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Old 05-30-2012, 04:58 PM   #1
Skol-Vikes's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Clay Co, MN
Posts: 66
hard top vs new sailcloth

Hey all, I've been really wanting to buy a new soft-top. My jeep came with a soft top but it's a POS and missing some parts. So either I can try to fix what I have or get one of the new Best-top with Sail cloth. The problem is that the only way I can afford it would be to sell my hard top to be able to buy it.

Just not sure how well any soft-top will hold up to our Northern Minnesota winters? My Jeep is not a DD I only drive it when I want to and it gets put in the garage most of the time anyways. So should I just go ahead and sell the hard top and go all in on a soft-top only?


1998 TJ-4L-5sp, 3inch Black Diamond W/ 33's GY Duratrac on MT Classic III's., Warn 8K# Winch.
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Old 05-30-2012, 05:19 PM   #2
InvertChaos's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: NoVa
Posts: 8,174
I'd say go for the soft top if you think you'll have it down sometimes. Its been fine for VA winters as far as warmth and such but I have had to make sure that snow doesn't pile up on it too much. I dunno, I've never heard any complaints.

|2004 Jeep TJ "Green Machine"|4.0L 5 speed Dana44|33x12.50x15 Goodyear Duratracs|2.5" OME HD coils + 1.25" body lift|OME NitroSport shocks|4.56 gears|Skid Row Engine Skid|BCC Sliders|Currie AntiRock|
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Old 05-30-2012, 06:26 PM   #3
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 878
Have the sailcloth top

Whiles it's far better than the factory soft top I wish I woulda gotten the frameless rampage top

I still have to battle with zippers all the time
My top spends 3/4 of the year coming off though

No snow just ice,no real complaints
I'd keep the hardtop also and find a way to buy a soft top
Pincho De Lapiz
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Old 05-30-2012, 06:35 PM   #4

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Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 7,920
Another voice..slightly different take. Have an '04 TJ that I got in '04. With Factory softop I saw -10° F more than once. I saw snow and ice that didn't fully come off for a couple of days driving 20+ miles to work.

That softop (the last I knew) was on a fellow Forum members Jeep in Southern IN. I got rid of it last May...and it still sealed and worked fine no tears etc.

I run a halftop in the winter now and have been in Wisconsin and NW IN up by lake MI and have seen as much as 36" of snow on it. I have never been cold in my Jeep once it gets to operating temp...I also have half doors.

IMO I would probably sell the hardtop and get a soft since you DON'T drive it every day. and it sits in the garage a lot. Good Luck!!

Can't tell you which top to get----- IMO if you get a "good" "name brand" will probably be all right.
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:21 PM   #5
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 25
I just installed the sailcloth Bestop and it's ok. I really don't see or hear the fuss, but I also installed the headliner as an option and it seems to help maintain better insulation. Now it really doesn't get all that cold here in south Louisiana, but the heat is a test all together. I will add the I am not impressed with the "Bestop" products. The quality is average, fit is marginal, and overall not worth the high cost. However, I have not compared other manufactures so this may be the norm. All that said, I do prefer the soft top for it's simplicity.
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Old 05-31-2012, 12:24 AM   #6
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Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Clay Co, MN
Posts: 66
Thanks guys Im really thinking I want the soft top for the convenience in the summer. I know I can sell the hardtop for the price of a best top sail cloth. Anyone have any security problems with the soft top only?
1998 TJ-4L-5sp, 3inch Black Diamond W/ 33's GY Duratrac on MT Classic III's., Warn 8K# Winch.
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Old 05-31-2012, 10:00 AM   #7
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 16
Dont just limit yourself to the Bestop, check out the Rampage stuff too, I'm pretty sure they do sailcloth as well. As far as softop security? Isn't that an oxymoron?
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Old 05-31-2012, 11:55 AM   #8
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 42
Save some money and find a used OEM top and keep your hardtop for winters

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