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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I put on my soft top this weekend on my 88 YJ. It works, but it's old, ragged around the edges, the windows are all scratched. It's either original equipment (frame) or OE replacement with a Bestop top with the pointed windows.

I was looking into getting some soft 2 part doors, but they all come with the rounded windows for the hard top/Supertop which defeats the purpose of getting them with the top I have. If I went ahead and got the Supertop, I wouldn't have to find doors if I find a decent hard top.

What are some suggestions on soft tops? Any to avoid? Any must buys if you have the money?

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1993 Wrangler YJ 4.0
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I don't have a soft top so my opinion is worthless.

But free.

I will be buying a Bestop Supertop as they seem to have the best reputation and longevity.
I have full steel doors and half doors so I will buy the rounded uppers.

I can't see the advantages of buying the cheaper options.
 

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The Bestop Supertop is for full hard doors not hard half doors. If you are using the factory frame and it is still in good shape get a Bestop Replace A Top it will save you money having to buy the frame and hardware. I actually prefer the OEM top over the Supertop anyways. The supertop has a lot of Velcro on it and velcro does not hold up well over time being stuck and unstuck it tends to start wearing out. But if you are running full hard doors you dont have an option.
 

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The Bestop Supertop is for full hard doors not hard half doors. If you are using the factory frame and it is still in good shape get a Bestop Replace A Top it will save you money having to buy the frame and hardware. I actually prefer the OEM top over the Supertop anyways. The supertop has a lot of Velcro on it and velcro does not hold up well over time being stuck and unstuck it tends to start wearing out. But if you are running full hard doors you dont have an option.
why won't it work with hard half doors? They make uppers that work with the Supertop.
 

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why won't it work with hard half doors? They make uppers that work with the Supertop.

They dont seal as well as the square back upper frames with factory hardware. If i was running half doors i wouldent buy a round door Supertop. Because #1 the OEM square back frames are better. #2 the supertop with round door openings dont seal nearly as well and you will end up with water on the floor. #3 i hate the velcro that round door supertops use. Mine is starting to get ragged and i know the velcro will wear out before the top and it really pisses me off that i will have to buy new fabric because of a few dollars worth of velcro they stitched to it. But if you have full doors you have no choice.
 

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1993 Wrangler YJ 4.0
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They dont seal as well as the square back upper frames with factory hardware. If i was running half doors i wouldent buy a Supertop. Because #1 the OEM square back frames are better. #2 the supertop with round door openings dont seal nearly as well and you will end up with water on the floor. #3 i hate the velcro that round door supertops use. Mine is starting to get ragged and i know the velcro will wear out before the top and it really pisses me off that i will have to buy new fabric because of a few dollars worth of velcro they stitched to it. But if you have full doors you have no choice.
I won't get wet because it never rains here.

Having an upholstery shop remove and resew velcro is not a difficult or expensive thing. You can buy snaps and a snap tool and install snaps wherever you want also.



But to say that you can't use half doors with a Supertop is a bit misleading.
 

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A bit of history. CJ-7s came from the factory stock with no top. Hard top with full steel doors was an option. I believe that all the bodies have the tub side hinge halves so the dealers could sell aftermarket tops and doors. I don't think there was a factory soft top option, but no half doors were offered. Thus those that wanted a soft top and some sort of doors, the soft doors were developed. A bracket with the door latch post had to be added to the door opening. (I had a friend who went through this on an '84 he had purchased.

When the YJ came along, the tub was the basic shape as the CJ-7 with a few changes in the door opening (factory mounted door latch post on the sill) and the dash. For the first time full soft tops were standard with half steel doors with soft uppers. An option was the hard top with full steel doors. No full steel doors with soft top came from the factory. Bestop developed the Supertop so that those who wanted soft tops for part of the year on their YJ that came with a hard top. (That's the only way you could get full steel doors - with a factory hard top). To use the soft uppers with a Supertop, you have to get the two piece soft doors.

When the TJ was developed, one of the major changes was the use of door surrounds to imitate the upper door profile of the hard top and soft uppers with the curve at the upper back corner that had the same profile as the hard doors. For the first time full steel doors were offered with a soft top. The lower door opening has the same shape and dimensions as a CJ-7/YJ, but the sill is different and a latch loop was used vs the latch post on CJ-7/YJs. For this reason, although the YJ and TJ half doors have the same dimensions, the sills and door posts keep them from being interchangeable. The full door also have a different shape where the front upper meets the windshield which angles back more than the YJ thus eliminating the vent window that was on the YJ doors. The shorter roof line and tub belt shape keeps a TJ top from fitting a YJ.
 
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To answer the op question. Why go through all the trouble to change the oem top frame so to have rounded doors. Especially if they don鈥檛 seal and wear out faster as agaloch says. Also I don鈥檛 see any advantage of trading out the factory steel half doors for vinyl soft half doors. Same shape, way more flimsy, no good arm rest. Jmho
 

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I have a Bestop Sunrider top, which, sadly, in no longer available. Anyway, it is designed for use with rounded door uppers. I did not know this when I bought, as I had a Rampage half cab top with the square uppers for my half doors. You have to slam the door to get it to fully shut with the soft uppers on, but they have never leaked, the dash is another story.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
To answer the op question. Why go through all the trouble to change the oem top frame so to have rounded doors. Especially if they don鈥檛 seal and wear out faster as agaloch says. Also I don鈥檛 see any advantage of trading out the factory steel half doors for vinyl soft half doors. Same shape, way more flimsy, no good arm rest. Jmho
Because I go to work in the morning when it's still kinda chilly so I put my doors, windows, and bikini top on to give me some protection from the wind. In the afternoon, it's warm enough that I take the windows off and would love to take the doors off, but rather not throw them in the back to get scratched up. If I had the soft doors, I could throw them in the back. But no one makes soft doors that either take the stock square uppers, or comes with square uppers. I also didn't know they wear out faster and don't seal until Agalloch answered the question.
 
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I am in the same thought process as rushwal. I have decided to just run doorless until another decision needs to be made. In the morning it is only 54 degrees so I am comfortable in a tshirt for now. When the temp drops I will just add a layer. If it forecasts rain, I will put the doors back on.

I still may buy a bestop because I am not convinced that poor sealing is a reason to leave the top up all winter. I am in Southern California.

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I bought the Pavement ends Sunrider. It鈥檚 good, but some of the sewed seems are unraveling. I do wish I had bought a tan one

I鈥檝e had it two years. Would be better off without the sunrider, as the loose material hangs down too far when folded back.





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svtrit - your experience with the Pavement Ends mirrors the issue I had with the Smittybilt, except the previous owner is the one who had put it on two years before he traded it in. I got a couple of months out of it before it basically coming apart as well. One leak became two which turned into three and then the zipper started coming apart on the highway from air pressure.

One question I have is about the frame. Is the frame from the original factory top with the PE top just the fabric and windows, or did you get a complete PE top with frame, fabric and windows. It makes a difference in how you have to go.
 

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svtrit - your experience with the Pavement Ends mirrors the issue I had with the Smittybilt, except the previous owner is the one who had put it on two years before he traded it in. I got a couple of months out of it before it basically coming apart as well. One leak became two which turned into three and then the zipper started coming apart on the highway from air pressure.

One question I have is about the frame. Is the frame from the original factory top with the PE top just the fabric and windows, or did you get a complete PE top with frame, fabric and windows. It makes a difference in how you have to go.
I got the whole top, frame and all. My Jeep was a hard top only Jeep.

No leaks so far, but don鈥檛 drive it a lot, and generally not on rainy days. It鈥檚 in my garage a lot, which makes the unraveling seams issue even more concerning.


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Not that I recommend the procedure, but perhaps a small drop of Superglue where the threads are coming undone will prevent further undoing. Or, perhaps something that's not so brittle, like clear silicone. (or another product that I haven't thought of)
If you do so, please let the forum know what you use and how it works.

Have you contacted Pavement Ends for a comment? Shouldn't the stitching be a warrantee item? After two years probably not, but you can ask. Maybe they can suggest a solution if they don't warrantee the top.

Good Luck, L.M.
 
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