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Old 12-09-2019, 05:47 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by The Armadillo View Post
Hello Everyone -

This is the latest version of the Aerocap that I am working on for my truck. It consists of steel frame which is covered by a nylon/ canvas type material. The steel frame folds up similar to how a car's convertible top works and this Aerocap goes from "open" to "closed" in seconds. In the open position I have full access to the truck bed and I can load large items. This Aerocap can be completely disassembled and stored in a corner of the garage. It takes about 15 to 20 minutes to assemble/disassemble this Aerocap and it weighs roughly 40 or 50 pounds. I will be building a new version of this Aerocap soon as I would like to make some changes to the linkages of the steel frame and use a thicker, convertible type material for the top. I want to make sure the material is pulled tighter and the wrinkles are removed.

Here is a picture of the Aerocap closed:



I would like to get any feedback from you guys (and girls) and any suggestions would be appreciated. Any thoughts on the aerodynamics of flexible materials, such as nylon canvas and convertible top material?

More pictures and info to come....
tooo much blind spots

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Old 12-16-2019, 09:33 AM   #32 (permalink)
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Great engineering. It will be interesting to see how it holds up under snow loads.

This is a fantastic concept. People buy trucks to haul things (occasionally). Most of the time most pickups are used as commuter cars. This would allow full use of the bed while improving highway mpg the rest of the time.

Perhaps v. II could have a small vinyl window below the third brake light.
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The power needed to push an object through a fluid increases as the cube of the velocity. Mechanical friction increases as the square, so increasing speed requires progressively more power.
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Old 12-18-2019, 07:28 PM   #33 (permalink)
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With my 1985 Toyota Celica convertible, I noticed that my factory cloth top would "inflate" at speed even though the top was tight with support bows under the top. Just something to keep in mind.
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Old 12-18-2019, 09:37 PM   #34 (permalink)
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Hey, late to the game here, sorry about that. This looks great!!!! I appreciate you keeping it 6 inches or so off the tail gate in the back and not having been tempted to land right at the top. Here's something you I think will like, a lot. You could raise the back up another 4 to 6 inches creating more room under cap, and, it will lower the lift coefficient to make the truck even more stable at speed. In the winter icy driving conditions, you'll really notice the planted feel your truck will have. The higher rear panel will not affect the drag at all. These things I say are based THIS ARTICLE. Hope this helps.
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Old 12-19-2019, 04:42 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Have you measured what impact this has on fuel economy?
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Old 12-19-2019, 05:46 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Armadillo - belated welcome to the forum - great project!!


Acquaintances of mine have a boat canvas business.



Years ago (though not as long back as botsapper's thread) we brainstormed about doing something similar. They had the benefit of years of manufacturing folding frames and sewing taut tops to fit perfectly. They also regularly added clear plastic for windows (optional).



I suggested making a prototype for the most popular truck at the time, A-B-A testing it for MPG benefit, and posting the results online. They could have put together a kit (or gave away instructions for making the frame), and then sold the UV-resistant Sunbrella covering.



Ultimately I guess I wasn't persuasive enough! Nice to see someone finally do it.
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Old 12-19-2019, 05:48 PM   #37 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tahoe_Hybrid View Post
tooo much blind spots

Not a problem. Order the optional plastic window / digital camera package.
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Old 12-19-2019, 07:24 PM   #38 (permalink)
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Lightweight 'alu-mini-um' roller shutter

Last edited by botsapper; 12-20-2019 at 01:30 PM..
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Old 12-20-2019, 11:35 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Nice design. Curious to hear what impact this has on your mileage?
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Old 01-29-2020, 11:24 AM   #40 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Nice design. Curious to hear what impact this has on your mileage?
OP. Do you have any numbers to post from a regular commute to give before and after mpg?

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