View Full Version : Interior: 57 Hawk headliner installation question

02-09-2017, 10:41 PM
I am replacing the headliner in my 57 Golden Hawk. Everything is going well so far. I am now at the front corners and the headliner retainer peters out on the side and there is no retainer around the corner where the sun visor mounting holes are before the headliner is glued to the windshield frame. Does the headliner get glued directly to the metal area around and below the sun visor mounting holes or is there supposed to be a retainer there? It looks like the windshield interior molding will cover the headliner up in either case.

02-10-2017, 08:30 AM
Glued the wifes 57 headliner there and it turned out well. Luck Doofus

02-10-2017, 05:58 PM
Thank you Doofus. It worked fine to glue it directly to the metal.

Captain Billy
02-10-2017, 06:00 PM
Have a peek Joe

02-11-2017, 08:32 AM
I've been following Ray-Lin's advice on this and other installation tips. It is a great resource.

02-11-2017, 12:25 PM
Years ago, I attended one of Ray's "tech sessions". The guy is a wizard, very resourceful and detail oriented..

03-18-2018, 10:41 AM
I am now ready to tackle the job of replacing the headliner on the 63GT. Have replaced several 56Js' cardboard headliners over the decades, but only one cloth headliner, in the 62GT, about five years ago. I will have to go back and review everything I found on the internet for that job on the GT, as it is a different animal than 56J.

Have re-read RayLin's article in this post, and plan to remove the interior, and front & rear windshields today. It will be a primary reference. (Too bad Ray Lin left our community, but oh well.)

Has anyone else here recently replaced a cloth headliner in a Stude, who can offer tidbits of advice? If so, I am all ears.

Thanks Much,
Joe H

03-18-2018, 11:15 AM
The last GT I did I had some issues with the rear behind the 1/4 window. I had to resew the pre-sewn kit as I couldn't get the wrinkles out where it turned the corner. Also the front header on other cars have a wire that holds the bows from turning as you stretch the headliner rearwards. I had to shorten that to get the liner tight enough. I also padded the header with 1/8" landau top padding (closed cell dense white foam) to keep bleed through of the bare metal from possible future rust of the headliner material. The added bonus being it also helped in apperance. I usually remove the stays along the sides, and reshape the teeth so they protrude evenly and enough that when you tuck in the sides it will grab. The bow channels sewn into the headliner will have to be shortened so the ends of the bows are free for about 4" from the ends. Of course while the headliner is out is the proper time to replace the windlace. Make sure it has the secondary small bead to get captured by the edge of the sheet metal. Otherwise it will pull out between the hold down clips. A heat gun will help soften the vinyl slightly so you can stretch it. Don't over do it. Make sure the tuck in tool is dull, or put tape over the edge so you don't rip the fabric when you tuck it in. Start the installation in the center of the roof, and work progressively outwards (in tucking the edges). Have the ends clamped with dick bill vise grips but removeable so as you stretch out the headliner as you install it, you can reposistion the slack and then glue the window openings as the last step.
If you still have some wrinkles on a GT Hawk, don't be too worried, as the stainless bow trim will usually stretch the material enough when installed to take them out.

03-18-2018, 10:24 PM
I appreciate the input, and have carefully read your post several times. The rear corners' problem sounds familiar. I agree with removing the stays, cleaning them off as much as possible, and realigning the teeth. Also, this time I labeled every bow and wire, for less confusion later. I recall advice to lay the headliner out in the sun, if possible, a few days before installation. Will see if the weather cooperates. I have the glass installer coming next Monday, so will have to work on it a few hours each day, in order to be ready for him. I do not anticipate a problem though.

I like to clean and paint the underside of the roof, at least everywhere a brush will reach. On the last one, I used POR15 primer and top coat, then RinoLiner, all slathered on with a brush. On this one, I will use Rustoleum Rusty Metal Primer and top coat. I put the rusty metal primer on this evening. Not sure if I will add the RinoLiner this time. I was thinking it would help reduce noise, on the other car, but not sure it is worth fooling with.

I do not glue any sort of padding to the roof top, as RayLin did. But I like your idea of padding the front & rear headers, and have something already on hand to use. Actually, both headers had already had fiberglass padding, about 1/8" thick. The cardboard side panels (behind the rear windows) also had the same fiberglass. I plan to use 3M carpet glue to hold the new material in place. I plan to replace the cardboard side panels with ABS, and glue on new, 1/8" padding material, same as used on the headers.

As you mention, the stretching operation is the most tedious, and difficult to get right. Last time, to hold the liner in place on the front & rear windshield lips, till the glue dried, I used about 100 alligator clips, from Office Supply. On the GT, the only wire bow that is anchored in place is the rearmost one. I also recall, a hair drier will help smooth any wrinkles left over.

A pleasant result of new headliner is, it goes a long way toward eliminating any, "old car smell". As will the new carpet and panels I plan to install while at it. Looking forward to finishing the job, in time for South Bend in only six more weeks.

Thanks again for your advice.

03-18-2018, 11:15 PM
Also when you have the headliner out, check the wiring to the dome light. For some reason Studebaker never upgraded the wiring to modern insulation, and it was always cloth covered lacquered insulation.

03-25-2018, 01:46 PM
After 11 hours in the garage yesterday, I am on schedule with the headliner, but had already chickened out and rescheduled with the windshield installer, from tomorrow to 4/9. So I can slow down a bit. I got the headliner hung and clamped on each end yesterday. Just need to tuck the sides, and glue the ends now. The hard part is over, but it still will take several more hours before ready to re-install the windshields. The entire job is a royal PITA, or maybe I should say pain in the neck, due crooking my neck to look up, all those hours.

Still, this being my second headliner installation, it is going better than the first one. I am also re-doing the interior while at it, replacing carpet, dash pad, door panels and rear 1/4 panels. Am taking Matt B's advice and using ABS for those panels. Also used ABS for the rear pillar pads, beneath the headliner. I used U-Haul moving blanket material, glued on, fully covering each side. That was to insure the ABS did not develop a vibration later, and it all cleared perfectly.

I decided against anything other than Rustoleum primer and paint, on the steel roof. The factory had installed sheets of what looked like roofing tar paper there, and that may make it a little quieter in the rain, but that's about it. Having the extra clearance for the wire bows is a good thing, I believe. Even without the tar paper, the rear three bottom out against the roof, making it difficult to rotate them forward, as the headliner is pulled forward.