HMMWV 4-man Soft Slant Back Feedback and Discussion

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Bulldogger

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While my Prime account is in processing so I can post to the classifieds, I’ll open this new thread to allow for new thoughts and conversation to go beyond my original thread for development of this concept.
https://www.steelsoldiers.com/showt...man-Soft-Top-Slant-Back&p=2108802#post2108802

I invite feedback from buyers, other ideas, and questions about the production model and what improvements might be considered in future variants.

The basics: since there is no military version of a canvas slant back, I decided to make one. My prototype looked good enough that a few people asked to buy one and now I’m starting to make them for continued sale. I am posting them as they are built, but might take advanced orders for special fabric, etc.

The basic model has a frame made from 1/2” EMT steel electrical conduit and uses as many standard fittings as possible. The fit the geometry of the HMMWV bed I do have to make 6 custom welds.
The covering is made from 1000D nylon treated w a water resistant coating. It is held on to the frame using Velcro straps, to the bed using D ring webbing tie downs fit to the stock mounts, and is held to the soft top using the stock Velcro channel which runs along the rear of the top and sides.
The window is clear marine vinyl and unzips up the sides so it can be rolled up and secured with two D ring straps.

My kit includes the frame, fittings and the soft back itself.

NOT INCLUDED is about 4 packages of 1/2”ID pipe insulation foam. This foam pads between the the top and frame. To include this inexpensive but bulky material raises the shipping cost noticeably!

What does it cost? The current model is priced at $375 plus actual shipping, which from FedEx runs between $35-60 depending on how far you are from Northern Virginia. Yes, I don’t mind sending through SSRelay or taking to the occasional rally, if I’m going to one. I can also ship other means, but I have a discount w FedEx. If you use SSRelay, meaning I meet another member headed your way, who passes it to another member, etc, it follows I cannot be responsible for shipping problems. It’s cheap, but you get what you pay for.

I can make it in any normal color of nylon tent canvas, but fancy materials like Sunbrella or other exotics will cost extra. The current design uses 3.5 yards of material, which for Sunbrella would be about $150 for material alone.

Today on hand I have material to make forest green (pictured) and desert tan. I can get black and coyote brown readily, as well as ADU digital camo and most solid colors.

I invite questions and suggestions. And buyers please post your feedback and pictures here too.

Many thanks!
Bulldogger
 

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Bulldogger

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I might could extend the sides enough to fit over the footmen. It’s not a bad idea. I’ve not seen a mil cover in person or might have tried to do that from the start. Biggest concern is how to secure that setup, as Ancra buckles are very expensive considering one needs 11 of them. I’ve not found them less than $2.50 each in bulk.

Ill think on it.

Bulldogger
 

nattieleather

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Have you found a way to not use black or galvanized pipe connectors on the frame? On the prototype there are elbow and tees and I was just wondering if you found a different way to give a smoother look to the bow's?
 

Bulldogger

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Have you found a way to not use black or galvanized pipe connectors on the frame? On the prototype there are elbow and tees and I was just wondering if you found a different way to give a smoother look to the bow's?

Nattie, the Fittings are smoothed out because of the foam that is put over the tubes. The foam is as thick as the fittings.
Bulldogger
 

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Bulldogger

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I have tan fabric in stock DCIV, and will be making one soon. I plan to use up fabric on hand (green, tan) to sell to buy more fabric in bulk. Let me know when you're ready. Shipping to TN should be about $45.
Bulldogger
 

tomelroy

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i think the frame with the foam looks great, even without the cover. You should make a deluxe version that is all welded larger diameter steel or aluminum tube (the same diameter as the foam) Maybe with the angle material that meets the tops of the fenders. Like you see on some hmmwv roll cages. Then you could run it with and without the cover. Although shipping would be a problem..maybe a version that is DIY weld.
 

Bulldogger

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A few people have expressed interest in something like that. I'm not sure I would ever get to that because it exceeds my capabilities and the equipment I have in my shop. I'll see if this current version gets popular enough to warrant further investment, though I think it's unlikely I would tool up for bending tubing and things like that.
Bulldogger
 

Action

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A few people have expressed interest in something like that. I'm not sure I would ever get to that because it exceeds my capabilities and the equipment I have in my shop. I'll see if this current version gets popular enough to warrant further investment, though I think it's unlikely I would tool up for bending tubing and things like that.
Bulldogger
Also liability if you get blamed for faulty "roll bar" after accident.
 

Bulldogger

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Also liability if you get blamed for faulty "roll bar" after accident.
That is also on my mind. As noted, I doubt I'd ever get that far. I am nowhere close to having the kind of sales that might get me interested in making another product. But I daydream of it.
Bulldogger
 

Bulldogger

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Mk1 Mod1 finished

Following the suggestion to have the sides slip over the footman fittings, I went into my CAD program and designed a fitting to glue to the canvas and protect the slot a bit. Seems to work well enough. I decided to make it a modification and printed enough for my two Mk1 soft slant backs.
They are now for sale in the classifieds. I hope spring brings a few sales. Time will tell.
Bulldogger
 

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Bulldogger

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Some facts for the curious about the slant backs:
They are held to the soft top and frame by velcro
They shrink a bit once wetted a few times so they are made a touch baggy to compensate.
Each top uses 3.5 yards of 1000 Dernier nylon, 70 yards of thread, about 15 feet of webbing, about 20’ of velcro (hook and loop paired), one yard of 40ga clear vinyl, 50’ of steel conduit, and 26 D rings. All seams are double stitched and the bottom edges are rollover stitched.
It takes me about 16-18 hours all told to make a frame and sew a soft back.

I hope this helps convince folks there has been some thought and investment in these.

Bulldogger
 

Bulldogger

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Here is a tan version (the same one pictured above on my own green HMMWV for test fit above) mounted on a local member's ride for fitting. He's now petitioning CINCHOUSE for permission to buy...
BDGR
IMG_0906.jpg
 
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