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The Bed is Cracking

TL;DR - I found two cracks in the bed of the truck, likely from the weight of the RTT bouncing around up there. I'll need to fix them and come up with a way to reduce/change the stresses in the future.

Just before our last few trips, I discovered that the bed of the truck was cracking in two places. The first was at one of the locations where the bed rack attaches to the bed rail - a crack had formed along the inside edge of the rail. The second was in the front corner of the bed - between the front and the passenger sides of the bed.

I've got a feeling this is happening because of the weight of the tent rocking back-and-forth (and up-and-down) as the truck goes over rocks. My increasing speed over the last couple years probably hasn't helped the situation.

I think there are two problems - which I obviously plan on addressing.

  1. I think the crack on the bed rail is due to some High Density Poly Ethylene (HDPE) rubber that I have installed between the bed rack and bed rails in order to reduce metal-on-metal rubbing. The side effect of this is that the rubber compresses slightly as the tent moves up-and-down over bumps, putting stress on the bolt hole rather than the top of the bed rail. Over time, this has resulted in stress in the metal at that point.
  2. The crack in the corner of the bed is likely due to the weight (and momentum) of the tent moving side-to-side over bumps and around turns. As it pushes and pulls on the sides of the bed, those stresses are transferred to the corners, causing one of them to crack.

Stay tuned for work in this area - I've already got a couple solutions in mind and in progress!


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Body (and Bed)(26 entries)
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