Even stock parts can deteriorate with time. Sitting on a shelf for sometimes decades can take their toll. Here we have a pair of New Old Stock popout windows for a 1967 VW beetle. They are in terrific shape with the exception of the outer seal. The seal has become hard and most likely will not mate up with the body properly. Usually these seals will crack or split apart in a short time. So, replacement with a fresh and more pliable seal is necessary.
Removal of the old seal is generally easy. Just pull a section out and the rest will follow. If the seal is hard, trimming the seal with a hobby knife may be necessary. Cut the seal deep to split it apart into two pieces along the length of the seal. Pull the first piece out and the second will generally fall out of the groove.
Once removed, it’s time to install the new seal. New seals have a bonded seam that is to be placed at the split of the window frame. This is located at the front of the frame where the hinge attaches to the car.
Using glass cleaner as a lubricant, spray it onto the window frame. Glass cleaner is a great as it evaporates, and does not leave a soapy residue that will streak of leak onto the car once installed. As the seal is a “T” shape, place the inner flap into the groove, and use a nylon bone tool to work the outer portion of the seal into the groove. The bone tool is excellent for this purpose and will not scratch adjacent surfaces. With the glass cleaner as a lubricant, this goes very quickly. Generally a seal can be installed in 5-10 minutes total.