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Bestop Trektop NX issue on 2012 JKU

 
Old 03-27-2012, 08:04 AM
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Default Bestop Trektop NX issue on 2012 JKU

Hi Everyone!
Thanks in advance for reading.

Well it’s been unusually warm in the northern states this winter/spring so I have had the itch to ditch the hardtop and purchase a nice soft top for the summer. I recently bought the Bestop Trektop NX (I really like the fast back look on the JKU’s) and decided to install it. I did my fair share of research on the top before buying and came across a wide variety of opinions regarding the ease of installation. Everyone who owns one seems to only have good things to say about their Trektop NX! Needless to say I was excited to get the hardtop off and the Trektop NX on! I had come across some threads where people were having difficulties installing the Trektop NX because of how tight the material was. Most of these issues seemed to be related to cold external temperatures during the initial install. Because temps had been between 60-80ºF in Minnesota, and Bestop recommends installation in temperatures above 72ºF I placed the fabric portions of the Trektop NX in my sauna and set it to 90ºF and let the top soak in the heat overnight prior to install.

The next day was overcast and about 70ºF at the time of installation. I figured this would be warm enough and couldn’t wait to get the top on. The first couple steps went really smoothly. The installation guide was pretty good, and I was able to follow the pictures and text for the most part. (Some instructions could have been a little better worded and pictures improved, but I am an engineer by profession so that is me nit picking… I have come across much worse!)

I encountered my first problem during install step # 17 & 20. The rear side window panels were hard to insert into the door surrounds. They would go in, but not want to stay in towards the top, took a couple of tries, but nothing too hard to figure out. Once I got it, I shut the rear doors to lock in into the groove. In step #20 the zippers were really hard to fully close; requiring substantial pulling force… not a big deal, but this worried me somewhat about the rest of the top.

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The next step I had trouble with was the #23. The step requires you to attach the tailgate bar to the rear tabs of the vehicle. Initially it appears that something was seriously wrong as there was a good 2 inches between the tailgate bar attachment clamps and the sheet metal tabs built into the body panel of the jeep. At this point, after some thought, I decided that I should loosen the rear bow brackets which dictate the position of the rear window and top of the assembly. These brackets have some play front to back and if I positioned them too far forward, it may be causing the problems attaching the tailgate bar. (These brackets can be seen in install step # 2 and #13). By loosening the brackets I was able to eventually get the passenger side of the tailgate bar attached and with the help of a friend I was able to get the driver side attached… but something seemed wrong. Should it have required the strength of two to get this attached to the rear sheet metal attachment tab??? The zippers of the rear window were eassly closed and life was good! Almost don’t with my install!


Or so I thought…

Step #27 would prove to give me even more trouble! When the top of the cover was flipped over to complete the installation, I noticed there was a noticeable gap between the front window seal and the front of the trektop nx top header. I tried to reach the factory attachment bars on the front window assembly with the hook levers attached to the header of the trektop nx and was no ware close… we tried everything we could and the hooks were still too far away from the latches… finally we thought we should loosen the brackets in step #2 a second time to try and get the top a bit closer to the front in order to engage the lever hooks into the attachment bars on the front window.


This finally worked and I was able to clamped the top down to the front window!
At this point I turned the heat on full blast and let the jeep sit for 45 minutes with the heat cranked to allow the soft top to “break in” or loosen up a bit.

The next day after work I was walking up to the jeep and I noticed the rear tailgate bar looked strange on the driver side…
Upon a closer look I realized that the tailgate bar had actually bent the sheet metal tab upwards as seen in the pictures below.

Click image for larger version

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I called Bestop and they said they have never heard of this problem before with their Trektop NX’s and usually have the opposite problem, where the top is too loose and people call to figure out how to make it tighter!
The Customer service people were really helpful and kind. They asked me to send in pictures of what had happened. I sent the pictures yesterday. I will update you all on their response to this damage.

I have also taken the jeep to the dealership to see what they had to say about it. They think this may be covered under warranty somehow… well see, I find it hard to believe Chrysler would cover damage caused by an aftermarket product… but I will update you on that front as well!


Have any of you have similar problems or similar experiences? I really like the look of the top and hope I can find a solution to this problem.

Thanks for reading and as always Happy Jeeping!
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Old 03-27-2012, 06:22 PM
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Originally Posted by suds1485
bump to top. i have this top sitting in my living room waiting to install and would like to k now the answers to the dilemma as well
This is the first time I've heard about the nx bending anything, I installed mine this past weekend it was a little too cold but all in all an easy install I just had to loosen the windshield brackets so the clips would reach in the front
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Old 03-28-2012, 09:40 AM
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Default Zipper on rear windows

Originally Posted by Atch View Post
This is the first time I've heard about the nx bending anything, I installed mine this past weekend it was a little too cold but all in all an easy install I just had to loosen the windshield brackets so the clips would reach in the front
Did you have any issues with the zippers for the rear window? The passenger side quarter window zips to the rear window fine. However, the driver side quarter window and rear window do not line up. It's not because it is too tight because even when the quarter window and rear window are off the jeep, the zippers don't line up. It's almost like the zipper pull was installed backwards at the factory.

It's hard to explain so here is a quick video to show what is going on. Please understand the video is only to show the zipper problem and I understand I am not installing the windows completely or in the correct order. Is there something obvious that I am overlooking here?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=586edw7L4bI
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:00 AM
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The only issues I had with the zippers was just how tight they all were but with the sun and being on my jeep they should stretch and be easier to use. With yours if they don't even zip together while laying on the ground I'm guessing the zipper on the quarter panel is upside dwn
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:04 AM
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It is supposed to start from the top and it does look like the zipper on the driver side is "upside down"!
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:05 AM
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Had the same problem then the tailgate bar actually broke .. One tab is currently missing on the tailgate bar not good but contacted quadratec they sent a new one out no charge. The missing tab however helped losen up the tension no more bend. Took a rubber mallet to the upward bend not what i wanted but it worked. Going to wait for a triple digit temp before reinstalling tailgate bar.
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:08 AM
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I installed mine last weekend and love it. Weather is pretty good here in san diego though, but it still took me two hours for install and I had same issues you are talking about, rear door channel kept slipping out, front latches wouldn't reach, couldn't attach rear bar. I actually tore one of the fabric loops off inter the quarter glass. My solution was to install as much as I could and left in the sun for a few hours. Got the front latched after that. I left the rear bar attached to the window but not the body for two days and after that was able to snap on myself. Those channels should be able to be bent back down with a rubber mallet, have you tried anything like that?
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Old 04-09-2012, 03:39 PM
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Originally Posted by CRV_05 View Post
Hi Everyone!
Thanks in advance for reading.

Well it’s been unusually warm in the northern states this winter/spring so I have had the itch to ditch the hardtop and purchase a nice soft top for the summer. I recently bought the Bestop Trektop NX (I really like the fast back look on the JKU’s) and decided to install it. I did my fair share of research on the top before buying and came across a wide variety of opinions regarding the ease of installation. Everyone who owns one seems to only have good things to say about their Trektop NX! Needless to say I was excited to get the hardtop off and the Trektop NX on! I had come across some threads where people were having difficulties installing the Trektop NX because of how tight the material was. Most of these issues seemed to be related to cold external temperatures during the initial install. Because temps had been between 60-80ºF in Minnesota, and Bestop recommends installation in temperatures above 72ºF I placed the fabric portions of the Trektop NX in my sauna and set it to 90ºF and let the top soak in the heat overnight prior to install.

The next day was overcast and about 70ºF at the time of installation. I figured this would be warm enough and couldn’t wait to get the top on. The first couple steps went really smoothly. The installation guide was pretty good, and I was able to follow the pictures and text for the most part. (Some instructions could have been a little better worded and pictures improved, but I am an engineer by profession so that is me nit picking… I have come across much worse!)

I encountered my first problem during install step # 17 & 20. The rear side window panels were hard to insert into the door surrounds. They would go in, but not want to stay in towards the top, took a couple of tries, but nothing too hard to figure out. Once I got it, I shut the rear doors to lock in into the groove. In step #20 the zippers were really hard to fully close; requiring substantial pulling force… not a big deal, but this worried me somewhat about the rest of the top.

Attachment 296105
Attachment 296106
Attachment 296110

The next step I had trouble with was the #23. The step requires you to attach the tailgate bar to the rear tabs of the vehicle. Initially it appears that something was seriously wrong as there was a good 2 inches between the tailgate bar attachment clamps and the sheet metal tabs built into the body panel of the jeep. At this point, after some thought, I decided that I should loosen the rear bow brackets which dictate the position of the rear window and top of the assembly. These brackets have some play front to back and if I positioned them too far forward, it may be causing the problems attaching the tailgate bar. (These brackets can be seen in install step # 2 and #13). By loosening the brackets I was able to eventually get the passenger side of the tailgate bar attached and with the help of a friend I was able to get the driver side attached… but something seemed wrong. Should it have required the strength of two to get this attached to the rear sheet metal attachment tab??? The zippers of the rear window were eassly closed and life was good! Almost don’t with my install!


Or so I thought…

Step #27 would prove to give me even more trouble! When the top of the cover was flipped over to complete the installation, I noticed there was a noticeable gap between the front window seal and the front of the trektop nx top header. I tried to reach the factory attachment bars on the front window assembly with the hook levers attached to the header of the trektop nx and was no ware close… we tried everything we could and the hooks were still too far away from the latches… finally we thought we should loosen the brackets in step #2 a second time to try and get the top a bit closer to the front in order to engage the lever hooks into the attachment bars on the front window.


This finally worked and I was able to clamped the top down to the front window!
At this point I turned the heat on full blast and let the jeep sit for 45 minutes with the heat cranked to allow the soft top to “break in” or loosen up a bit.

The next day after work I was walking up to the jeep and I noticed the rear tailgate bar looked strange on the driver side…
Upon a closer look I realized that the tailgate bar had actually bent the sheet metal tab upwards as seen in the pictures below.

Attachment 296109

Attachment 296111


I called Bestop and they said they have never heard of this problem before with their Trektop NX’s and usually have the opposite problem, where the top is too loose and people call to figure out how to make it tighter!
The Customer service people were really helpful and kind. They asked me to send in pictures of what had happened. I sent the pictures yesterday. I will update you all on their response to this damage.

I have also taken the jeep to the dealership to see what they had to say about it. They think this may be covered under warranty somehow… well see, I find it hard to believe Chrysler would cover damage caused by an aftermarket product… but I will update you on that front as well!


Have any of you have similar problems or similar experiences? I really like the look of the top and hope I can find a solution to this problem.

Thanks for reading and as always Happy Jeeping!


Hey neighbor, great post. Any updates? I've been eyeing this top as well and agree that temps up here have been nice to us this winter. How does it look on your JK?
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Old 04-16-2012, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by mjdwranglerjkunlim08 View Post
...Going to wait for a triple digit temp before reinstalling tailgate bar.
Now that's funny...hope you're kidding cause my Trektop NX is on backorder now and I'm not going to see any triple digit temps unless I take a 20+ hour drive to FL!!
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Old 04-16-2012, 03:16 PM
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Originally Posted by snags922

Now that's funny...hope you're kidding cause my Trektop NX is on backorder now and I'm not going to see any triple digit temps unless I take a 20+ hour drive to FL!!
Triple digit was slightly sarcastic but definitely warm i made the mistake of jumping right into it. Some peoples success with install varies either way love the look and the tight seals are all worth it in the end. Its a sharp soft top.
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