I just purchased a brand new 2011 Dodge Ram 1500 Tradesman, with an 8 foot bed. I've never had a tonneau cover on any of my trucks, but I wanna get one for the Ram. But there are so many styles to choose from. First off, I would only need full access to the bed maybe 10 times a year. In other words, about 99% of the time, I wouldn't need full access to the bed. I don't use my truck for anything other than transportation. (i.e. it's not a work truck.) I just wanted a big, powerful (5.7 Hemi) truck with a big bed, for no other reason than, "just because".
I don't wanna spend over $300 for a tonneau cover. So, in checking out tonneau covers, the snap down models are the cheapest. My brother had a snap down model, and he didn't mind it at all. Many say, "oh, don't get a snap down." But I'm not ruling them out. I can get the "Advantage Sure Fit" (part number 602016) from TruckChamps.com for $195.74. (after their 10% discount). There are 3 support struts under the tarp which do not roll up with the tarp. They must be manually removed. I don't see that as a big deal as I wouldn't be removing them very often, and they slip right in and out. Are there problems in winter with these snap down models (ice, snow)? I'm not to concerned about theft of items in the bed as I never leave anything in the bed. Here's the link for this model. http://www.truckchamp.com/products/S...hLogId/5250258
Another friend of mine has the TruXedo TruXport. I can get this (part# 248901) from TruckChamp.com for $286.74 (after their 10% discount). He really likes his and it does seem like a nice durable unit. He's had his for 6 years with no problems. And he's constantly accessing his entire bed. Here's the link for this model: http://www.truckchamp.com/products/R...hLogId/5250261
Both of the above models would make the top stake pockets in my side rails unusable as their installation would cover them up. I don't know if that's a big deal or not.
A third option is the TonnoPro LowRoll (part# LR-2025) for $299.00 from TruckChamp.com. With this model, the tarp fits "inside" the bed and doesn't cover the top stake pockets. It appears that the rails on this model intrude into the bed more than on the first two I mentioned. I don't know if I would ever use these top stake pockets as I've never had them on my other trucks. Here's the link for this model. http://www.truckchamp.com/products/T...hLogId/5250251
So I've narrowed it down to one of above 3. Again, I would hardly ever need full access to the bed. I'm only installing a tonneau to improve MPG.
At this point, I have no special preference for any of the above. I think they're all good units and look nice. But what do I know??? That's why I'd like to pick your brains. If you have one of these models, or a similar model, can you give me your feedback (both pro and con). Or, have any of you had a bad experience with any of the above companies (TruckChamps, TonnoPro, TruXedo, or Advantage).
Thanks for your responses,