Fiberglass vs aluminium canopy

Submitted: Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 16:37
ThreadID: 100705 Views:12539 Replies:4 FollowUps:12
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Hi all
Tossing up about getting a new canopy for the 'lux, and looking at fiberglass vs aluminum for the construction. This would be a full height canopy to go on the existing tray.

I see on old posts that people have wondered about the strength of the fiberglass canopies when bolting things on to the canopy (wouldn't be putting on anything heavy like a spare wheel though). Can anyone advise on the strength of the modern fiberglass?

Also, are there any problems with how long fiberglass lasts in use, and whether it stands up just as well to corrugations as metal constructions?

Cheers, John
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Reply By: mountainman - Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 16:51

Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 16:51
fibreglass canopy to steel tray?

you will never stop having dust issues. or rain.

we done a dual cab patrol, made the tray, and usual fibreglass canopy on the dropsides?
he used foam to seal the dust.

ended up silicon it, and still no good as the drop sides need to be usefull as well.

a good quality steel, ally canopy and quality automotive rubber will beat the fibreglass canopy any day of the week.
AnswerID: 505328

Follow Up By: luxtourer - Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 18:13

Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 18:13
Not that sort of canopy, mountainman. This would be bolted to the tray, just like an ally canopy. The drop sides get left home!

Cheers, John
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Reply By: Bob Y. - Qld - Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 17:10

Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 17:10
John.

We put a fibreglass canopy on the well base tray of an '82 hilux.

Had the vehicle for 4 years with no problems, except for a little dust ingress around the tail gate, and travelled on some ordinary roads around western Qld.

Are currently getting an aluminum canopy built for the tray of our 79 series 'Cruiser. Haven't seen it yet, but like the build of others I've seen. Check out Slide on campers @ hervey Bay. Qld.

Bob.

Seen it all, Done it all.
Can't remember most of it.

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Follow Up By: luxtourer - Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 18:16

Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 18:16
Thanks Bob,
The canopies in their pics look a bit too tall for us, but maybe they make a range of sizes?

Cheers, John
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Follow Up By: Bob Y. - Qld - Monday, Feb 25, 2013 at 17:19

Monday, Feb 25, 2013 at 17:19
John,

Reckon Bob would made a canopy of specific height, depending on your needs.

Most of those on the website have a sleeping compartment, with drawers underneath, hence the extra height. Think ours is 1200mm high.

I might be wrong, but the alloy canopies might be a little lighter than the 'glass ones.

Bob.

Seen it all, Done it all.
Can't remember most of it.

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Follow Up By: luxtourer - Tuesday, Feb 26, 2013 at 17:49

Tuesday, Feb 26, 2013 at 17:49
Thanks Bob
I'll find out just what they can do. Saw one of their canopies this morning, in fact. They look good.
Cheers, John
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Reply By: Member - Wamuranman - Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 19:32

Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 19:32
Hi Luxtourer,

I just made the decision recently you are about to make.
I had my new canopy fitted just 2 days ago.
I decided on fibreglass as its cooler inside than steel or aluminium would be and also cheaper.
I chose the industrial version with ribbed roof for extra strength. The roof racks are rated to carry 300kg. The doors are reinforced double locking.
I have not had in rain yet to test leakages (if any). I don't think the canopy itself will leak...but its how its secured to tray. There is a foam strip under the bottom steel frame so it should be sealed. If not it would not be hard to run some silicon around edge of frame/tray.
I am happy with the end product....heaps of room inside (and mine is the smallest model).
Cheers






AnswerID: 505335

Follow Up By: luxtourer - Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 21:48

Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 21:48
Thanks, Wamuranman
I had wondered whether the fiberglass would be a better insulator.
I'm also intrigued by the appearance of the doors on your canopy, the way they "stick out" from the body. Is that because they are double locking, as I've seen similar pics for aluminium canopies as well, e.g. see here. Obviously advisable to check out the reinforced roof as well.
Hope yours performs as well as it looks.

Cheers, John
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Follow Up By: Member - Wamuranman - Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 21:58

Friday, Feb 22, 2013 at 21:58
John, I think that is how they are made waterproof.
The door opening itself has a lip around the edge...then the door rubber fits over the lip against the body.
I am pretty confident the way the doors are made they will never leak even in wind driven rain. Any water that seeps under rubber can only run down as it can't get over the lip anyway.
Manufacturers make different models ... some stronger than others. I was advised to get the industrial model (tradesmens) for maximum strength. I want to put a tinny up on top eventually (not that it would weigh anywhere near 300kg), But its good to know its rated at that. You can stand on top of canopy without problem.

Cheers
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Follow Up By: Burnt Damper - Sunday, Feb 24, 2013 at 21:02

Sunday, Feb 24, 2013 at 21:02
I don't know wether it has been pointed out but the canopy Wamuranman has is made in Brisbane by a company called 3XM. They are an excellent canopy, you can actually order a canopy with a new tray to if you like.(they supply both together ) I travelled with a mate up to the Cape last year and he had one, could not fault it. I have had one custom made in checkerplate by a company called Tong Box in Brisbane ( no its not imported ) mid last year. Complete one piece aluminium floor which I put rubber between it and my tray, roof rack with rollers which I put my tinny, fuel etc up top on plus they made 2 internal brackets to carry the wheels for my fold up trailer, vent at front, doors either side which don't suck in dust. $4000.00. Yep $4000.00 no one else could come within $2000.00 of their price. My tray was not a regular size it was a bit wider that's what got me to see these people in the first place, they are great. I left Brisbane July last year been to the Cape all through the National parks up there for 3 months then the Gulf, then Daly River now at Darwin still no troubles at all 25,000km.
Hope this is of some help mate .
Cheers. Geordie
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Follow Up By: luxtourer - Sunday, Feb 24, 2013 at 21:57

Sunday, Feb 24, 2013 at 21:57
Thanks Geordie (and Wamuranman)

Yes I had seen that it was a 3XM canopy, the only point that makes me hesitate is their height above the tray (as Wamuranman's pic shows). Must be a bit of extra wind resistance there.
Hadn't heard of Tong Box, so looks like we need a trip to Brisbane to check all these options out.
Good to hear both stand up to the rough roads.

Cheers, John
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Follow Up By: Burnt Damper - Sunday, Feb 24, 2013 at 22:34

Sunday, Feb 24, 2013 at 22:34
John.
Just checked Tong website is tongmetal.com.au . They are in Toombul Road Northgate. If you want any photos of mine or whatever just post another note on here and I will supply my email address or mobile number. Cheers Geordie
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Follow Up By: luxtourer - Sunday, Feb 24, 2013 at 23:24

Sunday, Feb 24, 2013 at 23:24
Hi Geordie
A couple of pics of your canopy would be great. To save you trouble, you can send them to this temp email address:
jr dot 9876 at internode dot on dot net (replacing the "dots" and "ats" by the usual symbols, of course).

Thanks, John
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Reply By: Cyberess - Tuesday, Feb 26, 2013 at 16:14

Tuesday, Feb 26, 2013 at 16:14
Just putting one in for the Alloy canopy setup

This setup has been hooked up the central locking system -- Strong enough to stand on the top of and use as a look out, with built in roof rack.








I find the inside of the alloy canopy is easy to work with.


Being alloy silver it reflects heat well, actually I am surprised just how well it does reflects the heat, as I am in Darwin.


Yeah if anyone is interested how this is setup, it's all been documented as a part of my Mahindra Pik-up build-up thread that is on MySwag
"http://www.myswag.org/index.php?topic=17679.0" All the costs etc are there.


Cheers


AnswerID: 505614

Follow Up By: luxtourer - Tuesday, Feb 26, 2013 at 17:54

Tuesday, Feb 26, 2013 at 17:54
Thanks Cyberess
You've certainly put some time and effort into getting that Mahindra rig up and going. A few companies make similar canopies in Brisbane. so there's a bit of choice.

Cheers, John
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Follow Up By: Rockape - Tuesday, Feb 26, 2013 at 18:44

Tuesday, Feb 26, 2013 at 18:44
Cyberess,
very nice.
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