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Unread 05-13-2014, 11:51 AM   #1
Bringbackmikey
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2008 JK Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Gastonia, NC
Posts: 18
Full Soft Top vs Bikini + Duster Cover

Hey guys -

I'm weighing the pros & cons of this. Really want to swap out my hard top on my JKU to something easier to get some airflow. I was initially looking at frameless soft tops (Bestop Trektop NX) but seems to me the bikini + duster cover combo might be just as good of an option.

Only negative I see with the bikini top is there isn't much security as someone can just crawl on in the back. But with any soft top, there's always the security issue as someone can just take a knife to it.

So what am I missing? The bikini will be much cheaper and give me really what I want. Just trying to justify not having a vehicle with a rear enclosure on it.

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Unread 05-13-2014, 12:07 PM   #2
XTRyan
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2012 JK Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Malvern, PA
Posts: 1,512
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bringbackmikey View Post
Hey guys -

I'm weighing the pros & cons of this. Really want to swap out my hard top on my JKU to something easier to get some airflow. I was initially looking at frameless soft tops (Bestop Trektop NX) but seems to me the bikini + duster cover combo might be just as good of an option.

Only negative I see with the bikini top is there isn't much security as someone can just crawl on in the back. But with any soft top, there's always the security issue as someone can just take a knife to it.

So what am I missing? The bikini will be much cheaper and give me really what I want. Just trying to justify not having a vehicle with a rear enclosure on it.
Like you said, any soft top is inherently easy to get into. The best thing you can do is not keep anything of value in the Jeep unless it's locked up in something like a Tuffy Security Box. There is always the chance that your top will be cut and I don't personally think your Jeep or your stuff is any more safe with a full soft top than with a Bikini Top set up. Let me know if you have any questions or if you'd like a quote!

-Ryan
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Unread 05-13-2014, 12:20 PM   #3
gily25
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2005 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: CT
Posts: 3,260
Honestly the answer is get both...When I bought my first Jeep I had just the hardtop and I asked myself the same question. I didn't live in a great neighborhood and I was worried about harsh storms (I lived near the ocean). I bought a flip top, thinking I could either flip on questionable days and take the windows out on nicer days. I found that I put the top down more than I thought, so then I invested in the bikini/tonneau option. When I would be home for 3-4 days at a stretch I would use the bikini tonneau, other days I would just have the top up. When I bought my next Jeep I didn't bother with a hardtop at all, I just got the soft top and ordered a bikini/tonneau. I live in a better place now (altho I still don't leave any valuables in the Jeep at all) so I can leave the top down from April-October, but it's nice to have the soft top for longer highway trips and overnights in places where I'm uncertain.

Basically either of your options will work, you have to decide how much coverage you need (i.e. do you have a garage for rain storms). I know with my brother's JKU the tonneau didn't cover all the way to the top of the rear doors, I don't know if they updated the design at all, but I would guess some rain will find it's way in.
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Unread 05-13-2014, 12:54 PM   #4
AngryRedBird
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Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 591
Security Issues?. you bet. No matter what top you decide on getting even the hard top.. if you leave it in the jeep and in plan sight there will always be that someone with the need to steal it.. I've written several articles about safety and security based on our current soft top combination.. The Bikini, Wrap Around Jammer & Duster.
This all started when we were camping in North Carolina and simply went for a walk.. returning.. the duster had been disturbed as to where whom even couldn't replace the cover fast enough and just left it laying there. Although nothing was missing.. the fact that the duster was disturbed was enough for me to get motivated on creating an idea I had several moths before.
A discarded Bedliner would fit the bill and cover the rear area just under the duster cover and mounted to the body side rails. Crudely done, I've slowly added a few more options to make this home made security cover safer.
About the only things I can suggest when it comes to having something in your jeep.. is don't have it in your jeep. But if you must.. Camouflage can be your friend.. I've found that by disguising the items to look broken or hidden within other items.. IE your iPod etc inside an old 8 Track player etc. or simply weathering (repainting) the items.. to look old or worn out.. can and has been a deterrent for would be thieves.
In other words.. Think outside the box when locking things inside the box..
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