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What Can You ACTUALLY Tow? Payload -Tow Capacity

dccarpenter

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You are right on wildbill, I'm in construction and I use the crossbed toolbox on my 2000 Ranger all day long just walking up to the side of the bed.

To get things out of the new stock f350 4x4's with a crossbed box you'd practically have to get in the bed, and I'm saying that standing almost 6'3.

I load cabinets and building materials in and out of the Ranger all the time, it's a breeze. I even often set 2x4's across the bed on the bed rails and set large cabinets on those to increase carrying capacity. I can't imagine doing that on one of the jacked up high trucks.

I've noticed on jobsites that very few people with new full size trucks have crossbed or side toolboxes anymore where they used to be the standard on every work truck, they all have tonneau covers. I suspect this is partly because they can't reach into the toolboxes easily.
 


wildbill23c

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You are right on wildbill, I'm in construction and I use the crossbed toolbox on my 2000 Ranger all day long just walking up to the side of the bed.

To get things out of the new stock f350 4x4's with a crossbed box you'd practically have to get in the bed, and I'm saying that standing almost 6'3.

I load cabinets and building materials in and out of the Ranger all the time, it's a breeze. I even often set 2x4's across the bed on the bed rails and set large cabinets on those to increase carrying capacity. I can't imagine doing that on one of the jacked up high trucks.

I've noticed on jobsites that very few people with new full size trucks have crossbed or side toolboxes anymore where they used to be the standard on every work truck, they all have tonneau covers. I suspect this is partly because they can't reach into the toolboxes easily.
I've been trying to find a camper shell for my 87 Long Bed Ranger, but since those are extremely rare to find, or pretty much destroyed if you do find one, I have decided that I'm going to pickup one of the cross bed toolboxes. In a regular cab Ranger there's no space in the cab for tools if you have to carry a passenger or worse 2, so a cross bed toolbox will probably be on the buy list here very soon. Just need the space to carry some regular tools, plus keep the jack, handle, lug wrench, etc. in there too, nice thing is if I need the full bed for something I can always remove the toolbox fairly quickly and easily, I think they only get bolted to the bedrail with a couple of bolts on each side as much as I hate to drill into the bed rails. Maybe there's a better way, IDK never had one before. My work trucks at the door shop never needed anything like that I just threw the tool bag on the passenger seat or floorboard, until I got the extended cab truck then it went behind the seat.
 

Roert42

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I've been trying to find a camper shell for my 87 Long Bed Ranger, but since those are extremely rare to find, or pretty much destroyed if you do find one, I have decided that I'm going to pickup one of the cross bed toolboxes. In a regular cab Ranger there's no space in the cab for tools if you have to carry a passenger or worse 2, so a cross bed toolbox will probably be on the buy list here very soon. Just need the space to carry some regular tools, plus keep the jack, handle, lug wrench, etc. in there too, nice thing is if I need the full bed for something I can always remove the toolbox fairly quickly and easily, I think they only get bolted to the bedrail with a couple of bolts on each side as much as I hate to drill into the bed rails. Maybe there's a better way, IDK never had one before. My work trucks at the door shop never needed anything like that I just threw the tool bag on the passenger seat or floorboard, until I got the extended cab truck then it went behind the seat.

I have a small Job box that I set in the back of the truck and hold it in place with a strap, couple of 2x4s to keep it off the bulkhead. You can bolt them too the floor, they usually have bolt holes on the feet.
 

dccarpenter

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I spend way too much time thinking and rethinking my truck bed organization. Every rainy day I wish I had a camper shell but the rest of the time I prefer just rolling with the crossbed box. There is a long bed cap near me for $200 in nice shape right now that I'm torn about getting.

I considered putting a job box in like Roert did but it would keep me from sliding countertops , trim and shelving all the way to the front of the bed.

Right now I have a steel crossbed box with the flip up lids that open from each side, I like it but I've been eyeing a $400 weatherguard (new it is $850) deep crossbed box that is at the scratch and dent truck accessory place , it's new with just a few scratches. It is 20" deep so I could pack even more tools in. If I worked by myself I could get by with the smaller box and being organized but my helpers can't seem to ever pack the tool bags or truck neatly.
 

wildbill23c

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I'm just looking at a regular cross bed toolbox, which would eat up almost 2 feet of bed space, but with the regular non-deep style ones you have space under the tool box so I could still slide some stuff under there if I had to, but either way even if I got a deep one I could always take it out if I needed to haul sheet goods or other lumber. I just need something to keep my tools locked up and out of the way and out of the weather.

A camper shell would be nice in the winter as it would add a little weight to the back end of the truck for better traction, but I do like the open bed though, its nice to be able to just toss stuff in, and take stuff out without having to crawl into the bed of the truck for it. Course even if I had a camper shell I could always just take it off in the spring and toss the toolbox in wouldn't mind at all but finding a 7 foot camper shell for a Ranger in my area is pretty next to impossible LOL. They either want a fortune for them, or they're falling apart, broken windows, latches, etc. I keep watching in the pick a part yards though, occasionally I'll find camper shells there and they typically want $75-100 for them. Haven't found a good cross bed toolbox there yet, most are pretty trashed, but I do look, they occasionally have one sitting in the showroom for $100 or less. Trouble is I'd have to figure out how to get the locks replaced so I could keep it locked.
 

TonkaMan

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I've been trying to find a camper shell for my 87 Long Bed Ranger, but since those are extremely rare to find, or pretty much destroyed if you do find one, I have decided that I'm going to pickup one of the cross bed toolboxes. In a regular cab Ranger there's no space in the cab for tools if you have to carry a passenger or worse 2, so a cross bed toolbox will probably be on the buy list here very soon. Just need the space to carry some regular tools, plus keep the jack, handle, lug wrench, etc. in there too, nice thing is if I need the full bed for something I can always remove the toolbox fairly quickly and easily, I think they only get bolted to the bedrail with a couple of bolts on each side as much as I hate to drill into the bed rails. Maybe there's a better way, IDK never had one before. My work trucks at the door shop never needed anything like that I just threw the tool bag on the passenger seat or floorboard, until I got the extended cab truck then it went behind the seat.
There's no need to drill into the bed to mount a cross bed box. I have an aluminum diamond plate box in my 1997 when I don't have the fiberglass cap on it. I run the cap most of the time, but I have the toolbox for when I need to carry large things in the summer months. I hear you on finding a cap for a 7 foot bed. I was able to find a color matched one for my truck, but it was a 10 hour round trip drive to pick it up. Still ended up paying a shop to repaint it, as the clear coat was coming off the top in sheets.

They mount with "J bolts". Basically a hook with a threaded portion. The hook comes up from the bottom (and hooks onto the bed rail) and you put a washer on it to hold the box down. When I need the full bed length, it takes longer to empty the box than it does to remove the box. I have a socket adapter for my drill, so I can zip them off in no time. For a Ranger you really only need a single hook for each side, though for a full size truck with a larger box you might want 2 on each side.

Amazon.com: JGR Pickup Truck Tool Box Tie Downs Aluminum J Hook Crossover 4 Pack, Black: Automotive
 
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wildbill23c

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There's no need to drill into the bed to mount a cross bed box. I have an aluminum diamond plate box in my 1997 when I don't have the fiberglass cap on it. I run the cap most of the time, but I have the toolbox for when I need to carry large things in the summer months. I hear you on finding a cap for a 7 foot bed. I was able to find a color matched one for my truck, but it was a 10 hour round trip drive to pick it up. Still ended up paying a shop to repaint it, as the clear coat was coming off the top in sheets.

They mount with "J bolts". Basically a hook with a threaded portion. The hook comes up from the bottom (and hooks onto the bed rail) and you put a washer on it to hold the box down. When I need the full bed length, it takes longer to empty the box than it does to remove the box. I have a socket adapter for my drill, so I can zip them off in no time. For a Ranger you really only need a single hook for each side, though for a full size truck with a larger box you might want 2 on each side.

Amazon.com: JGR Pickup Truck Tool Box Tie Downs Aluminum J Hook Crossover 4 Pack, Black: Automotive
Thanks for the info on the J-Hooks. Makes me feel better about mounting a cross bed toolbox and not drilling through the bed. I've yet to find a camper shell so the cross bed box would at least keep tools out of the weather. That's the only downfall with a regular cab truck from the 80's no space behind the seat to store tools or anything LOL.
 

TonkaMan

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Thanks for the info on the J-Hooks. Makes me feel better about mounting a cross bed toolbox and not drilling through the bed. I've yet to find a camper shell so the cross bed box would at least keep tools out of the weather. That's the only downfall with a regular cab truck from the 80's no space behind the seat to store tools or anything LOL.
Lol. I'm 6' 1", so in my 97 the bench seat is set back almost as far as it goes in my regular cab. I've got space for a small fire extinguisher and a sunshade for the windshield, and that's about it behind the seat. When I have the cap on I have a plywood platform with removable covers I made that fills the entire length of the bed. Gives me 4 defined compartments to store things that they won't slide around and it hides all of my tools. And because the platform top is about 1/4" above the wheelwells, I can carry 4x8 sheet materials easily if I need to provided the tailgate is down. I occasionally solo camp in the back too, since the bed is 7' long. Just low ceiling height.
 

wildbill23c

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Lol. I'm 6' 1", so in my 97 the bench seat is set back almost as far as it goes in my regular cab. I've got space for a small fire extinguisher and a sunshade for the windshield, and that's about it behind the seat. When I have the cap on I have a plywood platform with removable covers I made that fills the entire length of the bed. Gives me 4 defined compartments to store things that they won't slide around and it hides all of my tools. And because the platform top is about 1/4" above the wheelwells, I can carry 4x8 sheet materials easily if I need to provided the tailgate is down. I occasionally solo camp in the back too, since the bed is 7' long. Just low ceiling height.
Yep, the seat in my 87 is all the way back....no room back there at all. There's 2 speakers behind the seat, I assume they're factory, at least they look like they would be, so there's absolutely no room for anything back there LOL.

If I ever find a shell, I would like to build something similar for camping, and for organization as well. However, a cross bed toolbox will probably be my resolution here very soon.

I do have a trailer hitch installed, just haven't installed the light receptacle...need to do that one of these days. I'd like to find a small camp trailer at some point that I could tow behind my Bronco 2 or the Ranger. So it would have to be pretty light weight and small.
 

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