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DavidMCX30 04-25-2011 09:08 PM

Opinions please: Sunbrella or Top Gun for new cover?
A leaking sieve of an original MasterCraft cover led to some issues with my boat over the winter. And now, due to being out of the country for three weeks and some poor planning on my part, I missed out on a covered slip on our lake in Indiana this year. Bummer.

For these reasons, I am investing in a new cover for my 2002 X-30. Per suggestions here, I am looking at We plan on keeping the boat for a good while, so I want to do it right.*

My question is, Sunbrella or Top Gun (with vents)?

Sunbrella: water repellent; highly breathable
Top Gun: highly waterproof; slightly breathable; vents recommended

Price is virtually the same (with vents running $15 extra per pole).

Given my trouble with leakage and the fact I will be without a covered slip this year, I am tempted by "highly waterproof." At the same time, we'll have lots of people/kids in and out of the boat all summer and I want it to be able to air out and dry. Will I get the same drying factor with Top Gun and vents? Will one be lighter and easier to put on and take off for my wife?

Any thoughts on Gore Tenara Seam Threads ... and Waterline vs. Standard fit? Tempted to go with Gore Tenara seam threads for $89 extra and standard fit.*

Thanks for your thoughts!*

Ben 04-25-2011 10:01 PM

+1 for sunbrella. I am acutally getting a new cover now for my 1994. I think it was the original sunbrella cover. It has shrunk a bit, and it starting to leave little black specs inside the boat. New one will be made of sunbrella by local shop.

My cover is black, the boat sits on a hoist w/o canopy. I don't usually bring a lot of water in the boat, but sometimes the floor in the back gets wet. I let it air dry when possible, if really soaked. Typically, I cover it up and go to work. Having said that the person @ the cover place has told me black is good since it "cooks" out the moisture / water. The boat is definitely hot on the inside if I uncover in the afternoon, but one the flip side, it is usually bone dry inside, unless it gets really wet inside and no sun for a few days...

Not sure if black works for you, but I'm having the same thing done again from past success.

edit - forgot to add I have only had water come "through" the cover one time I think, after a ridiculous rain, and I'm sure water puddled neare the back. Again, this is one time on a 17 year old cover. Also - my boat is black on the sides, so I have waterline extensions added, and a platform extension as well to keep the transom platform out of the sun.

azskiking 04-25-2011 11:38 PM

I think Top Gun is a little more abrasive than sunbrella so if you plan to tow with it for sure go with Sunbrella

Miss Rita 04-25-2011 11:46 PM

I got a Top Gun cover from a couple of years ago. I got the waterline cover for winter storage and trailering. It is a quality piece, top notch workmanship. However, I would NOT recommend it for summer protection. It does not breathe at all, and even with vents I don't think your interior will dry out. Get the Sunbrella. I would not recommend the waterline cover for in-water storage, it would be a PITA to put on. I think the waterline cover is best for towing protection and for boats on a raised lift that will catch a lot of sun.

Muttley 04-26-2011 11:25 AM

Sunbrella all the way.

Been in the fabric awning business for 30 years. We've used it on awnings for high end hotels, multi-million dollar house awnings, put it on high end yachts... best stuff out there.

DavidMCX30 04-26-2011 03:21 PM

Based on comments here and a conversation with gentleman at, Sunbrella it is. Thanks!

fentong 04-26-2011 10:29 PM

I bought the Sunbrella waterline cover from Mike at SKIBOATCOVERS last summer and I have NO regrets. It's waterproof, it's light and manageable (even in cold weather) and it looks great. I needed a small alteration done and dropped it off to Mike on good Friday and he had it ready for me to pick up on East Monday on my way back from Chicago to Toronto. Excellent workmanship and top notch customer service.

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