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Johndews 09-09-2015 10:19 PM

Tow Vehicle Bed Covers
We are purchasing a new pick up to tow our recently-acquired Classic 31. Any recommendations on a bed cover? Our auto dealer recommends a Leer 700 for about $1500. Any thoughts or experience of the rigid top vs. the stretched vinyl cover? Don't think we want the camper shell.

Hope I posted this in the right place. We are new to the Forum. Thanks.

switz 09-09-2015 10:26 PM

We went with a shell by Vision. I am able to put tall collapsing ladders, the generators and gas cans upright with the shell in place.

firstwave 09-09-2015 10:36 PM

I went with the aluminum flip back cover on my F-250. I wished I had gone with the camper shell.

Mrjkq 09-09-2015 10:43 PM

Suggest you google truck bed covers & YouTube videos of same. $1500.00 is extremely expensive unless it's something special. Most hard covers are very good products & from my experience easy to install & I'm not a do it yourself guy & with the YouTube videos to walk you through it, no problem.

Tuco 09-10-2015 12:16 AM

You said that you may not be interested in a shell, but but having one may give you some boost in fuel economy while towing. I have no data to support this claim, but we seem to get good mileage with it on (13-14 mpg towing depending on speed). Food for thought.

Kevin245 09-10-2015 06:12 AM

I have had an ARE tonneau on the bed of our 03 SuperCrew since 04 and it serves us well. Our next truck will likely be out fitted with one of the diamond back units.

Truck Bed Covers and Tonneau Covers : DiamondBack Truck Covers

Dexterpix 09-10-2015 06:24 AM

We use a factory (Mopar) tri fold soft cover. Works very well, no leeks and is easily removed by for clamps you release/lock by hand. Good compromise when you may need to use the entire bed for other reasons. You can have the cover and in less than 2 minutes have an open bed with no obstructions.

Joe D

AldeanFan 09-10-2015 06:45 AM

We've had a tri-fold for the last 8 years. Cost was around $350 for our Toyota, like most things a Ford or Chevy would have cost less. It works great for us and has held up very well. I like being able to fully remove it when I need the whole bed. If I needed a shell to fit all my gear I'd probably be carrying too much.

Wingeezer 09-10-2015 07:21 AM

Leer shell has been ideal for us - it becomes the "basement" of the Airstream and does a great job of keeping all the clutter out of the living space.

I suppose the major disadvantage of the shell compared to a flat cover is the lack of ability to carry taller objects in the truck when needed, but after two trucks with camper shells, in our case that has yet to be an issue. For other people it may be a deciding factor depending on the use they make of the truck.

Certainly a flat bed cover would be are more economical though.

Perhaps some folk just prefer the looks of a truck with a flat cover. As for appearance, I like the type of camper shell that is perfectly level with the truck cab and painted to match. Gives the truck the appearance of a large SUV rather than a commercial vehicle IMHO..


Ponyfvr 09-10-2015 07:40 AM

We have the Bakfilp Fibermax and we are very happy with it. Easy to install and keeps everything dry and secure. We bought our from ordered on Monday got it Thursday.

ROBERTSUNRUS 09-10-2015 08:18 AM

:) Hi, I bought a Retrax Pro roll up bed cover; It's somewhat expensive, but perfect for what we wanted.

mefly2 09-10-2015 08:44 AM

Weight the value of a shell over the just a cover ... it my be worth the negatives to go either way...only you can decide.

Echelon73 09-10-2015 08:54 AM

I like the retracting style bed covers that roll up into a canister. They use a small amount of the bed space for the canister, but they are extremely versatile, quick, and easy. I had a Roll N Lock on my last truck and loved it. I just purchased a "Roll Bak" made by Bak Industries for my new truck. They are usually made out of aluminum and lock to secure your valuables.

Nomad518 09-10-2015 09:15 AM

2 Attachment(s)
Check out the BAK Roll-X. That's what we have. Easy to install, and removable if needed. You can roll it up and strap it in the open position if you need to carry tall loads and you don't want to remove it. It locks in place along the full length of each side of your truck bed, and it can't be opened when you lock your tailgate. I paid about $850 for ours. Very happy with ours.

carver 1 09-10-2015 09:41 AM

Roll n Lock. I had one for many years while i was pulling my 5th Wheel. Trouble free and good quality. I switched to a topper when I went to an AS. I would seriously consider the topper for the additional storage it offers.


ShinyPete 09-10-2015 09:47 AM

I just finished nearly 3 years with a Fold-A-Cover by Steffens Automotive with an integrated toolbox under the front section on a crew cab F150. Outstanding product! It has four panels that fold up when needed, it is very well made, , quite secure and watertight, and the toolbox was a great feature. It served me very well and I only gave it up (currently for sale on Classifieds here :) ) because I went to a long bed F150.

2012FB 09-10-2015 09:58 AM

1 Attachment(s)
This is my second Roll-N-Lock in a row. Very good product.

RamblinManGa 09-10-2015 10:13 AM

Hi from AZ. . . I too put a tri fold cover on my F150, but it only gave me 21" of height when closed. The generator, for instance is 25" tall. I bought a Snugtop shell, with side awning type windows & ladder rack rails on top (for future) Pretty expensive, decent quality, & painted to match truck. It has worked fine, but I still think the truck looked better without it. . .regards, Craig

KJRitchie 09-10-2015 10:28 AM

I had a Bakflip VP tonneau cover on my Tundra with a Bedrug bed liner on the floor. At first I was OK with it but once I acquired a couple of foldup reclining chairs and my portable solar panel suit case I found I had to lay those items flat which took up a lot of space. When I bought my new Ram 2500 recently I decide to go with a cab high camper shell with full Bedrug interior and Yakima roof rack. I can now place the recliners and solar panel on edge which frees up a lot of bed floor space. The only disadvantages are the extra cost of the shell, having to haul yard debris might be more difficult to load/unload and clean up and the possibility of not being able to haul a tall object which I doubt I will do.


daveswenson 09-10-2015 10:40 AM


Originally Posted by ROBERTSUNRUS (Post 1682042)
:) Hi, I bought a Retrax Pro roll up bed cover; It's somewhat expensive, but perfect for what we wanted.

I have this one too. We're very happy with it.

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