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Best bang for the buck Tonneau Cover

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by KeaganZ, Oct 17, 2022.

  1. Oct 17, 2022 at 2:33 PM
    #1
    KeaganZ

    KeaganZ [OP] Member

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    Hey everyone,
    I am looking for a Tonneau cover for my 2001 Tacoma and having a hard time figuring out one, if I should get a tri-fold or a soft cover and what the pros and cons of each would be. Secondly, what brand to get. I’m looking for decent quality but am not looking to spend a whole bunch of dough for the top of the line. After all I’m in college and just need my belongings to stay secure and dry. I’m also from Michigan so the cover needs to survive semi hot temperatures but also below freezing.

    Let me know what you guys think are good options.
    Thank you!!
     
  2. Oct 17, 2022 at 4:36 PM
    #2
    6P4

    6P4 Well-Known Member

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    "Secure" might be tough, depending on how strict your definition is.

    Most soft covers don't lock, and they can be cut through easily.

    If "out of sight" is all you need, there are some passable roll-up covers for around $150 on eBay. I'm currently using this one: https://www.ebay.com/itm/173594364403

    It's not great, but I'm content for the price. Expect to do a bit of mild fabrication or parts sourcing to get it mounted--the clamps they provided with mine didn't work, but I had some others on hand that did. The latch is also finnicky, but again... the price helps me look the other way.

    A tri-fold might be more secure, but likely also more expensive and it will block your back window when it's open.

    You might also be able to find a hard plastic or fiberglass cover, which is the most secure, but it prevents you from fully opening your bed.
     
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    #2
    KeaganZ[OP] likes this.
  3. Oct 17, 2022 at 5:13 PM
    #3
    KeaganZ

    KeaganZ [OP] Member

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    Wow, that’s really helpful! You have a point, and I should have specified that in this case secure for me, is fine to just be out of sight. In addition, my tailgate does not lock so I don’t think there would be any point in having a lockable hard cover. However, I would definitely be open to spend extra money on not having to mess with the cover not working properly.

    At this point I think soft cover is the way to go for me. The question now is, what have you guys used that works well?

    Thank you for the insight.
     
    BigEasy likes this.
  4. Oct 17, 2022 at 5:23 PM
    #4
    Paseo

    Paseo Active Member

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    There are certainly more options for a 6' bed, less so for the 5' bed. A new Bakflip -- which I do want as it's a hardcover that folds -- is $900 or so.

    I ended finding an A.R.E. on craigslist for a couple hundred. Doesn't get much more secure than this, but versatility is obvious lacking. A bed extender operates without removal which is a plus, but height and access drawback apply.

    tonneaaaauu1u1u.jpg
     
  5. Oct 17, 2022 at 5:33 PM
    #5
    HighCountryTacoma

    HighCountryTacoma Well-Known Member

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    I've had an Access Roll up on my truck for around 5 years works well, is holding up well and kinda mid price coming in at a little over $500.
     
  6. Oct 17, 2022 at 5:48 PM
    #6
    BigEasy

    BigEasy Well-Known Member

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    Nada
    I have truxedo truxsport... Very happy with it, but as others have stated, soft tonneau isn't the same security as hard tonneau...
     
  7. Oct 17, 2022 at 6:19 PM
    #7
    KeaganZ

    KeaganZ [OP] Member

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  8. Oct 17, 2022 at 6:27 PM
    #8
    6P4

    6P4 Well-Known Member

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    Toyota never put locking tailgates on 1st gens. You can get a retrofit lock if you want: https://www.amazon.com/Pop-Lock-PL5100-Tailgate-Standard/dp/B000GVM7CM

    I haven't used one myself and can't speak for their quality firsthand, but there are plenty of threads on the forum talking about them.
     
    Rhodes and KeaganZ[QUOTED][OP] like this.
  9. Oct 17, 2022 at 9:04 PM
    #9
    Paseo

    Paseo Active Member

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    The A.R.E. I have shells over the perimeter of the bed and tailgate, you can't open the tailgate with the tonneau down and locked.

    A.R.E..jpg
     
  10. Oct 18, 2022 at 4:46 AM
    #10
    Rhodes

    Rhodes Well-Known Member

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    I’ve got one of these on, and I feel like it’s pretty janky. It just feels like cheap plastic that one good tug can rip it off..
     
  11. Oct 18, 2022 at 6:18 AM
    #11
    exminnesotaboy

    exminnesotaboy Well-Known Member

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    Bilstein 5100's / OME 881's / Wheelers 5 leaf pack / Level8 MK6/ 265/75-16 Bridgestone Dueler tires
    I've had a PopNLock tailgate lock for years. it always felt cheap, but always worked. It finally broke last winter at about -25 temp. I replaced it with a cheap ebay non-locking version as I really don't store valuable stuff in my bed. Plus, my alarm is set lightly, so if my tailgate is open, it will probably go off.

    I've also had a Access roll up cover since I bought my truck (about 12 years) and it has been fantastic. If you get a roll up cover, be sure to get one that attaches with velcro on the sides, not a push-rubber-in-channel type - they do not work as well in cold winters. I've had well over a foot of snow on it and it has held up very well. I also have a Softopper that I put on when camping in the summer/spring/fall.

    One thing I have learned is that a good/persistent thief will get into your bed no matter if you have a hard cover, soft cover, tri-fold or hard/soft shell. Just keeping stuff out of sight is the main key that will help.
     
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    #11
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  12. Nov 3, 2022 at 1:41 PM
    #12
    jjsinaz

    jjsinaz Well-Known Member

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    I just put a Tyger T3 on my new DCLB Sport. So far I'm very happy with it. I've always had soft tonneaus on all my trucks and since I really don't keep anything that valuable in the bed I never really worried too much about the security aspect. (although I do understand those that might keep valuable stuff in there being concerned). I don't lock the tailgate either. I'd rather the would be thief just dropped the tailgate than cutting a hole in my cover to find out there's nothing worth stealing in there.
    Tonneau.jpg
     
  13. Nov 3, 2022 at 2:45 PM
    #13
    manapiko

    manapiko Well-Known Member

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    Pops got a Bakflip on his 2019 ram. It's REALLY nice actually. hard top, but rolls.
     
  14. Nov 3, 2022 at 3:15 PM
    #14
    penadam

    penadam Well-Known Member

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    I have the Bestop ziprail cover. It's held up well over 6 years of living outside in CO and has a lifetime warranty.
     
  15. Nov 3, 2022 at 4:09 PM
    #15
    treyus30

    treyus30 cntl-y

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    I've refrained on getting one because my truck sits outside. The only thing that doesn't degrade outside in AZ is aluminum, and those covers are EXPENSIVE.
     
  16. Nov 6, 2022 at 4:21 PM
    #16
    highvelocitytaco

    highvelocitytaco Well-Known Member

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    Can anyone point me in the direction of what fits my 2003 double cab. I'm looking for a soft top of some short .
     
  17. Nov 6, 2022 at 4:33 PM
    #17
    TacoTime55

    TacoTime55 TT57

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    OMG!

    I want an expensive tonneau cover...the Diamondback...so I can prevent this!

    EDIT: I like the expensive tonneau cover.

    IMG_5694_931062f2bbaf16d60659bd1c707cddb32c0e313c.jpg
     
  18. Apr 13, 2023 at 1:00 PM
    #18
    joea99

    joea99 Well-Known Member

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    How is that still holding up for you? How easy is it to roll and unroll and how securely does it hold in both positions?

    I currently have a roll up that has aluminum bows that snap on and off the bed and uses "snaps" to hold the cover on. It is getting harder and more annoying to use as the snaps can be difficult to work when it gets cooler. And my fingers are complaining every time. So I'm looking for an inexpensive replacement.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2023
  19. Apr 13, 2023 at 7:29 PM
    #19
    penadam

    penadam Well-Known Member

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    The cover is holding up pretty well. Since that last update, some of the plastic on the cover side has slightly degraded, but it doesn't really affect the functionality. The Velcro that is used to hold the cover when rolled up did fail, with all the loops falling off the backing. The company was going to replace it, but I felt silly pursuing it at for something so trivial when I rarely use that function. I simply brought some velcro strips that aren't sewn into the cover that will service the same purpose.

    The rolling up is easy. The rolling into the track it easy when it's warm, but more difficult when cold. Long trips in the cold when I'm in and out of the bed a lot are are rough on the fingers, but there's some techniques using your palm to get around it.

    Overall I'd recommend, especially given the price.
     

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