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Old 05-06-2011, 08:54 PM
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From Hard Top to Soft Top?

I am asking your opinions and advice here. I have a 92 Wrangler YJ which has factory full steel doors and hard top. I am thinking of getting rid of the hard top in favor of a good soft top and half doors. Everybody advises me to forget the soft top and tells me I will be sorry. Yet there are reasons that favor the soft top... like more power, less fuel consumption, less weight, etc. Not to mention how nice it is to drive with the top down. Why can't I trade my top and doors for a soft top and half doors?

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Old 05-06-2011, 08:59 PM   #2
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No reason you can't, in fact I am doing the same thing. Hard top has less road noise, if that is any factor though. With my soft top and complete soft doors, it stays warm enough for me. On the trails in 20 deg weather with my door windows down, the heater keeps it warm enough to be comfortable.

Soft tops make it easier for someone to break into your jeep unfortunately.

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Old 05-06-2011, 09:12 PM
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What all does it involve? It doesn't have the factory hardware for a soft top since it has always had a hard top. I have a bikini top for it, but this is a far cry from being an all-season vehicle, in my opinion. I don't mind the road noise and I think the heater will keep it warm enough in wintertime. I sure wish I could find someone locally who would be interested in a trade.

Thank you for the encouragement, mtu. I hope your project goes well!

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Old 05-06-2011, 09:28 PM   #4
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Eh, all and all it isn't too bad, in fact when I put my soft top, that was the first time I ever put one on. Mine was brand new, but no directions - you can download those fairly easy, in fact you may want to now to see what is all involved. Normally, if you buy a completely brand new soft top, I believe it should come with all the mounted hardware you need. Or if you buy a used make sure to ask what is all included with the purchase.
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Old 05-06-2011, 11:53 PM   #5
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i have both. in the winter i use th hardtop and full hard doors. in the summer i use the soft top so you can fold it down and not have a top but if you get caught in the rain stop and put it up.
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Old 05-07-2011, 02:42 AM   #6
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You can have both, Jeeps are like big Lego sets. If you ever plan on renting a U-haul for example, they will not rent to a soft top Jeep, for whatever reason. If you get a lot of snow in the winter you don't have to worry about the top getting saggy from the weight if it sits too long. It is more secure with a Hard top.

You already know the reasons to get a soft top. They are easy to install; both hard tops and soft tops. unless it is a storage problem I would keep both. Some people say some of soft top windows get brittle below certain temps and can crack.
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Old 05-07-2011, 03:48 AM   #7
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I have soft top and half doors and hard top that I use with the half doors. It works alright Id like to have another set of full doors for the winter but dont. Im putting my soft top on tommaro. I like the way the soft top look more also. For the summer I just put my hard top in my backyard near the side of my house
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Old 05-07-2011, 06:03 AM   #8
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Life w/ a soft top

My vote is kick the hard top to the road. I live in the coldest area of the lower 48 w/ temps as low as 58 degrees below zero, not wind chill temp. This winter was warmer than most w/ only lows of 40 below and I drove everyday w/ my soft top. Never once did I miss that creeky beast of a top.

A snow fall of two feet is not unusual for us and I do keep my YJ in a garage at night. Also I do not open my plastic zipper windows when it's real cold. We have no crime up here, but who breaks into a 17 year old jeep?

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Old 05-07-2011, 08:21 AM   #9
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My vote is kick the hard top to the road. I live in the coldest area of the lower 48 w/ temps as low as 58 degrees below zero, not wind chill temp. This winter was warmer than most w/ only lows of 40 below and I drove everyday w/ my soft top. Never once did I miss that creeky beast of a top.

A snow fall of two feet is not unusual for us and I do keep my YJ in a garage at night. Also I do not open my plastic zipper windows when it's real cold. We have no crime up here, but who breaks into a 17 year old jeep?

rich
Scum bags break in to 17 year old Jeeps. Thats who.

And yes seeing how I had to run half doors with my hard top last winter I found out to never open the zippers and it just screws them all up. Not hard to fix just a pain
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Old 05-07-2011, 09:19 AM
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Thank you all for your input! I really would like one of the Bestop tops since it's thicker than the old tops were. I'd love to find someone locally who would swap me some steel half-doors for my full doors. My 83 CJ-7 has a factory top but has an umbrella top on it for the summer now. My old 77 CJ-7 Renegade had a hardtop too, so I have a real hankering for a softtop. I will be looking pretty hard for this deal.
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Old 05-08-2011, 01:13 PM   #11
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Ron, check your mail

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Old 05-08-2011, 02:09 PM   #12
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Thank you all for your input! I really would like one of the Bestop tops since it's thicker than the old tops were. I'd love to find someone locally who would swap me some steel half-doors for my full doors. My 83 CJ-7 has a factory top but has an umbrella top on it for the summer now. My old 77 CJ-7 Renegade had a hardtop too, so I have a real hankering for a softtop. I will be looking pretty hard for this deal.
I would switch doors but Im pretty far away. I couldnt stand the half doors with my hardtop last winter. But have the soft top on now so its better. I just see no need for the half doors. To me its either the doors are on or off. Not halfway. All though I do like the way the top half of the soft doors goes with the hard top. Like the black and black insted of the complete door being red. Which if I got a full set I would paint the top half black.



I like the way the soft top and half doors look way more. Im more of a soft top guy



Yea kind of a mixed opinion on the half doors but thats how I see it
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Old 05-08-2011, 02:30 PM
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Budro, check your mail. We may have a deal.

The COOL factor is very important, as well as being functional. JEEP weather (like today) beckons for the top to be down. Our CJ-7 has a factory hard top, but is sporting a Bestop bikini top for the summer. Man, gotta love a JEEP.

Thank you for all your thoughts and input, guys. I'm a JEEPer for life, make no mistake about that!

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Old 05-08-2011, 03:08 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by RLaFitte
I am asking your opinions and advice here. I have a 92 Wrangler YJ which has factory full steel doors and hard top. I am thinking of getting rid of the hard top in favor of a good soft top and half doors. Everybody advises me to forget the soft top and tells me I will be sorry. Yet there are reasons that favor the soft top... like more power, less fuel consumption, less weight, etc. Not to mention how nice it is to drive with the top down. Why can't I trade my top and doors for a soft top and half doors?
I'm doing this actually. Just finished installing the soft top. Never did one before. There will be some drilling but it isn't too bad. I have yet to drive it cause the motor is being rebuilt but I have an 87 and it wasn't too bad at all
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Old 05-08-2011, 04:19 PM   #15
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I'm doing this actually. Just finished installing the soft top. Never did one before. There will be some drilling but it isn't too bad. I have yet to drive it cause the motor is being rebuilt but I have an 87 and it wasn't too bad at all
On my 94 the holes were already there cause it orignaly came with the soft top and my hard top used the same holes with no drilling. People talk about drilling but mine appear to use the same holes.
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Old 05-08-2011, 04:39 PM   #16
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On my 94 the holes were already there cause it orignaly came with the soft top and my hard top used the same holes with no drilling. People talk about drilling but mine appear to use the same holes.
Right mine never had a soft top lol. If you get it from the factory with a soft top it comes with the holes in it. My windshield channel didn't use the hard top holes though....
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Old 05-09-2011, 05:00 AM   #17
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Right mine never had a soft top lol. If you get it from the factory with a soft top it comes with the holes in it. My windshield channel didn't use the hard top holes though....
Mine had to have come with a factory soft top. Now it has a Pavment Ends Replay top which isnt to bad
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:01 AM   #18
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Mine had to have come with a factory soft top. Now it has a Pavment Ends Replay top which isnt to bad
Yeah I put a Bestop Supertop on mine, but is pretty used. I will see how I like the soft top feel, and probably just order new skins because I mainly bought it for the hardware, which was pretty easy to install after all the drilling. I used size 10 sheet metal screws with a 1/8th drill bit and they are pretty snug on the windshield, and had to drill in the tailgate piece too. I was trying so hard to stretch the top only to find out the bows are extended completely to make it super tight I learned though yay!
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Old 05-09-2011, 11:45 AM   #19
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I would switch doors but Im pretty far away. I couldnt stand the half doors with my hardtop last winter. But have the soft top on now so its better. I just see no need for the half doors. To me its either the doors are on or off. Not halfway. All though I do like the way the top half of the soft doors goes with the hard top. Like the black and black insted of the complete door being red. Which if I got a full set I would paint the top half black.



I like the way the soft top and half doors look way more. Im more of a soft top guy
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Yea kind of a mixed opinion on the half doors but thats how I see it
I couldn't do a full soft top like yours. I like rolling down my windows lol but love that red, I think that might be the color of my next jeep!
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Old 05-09-2011, 11:57 AM   #20
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I couldn't do a full soft top like yours. I like rolling down my windows lol but love that red, I think that might be the color of my next jeep!
Get sliders then the soft windows zip so you unzip them and it's like having windows down lol
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Old 05-09-2011, 01:07 PM   #21
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Yeah I put a Bestop Supertop on mine, but is pretty used. I will see how I like the soft top feel, and probably just order new skins because I mainly bought it for the hardware, which was pretty easy to install after all the drilling. I used size 10 sheet metal screws with a 1/8th drill bit and they are pretty snug on the windshield, and had to drill in the tailgate piece too. I was trying so hard to stretch the top only to find out the bows are extended completely to make it super tight I learned though yay!
Yea theres just 2 clasps on the windshield frame which hold the soft tops channel down. Actually pretty effective requires no screws at all. I dont think thats what the Best Tops are like. But where the doors are it gets a little crazy with where things mount. A peice slides under where the rollbar meets the windshield frame and holds a small bar and theres a strange little clip for the rest of the "door frame" at then end of the tracks for the main peices. I like the way it all works. Ill get a few pictures up with in the next few days cause Im pretty sure its different then Best Tops hardware cause we dont have to deal with screws. \

And when I put my top on last week it was all in the pouring rain. I got all the hardware on then it started rain and I said screw it and finished up
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Old 05-09-2011, 06:08 PM   #22
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I just installed a Bestop Supertop on my 90 YJ this weekend. The hardware went on easy - took a few holes to be drilled but was quick. My problem was that the weather was too cold and the skin wouldnt stretch. I am hoping for a warm day this week!
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Old 05-09-2011, 10:45 PM   #23
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I just installed a Bestop Supertop on my 90 YJ this weekend. The hardware went on easy - took a few holes to be drilled but was quick. My problem was that the weather was too cold and the skin wouldnt stretch. I am hoping for a warm day this week!
Did you have the bows bent to loosen the top? The side bars that connect the front a rear bows should bend down to let the top sag....
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Old 05-10-2011, 06:27 AM   #24
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Did you have the bows bent to loosen the top? The side bars that connect the front a rear bows should bend down to let the top sag....
Soft top stuff does get pretty hard when its cold out. Thats why you got to watch your zippers. I was always fixing my driver side one last winter
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Old 05-10-2011, 06:34 AM   #25
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latest issue of jp has spineless tops
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Old 05-10-2011, 12:29 PM   #26
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latest issue of jp has spineless tops
Yea those are pretty nice. Must be allllllllllot easier but I dont think they look as good
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Old 05-10-2011, 01:20 PM   #27
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^^agreed,,they dont look as nice do they,,they have a weird curve in the back,,and i also read that the back has a 1" overlay and with a hose test water was able to find its way through,,but sides have a 2" overlay and work well..
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Old 05-10-2011, 01:57 PM   #28
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^^agreed,,they dont look as nice do they,,they have a weird curve in the back,,and i also read that the back has a 1" overlay and with a hose test water was able to find its way through,,but sides have a 2" overlay and work well..
Yea the curves cause it sits on the roll bar... I think

But I probably wouldnt buy one if it leaked. Ill still get a few years from mine anyways
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Old 05-10-2011, 02:18 PM   #29
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latest issue of jp has spineless tops
Probably fine if you have the later model Roll cage. Useless for the earlier models.
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Old 05-10-2011, 06:35 PM   #30
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Got a dual top option here and have just got soft top installed with full doors. Live in Mississippi and my only comment would be I can feel radiant heat on my bald spot with the soft top. As far as curb appeal, I prefer the hard top.

As a general comment - I understand Bestop builds OEM for MOPAR and I work in electrical power production facilities (nuclear and fossil) and have rebuilt main feedwater pumps that weren't as difficult - tolerance wise - as the soft top. Hoping its just new and tight.

Yet to experience heavy rain on it but my thoughts would be any leakage will be across front frame - we will see

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