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What soft top do you run with?


stewart

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What Soft top?

 

Ok little debate on the types of soft top available for your Jeep of all vintages from CJ, and Wrangler YJ. TJ LJ and JK

 

Do you have a soft top? Do you plan to buy this summer?

 

If you already have a soft top what type do you have and what are the pro's and con's ? Would you buy it again?

 

Any other feedback on the subject?

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Stewart,

 

I have the factory soft top, came with the vehicle as part of the package

 

If I were to buy another JK, I'd definitely look to buy the standard shape soft top.  When fitted it gives a jeep the right silhouette; the hardtop makes the vehicle too squat.

 

The pros - the exposure you have when the roof is down.  On most convertibles you are hunkered down inside the vehicle.  With a jeep, you're literally exposed to the elements....

 

The cons - this will be a long list..

  The half roof option is a right pain.  You have to fold it just right to stop it from flapping at excess speed (not ideal for hammering down the motorway.  The velcro straps you have to hold it down. Could they not have come up with a better fixing solution which was more sturdy?

 

Folding the entire roof down: It's certainly not a spur of the moment activity.  Why, when you buy the soft top (from jeep for example) do they not include in the price the boot cover for it?  When folded normally, it looks messy.  The boot, which is no the easiest thing to fit, cleans up the lines of the rear end. You can get them, but as an accessory.  Why not package it up as a bundle? 

  The rear and side panels. If you've dropped the roof when you're out, where do you store these? They don't roll very well due to the plastic in them.  Yet 3rd parties sell roll sleeves for them.  I have one and it only just works. Their storage and not damaging them is my one bug bear with them.

 

The UK weather does not really allow for the roof to kept off all summer.  If it did and I also and the garage space, I would remove the hard top and run without any roof, or perhaps look at a Bikini safari top, plus wind jammer (here's a thought: perhaps Jeep could make a safari top which could sit under the hardtop, doubling up as roof liner in the winter and pseudo soft top for the summer). 

 

Whilst the cons out weigh the pros in my list, any jeep without a roof still makes people stare....  It still has to be one of the coolest sites on the road here in the UK, even in the US when you see one fully stripped, it still turns heads.  Historically all body on chassis SUVs with soft top options have all been designed around a manual frame solution - if it ain't broke, don't fix.

 

If I wanted to buy a SUV with automatic soft top, I'd have bought a Range Rover Evoque.....

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Agreed Fen,

The softop really does "make" the JK when the UK weather permits. But can be a real pain if not folded correctly for storage on the Jeep rear.

Got factory softop with my JK. Absolutely love it......and hate it.

Half fold is not ideal. But normally it is an all or nothing for me with the roof.

Side windows are a bit more of a faff like you say Fen.

The rear window I normally unzip with the bar and store within the folded down roof assembly on the tailgate.

Probably loads more options. I place a piece of cloth on the plastic to avoid scratches, then roll them up reasonably loosely.

 

Alternatively when the rear load area is empty I just lay everything in there flat on the floor and cover with a blanket.

Also considering a false floor to store them all in unfolded condition.

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I can see that I am in for a whole load of pain if I decide to use the factory soft top this summer.

 

 

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I can see that I am in for a whole load of pain if I decide to use the factory soft top this summer.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

In fact I have a day to myself tomorrow so I might investigate exactly how difficult it is to remove the hard top. I might make a frame like others do just so that I can remove it easily and not even bother with the soft top.

 

 

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The hardest part is lifting the hard top off, especially in the 4 door. So best I luck with this.

If you do make a frame to lift it off, let me know so I can make one as well. As at the moment I us a harken hoist and have it hanging from the garage roof.

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The hardest part is lifting the hard top off, especially in the 4 door. So best I luck with this.

If you do make a frame to lift it off, let me know so I can make one as well. As at the moment I us a harken hoist and have it hanging from the garage roof.

I will let you know how I get on, knowing my luck I will drop and break it, upside would be I would then have justifiable reason for my Trektop, yes I got caught trying to buy one the other night and was shown the errors of my ways.

 

 

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So I will add my opinion to this.

 

I have always preferred the look of the JK with the soft top and bought one as soon as I could when I got my Red JK.

 

As I put the dogs in the back, it was important to maintain the headroom. This meant a tradition style soft top.

 

Initially I bought a Bestop Super top NX in diamond black. This is Bestop's version of the Jeep soft top.

 

For those that don't know, Bestop make them for Jeep anyway, so it was a safe bet for fit etc. There are a few changes, but not noticeable.

 

Super top NX takes minutes to put down, just longer to roll windows and store. I also have a Jeep soft top boot to keep the top tidy when folded down. Which is a real pain to use with the Bestop soft top, you need to make sure the top is folded into itself to ensure it fits. I have always put this down to my top not being a Jeep top  :scratch:

 

My second soft top is the Jeep Premium fabric super top, same style of top, same fittings really, just a different fabric.

 

Premium fabric is a triple ply fabric, which is warmer and black on the inside. It is so much better as a fabric than the diamond black.

 

Diamond black is a single ply fabric and is gray/pale on the inside.

 

With the deals the club has achieved the Jeep soft top is far cheaper than when I bought the Bestop one, so worth looking at if anyone is thinking of buying.

 

Few pics for comparison

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I will let you know how I get on, knowing my luck I will drop and break it, upside would be I would then have justifiable reason for my Trektop, yes I got caught trying to buy one the other night and was shown the errors of my ways.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

Rolfe save the money and use the one you have it's not that bad at all onece you get a system in place it get really quick! Worth investing in the window storage bags ! You can also make a stand for the hardtop out of 4x2 timber and some wheels to move it ideally 3 person lift but 2 can manage it

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So I will add my opinion to this.

 

I have always preferred the look of the JK with the soft top and bought one as soon as I could when I got my Red JK.

 

As I put the dogs in the back, it was important to maintain the headroom. This meant a tradition style soft top.

 

Initially I bought a Bestop Super top NX in diamond black. This is Bestop's version of the Jeep soft top.

 

For those that don't know, Bestop make them for Jeep anyway, so it was a safe bet for fit etc. There are a few changes, but not noticeable.

 

Super top NX takes minutes to put down, just longer to roll windows and store. I also have a Jeep soft top boot to keep the top tidy when folded down. Which is a real pain to use with the Bestop soft top, you need to make sure the top is folded into itself to ensure it fits. I have always put this down to my top not being a Jeep top  :scratch:

 

My second soft top is the Jeep Premium fabric super top, same style of top, same fittings really, just a different fabric.

 

Premium fabric is a triple ply fabric, which is warmer and black on the inside. It is so much better as a fabric than the diamond black.

 

Diamond black is a single ply fabric and is gray/pale on the inside.

 

With the deals the club has achieved the Jeep soft top is far cheaper than when I bought the Bestop one, so worth looking at if anyone is thinking of buying.

 

Few pics for comparison

 

Looks so much better when the folded soft top is stowed in the fitted cover when down.

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Looks so much better when the folded soft top is stowed in the fitted cover when down.

 

 

Just a faff at times to coax it into the bag!

Looks even better when the whole lot is stowed in the garage for a jolly out in the Jeep.  :glasses: :great:  :icon_flower:

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Rolfe save the money and use the one you have it's not that bad at all onece you get a system in place it get really quick! Worth investing in the window storage bags ! You can also make a stand for the hardtop out of 4x2 timber and some wheels to move it ideally 3 person lift but 2 can manage it

 

Totally agree, once I trained the boys it takes no time at all to fold back and down.

 

Looks so much better when the folded soft top is stowed in the fitted cover when down.

 

Yes  the boot makes it look so much neater when folded back.

 

Here is a photo of the two soft top rear styles next to one another, sloped back and standard back.

IMG_1423.thumb.JPG.21355b6573d97ff2ed63dff50531d032.JPG

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Rolfe save the money and use the one you have it's not that bad at all onece you get a system in place it get really quick! Worth investing in the window storage bags ! You can also make a stand for the hardtop out of 4x2 timber and some wheels to move it ideally 3 person lift but 2 can manage it

I am certainly going to try it. I just remember that I never liken the look of my YJ with the soft top up and I am not sure yet about the JK but time will tell. That said I am looking forward to seeing Dozer with the black top.

 

 

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I am certainly going to try it. I just remember that I never liken the look of my YJ with the soft top up and I am not sure yet about the JK but time will tell. That said I am looking forward to seeing Dozer with the black top.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

 

Got it down to about 5 mins now ! down or fully up with the soft top found a pic from July 2012

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That just does it for me. If anybody wants to sell a Trektop then I would definitely be interested.

 

 

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Think you will be towing your trailer more than you would like Rolf with a trektop option.

No matter what you decide.......it is "your" Jeep in the end......but you did ask!

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I spent a bit of time looking at the whole hard/ soft top issue and came to the conclusion that if I fitted the soft top then I would almost never drop it so it really isn't worth the hassle for me fitting it. However if anybody has a Trektop that they want to sell or swap for a factory softop, then please contact me.

 

 

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My contribution, for what it's worth -

 

On the JKU I run a Bestop Trektop NX in the summer.

Pros: 1) The PRICE. even at full list it's still half the price of the factory soft top. I just couldn't bring myself to spend the extra £1600 to add it as a factory option.

2) It's good quality and completely weatherproof, even in summer downpours

3) It looks cool (er than the hard top) IMO

4) easy to fit ( takes about an hour to install, first installation took about 2 )

5) very easy to flip open the sunrider and flip it back when needed, takes seconds

6) windows zip out to convert to a sort of Safari bikini

Cons:

1) It's not secure

2) Once it's on it's not quick to put down, takes about half an hour to go fully open and then the frame doesn't fold down neatly, you'd have to put the seats down to be able to store it. so, in a way, it's a bit like having a soft hard top: you  have to decide at the start of the day if you're going fully topless or not an either take it off and leave it or put it on and content yourself with the sunrider. Factory soft top is much better for this.

 

On the YJ I currently run a Bestop Safari Bikini with a Bestop windjammer when the hard top comes off. When I first got the YJ it came with a Bestop softop ( in rather poor condition )  but no frame, I bought a frame for it and would probably have run the soft top permanently on it but the canvas fell to pieces after two summers and I've not got around to buying a new one ( it's on the list! )

 

Bikini and Windjammer Pros:

1) It's just a great option for the summer, allows you to go full topless but because there's no frame you can just roll it all up and take it along in the back in case of the inevitable British summer rainstorm

2) quick to fit

3) cheap ( relatively )

4 ) looks cool

 

Cons:

1) it isn't secure, in any way, ( but that's not the point )

2) it isn't really weatherproof either. keeps the wet off you in a light shower and keeps you a bit warmer if the summer evening is a bit chilly.

 

On the CJ7 I run a Bestop replace - a - top with soft doors summer and Winter and have a Bestop Classic bikini for the few really sunny days it goes full top ( and door) less.

 

Pros:

1) c'mon, it's how a Jeep should look ..... really

2) Completely weather proof and quite warm surprisingly. Quality is excellent.

3) does fold completely down and can be stowed ( sort of, doors are a slight problem! ) if you decide to go top down when out and about 

 

Cons:

1) although I said the quality is good the one thing I was a little disappointed with ( although in most respects it is superior to the original) is that it doesn't quite fit right. I've had to adjust it slightly and it still doesn't pull quite taught. However that may possibly be to do with my positioning of the hoops when I replaced the tub rather than the top itself, maybe it will shrink with age.

 

The Classic bikini, just a square of cloth doesn't serve much purpose but looks cool, especially with no doors and does keep the sun off the bald patch! I like it.

 

So, all Bestop then...... can't go to far wrong with Bestop for Jeep tops, I wouldn't choose anything else. ( have just thought that some pics would probably be useful for comparison, dammit I have none handy. may try and post some later.) If I had to choose between soft top and hard top it would definitely be soft top, Jeeps ( sorry to all you Cherokee owners I mean Wranglers and CJ's here, but then you probably wouldn't be reading this thread anyway ) were made to be soft top and should always be run that way as often as possible.   

 

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