North American Turbocoupe Organization



1983-6 Cougar/Thunderbird Dew Wipe Replacement
86 XR7 5spd Offline
Senior Member
#1
1983-6 Cougar/Thunderbird
BeltLine Moulding / Dew Wipe R&R

Difficulty: Medium
Time Required: ~3 hours per side

For starters, here is an example the of old cracked dew-wipe on my 95k mile '86 XR7:

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f181322655.jpg[/image]

For the replacement seals,
I ordered Fairchild 1369-4x2 (pack of 2) "Belt weatherstrip/Window Scraper Seal" from rockauto for <$30 + S&H

The tools you will need:

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f18277fc54.jpg[/image]

- drill with bit(s) sized to your rivets (3/32" &/or 1/8")
- tin snips
- 1/4" ratchet, short extension, 10mm & 3/8" sockets
- Dremel tool with cut-off wheel attachment & (a bunch of) cut-off wheels
- #2 Phillips & couple 'regular' screwdrivers
- rivet gun & rivets (I mainly used 3/32" x 5/16")
- Sharpie pen (I used purple to mark on the black)
- safety equipment for eyes, ears, and dust

1. Remove door mirror interior trim bit;
remove screw then wiggle trim up out from under door panel.

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f181a93e64.jpg[/image]

Now remove (3) 10mm nuts holding mirror on.
Slide mirror out from door.
On this side (passenger) the foam gasket stayed stuck to the door;
on the drivers side it stayed stuck to the mirror..

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f181d17560.jpg[/image]

Gently remove the gasket to yield a hidden Phillips screw (remove).
The trim has a 'break' in it to allow passing the power-mirror wires thru.
Do that as shown here:

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f181e097a6.jpg[/image]

2. Remove B-pillar moulding;
This is mounted with 2 spring-wire clips in front, and 4-5 plastic retainer clips in the back.
There is probably a special tool for removal,
but I gently worked/slid the trim rearward against the spring clips until the trim cleared the rear retainer clips.

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f1815929a4.jpg[/image]

3. Open door and remove 3/8" 'body nut' holding the rear portion of beltline molding down.

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f181b70821.jpg[/image]

Now, To remove the moulding, roll the window all the way down, start in the middle of the door,
with both hands shove fingers down next to window, grab the moulding and wiggle/work upward.
This will take some effort and the old dew wipe may start crumbling in yur grasp..
after some work you can feel it loosening and lifting.
Once it has been loosed some, move to the rear side of the molding and commenced to work it loose from back to front.
Gently & gradually lift (the rear) & pivot (at the front) the moulding for it is 'hinged' at front to the A-pillar trim.

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f18237731d.jpg[/image]

By continuing to pivot the molding you can release it from under the A-pillar trim:

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f1821b8504.jpg[/image]

Whew ! that was fun. These first three steps took me 15 minute. The work has only begun ..

4. Use a Sharpie to lay out yur cut lines:
You will be removing just the 'wipe' portion of the existing assembly,
and leaving the portion containing the mounting staples, body clips, and window guide.

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f181f6ef22.jpg[/image]


[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f18216e930.jpg[/image]

5. Use Dremel with cut-off wheel to separate.
Please wear eye protection!
You may wish to also have sound protection or headphones for music (this is the long boring part) and a dust-mask (it's dirty).
After an hour and 15-20 cut-off wheels you should have:

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f18268f579.jpg[/image]

I forgot to get a picture,
but I added 2 rivets to the remaining moulding portion where the dissection had left a bit unsupported.

6. Lay the new dew wipe out onto the moulding;
Use Sharpie to mark, then snips & Dremel to cut 'reliefs' for the body clips and window guide.
The snips were deforming the new dew wipe, so resorted to using the Dremel for the 'horizontal' cuts.

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f182abf9c4.jpg[/image]

7. Lay the new dew wipe back on the moulding, and drill & rivet together.

Generally you want to use the "shortest" rivets you can,
to minimize the leftover on the backside which can potentially interfere with re-assembly.
I used 3/32" diameter x 5/16" long for most of these. A couple places there were 3 layers so I used a 3/8" long rivet.

You'll note the bottom of the new dew wipe *between the clips* does 'overlap' a portion of the old,
but the area around the body clips and window bumper should not overlap.

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f182daa5f0.jpg[/image]

8. Re-assembly is the reverse of removal. Wink
Before reassembly, clean the portions of the window which are concealed under the moulding.
I also cleaned and waxed both sides of the window to allow easier movement against the now snugger dew wipe.

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f182c356d1.jpg[/image]

[image]https://i.imgsafe.org/f181277270.jpg[/image]

Not perfect. But WAY better !
Ah the feel of the supple felt-flocked rubber under your forearm..

I suppose some trim adhesive or more rivets could be used to eliminate some of the 'pucker',
but no-one but me & you will ever notice that..
David T
T5 / ported E3 / .63 / 35# / K&N
2.5" exhaust w/ cherry bomb
30+ mpg! 8.2 0-60, [email protected] 1/4 (gTech)
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jmthunderbirdturbo Offline
Posting Freak
#2
nice write up!

-J0N
APRIL 2018 - LOOKING FOR A NEW CAR. PM me if you have an 87-88 roller or cheap TF for sale.
1988 TC 5MT-Blue/Blue check-off car. resto-project.
2006 Honda Odyssey 5AT, baby-mobile.
2013 F-150, 5.0, 6AT, 4x4, snow white paint.
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Jeff K Offline
Administrator
#3
Awesome write up!!
Jeff Korn

88 Turbo Coupe: Intake and exhaust mods, T3 turbo at 24 psi, forced air IC, water injection, BPV, Ranger cam, subframes, etc., etc.
86 Tbird 5.0 (original owner): intake, exhaust, valvetrain mods, 100 HP N2O, ignition, gears, suspension, etc., etc.
05 Taurus SEL Duratec daily driver
04 Taurus Duratec (wifes car)
02 Pontiac Grand Prix GT
95 Taurus GL Vulcan winter beater
67 Honda 450 Super Sport - completely customized
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Pete D Offline
Administrator
#4
Great article! Thanks.
Pete Dunham


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Puchrider Offline
Member
#5
Awesome write-up! Thank-you for providing this! I like your mention of being able to rest your forearm on the door because I thought about doing it the other day but didn't want to because: 1) dry-rotter dew-wipes aren't the most comfortable thing in the world and 2) I didn't want to chip any more pieces off! Haha


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~Puchrider~

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1986 Turbo-Coupe- 3rd Owner
1995 BMW 325is- Daily
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Not B Anymore Offline
Administrator
#6
This article is going to become a permanent fixture of the new Tech Articles section!
Brian Leavitt
'86 TC 5-Speed -- MS2x w/COP | 83 lb. injectors | T3/T4 50 Trim Stage 3 .63AR | Full 3" Exhaust - No Cat | Motorsport FMIC | Ranger Roller | Ported E6 | Walbro 255HP | Kirban | 20psi | 120-amp 3G | 8.8" 3.55 rear | '03 Cobra Wheels
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