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Pop & Lock PL5300 Review

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Old 05-16-2010, 02:16 PM   #1
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Wink Pop & Lock PL5300 Review (w/ Pics!)

I just got my Pop N' Lock PL5300 (for Tacomas w/ Back Up Camera) from truckalterations.com. They delivered it for free in three days! It was also the cheapest price I found: $47.

Based on reading what others have said about it I was a bit apprehensive at first. Finally, I decided I wanted a manual locking handle and there was just no other options.

I tested it out before even deciding to install it. The handle isn't as flimsy as others said... this could be an updated version I suppose. It worked fairly well but I read that performance could fade after awhile so I decided to lubricate all the moving parts. Since material used is similar to what you'd find in a gun (rubbing metals, springs, etc) I decided to use the gun oil since it makes it water/rust resistant (picture below of what I used.)

The key going in and out of the lock wasn't as smooth as I wanted so I followed others advice here and used Graphite Lube before installing. Good thing I did too since graphite can get messy. It's much smoother now.

The install was quite simple. I used this thread: http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/2nd-gen-tacomas/57718-poplock-pl5300-2009-tacoma-cam-install-tutorial.html and the video at the bottom of this page as guides for installing since the factory instructions were pretty poor.

Bottom line: I’m pretty happy with the purchase. Although I would’ve much preferred a PL5200 style lock, this is pretty good too. They could’ve used a better quality plastic though. It feels a little bit cheap and not perfectly uniform but only if you are really looking for flaws. For $47 though, this is a great buy and you can even still use your back up camera.

Here are some pictures:

Right out of the box



This is the graphite spray I used to make key going in/out more smooth


The gun oil I used on all moving metal parts and springs for rust resistant and lubrication


Hardware I used for the install (used 303 to give it some UV protection)


Inside of the factory handle


This is the hardest part of the install: trying to figure out how to get off the wire harness for the camera. Press down on where the yellow arrow points and it should come out smoothly. Don't yank it off.


What you should have left after installing.


For more intallation see video below and link above. Here are pictures of it installed. Some complained about the fit, I don't have any issues as all as you can see on the pics. It fits exactly as well as the Toyota handle.




This video by some guy shows how to install and how the handle operates (please note he doesn't have a backup camera)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EbwtKOZYeHY

Let me know if you have any questions.
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Old 05-21-2010, 09:57 PM   #2
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2nd best thing about it is that the port for the camera angles the camera slightly more upward from the factory setup so you can see a little more of what is behind you in the distance instead of just at the bumper. You can still see all of the bumper and such but further behind... Me likey lots!
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Old 05-23-2010, 01:16 AM   #3
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Thumbs up Design

I wasn't too keen on the design before but it's grown on me. PL5300 replacing the entire handle as opposed to just having a blocking mechanism on factory handle has a huge advantage. When it's locked, as you can see in the video above, you can pull the handle all day long, it won't do anything (much like the factory door handles on cars.)

This means that it can't be forced open by putting brute force on the handle. You have to destroy the entire tailgate, or pick the lock before you can get it to open if you don't have a key.

I take back what I said about wanting PL5200 style lock.
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Old 08-01-2010, 12:39 PM   #4
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Nice review. I'll be ordering mine soon.
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Old 08-01-2010, 01:42 PM   #6
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I have one and love it, mine however is the power version, works awsome.
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Old 08-02-2010, 05:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by H0LLYW00D View Post
I have one and love it, mine however is the power version, works awsome.
Now you gave me something else to look at. Thanks
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Old 08-02-2010, 07:05 PM   #8
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Do yourself a favor and do a search in the 2nd gen section,there are a lot of mixed reviews.
I had one that would lock every time i closed the tailgate,got the replacement spring from Pop and Lock ,it lasted a little over a week and it started doing the same thing again!
I'm now back to the oem one and have been thinking about getting a Dynolock.

Denis
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Old 08-03-2010, 07:50 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 64Wildcat View Post
Do yourself a favor and do a search in the 2nd gen section,there are a lot of mixed reviews.
I had one that would lock every time i closed the tailgate,got the replacement spring from Pop and Lock ,it lasted a little over a week and it started doing the same thing again!
I'm now back to the oem one and have been thinking about getting a Dynolock.

Denis
I think they have new(er) models out now. I got mine in Early May and it hasnt given me issues at all. The material also doesnt seem flimsy like the early users have reviewed. My only complaint is the plastic finish. I feel the color should've looked more uniform.
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Old 08-03-2010, 10:19 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NAYo2002 View Post
I think they have new(er) models out now. I got mine in Early May and it hasnt given me issues at all. The material also doesnt seem flimsy like the early users have reviews. My only complaint is the plastic finish. I feel the color should've looked more uniform.
x2....got mine around the end of June and so far it's been flawless. I agree about the finish. It looked a little dried out after couple days. Now I keep it coated with 303 Protectant.
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Old 08-03-2010, 12:07 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iSTIZO99 View Post
x2....got mine around the end of June and so far it's been flawless. I agree about the finish. It looked a little dried out after couple days. Now I keep it coated with 303 Protectant.
I thought about taking it off and putting a coat of shoe polish on lol.
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Old 08-03-2010, 03:35 PM   #12
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Looking dried out isn't a good thing. I wonder if hitting it with a hot air gun would melt it into a glossy look. Of course I would do this while the device was removed from the truck body and camera removed.

Does the 303 Protectant just put a glossy finish on plastic? I'm just not familiar with this product yet. It sounds like some automotive protectant like Armor All.

-Joe
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Old 08-03-2010, 04:07 PM   #13
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Yea 303 is a UV protectant, can't tell you if it's better than Armor All though since I just started using it. It puts a slight sheen on the handle, but it's definitely not glossy if that's what you're looking for.

PL5300 works great for my needs...tailgate is secured.
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:21 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeSchmuck View Post
Looking dried out isn't a good thing. I wonder if hitting it with a hot air gun would melt it into a glossy look. Of course I would do this while the device was removed from the truck body and camera removed.

Does the 303 Protectant just put a glossy finish on plastic? I'm just not familiar with this product yet. It sounds like some automotive protectant like Armor All.

-Joe
IMO 303 is superior to ArmorAll... It's called "Aerospace Protectant,"and mainly used for boats vinyl/plastic. Since it's designed to be used on exterior surfaces, it works better in the sun. Armorall leaves a oily finish which can damage plastic if you let it dry out in the sun.
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:27 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NAYo2002 View Post
IMO 303 is superior to ArmorAll... It's called "Aerospace Protectant,"and mainly used for boats vinyl/plastic. Since it's designed to be used on exterior surfaces, it works better in the sun. Armorall leaves a oily finish which can damage plastic if you let it dry out in the sun.
I was just using Armorall as a comparison to have a basic understanding of the 303 stuff. I may need to purchase some of the 303 for my Access LE cover I just purchased and am hopeful that the Pop & Lock will look good for a long time. I orderd everything yesterday so hopefully it will arrive Monday.

-Joe
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Old 08-04-2010, 09:34 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoeSchmuck View Post
I was just using Armorall as a comparison to have a basic understanding of the 303 stuff. I may need to purchase some of the 303 for my Access LE cover I just purchased and am hopeful that the Pop & Lock will look good for a long time. I orderd everything yesterday so hopefully it will arrive Monday.

-Joe
Yea.. I use 303 on my TorzaTop since it's made of vinyl. After 4 months and being through over 15 auto car washes, it still looks brand new after applying 303. I use 303 to clean/protect my dash and interior plastic surfaces as well.

If you want to make the PL5300 better looking, I'd def put a coat of shoe polish on it to make the color more uniform before putting it on the truck.
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Old 08-04-2010, 12:04 PM   #17
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I used 303 on my Bakflip as well, but totally forgot about the dash. Good idea!
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Old 08-04-2010, 12:10 PM   #18
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Just a note of reference. I has posted in NUMEROUS other pop and lock threads about the quality being horrible, the early mods were just that, horrible. The handle was flimsy and it just sucked all around. I had called pop and lock, and they sent me a new spring (2 of them) AND a new handle. The new handle is seriously sturdy. It has yet to not open when I pull it. However, the spring is working better, but it still locks me out...I can't keep my tailgate unlocked even if I wanted to...this doesnt bother me as much...I was just pissed when I would unlock it, and it still wouldn't open, that was caused by a weak and flimsy handle that would flex and not do its job correctly. I noticed when installing the new spring...theres a small piece of plastic that broke off that I believe had a nub on the end to hold the spring in place...I beleive THAT is the reason why I can't leave it unlocked and will be on the phone with Pop and lock about a replacement. All this being said, My friend got a new pop and lock and the quality is LEAP AND BOUNDS better. It's still not as good as the quality of what they used to produce in 2008 and earlier...but the technology of the back up camera has changed everything, so I am willing to understand.
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Old 08-04-2010, 01:13 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MJonesTrumpet View Post
It's still not as good as the quality of what they used to produce in 2008 and earlier...but the technology of the back up camera has changed everything, so I am willing to understand.
Pre-backup cam models aren't replacement handles. They were merely inserts to block the handle, and thus can be forced open. The thing I like about PL5300 is when locked, you can pull the handle and it will swing... it just won't open till you unlock it (same concept as our door locks.) That said I really wish they spent a little more on the plastic to make it more uniform in color.

All in all, it cost me less than $50 so I understand they had to make cuts somewhere. I'd pay $100 for a better plastic model but that's just me.
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Old 08-09-2010, 04:36 PM   #20
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Just Installed

Well I am please to have my Pop & Lock 5300 installed on my Tacoma. Everything was very easy to install. The only real problem I had (delayed me for 2 minutes) was getting the locating tab on the rear panel out of the metal frame hole (just above the handle area). I didn't want to break it, although it would have no affect on performance had I broken it. Installation of the camera was painless although I had to use a small drill bit to open up two guide pin holes just a little bit so it would fit well.

Operation of the handle is nice and smooth as well as the locking was smooth. I used a little blue locktite on the two mounting bolts (used the two bolts holding the camera in place), which also inhibits corrosion (present on the old handle bolts).

Mechanical quality appears fine. Visual quality, well I'm not too happy with it. The plastic is a cheap looking high gloss plastic which scratches very easily so it shows wear very quickley. The half dozen times I opened the tailgate showed several scratches on the handle. I would rather have a matte finish.

Purchased the unit from TruckAlterations for $47.00 delivered.

-Joe
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