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
, 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
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
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
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.
Racing Seat in the passenger's
spot is visible (red
as is my face reflected in the windshield (yellow arrow).
taken from the passenger side of the Jeep, shows the Mesh Top and
the Camouflage Overhead Console.
the Mesh Bikini Top from the driver's seat looking over right
is the Smittybilt Overhead Console.
is the Radio Crossbar holding the
Reflective Cargo Net,
which holds the Jeep's Log book (green
The Cargo net is below the Bikini Top.
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.
shows the Locking Console, and the
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.
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.
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.
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