...We wanted to convert a truck tonneau cover from the gas springs that came with the cover to electric motors operated via remote control. All the parts we purchased from Firgelli Automations: we used two 12" stroke actuators, a 2 channel remote control system, and some brackets (MB1) and that was it. This project actually turned out to be very quick and easy; the end result was a key fob which opens and closes the our the tonneau cover with a touch of a button.
First off the actuators were installed in the same location as the gas springs that were there before. If someone wanted to re-create this they could get away with installing 1 actuator in the middle and keeping the existing gas springs to help with the weight, but as a show truck we wanted to add 2 actuators. Please excuse our crude Google sketch-up drawings. First you attach the brackets to the back wall of the truck bed, and the other bracket to the lid of the truck. The key is to make sure that when the actuator is retracted that the lid is in a fully closed position to ensure a tight seal. As your engineers advised, we made sure that the actuator could still easily come to a full retracted position and hit the internal limit switch. Getting the actuator attached after the brackets are mounted was the easy part, however first the bracket needs to be positioned on the lid. The following is how we ended up doing it, and it could save some time for anyone looking to do this:
- We found It's best to attach the bracket to the back of the bed first with the other bracket already attached to the end of the shaft/opposite end
- Then we made sure the actuator is fully retracted and has stopped after reaching the internal limit switch
- We lowered tonneau cover onto the bed, and crawled inside with a flashlight. Then we simply mocked the other bracket up to the underside of the cover and marked the holes of the bracket with a felt.
- Finally the cover was lifted and drilling began. After the holes were drilled the brakes were easily bolted on and the cover was re-lowered onto the bed, where for the last time we crawled in and simply put the clevis pins through the shaft and rearward bracket on the actuators
The wiring was simpler than we anticipated. Both actuators were wired in parallel to the remote control, and the red/black wires from the remote went straight to the battery. These actuators were very easily to operate and install, we are very happy with the level of customer service and support we received from your staff. Thank you Firgelli Automations!
The parts we used include:
- 12" stroke 150 lb force actuator (light duty rod actuator)
- 2CH-REM remote control system (two channel remote control system)