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Old 04-19-2012, 03:54 PM   #1
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soft top vs hard top?

I'm new to the jeep scene but have shop extensivly for jeeps. Speaking with mechanics , friends and dealers about jeeps and how the diffrences in the tops fair in the maine seasons the one group I didn't ask was the jeeping community. So what does better in say winter weather and maines mud season hard top or soft top or is it a matter of prefrance and there's no big diffrence
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Old 04-22-2012, 07:37 PM   #2
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Here is my $0.02 worth

I think its really a matter of personal preference as well as geographical location.

Me personally? I think, in Georgia, a hard top is an abomination. (Poor man's Hummer?) We rarely get snow or really bad winters. When we do they don't last that long. Hell, this past "winter" we hardly hit freezing on any semblance of a consistent basis and it was short sleeve weather the majority of the time. I don't think I once had to get out my winter jacket. The vast majority of the time here it's going to be top down weather so putting a hard top on a vehicle that looks so bad ass with the top off should be a crime.

Now Georgia != Maine, so in areas of the country that actually have Winter and spend weeks and/or months covered in snow I can see the need for a hard top. In the frozen months it'll fare better than a soft top especially if you don't have a garage to park in. I can't imagine a soft top would hold up long term if it is constantly piled up with snow regularly. I've never been to Maine but I have been to New Jersey in February so I've seen some serious snow piles that would pretty much cripple Georgia for weeks and have people screaming about the End of Days. Hell, all it takes here to close every school is a light dusting of the dreaded frozen stuff. When that happens good frakin luck finding milk, bread, or eggs. Apparently everyone down here stays home and makes French Toast when it snows.

If I lived in an area of the country that actually had a Winter like you do, I'd probably get a dual top option and either install a hard top lift in my garage for storage or get a rolling rack and set aside a corner for when the temps are not in the single digits.

I also freely admit I have no current experience with off road adventures w/ lots of mud so I will have to defer to others to extol the virtues (or not) of a hard top in those situations.

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Old 04-23-2012, 12:47 PM   #3
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I threw the question out there 1 because I do have a hard top. As well as a safari top and tono top to put on in the summer. This winter however was mild to maine terms and we've had some spring days in the 80s. Me jumpin the gun put my cloth tops on and stored my hard top now the rains have come and I'm in to a soggy ride now :-( but I've made the best of it
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Old 05-21-2012, 11:48 AM   #4
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I too would say it's a matter of personal preference. I bought my jeep with just a hard top on it and couldn't wait to get the top off. Decided to remove it before I ordered a soft top and go for a ride on a beautiful, sunny Maine day and got poured on 5 minutes after I left home. Ordered a soft top so I didn't have to keep taking the hard top on and off whenever I wanted to go for a topless ride. I personally enjoy having both as my soft top is quite drafty and can get cold around winter time. If you've got a good place to store the hard top during the spring, summer, and fall having both is the way to go!
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