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Old 04-16-2011, 01:33 AM   #1
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Making Bikini Top for JK

After looking at the few bikini tops available for JKs I did not like the ones that they had in my price range (less than $75). Well, I liked the Spiderweb ones, but I decided I would just make my own. I wanted to use a mesh-like material, but it was expensive and HD had a large quantity so the price was offset by the waste. So I spent $25 on a different material and started making it.
I bought 12 bungee cord with ball ends and a 50 set of 1/2 in grommets from Harbor Freight ($16) and roughly 3 sq yrds of vinyl top material (identical to the factory soft top) from Hancock Fabric ($6) and about 10 ft of 1 in nylon webbing and 2 slide buckles ($3).
I measured every interior angle and length I could possibly need and started designing. I am going for the traditional looking ones avail for the tjs. I will have it made tomorrow with pictures. It seems to be easy, but we shall see.

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Old 04-16-2011, 01:36 AM   #2
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Old 04-17-2011, 09:23 AM   #3
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Phase 1

Ok, so first I measured the jeep interior of the roll bars, I'll spare you all the measurements, and also they may not all be identical.

This required much supervision:



I formulated a plan based on what I had measured.



I laid out the material on the floor and again, this required supervision.



I then cut the material to size. I rolled the material back approx 1/4" and had it sewed in place so all the corners look solid and professional.

I then folded the front, sides over to the inside by 1" and sewed them in place, twice, to ensure the grommets to not rip out.





I went out and test-fitted it and it fits perfectly.

End of Phase 1
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Old 04-17-2011, 09:39 AM   #4
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Phase 2

Next I had my mom help me hold it in place so I could mark the locations for the first grommets. Unfortunately, my pictures did not look good so there aren't any pics of this part.
I put the grommets for the sides at the little knobs that hold on the black plastic door frames. I then bungee'd the grommets around the roll bar and looped it around the knob to pull the top taut.
I then measured the front grommet spacing. It is important to note that the center footman loop on the windshield frame is NOT centered.
I then put the grommets in for the front.
I then put the grommets in for the very far rear corners and attached the nylon straps. I made a loop with about 6" of nylon across the rear and then anchored the actual strap for tension to the loop.
This part is the rear:



Now that all the grommets are in, it is time to go to phase 3.
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Old 04-17-2011, 10:05 AM   #5
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Phase 3

For this phase, I attached the top to the jeep.

I first loosely attached the front with elastic bands.
Then I put the sides up and looped the elastic around the roll bar and around the knobs.



I then pulled the nylon webbing around the roll bar and back to the little anchors on the floor in the rear. I did not tighten them yet, just enough to hold them in place.
I now attached the front with cable-ties (for now, I am still trying to think of a better way) and made them very tight. I left the corners out for now as well.




Not in the pictures for the above: I put an elastic strap on each side and this can be placed around the visor arm. This is elastic to that the factory soft top can be placed over my top.

I then tightened down the back corners and put the rear elastic in place.



That is pretty much it.
Here are some pictures:













I can post measurements of all the dimensions and grommet placements if anyone needs them. I like the top, and cool part is I don't have to take it off to put my soft top back up.

Next project: Fleece-lined roll/portfolio for my plastic windows. I have had the jeep for a short amount of time, less than 2 weeks and my windows are all scratched already from dust on them when I roll them up, so I will have to rectify that situation.
I will try to post some pics of that too.

Hope I inspire someone out there!

-Roger
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Old 04-17-2011, 10:10 AM   #6
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Nice job Roger!
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Old 04-19-2011, 06:50 AM   #7
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Not too shabby!
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Old 04-19-2011, 08:35 AM   #8
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Awesome job!
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Old 04-19-2011, 11:43 AM   #9
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Very Nice!

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Old 04-19-2011, 11:50 AM   #10
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very cool !! I just did the same thing with a mesh tarp from harberfrate
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Old 04-19-2011, 12:03 PM   #11
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Good job Roger, wife & I will be in Aggieland this weekend visiting the in-laws and may use the time to build one for our JKU. Thanks for the pictures & writeup!
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Old 04-19-2011, 03:34 PM   #12
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thanks all
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Old 04-19-2011, 10:31 PM   #13
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how does the front hold up to wind while driving?
does it flap around?
could u show more pictures of the windshield connection?
thanks.
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Old 04-20-2011, 07:26 AM   #14
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Pretty sweet! I may have to look into this for the TJ.
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Old 04-20-2011, 12:45 PM   #15
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The front really doesn't flap around. It doesn't flap in the front at all, I believe because the corners are held in with elastic. The only part that flaps is the middle over the roll bar, but it does not slap or anything. I am thinking of adding 2 more elastic tie-downs over the bar to combat what slapping is there. I will go take some pics and try to put them up, I am at work and people always call 911 when I'm trying to do something.
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Old 04-20-2011, 07:14 PM   #16
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Alright so yep got several calls, but anyway here it is:











Hope this clears it up a little, I think it looks kind of red-neck, but ehhh it works.
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Old 05-25-2012, 02:01 PM   #17
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I know it's been a while since you posted this but I had some questions I hoped you could answer. How has the top held up? And I went by Hancock and they had a couple different pieces of material that looked close, you don't happen to remember what exactly you got do you? I just wasn't sure what would hold up the best in the weather. Anyway thanks for the help!
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Old 05-25-2012, 08:15 PM   #18
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check the local army surplus store by you also, they have some material/fabric that would work great at the ones by me. some will install the grommets you need or sell you a tool to put them in your self
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Old 05-25-2012, 10:06 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rbranham607
I know it's been a while since you posted this but I had some questions I hoped you could answer. How has the top held up? And I went by Hancock and they had a couple different pieces of material that looked close, you don't happen to remember what exactly you got do you? I just wasn't sure what would hold up the best in the weather. Anyway thanks for the help!
It has held up really well. I might leave some extra material and triple up on the sides where you put the grommets in. I dont remember what the number was. I got it from the scraps rack. If you go you can ask for cloth backed vinyl I guess. Hope that helps
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Old 05-26-2012, 08:22 AM   #20
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my local army/navy surplus also has the mesh material to its not a full sunblocker and lets air flow through
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Old 05-27-2012, 09:04 AM   #21
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I picked up some mesh from Lowes a year ago for under $20 with enough material to make at least 2 tops for a 4-door. Folded the edges over only once, when I do another one, I'll try folding over 3 times, maybe use a metal yardstick and see if a hot/warm iron will make it hold it's place.

What I love about the first one is that #1 - it works great - it does flap a little and has some extra grommet holes, but hey, it cost less than $20 for everything. #2 - it's easy to install and takes up no space. With the extra grommet holes, I don't think I've installed it the same way twice yet.

May be at Lowes for other reasons today, might see if I can find the stuff I used to make this one and let the folks know what worked for me.
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Old 05-28-2012, 10:48 PM   #22
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That is awesome. Great job on it
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Old 05-29-2012, 09:33 AM   #23
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Thanks guys! I hope to get the stuff to build mine soon!
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Old 05-29-2012, 09:58 AM   #24
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@ El Gringo, Great Job, when will you be ready to start taking orders...LOL

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