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Author Topic: Build a Flatbed  (Read 2133 times)

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Offline firefighter ontheside

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Build a Flatbed
« on: April 26, 2022, 02:21:17 PM »
Has anyone built a flatbed?  The flatbed on the truck I bought is very rusted, so I've been looking for one to buy.  Then last night it occurred to me I should build one.  I've considered building one mostly of wood, but also building one of a combination of aluminum and wood.  I like the idea of one with a wood deck.  Obviously I can cut my own white oak to use and to replace it when it goes bad.  The headache rack will likely need to be all metal.  I don't like the one I have thats hard to see thru.  I kind of have a design in mind where I use aluminum as cross members and 2x6 on the deck.  I'm bidding on some aluminum tube that I think will be suitable.  I will go look at it this week to make sure.  I may have to have someone do some welding for me.  Not only does the rusty one look like crap, but I think a wooden one will look good for what I'm doing with this truck.  
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Offline PoginyHill

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2022, 02:27:14 PM »
I built a dump body for my one-ton dually. Has removable sides, so it can be a flatbed. I built it with a metal rectangular tube frame and side posts and wooden bed and sides. you can purchase a hoist kit for the dump - 12V electric.
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Offline Resonator

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2022, 02:55:57 PM »
I'm kind of kicking around the idea of a build myself, there are videos and how-to articles online. The high salt highway diet is killing my '07 Ram, and I'm going to have to do bodywork soon, and may just change out the rusty pickup box for a flatbed. I would build mine out of steel if I do, and would permanently mount winches on the sides along with stake pockets for side boards. Aluminum is lighter weight, but more expensive than steel and something I've never welded.
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Offline Old Greenhorn

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2022, 03:13:30 PM »
Bill, is it rusted and rotted through, or just rusty? My son re-does his truck chassis and trailer frames every year or two with a needle gun and then some fancy thick expensive paint that makes it look great and it pretty tough. I can get the name of that stuff if you think it might help.
 If not, perhaps consider building that bed so that it can be made into a dump further down the road. Makes unloading logs a lot easier!
Tom Lindtveit, Woodsman Forest Products
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I can work with wood, but I am NOT a Woodworker, but almost.

Offline Roundhouse

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #4 on: April 26, 2022, 03:42:44 PM »
I didn't build this one but it is steel and wood. It was on the truck when I bought and I figured I would replace the wood decking. Surprisingly the wood has held up well enough I haven't done anything with it yet just used as is. This truck isn't run in the winter or on salted roads, it also helps to have the back tipped with not in use and let the rain roll off. Yes that is a hole patched with chipboard that was there when I bought it and shockingly has withstood many loads of sand and gravel. It's handy to remove the sideboards when needed and even though the truck is on it's last legs this bed will probably see another use when the truck is done.


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Offline bluthum

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #5 on: April 26, 2022, 03:54:43 PM »
I don't have a wood floored flat bed any more but when I did it was nice to be able to fasten directly to the deck with screws or even nails when hauling some thing fragile  that needed a meticulous hold down.

Offline firefighter ontheside

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #6 on: April 26, 2022, 04:31:09 PM »
Tom, several of the crossmembers under the bed are almost gone and theres not much holding the headache rack on, but rust.  As Roundhouse pointed out, tipping the bed while parked will keep water from collecting there, especially when leaves and other debris have clogged any gaps that exist.  Luckily where I park it in the future will be sloped.  

Bluthum, that's another good point about a wood bed.  I have done that on my trailer and its nice to be able to do.  I will use this truck to deliver projects that I have built.  It will be nice to not have to cart the 18' trailer all the time.
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Offline 21incher

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #7 on: April 26, 2022, 04:35:04 PM »
I think you should contact Jeff. He built the most awesome one for Mr Truck  smiley_smash
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Offline Old Greenhorn

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #8 on: April 26, 2022, 04:39:45 PM »
Well then, if it's shot there is no way to go but UP!
Tom Lindtveit, Woodsman Forest Products
Oscar 328 Band Mill, Husky 450, 562, & 372 (Clone), Mule 3010, and too many hand tools. :) Retired and trying to make a living to stay that way. NYLT Certified.
OK, maybe I am the woodcutter now.
I can work with wood, but I am NOT a Woodworker, but almost.

Offline firefighter ontheside

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #9 on: April 26, 2022, 05:40:26 PM »
I forgot about Mr Truck.
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Offline muggs

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #10 on: April 26, 2022, 06:37:00 PM »
I have built a couple of them. Buying all the stuff at a truck supple place. I would not do it again, too expensive. I would try and find a used one and modify it.

Offline firefighter ontheside

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #11 on: April 26, 2022, 10:15:15 PM »
I have considered that option, if I come across the right bed that will modify the way I want it to look.
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Offline Crusarius

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #12 on: April 26, 2022, 10:29:46 PM »
Bill, is it rusted and rotted through, or just rusty? My son re-does his truck chassis and trailer frames every year or two with a needle gun and then some fancy thick expensive paint that makes it look great and it pretty tough. I can get the name of that stuff if you think it might help.
 If not, perhaps consider building that bed so that it can be made into a dump further down the road. Makes unloading logs a lot easier!
I bet you anything its called POR-15. good stuff but pricey.

Offline Crusarius

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #13 on: April 26, 2022, 10:32:40 PM »
I have been wanting to build replacement beds for trucks for a while. Just never had any customers. And I only have one truck that the bed is still good on.

Feel like making a trip to NY? Could get you a pretty nice custom flatbed.

Offline thecfarm

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #14 on: April 27, 2022, 05:38:11 AM »
I had a flatbed on one of trucks, no dump. The body was not long enough!! When I would push gravel out of the body, it would land on the bumper. I built an extension to solve that problem. 
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Offline Gere Flewelling

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #15 on: April 27, 2022, 08:09:43 AM »
From my experience, if you have an 8' bed on your pickup you need to make your flatbed a foot longer to clear the bumper.  Other wise you will always have what ever you have in your body building up on the top of the bumper.  I have found that a swing down tailgate never works well as the body is higher than the original.  I have built a couple of permanently mounted steel tailgates that swing off to the sides that have worked well for me.  I will try to post a couple of pictures when I get a chance.
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Offline firefighter ontheside

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #16 on: April 27, 2022, 08:54:25 AM »
Thanks Crusarius, but a trip to NY is not likely.  
Now I found a used solid aluminum Hillsboro brand bed for $1000 I'm considering.  Won't look neat like I want, but also a lot less work.

 
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Offline Dakota

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #17 on: April 27, 2022, 09:02:46 AM »
I built this flatbed a few years ago for my little red dully.



 



 



 



 



 



 
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Offline hedgerow

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #18 on: April 27, 2022, 09:06:21 AM »
Thanks Crusarius, but a trip to NY is not likely.  
Now I found a used solid aluminum Hillsboro brand bed for $1000 I'm considering.  Won't look neat like I want, but also a lot less work.
If the bed in good shape I would get there and get it bought. You can't touch a aluminum one around here for thousand dollars. I had a Hillsboro on a 2005 ford for fifteen years. Bed was still in great shape when I sold the truck. Drove the truck every winter in the salt. 

Offline Crusarius

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #19 on: April 27, 2022, 09:39:33 AM »
I agree with hedgrow. You should already have that bed.

Offline firefighter ontheside

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #20 on: April 27, 2022, 11:02:10 AM »
Thanks guys.  I have already messaged him and told him I could be there tomorrow morning with cash.
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Offline firefighter ontheside

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #21 on: April 27, 2022, 11:03:11 AM »
Dakota, that looks really nice.
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Offline Resonator

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #22 on: April 27, 2022, 11:16:26 AM »
Looks solid, check for any cracks/breaks in the aluminum, and how it was bolted down to the truck frame. I would probably switch out the tail lights and markers to LED's if they aren't already. smiley_thumbsup
Under bark there's boards and beams, somewhere in between.
Cuttin' while its green, through a steady sawdust stream.
I'm chasing the sawdust dream.

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Online barbender

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #23 on: April 27, 2022, 11:21:43 AM »
Yes, that's an excellent price!
Too many irons in the fire

Offline moodnacreek

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #24 on: April 27, 2022, 01:07:32 PM »
Buy that body. Have you seen what metal cost?

Offline firefighter ontheside

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #25 on: April 27, 2022, 01:15:00 PM »
I'll pick it up tomorrow morning about 9.  The truck is still in the shop getting a ball joint, so I can't use it to go get the bed.  I'll have to use my other truck and trailer to go get it.  The old bed has beams running front to back that appear to be welded to the bed cross members.  Looks Like I will have to unbolt the those beams and remove the bed.  Then I can cut the bed loose and reuse those beams for the new bed.  I will use some sort of rubber or plastic spacers to keep the aluminum separated from the steel.  I looked at the truck we have at the firehouse and that's how that one is on.  I will need to fashion some sort of door to cover up the hole for the gooseneck.  The truck frame has a B&W turnover ball gooseneck, so I will be able to pull a gn or even my 5th wheel if needed.
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Offline Machinebuilder

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #26 on: April 27, 2022, 02:24:41 PM »
I would almost race you to get that bed.....................

I think I have my name on an EBY, hopefully in June. New ones for an 8' bed replacement are not available.

I looked into building one but I do not have the place to do the fab work, and the material cost was high enough I decided not to.

Dave, Woodmizer LT15, Husqvarna 465 and 435, Bobcat 751, David Brown 770

Offline firefighter ontheside

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #27 on: April 27, 2022, 08:57:09 PM »
I have to bring some logs with me to put the flatbed on my trailer, otherwise it would have to sit on my fenders.  I hope my tractor is able to lift these beds up and down, otherwise I'm gonna need a few of you guys to come over.
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Offline Crusarius

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #28 on: April 27, 2022, 10:15:59 PM »
i'm in :)

Offline PoginyHill

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #29 on: April 28, 2022, 07:26:34 AM »
This is the one I built about 20 years ago. I have never replaced anything on it. Lather the bed with used motor oil every couple years, but that's it. Never built at tailgate. Clamp on a wooden one to haul gravel as I need it. The cab is rusted so I cannot get an inspection sticker this year. I've been thinking about selling the bed with hoist & 12V pump. Will keep the truck as a plow truck. Is there a market for a dump body like this? Basically 8ft X 8ft. Side pull out for a flatbed.



 


 
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #30 on: April 28, 2022, 07:37:35 AM »
Oh, I bet someone would buy that pretty quickly.  Looks like a nice bed.
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Offline kantuckid

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #31 on: April 28, 2022, 08:50:56 AM »
Bill, is it rusted and rotted through, or just rusty? My son re-does his truck chassis and trailer frames every year or two with a needle gun and then some fancy thick expensive paint that makes it look great and it pretty tough. I can get the name of that stuff if you think it might help.
 If not, perhaps consider building that bed so that it can be made into a dump further down the road. Makes unloading logs a lot easier!
I bet you anything its called POR-15. good stuff but pricey.
Another company in IN, KBS Coatings - Rust Prevention - Stop Rust Paint - Gas Tank Sealer - Clear Coat Paints sells a similar product line as does POR-15. Both companies sell a product line beyond one such paint as mentioned here. I buy some of the KBS paints from a local AP's store, but mostly in the past I bought from the web.
As for longevity of White Oak in a bed- I ordered a new Gatormade utility trailer over 20 yrs ago without a wood bed. I then installed my own 1" thick WO using self-tapping screws designed for such purposes. That bed is still intact but is showing it's age and need replacement sooner, not later. You can still walk on it, etc., but it's ugly. Now and then, when dry, like maybe 5 years apart or so, I pour on a diesel/used crankcase oil mixture. 
I once bought Jeep J10 PU truck (was about 1983 or so) that had a decent cab other than rusted rocker panels but the bed was badly rusted. I traded that bed to a guy who had a commercially made small truck bed and added wood and stake holders and the bed lasted longer than the 6-8 years I owned the truck. BTW, that truck was one of the worst vehicles I've ever owned, period! Too long a tale to tell now. ;D
TSC sells a cheaper line of enamel paints in qt.'s & gallons in tractor/equipment colors and basic colors too. It's a very high quality paint line that I've personally used. They do run sales on it and it will last a very long time on a truck bed. Enamels are far, FAR! easier to work with than moisture cure paints such as KBS's version or POR-15! Price and user issues, I'd choose a high quality enamel.
I've got an antique motorcycle project that has moisture cure paint on it and I've found that it does seem to chip a bit easier (like from a wrench that slips and tinks it) than a high quality acrylic enamel.
Salvage yards? See what you can find interesting.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #32 on: April 28, 2022, 05:21:27 PM »
Well, I left home at 7am and had the bed loaded at 9.  Guy had a track hoe to take care of that chore.  Home about 11:30.  That was all good.  Then I went to start the sawmill and gas was running down the side of the motor.  Stupid rodent of some sort had chewed thru the fuel line.  Luckily I had a piece in the garage and got that repaired.  A customer came to have some logs milled which went well until he tried to leave any my tractor wouldnt start.  Of course it was blocking his way out, so we had to push it into my yard so he could leave.  It's in the yard now with a tarp over it, because I have no time to mess with it.

Here's a few pics of the bed.  It was used a lot to tow a gooseneck and it shows.  Some damage from careless hooking and unhooking.  That won't affect how I use it one bit.  I will need to relocate the fuel fill spot to be in front of the wheels instead of behind.

 

 
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Offline rusticretreater

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #33 on: April 28, 2022, 05:55:10 PM »
That sounds so much like a day in my life.  I am always, I need to do this, but first I need to fix/build/buy this.  Take today for instance... :)
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Offline Old Greenhorn

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #34 on: April 28, 2022, 06:59:55 PM »
Looking good Bill! Those love taps can be buffed up a bit or plated over by a good guy with a heli-arc. The rest of the bed looks clean and straight. Minor stuff to do, but you found a winner pretty quick.
Tom Lindtveit, Woodsman Forest Products
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OK, maybe I am the woodcutter now.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #35 on: April 28, 2022, 07:57:06 PM »
definitely a good score.

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #36 on: April 29, 2022, 09:30:24 AM »
Helpful hint of the day: With an alu bed mtd to a steel frame you must pay heed to galvanic action realities. My Ford F-150 is the first year of alu body PU trucks-might look into what Ford uses on these pickups?  I have no idea if it's a plastic spacer or rubber or what but it matters to your application too. 
Maybe it came with spacers?
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #37 on: April 29, 2022, 09:42:58 AM »
Yeah, I had already decided to put some spacers between the bed and the frame.  I will either use some rubber that I have or make some plastic HDPE spacers between the bed and the frame mounts.  I looked at the truck we have at the firehouse and it appears to have rubber spacers.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #38 on: April 29, 2022, 09:52:58 AM »
Stainless bolts are the worst thing to use with aluminum. Even though every trailer company in the world does it.

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #39 on: April 29, 2022, 10:35:15 AM »
Looks like you got a smokin' hot deal. smiley_thumbsup
X2 on spacers on the frame, hard plastic or rubber. Vibration is the enemy too, anytime you haul steel on the deck put down wood blocking first. I carried chunks of old rubber conveyor belt when I drove flatbed semi to keep the load from rubbing into the deck. 
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #40 on: April 29, 2022, 11:55:01 AM »
I didn't know that stainless and aluminum were bad together.  What would be the best combo? Galvanized?
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #41 on: April 29, 2022, 12:24:07 PM »
I don't remember but I know zinc plated it much better than stainless. Stainless and aluminum are at the opposite ends of the galvanic spectrum and therefore react the most with each other.

Zinc or black oxide are my thoughts for best options. never thought of galvanized that may work as well.

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #42 on: April 29, 2022, 07:29:06 PM »
I looked it up after I asked.  You are right with zinc, since its closer in the galvanic spectrum.  I will use zinc coated steel bolts and washers, plus some plastic spacers.  I brought the truck home tonight and hope to do some work on it tomorrow.  That may just be getting the old bed off.  Thankfully, I can do that since we got the tractor to start.  I put the battery on charger all morning.  Dad came down and looked at it and said the negative battery cable is bad.  I of course disagreed.  Well he was right, because as soon as I replaced it it started right up.  I found a new place to connect a new cable to the frame and it was like magic.  
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #43 on: April 30, 2022, 12:45:10 AM »
Well, I left home at 7am and had the bed loaded at 9.  Guy had a track hoe to take care of that chore.  Home about 11:30.  That was all good.  Then I went to start the sawmill and gas was running down the side of the motor.  Stupid rodent of some sort had chewed thru the fuel line.  Luckily I had a piece in the garage and got that repaired.  A customer came to have some logs milled which went well until he tried to leave any my tractor wouldnt start.  Of course it was blocking his way out, so we had to push it into my yard so he could leave.  It's in the yard now with a tarp over it, because I have no time to mess with it.

Here's a few pics of the bed.  It was used a lot to tow a gooseneck and it shows.  Some damage from careless hooking and unhooking.  That won't affect how I use it one bit.  I will need to relocate the fuel fill spot to be in front of the wheels instead of behind.
(Image hidden from quote, click to view.)
 
(Image hidden from quote, click to view.)


if that was my bed , i'd cut a 50" section wide in the middle by the full length out of it and lower that portion down as far as I could . yeah , lots of work , but i hate that a flat bed is sooooo tall when a nice modification or 6 could make the center 50" as low as the original truck bed was

nice score though , with a little love it'll last a long while

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #44 on: April 30, 2022, 01:50:55 PM »
This 2wd truck will not have a very high bed.  I got the old bed off and realized that I will not be able to use any of the old framework from that bed.  My new bed came with some frame rails so I will use those.  I'll need to get a couple pieces of C channel to use to span the truck frame and have those welded on.  The bed was held on with 4 bolts that were all loose, like you could wiggle them in their holes.  The tractor worked well for lifting off the bed.  I have to work the next 2 days, so I won't get the new bed on til tuesday at the soonest.

 

 
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #45 on: April 30, 2022, 02:05:08 PM »
Hope to see a pic or two of what the frame looks like post "old bed" removal. 
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #46 on: April 30, 2022, 02:27:18 PM »
Do you mean truck frame?  Thats easy, I'll be right back.

 

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #47 on: April 30, 2022, 02:33:23 PM »
A very light amount of surface rust, but not bad at all for a 24 year old truck.
When I first talked about buying a truck I asked my wife to make some stickers.  She did that today and we put on one side.  I really like it.

 
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #48 on: April 30, 2022, 03:41:16 PM »
A very light amount of surface rust, but not bad at all for a 24 year old truck.
When I first talked about buying a truck I asked my wife to make some stickers.  She did that today and we put on one side.  I really like it.
(Image hidden from quote, click to view.)

That's cool . I like what she used to make the wording ......  smiley_clapping 

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #49 on: April 30, 2022, 05:44:01 PM »
Thanks Crusarius, but a trip to NY is not likely.  
Now I found a used solid aluminum Hillsboro brand bed for $1000 I'm considering.  Won't look neat like I want, but also a lot less work.
(Image hidden from quote, click to view.)

IMHO this is the way to go,
D

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #50 on: April 30, 2022, 08:25:56 PM »
Looking good Bill! I like that lettering, it looks slick. I am also impressed by the condition of that frame. You never see THAT around here!
 Maybe you can put the old bed up on CL and get a grand for it or so?  :D ;D
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #51 on: May 01, 2022, 09:39:40 AM »
Thanks all.  Cindy found this lettering and we have adopted it for the shirts she has made me too.  It seemed fitting with the tools.  I am amazed at the condition of the body and frame of this truck.  Even here its unheard of to have so little rust.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #52 on: May 01, 2022, 01:08:59 PM »
How easy is it to read from a distance?

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #53 on: May 01, 2022, 01:40:32 PM »
It's probably not great as far as that goes, but it doesn't concern me.  It's really more for my amusement than it is for real advertising.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #54 on: May 02, 2022, 08:27:47 AM »
I'm out of time to look further but seems that Ford uses some sort of new, patented gizmo with alu beds as spacers? But there's lots of people posting on beds like yours to read. 
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #55 on: May 02, 2022, 12:22:41 PM »
I came across a Ford forum discussion that talked about using wood as spacers where needed to level the mounts to adapt a pickup truck frame to accept a flatbed.  There were many references to wood being used on many trucks such as tanks trucks.  The wood appears to be bolted to the truck mounts and then large u bolts being used to go around the truck frame and into the mounting tabs on the bed.  I am going to investigate if this will work better than the way it was mounted before.  I didn't like they way that some C channel was mounted across the truck frame with other beams welded to the channel and then the bed sitting on those members.  It seemed repetitively redundant.  Of course I need to be sure that the bed is mounted high enough for wheel travel.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #56 on: May 02, 2022, 01:24:35 PM »
I would not be comfortable with wood at all. To easy for it to split and loosen the u-bolts. or even just compress and loosen them.

u-bolts can take alot of abuse. Until they loosen. Just like lugnuts!

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #57 on: May 02, 2022, 01:35:59 PM »
It seemed contra indicated to me too, but there seemed to be some legitimate comments saying it was a good idea and used regularly on big trucks.  
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #58 on: May 02, 2022, 04:14:29 PM »
Looks nice Bill. Looks even better on my iPad than what you sent me earlier today but that was on my phone. I like the Hillsboro bed. You done good.
Btw, the wind picked up a bit and that fire roared 




 



 

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #59 on: May 02, 2022, 04:22:08 PM »
I see wood used all the time under dump beds on tandem dump trucks. Get yourself some blocks of white oak or something else dense, I don't think you'll have any issues at all.
Too many irons in the fire

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #60 on: May 03, 2022, 05:52:19 AM »
I had a Ford with Ford flatbed on it, I forgot the year.
They used wood to level out the frame. Was about 8 inches high. I took the flat bed off that truck and put it on a '76. I cut about 6 inches off that piece of wood to lower the body. I only hauled wood with it and wanted it lower to throw wood into. Used it for about 10 years and worked great.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #61 on: May 03, 2022, 09:57:59 AM »
I had planned to get to work on it this morning, but mandatory OT got in my way.  I'm leaning toward using the wood.  I just might have some white oak around that will work.  It's dried, so I wont have to worry about the wood shrinking after being installed.  I also have a locust 6x6 that I might re-saw for this. It will only serve as a spacer and will not be involved in holding the bed on the frame.  That will be done by steel and aluminum.  It will solve some of the issue of steel reacting with aluminum.  Looking at the underside of the aluminum bed it appeared that in its previous life some steel washers that were part of holding the bed on had completely eaten thru the aluminum mounts.  I will find some teflon or other plastic washers to help prevent that from happening again.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #62 on: May 04, 2022, 07:34:44 PM »
I got the bed on today, but only temporarily.  I need to do some more work.  I didn't use any wood.  I bought some 3x3 square tube and used a little 4" tube that I already had.  I will use some rubber that I have to put in between the aluminum and the steel frame.


 

 
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #63 on: May 04, 2022, 09:10:25 PM »
Looks right sharp on there, anyhow!
Too many irons in the fire

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #64 on: May 05, 2022, 09:46:00 AM »
When I put the aluminum bed on my Ford. I used a three or four inch channel were the truck frame dipped and used four inch by 1/4 thick flat running up the truck frame to the steel frame for the aluminum bed. The steel frame was welded to the truck frame. I used 3M spray under coating on flat bed frame and truck frame. Then mounted the aluminum flat bed to the steel frame. I drove the truck every winter for fifteen years and when I sold the truck everything was still solid. I would usually touch up the under coating every couple of years to keep it looking nice. 

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #65 on: May 05, 2022, 09:49:58 AM »
Avoid welding a truck frame. They are heat treated and welding them will weaken them. Drill and bolt.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #66 on: May 05, 2022, 12:24:04 PM »
This truck has larger than stock tires(the way I got it) so I needed a little extra lift on the bed.  I will be removing the bed to finish mounting the rails to the truck frame.  I will grind off a little rust thats on the bed rails and then coat with this undercoating I bought.  I probably need more than the one can I got. 

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #67 on: May 05, 2022, 12:45:36 PM »
You may want to consider something that doesn't dry or cure, like Fluid Film. My experience with undercoating sprays is that, unless the surface is perfectly clean, it will eventually peel off. Or use the undercoating then apply a non-hardening rust preventer if/when it does start to peel - only in those areas. I've occasionally used a rust converter, but not on an undercoating type application. That might work also, rather than trying to grind it all off.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #68 on: May 06, 2022, 08:31:29 AM »
I will look for something like that, especially for the old parts.  I will use the other product on the new parts.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #69 on: May 07, 2022, 07:38:10 PM »
I just ordered black cosmoline to put on the frame parts.  Won't be here til mid week, so I may not get the truck bed all mounted til next week.  I guess better to wait and do it right.  
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #70 on: May 08, 2022, 06:45:21 AM »
If there is a NAPA auto parts store near you, I would suggest you see if they stock any of the "SEM" brand paint products.  SEM makes a product called "Rust Trap" that is similar to the POR product others have mentioned in this post.  The POR product is good except  that you have to throw away what you don't use as you can't get the container (paint can) to seal back up good enough to keep the product from hardening up after a week or so.  The Rust Trap product comes in a quart can similar to what brake fluid comes in.  You can pour out what you need and then dump back what you don't use into the can and seal it up.  I have had great results with this product on my truck frames and beds.  You can then spray on whatever top coating you desire.  The Rust Trap product must be painted over with something to keep ultraviolet rays away from it.  Also this product is less expensive than the POR product.  It comes in black or silver.  I have used both and recommend the black.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #71 on: May 14, 2022, 07:24:39 PM »
Doesn't really look any different than the previous photo, but in this one the bed is permanently attached and the tail lights work.  I don't have the back up lights wired yet, but I will work on that soon.  The frame parts are all coated in black cosmoline and I think that is a good product that will protect the frame from further rust.  I want to get some underbody tool boxes to mount at the front of the bed.  I used some purple power cleaner and scrubbed the flatbed. It looks a little better than it did.  


 
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #72 on: May 14, 2022, 08:31:10 PM »
Door sign is easily readable. Truck looks great.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #73 on: May 14, 2022, 08:53:06 PM »
Truck looks great! I have an underbody box I would give you, if you were more local but shipping is somewhat prohibitive. Sorry.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #74 on: May 14, 2022, 09:22:38 PM »
yea, door sticker looks good.

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #75 on: May 15, 2022, 01:35:23 PM »
Lookin' nice! smiley_thumbsup
For side boxes it depends how much you want to spend, I see some ready made steel and aluminum ones available online. Less expensive way would be to get a used metal shop cabinet modify it to fit, and seal it up weather tight.
Under bark there's boards and beams, somewhere in between.
Cuttin' while its green, through a steady sawdust stream.
I'm chasing the sawdust dream.

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Offline firefighter ontheside

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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #76 on: May 15, 2022, 09:17:46 PM »
Thanks.  I've been doing some polishing of the aluminum and scraping some concrete spatter off of it.  Sometimes I really wish I was a metal worker along with being a woodworker.  If I could just weld, it would really be helpful.  I see a lot of regular truck tool boxes going for cheap and think, if I was a metal worker I might be able to make that into an underbody box or two.
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Re: Build a Flatbed
« Reply #77 on: Today at 09:43:00 AM »
Thanks.  I've been doing some polishing of the aluminum and scraping some concrete spatter off of it.  Sometimes I really wish I was a metal worker along with being a woodworker.  If I could just weld, it would really be helpful.  I see a lot of regular truck tool boxes going for cheap and think, if I was a metal worker I might be able to make that into an underbody box or two.
Just keep watching Facebook market place and Craigslist you find some aluminum tool boxes. I wouldn't put a steel one on that nice bed. I just had one on my bed I found it at a swap meet. There wasn't room to have one on each side on my Ford. Back before I had a fuel trailer, tool trailer I would put a fuel tank and tool box on the flat bed during planting and harvest and take them off the rest of the year.  


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