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Disclaimer: These instructions are for an early (e.g. '63-'65) Riviera.

It's quite likely that the window performance has degraded over the years, as the tracks and motors tend to get gummed up and the old lube just ain't what it used to be. 

Cleaning and re-lubing the window guides and motors will solve most of the problems (don't overlube). It does help to disassemble and clean the motors. On the front windows, it may help to replace the channel lining as well. The rear windows are a major PITA, but the results will help to ease the pain. Unfortunately, there's no easy way to do this. I would suggest doing the front and rear as a pair. All of this disassembly will change your existing alignment, and the front and rear windows need to work together to form a good seal and operate smoothly. This all sounds like a lot of work; it is. It will take you all day (and expand your vocabulary enormously), but I can now cut meat (or decapitate passengers) with my windows. 

To redo the rear windows, you must first remove the backseat (seat and back), armrests, and side panels. I would suggest completely removing the entire system: motor, regulator, glass, and guides. It's much easier to work on that way, and you'll get much better results. It also helps to remove the lock pillar filler (the U-shaped rubber seal at the front of the window). Then:

  • Clean all the old grease and dirt out of the guides (scrape and/or degreaser).
  • Remove the regulator from the motor (note the position of the spring and make sure it doesn't cut your hand off when the spring lets go:)).
  • Remove the big nylon gear from the motor and clean out all the old grease from the gear itself and the motor housing.
  • Take the motor apart (take out the two screws, lift out the plate the holds the brushes, and pull out the shaft), clean any corrosion off the commutator (copper "plates" that rub against the brushes), blow out all the junk in there, clean the old lube out of the worm gear, lube the shaft ends, and reassemble. Don't pass this up; cleaning the motor can make a *big* difference.
  • Pack the nylon gear with grease, relube the worm gear, lube the shaft on the nylon gear, and reattach the regulator to the motor.
  • Lube the regulator.
  • Make sure the nylon rollers on the window and regulator turn freely. If they're stuck, you can often free them up by soaking them in penetrating oil and turning them. You can flush out the junk in them by repeatedly re-oiling until they turn smoothly.
  • LIGHTLY lube the window guides.
  • Reassemble and realign (notice how I gloss over this part?). It's a pain in the *ss to get the window rollers back into the guide. It may be easier to remove the top 2 mounting studs on the guide so you can move it around more. It's definitely easier to have someone else hold the window in place. You can put the studs back in the guides after the window rollers are inside the guide tracks.  Adjust the window travel and alignment using the mounting studs on the guides.
  • I used common household caulking to reseal the access plates. Put a nice bead down, and it will squish into place as you tighten the screws.

The front windows may work well because they're broken. The bottom arm on the window often breaks at the pivot. If that happened to you, don't worry about it; it doesn't appear to be required for window operation.  The first step is to remove the door skin, take out the window glass, then remove and clean the guides, regulator, and motor. Aside from taking off the door skin, the fronts are much easier, as everything's right in front of you and you can see what you're doing. Special notes: the front run channel may be worn; you can get replacements from Steele Rubber. Don't forget to take out the screw at the top. If the rear channel's worn:

  • Buy a roll of Velvalure tape from Steele Rubber.
  • Scrape out all the old lining.
  • Use the tape to reline the channel. You'll need to trim the tape, as it's too wide. I found it easier to do after installation. NOTE: the channel is crimped at the edges where it held the original lining in place. Trim the tape at the edge of the crimp; you can run a knife right along the groove. Don't wrap it around the edge of the channel; there won't be enough clearance for the rear part of the window, and it will bind.

If you're redoing the windows, you might also consider replacing your weatherstripping at the same time. Note that some of the original weatherstripping is stapled to the reveal molding. Replacement parts attach using the screws that hold the reveal molding in place. If you pull your inside door panels, remember that they are glued against the door with caulking. After you take out the 4 screws at the bottom and pop the mounting clips on the front and back edges, you'll still need to pull the panel away from the door. You can get all the parts you need for all of this from Steele Rubber (prices correct when I wrote this):

Part Part number Quantity Price
roof rail weatherstrip kit 50-0426-68 1 $89.90
division post channel kit 70-1886-62 1 $33.80
Velvalure tape 70-1177-65 1 $10.90
door bumpers 33-0505-71 1 $3.70
 quarter window edge molding 50-0428-80 1 $16.60
beltline kit 80-0502-57 1 $72.30
lock pillar filler 70-1573-79 1 $30.80

 If you order from Bob's Automobilia, you save 10% on the listed prices.

Questions?  Answers?  Comments? Please send them to . Thanks.