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Chrome strip removal......How to?

October 23 2008 at 4:28 PM

My next step is to remove the strips from the back and the front around the windows. I don't want to bend or ding it up. I just need it off to do body work and prep for paint....As always Thanks to all.......Bob

PS any tricks to remove the windshield without cracking it(to check for rust). Also any thoughts of a lexan rear window (cheap way to lose weight and get rid of the rear window defroster)?

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Re: Chrome strip removal......How to?

October 23 2008, 4:54 PM 

I actually removed my x's windsheild today!
How detailed do you need? The short answer is an exacto knife, some piano wire (NOT guitar strings), 2pairs of vice grips and a delicate touch. It's not a big job, I think it only took me about a 1/2hour to complete by myself.

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Glen Were you able to save the gasket?

October 24 2008, 1:10 PM 

I am not sure if you can get a replacement. Also how did you remove the chrome strip around it. Is it glued on....Thanks, Bob

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save the gasket

October 25 2008, 7:29 AM 

I would try and save the gasket (what I called u-channeled rubber). It's visible from insde the car and covers the pinch seam of the widow frame.

For re-installation, I used black urethane adhesive. This comes in a caulking tube from autoparts or automotive glass stores.

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Also Describe the exact process on removal.....

October 24 2008, 1:15 PM 

Talked to a windshield tech on my last regular car windshield replacement and he said its very tough without breaking the glass.....

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Windsheild Removal

October 25 2008, 7:16 AM 

So far I've done a few windsheilds (no leaks so far...) and find the removal process very easy (I took out my X's completely alone and in about 20 minutes). Though this may have been easier since my car is completly gutted...

First I used a carpenter's knife (a good quality one with a non-sectioned blade) to cut the adhesive under the chrome trim. This was done by carefully running the knife pllel to the window (at some points, this involves sliding the body of the knife along the windsheild. If you're really nervous about scratches, you could tape up the knife...). As well, run the knife between the windsheild frame and the trim. You should now be able to start lifting up the trim, while cutting the adhesive stringers (the "melted cheese" looking bits). Minor bends in the trim should be easy to straighten later.

From inside the car, you need to remove the u-channeled rubber that lays between the window and the steel frame. This will be difficult since the window is glued to it. I did mine by starting at the top passenger side of the window frame and using crow's foot (a fork shaped screwdriver for removing interior panel clips) and a small dead blow hammer to push the rubber u-channel off of its track. once a few inches is off, I pretty much just started tuggin (did I mention I'm not a professional yet?) and the rest pulled right out. This was probably very easy for me since there is no interior or dash in the car and since the adhesive used was very flexible.

Once that it removed, I started cutting away adhesive from between the top of the windsheild and the frame along a 3 inch stretch. this is to cut a hole in the adhesive to push the cutting wire through. Once the wire was through, I attached a small set of vice grips on each side of the windsheild, with about 8- 12 inches of wire between them. When sawing, you need to angle the wire away from the edge of the windsheild. This is hard to describe but you'll fiqure it out. Work your way around the perimeter and your done sawing.

When I started to push my windsheild away from the top of the frame, the cut glue was sticking to itself, so I took the knife and cut the stringers (same as trim removal). Once out, I placed it on an awaiting (padded) panel stand to clean the rest of the adhesive from it.

I got the wire (about 16") from a junkyard for free. Sawing by yourself is easier than with a partner (though my 6'5" arm-span allowed this along the middle bottom), since you know your own rythym (sounds dirty...)

Hope this helps. If there's anything I left out or skimped on the details of, let me know


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Best of's...

October 25 2008, 5:32 PM 


was looking through the best of's and found out that my adhesive was butyl. Urethane still cuts fine with a wire saw, though. I took out a 95 pathfinder windsheild at the wrecker last month that was glued with urethane and it took ten minutes longer.

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Rear window replacement.

October 23 2008, 5:03 PM 

That does sound like a good idea replacing the rear window with Lexan. I know Miwest X1/9 sells Lexan windshields but, I don't think he sells rear windows. I would like to hear if you ever find a way to do that.

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Re: Rear window replacement.

October 23 2008, 5:20 PM 

Summit sells various sizes of lexan blanks for $80-$180.
Jegs would sell em too

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Angelo Savosardaro

rear window

October 24 2008, 7:28 AM 

I did this years ago. I've actually done 2 of them in different thicknesses. It's about as easy as taking the old out, and use it as a template on your sheet. I'm a little foggy, but one plastic is impact resistent, but scratches, the other is scratch resistent, but doesn't have the impact strength. I went for impact strength. The oe glass is 1/4" thick. My first window was at 3/16 and IIRC weight went from about 11 lbs to 3.5ish. Then for kicks I decided to try 1/8" and dropped another pound.

Be aware, care must be taken when cutting as not to crack the plastic. Also, with my thinner replacement you can feel it move in the weather stripping but hasn't leaked, and it's been 9 years. This winter I'm going to apply a light tint to it as the plastic is clear versus the tint of the oe glass.

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Bobr... there useta be LOTS on this subject from Rocket Science approaches to...

October 24 2008, 5:10 PM 

... Shadetree approaches.

All I know... is our local junk yard man uses Juan with a wire saw and an ice pick... and he starts a hole in the gasket and threads the saw in, then carefully cuts around the glass and lifts it out.

As far as reusing the gasket on the X... It's not needed or required.

Clean out the tray... (best to drape plastic over the entire dash and interior) and then make a bed of sealant to rest the windshield in... remembering to prop up the glass OFF the bottom with a couple of sticks to center the glass in the tray.

(trim sticks flush and just bury them there...)

Then cover the remaining gap and press the trim into place, letting the sealant hold it.

Wipe off the excess and tape the entire thing in place overnight.

OK... so this is the shadetree approach... let me also add that I used a GOOD grade of BATHTUB caulking also and it held and didn't leak for years.  Black sealant looks a bit better, but the white could hardly be seen.

I'm sure there will be some Rocket Science approaches listed here also... 

As for the backlight...  Pull the engine cover and then unbolt the ledger that holds the window UP into place. 

Using a putty knife... spread the gasket a bit between the glass and itself and spray in soap or WD40... inside and out... and work the glass by gently pulling DOWN.  Be patient... it'll come.

Have fun!

My best,

Black Tooth and me... since 1983!

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I've run a lexan rear window for years(lexan is polycrbonate,and tough but soft)

October 24 2008, 11:07 PM 

it is available with a hard coating that helps some. Plexiglas is acrylic,it's harder,more scratch resistant,but brittle and breaks into spearhead shaped shards,not good.
I went to the extreme of 5/16" lexan,hard coated,then cut 2" holes in the bottom(covered by the body )AND drilled the retainer strap to save a couple more ounces.

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Wow! They are glued in...My glass guy said....

October 26 2008, 6:33 AM 

It was a gasket. The last windshield I did was on a 67 Toyota.......It will be easy. The chrome all came off well. No bends...Thanks to all.....Bob

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