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Thank-you, Jesse14. Just as a personal preference not knowing any better, I think that instead of the OEM, I would lean more towards the Extang Encore as suggested above, because it does allow front of the bed access.
Bill
 

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We spent a day running on back country dusty roads and found our bed completely dusted under the tonneau. I purchased some tail gate seal, it applied really easy, looked like it sealed well when I closed the tail gate, but then came the problem where I could not get the tail gate to open. The seal was putting enough pressure on the tailgate that the latches would not release. I ultimately had to cut out the seal on both sides to relieve enough pressure to get the tail gate to open. The trick would be to apply a seal that does not put any pressure on the tailgate when closed............
Bill
OK, it appears that maybe I have found a seal that appears to fill the gaps nicely, but does not put undo pressure upon the tailgate to keep it from opening. I will come back and report success or not the next time we venture upon a dusty road.

Bill
 

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I am still recommending the Lomax. I haven’t had a negative report from anyone who has bought one. @wjfyfe you might consider it.

Keep in mind the OEM is an Extang derived design most likely made with Extang parts. Extang has long had a problem with leaking on their FRP hard covers. They have known about this issue for several years. And they keep selling it. The OEM cover is a bad buy and a ripoff if you buy it installed by a dealer.
 

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I went with the Extang Encore in 2018 and couldn't be happier. Very little to no water intrusion, easy to operate, and I can get into either end. Front panel locks. Does restrict trunk cover a little but not enough to worry about unless you are going to open it fully to stand in there. Can easily be removed if I need use of full bed.
As soon as etrailer gets around to refunding my money on the Trifecta Signature cover, (they are kinda taking me the long way around the barn), I am just about to pull the trigger for an Encore. But, before I do, the Exceed has also caught my eye. Thoughts?
Thanks,
Bill
 

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While waiting for etrailer to stop dragging their feet on a refund on our Trifecta Signature, another specific question is, which hard covers maintain the greatest clearance from the bed floor to under the cover?

Bill
 

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While waiting for etrailer to stop dragging their feet on a refund on our Trifecta Signature, another specific question is, which hard covers maintain the greatest clearance from the bed floor to under the cover?

Bill
The OEM cover clearance is the same as the bed depth, as it sits atop the bed sides.
 

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The OEM cover clearance is the same as the bed depth, as it sits atop the bed sides.
Yep, by looking at pictures I believe that you are right. Currently it appears that Justina has her eye on the Xceed , but it appears to be at the sacrifice of some of of the bed space.
Bill
 

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Yep, by looking at pictures I believe that you are right. Currently it appears that Justina has her eye on the Xceed , but it appears to be at the sacrifice of some of of the bed space.
Bill
The Xceed looks like a nice cover. A disadvantage of the OEM is that the section by the cab doesn't fold up like that. It is easy to remove, however, and doesn't require rails since it sits on top.
 

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While waiting for etrailer to stop dragging their feet on a refund on our Trifecta Signature, another specific question is, which hard covers maintain the greatest clearance from the bed floor to under the cover?

Bill
The Lomax preserves the most vertical space of any low-profile hard trifold. I explained that advantage and how Agri-Cover went about achieving it in detail in the big Lomax review. The Extang Encore is a good cover, but it uses the same FRP (plastic) cover material as the OEM and Solid-Fold 2, both of which have well documented leaking issues and valleys that develop over time where water pools.
 

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The Lomax preserves the most vertical space of any low-profile hard trifold. I explained that advantage and how Agri-Cover went about achieving it in detail in the big Lomax review. The Extang Encore is a good cover, but it uses the same FRP (plastic) cover material as the OEM and Solid-Fold 2, both of which have well documented leaking issues and valleys that develop over time where water pools.
EDIT: Upon further searching, It looks like "Snifferpro" has a lot of relatively recent posts and detailed comments on the Extang Encore, including a positive experience of several years. This seems consistent with the other members who have posted reviews of this unit. It also looks like the available trunk opening is about the same as my other leading contender, the Lomax. I acknowledge there may be potential leak concerns but leaks between panels and pooling don't seem to be mentioned as a reported problem with the Encore, at least as far as I can find. Using the caulking on the front valleys and weatherstripping on the front edge looks to be a good way to keep water at bay. Plus I get the stiffer panels, front opening/locking panel, and very easy removal for large loads.

So unless there are folks who have had this unit a d can report first hand problems, I think I'm going to order the Extang Encore.

Really appreciate the detailed reviews and comments on all these options. Very helpful in working through the many options...
 

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EDIT: Upon further searching, It looks like "Snifferpro" has a lot of relatively recent posts and detailed comments on the Extang Encore, including a positive experience of several years. This seems consistent with the other members who have posted reviews of this unit. It also looks like the available trunk opening is about the same as my other leading contender, the Lomax. I acknowledge there may be potential leak concerns but leaks between panels and pooling don't seem to be mentioned as a reported problem with the Encore, at least as far as I can find. Using the caulking on the front valleys and weatherstripping on the front edge looks to be a good way to keep water at bay. Plus I get the stiffer panels, front opening/locking panel, and very easy removal for large loads.

So unless there are folks who have had this unit a d can report first hand problems, I think I'm going to order the Extang Encore.

Really appreciate the detailed reviews and comments on all these options. Very helpful in working through the many options...
I'll add to the positive outlook by saying that I can't recall any more than one person reporting leaking problems with the Encore. Until recently, very few members had reported even purchasing that model. It was one of the very first to buy it who encountered some leaking problems in roughly the 2017 timeframe. You will probably find it earlier here in the aftermarket tonneau thread. I believe he posted his own thread as well. Sorry I don't recall the member name. But the Encore has been refreshed since then, and perhaps Extang uses a higher grade FRP for the Encore now than it did then. Who knows? I only meant to warn users about this potential flaw, not testify to it. What I've come to realize over time is that the manufacturers are paying attention to some of the things we say. Sometimes they make slipstream changes that aren't announced.
 
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We were down to choosing between the Encore and Xceed and currently have an Xceed coming our way, so we can give an initial report in the next couple of weeks or so. We also have four Trifecta Signature covers, one has the serial number cut out, one has X's painted on it and the other two have not been altered, but all will be probably heading for the dump. Kind of a shame.

Bill
 

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Here are a few pictures of my filthy RTL-E '18 with Bed Rug, Diamondback SE and a Loading Zone Cargo Gate. The Bed Rug needs to settle down a bit more for the Cargo Gate to sit properly, but it's doing the job now.
To be honest, I'm not sure if the DB is going to fit all of my needs. It's a great top, but I haven't tested how easy/hard it is going to be sliding my bike inside. I kind of wish the first opening was pushed back (towards the front of the truck) more and the 2nd door was smaller, but then I also wish they made the 270 for the Honda.
The trunk opens completely with the back flap open and with it all closed the trunk opens a fair amount.
The locks are easy to use and the mechanism seems very solid.
The tailgate opens and closes in either direction with the cover closed. After a bunch of snow and car wash (hard to believe I know) I haven't found a drop of water in the bed. That wasn't super important to me, but it is nice.
The Bed Rug is a nice product and was thicker than I thought it would be.
I'm really impressed with the Cargo Gate - it's a very nice product.
Looks great! What is the brand of the cargo gate. That solves my issue of things sliding around.
 

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Looks great! What is the brand of the cargo gate. That solves my issue of things sliding around.
You can also get a ratcheting cargo bar on Amazon for around $20-30 or at Harbor Freight for $15. Put it wherever you want and ratchet it out against the sides to hold it in place.
 

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I am looking at tonneau covers, and looking for some advice. After a fair amount of research, it seems like the Lomax is a good fit for me because of how easy it is to remove, it is pretty watertight, and it preserves bed height under the cover.
But what I am struggling with is that while 80-90% of the time a tonneau will be perfectly fine for my needs, there are times where I may need more useable covered space than a tonneau, which has made me consider a cap. We often go camping or on long road trips where I likely can't fit all my gear under the tonneau or inside the cab. I often bring kayaks, mountain bikes, skis, or other outdoor gear (in addition to camping gear) so all that stuff adds up.

I don't really like the idea of having a hardshell cap on my truck permanently/100% of the time, especially if it is heavy and requires 2 people to remove. My wife has back issues and I don't want her to have to help me install/remove on a whim. I also don't like the idea of having more obstructed rear/side vision all the time. Outside of the bigger trips we take, the tonneau makes much more sense day to day and week to week.

As far as needing more space than a tonneau for covered loads, I think security is a lesser (although still somewhat existent) concern than protection from weather. Something better than just throwing a tarp over things is what I'm thinking of. I've considered using the OEM cargo net but I don't know how compatible it is with the Lomax (or other similar tonneaus) installed. And it won't offer weather protection.

So I'm looking at a few different potential options:
  • I could get a Lomax tonneau (or similar) and due to its ease of removal, remove when needed to put on a lightweight (soft) cap that is fairly easy to install/remove only when I need it? What soft/light cap products might I consider? The only ones I see are Softopper and Fas-top (more on that one next) - so does anyone have experience with the Softopper? Would it be compatible with the Lomax rails which stay in place when the cover is off?
  • I could get a Fas-top, which converts from tonneau to soft cap and that would mean no need for the Lomax. I'm not sure if the tonneau will be as roomy underneath or as nice as the Lomax though. Does anyone have experience with this or know of any similar products?
  • Is there any other product (or combination of products) that I may want to consider here? I'm open to suggestions.
Thanks in advance for your help.
 

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So I'm looking at a few different potential options:
  • I could get a Lomax tonneau (or similar) and due to its ease of removal, remove when needed to put on a lightweight (soft) cap that is fairly easy to install/remove only when I need it? What soft/light cap products might I consider? The only ones I see are Softopper and Fas-top (more on that one next) - so does anyone have experience with the Softopper? Would it be compatible with the Lomax rails which stay in place when the cover is off?
  • I could get a Fas-top, which converts from tonneau to soft cap and that would mean no need for the Lomax. I'm not sure if the tonneau will be as roomy underneath or as nice as the Lomax though. Does anyone have experience with this or know of any similar products?
  • Is there any other product (or combination of products) that I may want to consider here? I'm open to suggestions.
Thanks in advance for your help.
Well, darn it, unfortunately if you had asked for advice before purchasing your Ridgeline, I probably would have suggested an SUV with a roof rack. But since you do now own a Ridgeline, looking at your options, I think I would suggest the Fas-top, (intriguing, if it works as well as it is advertised), and a roof rack.

Good luck!

Bill
 

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Well, darn it, unfortunately if you had asked for advice before purchasing your Ridgeline, I probably would have suggested an SUV with a roof rack. But since you do now own a Ridgeline, looking at your options, I think I would suggest the Fas-top, (if it is a good as it is advertised), and a roof rack.

Good luck!

Bill

Ha, so the reason I steered towards the Ridgeline vs. an SUV (which is what I previously owned) is the ability to throw in all sorts of Home Depot materials, dirty gear, mulch, gardening stuff, what have you, without mucking up the interior. I beat the crap out of the interior of my Subaru Forester, liked the bigger towing capacity of the Ridgeline (we're looking to get a small camper trailer in a year or two), without feeling like a monstrous full-size truck or large SUV. The Ridgeline just seems way more versatile and without the limits of a tonneau cover, could hold larger cargo than, say, a Pilot or Passport. I guess I'm preaching to the choir though...

Anyway, I plan to put a roof rack on my Ridgeline, I have a hitch bike rack and plan to get a Kuat Pivot so that it can swing away for access to the bed when needed (but those are on backorder right now). And I will probably get that Yakima StrongArm (?) for swapping out on the hitch if I ever need to carry my long canoe. What to do about the bed so that I can have some versatility in cargo back there is what I am wrestling with now.

Thanks for your feedback, Bill!
 

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@snackyd

I can get just about all of them for you and just sold a member on here the Lomax and it’s a good cover. Feel free to call or message me directly and I’ll go over any other questions.
 
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