The endless dilemma soft top vs. hard top

entropy

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I used to love the soft top on my 2018 JL. It was quiet, solid, and extremely easy to go topless back and forth. The beauty of it was for road trips, I absolutely hate driving on southern California freeways with a topless jeep, the noise is disturbing. With a soft top you can drive on the freeway with top on and good music :rock:, then once you get out of the freeway pull over and in 1 minute you are topless. We did it when we went to Yosemite last year. Top on for the drive, and top off during our vacation, was amazing.

I couldn't find a soft top for my 2019 JL, they are just very hard to find on 2DR jeeps around LA. So I went hard top with headliner. I really like it, and it is even quieter. But am I ever gonna go topless on a Roadtrip? not gonna happen.... The hardtop is actually very easy to remove, it only takes 5 mins or so, but you either go top on or topless, there's no back and forth switching.

I looked into buying a soft top to have the option but the best top doesn't look that great to be honest, as it can't even go full topless like the mopar soft top. I also watched the installation video and it looked very annoying with brackets and a bunch of things that would take like 2 hrs to install, so if I wanted to go back to hard top I would have to go through the same painful process.

This really boils it down to buying a mopar soft top, it is expensive but might be worth it. Can you have the mopar soft-top brackets installed while with the hard top on? so if I wanna go with a soft top for a trip all I have to do is take the hard top on, leave it in the garage and put the soft top windows on? Somewhere in the jeep manual it says that "having both tops installed is a safety concern and it is not advised", I am not sure if this includes simply having the sliding brackets installed, not the entire thing.





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S2k Chris

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This really boils it down to buying a mopar soft top, it is expensive but might be worth it. Can you have the mopar soft-top brackets installed while with the hard top on? so if I wanna go with a soft top for a trip all I have to do is take the hard top on, leave it in the garage and put the soft top windows on?
No. But it takes about 15-20 min to install the soft top from naked. Bolt on 8 brackets (1 above each door, 2x back corners, 2x on roll bar), drop the top onto the brackets, off you go.
 
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entropy

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No. But it takes about 15-20 min to install the soft top from naked. Bolt on 8 brackets (1 above each door, 2x back corners, 2x on roll bar), drop the top onto the brackets, off you go.
This is with the mopar one right? seems to be way easier to install than the best top. 15-20 min is not that bad.
 

Bill 13

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No. But it takes about 15-20 min to install the soft top from naked. Bolt on 8 brackets (1 above each door, 2x back corners, 2x on roll bar), drop the top onto the brackets, off you go.
Agreed. You can actually leave the roll bar brackets that the soft top pivots from on forever if you want and the other stuff is super quick to change in/out.

The ease of the JL soft top is probably the single best thing I love the most versus my old JK and TJ. It is so easy to put up and down that I find myself doing it even more often than I did in the past.
 
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Agreed. You can actually leave the roll bar brackets that the soft top pivots from on forever if you want and the other stuff is super quick to change in/out.

The ease of the JL soft top is probably the single best thing I love the most versus my old JK and TJ. It is so easy to put up and down that I find myself doing it even more often than I did in the past.
Yeah I used to pull over on the side of the road and take it off in less than a minute after getting off the freeway. The design is outstanding. Bestop doesn't look that great.
 

TJ2018

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This really boils it down to buying a mopar soft top, it is expensive but might be worth it. Can you have the mopar soft-top brackets installed while with the hard top on? so if I wanna go with a soft top for a trip all I have to do is take the hard top on, leave it in the garage and put the soft top windows on? Somewhere in the jeep manual it says that "having both tops installed is a safety concern and it is not advised", I am not sure if this includes simply having the sliding brackets installed, not the entire thing.
Have you thought about going with the Sunrider for the hard top? I love the convenience... takes like 5 seconds to open or close. Easy enough to remove with the hard top when you wanna go nekkid, but VERY convenient for road trips with the hard top on.

Sunrider.jpg
IMG_1206.JPG
 

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Maybe you could buy the Mopar softtop and sell the hard top?
 
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Have you thought about going with the Sunrider for the hard top? I love the convenience... takes like 5 seconds to open or close. Easy enough to remove with the hard top when you wanna go nekkid, but VERY convenient for road trips with the hard top on.

Sunrider.jpg
IMG_1206.JPG
That looks pretty sweet. I mean the freedom panels are alright but my jeep is 2DR so there's barely any space to store them lol.... so I might look into that. How much are they? Is that picture in Mt. Pinos?

and yes Waiting, I've thought about selling the hardtop but I kinda like it too.
 

S2k Chris

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I love having the dual top group. I love that I basically get a "new" car every 6 months when I swap the tops. And the things that annoy me in the soft top (no rear defrost/wiper, PITA to put stuff in the trunk) are solved with the HT.
 

TJ2018

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That looks pretty sweet. I mean the freedom panels are alright but my jeep is 2DR so there's barely any space to store them lol.... so I might look into that. How much are they? Is that picture in Mt. Pinos?

and yes Waiting, I've thought about selling the hardtop but I kinda like it too.
Funny you mention storing the panels because that's exactly why we got the Sunrider. When we were on a trip or vacation the freedom panels were difficult (or impossible) to store. It's absolutely one of my favorite accessories. The standard fabric costs $699 and the premium Twill is $799. I bought mine from Quadratec. Don't know if you might find some better deals out there.

https://www.quadratec.com/p/bestop/twill-sunrider-hardtop-20-jeep-wrangler-jl

That pic is from Yosemite (Badger pass turnout). The one below is our side trip to Sequoia NP.

DSC_0149e2 1cr.jpg
 
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I love having the dual top group. I love that I basically get a "new" car every 6 months when I swap the tops. And the things that annoy me in the soft top (no rear defrost/wiper, PITA to put stuff in the trunk) are solved with the HT.
What's PITA? are you talking about the rear window? we used to just detach the bottom of the rear soft plastic window and lay it down on top of the roof while still attached to the top, put stuff in, then connect it back, wasn't a big deal.
 

S2k Chris

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What's PITA? are you talking about the rear window? we used to just detach the bottom of the rear soft plastic window and lay it down on top of the roof while still attached to the top, put stuff in, then connect it back, wasn't a big deal.
It's a PITA vs just flipping up the glass. Standing in my driveway on a nice day? NBD. Trying to wrangle two kids into the car, load groceries, etc, in the rain? PITA.
 
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It's a PITA vs just flipping up the glass. Standing in my driveway on a nice day? NBD. Trying to wrangle two kids into the car, load groceries, etc, in the rain? PITA.
but you can flip the soft top as well, that's what I am saying. it takes maybe 10 seconds to disconnect the bottom from the vehicle, then you just flip it up, lay it on top of the car.

I honestly think the soft top is actually more convenient. We went on a camping trip once with kayaks loaded on the top and mountain backs on the back. We would just take the back windows off and we were able to load and unload without having to remove the kayaks and bikes. Then put the windows back on.
 

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FWIW if you have the rear seat removed the freedom panels stand up nicely on one side and strap to the roll bar.
I put it behind the drivers side, they don't block any view and take up very little space in the back.
 

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I really love the Mopar soft top idea, but the price :piggybank: and where to store the hard top when you have a condo :idea:
 

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