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Marten's box

 
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Old 03-30-2017, 08:09 PM
Marten
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Marten's box

So I thought I would start a box build thread of my own. I have decided to build a bed from scratch. After much discussion and opinions I thought what the heck could go wrong here anyway. I am not a welder or anything like that so this is all new to me. Did some reading, asked some questions and hoping for the best. So first was the list of what I wanted to change or dislike. I wanted to get rid of the stake pocket holes. Wanted the bottom of the stake pockets rounded off. The front panel of my existing box is bent to bad to fix so a new one was required. Was missing a couple of the cross braces as well. The way the stake pockets are attached to the box sides I did not like as well. So measured up the existing box and ordered some steel up. First step was to build a framework for the new box. This make take some time to finish as I don't seem to have as much time as I was hoping for. That and my job is physically demanding and the recovery time is getting longer, old age I am told.





The three cross members are made of 14 ga steel that I had bent up into a "U". The two side pieces are 14 ga bent into a "L" Everything is just screwed together at this point until I am sure it will stay. Used the existing metal strips to make sure the bracing is in the right location. That will be changed to stainless after the box is ready. For the front three pieces I took some 14 ga and welded it to the bottom with a bolt welded to it. That is going to be bolted the frame later using some angle iron. In the picture it is tacked in place. Will be fully welded. Bolts are long enough that I can put a piece of rubber isolation between the frame and the box bracing as well.





The back is a piece of 2 x 4 tube. I cut out part of the bottom to allow me to bolt the boards to it. It will also not collect any water in there. I welded on some small angle to allow me to bolt it to the frame as well.













While doing that I wanted to see if I could make my own stake pockets with the rounded bottoms. So ordered up the steel, 16 ga. and had it bent to the same size as original. Then using a paint can came up with a radius I was happy with. Some cutting and then using my plumbing torch heated up the steel and slowly bent it. Welded it on the inside, grinding to get the radius back and now I had one pocket. Repeat three more times.





some of the steel was primed using epoxy primer first, some after some fab work depending on what I was doing. Wanted to get as much primer covering steel as possible.
Sorry about the picture sizing. Most of these are from my phone but the one big one is from my camera and I can't seem to figure out how to make that one smaller.
 
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Old 03-30-2017, 08:54 PM
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You are doing good work Marten.
Making your own stake pockets - impressive.

Keep us posted on the progress, and I'm interested in seeing what ideas you have for a tailgate.
Tom
 
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Old 03-31-2017, 09:43 AM
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Very nice work! How did you cut out the bottom of the rear crossmember? Do you have a plasma torch? You have steadier hands than me if so!
 
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Old 03-31-2017, 07:05 PM
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Originally Posted by pineconeford View Post
You are doing good work Marten.
Making your own stake pockets - impressive.

Keep us posted on the progress, and I'm interested in seeing what ideas you have for a tailgate.
Tom
Thanks Tom. Nice to get some feed back here. I am on an Ontario hot rodders forum and there is not a lot of feed back there. I have some ideas for the tailgate as I will be building it myself as well. What I would like to find is a couple of stainless steel 1/2"-3/4" bolts but with round heads. Want to use that as a base for making the hinges.
this may be a bit of a slower build then some guys here as I am self employed and that and family always takes priority over hobbies.
 
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Old 03-31-2017, 07:11 PM
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Originally Posted by ALBUQ F-1 View Post
Very nice work! How did you cut out the bottom of the rear crossmember? Do you have a plasma torch? You have steadier hands than me if so!
Hi Ross and thanks.
What I did for that was figure out where I wanted the holes as they had to line up with the bolts for the boards first. Then took a 1" hole saw and drilled the ends of the holes out. From there drew straight lines and cut out the rest using my mini grinder. The blade I bought is amazing. It is a new blade from Lennox. It is a diamond edge blade designed for cutting steel and other metals. It says it cuts alum. but I tried it and does not work well, gums up with melted alum. These blades hold up much better then the stone ones you buy otherwise. Then just a steady hand, practice for sure. But I have been a carpenter for over 35 years so lots of hand eye coordination practice.
 
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Old 03-31-2017, 08:49 PM
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Very nice work Marten, I don't recall any one making stake pockets, (I'm sure they have I just don't recall). Anyway yours are very impressive, along with the rest of what you have posted. Thanks for sharing your work, we love pics.
 
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Old 03-31-2017, 09:03 PM
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Nice work!!!
 
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Old 04-01-2017, 02:10 AM
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Looks great! You obviously have a steady hand. FTE software resizes the pictures so they are great on this end. Keep 'em coming.
 
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Old 04-12-2017, 07:08 PM
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After welding up the stake pockets and talking to a couple of people someone suggested that if I weld the pockets the way there are, there is a good chance they will warp. So I cut some steel, primed it and welded it inside. Did the front two only as the back ones will also have the tailgate hinges and locks in the same area. Might need some reinforcement for that stuff.







Onto the bed sides next. I ordered up some steel, 16 ga for the sides as well. Had it bent to the same profile as the existing box. I don't like the way the original box had the filler panels at the bottom so I ordered it the same width as the overall original. Also got some tube sections to make the round at the top of the box as that is what others have done as well. Then took an angle iron and clamped it on as a straight edge. Cut a small groove in the tube part way through. Then took one side of the cut and ground a flat section on it to allow the steel plate from the sides to nest in it. Does that make sense to you? Picture is not real clear but hoping you get the idea.





Cleaned both parts and then epoxy primed them. Sanded off the primer in the area where I am going to weld. Then clamped and started spot welding. Started about 4" between spots, then did in between that and so forth until I had one continues row of welding. That was to prevent anything from warping. Ground down the weld afterwards until it looked just like the original box. Then reprimed it.









To be sure I was doing things right I took the panels out to the guy that sold me the metal conditioner and primer to review. This guy grew up in a body shop as his dad owned it. He did not want to be a body guy so instead opened up a supply company and did some body work on the side. He was very impressed with the quality of the work I have done so far. If you look at some of the pictures there are a few challenges with my shop. It was set up to be a woodworking shop. Because of that and in order to keep it cleaner, it has Race Deck flooring. This is a plastic product so I need to cover it to do any welding. Cutting and grinding happen outside only or I would burn the place down. The table saw is covered in old plywood to use as a work surface as well. And with the truck inside it is very crowded. But I have to work with what I have.
 
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Old 04-12-2017, 10:18 PM
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Rear sill looks a lot like mine, that 2x4 rectangular tubing really stiffens up the bed.
 
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Old 04-13-2017, 04:33 AM
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Originally Posted by CharlieLed View Post
Rear sill looks a lot like mine, that 2x4 rectangular tubing really stiffens up the bed.
Yes, over time that becomes a weak spot. Did you add drain holes somewhere Charlie since the bottom is now closed but the top still open?
 
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Old 04-13-2017, 11:31 AM
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Good point Pete...since my truck has been lowered I had to raise the floor of the bed. The way that I did this was to fabricate a 2 inch high frame and weld it in place in the bed. There are no holes in the sill since there are no bolts that attach to it. That said, there is a drain hole on each side in the forward facing edge of the sill. This pic gives a better view.
 
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Old 04-13-2017, 04:27 PM
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Lookin' real good Marten.
 
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Old 04-13-2017, 05:26 PM
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Originally Posted by CharlieLed View Post
Good point Pete...since my truck has been lowered I had to raise the floor of the bed. The way that I did this was to fabricate a 2 inch high frame and weld it in place in the bed. There are no holes in the sill since there are no bolts that attach to it. That said, there is a drain hole on each side in the forward facing edge of the sill. This pic gives a better view.
Nice work. But are two holes enough? Usually you need holes at either end as vehicles rarely sit on the level when it rains. Just my 2 cents . . . Sorry . . . It really does look great.
 
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Old 04-13-2017, 06:43 PM
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Being as I live in the desert southwest I am not to concerned about rain water collecting. That, and the fact that the metal is 0.125 wall steel, I don't think that the sill will disappear in my lifetime. I do like to slosh a liberal amount of KBS Rust Seal around the inside of any metal pieces that I use prior welding them up to get a head start on any corrosion.
 

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