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Discussion Starter #1
I have always held that a pickup truck must at minimum be able to haul a 4x8 between the wheel wells, even if you have to run with the tailgate down (short bed trucks). That means a minimum width between the wheel wells of 49 inches.

My question for the community is this: How tall does the cargo box have to be? The top of my Super Duty’s tailgate is 22 inches above the load deck. Is this the minimum?

Of course I’m driving at something. You gotta do things differently if you want different results.
 

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OBS junkie
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You thinking about cutting your bed down alittle Dave? I guess for what I do (work truck/daily driver) it's perfect height for me. I will admit though the deep beds of the new F150s are kinda neat. But they do remind me of a hot tub in alot of ways though.
 

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kinda like those fontain beds?
not really even a bed but they have a little 6-8" tailgate??
 

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I didnt know there was a minumum height. Hey dan I put 4 tiedowns in a new chevy for a guy, he wanted stainless steel,but mild steel would be just as nice espically if they were powder coated. I used a peice of 1/4 barstock 2 1/2 by 5 inches(about the size of a pack of ciggerets but thinner an maybe longer, I used 8 peices of this drilled 5/8 holes through allof them at once on my drill press( it took a while drilling) I started out with a 11/64 bit and moved onup. I used 1/2 s.s round stock bent into Cs faceing down only all flat sides , welded them to the plates on top (you could drill the plate out put your round stock through an weld on the bottom for added strength and weld the top or leave untouched your preference) I rounded the sharp edges off put 1/2 carrige bolts through the 4 i welded c hooks to tack welded them in to keep em from spinning (as i have no bits to drill a square holes,lol and not plasma cutting 4 drilling 4) used the other pieces as a template in the bed to mark wear i was to drill through, drilled through the bed put the hooks and bolts through the holes used the others as washers under neath with flats locks nuts and a nylock to jam nut it. he use the 2inch straps and wanted something stout. and the olboy gave me a 20$ tip on top of the 130$ i charged him for the whole mess. he really liked and not to brag but i thought they looked almost like meant to be. thers a million ways to do it but i thought that was about as sturdy as you could get.if you went a similar route keep in mind if you were hauling lighter stuff you could go lighter maybe no washer plate,or a different size or material . like s.s on top m.s. on bottom .
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I think what I am driving at is (as a first step) to lower the bed rails down to a level maybe one inch higher than a fifth wheel sits above the load deck and taper the rear of the bed to the slightly wider than the distance between the wheel wells. Allowing for tailgate post thickness my guess is 52” wide and maybe 12” above the deck. Just doing that would reduce my wake area by 65%.

From there, I look to build two “doghouses.”

One would be for operating without a trailer (most of the time.) It would gracefully connect the cab to this much smaller tailgate. I use either a big hatch or a roll-up (ReTrax or Pace-Edwards) cover to allow putting odd sized loads in quickly and easily.

The second would be to fair in a long skinny pop-up type trailer. Think a 80 inch wide by 30 foot long Hi-Lo, but for my purposes it would be a very spartan toy hauler – a cargo trailer with AC and heat and a porta-pot. The top part would have a tail cone to make it low-drag. With a special “doghouse” to fair it into the truck, it would be a very slick and low-resistance setup.

There is a guy who took his 50 MPG Civic and by reducing aero drag jacked that thing up to 95 MPG. If he could fit a nice efficient diesel in it he would win the X-prize. Currently, his car is as ugly as homemade sin – he is no body man and he has held expenses down to $400 ... and it looks it – but the thing does work. I don’t look to get that radical but if I can get this truck to 30 MPG…
 

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Yeah that's a good idea, get a second bed to modify and keep around the stocker
 

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Same here.
I'm still trying to figure out how to put some realy sturdy anchor points in my bed for ratchet straps. Flatbeds have them already.
Dunno if anyone answered this for you, but you can get high strength D-rings from any trailer supply place. We use them for securing race cars inside trailers and they're plenty sturdy. Install is straight forward.
 

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I like stack pockets to when the oportunity presents itself
 

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Dave,

Maybe it would be easier to just make a custom flatbed to try this out on.
if you use wood for most of it, you could reduce weight too.

Just throwing out an idea.
 

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A well built wood flatbed might just be the way to go.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Starting with a flat bed is an idea with merit. I don’t spend a lot of time and effort wondering what to cut off – its all gone to start with.

Barring a hit on the lottery, I may be a bit ahead of myself anyway.
 

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Lets see anchor points. With my do-g- I got 2x6x096 " tube.Cut it for mounting two 1/4" flat stock with cut down 3/8" extention nuts welded in to hold the dry box. Also drilled holes for 1/2" and 3/8" extention nuts at each end this will bolt down chain for the back to chain to.The back of the box I made a template to fit the corners with 3x3x.375 angle drilled and tapped for 3/8" bolts.This also is for the non drop down tailgate to load the quad. The unistrut works soooo well for the spring nuts ( without springs) will mount any thing anywhere. I have inverted 11/4 angle to go across the box to hold it all together when the tailgate is off. This is of coarse bolted to the sides of the box. 1/2" bolts and the factory tie downs. I can hardly wait for my new truck.:ford:
 

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