Have you ever looked at the ends of the bows where they mount to the roll bar inside the Jeep. I know why they used plastic at the mount point. Cheaper, it flexes a little when you put the soft top on, and of course probably costs way to much to replace at the dealership. I noticed that they had a tendency to bending on my other TJ's so I figured I would eventually replace the bow ends on this one. Okay at 150 miles, 2 days after I took it from the dealer, I took a look at the bow. Guess what 2 of them were already bending. Now add in the fact that the soft top just didn't fit right. So these went in a little early. I did discover why the top didn't fit perfectly during installation.
Needle File or Dremel
Phillips Screw driver
|1. I found that if you undo the back of the soft top and just fold it forward works well. This will also give you a good angle to be able to get any tools into the openings to debur the inside.|
|2. Do one set at a time. This makes it easier to maneuver the bows around. Use a phillips screwdiver to remove the retaining screw that holds the plastic bow end into the bow. Now use a T-30 Torx to remove the bow end to roll bar bolt. You may need to pry open the end of the bow end to get it off of the roll bar bracket. Once you get it off, just pull the bow end out of the bow. I tried to remove the bow end from the roll bar and then unscrew the retaining screw, but I found that it was irritatingly difficult.|
|3. As you can see these were already bent. When I pulled one of the plastic ones out I had a pile of metal shavings fall into the seat and on the floor. This seemed rather odd so a quick measurement confirmed that this side was shorter than the other. Here was the reason why my top didn't fit right.|
|4. Now all you need to do is make certain that the end of the bow and the screw hole are deburred. I ran my Dremel up inside of it and make short work of the burrs. You may find that the bow end is crimped down slightly, and will need to smooth this out. Now just insert the new billet bow ends, line up the holes and screw in the retaining screw. You can see how far out one of the new bow end stick. This is on the side that was shorter. Once I got this one in they measured the same length.||
The short side bow.
|5. Before I tried to pin the top back on I checked to see if I could get the new pins through the old holes in the roll bar brackets. My brackets had a heavy coat of pain on them and the new pins would not go on. So I ran the Dremel through the hole and cleaned up the pain. I didn't have to grind out any metal, just get rid of the paint. The pins slid right in.|
|6. Now all you need to do is get the other set done and you are finished. Here is what they look like once you are done.|
This page last updated: 16-Apr-2008
and Design © 2002-present WanderingTrail, Ron Seegert
Common Sense and Safety should always be observed when working on your vehicle or doing modifications. Jackstands, wheel blocks, disconnecting the battery are a few of the basic safety precautions that should be used and may not be mentioned in the write ups on this site. You are responsible for your own installation, these write ups are a helpful guideline and should not be taken as an official installation instruction. My write up may be different from the kits currently out there, so alwasy double check the manufacturers installation instructions when installing anything. I try to keep the site up to date with changes that have occured as I discover them, but may not have the latest unless someone lets me know. If you feel that an install is above your capabilities after reading my write ups, I recommend getting together with a club and getting some help. Only a few times have I needed to employe some actual help from a shop to get something done. Usually welding or A/C work.
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