NAS D90 Soft Top Replacement - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old August 26th, 2015, 09:53 AM
neilraymondjr
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Jed Raymond
1994 NAS D90
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NAS D90 Soft Top Replacement

My '94 D90 needs a new soft top. What's the consensus on the highest quality/best value? Exmoor? Badger? I know I'll need a belt rail and rear door kit, just looking to get a sense of everyone's experience with the options out there.
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  #2  
Old August 26th, 2015, 10:04 AM
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barry f
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Lots of threads on the subject but I will say if I had your truck and it's in good condition I would only get a new tickford top. I would not add a beltrail.
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  #3  
Old August 26th, 2015, 10:04 AM
jperakis
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James Perakis
94 ST
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Badgers have the best reputation (and rightfully so).

The RN top is a nice option as well.

I'd say it all depends on your budget. If you can shell out several K, get the Badger and gutter kit and enjoy your truck in the winter months more than you ever have in the past.

If you are not inclined to drop Gs there are several good condition used tops in the for sale section

good luck.

------ Follow up post added August 26th, 2015 07:05 AM ------

good point by Barry, if your truck is mint, then keep it original.

That being said I hated the Trickford top on my first Defender.
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  #4  
Old August 26th, 2015, 10:16 AM
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barry f
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I second badger is the best. I have one on my truck with a gutter kit but if I could have anything I would trade my truck in a second for one with a tickford.
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  #5  
Old August 26th, 2015, 11:19 AM
neilraymondjr
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Jed Raymond
1994 NAS D90
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Is the thought that the Tickford is an OEM replacement enhancing the collector's value of the truck, or does it actually outperform the Badger with the gutter system?
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  #6  
Old August 26th, 2015, 11:36 AM
jperakis
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James Perakis
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Because its an OEM replacement.

From a performance perspective the Badger Gutter Kit alone is a huge upgrade compared to anything else available... not to mention their build quality and materials are superior to OEM and aftermarket replacements.

I guess it's also worth noting that your timeline is an important variable here as well. BCW has a decent lead time whereas most other tops can be had in a matter of days.
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  #7  
Old August 26th, 2015, 10:26 PM
CDeWan
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Clay DeWan
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Tickford

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Originally Posted by bjf View Post
I second badger is the best. I have one on my truck with a gutter kit but if I could have anything I would trade my truck in a second for one with a tickford.
I am with Barry on this one. Having owned a tickford, best top and roversnorth I would get a tickford. There are 2 style of tickford. 1 where you can roll back the cab part and snap it with straps back to itself and a later version which does not have this option. I am still keeping my tickford alive through multiple repairs including replacing the windows. The badger truck cab set up is also a good one if your are not running the truck all the time in winter
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  #8  
Old August 26th, 2015, 11:36 PM
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Keith Rider
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Keep the snaps and go tickford. Still have one on truck. A little shrunk but still fuctions. If had to buy new would have local shop make me another Tickford style top.
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  #9  
Old August 27th, 2015, 11:22 AM
neilraymondjr
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Jed Raymond
1994 NAS D90
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If I'm solely concerned with performance, sounds like the BCW with the gutter system is the best option. Worth noting that I live/work on a cattle form north of Boston for which this is a working truck, and the Farmer's almanac claims this winter will be worse than the last....

Should I change my MO and get into the restoration game, the Tickford would be the best option. I can see the latter happening 5-10 years down the road.

Please let me know if I'm missing something. You guys have been fantastic, thanks for the feedback.
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  #10  
Old August 27th, 2015, 09:23 PM
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Robert Ragland
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Funny how consensus opinion changes over the years. Nobody would touch a Tickford in the past, as belt rail was uniformly upheld as the best. I don't mind the Tickford, but snaps just don't hold up well. The replacement variety are incredibly cheap.
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  #11  
Old August 27th, 2015, 10:20 PM
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barry f
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Originality is king as values keep going up for unmolested trucks. The fact is the snaps were unique to 94. It might be shit but it's original. The belt rail is good but drilling holes isn't worth it. I have a badger with gutter kit but I doubt if I dealt with a real winter it performs that much better than a tickford. It's a marginal improvement. Buy a toyota pick up for winter and store the defender and leave it topless. Long term you will be happier.
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Are there shocks that I can addjust up and down like my friends LX460? That would be very cool!
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  #12  
Old August 27th, 2015, 11:16 PM
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Robert Lynch
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Are we really going down the Porsche path... Where originality is king?
Yes the NAS trucks are a little special, but they still make them (the 90/110/130)
Values are going up..but the same trucks with better tech are becoming legal..
I've seen this trend before and you will see a shift, then a correction in the market. And then NAS trucks (original ones) will be special again on the auction circuit.
If you use it.. Go for function, if your storing it, but a bestop, sine that's what came in them..


I have a badger 2 GK on my truck, now going on 7 years it's great...I use my truck.
Ymmv
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  #13  
Old August 28th, 2015, 12:34 AM
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barry f
94 ST #395
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Not going to argue about row vs nas.

94s had tickford tops. It's either a curse or a blessing to have one without a belt rail. Few and far between are still original.

The original poster can make his own decision and adding a badger never takes away from value but as I said I would trade my truck with a badger for a tickford top.

------ Follow up post added August 27th, 2015 09:35 PM ------

And as far as porsche, original is king.
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Are there shocks that I can addjust up and down like my friends LX460? That would be very cool!
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  #14  
Old August 28th, 2015, 06:12 AM
vtlandrover
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Frank
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Jed -

The only thing you might be missing is how important it will be for you to CAREFULLY drill out the existing snaps from the body if you go the route of the belt rail. My 29k mile '94 was completely bone stock original, which is what I was after. Rust-free was actually my criteria and I was pleasantly surprised that not a single hole or tack-on was present. Except it did have the belt rail, which I removed after locating a NOS Tickford only to find that the mechanic or do-it-yourselfer drilled the snaps out with a huge drill bit. Worse, they used pliers or something to pull the stud out, so some of the holes were oval and the aluminum was torn. It took me in the order of hours to replace the snaps after modifying aluminum rivet heads (taking a drill and a file and grinding down so that the heads could fit the snap recesses) and assembling aluminum washers on the inside of the tub. Take a look at the location of the snaps relative to the body capping and imagine the PITA that it would be to try to get a washer to stay on the inside of a rivet in the middle of the capping - all while trying to keep the snap in place. I know!

I posted a request about a year ago looking for a Tickford and while I got some negativity over the request - "I don't follow the logic" kind of statements - overall, the tide has shifted. I just like the look and functionality more than anything, as it looks "right" to me and I don't need to think of a place to store my windows.
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  #15  
Old September 13th, 2015, 12:16 PM
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Ed
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My 94 came with a pretty old (at least 12-15 years) 1/2 badger. A few patches but still in very serviceable and waterproof condition. Recently went to a used but pristine Badger 2. Same excellent quality. Can't imagine there's a better product out there.
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