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Wood bed conversion

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by cj7jeep81, Jan 13, 2004.

  1. cj7jeep81

    cj7jeep81 1/2 ton status

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    I am wanting to replace the rotted out wooden bed in my '78 stepside with a steel floor. I plan on getting a bedliner sprayed in, so I would rather use steel. What thickness steel would work best? I was thinking either 16 or 18 gauge, but I'm not too sure. Any ideas?
     
  2. CyberSniper

    CyberSniper 1/2 ton status Premium Member

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    16 is what all beds are. But they're corrugated so they have added strength. I'd go no less than 14 gauge.
     
  3. cj7jeep81

    cj7jeep81 1/2 ton status

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    Thanks for the info. I wasn't sure what they used. I'll check with some local suppliers and see what they have.
     
  4. kennyw

    kennyw N9PHW Premium Member

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    If you are going to go with flat plate, consider getting 10-12 ga, maybe even diamond tread. The flat panels are no where near as strong as the corragated panels. But 10-12 ga would be strong enough for putting loads on and using it as a truck.
     
  5. R72K5

    R72K5 Banned

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    i suppose that you are not concerned about how much weight the metal is going to add to your rig, right ? thickness neded would depend on what you plan on hauling in the bed really

    good luck
     
  6. cj7jeep81

    cj7jeep81 1/2 ton status

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    Thanks for all the replies. I'm not too worried about the weight (I figure a little extra in the back will help with traction). I plan on using this as a truck, so I want to be able to put pretty much anything in there that I can now. When I build the bed, I plan on replacing all the cross members on the bed with something stronger than stock. This should help with strength as well. I might even put in a little extra bracing underneath.
     
  7. cj7jeep81

    cj7jeep81 1/2 ton status

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    I am planning on making the bed floor out of either 10 or 12 gauge diamond tread steel. I am going to make a frame out of square tubing with plenty of re-inforcement.
    Now I'm trying to figure out how to mount the new bed floor to the existing bed sides. I am kinda thinking about getting some angle iron (maybe 3") and welding that to the bed floor. Then either welding or riveting that to the bedsides. Would this work Ok, or would there be a better way to do it?
     
  8. Resurrection_Joe

    Resurrection_Joe 1 ton status

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    You could just build a flatbed and skin it with the bedsides, may turn out easier
     
  9. cj7jeep81

    cj7jeep81 1/2 ton status

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    That's pretty much what I was planning on doing. The only thing I'm not sure of is how to skin it with the bedsides.
     

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