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Unread 07-27-2013, 12:54 PM   #1
Jones23
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Jeep hard top dropped.

(sorry, I posted this in the TJ technical section first... Im not one to read the directions before starting a project... I think it fits better here... sorry)
Soooo, my hard top was dropped. This happened in the spring while removing it and was immediately put into the pretend it didnt happen part of my brain. So the back corner was compressed... no cracks running up and no damage to the side or windows, just about an inch or so of the back is dammaged.
Has any one ever dealt with this? Will it be an easy fix (do it myself) or should I bring it into a dodge dealer? or I've seen online that some people have brought it to boat repair shops (strange, but Ive seen stranger)??? and How costly do you think this will be?



Back ground on me... I'm fairly handy but have never worked with fiberglass at all and would have to buy most tools ther than screw drivers and ratchets (moved accross the country and left pretty much everything)... so all specific details would be helpful

I will definitely be more patient and wait for the appropriate friends to help next year!! So hard to wait!

oh and just in case... its a 2005 jeep and a factory top... I hear they aren't made of straight fiberglass?

Thanks in advance. I'm still a baby when it comes to jeeps... wanted one since I was a kid, finally got this one a year ago. Lots to learn!

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Unread 07-27-2013, 02:37 PM   #2
ToledoDave
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That sux. It is just fiberglass.
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Unread 07-27-2013, 05:35 PM   #3
magnetman
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I would get a price to fix it prob not from a Dodge dealer but just from a body shop. When you hear what they want to repair it you can decide if you want to spend or DIY. That's not hard to fix.
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Unread 07-27-2013, 06:37 PM   #4
ToledoDave
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Its not a hard fix at all. Problem you will run into is matching the spackle top and texture. Also it will take a little enginuity to get the strength back in that lower lip.
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Unread 08-07-2013, 12:57 AM   #5
swirve
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ToledoDave
That sux. It is just fiberglass.
Haha, its not just fiberglass. Jeep tops are SMC, which is not compatible with conventional long strand fiberglass. That can be repaired easily with the correct products/ procedures. Glass isnt one of them though, it will fail.
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Unread 08-07-2013, 01:48 AM   #6
Ironworker709
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swirve View Post
Haha, its not just fiberglass. Jeep tops are SMC, which is not compatible with conventional long strand fiberglass. That can be repaired easily with the correct products/ procedures. Glass isnt one of them though, it will fail.
That all depends on what years they are...the hardtop i bought for my 95 YJ was fiberglass,it has a busted off section on the side of the door opening..i repaired it over 4 years ago with a fiberglass repair kit and sold it a year ago to a buddy in Atlanta it still looks like new...no cracks or adhesion problems..

The correct asnwer in my opinion would of been what product to use for the repair and how to do it............
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Unread 08-07-2013, 02:00 AM   #7
swirve
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No their all SMC. The best product to repair them is Fusor T-21. "V" the crack out, tape the front side together. cut some webbing( not fiberglass) apply some T-21 to area and apply the webbing, apply a little more T-21 over the top, use a spreader to smooth out. After its dried, apply T-21 to crack( dont forget to feather out past the crack a few inches) and just beyond, spread smooth with spreader. Apply heat via heat gun or it wont dry until tomorrow. Let cool, sand with 80 grit and reapply if needed. If not apply a skim coat of polyester glazing putty, sand smooth with 150 grit then prime with a good 2k primer.

Fyi, they havent used conventional glass on a car since the early 80's. everything is sheet mold compound. May look like glass when its broke but its not.
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Unread 08-07-2013, 05:59 AM   #8
ToledoDave
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swirve View Post
No their all SMC. The best product to repair them is Fusor T-21. "V" the crack out, tape the front side together. cut some webbing( not fiberglass) apply some T-21 to area and apply the webbing, apply a little more T-21 over the top, use a spreader to smooth out. After its dried, apply T-21 to crack( dont forget to feather out past the crack a few inches) and just beyond, spread smooth with spreader. Apply heat via heat gun or it wont dry until tomorrow. Let cool, sand with 80 grit and reapply if needed. If not apply a skim coat of polyester glazing putty, sand smooth with 150 grit then prime with a good 2k primer.

Fyi, they havent used conventional glass on a car since the early 80's. everything is sheet mold compound. May look like glass when its broke but its not.
Your absolutely correct it is Smc. But dont let ppl get confused. Smc is still fiberglass and polyester blend. Smc is named due to process of producing the panels. In raw form one side of the top is a series of a stack of smc blocks. When pressed in the die with heat the blocks are squeezed and pushed to fill the molds. The polyester part is there so release agents are not needed to remove the panel from the dies. Were talking thousands of pounds of pressure to squeeze the block materials to fill the forms. I agree regular fiberglass repair wont work. The smc glass repair in factory is white looking compound similar looking and texture as bondo which you also need hardener to activate it. Its not a two part epoxy type as seen on internet repair kits. Although I can not say they wont work but I do know what does work. We use P-17 smcr white from Adtech plastics for high heat resistant sandable filler. As far as sanding it we also knock it down with 180 grit and finish blending with 400 grit. Problem I see with his repair is that it snapped the flange off from the interior rib that which the top sits down on. I think to rebuild the strength he will need to sand quite a bit of material above the crack to make room for the filler and mesh it at least 2" above and below and fill all the area and block back out. Just V cutting the crack will not put any strenth back into the affected area without mesh of some sort spanning over the damage. So enough material needs to be removed to accept the mesh and filler. May even be a good idea to do the same on the inside. If not it will most likely break again whithout some kind of support (mesh) had this just been a good size chip and not the flange then just filler would be sufficient.
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Unread 08-07-2013, 08:36 AM   #9
swirve
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ToledoDave

Your absolutely correct it is Smc. But dont let ppl get confused. Smc is still fiberglass and polyester blend. Smc is named due to process of producing the panels. In raw form one side of the top is a series of a stack of smc blocks. When pressed in the die with heat the blocks are squeezed and pushed to fill the molds. The polyester part is there so release agents are not needed to remove the panel from the dies. Were talking thousands of pounds of pressure to squeeze the block materials to fill the forms. I agree regular fiberglass repair wont work. The smc glass repair in factory is white looking compound similar looking and texture as bondo which you also need hardener to activate it. Its not a two part epoxy type as seen on internet repair kits. Although I can not say they wont work but I do know what does work. We use P-17 smcr white from Adtech plastics for high heat resistant sandable filler. As far as sanding it we also knock it down with 180 grit and finish blending with 400 grit. Problem I see with his repair is that it snapped the flange off from the interior rib that which the top sits down on. I think to rebuild the strength he will need to sand quite a bit of material above the crack to make room for the filler and mesh it at least 2" above and below and fill all the area and block back out. Just V cutting the crack will not put any strenth back into the affected area without mesh of some sort spanning over the damage. So enough material needs to be removed to accept the mesh and filler. May even be a good idea to do the same on the inside. If not it will most likely break again whithout some kind of support (mesh) had this just been a good size chip and not the flange then just filler would be sufficient.
I will have to give that product a try
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Unread 08-08-2013, 09:14 PM   #10
Jones23
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Thanks a lot! Lots of different info, but I think I'm piecing all of the right parts together. I do see the spot you are talking about and will definitely look closer to see what has actually happened in that spot because I dont remember seeing what the picture is showing (I know its not lying, but I missed it before)... sanding it up a ways seems like a smart choice vs just trying to glue an end on. I guess I'm going to have to do a little research on the products listed.
Thanks again for the info.
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