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Old 05-07-2008, 04:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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More Pickup truck Aero

Just a quick and Cheap DIY aeromod for the pickup truck.


This is just a cheap, quick experiment. I already had the plastic. It is attached with clear packaging tape.

The third brake light should still shine through it ok.

I put a strip of wood across the back, just in front of the tailgate, that the plastic attaches to in back, so the tailgate can still open and close. Everywhere else, it is just taped to the truck body.

It is hard to pull the plastic tight with those complex curves. Heat-shrink clear plastic might work a little better.



I think a very light weight wood or aluminum frame supporting and "bulging out" the plastic could work well.

The back of this looks too concave to me.

Your thoughts?

More photos at:
http://web.mac.com/benhdvideoguy/iWeb/Home/S10.html

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Old 05-07-2008, 04:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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framework

Yeah,without the positive curvature coming off the back of the cab,the flow is going to immediately separate and you will not get the full benefit of the cover.
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Old 05-07-2008, 06:22 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I just scored some free greenhouse glazing!

It is fancy clear plastic, about 3/8th inch thick, and pretty ridgid.

Should make a nice material for an AeroCap.


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Old 05-07-2008, 06:23 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Phil's right. But I'd say it's better than nothing, and probably better than just a tonneau.

I'd be interested in seeing a photo of it in action at 55 mph - I wonder how much "inflation" due to pressure differences on either side of the plastic may bring it closer to the ideal shape?
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Old 05-07-2008, 06:25 PM   #5 (permalink)
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You mean in the less than 2 hours since your original post you snagged that glazing? Nice!
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Old 05-07-2008, 07:16 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I put a piece of angle aluminum from the tailgate to the cab and used a speed square to measure the angle.

In the photo, the aluminum is sagging just a little, but accounting for that it looks like the angle is 12 or 13 degrees.

I was also wondering about doing one of those little squared-off windows - which car has that? The Prius?

Just with the plastic stretched over the back of the truck, it really limits rear visibility. It's nice to know who is behind me, especially since the drivers side mirror is not the original (a smaller sized replacement)

If I had just a small plexiglass window on the bottom edge of the aerocap, I would be able to see if someone is directly behind me or not. I am thinking a strip of plexiglass about 4 inches high?

I was also thinking that it would be nice if either the entire cap, or the middle section was easily removable. That would allow me to still load up the motorcycle or pickup landscaping materials, etc.
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Old 05-08-2008, 03:46 PM   #7 (permalink)
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55 MPH Wind Test VIDEO

Hey everyone,

Could you please watch this video and let me know what you think of how the plastic sheeting of "el-cheapo" aerocap reacts to the wind at 55 mph?



It looks to me like the passenger side is right, but the drivers side is too tight and in the middle, it needs to "bulge" up more.

Your thoughts?
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Old 05-09-2008, 02:02 AM   #8 (permalink)
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looks like you need a follower in one of those K cars doing the videotaping!

I can't really tell what's going on with the aerocover from the inside, it all just looks white. Except for your groceries of course
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Old 05-09-2008, 10:52 AM   #9 (permalink)
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As far as I can tell, it's not flapping all over the place the way a tarp over an odd-shaped item can.

It just seems the drivers side is maybe a little too tight and the back is a little too flat. Pretty good otherwise.

It really would take 3 people to videotape this right - me driving the truck, a chase car driver, and a camera operator.

If only I had a wind tunnel!
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Old 05-11-2008, 06:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I took the construction plastic tarp off the truck yesterday so I could haul the cycle off to a hotrod show.

Today, I found a size extra-large "window insulation kit" left-over from last year.

I decided to try that out as a nice, clear, shrink-wrapped version of the contruction plastic tonneau cover.

I spent about half an hour stretching it out, taping it, and heat shrinking with a hairdryer.

As soon as I hit 45 mph on the road, the plastic ripped to tatters!!!!

OK - now I know that window shrink wrap is too thin and brittle to work for this.

Hey, at least now we know!!!!

The way the plastic tore, the side triangular bits stayed on. Looks kinda like a Ridgeline! Not sure if that happened because of the air or because there was some packaging tape reinforcement there.

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Last edited by bennelson; 05-11-2008 at 06:58 PM..
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