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I am consider purchasing a CalMark Cover for my Elite II for use in future winters.

I went to their web site and they did not list Oliver Elite II trailers but listed those other fiberglass trailer manufacture's. 

Has anyone purchased the CalMark cover for an Elite II?

How is their quality?

Any idea on what they cost?

2018 Oliver Elite II, Hull #354

2018 RAM 1500 Rebel 4 x 4, 5.7 Hemi

 

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Dewdev - 

Use the Search function for a number of threads about CalMark covers.

CalMark does have the measurements for multiple Elite II Olivers - I'm not sure about the Elite I though.

There are a fair number of owners that use this cover and it is highly unlikely that you will find a better cover on the market.

Last I heard the cost of these covers is getting close to $1,000 - ouch 😳

Bill

2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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Yes, we have the Calmark cover.   Calmark does have the pattern for the Elite II, with a zipper opening to allow access to the door.  Very happy with it.  But it’s not cheap, and it’s a huge, heavy cover.  It takes two of us to get it up and over the Oliver.  Prices have probably gone up a bit since we bought ours but you will be at around $1,000, maybe more, with shipping costs.   It’s done well through two winters so far, though I do wish it had zippered or Velcro closure panels for access to the battery compartment and the shore power connection.  

E480BF71-F33F-4AEF-9F19-97BF73DDC4E5.jpeg

Edited by FrankC
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2019 Oliver Legacy Elite II - Hull #461

Tow Vehicles:

Primary - 2019 Ford F-250

Backup - 2019 Nissan Armada 

 

ALARCODEINKSKYMONMNYNCOHOKPATNTXUTVAWVxlg.jpg.bc136094bef415679018eafd8d4046ad.jpg

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Dewdev - I just got a quote from Calmark and it was $1280 plus shipping.  They are also switching fabrics from Sunbrella to Weathermax.  Weathermax has different properties and is a considerably less expensive compared to Sunbrella.  It's lighter and offers better waterproofing but it may not provide the same UV protection as Sunbrella.  

I remember seeing a quote on the forum similar to mine ($1280) but it was for Sunbrella.  The cost of the cover has gone way up for sure.  From what I've read, Weathermax is about 33% cheaper than Sunbrella.  

Maybe Sherry (Seadawg) has some insight into pros and cons of Weathermax.  I know Sunbrella from center console boats I owned and it was a superior material if properly cared for.  

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2021 Elite 2 Hull # 832 "Bucket List"

2021 F250 7.3L Gas / 4.30 AR

MENHNYPATNVAsm.jpg

 

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I don't have any  covers that are weathermax on either boat. We always specify Sunbrella, in the color dubonnet, for the sailboat, navy for the power boat. Both colors hold up really well, block uv,  breathe well, and last. So, less mildew, etc, on sails, etc. But chafe points with Sunbrella have to be reinforced.  I've already had to take the mainsail cover in for a lot of reinforcement,  three years in. That said, last cover lasted maybe 15 to 18 years? With proper reinforcement. 

The dinghy cover may, or may not, be weathermax. We didn't specify, but it feels like it. It's much lighter, and at 4 years, is doing fine. It's a very different  "feel" or "hand" than Sunbrella. We bought a cover online, instead of using our regular guy. It's just a dinghy, doesn't always sit outside, after all.

Weathermax isn't a new fabric. I suspect Calmark did a LOT of research before making the switch. From my research, it's a bit lighter than Sunbrella (14 or 15 per cent), more abrasion resistant, maybe more waterproof in the long haul. UV resistance is dependent on color. My concern, in Florida,  is breathability,  where I'm sure Sunbrella wins. From what I've read,  weathermax 80 is more stain resistant.  But, harder to sew.  Both are solution dyed, meaning the yarns have color, before they ever becomes fabric. I look for this, even for patio chair cushions.

Tradeoffs everywhere.

Based on my experience with marine cover prices, Calmark is actually, sadly, kind of  a bargain. It takes a LOT of fabric to cover an Oliver.  And, a really big factor is labor, not fabric. And, of course, user satisfaction, in the long run.

For your reading enjoyment:

https://www.practical-sailor.com/sails-rigging-deckgear/functional-fabrics

I  do appreciate the look back, though. We just had a new cover made for the cockpit of the power boat. When it comes time for the bow area cover, I'll have another look.

 

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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, Jairon said:

$1280 was my quote for Sunbrella. I passed. Wax on, Wax off.

I'm with you there. We wax twice a year, anyway. 

3m ultra marine may be $20 a small can, but it's good for two seasons or more.

Edited by SeaDawg
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2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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12 hours ago, SeaDawg said:

I'm with you there. We wax twice a year, anyway. 

3m ultra marine may be $20 a small can, but it's good for two seasons or more.

I agree with waxing. Not to derail this post, but where can I purchase the 3m ultra marine wax? I have had no luck with my web search thus far. Thank you!

Edited by Patriot

2020 Ford F-250 6.7 liter Powerstroke Lariat Ultimate “Tremor” High Cap tow pkg  - 2020 OLEII - Hull #634 

 

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Posted (edited)

Patriot:

I was suprised I could not find it on West Marine.

Try Google to find the 3M Ultra Marinewax.

Amazon was one of the hits I saw.

I like Meguairs Flagship premium cleaner wax as well. They also have their regular Meguiars wax. Used them on my  sportfishing boat for years.

https://www.meguiarsdirect.com/meguiars-flagship-premium-cleaner-wax-32oz.html

 

 

Edited by dewdev
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2018 Oliver Elite II, Hull #354

2018 RAM 1500 Rebel 4 x 4, 5.7 Hemi

 

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15 hours ago, connor77 said:

Dewdev - I just got a quote from Calmark and it was $1280 plus shipping.  They are also switching fabrics from Sunbrella to Weathermax.  Weathermax has different properties and is a considerably less expensive compared to Sunbrella.  It's lighter and offers better waterproofing but it may not provide the same UV protection as Sunbrella.  

I remember seeing a quote on the forum similar to mine ($1280) but it was for Sunbrella.  The cost of the cover has gone way up for sure.  From what I've read, Weathermax is about 33% cheaper than Sunbrella.  

Maybe Sherry (Seadawg) has some insight into pros and cons of Weathermax.  I know Sunbrella from center console boats I owned and it was a superior material if properly cared for.  

Connor77 - thanks fo the info on the different fabric now used by Calmark, I did not know this. I had a similar quote on the Calmark for $1200 shipped to our door last year. They kindly took my call, but at the time they were closed down due to the pandemic. I ended up finding a used 2019 Calmark for a reasonable price right here on the forum. When I received it, I washed it with as it hung off our deck and then naturally let it dry. They are nice covers, but heavy for sure. With the relatively short winters here we did not use it on our Ollie this season. I am planning to hang onto it.
- Patriot

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2020 Ford F-250 6.7 liter Powerstroke Lariat Ultimate “Tremor” High Cap tow pkg  - 2020 OLEII - Hull #634 

 

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I can remember back some years ago when I owned by 34 foot Luhrs sportfisherman boat installing a cover on the boat in the fall. I had a plastic coated tarp similiar to the tarps that tuckers use. It was lighter than canvas covers but it was still very heavy and took 2 people to install with a lot of effort. I can not imagine trying to install a Sunbrella or Weathermax Calmark cover now that I am older and then have to worry about not damaging the solar collector and the antennas.

I am hoping waxing the Ollie in the spring and fall (before winter sets in) will be sufficient. My fall back position is to install one of those temporary sheds that have the hoops with the rounded top that supports some type of cloth membrane (i think it is some type of plastic). 

Thoughts and comments would be appreciated!!!

2018 Oliver Elite II, Hull #354

2018 RAM 1500 Rebel 4 x 4, 5.7 Hemi

 

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14 hours ago, Patriot said:

I agree with waxing. Not to derail this post, but where can I purchase the 3m ultra marine wax? I have had no luck with my web search thus far. Thank you!

I don't know what's going on with the 3m supply. Used to buy it at West Marine or Amazon. One can lasts two years or so.

Paul is switching to Collinite paste wax, also highly rated, but more difficult to apply.  Also high carnuba content. 

 

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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19 hours ago, FrankC said:

 I do wish it had zippered or Velcro closure panels for access to the battery compartment and the shore power connection.  

That is a fairly major  design flaw, have you mentioned it to their customer service? A local tent/ awning or upholstery shop should be able to fix that for not too much cash. You would need to accurately mark the location with a Sharpie, so there is no chance of cutting the wrong spot.

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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I used all the standard waxes over the years on cars, motorcycles, etc, but I’ve become a big fan of the newer “ceramic” waxes available.   I used the Meguiar’s Hybrid Ceramic Wax spray wax this past fall and it’s great.  Sprayed on while the surface is still wet from rinsing after a wash.  Then dry with a microfiber towel.  Really creates a very slick tough coating.  

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2019 Oliver Legacy Elite II - Hull #461

Tow Vehicles:

Primary - 2019 Ford F-250

Backup - 2019 Nissan Armada 

 

ALARCODEINKSKYMONMNYNCOHOKPATNTXUTVAWVxlg.jpg.bc136094bef415679018eafd8d4046ad.jpg

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1 minute ago, John E Davies said:

That is a fairly major  design flaw, have you mentioned it to their customer service?

I do not believe that this is correct - at least not for when I purchased my CalMark cover five years ago.  IF I had wished to have a "port" or "zippered flap" or "door" or "access panel" for the purposes of battery maintenance or electrical connection, I could have asked for it to be sewn in.  We did discuss sewing in clear panels in the top of the cover for purposes of allowing the solar panels to "see" the sun but CalMark convinced me that it would not be a good idea.  As far as battery maintenance - as long as I loosen the draw cord at the bottom of the cover, I have no problem getting under the cover, opening the battery door and sliding out the batteries.  Besides not incurring the extra expense of having the access door installed in the cover, I don't have to worry about possible chafing of the zippers on the finish of the Oliver either.

Bill

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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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5 minutes ago, John E Davies said:

That is a fairly major  design flaw, have you mentioned it to their customer service? A local tent/ awning or upholstery shop should be able to fix that for not too much cash. You would need to accurately mark the location with a Sharpie, so there is no chance of cutting the wrong spot.

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

I haven’t given any feedback to Calmark yet.  I will probably do that this spring once I can get out and take a few detailed pictures to send to them.   And I’m sure that’ll push their price up even more for future buyers.  I may modify mine at some point.   But for now it’s workable, just something that could be improved.  

2019 Oliver Legacy Elite II - Hull #461

Tow Vehicles:

Primary - 2019 Ford F-250

Backup - 2019 Nissan Armada 

 

ALARCODEINKSKYMONMNYNCOHOKPATNTXUTVAWVxlg.jpg.bc136094bef415679018eafd8d4046ad.jpg

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2 hours ago, John E Davies said:

A local tent/ awning or upholstery shop should be able to fix that for not too much cash. You would need to accurately mark the location with a Sharpie, so there is no chance of cutting the wrong spot.

I normally use tailor's chalk for repairs and modifications 

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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8 hours ago, SeaDawg said:

I normally use tailor's chalk for repairs and modifications 

He will need something that will stay on when he washes the cover, before taking it to get altered. That is the main reason I suggested a Sharpie. 
 

John Davies

Spokane WA

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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  • 6 months later...

Does anyone who uses the Calmark cover for their Oliver use a suitcase solar panel to maintain the batteries  while under cover? If so, could you please describe the type/kind size of solar. Or, for those people who don’t use solar while under cover, could you please describe how you maintain your batteries? Thanks. 
David

Kim and David Thompson Nomads' Nest 2018 LE2 #366 2018 Toyota Tundra, 4x4, 5.7L


http://visitedstatesmap.com/image/INKYMINCTNlg.jpg
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4 minutes ago, thompsonkd said:

Does anyone who uses the Calmark cover for their Oliver use a suitcase solar panel to maintain the batteries  while under cover?

I store my Ollie at a storage yard that does not have electric or water.  Obviously, with the Calmark cover on the solar panels do not work.  So, in order to maintain the batteries over the winter (or while covered) I use a 25 watt panel plugged into the Ollie's pigtail (the connection usually used to connect to the tow vehicle).  For the past four years this arrangement has work like a charm with the batteries always being at full charge.

Bill

P1020092.JPG

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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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We use our fixed solar to charge our batteries.  If I had a cover, I would do exactly what Bill does.

No one is likely to steal a small 25 watt panel. A suitcase solar, hmmm, another story . Too expensive to leave lying about.

2008 Ram 1500 4 × 4

2008 Oliver Elite, Hull #12
 

 

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Thanks for the reply’s. I was wondering Bill, why you don’t plug the solar panel into the Zamp plug on the side of the Oliver? Would you mind posting a picture of exactly how you plug in your panel? I assume there would be no modifications to the electrical system when using the panel? Thanks. 

Kim and David Thompson Nomads' Nest 2018 LE2 #366 2018 Toyota Tundra, 4x4, 5.7L


http://visitedstatesmap.com/image/INKYMINCTNlg.jpg
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FYI any small shadowed portion of a solar panel will drastically reduce the current output. Something like a large leaf is big enough…. So the receptacle and cable on Bill’s unit should theoretically and ideally be located on the underside, not on top as shown in that picture. If the panel has a full exposure during the day it doesn’t matter, but in winter with short days and a limited exposure due to trees or buildings, it might matter. OTH if the battery charging has been satisfactory…. never mind.

I am making an assumption that it is screwed into the frame there and not just propped up for the photo….

John Davies

Spokane WA

 

EC76F742-DB4E-4541-A7F1-C3DF2A12EC04.jpeg

"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

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OK - 

first question - because on my 2016 Elite II there is no Zamp plug on the side of the Oliver.

second question - if you look at the top left hand corner of the picture above, you can see the "pigtail plug" that I mentioned ( like THIS ONE ).

third question - you simply wire the panel to this "pigtail plug" and then plug your Oliver 7 pin "pigtail" into it just as you would plug it into your tow vehicle while towing.

You assume correctly - the charging of your batteries from your tow vehicle is wired directly from your tow vehicle to your batteries.  Therefore, when using a solar panel wired in this way, you are charging the batteries directly from the solar panels in exactly the same manner as you do when driving down the road except that the charge is coming from the solar panel and not the tow vehicle.  Note that to be on the safe side you should have a charge controller on this "storage" solar panel, however, most of the ones of this size already do have a charge controller that comes with the panel.  Also note that given the size of this 25 watt panel, it will have a hard time bringing 4 lead acid batteries back up to a full charge (particularly during the winter months).  So, I always make sure that my batteries are fully charged prior to placing the Ollie in storage.  Of course you could always simply get a larger panel(s) but that involves more money and (as SeaDawg points out) a greater chance of those panels "walking away".

Bill

2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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JD - 

The "pigtail" receptacle shown in the picture is only resting there for purposes of showing it in the picture.  Actually, it is connected to about 4 feet of wire which makes it easier to connect it to the Ollie's pigtail and to place the entire connection under the Calmark cover to protect it from rain, snow, etc.

Two additional side notes on the panel's construction in the picture above- 

1.  I used an old camera tripod to mount the solar panel in order to be able to point the panel more directly towards the winter sun and to shed snow, leaves, etc. from the face of the panels.

2.  The yellow "ropes" that can be seen at the bottom of the tripod are used to secure the assembly to the ground - I use 15 inch spikes through the rope and driven all the way into the ground.  This not only prevents the assembly from tipping over in a strong wind but also in making sure the panels don't "walk away".  Note that the knots on nylon rope around the tripod legs have been "heat treated" (i.e. melted) so that they are not easily undone.  Of course a decent knife could be used to cut those in short order but enough is enough and the storage facility would probably have pictures of any attempts of this nature.

Bill

P1020093.JPG

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2017 Ford F150 Lariat 3.5EB FX4 Max Towing 2016 Oliver Elite II - Hull #117 "Twist"

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