I want to be like the LJ guys

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
Gold Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
Well not really like them, But I want my bikini top to seal up around the doors like the TJ/LJ tops.

Sooooo I drug out the ol Singer 211 industrial sewing machine and placed a order at SailRite.


The plan is to make a "bikini top" that is as long as my new cage. It will slide in the windshield track like a regular top. The plan is to have it the same width as the full soft top back to the original hoop, then taper to the back hoop. I'm going to add the "flaps" that Velcro around the small framework that surrounds the door. Once done I'll make a bracket to hold the frame to the cage so the bestop bow won't be needed. The section right behind the door will be similar to the front of the bestop side panel. Slide in the bottom channel, velcro to the door frame, and then the back will attach with straps like a windjammer. Also the vertical frame at the back of the door will be pinned so it can come out with the side panel.20201216_162934.jpg20201216_153742.jpg20201216_153745.jpg20201216_153830.jpg20201216_153945.jpg20201216_160039.jpg20201216_160932.jpg20201216_160948.jpg20201216_160955.jpg
As far as sliding in the tracks. A piece of .040 x 1/2" smooth plastic banding sewn in the edge works great.
 

mhinchliffe

CJ-8 Member
Member
City
W-S
State
NC
Looks like you really paid attention in home ec.........I took it too and can sew as well. Trying to instill the same in both kids. Great work right there.
 

designerRob

CJ-8 Member
Silver Member
Member
City
Allen Park
State
MI
Great plan and nice machine. How will the green plastic banding be used? Your machine has no problem sewing through the black plastic windshield flap? Very nice ?
 

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
Gold Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
Looks like you really paid attention in home ec.........I took it too and can sew as well. Trying to instill the same in both kids. Great work right there.

I did learn back in school......Then about 10 years ago I made custom upper doors for my crawler........that's when I bought the machine and learned much more.
mounds112312.JPG
 

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
Gold Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
Great plan and nice machine. How will the green plastic banding be used? Your machine has no problem sewing through the black plastic windshield flap? Very nice ?

The banding gets sewn in-between the folded edge of the material, then it will slide in the windshield channel. there is a pic in the post of the sample I tried. The machine has NO trouble sewing it. Me on the other hand....That commercial machine is WAY to fast......like 600 inches a minute if you mat it :eek:. I have yet to find something it won't sew, If it fits under the foot it sews. I've done 6 layers of Jeep top.........just to see if it would :D
 

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
Gold Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
After getting my A.D.D. under control. ( I started making the old dump truck into a trailer for the tractors)

The roll of top material showed up, so I started measuring, comparing, measuring, drawing lines with disappearing marker, measuring, and then cutting. Then I used the two sided tape and ran the plastic banding across the front and down both sides. The banding made the sides a little stiffer and should help with flapping. The front wasn't quite thick enough for the windshield channel so I folded it over again and re-sewed it.

After the 1st fit I'm happy so far. The sides by the door frames seem to be in the right spot, And the rear width looks good.

Next will be making the side flaps to wrap the door frames and trimming, finishing, and tie-down straps for the back.

On a side note. I found the original bars I made to hold my windshield frame and they're going to work for the new top. 20201219_140313.jpg20201219_140332.jpg20201219_140821.jpg20201219_151545.jpg20201219_154123.jpg20201219_170846.jpg20201219_170902.jpg20201219_170921.jpg20201219_182544.jpg
 

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
Gold Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
Not a lot of progress. But I did get the "flaps" that wrap around the door frames made. Now I have to sew them on. but I think I might want a tension strap on the sides at the main hoop. So I need to figure out where....and between witch layers it need to be. That means going back out to the jeep, That is currently in a dark, non-heated lean-too....looks like tomorrow. 20201222_185710.jpg
 

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
Gold Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
OK, a couple more updates. I'm going to do it in a couple post to keep it sorted out a bit. :rolleyes:


The Dump trailer is done (except for paint) and works great. :bacon:


If you're wondering how to draw lines and marks on stuff you care about..........use disappearing marker............Works AWESOME. :twocents:20201223_112937.jpg20201224_130715.jpg
 

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
Gold Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
After many marks, measuring, and fighting with the sewing machine, the side flaps are on.

And I trimmed the back, then put on the edging and nylon tie downs. all that is left is the buckles for the tie downs. :cool:

20201224_130727.jpg20201224_134333.jpg20201224_150153.jpg20201224_150225.jpg
 

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
Gold Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
Next I started the short side panels. I cut out the drivers side. Finished the top and bottom so I could stretch it in place. Used some blue tape to determine the roll bar tie points. And started to ponder what shape window would look good? :popcorn:20201224_153520.jpg20201224_153542.jpg20201224_153554.jpg
 

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
Gold Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
After eating way too much at the in-laws today. I decided to relax and figure out how to do the small windows in the side panels. The marine windows usually use bias tape on the inside and fold the outside for a finished edge......It works fine if you have room for a large radius. Not so much on tight corners. I did have good success on square corners, But i don't like the look as much. Sooo it looks like I'm going to go with no trim and two sewn seams. I also put the door frames flaps and Velcro on the sides. Since I had my Bestop Velcro come loose a couple times I went with name brand, 2 inch, industrial duty Velcro on all spots. I think it was overkill.......They're kinda tough to get back off once stuck together :shrug:20201225_192529.jpg20201225_192537.jpg20201225_192924.jpg
 

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
Gold Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
I machined the new upper doorframes to match the bestop frames and mounted them to the rool cage. 20201226_145228.jpg20201226_145246.jpg


Then I test fit the half door and soft upper.

20201226_145130.jpg


And this is how I'll run it most of the time. Half doors., Safari style top, and NO FRAME on the sides.8-)

20201226_145217.jpg
 

designerRob

CJ-8 Member
Silver Member
Member
City
Allen Park
State
MI
That turned out really nice. ? Did you get the clear plastic window material from sailrite?
 

jbeemer

CJ-8 Member
Gold Member
City
Conklin
State
MI
Did a couple more little details. The passenger side vertical door frame is done. I bent it up out of 3/8" tubing, then flattened the top. With the flat top I machined a .090" slot in the upper frame, which keeps the door frame from twisting. Also makes removal easy. Just remove the 1/4 turn screw by the windshield, lift the upper bar, and it's out.

20201227_144606.jpg

Next I put in the windjammer to figure out the bottom tie/retainer/hold-down. That's when I remembered I need to do something for the rear seat harnesses if I want to run the windjammer with the rear seat.

20201228_173825.jpg
 
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