went around to hardware stores and got some materials...
got an initial frame put together... the concept was to just have a few straps at key points for now, trying to keep it as simple as I can. primed and cemented it all up, making sure to keep everything level and straight (it doesn't come back apart once you get it cemented up). and took it out for a test fit.
3 straps on it at this point, and it's pretty darn secure
there's a little bit of play in it, but attaching the plexi to the top will eliminate what little there is. the mating surface is completely flat with the single curved edge, and I'm pretty sure I can form that using the existing panel as a form with a small butane torch and some patience. straps are rated at 800 pounds and are attached to the frame itself with screws, so it's probably more secure than the factory panel.
rear strap. this one is actually screwed to the plastic portion of the sound bar, because it would be a PITA to wrap it all the way around every time.
front attaches to the footmans loop that the factory panels clamps in on. I rotated the strap up a bit before screwing it on to maximise the downward tension on this one. It might have to get redone somehow though, because I'm not sure if it's going to have enough downward pull, especially with this:
thsi front outer elbow is sitting directly on the steel bracket that the rollbar attaches to at the windshield, and it looks a little tall
gonna do some surgery on it with an angle grinder tomorrow and see if it's still viable. If not, I'm either going to have to cut the corner off and put in two more 45 degree corners, or scrap the whole frame and start over with 1". total cost for this PVC frame is at $10, $4.90 for the 10' PVC stick, .80 cents for each elbow, and the straps will just move to the new frame if it comes to that, so meh
Smoked plexi ain't happenin... only way to get it in a large enough size is custom order off the 'net and ship... $150 per panel... Aint' spendin that much without a proof of concept at least
anyone ever tried nightshades paint on clear plexi?
thinkin either that or the "magnetic cling" style window tint (which will also help keep scratches down... bonus)
It's raining (it almost never rains in el paso, except on the day that I would rather have my freedom panel off the jeep to use as a plexi form...), so I have the freedom panels put back on, so no forming today...