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Old 11-15-2006, 11:59 AM   #15
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a bed slid might be a great idea for your "VERY SPECIFIC NEEDS". Hiway products in Oregon has what they call the Gorilla slide. Good for 2000 lbs evenly distributed. They also make custom applications as far as tool boxes and bed storage. If dollars and cents is a serious issue tho....they might be too spendy. Their products are unsurpassed in quality.

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Old 03-15-2007, 10:55 AM   #16
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The biggest thing I see with the soft tops is security issues?..The best security is the tops that are solid with no way to see in. But thats just me....I first think of all the things I need then what is safe. Almost everyone I know has been robbed either on the road or setting at home. I am NOT a pessimist but carefull. Security is very important.

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Old 03-15-2007, 01:08 PM   #17
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I've had an A.R.E. topper (tonneau type) on my long-bed dually for several years now. The only problem I experienced initially was that it came equipped with an electric lock designed to work with the vehicle locks. The dealer would not even attempt to hook it up since he had experienced many problems in so doing - and recommended that I take the truck to GM. The more I looked at the hookup procedure the less interested I became. Ultimately I re-worked the lock and removed the electric actuator. I've been a happy camper ever since. The lid does rise slightly above the truck rails when closed - giving about another 2-3 inches of overhead clearance that I desperately needed to accommodate my Honda Generators on a rolling platform (---i.e. - "bed slide".)

2003 GMC 3500 D/A, CC, LB, 4x4 and 2000 Airstream Excella 30. WBCCI 7074
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Old 03-15-2007, 01:19 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by DFord79
The biggest thing I see with the soft tops is security issues?..The best security is the tops that are solid with no way to see in. But thats just me....I first think of all the things I need then what is safe. Almost everyone I know has been robbed either on the road or setting at home. I am NOT a pessimist but carefull. Security is very important.
I though about that also but have you seen the micky mouse locks on some of the solid tops, anyone can pop those open.

The only way to see in the softopper is through the rear window just like most tops.

If they want to steel something they will, at least my top will just get zippered back, no broken lock or glass.

I have insurance so if the worst happens big deal.

The advantages in the couple of months that I have been using it is fantastic, I can carry anything big. If I need to get a fridg, or other large package like a baby elephant all I need to do is pop the snaps it takes literally 3-4 minutes to fold it out the way, or 5 more minutes to remove it altogether.

The other nice thing is the cost-----$650 for my 8 foot bed model.
'77 Sovereign Intl 31' CB
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Old 03-16-2007, 01:37 PM   #19
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A.R.E. top

I have the ARE top with the optional rear door. Yes, the door costs a few hundred extra, but I really like it. This totally eliminates the heavy truck tailgate, making reaching in for things much easier, and rear visibility while driving (without the trailer) much better. The cap's main door is like a liftgate, rising plenty high to take bicycles etc. in and out.

This is my first cap (other than a flat tonneau type) but I am disappointed in the construction. Caulking hangs down in one place inside, and the fold-down window has a poorly aligned aluminum frame. There is a light (one light is standard, and all you need) but the wires to the light are poorly secured. The side windows on both sides fold down for more easy access. The paint matches very nicely.

it is far more functional than a tonneau with easy bike storage and badly need storage space.
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Old 05-08-2007, 07:10 AM   #20
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I have an ARE Z Series. I did a lot of research and went with it because of the quality, durability and the fact that it really looked nice on my truck.

You can get the side window option where the windows fold outward, allowing you to get into the inside of your truck bed from the side. This makes accessing things like tool boxes a breeze. ARE uses auto quality locks, which are as strong/secure as you can get.

If you really want to get into your truck bed you could look into a slide like this:

Truck Bed Extender by Extendo Bed
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Old 05-08-2007, 08:02 AM   #21
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I just ordered a Leer 100XQ cab high cap, which is supposedly the top of their line, for my F250 crew. It's my second Leer. The first has been on my Chevy TV for over 10 years with no problems whatsoever, and still looks great. I like how they design their caps for each make/model of truck, and the exact paint match. In fact, the dealer wouldn't place the order until I provided the VIN for the color code. I was considering the an ARE, but I liked how the raised contour on the Leer cap complimented the lines of the doors on the F250.
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Old 05-08-2007, 08:10 AM   #22
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Electric retractable tonneau cover

We looked at various cap and cover alternatives for our 2003 Silverado crew cab. We had a soft tonneau cover, which was easy to roll up, but it provided no security (it would have been easy to cut and the tailgate is non-locking).

We were looking for a cap or cover which could provide some degree of security, and yet could be rolled back or easily removed if we needed to haul something large when not camping. A major criterion was not limiting visibility out of the back window, which was hard enough to see out of as it is when backing up without the trailer.

While camping in Tucson at an RV park, we noticed a hard rollup cover a "Bedlocker" brand. It is expensive and there are several choices, but it met our needs exactly. We selected the plastic-coated aluminum model, with an electric roll-up feature, and an optional lock for the tailgate. The lock is a rather simple device that could be easily overcome by a knowledgeable thief, but does provide some degree of security/deterrent and certainly is better than none at all. The lock functions with the remote key lock of the truck. Also, the cover can secured in any position (ie, partially open if needed).

Thus far, we are very satisfied both with looks and functionality. The only downside is cost a little over $2,000 installed. Here is the website with a picture of the cover in motion:


George & Pat
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Old 05-08-2007, 09:15 AM   #23
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I have a SnugTop XV with integtrated Yakima rack mounts and a fold down front window. The latter has never really worked well (I have rebuilt it...) but I like the shell. I had to replace one of the sliding windows last summer and it was above $300.

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