Tag Archives: gaylords

Decisions between Gaylord and Undercover Hard Bed Covers

When I wanted a new truck bed cover for my 99 Sierra, I ran across quite a dilemma. Do I save a few bucks and buy the Undercover Tonneau Cover my buddy has? Or, do I blow his truck away with a custom painted truck bed cover from Gaylord’s? The internal struggle was quite wrenching.

A guy at the local truck parts place once told me that I was wasting my cash and time by buying a tonneau cover. His theory was that nobody west of the Rockies needed to cover their bed, because snow was the only thing worth keeping out of the payload. He figured that water would get past a cover anyways, and probably dry out fast. Knowing he was a fool, I bought one anyways—a cheap, soft one. So, when I went through a round of having pieces of my vinyl tonneau stolen about a month later, I returned to grill the same idiot again. After all, if nobody needed one here, and nobody wanted one here, then why was my cover worth treating like a Sprint in the salvage yard? He had no reply, just a stupid grunt.

My next step had two parts: 1. find a new truck parts shop with fewer blowhards (after all, I could just go to Kragen for that kind of entertainment), and 2. Pick a cover without loose, accessible or soft parts that could be picked clean like strands of meat dangling from a hot wing. I arrived at a hard truck bed lid as my best option. They cost considerably more than the vinyl designs, but I discovered that you really get what you pay for. On the flipside of the price tag, they also look many times better and are infinitely more secure—which was now my de-facto area of greatest need.

The first one I looked at was getting a custom Gaylord truck bed cover. There are many brands out there making a truck bed cover in this style: fiberglass construction, gas strut lifts, keyed opening, and custom paint matching. There’s no question that a lid like Gaylord’s makes is quite impressive; the price is just a bit tough to tackle—roughly 6 times higher than the softy cover I was replacing. And, it’s heavy, which means a few drawbacks for hauling a large load. First, you have to lift off the truck after undoing the struts and hinges. It’s a two-man job for certain. Then, there’s finding a place to hang the lid where the paint won’t get jacked up. I had such a place to hang the cover, and a wife who loves to prove she can handle lifting from time to time. All I had to do was get comfortable with the price.

I decided to take a look at my friend’s bed cover. He found his receipt for it so that he could tell me the brand (it was a gift, so he didn’t really know it himself). It was called an Undercover tonneau cover, and it’s much different than the Gaylord’s, despite initial similarities. First, the Undercover wasn’t smoothly painted to match; it was actually kind of rough to the touch. No big deal, I thought, because the black surface would look fine with my dark blue GMC, and it has to cut several bills off the price tag. It’s also not fiberglass, but a lighter plastic material, making removal a one-man gig. That’s another bonus, but it also contributes to the cover looking a little flimsier, and a lot less like a custom, professionally crafted item. The price tag on the Undercover (about half of the Gaylord cover) started to look nicer and nicer.

I thought about how I used my truck, which didn’t provide many answers. While I don’t carry big stuff that often, and my bed isn’t usually full, I do like being able to use my truck like a real truck when I need to. That means not worrying about scratching my lid the way I worry about the rest of the paint. Speaking of paint, I wasn’t sure how I felt about looks. I like to keep my truck sharp, but it’s hardly one of those decked-out rigs with $20K in extra work done that makes you either whip your head around or just shake it. So, a custom painted cover isn’t a must, but it wouldn’t look that bad.

Ultimately, I picked the Gaylord truck bed cover, and I did it for two reasons. First, I couldn’t get the same thing as my buddy has. Second, I was due for a prostate exam later that week, and figured I’d treat myself to the nicer lid if I survived.
Picking between Gaylord truck bed covers and the Undercover tonneau cover was quite a dilemma, but ultimately I ended up happy (and still kind of sore).

Tonneau Covers – What’s with the Frenchy Name?

Back in the beginning of our second conflict with Sadaam and the I-raqis, America decided to rid itself of the French. The word French was replaced by Freedom; Bill O’Reilly led a boycott against French goods. So, how is it that these tonneau covers went untouched and un-renamed? Let’s take a closer look.

I try to steer clear of anything that sounds too fruity, and anything that even whiffs of the French is definitely too fruity for me. But, when I needed a truck bed cover for my Dodge, the one I bought said “tonneau” on the box. I was furious—the nerd at the local truck accessories shop must have known I would have stormed out before buying a frog product and hid the name from me. Anyways, I immediately went back and asked for a refund. What I got was a quick education in truck bed covers.

The guy behind the desk told me that, not only was this “tonneau” not French, it was made by a company called Access right here in America. Apparently, they inherited this wimpy euro name somewhere in the last 15 years, when soft vinyl covers became very popular. A “tonneau”, actually, was the name for the snap cover for the back seat of old cars, like Model Ts and such.

So, how did this name overtake something simple like “bed cover” or “truck bed cover?” Well, it had vinyl, and snaps, so some people couldn’t bother to separate them from a product that stopped appearing with regularity sometime after the Gatsbys of the world disappeared. At least that’s what that dork at the shop told me.

Me, I think it was a conspiracy, put on by the same censoring suits and hippies who back the liberal media conspiracy. Liberals love to spread French words and that hate-America-first, surrender-now attitude. It wouldn’t surprise me if they were trying to soften the truck-owning heart of America with wimpy language and gas-guzzler taxes like a 1-2 punch. If you have a truck bed cover, you’re still an all-American soldier, fighting for the American way. If you have a tonneau cover, though, you’re a weaker, softer drone just waiting for secular progressives to drag you along on their plans to fatten the wallets of New England elites. It’s a subtle word change, but it means so much more.

Right here and now, I’m calling for an extension of the French boycott that covers these fruity “tonneau covers.” From now on, they should be known as truck bed covers or freedom covers. If they’re not marked as such on the box, don’t buy it. Let the truck accessories dealers of America know what they’re supporting when they carry tonneau covers. I called the folks at Access and told them about the cause, and they told me they saw things my way, so I ended up buying one of their fine American covers anyway. They assured me that the name would change before I needed one for my next truck. And, they blacked out the word tonneau anywhere it appeared on the box. It’ll do for now.

There’s a big difference between a truck bed cover by Access and Access tonneau covers: whether or not you’re a true American. – David S. Brooks