Bed access panel modification - Ford Muscle Forums : Ford Muscle Cars Tech Forum
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-24-2012, 11:30 PM Thread Starter
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Bed access panel modification

Hi all, I have a 65 Ranchero and I was thinking of customizing the bed access panel. I want to remove the screws and make it open either with struts or an electric lift. I would probably make a new access panel with a lightweight metal frame and a flat piece of aluminum. Anyone done this, or have suggestions? I have a pretty good picture in my head, but not sure how to hinge it.

I don't know how useful it would be since accessing whatever is in there would still require climbing into the bed. I just think it would be cool.


Thanks,
Mike
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-25-2012, 12:07 AM
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Post Re: Bed access panel modification

HD piano hinge. I have a buddy who bought a '57 that had this done.

I would be concerned about water getting to the bottom pan though.

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-25-2012, 02:17 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Bed access panel modification

Thanks KULTULZ. Got pictures? I am not worried about water, I have a tonneau cover, I don't think I get any water in the bed. I don't drive it in the rain and very minimal amounts when I wash it.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-25-2012, 02:55 PM
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Re: Bed access panel modification

I have seen one 65 done that way. The guy hinged the front edge. Added gas struts to support and help lift the panel. Just enough so it would stay up and not hit the Protect-o-top yet have access to anything stored in there. I think he used d-zuse fasteners or something similar to anchor it down so it didn't rattle. He removed the center sheetmetal support and added a length of aluminum angle to the underside of the panel for support so the panel doesn't sag in the middle. I am considering doing something similar.

Have also seen one setup where the panel was hinged the opposite way.

Have also seen one setup where that panel was cut and the battery relocated there with just a partial cover over the battery.

With a cap on the bed water isn't an issue but it's still a good idea to make sure there are drain holes in the floor pan just in case.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-26-2012, 09:25 AM
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Re: Bed access panel modification

I saw an El Camino that was hinged and he used a remote hood latch to keep it closed with the release knob in the cab.
As far as getting water just make sure what ever you put in there can stand a little moisture, they don't seal even when screwed down. Mine had a 5 gallon bucket worth of sand in there when I pulled it off.
Mike
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-29-2012, 10:16 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Bed access panel modification

Thanks, I was thinking of hinging the cab side, so that it opened in the same fashion as the tonneau cover. I now have more ideas for hinges, struts and latches.... not sure if that's a good thing or not!

In the well under my bed cover, I have an amp for my sound system, and that is where my battery is located. I know it stays dry under there.

Thanks!
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