Wooden Truck Bed Construction Process, Tips & Tricks
Within the farming community and many other places, flatbed trucks are becoming a huge thing. Wood made flatbed is great inexpensive stuff that is really convenient to use. These are way better than the stock steel versions according to many users.
The most flattering thing about this bed is that you can basically design it according to your wish. Building this yourself is so much more affordable than buying an expensive version. Also, making one will give the bed your own personal touch beside of saving money. More on truck bed covers here.
DIY Wooden Truck Bed
So, there are of course some steps and a few Useful Woodworking tools that you need for the DIY. Don’t worry, I’ll keep the explanation as simple as possible. I’m sure anyone into a little bit of woodworking would be able to do it without any worries. But also, I've got here a guide on woodworking for beginners. So, let’s go for it!
Materials You Need:
- Drill bit.
- 4-by-4-inch lumber
- 2-by-6-inch lumber
- Lag bolts
- Small square.
A Rough Plan Making
- If there is already a bed attached to your truck, use it for the plan. You can simply measure the sides for the plan too.
- This measurement will basically give you the exact bed size that goes with your truck. Using those dimensions, you’ll be cutting wood in the next step.
- Two parallel pressure treated frames are going to run long ways here. You need some huge bolts to fix the frames.
- Simply put the bolts through beams and holes. Now using the drill, you need to fix it into frame. There should be washers on both ends of the bolts. Same goes for thread lockers.
- Make sure you tightly fix the bolts. Otherwise, the whole thing might vibrate a lot. Now finish this step by including sidewalls of the truck bed.
Attaching Side Walls
- You would need two similar size wood for sidewalls. Also, you can simply have the measurement form old truck bed.
- Then, you are going to need the sidewall boundaries’ height. Use a similar measurement to cut wood into two equal walls.
- There should be some pocket holes. You can simply make 4 holes into the sidewalls and use it for attaching.
- Now you need to plane the holes before drilling. To ensure the spot of drilling pocket hole, you can simply use a pencil and mark it.
- Don’t mark the four holes at different distances. They need to be equal.
- Into the baseboard, simply drill some pilot holes. With another wooden board, you can align it during drilling.
- Now you need to adjust the bit collar. Simply put the bit into jig’s guide hole. To loosen the collar from bit, use an Allen wrench.
- You need to put the bit in any of the jig’s guide holes. Do this up to the tip. At the top end of bit, you should place collar. It should be sitting flush on jig.
- Simply tighten the collar to end this step.
- You need to take wallboard into the jig for this step. Make sure the marks are parallel with guide holes of jig.
- Now simply tighten the clamp. This will lock it into the place.
- Get the drilling machine and lock a bit. You will create some cleaner holes using the highest speed setting of your drill.
- Put the screw in your drill. Now carefully insert it through the pilot hole. Do so until this is securely tight. Similarly, tighten every screw.
Tailgate Fixing & Gluing Beams
- You need to cut the tailgates in a similar manner. Make sure they are equal to each other.
- Now simply attach them to bed with hinges. Attach the tailgate by installing hinges appropriately. That’s it, the tailgate is fixed.
- You are finished with hard steps once the main side beams are glued.
- A couple of 4*6s measurement long beams are going here. You need to cross them by six 4*4s.
- Don’t forget to apply pressure if the joints seem weak. Now simply glue the lag screwed and cross beams to each other.
- Sometimes, you make mistakes and so the DIY bed feels a bit larger than actual size. Well, you can simply make it a bit larger for a safe play.
- Then follow some bumper fixing rules to get the perfect dimensions. You may find fixing a bit hectic but that’s how the whole thing is usually.
Use a Decking
- Everything is almost done now. Simply put a choice of decking to complete the process. You can use a regular board for decking.
- Simply seal the board with polyurethane. Screw it down by placing it aligned. Get some good side trims. And you are done!
- For this step, it’s completely optional and up to you. You need a sealer, primer and color paint with a choice of brush.
- To get a uniform and good look, start with priming the wood. You should use a good coat of primer for the process. After applying the first layer let it dry completely. Once you figure out the first layer is all dried up, go for next one. Oil-based primer is best for long-lasting results.
- Now you will need a good quality brush and some paint. Use any choice of color you want to. Now loading the brush with enough paint goes for making small strikes over your truck bed. You should follow a similar manner to paint it up.
- Keep some time interval for each coating. You may need to apply around two to three layers of color depending on its quality. Wood painting is the most used and finest result-providing option.
- Now it’s time for some sealer coat. Don’t be afraid to go for up to three coats. Most of the time, polyurethane is used as a topcoat for paint. You should give it enough time to dry completely. Keep on going with the step until you get consistent results. Painting is Done!
Using Rubber Liner
- There are many users who like to use rubber liners for better protection. Using rubber liners for wooden bed will keep it free from scuffs, roughness, and scrapes.
- Use a thick and contoured rubber mat for the liner and make sure it lasts long. The rubber compound you choose should not crack with increasing temperature. Also, it should not fade in exposal to the sun.
- Installation is super simple with a quality truck rubber bed mat. Choose the ones that come from a reliable manufacturer and would survive at least five to ten years.
- Cut-out rubbers, however, lasts for three to four years. Also, some factors will decide the life span of truck mats such as weight, frequency of hauling cargo and type.
You should do the painting and coating steps in enough ventilation.
Always gear up safely for such DIYs. Wear protective goggles, gloves, and mask while using power tools.
Be sure to safely handle blade related tools.
If you are completely unaware of doing such DIYs, have someone experienced by your side for safe play.
No matter if you need a truck bed as a replacement to your old one or simply get it as the very first, this DIY version will do justice. Also, remember that no matter what material you use, metal or wood, the bed will get damaged someday.
So, if you are seriously needing a good layer of protection for your truck, I think buying one will be an ideal option. However, using the DIY bed as a spare one or for a short period of time is really not a bad idea.
Wooden truck beds are cheapest and durable comparatively, no doubt. Simply enjoy the benefits with this DIY process. Best of Luck!