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Unread 11-15-2013, 08:07 AM   #1
MaxGaz
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High School Jeep Survey

Hello we are students in high school working on our senior year engineering project.We wanted to have a project that pertained to Jeeps (Mostly Wranglers) seeming we both drive Wranglers.We have decided to take on the challenge of creating an automatic Jeep Wrangler top. The idea of the top is that it will go up whenever it rains and the Jeep is in park. It would be great help if you guys could take this short survey for our class.

Thanks from fellow Jeepers





1. On a scale of one to ten how helpful would having automatic Jeep Wrangler Top be?(10 being the highest) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

2. Have you ever had your Jeep Wrangler get soaked because you didn’t go out in the rain and put your top up? Yes No

3. Do you see this as being a worthwhile investment and if so how much would you pay for it? $___________

4. Is there anything else that you think the top should go up or down for?

5. Would you prefer this over having to put up the top manually?

6. Tell us a little about your Jeep; what year, aftermarket parts, etc…

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Unread 11-15-2013, 08:59 AM   #2
jeff_in_rc
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxGaz View Post
Hello we are students in high school working on our senior year engineering project.We wanted to have a project that pertained to Jeeps (Mostly Wranglers) seeming we both drive Wranglers.We have decided to take on the challenge of creating an automatic Jeep Wrangler top. The idea of the top is that it will go up whenever it rains and the Jeep is in park. It would be great help if you guys could take this short survey for our class.

Thanks from fellow Jeepers





1. On a scale of one to ten how helpful would having automatic Jeep Wrangler Top be?(10 being the highest) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

2. Have you ever had your Jeep Wrangler get soaked because you didn’t go out in the rain and put your top up? Yes No

3. Do you see this as being a worthwhile investment and if so how much would you pay for it? $____$500.00 and yes_______

4. Is there anything else that you think the top should go up or down for?
snow or hail

5. Would you prefer this over having to put up the top manually?
yes

6. Tell us a little about your Jeep; what year, aftermarket parts, etc
2004 red rubicon, 4" lift on 35's and way too many to list
Answers in red.
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Unread 11-16-2013, 11:22 AM   #3
SummerOf95
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxGaz View Post
1. On a scale of one to ten how helpful would having automatic Jeep Wrangler Top be?(10 being the highest) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

2. Have you ever had your Jeep Wrangler get soaked because you didn’t go out in the rain and put your top up? Yes No

3. Do you see this as being a worthwhile investment and if so how much would you pay for it? $Yes. Cost would depend on whether it is a full replacement, or a unit that works with an existing top.

4. Is there anything else that you think the top should go up or down for? On demand, and maybe overnight (No dew!)

5. Would you prefer this over having to put up the top manually? Yes

6. Tell us a little about your Jeep; what year, aftermarket parts, etc…05, OrFab sport bars, 2"BB, 1"BL, 31's, etc.
Answers in Blue.
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Unread 11-16-2013, 11:32 AM   #4
SummerOf95
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxGaz View Post
1. On a scale of one to ten how helpful would having automatic Jeep Wrangler Top be?(10 being the highest) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

2. Have you ever had your Jeep Wrangler get soaked because you didn’t go out in the rain and put your top up? Yes No

3. Do you see this as being a worthwhile investment and if so how much would you pay for it? $Yes. Cost would depend on whether it is a full replacement, or a unit that works with an existing top.

4. Is there anything else that you think the top should go up or down for? On demand, and maybe overnight (No dew!)

5. Would you prefer this over having to put up the top manually? Yes

6. Tell us a little about your Jeep; what year, aftermarket parts, etc…05, OrFab sport bars, 2"BB, 1"BL, 31's, etc.
Answers in Blue.
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Unread 11-16-2013, 11:52 AM   #5
N128CG
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxGaz View Post
1. On a scale of one to ten how helpful would having automatic Jeep Wrangler Top be?(10 being the highest) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

2. Have you ever had your Jeep Wrangler get soaked because you didn’t go out in the rain and put your top up? Yes No

3. Do you see this as being a worthwhile investment and if so how much would you pay for it? $ Yes. Less than a hard top.

4. Is there anything else that you think the top should go up or down for?
Temperatures below something like 50 degrees.
5. Would you prefer this over having to put up the top manually?
Yes.
6. Tell us a little about your Jeep; what year, aftermarket parts, etc…
1997 Wrangler Sahara, 2.5in Rough Country Lift, cheap Chinese 31's.
Answers above. I'm also in my senior year, but we don't have any projects like this at my school, which is disappointing to me. I'm really looking forward to seeing this progress.
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Unread 11-16-2013, 04:28 PM   #6
Dingus
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1. On a scale of one to ten how helpful would having automatic Jeep Wrangler Top be?(10 being the highest) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

2. Have you ever had your Jeep Wrangler get soaked because you didn’t go out in the rain and put your top up? Yes No

3. Do you see this as being a worthwhile investment and if so how much would you pay for it? $ I am also a student in high school and for me i would spend the money elsewhere. Tires, wheels, lights, ect. I dont mind manually putting it up.

4. Is there anything else that you think the top should go up or down for? Rain/Snow, cold weather

5. Would you prefer this over having to put up the top manually?If i had it, yes

6. Tell us a little about your Jeep; what year, aftermarket parts, etc… 2004 Wrangler TJ, 2.5in lift on 31's, KC lights

Last edited by Dingus; 11-16-2013 at 04:45 PM..
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Unread 11-17-2013, 02:01 AM   #7
fastfreddie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxGaz View Post
We have decided to take on the challenge of creating an automatic Jeep Wrangler top. The idea of the top is that it will go up whenever it rains and the Jeep is in park. It would be great help if you guys could take this short survey for our class.

Thanks from fellow Jeepers
You must go to a really good school. Are you actually constructing this or is it a paperjob?
At any rate, I'm gonna bust your chops for a bit...give ya something to think about.

Have you thought this through?
Wouldn't you rather be part of a design plan that has at least a chance of viability?

If the top doesn't function with the touch of a button, or drop of rain, and maybe some manual clamps on the windshield header, no one is gonna pay more for it than a hardtop. The braces, uprights, motors, etc. are gonna add a LOT of weight and expense, not to mention the expense of providing a fabric which better be better than anything currently available or no one will feel your price is justified.

Or, is this just a raincoat for when the Jeep gets caught topless and unattended? If that's the case, I'd say the owner prolly doesn't care if it gets rained on. (It's a Jeep thing...) The crowd you're trying to sell to won't be around 'til after you get your engineering degree. In the meantime, Jeeps are still owned by people that don't melt when it rains.

How about something else, instead? Something viable?
A dropdown tailgate that is also the spare tire rack? One latch, smooth operation like on a pick-up. You figure out how to do it...I already know.

Don't get me wrong, the PowerTop® is certainly a creative idea, but it's kinda too easy for a school project. I'd give you a "B+" at best as the thought doesn't lend itself to solving a real problem. Sorta like a powered toilet seat...who needs it?



I'm just one guy whose opinion may be way off the mark here. However, I didn't get to where I am by being a follower.
So, my answers to your questions won't be in line with "the crowd".
1) 10. How could it be any less helpful if it's automatic?
2) Yes/No. Yes? Who cares? It's a Jeep. No? I went out and put it up, what's the big deal? I coulda easily stayed inside and let it rain.
3) No.
4) You seem to be under the impression that this is a good idea, or...you're attempting to lure people in to your way of thinking. Typical poll strategy to obtain answers supporting "the cause".
5) See my first answer.
6) Demographics. We are doctors, we are plumbers, we are lawyers, we are thieves. For my part, my Jeep wears cargo pants.

Now that's an education.
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Unread 11-17-2013, 07:53 AM   #8
SummerOf95
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I had assumed that this was a paper and pencil business/marketing project.
If this is a an applied engineering project, and you kids are actually going to try building this, then my interest level has increased significantly.


I believe the actual construction of this project would require a radical departure from current soft top designs.
I think the old CJs and YJs, without the family-style roll bars would be the easiest vehicles to make this work on.
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Unread 11-17-2013, 10:02 AM   #9
MaxGaz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SummerOf95 View Post
I had assumed that this was a paper and pencil business/marketing project.
If this is a an applied engineering project, and you kids are actually going to try building this, then my interest level has increased significantly.

I believe the actual construction of this project would require a radical departure from current soft top designs.
I think the old CJs and YJs, without the family-style roll bars would be the easiest vehicles to make this work on.
We are actually going to build it but on a smaller scale. We will more details tomorrow for you guys. Thanks for the relpys!
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Unread 11-17-2013, 11:25 AM   #10
jjvw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxGaz View Post
1. On a scale of one to ten how helpful would having automatic Jeep Wrangler Top be?(10 being the highest) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

2. Have you ever had your Jeep Wrangler get soaked because you didn’t go out in the rain and put your top up? Yes. Usually because i wasn't aware it was raining. No

3. Do you see this as being a worthwhile investment and if so how much would you pay for it? No. $___________I would expect a price tag of at least $2000, but that feels optimistic as this likely entails both a new top and armature.

4. Is there anything else that you think the top should go up or down for? Extended/Overnight parking. Shade


5. Would you prefer this over having to put up the top manually? No

6. Tell us a little about your Jeep; what year, aftermarket parts, etc…
2003 Rubicon
As others have mentioned, identifying your audience is very important. Reliability and simplicity often take precedent over convenience. At this point I suspect that most TJ, YJ, CJ owners and most on this forum are less interested in adding more electronic gadgets to their Jeeps. We are the ones who will complain about power windows and locks. You will likely see more interest from the JK owners, but not necessarily those who post on internet discussion forums.

That being said, making this device work and work well will help with getting the support and guidance you need.

My immediate thoughts: Become very familiar with the intimate details of how we currently raise and lower our tops. The short story is that it is a back and forth process of fussing and adjusting and folding and caressing. Understand all of this. I would want this top to go up and down without me exiting the Jeep. At the most, I just want to reach up and clip the header into place. None of this addresses what to do with the side windows.

Perhaps the automatic portion should only focus on the upper canopy, leaving the sides and rear windows as a manual installation. Look at the Fiat 500 convertible top that unrolls along a track. Placing the roll at the windshield will allow the canopy to unroll front to back. This gives the option of a variable coverage bikini top. The three windows would attach, in a similar fashion to stock, along the upper rail. All three windows would be able to be manually rolled and tied up.

Good luck with the project. Don't be afraid to fail (design-wise). Learning from and understanding why things do and don't work are equally important. A good teacher knows this. I am interested to see what you two come up with.
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Unread 11-18-2013, 08:03 AM   #11
MaxGaz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jjvw View Post
As others have mentioned, identifying your audience is very important. Reliability and simplicity often take precedent over convenience. At this point I suspect that most TJ, YJ, CJ owners and most on this forum are less interested in adding more electronic gadgets to their Jeeps. We are the ones who will complain about power windows and locks. You will likely see more interest from the JK owners, but not necessarily those who post on internet discussion forums.

That being said, making this device work and work well will help with getting the support and guidance you need.

My immediate thoughts: Become very familiar with the intimate details of how we currently raise and lower our tops. The short story is that it is a back and forth process of fussing and adjusting and folding and caressing. Understand all of this. I would want this top to go up and down without me exiting the Jeep. At the most, I just want to reach up and clip the header into place. None of this addresses what to do with the side windows.

Perhaps the automatic portion should only focus on the upper canopy, leaving the sides and rear windows as a manual installation. Look at the Fiat 500 convertible top that unrolls along a track. Placing the roll at the windshield will allow the canopy to unroll front to back. This gives the option of a variable coverage bikini top. The three windows would attach, in a similar fashion to stock, along the upper rail. All three windows would be able to be manually rolled and tied up.

Good luck with the project. Don't be afraid to fail (design-wise). Learning from and understanding why things do and don't work are equally important. A good teacher knows this. I am interested to see what you two come up with.
Thanks for all the advise. We are really liking that sort of bikini top idea were you put the windows on your self. That seems like the most reasonable way of making this work. We will defiantly keep this updated as we start to build it!
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Unread 11-18-2013, 08:47 AM   #12
tyvanwie
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Location: Boone, North Carolina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxGaz
Hello we are students in high school working on our senior year engineering project.We wanted to have a project that pertained to Jeeps (Mostly Wranglers) seeming we both drive Wranglers.We have decided to take on the challenge of creating an automatic Jeep Wrangler top. The idea of the top is that it will go up whenever it rains and the Jeep is in park. It would be great help if you guys could take this short survey for our class.

Thanks from fellow Jeepers

1. On a scale of one to ten how helpful would having automatic Jeep Wrangler Top be?(10 being the highest) 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

2. Have you ever had your Jeep Wrangler get soaked because you didn’t go out in the rain and put your top up? Yes No

3. Do you see this as being a worthwhile investment and if so how much would you pay for it? $___________

4. Is there anything else that you think the top should go up or down for?

5. Would you prefer this over having to put up the top manually?

6. Tell us a little about your Jeep; what year, aftermarket parts, etc…
1. 1
2. Yes
3. No
4. No
5. No
6. '98 wrangler Sahara, 2" BDS coils, fox shocks, jks 1.25" body lift, 1" MORE MML, Rampage frameless soft top.
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Unread 11-18-2013, 12:08 PM   #13
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Unread 11-20-2013, 07:42 AM   #14
MaxGaz
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We have to decided to build this on a smaller scale. We are going to use a barbie jeep (don't worry its not pink) to see if we can make this work out. Plus its much more reasonable then using our actual wranglers.
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Unread 11-20-2013, 12:44 PM   #15
fastfreddie
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Erector set?
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