Author Topic: 1973 De Ville Convertible  (Read 734 times)

Offline 73 DropTop

  • Posts: 23
  • Name: B. Reid
1973 De Ville Convertible
« on: February 13, 2018, 09:56:56 PM »
Good Evening Guys & Gals. I'm in this forum for advise, tips, etc.
Now my favorite is 1973 Coupe De Ville or Calais Coupe, the best overall looking 4th Gen Caddy in my opinion. Unfortunately my favorite  type of car is a convertible. Ok you know where I'm headed. So..... Do I buy a 1969 or 1970 Convertible and replace all the body panels from a 1973 OR take convertible parts from the 69 or 70 and install on the 1973? Hit me.

Offline e.mason

  • Posts: 185
  • Name: Eric Mason
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2018, 10:07:07 PM »
Compromise and consider a '73 Eldo.
Eric Mason

Offline 73 DropTop

  • Posts: 23
  • Name: B. Reid
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2018, 10:29:27 PM »
My younger brother had one, the look to it didn't impress me like my Uncle's coupe did.

Offline Eldorado James

  • 1971-76 Eldorado/Cadillac Specialist
  • Posts: 63
  • Name: P James
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2018, 10:32:52 PM »
The 1973 Eldorado and DeVille have basically a similar firewall/cowl, but the angle of the windshield is greater on the Eldorado convertible as I recall....but that might mate quite well actually.  Then you could use the "slimmer" scissors-top convertible mechanism from the Eldorado as well, and avoid hydraulics.  You could also use the Eldorado quarter windows since they are the correct angle for the Scissor-top frame.  Pic attached of your starting point in this project.  I helped a guy with a 1984 Fleetwood Coupe a few years ago, he made into a "1992 Fleetwood Brougham Convertible" ragtop using basically what I mentioned above (Changed out the nose from a 1984 to a 1990-92..better looking).  Results were pretty good...pic attached of a similar attempt (Which prob used a 1967-70 GM frame, based on the looks and how it is sticking up).  Private message me if you want to discuss more~!

EJ
~Eldorado James~

Currently:
1972 Eldorado Convertible
1975 Eldorado Convertible

Past Cadillacs:  Too many to remember.

Offline Eldorado James

  • 1971-76 Eldorado/Cadillac Specialist
  • Posts: 63
  • Name: P James
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2018, 10:38:50 PM »
Enjoy (It's a 1972, but close~!)
~Eldorado James~

Currently:
1972 Eldorado Convertible
1975 Eldorado Convertible

Past Cadillacs:  Too many to remember.

Offline 73 DropTop

  • Posts: 23
  • Name: B. Reid
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2018, 10:52:25 PM »
Oh yeah, I got that pic



Offline Barry M Wheeler #2189

  • Administrator
  • Posts: 2218
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      CLC Member #2189
  • Name: Barry Wheeler
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2018, 07:53:38 AM »
When I first opened the thread, my first reaction was "Whattttttttt?" Upon seeing the results, I am thinking, "Well, those turned out pretty well. Go ahead and have fun." In any case, Welcome.
Barry M. Wheeler #2189

1979 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham
1981 Cadillac Seville
1991 Cadillac Seville
2016 Cadillac ATS

Offline Scot Minesinger

  • Posts: 4262
    • CLC Member
      CLC Member #20543
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2018, 08:01:41 AM »
1973 CDV convertible - agree the 1973 RWD is a striking Cadillac no question. 

Either task, converting a 1969/70 DVC to a 1973, or converting a 1973 CDV to a convertible will be major, properly done by others could easily top 100k.

Guess if I had to pick one or the other, probably would convert a 1969/70 DVC to a 1973 RWD Convertible.  The body is a little longer on the 1973, so it could work.  Start with the doors and work back and forward from there.  How far do you want to go - interior too?  For that matter the 1974 dash is way nicer than a 1973 in my opinion.  If I was pursuing this would go with a 1970 DVC, keep seats, change dash and door panels to 1974, and go with 1973 body.  Goes without saying the 1970 drive train remains.

Enjoy!
Fairfax Station, VA  22039 (Washington DC Sub)
1970 Cadillac DeVille Convertible
1970 Cadillac Sedan DeVille
1970 four door Convertible w/Cadillac Warranty

Offline D.Smith

  • Posts: 487
  • 1961 Sedan deVille
    • CLC Member
      CLC Member #17592
  • Name: Dave Smith
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2018, 08:12:41 AM »
Better to buy a nice 73 and have a top done using donor parts from a convertible.

Unless you are doing it yourself it will be costly.

Here is a 4 door conversion in the club. (Below)

I had some fun with photoshop seeing how it would look as a coupe or a 4 door with suicide rear doors.

Offline Eldorado James

  • 1971-76 Eldorado/Cadillac Specialist
  • Posts: 63
  • Name: P James
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #9 on: February 14, 2018, 08:36:03 AM »
@D. Smith

Great job with the photoshopping!

Looks like the owner converted it using a pre-1971 top mechanism...there is just no depth in the upper trunk/rear inner fenders to get those mechanisms to "be flat" with the car's natural body lines, so they stick up awkwardly.  That was why I suggested the Scissor top, it resides flatter at the area over the wheel well and puts most of the mechanism dead center behind the rear seat -- thus allowing a more flush look.

Can't help but wonder if that car (sedan convertible) rides poorly.  No rigidity in the frame (twists?) with the top lopped off. The coupes at least have a lot of reinforcement metal in the lower quarter window area, but the rear doors of a sedan convertible offer none of that.  What was the last 4 door ragtop...the "Kennedy" Lincoln?

Eldorado James  8)
~Eldorado James~

Currently:
1972 Eldorado Convertible
1975 Eldorado Convertible

Past Cadillacs:  Too many to remember.

Offline 73 DropTop

  • Posts: 23
  • Name: B. Reid
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #10 on: February 14, 2018, 11:23:34 AM »
Great job D. Smith, That looks awesome, that's just throwing more fuel in my fire!!!

Offline 73 DropTop

  • Posts: 23
  • Name: B. Reid
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #11 on: February 14, 2018, 11:34:05 AM »
@ Scot, 100K? for putting 73 body panels on a 70? If I go with Eldorado James's idea of using as much ElDo parts on the 73 CDV with scissor top, Id think that's the way. I was quoted on a 77-79 CDV conversion at $5500 in Las Vegas (Theyre on YouTube). They don't do 71-73, YET. This is a full custom shop, I talked to owner on the phone (TJ). He only does the metal work and reinforcement for $5,500. That's right Five Thousand Five Hundred. These guys do a great job, most of their conversions go one to be hopping Lowriders and can take the abuse of hoppin & poundin! Maybe if I hire Jesse James or West Coast Customs it'll cost 100k.

Offline Eldorado James

  • 1971-76 Eldorado/Cadillac Specialist
  • Posts: 63
  • Name: P James
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #12 on: February 14, 2018, 12:04:32 PM »
Interesting price of $5,500.....Are they using a generic convertible frame with that, and somehow capping the stock windshield with a matching header?  I'm speculating that might be the case...not using the Scissor Top and having that bunched-up mess behind the rear seat.....but I'm anxious to see the pics of what they do.  Did he give you any examples? I wonder how they addressed the quarter windows. 

You could always throw that 1970 472 into the 1973, for some extra punch.  :o :o
~Eldorado James~

Currently:
1972 Eldorado Convertible
1975 Eldorado Convertible

Past Cadillacs:  Too many to remember.

Offline Eldorado James

  • 1971-76 Eldorado/Cadillac Specialist
  • Posts: 63
  • Name: P James
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #13 on: February 14, 2018, 12:34:08 PM »
Eldorado Conv inner quarter area....well braced for side impact.....the CDV would be too.
~Eldorado James~

Currently:
1972 Eldorado Convertible
1975 Eldorado Convertible

Past Cadillacs:  Too many to remember.

Offline 73 DropTop

  • Posts: 23
  • Name: B. Reid
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #14 on: February 14, 2018, 05:43:33 PM »

Offline 73 DropTop

  • Posts: 23
  • Name: B. Reid
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #15 on: February 14, 2018, 05:52:18 PM »
When I talked to him I didn’t ask about whick rack he used but probably same one the Le Cabriolet (Hess & Eisenhart) used. The video show a few samples of 1/4 windows. Eventually he’ll get into the 4th Gen Coupes. I couldn’t believe its $5,500 but he told. I was surprised how “relatively” cheap it is. And as you can see, He’s busy.

Offline 73 DropTop

  • Posts: 23
  • Name: B. Reid
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #16 on: February 14, 2018, 06:14:32 PM »
@ Barry, Thank you!!

Offline Eldorado James

  • 1971-76 Eldorado/Cadillac Specialist
  • Posts: 63
  • Name: P James
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #17 on: February 14, 2018, 06:59:49 PM »
Some screen grabs from that video.  I see how the address the quarter window....add new metal in there and probably enclose the gear mechanism.  Those are not Eldorado pieces of glass but they are sorta similar. 

EJ
~Eldorado James~

Currently:
1972 Eldorado Convertible
1975 Eldorado Convertible

Past Cadillacs:  Too many to remember.

Offline Eldorado James

  • 1971-76 Eldorado/Cadillac Specialist
  • Posts: 63
  • Name: P James
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #18 on: February 14, 2018, 07:04:16 PM »
There is a faster and more economical way to achieve the end result..... >:D

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uvWWb9hFKxI
~Eldorado James~

Currently:
1972 Eldorado Convertible
1975 Eldorado Convertible

Past Cadillacs:  Too many to remember.

Offline 73 DropTop

  • Posts: 23
  • Name: B. Reid
Re: 1973 De Ville Convertible
« Reply #19 on: February 14, 2018, 07:12:47 PM »
They always used existing windshield frame and modded the top of it. I been doin my research. I think Im going with the El Dorado parts, only because they're readily available however replacing the windshield frame is no joke, gotta be just right on that one!
Now on deciding on "the" car, a cheap beater or a pristine car. plenty of donors on the web, between 4 and 8k, the pristines are climbing up there in price. and not only that, finding the El Dorado beater to take parts from, now its getting up there in price, I found a scissor top on eBay for $499.

 

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