LSC15's 95 Tacoma 4x4

Go Back   Tacoma World Forums > Tacoma Discussion > 2nd Gen. Tacomas

Notices

Snugtop vs Leer vs A.R.E. -- verdict

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 01-15-2013, 10:31 AM   #1
Joemomma [OP] Joemomma is offline
Junior Member
Joemomma is on a distinguished road
Joined: Jan 2013, #95236
Location: Idaho
Gender: Male
Posts: 4
Joemomma's Tacoma Gallery
Snugtop vs Leer vs A.R.E. -- verdict

I've searched to the ends of the internet for opinions on camper shells and have found little consensus, tons of anecdotes and lots of hyperbole, but not many thorough, detailed testimonials.

When all was said and done, after scouring the internet I felt I was still at square one.

The best thing I did was get off my ass and go the the dealers for all three shells. Seeing firsthand the (sometimes huge) differences in build and hardware quality and strength made my decision extraordinarily easy.

If you're like me, when you buy a Tacoma, you plan on driving it til it dies. Then rebuild the engine and drive it some more. And the same principle applies to anything I put on my truck--I want to do it right the first time and would rather pay a premium for quality than deal with the hassles that may come from saving a few bucks on accessories.

If you're interested in knowing which camper shell is hands-down the best quality, regardless of price, here's my very well researched 2 cents on the matter:

Snugtop.

I looked at all three and there was no comparison. The available features, design, build quality and hardware quality on Snugtops are head and shoulders above ARE and Leer.

The biggest benefits, for me, were the following:

- Snugtop's 1" resin-filled honeycomb roof construction. Go to a Snugtop dealer and see a cut-away for yourself. This is standard on all Snugtops. Leer and ARE do not even come close. The Snugtop roof is built with a very thick layer of fiberglass, resin-filled honeycomb material, thick layer of fiberglass, and a very thick layer of color-matched gel-coat.

- Snugtop's window hinge design, hardware and build quality. The Snugtop fiberglass where the hinge attaches to the shell is heavily reinforced. The fiberglass all around and under the hinge mount is about 3 times thicker than the rest of the fiberglass (Leer and ARE do not have this). The hinges are about 2+ times bigger and much stronger than the Leer and ARE hinges. The hinges have 2 mounting bolts per hinge (Leer only has one per hinge).

- Snugtop's one piece rear window and channeled rain gutter. I've had camper shells with metal framed rear windows. Eventually over time, they all leaked. The camper shell got old and lost just enough shape that the window frame and rubber seal on the shell frame did not completely line up. Either that or the hinge got old and sloppy and the metal framed window did not properly line up with the shell frame. This meant rain very easily got in through the gaps. Also, the metal framed windows always drained into the bed of my truck.

- Snugtop's water seal. Snugtop has 4 rubber gaskets between the shell and the bed rail. The shell also overhangs the side of the bed so that water drains over the side and not onto the bed rail. Leer has a slight overhang and ARE has none.

- Snugtop's available features. Snugtop offers a few features that I like, that ARE and Leer do not offer-- oversized sliding windows and sliding, removable screens.

I just asked a friend who's had a Snugtop on his Tacoma for 10 years. He said he loves it. It keeps him dry. He was even rear-ended a few years ago and the shell survived, intact.

I'm not knocking Leer or ARE. If you're sticking to a budget, they're both good options.

But if you want the best quality and a shell that will keep you drier and happier for 10+ years, I recommend Snugtop.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 10:33 AM   #2
Questions... Morphology? Longevity? Incept dates?
OZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
OZ-T's Avatar
Name: Peter North
Joined: Dec 2009, #27584
Location: British Columbia
Gender: Dude
Posts: 87,133
OZ-T's Tacoma Gallery
Can you get a reinforced roof with the Snugtop models capable of carrying 400lbs ?
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 10:35 AM   #3
Senior Member
friction is one of the sharper tools in the shedfriction is one of the sharper tools in the shedfriction is one of the sharper tools in the shedfriction is one of the sharper tools in the shedfriction is one of the sharper tools in the shedfriction is one of the sharper tools in the shedfriction is one of the sharper tools in the shedfriction is one of the sharper tools in the shedfriction is one of the sharper tools in the shedfriction is one of the sharper tools in the shedfriction is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
friction's Avatar
Joined: Jan 2010, #30064
Location: Charleston, SC
Age: 40
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,794
friction's Tacoma Gallery
Unfortunately, Snugtops are all but impossible to get east of the Mississippi. They do look purty, though.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 12:58 PM   #4
Junior Member
JustMe is on a distinguished road
Joined: Dec 2009, #28122
Gender: Male
Posts: 28
JustMe's Tacoma Gallery
Quote:
Originally Posted by OZ-T View Post
Can you get a reinforced roof with the Snugtop models capable of carrying 400lbs ?
You can order the top reinforced with a 500LB rating. I know it part of the sportsman package, not sure if you can order the reinforcement by by itself.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 02:41 PM   #5
Questions... Morphology? Longevity? Incept dates?
OZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shedOZ-T is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
OZ-T's Avatar
Name: Peter North
Joined: Dec 2009, #27584
Location: British Columbia
Gender: Dude
Posts: 87,133
OZ-T's Tacoma Gallery
Quote:
Originally Posted by JustMe View Post
You can order the top reinforced with a 500LB rating. I know it part of the sportsman package, not sure if you can order the reinforcement by by itself.
Cool
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 04:10 PM   #6
Bad Spuller
Beavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
Beavis0076's Avatar
Name: Beavis
Joined: Feb 2012, #73234
Location: Seattle ish
Age: 37
Gender: Male
Posts: 11,392
Beavis0076's Tacoma Gallery
I had a snugtop on my 12 taco.
I was rearended recently.. and my shell didnt even budge, truck was totaled.
however.. mine did leak.. had it looked at, still leaked. ( at the door somewhere)
I got a new tacoma, and ordered anotherone anyway.. as I loved it. This time I upgraded models and got the carpeted headliner, 12 volt light.. (batt one sucked) and the rain gutter. (hopefully that solves the leaking issue.)
my brother has a leer on his.. and its very nice as well.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 04:16 PM   #7
Senior Member
Larry is one of the sharper tools in the shedLarry is one of the sharper tools in the shedLarry is one of the sharper tools in the shedLarry is one of the sharper tools in the shedLarry is one of the sharper tools in the shedLarry is one of the sharper tools in the shedLarry is one of the sharper tools in the shedLarry is one of the sharper tools in the shedLarry is one of the sharper tools in the shedLarry is one of the sharper tools in the shedLarry is one of the sharper tools in the shed
Joined: Jul 2010, #40895
Posts: 5,999
Larry's Tacoma Gallery
Quote:
Originally Posted by friction View Post
Unfortunately, Snugtops are all but impossible to get east of the Mississippi. They do look purty, though.
never had a Snugtop shell...

but I have had 2 Snuglid hard tonneau covers on past trucks. I ordered them both from Snugtop and had them shipped.

they were both top notch quality and water tight.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 06:02 PM   #8
Member
stractman is one of the sharper tools in the shedstractman is one of the sharper tools in the shedstractman is one of the sharper tools in the shedstractman is one of the sharper tools in the shedstractman is one of the sharper tools in the shedstractman is one of the sharper tools in the shedstractman is one of the sharper tools in the shedstractman is one of the sharper tools in the shedstractman is one of the sharper tools in the shedstractman is one of the sharper tools in the shedstractman is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
stractman's Avatar
Name: J
Joined: Apr 2012, #77738
Location: the front range, CO
Gender: Male
Posts: 54
stractman's Tacoma Gallery
another vote for snugtop.

got sliding glass with removable screens so i can always have a dog head sticking out the side (unfortunately, there is permadrool on the side of the bed). carpeted headliner is comfortable and looks good. the light is hooked into power so i always have light. i only need a key turn to open the rear glass window, no latches sticking out to deal with. the window that butts up against my cab folds down. it also has a sliding glass mini-window so you can have a pass-through to your cab from inside the shell. finally, i have rack rails mounted on the shell. i've hauled huge bookcases and dressers on that rail using yakima bars. now i use it for my fatcat 6 snow/ski carrier.

yes, it's pricey. this thing has lasted years and still looks brand new. i love my snugtop. get it with all the options you want so you don't have to go back and drill into it with substandard fitting/seal.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 06:19 PM   #9
Bleeding Bank Account Member
DSYLEXC is on a distinguished road
 
DSYLEXC's Avatar
Law Enforcement:
Name: Andrew
Joined: Oct 2012, #88288
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Gender: Male
Posts: 78
DSYLEXC's Tacoma Gallery
snuglid on my 2012...no issues
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 06:31 PM   #10
I'm your huckleberry
skidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
skidooman's Avatar
Name: TJ
Joined: Apr 2011, #54438
Location: Elko, NV
Age: 29
Gender: Dude
Posts: 3,925
skidooman's Tacoma Gallery
Love my snugtop. Also they're the only ones that have skirted sides, all glass rear door and windoors for a short bed, all in one shell.
  Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 06:39 PM   #11
'MERICA
TacoSkeet is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoSkeet is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoSkeet is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoSkeet is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoSkeet is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoSkeet is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoSkeet is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoSkeet is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoSkeet is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoSkeet is one of the sharper tools in the shedTacoSkeet is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
TacoSkeet's Avatar
Coast Guard: PO2
Name: Steven
Joined: Oct 2012, #89164
Location: Memphis, TN
Age: 22
Gender: Male
Posts: 642
TacoSkeet's Tacoma Gallery
I had a snugtop and my buddy had a leer and then an ARE. neither the ARE or LEER compared to the snug. Its legit!
  Reply With Quote
Old 03-07-2013, 01:42 PM   #12
Junior Member
kdewit is on a distinguished road
Joined: Mar 2013, #99205
Location: Portland, OR
Gender: Male
Posts: 25
kdewit's Tacoma Gallery
I think snugtop recommends the reinforced top if you put a rack on and want to carry up to 200 lbs. Anyone have thoughts on that?
Also, who has the remote opener option tied into your truck remote? Sounds like a good option to me!
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2013, 08:16 AM   #13
Big Metal Hubajube
oZmonKey is one of the sharper tools in the shedoZmonKey is one of the sharper tools in the shedoZmonKey is one of the sharper tools in the shedoZmonKey is one of the sharper tools in the shedoZmonKey is one of the sharper tools in the shedoZmonKey is one of the sharper tools in the shedoZmonKey is one of the sharper tools in the shedoZmonKey is one of the sharper tools in the shedoZmonKey is one of the sharper tools in the shedoZmonKey is one of the sharper tools in the shedoZmonKey is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
oZmonKey's Avatar
Army: SatCom Veteran
Joined: Jan 2011, #49599
Location: Northern Colorado
Gender: Dude
Posts: 1,253
oZmonKey's Tacoma Gallery
Quote:
Originally Posted by friction View Post
Unfortunately, Snugtops are all but impossible to get east of the Mississippi. They do look purty, though.
poopernickels.

According to Snugtop website, nearest dealer is in Missouri.
They guesstimate ~$650 just to freight it over.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2013, 08:21 AM   #14
2xR 2xR is offline
Member
2xR is on a distinguished road
Army:
Joined: Apr 2013, #101369
Gender: Male
Posts: 49
2xR's Tacoma Gallery
Just picked up my Century topper yesterday. It's actually made by Leer and is about 15-20% cheaper than the equivalent Leer. I have had 3 Leers and one ARE previously and the Century is absolutely top notch!!!

Snugtop vs Leer vs A.R.E. -- verdict-imageuploadedbytapatalk1366903279.701844.jpg
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2013, 09:29 AM   #15
I'm your huckleberry
skidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shedskidooman is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
skidooman's Avatar
Name: TJ
Joined: Apr 2011, #54438
Location: Elko, NV
Age: 29
Gender: Dude
Posts: 3,925
skidooman's Tacoma Gallery
Looks good. Should get a vinyl guy to continue those graphics up the shell.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2013, 10:33 AM   #16
2xR 2xR is offline
Member
2xR is on a distinguished road
Army:
Joined: Apr 2013, #101369
Gender: Male
Posts: 49
2xR's Tacoma Gallery
Quote:
Originally Posted by skidooman View Post
Looks good. Should get a vinyl guy to continue those graphics up the shell.
That's what I was thinking!!!
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2013, 01:16 PM   #17
Senior Member
TRDsport253 is a splendid one to beholdTRDsport253 is a splendid one to beholdTRDsport253 is a splendid one to beholdTRDsport253 is a splendid one to beholdTRDsport253 is a splendid one to beholdTRDsport253 is a splendid one to beholdTRDsport253 is a splendid one to behold
 
TRDsport253's Avatar
Joined: Nov 2009, #25945
Location: Fife, Wa
Age: 27
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,669
TRDsport253's Tacoma Gallery
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2xR View Post
Just picked up my Century topper yesterday. It's actually made by Leer and is about 15-20% cheaper than the equivalent Leer. I have had 3 Leers and one ARE previously and the Century is absolutely top notch!!!

Attachment 209085
I like that topper. What's the between that and the Leer 100XL? Is the back door different?
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2013, 02:47 PM   #18
Senior Member
SLOsquirrel is on a distinguished road
 
SLOsquirrel's Avatar
Name: Scott
Joined: Dec 2011, #68828
Location: San Luis Obispo, CA
Gender: Male
Posts: 103
SLOsquirrel's Tacoma Gallery
LEER...

I like my Leer. Looked at all of them also.

IMHO leer is built just as well and looks better. The large overhang on the snugtop looks a lil funky to me.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2013, 03:09 PM   #19
Bad Spuller
Beavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shedBeavis0076 is one of the sharper tools in the shed
 
Beavis0076's Avatar
Name: Beavis
Joined: Feb 2012, #73234
Location: Seattle ish
Age: 37
Gender: Male
Posts: 11,392
Beavis0076's Tacoma Gallery
Quote:
Originally Posted by SLOsquirrel View Post
I like my Leer. Looked at all of them also.

IMHO leer is built just as well and looks better. The large overhang on the snugtop looks a lil funky to me.

only some snugtops have the large overhang.. my snugtop cab hi had a big overhang and I agree with you... but my new snugtop rebel has almost none.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2013, 07:25 PM   #20
Senior Member
GuapOh is just really niceGuapOh is just really niceGuapOh is just really niceGuapOh is just really nice
Joined: Mar 2011, #53345
Location: Nor Cal
Gender: Male
Posts: 447
GuapOh's Tacoma Gallery
Love my Snugtop XV.
  Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
WTB: leer/snugtop camper shell Davidson Buy / Sell / Trade - Other 0 11-18-2012 01:02 PM
Snugtop, Snugtop or Leer? [I know I know... pcledrew 2nd Gen. Tacomas 44 02-19-2012 08:24 PM
Yet another shell thread - Leer vs SnugTop petersharp 2nd Gen. Tacomas 10 03-05-2011 09:42 AM
Best place in SoCal to buy a topper? Snugtop? Leer? ARE? Deathbeard Southern California 3 03-02-2011 02:05 PM
A.R.E., Leer, Snugtop, or Swiss Truck cap? MAXTacoma 2nd Gen. Tacomas 12 01-28-2010 11:17 AM


Copyright © 2014 Tacoma Forum. Tacoma World is not owned by, or affiliated with Toyota Motor Corporation.