Ford Power Stroke Nation banner

1 - 20 of 31 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Ive got to get a cover for my truck. I'm thinking a topper due to having to carry my daughter's stuff back and forth to college... so i was wondering if the topper provided similar fuel savings as a tonneau cover.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
1,097 Posts
No. A topper will make your MPG worse. A tonneau improves your MPG.

Get a good tarp for the moving mission and a tonneau for everyday better MPG.
 

·
We put the FU! in FUN
Joined
·
1,625 Posts
No. A topper will make your MPG worse. A tonneau improves your MPG.

Get a good tarp for the moving mission and a tonneau for everyday better MPG.
Who makes a nice tonneau cover that doesnt cost an arm and a leg?
 
I

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Who makes a nice tonneau cover that doesnt cost an arm and a leg?
I like the access covers. I like the the way they roll up. Great design. I think there around $400 or so. I like the original not the laredo. The original sits a little higher and gives you a little more room under it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,042 Posts
I just put on a extang trifecta. No permanent rails, folds up easily and removes just as fast. They right at $400 and I am happy so far.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
No. A topper will make your MPG worse. A tonneau improves your MPG.

Get a good tarp for the moving mission and a tonneau for everyday better MPG.
Dave... i would have thought that either woudl have fixed the air flow problem that causes the MPG issue... Can you elaborate and give an example of how the topper does not and the tonneau does?

Rick
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,042 Posts
Look at NASCAR. They do not have long bodys or chopped backs, they have a slanted back. This is for better aerodynamics. While the air is already split by the cab it still requires power to pull that camper top through the air.

The best bet would be to have a sloping canopy or hard top from the top of the back of the cab all the way to the tailgate. The next best would be a flat cover.
 

·
40 lug nuts
Joined
·
3,433 Posts
Look at NASCAR. They do not have long bodys or chopped backs, they have a slanted back. This is for better aerodynamics. While the air is already split by the cab it still requires power to pull that camper top through the air.

The best bet would be to have a sloping canopy or hard top from the top of the back of the cab all the way to the tailgate. The next best would be a flat cover.
I agree, but we're also not driving 180 mph, are considerably higher off the ground, and aren't worried about rear lift / drafting / etc.....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,432 Posts
Nah, they're not that heavy. I have a ARE Z-Series and its 180 lbs.
Mine is the same exact canopy. Without actually weighing mine. Took (3) of us to get it on the truck. My father's canopy made by a different manufacturer, I could put it on myself, his is a shortbed though. His also didn't have all the nice carpeting inside either.

Is yours a shortbed?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,042 Posts
I agree, but we're also not driving 180 mph, are considerably higher off the ground, and aren't worried about rear lift / drafting / etc.....
You're right we're not but the principal is the same. Reduced drag is reduced drag.
 

·
40 lug nuts
Joined
·
3,433 Posts
Mine is the same exact canopy. Without actually weighing mine. Took (3) of us to get it on the truck. My father's canopy made by a different manufacturer, I could put it on myself, his is a shortbed though. His also didn't have all the nice carpeting inside either.

Is yours a shortbed?
Yup, full size short bed. I think the long bed comes in at 220 lbs or something like that.
 

·
40 lug nuts
Joined
·
3,433 Posts
You're right we're not but the principal is the same. Reduced drag is reduced drag.
Agreed, but there's considerably less drag at highway speeds than at racing speeds making the effects of topper versus tonneau on mpg negligible.

I've had both and didn't see much, if any, fuel economy gains from either.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
1,097 Posts
A topper makes a Super Duty into a virtual Excursion as far as air flow is concerned. Like a Ex or a van, the entire frontal area chops off suddenly, leaving a gynormous low-pressure area behind the entire body, sucking the truck back.

A tonneau breaks the low-pressure area into two parts and the part from the cab is somewhat re-introduced to the air flow over the truck and the low pressure area behind the tail gate picks up this air flow, reducing drag.

Google up "Phil Knox." This dude has done a ton of experimenting on pickup truck aerodynamics.
 

·
40 lug nuts
Joined
·
3,433 Posts
Just looked up Phil Knox and it sure looks like he knows his business.

I spent some time on his site searching around and it looks like the one cap for pickups that showed the most promise was the one that started out at cab height and then tapered down to tailgate height. Kind of like a hatch back car. Ugly as sin, but showed real world gains. IIRC, they got 1.7 mpg better in combined city/highway driving. If thats the benchmark, I honestly don't see how you'll get better mpg gains than that with either a topper or a tonneau. Being optimistic, you might see a 1 mpg with a tonneu and no gains with a topper.

My point was that if you're only looking at a 1 mpg gain, you should buy what works best for your needs. And don't buy into the salesman telling you that you'll gain 2-3 mpg with either. As I mentioned earlier, I've had both toppers and tonneau covers and didn't see any gains worth mentioning.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
436 Posts
Discussion Starter #19
Found an article on an aerodynamic topper from a company called aerolid out of NORTH CAROLINA. This looks pretty good... the article also had some details that we all should follow for good mileage.

The recent spike in fuel costs is hitting tradesmen right in the bottom line. Plumbers, masons, drywall installers — and all the other professionals who require a full-size truck to bring home the bacon — are feeling the pinch. All is not lost, though; these three simple changes in driving style and vehicle maintenance can yield appreciable gains in fuel economy.


#1) Keep it under 65! Drag increases exponentially with speed, i.e. wind resistance at 80 MPH is four times greater than at 40 MPH. This makes a huge difference when you’re driving something with the aerodynamics of a brick.

#2) Lighten the load! Every extra 100 lbs of mass can reduce mileage by up to two percent. So if you really don’t need those extra bags of concrete, leave ‘em at home base.

#3) Keep those tires at their recommended air pressure! For every PSI below spec, fuel economy goes down by about half a percent. Check it regularly, when the tires are cold, with a quality pressure gauge. Dollar-store tire gauges are notoriously inaccurate, so spend a little extra on a decent one.

Car Talk’s Tom and Ray Magliozzi recommend Accu-Gauge tire-pressure gauges, and I generally take their advice. You can get one at Amazon for $13 — not a bad deal.

Note: Thanks to Brett Herndon for the photo. Brett is testing out Aero-Caps that significantly increase fuel economy, but at the moment he’s mired down trying to find funding to get it out to the masses.




Dave... this looks a little like something you came up with ...

Im trying to get a lead on how to get one. i'll let all know when i hear more.
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
1,097 Posts
I know Brett. His stuff is first-class.
 
1 - 20 of 31 Posts
Top