Jeep Enthusiast Forums banner
1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
337 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Got all my hardtop issues so moving on to soft top. I got the CJ with the bikini top hold down strip already in place on a rusted out ws frame so needless to say I had to replace frame and of course it doesnt have those holes already there and if that option was available I did not see the fine print. So I need to place the strip onto the new frame. probably should have done this prior to painting but didnt think that far ahead. In the pics below this is how it was attached to the old frame (see pic #1) So should it be placed there where the channel is flush with the outer side of the frame? Or should it be placed next to the inside lip as in pic #2? Now for the next ?, In my opinion they used the pre-punched center hole of the frame, you can see the relationship of this existing factory hole used for attaching the hardtop as a reference and then drilled a hole for the soft top strip in the frame. See pic #3. When they did this it allowed the right side of the strip to conform to the curve of the frame but on the left side the 2 curves do not match and it floats. 2 ways to make this fit better #1) cut off a 1/4" of one strip then both preformed curves of the strip will fit the curves of the frame or 1/8" off both. In reality the 2 half pieces dont have to meet in the middle just as they are both on the same straight line with each other or #2) find a better center point and both curved ends float a little prior to tightening up. Probably #2 or maybe it dont even matter but to me both ends need to conform to the frame for a better secured fitment of the soft top. In the mock up pic #4 it appears that the thick folded portion of the soft top that contains the snap is also to be inserted in that strip which tells me that this top has not even been installed cause I cannot get that part of the top in the groove without a little persuasion. As usual any help or suggestions with this soft top issue will be appreciated. Thanks Mike

Wood Finger Recipe Nail Thumb
Wood Bicycle part Automotive exterior Bumper Composite material
Wheel Automotive tire Tire Rim Wood
Rectangle Concrete Font Flooring Wood
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
9,458 Posts
Your pictures are not very clear but here goes.

You paint first and put it on later.

The strip needs to be centred left to right on the windshield frame. Just centre it, do not obsess over how close to either end is it as long as it is not overlapping the snap. Bagusjeep strip does not quite go to the end on either side but it is centred.

I would centre it front to back on to the ledge. When the bikini is on. it will look a lot better that way.

Bagusjeep did not have a bikini before, being Army. So i used a nail to make a hole and then self tapping screws.

The front seam of the bikini has a rope inside it. You flip the bikini on to the hood on its back and feed this rope into the front of the channel. Then flip it back over the windshield and tie it down.
 
  • Like
Reactions: JoonHoss

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,977 Posts
I've been meaning to post this tid-bit of info for a while.

This looks to be a good place!

My full tops and bikinis last quite along time.

I noticed on my very 1st CJ-5 (back in 1981) that the darn windshield frame was

cutting bottom side of my top right where it folded over the tip-top and headed rearward.

Ever since then, on it, and all of my other CJ-5s I have split a piece of fuel line, and covered

the sharp edge of my windshield frame.

It stays there 24/7 and keeps my bikini and full top from getting cut.

You can see it in my pics below.

-------JEEPFELLER

Wheel Tire Vehicle Hood Motor vehicle


Motor vehicle Vehicle Automotive carrying rack Car Hood
 

·
Registered
1978 Jeep Cj5 OEM AMC 304
Joined
·
389 Posts
I've been meaning to post this tid-bit of info for a while.

This looks to be a good place!

My full tops and bikinis last quite along time.

I noticed on my very 1st CJ-5 (back in 1981) that the darn windshield frame was

cutting bottom side of my top right where it folded over the tip-top and headed rearward.

Ever since then, on it, and all of my other CJ-5s I have split a piece of fuel line, and covered

the sharp edge of my windshield frame.

It stays there 24/7 and keeps my bikini and full top from getting cut.

You can see it in my pics below.

-------JEEPFELLER

View attachment 4154877

View attachment 4154878
Genius
 

·
Registered
1978 Jeep Cj5 OEM AMC 304
Joined
·
389 Posts
I was able to score stainless self tapping screws for my old windshield frame, the pointy kind without the bit built in- I’m a rust hater so I’m sure I painted the hole.
Helmet Automotive design Automotive exterior Bumper Hood

(looks at picture then looks around for hose)
 

·
Premium Member
1984 Jeep CJ-7 Renegade
Joined
·
10,195 Posts
There are basically two types of WS channels for the bikini top and soft tops.
The OEM, bright finish aluminum one was one piece and made by Whitco out of Colorado back in the day. Late model CJ-s from 76-86 used these and the dealership installed these along with the soft top if your Jeep came with one. Jeep also offered a sun bonnet (bikini top) made by Whitco that used the same aluminum channel. Aftermarket soft tops being made back then from either Whitco or Bestop also used the same channel but they also supplied one in two piece for shipping purposes. All these tops required a "snap" on the end of the WS for the tops back then. They all had them.

During the 90's, Bestop changed the design of the WS channel to a little bit longer with a curve on the ends. Still a two piece design for shipping but it eliminated the snap all together.

So if you are using the later curved end WS channel, then the bikini top with the snaps won't fit correctly. You will have to cut the ends of the curved ended channel off to make room for the snaps that must be installed. Or, buy a new Bestop bikini top that does not have the snaps or another brand if they make them that way.

I also recommend the use of stainless steel 8-32 screws instead of sheet metal screws to secure the channel to the WS frame. Sheet metal screws have a tendency to rip out and enlarges the screw hole. 8-32 screws can be tapped into the sheet metal whether it be OEM or aftermarket WS frames. They have better holding power then sheet metal screws.
Hood Automotive lighting Picture frame Motor vehicle Vehicle


Yes, the screws are stainless, just blackened stainless.
Automotive parking light Automotive lighting Motor vehicle Hood Automotive design
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
337 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
thanks to all. Hey Bagas, as to painting my after thoughts now is to mock up the attaching strip first and make necessary holes then go paint it. It might save some minor damage to the paint when attaching channel after painting. neither right or wrong. Jeepfeller I do like the idea of the hose and obviously the stainless screws with tapping the holes. I do have the Bestop with the snaps but dont know about the channel if it came with the top or is generic after market and it is 2 piece. so thinking about it I will center the channel and place mounting holes where needed EXCEPT for the snap then see where the snap needs to be placed either on the channel or then cut channel to accommodate location of the snap. I do like the idea of the snap for better holding power. i will update later. Again thanks to all. Mike
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
337 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
PART #2 Fit and finish. got the attaching strip installed with a little adjustment here and there but overall no problems. But now when fitting the top to the channel my concern is about the snaps. See pics below. If I place the top leading edge into the channel as far as it will go which is to the seam then the snap on the top wont snap onto the newly installed snap that is attached to the channel. Too close and material is too thick to fold in that area. See pic #1. Keep in mind that I have not drilled a hole into the frame yet for the snap. I just have it in the hole that was predrilled in the channel. Then if I angle the snap end of the top out so as to give me more material to work with it should work but then it is hanging out and not as secure. See pic #2. Any suggestions? Or will everything work out with some use and stretching over time. Thanks Mike

Gas Rim Audio equipment Bicycle part Electrical wiring
Automotive lighting Automotive tire Electronic instrument Gadget Audio equipment
 

·
Premium Member
1984 Jeep CJ-7 Renegade
Joined
·
10,195 Posts
As I said, snap version of that top will not work with your current rail that has the curved ends. Cut the rail or find a rail that is straight and shorter. The snap must be mounted to the WS and not the rail.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
337 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
As I said, snap version of that top will not work with your current rail that has the curved ends. Cut the rail or find a rail that is straight and shorter. The snap must be mounted to the WS and not the rail.
Yes sir! I heard you BUT I did not listen. Now, after standing in the corner for a minute I will make it happen. Thank you
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top