Converting the Lange Hoist-A-Top into something usable on the JL

TXRubicon

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 8, 2017
Messages
467
Reaction score
972
Location
Houston
Vehicle(s)
'18 Firecracker Red JLUR, '18 Porsche 718 Cayman
A cautionary tale for anyone switching from a JK to a JL with a Lange Hoist-A-Top hardtop lift. I had the Lange on my JK for 3 years and it worked really well. No issues and always felt comfortable with how it hung with the JK top.

Fast forward to October when I purchased my current JL and wanted to use the lift with the new Jeep. I spent the $100 to buy the JL conversion kit and couldn’t believe the garbage setup they sent over. The rear hook is now massive and has to be unscrewed from the lifting blade every single time you want to use it. The hook also crimps the rear window seal really badly and pushes against the inside of the hardtop with such force that it was messing up the hardtop liner and digging into the hardtop. The front hooks never sat squarely inside the hardtop either. They were basically clamping onto the outside instead of lifting from the inside. The rear glass also had to be kept open as the hook pushed up against the rear glass if it was closed. Looked like an accident waiting to happen. For $100, it was a complete joke. A horrible hook and a couple pieces of foam.

s3qS26Y.jpg


I spoke with the folks at Topsy back in October and they told me they were working on an adapter bar to be able to use their awesome hard top brackets with the Lange. The hooks basically install over the rear hinge bolts on the hardtop and don't put any stress on the glass. The hardtop can be left closed.

ZtMHaVr.jpg


The Topsy Lange T-Bar adapter basically takes the place of the single rear hook on the Lange lifting blade and gives it two rear lift points to be used with the Topsy straps. These straps clip into the Topsy brackets.

etR7ARj.jpg


cKdrRSb.jpg


This took care of the rear nicely, but up front, I still wasn't happy with how the Lange hooks sat inside the hardtop. I ended up buying some stainless eyebolts and replaced the hooks with those. The Topsy front strap now just clips into the eyebolts and lifts across the entire hardtop instead of pinch points with the Lange hooks. The other nice thing is since I'm using the straps rather than hooks, I was able to adjust the width of the front bar to the narrowest setting making the arms much more stable.

KVYIMEW.jpg


This is how it sits in the garage - These pics were taken before I swapped the front eyebolts out, but its MUCH MUCH more stable and so much better on the rear of the hardtop.

ReqENQE.jpg


X5Kx6a2.jpg


Long story short, don’t waste your money on upgrading your existing Lange with the Lange kit. It’s junk. Even if you do buy the Lange (the lifting blade and hoist are GREAT!) replace the hooks with the Topsy products! Get the Topsy bar adapter and strap kit for about the same amount of $ (slightly less) and call it a day.

http://topsyproducts.com/products/hinge_hook_hoist_bracket

Cheers.





Advertisement

 

JohnnyB54

Well-Known Member
First Name
John
Joined
Apr 5, 2018
Messages
157
Reaction score
136
Location
Ronkonkoma, Long Island NY
Vehicle(s)
2018 Sahara
A cautionary tale for anyone switching from a JK to a JL with a Lange Hoist-A-Top hardtop lift. I had the Lange on my JK for 3 years and it worked really well. No issues and always felt comfortable with how it hung with the JK top.

Fast forward to October when I purchased my current JL and wanted to use the lift with the new Jeep. I spent the $100 to buy the JL conversion kit and couldn’t believe the garbage setup they sent over. The rear hook is now massive and has to be unscrewed from the lifting blade every single time you want to use it. The hook also crimps the rear window seal really badly and pushes against the inside of the hardtop with such force that it was messing up the hardtop liner and digging into the hardtop. The front hooks never sat squarely inside the hardtop either. They were basically clamping onto the outside instead of lifting from the inside. The rear glass also had to be kept open as the hook pushed up against the rear glass if it was closed. Looked like an accident waiting to happen. For $100, it was a complete joke. A horrible hook and a couple pieces of foam.

s3qS26Y.jpg


I spoke with the folks at Topsy back in October and they told me they were working on an adapter bar to be able to use their awesome hard top brackets with the Lange. The hooks basically install over the rear hinge bolts on the hardtop and don't put any stress on the glass. The hardtop can be left closed.

ZtMHaVr.jpg


The Topsy Lange T-Bar adapter basically takes the place of the single rear hook on the Lange lifting blade and gives it two rear lift points to be used with the Topsy straps. These straps clip into the Topsy brackets.

etR7ARj.jpg


cKdrRSb.jpg


This took care of the rear nicely, but up front, I still wasn't happy with how the Lange hooks sat inside the hardtop. I ended up buying some stainless eyebolts and replaced the hooks with those. The Topsy front strap now just clips into the eyebolts and lifts across the entire hardtop instead of pinch points with the Lange hooks. The other nice thing is since I'm using the straps rather than hooks, I was able to adjust the width of the front bar to the narrowest setting making the arms much more stable.

KVYIMEW.jpg


This is how it sits in the garage - These pics were taken before I swapped the front eyebolts out, but its MUCH MUCH more stable and so much better on the rear of the hardtop.

ReqENQE.jpg


X5Kx6a2.jpg


Long story short, don’t waste your money on upgrading your existing Lange with the Lange kit. It’s junk. Even if you do buy the Lange (the lifting blade and hoist are GREAT!) replace the hooks with the Topsy products! Get the Topsy bar adapter and strap kit for about the same amount of $ (slightly less) and call it a day.

http://topsyproducts.com/products/hinge_hook_hoist_bracket

Loved your post on the Facebook page (I was the one with all the questions). Excellent information. The only thing I may do different is to use an adjustable strap over the Topsy strap.

Cheers.
 

OldBird

Well-Known Member
First Name
Timothy
Joined
Oct 9, 2018
Messages
265
Reaction score
295
Location
Washington State
Vehicle(s)
2019 Mojito! JLUR
Thanks for the detailed post - I was planning on going with the Racor lift, and it looks like these Topsy add ons would make that work perfectly too.
 

Akbill

Well-Known Member
First Name
Bill
Joined
Aug 18, 2018
Messages
267
Reaction score
97
Location
Alaska
Vehicle(s)
'19 JLUR
They don't show a product page for the T-Bar Adapter for Lange Hoist-A-Top® & Top Cap EZ Lift. What does this product do? I understand the brackets for the rear (separate product).
 
OP
TXRubicon

TXRubicon

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 8, 2017
Messages
467
Reaction score
972
Location
Houston
Vehicle(s)
'18 Firecracker Red JLUR, '18 Porsche 718 Cayman
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
The standard Lange setup is a single hook on the rear as pictured below. The Topsy product replaces that single hook with a T-Bar so you now have two lifting points on the rear.

lange-originals-electric-power-hoist-a-top-for-wrangler-jl-35.jpg


They don't show a product page for the T-Bar Adapter for Lange Hoist-A-Top® & Top Cap EZ Lift. What does this product do? I understand the brackets for the rear (separate product).
 

Akbill

Well-Known Member
First Name
Bill
Joined
Aug 18, 2018
Messages
267
Reaction score
97
Location
Alaska
Vehicle(s)
'19 JLUR
The standard Lange setup is a single hook on the rear as pictured below. The Topsy product replaces that single hook with a T-Bar so you now have two lifting points on the rear.

lange-originals-electric-power-hoist-a-top-for-wrangler-jl-35.jpg
And what product includes the straps that are used around the front of the hard top?
I am surprised the flat rear window hook performs so poorly on the Lange, that is supposed to be their new and improved attachment point for the rear, and is supposed to easily allow the window to stay shut. How wide was the Lange rear hook that you got with the Lange JL kit? form their website: "The rear Smart Hook™ allows you to lift and store your hardtop with the rear window closed which will improve the balance as well as take up less storage space. "
014-100_jpg_small.gif
 
OP
TXRubicon

TXRubicon

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 8, 2017
Messages
467
Reaction score
972
Location
Houston
Vehicle(s)
'18 Firecracker Red JLUR, '18 Porsche 718 Cayman
  • Thread starter
  • Thread Starter
  • #7
The 4-door kit includes the front and rear straps and brackets.

I know they say it's "new and improved" but it's definitely not better. New, yes. I'll have to measure it but it's about 6" wide. The window does shut, but it does press against the hook. If you search the forum, others have complained about how much stress it appears to be placing on the glass with the window closed as well.

And what product includes the straps that are used around the front of the hard top?
I am surprised the flat rear window hook performs so poorly on the Lange, that is supposed to be their new and improved attachment point for the rear, and is supposed to easily allow the window to stay shut. How wide was the Lange rear hook that you got with the Lange JL kit? form their website: "The rear Smart Hook™ allows you to lift and store your hardtop with the rear window closed which will improve the balance as well as take up less storage space. "
014-100_jpg_small.gif
 

Akbill

Well-Known Member
First Name
Bill
Joined
Aug 18, 2018
Messages
267
Reaction score
97
Location
Alaska
Vehicle(s)
'19 JLUR
The 4-door kit includes the front and rear straps and brackets.

I know they say it's "new and improved" but it's definitely not better. New, yes. I'll have to measure it but it's about 6" wide. The window does shut, but it does press against the hook. If you search the forum, others have complained about how much stress it appears to be placing on the glass with the window closed as well.
OK, yeah that's the new one. Well based on what you report, I am ordering the Topsy parts today! thanks
 

xterraguy

New Member
First Name
Joe
Joined
Oct 7, 2018
Messages
2
Reaction score
1
Location
SC
Vehicle(s)
2012 Pro-4X Xterra, 2018 JLU Sierra
Do you guys know if there is any difference between the Lange JL/JK power lifts other than that rear hook? I ask because I'm looking at buying one for a JLU, and it costs $100 more than the JKU version. If I'm going to convert it with the Topsy kit and t-bar anyway, is there any reason I shouldn't go with the cheaper JK lift?
 

RussJeep1

Banned
Banned
Joined
Oct 12, 2016
Messages
2,550
Reaction score
1,810
Location
Westchester, NY
Vehicle(s)
JLU Sahara
@TXRubicon : thanks for posting this. For me it was one of those situations of impeccable timing where a project I'm working on (a hitch based hard top hoist) and hope to post here if it works, dovetailed perfectly with your introducing me to the Topsy world.

Until moments ago I was going with a home brewed "T" lift. Now I'm thinking of using some of the Topsy gear for this and considering more of an "I" lift.
 

Akbill

Well-Known Member
First Name
Bill
Joined
Aug 18, 2018
Messages
267
Reaction score
97
Location
Alaska
Vehicle(s)
'19 JLUR
The 4-door kit includes the front and rear straps and brackets.

I know they say it's "new and improved" but it's definitely not better. New, yes. I'll have to measure it but it's about 6" wide. The window does shut, but it does press against the hook. If you search the forum, others have complained about how much stress it appears to be placing on the glass with the window closed as well.
Do you think the topsy modified lange hoist could also hold the soft top somehow?
 

Benny

Member
First Name
Kenneth
Joined
Apr 30, 2018
Messages
18
Reaction score
35
Location
Upstate New York
Vehicle(s)
2018 JL Sport S Ocean Blue, 2012 Dodge Challenger
A cautionary tale for anyone switching from a JK to a JL with a Lange Hoist-A-Top hardtop lift. I had the Lange on my JK for 3 years and it worked really well. No issues and always felt comfortable with how it hung with the JK top.

Fast forward to October when I purchased my current JL and wanted to use the lift with the new Jeep. I spent the $100 to buy the JL conversion kit and couldn’t believe the garbage setup they sent over. The rear hook is now massive and has to be unscrewed from the lifting blade every single time you want to use it. The hook also crimps the rear window seal really badly and pushes against the inside of the hardtop with such force that it was messing up the hardtop liner and digging into the hardtop. The front hooks never sat squarely inside the hardtop either. They were basically clamping onto the outside instead of lifting from the inside. The rear glass also had to be kept open as the hook pushed up against the rear glass if it was closed. Looked like an accident waiting to happen. For $100, it was a complete joke. A horrible hook and a couple pieces of foam.

s3qS26Y.jpg


I spoke with the folks at Topsy back in October and they told me they were working on an adapter bar to be able to use their awesome hard top brackets with the Lange. The hooks basically install over the rear hinge bolts on the hardtop and don't put any stress on the glass. The hardtop can be left closed.

ZtMHaVr.jpg


The Topsy Lange T-Bar adapter basically takes the place of the single rear hook on the Lange lifting blade and gives it two rear lift points to be used with the Topsy straps. These straps clip into the Topsy brackets.

etR7ARj.jpg


cKdrRSb.jpg


This took care of the rear nicely, but up front, I still wasn't happy with how the Lange hooks sat inside the hardtop. I ended up buying some stainless eyebolts and replaced the hooks with those. The Topsy front strap now just clips into the eyebolts and lifts across the entire hardtop instead of pinch points with the Lange hooks. The other nice thing is since I'm using the straps rather than hooks, I was able to adjust the width of the front bar to the narrowest setting making the arms much more stable.

KVYIMEW.jpg


This is how it sits in the garage - These pics were taken before I swapped the front eyebolts out, but its MUCH MUCH more stable and so much better on the rear of the hardtop.

ReqENQE.jpg


X5Kx6a2.jpg


Long story short, don’t waste your money on upgrading your existing Lange with the Lange kit. It’s junk. Even if you do buy the Lange (the lifting blade and hoist are GREAT!) replace the hooks with the Topsy products! Get the Topsy bar adapter and strap kit for about the same amount of $ (slightly less) and call it a day.

http://topsyproducts.com/products/hinge_hook_hoist_bracket

Cheers.
Thanks for the detailed write up. I have been trying to find a way to convert my old hoist a top. I bought it for my YJ in the 90's and have made it work for the 2 TJ's I had after that. Still need to figure out how the front will attach with a 2 door JL hard top.

Thanks
Benny
 

aprez27

Well-Known Member
First Name
Andrew
Joined
Jan 22, 2019
Messages
251
Reaction score
225
Location
Long Island NY
Vehicle(s)
2018 JL Wrangler Rubicon
Vehicle Showcase
1
A cautionary tale for anyone switching from a JK to a JL with a Lange Hoist-A-Top hardtop lift. I had the Lange on my JK for 3 years and it worked really well. No issues and always felt comfortable with how it hung with the JK top.

Fast forward to October when I purchased my current JL and wanted to use the lift with the new Jeep. I spent the $100 to buy the JL conversion kit and couldn’t believe the garbage setup they sent over. The rear hook is now massive and has to be unscrewed from the lifting blade every single time you want to use it. The hook also crimps the rear window seal really badly and pushes against the inside of the hardtop with such force that it was messing up the hardtop liner and digging into the hardtop. The front hooks never sat squarely inside the hardtop either. They were basically clamping onto the outside instead of lifting from the inside. The rear glass also had to be kept open as the hook pushed up against the rear glass if it was closed. Looked like an accident waiting to happen. For $100, it was a complete joke. A horrible hook and a couple pieces of foam.

s3qS26Y.jpg


I spoke with the folks at Topsy back in October and they told me they were working on an adapter bar to be able to use their awesome hard top brackets with the Lange. The hooks basically install over the rear hinge bolts on the hardtop and don't put any stress on the glass. The hardtop can be left closed.

ZtMHaVr.jpg


The Topsy Lange T-Bar adapter basically takes the place of the single rear hook on the Lange lifting blade and gives it two rear lift points to be used with the Topsy straps. These straps clip into the Topsy brackets.

etR7ARj.jpg


cKdrRSb.jpg


This took care of the rear nicely, but up front, I still wasn't happy with how the Lange hooks sat inside the hardtop. I ended up buying some stainless eyebolts and replaced the hooks with those. The Topsy front strap now just clips into the eyebolts and lifts across the entire hardtop instead of pinch points with the Lange hooks. The other nice thing is since I'm using the straps rather than hooks, I was able to adjust the width of the front bar to the narrowest setting making the arms much more stable.

KVYIMEW.jpg


This is how it sits in the garage - These pics were taken before I swapped the front eyebolts out, but its MUCH MUCH more stable and so much better on the rear of the hardtop.

ReqENQE.jpg


X5Kx6a2.jpg


Long story short, don’t waste your money on upgrading your existing Lange with the Lange kit. It’s junk. Even if you do buy the Lange (the lifting blade and hoist are GREAT!) replace the hooks with the Topsy products! Get the Topsy bar adapter and strap kit for about the same amount of $ (slightly less) and call it a day.

http://topsyproducts.com/products/hinge_hook_hoist_bracket

Cheers.

Great write up. I spent 9 years worried about my JKU hardtop on my TJ Lange hoist. No conversion kit, just worked (barely). Just purchased the new kit for my JLU and may try your fix for it.
 

Mru1975

New Member
First Name
Michael
Joined
Apr 13, 2019
Messages
2
Reaction score
2
Location
PNW
Vehicle(s)
2018 JLUS
A cautionary tale for anyone switching from a JK to a JL with a Lange Hoist-A-Top hardtop lift. I had the Lange on my JK for 3 years and it worked really well. No issues and always felt comfortable with how it hung with the JK top.

Fast forward to October when I purchased my current JL and wanted to use the lift with the new Jeep. I spent the $100 to buy the JL conversion kit and couldn’t believe the garbage setup they sent over. The rear hook is now massive and has to be unscrewed from the lifting blade every single time you want to use it. The hook also crimps the rear window seal really badly and pushes against the inside of the hardtop with such force that it was messing up the hardtop liner and digging into the hardtop. The front hooks never sat squarely inside the hardtop either. They were basically clamping onto the outside instead of lifting from the inside. The rear glass also had to be kept open as the hook pushed up against the rear glass if it was closed. Looked like an accident waiting to happen. For $100, it was a complete joke. A horrible hook and a couple pieces of foam.

s3qS26Y.jpg


I spoke with the folks at Topsy back in October and they told me they were working on an adapter bar to be able to use their awesome hard top brackets with the Lange. The hooks basically install over the rear hinge bolts on the hardtop and don't put any stress on the glass. The hardtop can be left closed.

ZtMHaVr.jpg


The Topsy Lange T-Bar adapter basically takes the place of the single rear hook on the Lange lifting blade and gives it two rear lift points to be used with the Topsy straps. These straps clip into the Topsy brackets.

etR7ARj.jpg


cKdrRSb.jpg


This took care of the rear nicely, but up front, I still wasn't happy with how the Lange hooks sat inside the hardtop. I ended up buying some stainless eyebolts and replaced the hooks with those. The Topsy front strap now just clips into the eyebolts and lifts across the entire hardtop instead of pinch points with the Lange hooks. The other nice thing is since I'm using the straps rather than hooks, I was able to adjust the width of the front bar to the narrowest setting making the arms much more stable.

KVYIMEW.jpg


This is how it sits in the garage - These pics were taken before I swapped the front eyebolts out, but its MUCH MUCH more stable and so much better on the rear of the hardtop.

ReqENQE.jpg


X5Kx6a2.jpg


Long story short, don’t waste your money on upgrading your existing Lange with the Lange kit. It’s junk. Even if you do buy the Lange (the lifting blade and hoist are GREAT!) replace the hooks with the Topsy products! Get the Topsy bar adapter and strap kit for about the same amount of $ (slightly less) and call it a day.

http://topsyproducts.com/products/hinge_hook_hoist_bracket

Cheers.
Nice Jeep by the way! Were you able to use the JK topsy brackets or did you need to buy new brackets for the JL?
 

Microday

New Member
Joined
Feb 17, 2019
Messages
3
Reaction score
4
Location
Parkville, Mo
Vehicle(s)
HellaYella Rubicon
I’m using my JK Lange kit on the JL with one simple modification. I bent the rear hook at the same angle of the new roof lip and the back up into the bar. I do have to unbolt the hook and slide the hook from the bottom of the top and then refasten to the bar. Adds about 1 minute to my removal.

image.jpg
 

Advertisement




Jim Marsh Chrysler Jeep
 



Advertisement
Top