glass pane or a small scrap segment if you have one to work with.

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Fitting the Tape to Glass:  The tape has no adhesive so it needs to be secured around the edge of the glass before fitting into the frame.  The installation in the track is much easier and uniform if it is trimmed to go around the corners and secured to the glass with this electrical tape

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Installing Glass in the Track:  The glass with the tape held in place is pushed into the track.  If the correct thickness of tape has been selected it should go into the track with moderate pressure.  Some liquid dish soap like Dawn can be used as a lubricant to ease this process.  If it takes too much muscle to force it in then a thinner tape should be used

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Trimming the Tape:  Once the glass is seated in the track the fitting tape is trimmed with a razor knife or razor blade.  The electrical tape remains in the track and is used because it is so thin that it has no effect on the seating of the glass.  Make the cut with a slight angle away from the frame so that there is a clean edge around the glass without tape showing along the edge of the frame.  A small detail but it creates a cleaner looking installation

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Installing the weather seal:  On early open cars the gap between the windshield and the body was usually sealed with a flexible rubber strip that fit into a T-shaped track in the windshield frame.  Getting it into the T-shaped track can be quite a challenge sometimes.  Sanders Reproduction Glass does this using a lot of muscle and patience to install it without destroying the seal.  They coat the seal with some liquid soap like Dawn and insert the one side of the T into the track on the frame.

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Completing the Seal Installation:  With one side of the T in the track a tool like this paint scraper is used to carefully guide the other side into the track.  It’s a slow process but with care and lots of patience the seal can be coaxed into the track.  You might be tempted to try starting at the end of the frame and sliding the seal into the track.  This works for a short distance but the friction between the track and the rubber seal is too much to overcome.  I found this out trying to install a seal in my Deuce roadster windshield, and never could get it in until I used this technique.

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We want to thank the fine people at Sanders RePro Glass in Washington for giving us a peek at the behind the scenes work that goes into the glass work that they do.



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