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A near perfect rear storage solution for under $150...

263234 Views 344 Replies 162 Participants Last post by  Datajockeys
I have been looking for a simpler solution to the rear storage of my recovery gear, and although many have described here some elaborate and handsome solutions, I have developed a simpler approach that took 2 hours and less than $150 to accomplish, and is completely reversible in seconds.

The system revolves around two fiber reinforced resin tubs. I found a bin that has a 200 pound capacity, is black, has straight sides, and is 10" high - just perfect for fitting under the elevation of the wheel well shelves from Gilmore-Kramer Company - Material Handling Equipment . The model number is 931000 and the cost is $54.68 each. Two of these boxes fit perfectly and leave enough room for access to the inverter. They fill the depth of the area from the rear seat backs to the door.

Next, a shelf of 3/4" scrap plywood needs to be cut to fit across the cargo area and sitting on top of the wheel well shelves. I templated the left side cutouts and scarfed the right side so the plywood was thinner at the edge to fit snugly under the subwoofer. I bought some "trunk liner" material from Automotive Trunk Liner "Black" along with some spray adhesive, and covered the plywood with the trunk liner material on both sides, taking time to wrap all the edges and placing the seams on the underside of the shelf. The shelf is held in place by the woofer, the tapered seat backs, and a snug fit against the left fender wall. Once in place, the tubs can be slid under the shelf like drawers, (without the hassle), and provide access to an enormous amount of storage. I hate putting stickers all over my rig, so my accumulated collection went onto the bins, and if I get tired of seeing them there, I can end for end the tubs. The tubs fit sungly, and the stock floor mat needs to be removed for them to fit - fortunately, it fits on top of the shelf just perfectly. It may be that in a rollover, the assembly would come loose, but I doubt it and generally try to avoid rollovers anyhow.

I have some pictures posted and will post the rest in a second post.....PM me if you have any questions, but it is so simple, most anyone can accomplish it with simple hand tools. Good Luck!



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Some more pictures:


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I really dig what you have done here. Even moreso than folks that did build a box. I believe your way provides a bit more flexibility, and a reconfigurable maybe sometimes I only want to carry just one bin and use the volume of the other bin for something else.

Top notch thread, IMO.

If you don't mind, can you offer us the dimensions of your cut...the plywood.
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The cheapskate in me really likes this idea, and I like the dimensions. If I did this, I might look for a way to strap down the plywood top, but this thread is getting book-marked for sure. Thanks for posting the details Rick.
Great idea with lots of flexibility! Job well done!!!
Nice Job Rick!
I love the finished look... I might just do this myself.
I like the flexibility aspect of it... that I can take the whole thing out if I need to and put it back in when I need it again.
Simple solution. Great, great work. Thanks for taking the time to photograph the setup and post pictures.
That's awesome. Nice job. I think I just found a project for this weekend.
I like the simplicity of this one! Looks great!
You are all very generous with your praise, but it is dumb luck mostly. I used to sell material handling equipment about a million years ago and I knew that boxes and bins come in all types of materials and all types of sizes and shapes....It was just a search for two or three bins that had the right size to 'fill the hole'! I got lucky with this find and the lady that sold me the bins was wondering why I only wanted two....I told her she might be getting some similar orders....but didn't tell her she looses sleep if a couple of you call and order them...Nancy was her name.

The ply wood started at 52" x 29 1/2" but was shaped pretty good to fit the contour on the left, and trimmed in length to 'just fit' I also forgot to mention that I rounded all the edges with a router to make the shelf interior friendly when installing ( the rear seat backs need to be forward to install the shelf.), and lapped the seams close to the edges so there was some additional fabric under the shelf at the point of contact with the interior plasctic. When the shelf is installed the rear seat backs need to be slammed to get them to latch - holds everyuthing in place.

I think there is the chance I will buy two more will hold my sailing gear and spares for the sailboat, and one for camping kit.

My black Lab loves the space, and with the headrests on the back seat raised, there is a perceived barrier that Maddie won't challange....I prop the rear window open with a twisted figure 8 chain link in the latch and she has plenty of air.

Actually, I can see the shelf being used all buy itself for groceries, etc....

Thanks again,
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Great Job...

Thanks for the Post and the do-it-yourself info !!!...
Way to go Rick. You get a rep for this. More homegrown innovation from our members. This is what's so great about our forum.
More praise coming from me. Everyone agrees that this is a great idea for rear storage. I'm seeing this on my to do list before my next trip...
hey i really like this set up.
wont leave a scar on the fj.
may be i can stuff a t shirt between the two tubs to prevent the rattling sounds or is it a very tight fit?
anyway thanks for sharing, this is definitely a very light and practical solution for road trip.

thanks again.
Like the simple do it yourself idea. Thanks for the excellent post and pictures.
I like it! Nice job. :bigthumb:
Outstanding! I have working on a design to weld up out of some sheet steel I have had laying around for a while. Your mod will probably work better and be a little lighter and hold everything I normally carry with me.
Good idea and thanks for posting.
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