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Old 05-15-2013, 10:22 AM   #1
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Curse the soft top

Have tried everything. Jeep is parked in hot sun at moment and top is warm to the touch. Have been stuck 1/4 - 1/2 inch from latching since last night. Have spent total of two hours tugging and pulling. Have read the threads and not finding anything that helps... Do I just take to dealer?

The latch seems to have difficulty reaching the red hook due to the very firm weather seal bumping against the soft top notches (two hard pieces of plastic that protrude out from the sides of latch).

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Old 05-15-2013, 10:32 AM   #2
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The picture is blurry but is your latch open so it'll reach?

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Old 05-15-2013, 10:33 AM   #3
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Can you unhook the back corners to get some slack to get the latches started?
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:36 AM   #4
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The picture is blurry but is your latch open so it'll reach?
By latch being open you are referring to the black piece that I will push up to catch/lock top into place? If so, it is undone. Flopping around till I try latch it.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:37 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by wwch99tj View Post
Can you unhook the back corners to get some slack to get the latches started?
Back corners of soft top are totally undone :/



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Old 05-15-2013, 10:37 AM   #6
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There's a latch inside the latch. Separate it by pulling it apart then use the inner most latch to grab the "red" hook piece. Then use the outermost latch to seal the deal.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:38 AM   #7
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There's a latch inside the latch. Separate it by pulling it apart then use the inner most latch to grab the "red" piece. Then use the outermost latch to seal the deal.
That is helping! Only 1/8-1/4 inch to go. I will beat on it for a few.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:39 AM   #8
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What they're saying is have you separated the hook from the cam lever, if thats the right way to say it. Im assuming you got the other one on and you cant get this one to reach?

Spread the two as far as possible and hook the hook then lock it down. BAM soft top on!!!
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:40 AM   #9
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What they're saying is have you separated the hook from the cam lever, if thats the right way to say it. Im assuming you got the other one on and you cant get this one to reach?
Neither actually. Patient just showed up so I get a 60 minute break! Hopefully the heat will continue to help.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:41 AM   #10
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Neither actually. Patient just showed up so I get a 60 minute break! Hopefully the heat will continue to help.
Got it! U guys are awesome.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:43 AM   #11
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This the first time installing your soft top? If so make sure you tuck the side window flaps are tucked into the door sill.
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Old 05-15-2013, 10:52 AM   #12
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This the first time installing your soft top? If so make sure you tuck the side window flaps are tucked into the door sill.
First time installing. side window flaps: are those from the zip-in windows?
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Old 05-15-2013, 12:31 PM   #13
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And make sure the freedom top at the hinge spot is latched into the side right above the door. I had a hard time making mine reach until I noticed that one side did not get locked in.
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Old 05-15-2013, 12:58 PM   #14
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And make sure the freedom top at the hinge spot is latched into the side right above the door. I had a hard time making mine reach until I noticed that one side did not get locked in.
This was the problem for me when I was putting the top back on for the first time. With the Sunrider part of the top angled upward, pull those clips into place and then fold the sunrider down. Never again will you have a problem getting to the hooks.
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Old 05-15-2013, 01:04 PM   #15
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Three important hints when having trouble.

1. Make sure the handle part of the latch is all the way back. (Which you did).
2. Unhook the rear corners if need be. (Which you did).
3. I found this out the hard way...after fighting with the top for hours. Get into the passenger (so the steering wheel isn't in the way) seat. Slide it all the way forward. Tilt the seat back up all the way up (90 degrees). While you may feel squished, you can now get maximum forward leverage in order to get the top latched.

Before I did #3, I struggled for hours one night. I'm 215 pounds, and I was actually hanging from the soft-top bar, but I could not get it to move forward another 1/8th inch to latch because I was pulling it downward, and it is hard to get forward leverage if your seat is leaned back.
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Old 05-15-2013, 01:28 PM   #16
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Just put my premium top on for the first time last night I did struggle with the front latches but to me the rear corners are the toughest part to stretch and put in. When you get those, the rest of the installation was not too bad. And a previous poster said before, make sure you tuck in the rear door/ window correctly, it is different than the rest of the installation on the body/tub.

Good luck. Awesome top once you get it installed.
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Old 05-15-2013, 01:32 PM   #17
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My first attempt to latch was a bear. Oddly the final trick was pushing the top sideways a bit and moving from latching the driver's side to the passenger side first (but not all the way, just getting the hook engaged), and then moving to the drivers side.

Wait

Then clamp all the way about 30 min later
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Old 05-15-2013, 01:46 PM   #18
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My 2013 JKUs is about 5 months old. It took quite a few times for it to loosen up. It is still very tight to latch it up but it does get easier...especially when it is warm. When I purchased the Jeep I wanted to get out of there..but my sales guy insisted that he show me how to operate the soft top. I am glad he did as he told me about the rear zip in windows flaps. Lots of people have come it to claim warranty on the zip in windows to get turned down because they did not install them right. It was worth the extra 30 minutes for him to show me how to do it right. So far no problems and I take the top off as much as I can now.
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Old 05-15-2013, 02:32 PM   #19
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if you unhook the back flaps of the soft top and hook the front first its infinitely easier ive found
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Old 05-15-2013, 03:53 PM   #20
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I had a helluva time with mine when it was new last year. 17 yrs with a TJ, and I thought I knew stuff :P

I did the rear flaps last - was next to impossible. I struggled hard. Did read to get the corners on first, then latch... which I did this year when I switched tops - no prob. Might have had the latches partially hooked... don't recall.

Took me a few weeks to figure out the side windows weren't in right.

As I found out last year w/ the freedom top... I never bothered taking the whole top down! So once the back was on... it stayed on.

Maybe this summer won't be a bazillion degrees everyday!
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Old 05-15-2013, 04:01 PM   #21
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I've had my soft top on for about a week and a half. It has stretched out some and it took me about a week to get the knack of it. Plus it has been through enough crazy Chicago weather that it is already seasoned. High yesterday out here in the burbs was in 90's, the day before, the low was 31.
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Old 05-15-2013, 05:30 PM   #22
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High yesterday out here in the burbs was in 90's, the day before, the low was 31.
Gotta love it.


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