YJ Doors on a TJ
Can two piece soft doors for a YJ fit on a TJ? It was a question many TJ owners had pondered. Especially those of us who had purchased a TJ with full steel doors. I was no exception. Removing the doors was always such a commitment! Is it going to rain? Is it going to get cold tonight? What if there is a Locust swarm? I needed some way to be prepared. The answer was easy. A set of two piece of soft doors. That way I could just pull them off any time I felt the urge and toss 'em in the back!
All I had to do was be patient until the soft top Gods waved their mighty staffs and spoke the words, "Let there be two piece soft doors…" Well, we all soon found out that out government was not going to allow that to happen. Ever tightening side impact laws meant that there would be no soft doors manufactured for the TJ. At least that's what the soft top companies were telling us. Why ChryCo could still manufacture a vehicle with removable doors, but another company couldn't make some different, light weight doors to hang in the gaping holes is beyond me. Either way, two years after buying my beloved TJ, and still, no soft doors.The idea of using YJ doors came up several times on the mailing lists, and it seemed as if they might work. Similar door openings, similar hinge positions, and we soon all figured out that the inside of the windshield frame was the same as well. Although the angle of the windshield had been increased on the TJ, it was done by making the bottom of the windshield thicker.
So I finally decided to give it a shot. I ordered a pair of Bestop black denim, two piece soft doors for a YJ with a hard top from 4 wheel parts wholesalers. It is important to order doors for a hard top equipped YJ, because the design of the factory soft top doors is different, and won't come close to fitting.The doors arrived 3 days later and I immediately went to work and here's what I found.Not too shabby! You can see the lower portion of the door is right on the money. The hinges are correct, and the lines are correct. The only problem… The latches don't line up. The TJ door catch is too low. But I noticed that the upper torx bolt that holds the catch to the door frame was just about the right height. So ran to the hardware store a picked up two 5/16" x 2" bolts, some nuts of the correct size and some washers. It ain't pretty, but it does the job. You can see, I marked the location of the catch before I removed it. That will just make it quicker to remount when I put the steel doors back on. Down the road, I may have the material removed from the doors, have the latch mounting plate relocated, and have the doors recovered so that I can use the regular latch, but for now this will do. It 's not hard to switch them around anyway. One other thing I will do is get a small piece of plastic tubing to go over the exposed threads of the bolt for a slightly better fit.
The upper halves are a little more off. Everyone was correct believing that the leading edge of the door was the same angle. It's right on the money. The rear edge of the door is a bit different though. Pretty close, but not quite the same. But, I'd say they are close enough. Good enough to get us back to camp dry and warm if needed. Since this picture was taken, I have done some more tweaking here and there and have gotten them to fit a bit better. You can see here how the rear edge of the door isn't quite the same as the frame. It actually overlaps slightly, and the curve at the lower corner of the upper 1/2 is different. But this actually makes for a very tight fit and keeps the door from rattling on the catch
So there you go. In this Jeeper's opinion, you can stick YJ 2 piece soft doors on a TJ.
4 Wheel Drive Hardware part #51783
Color codes: 15 = Black denim
09 = Light grey
37 = Spice