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Old 02-11-2013, 11:50 AM   #1
Mikulas's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Vancouver B.C.
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Freedom topless

I know its hard to belive, but soon it will be time to start thinking of taking the top off. Living in Vancouver, the rain is never too far away though, so I'll start with just the panels, and carry them with me. How much drag, aerodynamic handicap or cabin turbulance does remowing the front panels produce? Would it be a good idea to remove the rear window as well? And just in case, how water resistant is the stock JK interior? Or should I just ger a bikini top? Never owned a convertible, so any help much appreciated.

Hold my beer, I want to try something.........
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Old 02-11-2013, 12:01 PM   #2

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Location: Wisconsin
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I run a soft top, exclusively, so I can't answer the ht questions.

As for the water resistance of the interior...water can damage your electronics, obviously. But I got caught in rain without a top and doors last summer; pulled carpets and seat covers to let em dry out (so they won't get mildew), and was good to go.

Beneath your carpet you've got drain plugs. If you get really hosed, pull carpet, open the drains and let gravity do its thing.


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Old 02-11-2013, 12:01 PM   #3
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Removing just the front panels didn't create too much additional noise for me. Had it on the highway at 60mph, it was a little breezy and more noise than all closed up, but nothing crazy. Not like it's a whirlwind of anything not tied down inside, and you can still have a conversation.
As far as water resistance...I wouldn't trust the interior too far. The electronics in the dash and steering column are obviously sensitive. I'd look at getting a bikini top personally. I currently have the stock hard top, and I'm just waiting for warmer weather to install the Trektop NX for some more flexibility.

edit - Ninja'd!
'12 JK | Black Forest Green
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Old 02-11-2013, 12:12 PM   #4
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Location: Portland, OR
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panels off is not too turbulent. you don't need to open the rear window, but it is a bit smoother if you the roll the side windows down a bit.
2012 Deep Cherry Red JKU Sport S - Tickastar, 6 speed, 3.73, Dual Tops
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Old 02-11-2013, 01:16 PM   #5
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Posts: 527
You also might consider something like the Pavement Ends Emergency Top. Not something you would want to drive under for a long way or at high speed but a quick way to keep your interior dry or at least dry-ish.
'09 Wrangler Unlimited X
Red with mud accents.
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Old 02-11-2013, 01:28 PM   #6
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Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 14
Acquired JKU in October when it started getting cold. I loved it while in Florida on vacation over Christmas/NewYears since I didn't really have anywhere to put the whole hard top.

35mph and under is great
35mph to highway speed is great + randomly would get annoying seatbelt slapping in the wind. Solved by messing with window heights. In the future probably could secure with some velcro strap.
2013 JKU Sahara True Blue w/everything
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Old 02-11-2013, 04:16 PM   #7
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Location: Deep East Texas
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On my two JKU's the "buffering" is less with the rear door windows open. It is even less than that with the rear glass open. I will not drive with the rear glass open except at slow speeds and smooth roads.
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Old 02-11-2013, 04:56 PM   #8
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Location: Vancouver B.C.
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Originally Posted by cyclone88 View Post
Not like it's a whirlwind of anything not tied down inside,
The Wizard of Oz scenario...thats kind of what I was worried about!
I think a bikini top should keep the dash electronics out of the worst of it, and by the sounds of it everything else should dry out OK (forgot about the drain plugs).
Thanks for the advice, can't wait for summer.
Hold my beer, I want to try something.........
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:28 PM   #9
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: IE SoCal
Posts: 13
I've removed the freedom top and driven on the freeway 70-75 mph quite a few times with no problem. Depending on how tall you are your hair may blow around, but thats about it.

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