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RIP Chris
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148 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm shopping for a tonneau cover for my pickup to secure things in the bed. I've ruled out roll up covers and am not enticed by the fold up kind. I like the retractable style. I don't care about losing a little bit of bed space.

In shopping around, the number of brands are overwhelming. Pace Edwards, Roll n lock, Gator, Retrax, and on and on. Some are spring retractable, some are not. Some have vinyl over aluminum decks, some have just aluminum, etc.

Ideally, I'd like something that installs with no drilling into the truck bed unless there's a real good reason for it. Pace Edwards offers a removable one called the Switchblade, but it appears to be lightly made, having only a one year warranty compared to most others having 3 or 4. I do like that it can be removed when not needed or would be in the way.

My truck has a locking tailgate (new F-150) so I don't need a separate key lock for the cover. One that unlocks from inside seems like it would be fine.

I don't need electric motors or any other fancy bells and whistles, just sold construction and intelligent design. So please, only opinions on good quality products, no dingbat homemade plywood lids or cheap crap from companies like Titan or Harbor Freight. :usa

Thanks
 

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Bonehead Club Lackey
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When you find one post it here. I haven't found one either. I'd like one that seals good and will be out of the way when I want to use all of the bed space. My pickup gets used as a pickup. Caps don't work for me either.
 

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I have a retrax on my company owned 2015 F150. The one that I have is powered, although, do it over, I would get the manual open! That said, this is a real quality retractable tonneau cover but definitely not cheap!!! Concerning usable space at the front. The cover canister does take some space in the front of the bed, although, you can fit something that is about 8" high under it.

https://www.retrax.com/i-24724373-2015-2018-ford-f-150-retrax-powertraxpro-mx-tonneau-cover-6-5-bed.html#!year=2015||make=FORD||model=F-150

Maual open version. This is what I would get if I bought another one.
https://www.retrax.com/i-26435436-2015-2018-ford-f-150-retraxpro-mx-tonneau-cover-6-5-bed.html#!year=2015||make=FORD||model=F-150
 

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RIP Chris
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148 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
When you find one post it here. I haven't found one either. I'd like one that seals good and will be out of the way when I want to use all of the bed space. My pickup gets used as a pickup. Caps don't work for me either.
Hi Levi,

I surely will. But as with anything, your needs will probably differ from mine. Going from an F-450 down to an F-150, I don't use my truck for work anymore. Heck, I've only put about 5K miles on this thing in 6 months. It sits for days (like its owner :laugh:).

I saw that nice Retrax model that Ray_PA mentioned, and I'd probably pull the trigger on that one if I needed something heavy duty. I just need something to keep the dindu's sticky fingers away from my stuff when traveling, and have it last a while here in brutal New England.

On a side note, I'm also curious to know if these covers really increase fuel mileage by 10%, or is that marketing hokum.
 

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Premium Member
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Hi Levi,

I surely will. But as with anything, your needs will probably differ from mine. Going from an F-450 down to an F-150, I don't use my truck for work anymore. Heck, I've only put about 5K miles on this thing in 6 months. It sits for days (like its owner :laugh:).

I saw that nice Retrax model that Ray_PA mentioned, and I'd probably pull the trigger on that one if I needed something heavy duty. I just need something to keep the dindu's sticky fingers away from my stuff when traveling, and have it last a while here in brutal New England.

On a side note, I'm also curious to know if these covers really increase fuel mileage by 10%, or is that marketing hokum.
I tend to believe in 2017, if this was true, truck manufacturers would be putting them on the trucks OEM, since fuel mileage is such a big deal, especially with the F150 sized trucks. Or at least they would advertise the additional fuel mileage. :dunno:
 

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My fuel mileage did not increase. I have a Lund roll up. The plastic end caps keep coming loose.
 

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RIP Chris
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148 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I tend to believe in 2017, if this was true, truck manufacturers would be putting them on the trucks OEM, since fuel mileage is such a big deal, especially with the F150 sized trucks. Or at least they would advertise the additional fuel mileage. :dunno:
Astute observation, as usual.

I keep remembering a great episode of Mythbusters where they tested pickup fuel mileage between tailgate up and tailgate down. Mileage was better with the tailgate up due to the formation of a bubble behind the cab which gets spoiled when the tailgate is down. This old memory made me suspicious of the claims.
 

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Astute observation, as usual.

I keep remembering a great episode of Mythbusters where they tested pickup fuel mileage between tailgate up and tailgate down. Mileage was better with the tailgate up due to the formation of a bubble behind the cab which gets spoiled when the tailgate is down. This old memory made me suspicious of the claims.
I remember that episode also. Many times these ideas are just gimmicks or our imagination thinking something is correct, kind of like fuel mileage.

Sent from my SM-N910V using Tapatalk
 

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There aren't as many "brands" as you think there are.

https://truck-hero.com/

Extang always made a decent roll-up cover. Bak folding covers are pure garbage and are basically the same as any of the other brands owned by THI. The roll-up covers are ok from a few companies, but they were never my thing so I can't comment. I do know that they can be problematic if you get snow where you live because the mechanism can freeze. My brother had one that was "ok", but his issue was that it froze on him with enough regularity in the winter to be frustrating.
 

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RIP Chris
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148 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
There aren't as many "brands" as you think there are.

https://truck-hero.com/

Extang always made a decent roll-up cover. Bak folding covers are pure garbage and are basically the same as any of the other brands owned by THI. The roll-up covers are ok from a few companies, but they were never my thing so I can't comment. I do know that they can be problematic if you get snow where you live because the mechanism can freeze. My brother had one that was "ok", but his issue was that it froze on him with enough regularity in the winter to be frustrating.
Mr. B!

Good points, as always. So, some of these brands are duplicative? Interesting.

If fuel mileage isn't improved with the bed covered, maybe even reduced, and winter snow can cause problems with movement, then I guess the solution would be to keep the top retracted when not needed and only pull it out when there is something to protect in the bed. That didn't occur to me till now.

You guys are great.
 

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Mr. B!

Good points, as always. So, some of these brands are duplicative? Interesting.

If fuel mileage isn't improved with the bed covered, maybe even reduced, and winter snow can cause problems with movement, then I guess the solution would be to keep the top retracted when not needed and only pull it out when there is something to protect in the bed. That didn't occur to me till now.

You guys are great.
THI has been buying up all of the various companies out there that make truck accessories, and it is my STRONG belief that they are sharing R&D now to cut costs. The panels on the various folding covers are made in the same shape, of the same material, and have the SAME gripes when it comes to fit (the folding covers are actually too short for the 6.5' bed GM's of the current generation, but they won't admit this... I made them take a cover back and refund my money because of the design issues).

You could do what you suggest, but you have to also consider that it can still freeze even if it's rolled up. What then?

My brother's solution was to leave the truck in the garage for a couple of days so that it could melt and drip out, then run the cover in and out a few times, then back into the wild and you were ok until it snowed again.

My folding covers have always frozen to the top of the tailgate after storms once it melts a little. The roll-up covers would sag down and stretch from heavy snow. The hard fiberglass covers limit what you can put in the bed. They all have shortcomings.

I'll see if I can find the thread link for a very long discussion about covers for GM trucks that I participated in and I'll PM it to you. It isn't going to be perfect because you're in a different brand of truck, but you'll get a sense of what folks like and don't like for various designs.
 

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I know it isn't retractable but this conversation has drifted so this may fit in...

I've had great luck with Access roll-up covers. The one I put on my last Ram lasted 7 years and 110K miles of Minnesota driving (nasty winter roads) and it was still in great shape - tight fit, velcro still held well and not ripped or faded - when I traded that truck off. Put another one on my 2017 Ram as soon as I got it. I'm sure it is not as convenient as a retractable but it works well for me and if you're OK with a roll-up this is what I'd recommend.

Rob
 

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It certainly hasn't drifted anywhere near roll up covers.
Posts 6 & 10 both mentioned them so I figured I'd offer input about them. If it isn't your preference feel free to ignore.

Rob
 

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Glad I live where this is not an issue (theft). Besides that I would lock anything valuable in the cab if it were.
 

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It certainly hasn't drifted anywhere near roll up covers.

Chris,

I can only repeat why my Dad taught me growing up... Locks only keep the honest people out. Given enough time and resources, ALL security is defeatable. The best you can do is make yourself a smaller needle in a bigger haystack.
 

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Curious as to why the OP ruled out a roll-up cover. I have had a Truxedo Lo-Pro on my Silverado for 3 years. I really like it. It is functional, yet unobstrusive in that it is barely noticeable. And it rolls up completely out of the way when you need to put larger items in the bed. No drilling required for install.
 

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Curious as to why the OP ruled out a roll-up cover. I have had a Truxedo Lo-Pro on my Silverado for 3 years. I really like it. It is functional, yet unobstrusive in that it is barely noticeable. And it rolls up completely out of the way when you need to put larger items in the bed. No drilling required for install.
I've had roll-up covers, and they're "ok". Wouldn't go back there though. I don't like the noise they make at highway speed, and dealing with them in the cold when you have to unroll them to put them back was never much fun. So, I could understand why Chris would possibly have ruled them out if he had one in the past and didn't like it.
 

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Curious as to why the OP ruled out a roll-up cover. I have had a Truxedo Lo-Pro on my Silverado for 3 years. I really like it. It is functional, yet unobstrusive in that it is barely noticeable. And it rolls up completely out of the way when you need to put larger items in the bed. No drilling required for install.
I have the same cover for 8.5 years now and still looks new with a semi-annual treatment of 303. Has braces for snow load that are invisible.

This cover suits me well. Sometimes when on a grocery run we run into something we want to take home. Just roll it up and load.

But C-Range said in his first post not to even bother mentioning ones like these.....
 
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