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Rear Cargo Box

I go away every couple of months to go motocrossing and off-roading, I have a lot of gear to take and one of the things that annoys me is having loads of bags and boxes in the back of the truck all moving around etc. I decided I would make a rear cargo box that would fit over the wheel arches giving me a flat surface in the rear and room enough for a lot of tools and gear underneath in drawers and panels. It will also mean on long journeys I can have the back fully packed but still be able to access tools or emergency equipment without having to unload or move gear around.

Then I found details on the web (here) of two people who have done almost exactly the kind of thing I was planning (and on 4 Runners too!). My plans are slightly different but along the same lines (two drawers & other flip-up panels).

Tools/Equipment Needed

  • 18mm & 12mm MDF boards
  • 2 Kitchen unit drawer kits
  • Wood screws
  • Hinges
  • MDF Sealer (primer)
  • Paint
  • Carpet
  • Carpet Adhesive
  • Router
  • Disc saw
  • Jigsaw
  • Drill
  • Screwdrivers

Phase 1 - Main Unit

This is the main unit comprising of two drawers and a large compartment.

This will fit between the wheel arches and the lid/s will cover the entire rear of the truck (with different lift-up panels to access the sides etc.

The panels are all routed (for extra strength) as well screwed together.

Here you can see the two drawers in place (obviously with no fronts). They are a bit shallow but were the best I could get.  

Phase 2- Top and Front Panels

Here you can see the cargo box finally taking shape with all the top and front panels cut and roughly in place.

The diving Air Cylinder is going to be a semi-permanent fixture in the truck for running air tools and airing up tyres when out on 4x4 missions etc.


Here you can see the two drawers at the front, the main compartment lid at the back and the two small side panel flaps open (not yet fitted hinges on these two panels).

I will be fitting a gas-strut on the main compartment lid so it will stay open on its own.


Phase 3 - Sealing, Painting & Carpeting

Next I sealed all the wood with MDF sealer/primer to protect from any moisture and allow a good finish for the paint. I then painted all the surfaces that would be visible after carpeting. Then I glued some cheap carpet onto the top and front panels. I used some cord loops for handles on the panels and drawers, and here you can see the almost finished box (no drawer handles yet):



I have taken a lot of time to ensure the information above is correct, but please remember vehicle manufacturers make alterations and design changes during the production run of a vehicle. No liability can be accepted for loss, damage or injury caused by any errors in, or omissions from, the information given above.

If you think any information is incorrect, confusing, misleading or incomplete, please feel free to contact me.

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