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Are all bikini tops created equal?

afmoto

DURTY TJ
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Joined
Oct 19, 2017
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215
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Silicon Valley, CA, United States
I've used a Bestop for many years and it's basically my 'summer top'. I typically have my full doors and hardtop off by now (will get that done this weekend or next weekend) and get the bikini top installed. The bar only takes minutes to install but the top itself is a royal pain in the _ _ _! Worst part is getting the sides clipped into the door surrounds but if you do it at the end of the day, after the bikini top has been sitting out in the sun for the day (softened up), there will be a lot less cursing involved in the installation than if you try to stretch that darn thing on a cold morning. Every once in a while, it might still pop out of the front channel, which also sucks, but if you stretch it and install it real tight, it might only happen a handful of times per year. If you catch it early, it's very easy to fix and you don't have to reinstall the bikini top. Getting caught in the occasional rain is not a big deal, especially since I pulled all the carpeting out of my Jeep (love being able to hose out the interior).

The full doors and hardtop usually go back on sometime in November. If I lived in SoCal, I would probably sell the hardtop and just use a Bestop bikini all the time.
 

Plumber1

Tito's, Tacos and Trails
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May 27, 2019
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San Ramon, CA
I am a bit confused on what the OP is asking. If you are asking about a Bikini Top, then no they will not keep the inside of the jeep dry. I have a Bikini on my old YJ and a Safari on my current TJ. If it starts raining water will get in between the Bikini and the top of the windows and since the rear and sides are open in comes the rain. If you leave the jeep parked you will get a big puddle in the middle of the top and as soon as you try and move it the water will come pouring in. If I think rain is a possibility I install my full soft top, and if the rain does not show up off come the windows.

Now if you are talking about something to cover the jeep while its parked and it starts to rain then get a cab cover, or you can use a large plastic tarp. These are what I use

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Moab

Moab

TJ Addict
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Joined
Dec 15, 2018
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2,977
Location
El Segundo, California
I think I'm going to just run with the soft top all the way off or strapped down in the back. Then get a cab cover to leave in the security trunk I have for when I need it. At least then when I'm at home. I can keep the sun and rain off the inside as much as possible. The original owner of my Jeep left it outside with the top off. And I've spent some considerable time and money redoing it.

It just sounds like a bikini top will not do what I want it too. And not quickly. Plus having the top off is about the sun hitting your head anyway imho. And the wind. And the weather. And whatever else. :)

As an inbetween I can always just take my windows off like others have posted. Not a huge fan of the look. But it would at least keep things generally dry. I know rain's gonna get in along the sides.
 

AndyG

TJ Guru
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Jul 30, 2018
Messages
11,895
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Alabama
Your driest “open “ scenario is a soft top with no rear windows and hard doors .

Then a safari

Then a bikini

And a spiderweb is the best next to nothing type cover , gives a little shade , it’s like wearing your wife’s thong pa.........uh nevermind.

Incidentally, that girl on the yj could get hurt .
 

AndyG

TJ Guru
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Jul 30, 2018
Messages
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Alabama
I am a bit confused on what the OP is asking. If you are asking about a Bikini Top, then no they will not keep the inside of the jeep dry. I have a Bikini on my old YJ and a Safari on my current TJ. If it starts raining water will get in between the Bikini and the top of the windows and since the rear and sides are open in comes the rain. If you leave the jeep parked you will get a big puddle in the middle of the top and as soon as you try and move it the water will come pouring in. If I think rain is a possibility I install my full soft top, and if the rain does not show up off come the windows.

Now if you are talking about something to cover the jeep while its parked and it starts to rain then get a cab cover, or you can use a large plastic tarp. These are what I use

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This is a sharp rig guy, looks well done , well cared for and enjoyed.

How small do the trail covers roll up?
 

Bratman

New Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2018
Messages
10
Location
Whittier, CA, USA
I have a2001 TJ that when i got it new to me about a year ago or so, it had the tonto cover with a square back, like a mini truck.. I hated that top, but I wanted a soft top. I really liked the Rampage top that has zippered & velcro back and sides windows with a tie down top. In the top it has a bag to put the back and sides in for protection that slips into a special place in the bikini top. The original tonto top came with a sun roof. I kept that movable locking windshield mechanism with bars that swing back. So now my Rampage top has a sun roof too. I just put tube doors on it for Summer... At night I put a tarp over it to keep the cats and coyotes from sleeping or peeing in it.
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Sent from my SM-N950U using Tapatalk
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Jack72

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Jul 19, 2018
Messages
421
Location
Texas

This is what I’ve got and I’ve been very happy with it. Works better than you’d think for keeping the sun from blazing down on you. It requires no header, is quick to throw on, doesn’t interfere with the soft top and is less than $100.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
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Dennis Velez

Member
Joined
Dec 12, 2017
Messages
81
Location
Bristow, VA, United States
I am a bit confused on what the OP is asking. If you are asking about a Bikini Top, then no they will not keep the inside of the jeep dry. I have a Bikini on my old YJ and a Safari on my current TJ. If it starts raining water will get in between the Bikini and the top of the windows and since the rear and sides are open in comes the rain. If you leave the jeep parked you will get a big puddle in the middle of the top and as soon as you try and move it the water will come pouring in. If I think rain is a possibility I install my full soft top, and if the rain does not show up off come the windows.

Now if you are talking about something to cover the jeep while its parked and it starts to rain then get a cab cover, or you can use a large plastic tarp. These are what I use

View attachment 101547

View attachment 101548

View attachment 101551

View attachment 101552

I'm looking at getting this same top. I looked at the install instructions, pretty straightforward. But how do you get the rear center strap around the spare tire holder with the spare on.
 

TJBob

TJ Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 17, 2019
Messages
165
Location
South central Indiana
I used to run the good old stock framed soft top. Switched to a Bestop trecktop nx. I love it. Takes about 3-5 min to get the windows back in, if rain is coming. With the windows out, it’s practically a bikini top. Plus I like the sun rider. Let’s you have an open top, and keeps the back seat shaded for the kiddos. Easy to remove the whole top, and it all fits in the trunk area including the header if your crafty. I roll the top, and rear window up around the header. Lay it across the wheel wells behind the back seat, and store the side windows upright between the backseat and rolled up top.
289F7798-9065-4B2E-9B39-650D605113B9.jpeg
 
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psrivats

TJ Expert
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Jun 4, 2018
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OR, USA
Unless you have the type of header that mounts permanently to the windshield frame with screws (vs. the clamp-on style), there is no "easy on, easy off" with a bikini top. My Bestop clamp-on header/bikini was a PITA to put on and take off. Sold it and never looked back. Like @JEEPCJTJ, it's windows out and I'm good, when running the soft top.

I have been doing some research since I posted the other thread (asking about the smittybilt net + Bestop targa). It looks like Jeep offered what is called as a "Sun bonnet" top that covered the front passenger area. It latched on in the front just like a OEM soft top, and it would get tied with straps/velcro behind the sound pods. Sadly it's been long discontinued. I found old pictures on the other forums showing this. This is the best option imo next to the factory top. Wish Bestop would bring it back.


Here is a official document from Jeep with all the part numbers for this sub bonnet top if anyone needs it. See page 93.
 

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psrivats

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OR, USA
@glwood @Chris

I think I found the best bikini top option for TJs. Was browsing Craigslist and saw an ad deep in the local suburb for a "genuine Mopar 2003 half top" with not-so-clear picturesb and couple part numbers for $100. Decided to check it out. And oh boy, was I glad I did.

I found the mythical and the long, long discontinued "Sun bonnet" top in brand new shape. I wrote about this in my post above and I can't believe I actually came across one. Here are some photos.

The latch is just like the OEM soft top and the fabric material is exactly the same. The sides tuck into the soft top door surrounds like the OEM top. In the back, they tie behind the sound pods. The quality is really fantastic.

The seller had no idea what it was, except to say that his dad had a Jeep a long while ago (and sold it years ago) and they came across this as they were clearing the garage for a move. He said it comes as is, no hardware, take it or leave it. I gave him the money and bought it with me.

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Chris

Administrator
Staff Member
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@glwood @Chris

I think I found the best bikini top option for TJs. Was browsing Craigslist and saw an ad deep in the local suburb for a "genuine Mopar 2003 half top" with not-so-clear picturesb and couple part numbers for $100. Decided to check it out. And oh boy, was I glad I did.

I found the mythical and the long, long discontinued "Sun bonnet" top in brand new shape. I wrote about this in my post above and I can't believe I actually came across one. Here are some photos.

The latch is just like the OEM soft top and the fabric material is exactly the same. The sides tuck into the soft top door surrounds like the OEM top. In the back, they tie behind the sound pods. The quality is really fantastic.

The seller had no idea what it was, except to say that his dad had a Jeep a long while ago (and sold it years ago) and they came across this as they were clearing the garage for a move. He said it comes as is, no hardware, take it or leave it. I gave him the money and bought it with me.

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I didn't even know such a top existed to be honest. But then again, I haven't followed bikini tops too much, so that's probably why.

Sounds like you made a nice score though!
 

Starrs

TJ Guru
Joined
Aug 1, 2017
Messages
6,355
Location
Indiana, United States
@glwood @Chris

I think I found the best bikini top option for TJs. Was browsing Craigslist and saw an ad deep in the local suburb for a "genuine Mopar 2003 half top" with not-so-clear picturesb and couple part numbers for $100. Decided to check it out. And oh boy, was I glad I did.

I found the mythical and the long, long discontinued "Sun bonnet" top in brand new shape. I wrote about this in my post above and I can't believe I actually came across one. Here are some photos.

The latch is just like the OEM soft top and the fabric material is exactly the same. The sides tuck into the soft top door surrounds like the OEM top. In the back, they tie behind the sound pods. The quality is really fantastic.

The seller had no idea what it was, except to say that his dad had a Jeep a long while ago (and sold it years ago) and they came across this as they were clearing the garage for a move. He said it comes as is, no hardware, take it or leave it. I gave him the money and bought it with me.

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Take some pics when you install it. Very cool! Vintage Mopar is never a bad thing
 
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DaveC

TJ Addict
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Joined
Jan 3, 2019
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1,168
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Gilbert, Arizona
@glwood @Chris

I think I found the best bikini top option for TJs. Was browsing Craigslist and saw an ad deep in the local suburb for a "genuine Mopar 2003 half top" with not-so-clear picturesb and couple part numbers for $100. Decided to check it out. And oh boy, was I glad I did.

I found the mythical and the long, long discontinued "Sun bonnet" top in brand new shape. I wrote about this in my post above and I can't believe I actually came across one. Here are some photos.

The latch is just like the OEM soft top and the fabric material is exactly the same. The sides tuck into the soft top door surrounds like the OEM top. In the back, they tie behind the sound pods. The quality is really fantastic.

The seller had no idea what it was, except to say that his dad had a Jeep a long while ago (and sold it years ago) and they came across this as they were clearing the garage for a move. He said it comes as is, no hardware, take it or leave it. I gave him the money and bought it with me.

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Mine came with the OEM bikini when I bought it from the PO (original owner). Love it. Also, while I have no scientific proof, I'd swear that with the tonneau cover and the bikini, the wind in the cab is much less than with the bikini by itself.
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psrivats

TJ Expert
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Joined
Jun 4, 2018
Messages
3,865
Location
OR, USA
I didn't even know such a top existed to be honest. But then again, I haven't followed bikini tops too much, so that's probably why.

Sounds like you made a nice score though!


Well we now have the part numbers for all the years and colors. Hope it's useful for others in the future if they search for something like this.
 

psrivats

TJ Expert
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Joined
Jun 4, 2018
Messages
3,865
Location
OR, USA
Take some pics when you install it. Very cool! Vintage Mopar is never a bad thing

Will do!

Mine came with the OEM bikini when I bought it from the PO (original owner). Love it. Also, while I have no scientific proof, I'd swear that with the tonneau cover and the bikini, the wind in the cab is much less than with the bikini by itself.
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Very cool! I can see myself using this top quite a bit. Is the tonneau cover OEM too?
 

Chris

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Well we now have the part numbers for all the years and colors. Hope it's useful for others in the future if they search for something like this.

Very true. Sometimes what you need is the part numbers, and with items like this it can be difficult to find them, as the parts catalogs have dropped the part numbers from them.

I'm sure at some point someone is going to stumble upon this and be happy they did. I never even knew about it!