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Unread 08-26-2013, 10:18 AM   #1
pauljerome
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Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: Hopewell Junction, New York
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Soft top replacement

Good afternoon everyone,

I am new to this forum. I just bought a 2006 Wrangler TJ over the weekend and am excited about my new purchase. However, yesterday when trying to put the soft top back on I almost broke every bone in my hand trying to get everything lined up. Realizing that it should not be that difficult, I am going to purchase a new soft top. I am looking at either Bestop or Sierra Outdoor. My question is do I need to buy any hardware in addition to the tops, such as the latches, etc. or does the necessary equipment come with the top? I have been looking at the product descriptions, but they are not very informative with this. I greatly appreciate any advice and help.

Cheers,
Paul

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Unread 08-26-2013, 11:47 AM   #2
rage4order
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
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Welcome to the Jeep family! To answer your question, it depends. Yes, you can buy all the hardware but that's gonna pretty much cost you an extra couple hundred bucks. Or you can just buy the replacement top, which is pretty much just the top, door skins and windows- no hardware at all is included. Why was your top so difficult to install? Are there broken parts?
BTW, I'm basing this on my experience buying a replacement top for my YJ.
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Unread 08-26-2013, 12:36 PM   #3
pauljerome
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Location: Hopewell Junction, New York
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Thanks for your response. I should have clarified, my fingers almost broke merely putting the existing top back on, not putting on a replacement top. I am pretty certain it is the original top and needs to be replaced. I got blisters from merely trying to unzip the windows, which is not normal. When you replaced the soft top on your TJ, was it easy? It seems like it is easy. Although I have read that moving the latches that lock the top in the front from one top to another is not easy.

Again, thank you for your help.

Best,
Paul
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Unread 08-26-2013, 09:11 PM   #4
jjvw
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Are you doing it correctly? There is a technique that isn't immediately obvious. Where exactly are you having trouble? Is it the rear corners after you clip the front header bar?
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Unread 08-27-2013, 05:49 AM   #5
pauljerome
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Thanks for getting back to me. I am having problems stretching and tucking the canopy everywhere, on the sides, in the back, plus the quarter windows and back windows are having fits as well. I am almost positive it is just time for a new top. The stitching looks stretched and the top is stubborn overall. I purchased the Bestop from AutoAnything and it will be delivered today. I will keep you posted how the new top fairs in putting it on.
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Unread 08-27-2013, 06:07 AM   #6
Hristo
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2004 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Maple Ridge BC
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If there are no tears in the top, it should be fine. You can run some soap along the zipper to make it move better. It should be stiff though.
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Unread 08-27-2013, 06:27 AM   #7
Tdog02
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Let us know how the new top works out. My 02 still has the original top on (no leaks and still works great) but can be stubborn at times. Did you get sailcloth replacement?
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Unread 08-27-2013, 06:38 AM   #8
jjvw
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The big tip is to only hook the front catches (don't fully latch them yet) into the windshield before attaching all the splines on the main canopy. Also, put the side windows in before you do the splines above the doors. Once everything is assembled, then you latch the header bar.

If you aren't doing it that way, then you will have trouble. YouTube has plenty of how-to videos of putting on a TJ soft top.

It is fairly easy, but you are dealing with a rough heavy canvas and thick stitching. Remember, this is a tent that needs to survive repeated highway speed hurricanes. It needs to be tough and it won't be easy on soft hands. Any good replacement top will not change that. Also, be aware that many will say that the original top is the best you can get.
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