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Jeep Wrangler - Restoration & Custom Outfitting
All photos, diagrams, and text on this page Copyright 2013 - David Todeschini - all rights reserved - see Copyright Terms

Mesh Bikini Top

 

The purpose of a Bikini Top is to provide shade so you don't get sunburned cruising around in your cool-lookin' Jeep. The problem with conventional Bikini covers is that they can flop around in a strong cross-wind, and make a lot of noise at highway speed. They also don't let the sun through, which means that you might just as well have the top up with the rear and rear-side windows removed. The solution is a "vented" full-length Bikini Mesh Top that covers the entire passenger compartment all the way back to the cargo area (why should the dog suffer in direct sunlight?). When you're parked and want complete shade, you can take a Accordion-Style Sun Shade , and if you have the Overhead Console installed, you can slide the shade (shiny side up) between the Gear Console bracket and the mesh top.

 

Any Bikini Top requires a "header" which is a 4-foot long piece of extruded plastic (or metal in this case), that holds the windward side of the Bikini Top. This particular Bikini Top is the nicest I've seen; and believe me, in the New Jersey Pine Barrens, there are probably more Jeeps per capita than anyplace else in the country so I've seen my share of Jeeps.

 

If you have a Soft Top installed, you can leave the Bikini Top installed; but you must remove the header when you want to put the Soft Top back up; you simply tuck the front end of the Bikini Top up into the (side) Roll Bar. Keeping a Bikini Top in place with the top up is much easier if you have an Overhead Console installed, because the console bracket keeps the loose Bikini Top fabric from falling into the passenger compartment. If you have the Overhead Console installed, you can also construct a Radio Crossbar which will not only provide a place to mount your electronics, but will serve to hold a Bikini Top in place with the Soft Top up.

 

Stow your folding window shade up above the Overhead Console Bracket, and it will keep the loose Bikini Top fabric out of your way. If you have a mesh top such as this one, and the Soft Top down, you can unfold the shade and the Radio Crossbar will hold it unfolded and in place to provide shade.

 

Photo at the left shows the Vented (mesh) Bikini Top installed, but not stretched into the header bar, because the header bar is not installed. In this photo, you see the Overhead Console bracket (red arrow) which extends from the center of windshield frame to Roll Bar, holding the Bikini fabric from falling completely into the passenger compartment.  Notice that when not attached to the roll bar or door frame, the Bikini fabric is partially falling into the passenger compartment (blue arrows).

Mesh Bikini Top with Overhead Gear Console and DIY Radio Crossbar.

The Overhead Console (orange arrows) is visible through the mesh fabric in this photo. The crossbar is primarily used to hold the Reflective Cargo Netting, slightly stretches the Bikini fabric, and provides a place to mount electronic equipment.

The Racing Seat in the passenger's spot is visible (red arrow), as is my face reflected in the windshield (yellow arrow).

 

This photo taken from the passenger side of the Jeep, shows the Mesh Top and the Camouflage  Overhead Console.

Jeep Mesh Bikini Top installed with Smittybilt Overhead Gear Console.

View through the Mesh Bikini Top from the driver's seat looking over right shoulder. Blue arrow is the Smittybilt Overhead Console. The red arrow is the Radio Crossbar holding the Reflective Cargo Net, which holds the Jeep's Log book (green arrow). The Cargo net is below the Bikini Top.

The Mesh Bikini tucks into the door frame rails as shown here, or if you have the frame removed, the Bikini Top will fasten to the Roll Bar with the attached Velcro closure. Yellow arrow shows the Locking Console, and the red arrow is a hand loop I fashioned out of leftover reflective webbing used to construct a Reflective Cargo Net.

Rear view of the Jeep with the Mesh Bikini Top. The Reflective Cargo Net is totally DIY; there is nothing like this anywhere, which makes this Jeep unique (unless, of course, you follow the directions on this Web site and make one for yourself).

When you have an  Overhead Console, a Radio Crossbar, and Reflective Cargo Net installed, you don't have to remove the Bikini Top when you put the Soft Top back up. You simply remove the header bar, and roll up the mesh fabric so that it is held in place between the net and the Soft Top.

 

In addition, whether or not the Soft Top is up or down, you can store your Windshield Sun Shade between the Cargo Net and the Mesh Bikini Top, or between the Cargo Net and the Soft Top.

 

Between the Cargo Net and Mesh Bikini Top, the Windshield Sun Shade  provides full shade (with the Soft Top down), heat reflection in summer, and a bit of insulation in the cold months. The Sun Shade can be removed or installed in mere minutes.

 

(see additional photos in the Cargo Net article)

 

 
Click here to get your full-length Mesh Bikini Top

Click here to download installation instructions (PDF)

Bestop 52528-35 Header-style Bikini Black Diamond Top for 03-06 Wrangler including Unlimited

Bestop 52581-11 Safari Header Bikini Top MESH For 2007-09 Jeep Wrangler JK Unlimited 4 Door

Bestop 52531-15 Header-style Safari Bikini Black Denim Top for 97-02 Wrangler

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