The guys over at ToolBoxBuzz and A Concord Carpenter got their hands on our DECKED storage system and decided to do a review on the installation as well as a video for their Youtube channel with their impressions on how it works. Check out contributing editor, Scott Arnold's review below and subscribe for all kinds of construction tips and tool reviews.
DECKED – Truck Bed Storage Solution
Original Article Published: ACONCORDCARPENTER.COM
By Scott Arnold on Tool and Product Reviews
I don’t think that the importance of tool organization in your truck, trailer or van can be overstated. Think about how much time and energy goes into looking for tools in messy and unorganized trailers, trucks or vans. That time should be time spent on task and not looking for your tools. That is where Decked truck bed tool box comes in.
Dis-Organization Costs Money
Lets say on average you are charging $75 an hour for your services. At the beginning of your day it takes you 30 minutes to load up the tools you are going to need for that day. Fast forward to the end of the day and it takes you 30 minutes to unload the same tools because tomorrow you are doing a completely different task. That is one hour of your day unproductive.
So one hour lost per day [$75], per 5-day work week [$375] per year is [$19,000]
Never mind the money you might spend on buying a tool you already have but because you forget it at the shop or your house.
This is where the DECKED Truck Bed Toolbox System really fits in perfectly. DECKED was established in 2013 after nearly three years of research and development.
DECKED is a two pull out drawer system that offers ideal storage for your tools, hunting / fishing gear, or camping equipment or a combination of all three. It is constructed out of high density polyethylene material, on a steal frame. The DECKED system is made in the USA and backed by a three year warranty.
First Impression – Men Don’t Read Instructions!
The DECKED Truck Bed Toolbox system arrived by a freight carrier and was securely packaged. The large box was secured to a pallet and dropped into my garage. Upon opening the box I noticed that the materials were well organized and labeled for easy identification. The instructions were easy to understand and were funny as hell, as they joke with you about doing it right, and reading them correctly. Once unpacked and organized installation began.
The DECKED instructions say solo installation is possible, however having a buddy handy is a smart idea. There are a few parts were some heavy lifting is required. The instructions are straight to the point.
Installation took us about 2 to 2-1/2 hours. One of the daunting tasks that needed to be done was the removal of the truck bed tie downs. The truck had a sprayed in bed liner so the material was in the torx head screw. After those tie downs were removed we added the provided tie down brackets that accepted the j-hooks. DECKED provides shims that needed precise placement on the liner prior to installing the system.
Once these two steps were completed we could get into the main part of installation. Drilling out drain holes in the ammo can was the first step. Attaching the ammo cans to the steal “C” channels were very easy and was achieved using a ratchet.
DECKED was very specific about starting with the driver’s side first. Even telling you that in Europe they drive on the other side of the vehicle!
Setting up the drawers was simple enough and did not require much time. After the drawers were set up installing the front wheels was probably the most challenging task. It was hard to get a 7/32 hex key in such a tight spot to secure the wheels.
After the finishing touches were added; the chrome ruler, locking mechanisms, DECKED bottle opener and the dividers, you’re ready to put together the D-Boxes. The D-Boxes are really rugged and easy to assemble. They have a thick rubber gasket you install to make them water tight. The handles and the latches snap into place and you’re ready to load them up!
Difficulties During Installation
There are a few difficulties worth mentioning during installation. Having the correct tools and reading the instructions are your best bet, but we felt that talking about these issues in this article will better arm you when you decide to install your DECKED Truck Bed Toolbox system.
During the J-Hook installation, the instructions tell you to tighten them down alternating from ammo can to ammo can to ensure you are not tightening down one side greater than another. Great instruction but what happened was it made it difficult for the drawers to close once they were installed.
After speaking with a DECKED representative he told me to loosen up the J-Hooks (not completely) and to let the system sort of float for a day while driving. This allows the top deck and rails to sort of “fall into place.” Once it had settled, I went back and re-secured the J-Hooks and drawers were smooth in closing.
Like mentioned earlier in this article the front wheels were probably the hardest step to complete. The small area to work in, coupled with trying to hold up the drawers was challenging. It would be nice if there is a way for the wheels to be installed in an earlier step to eliminate some of this hassle.
The locking mechanism was another tedious task. The threaded barrel sits nicely in the lock hole, but the washer and nut was hard to get on all of the treads. Access in the small channel was tough with large hands. DECKED recommends needle nose pliers, but it was still tough. Once the washer and nut were secured the remainder of the steps were simple.
TIP – next time I’ll try a deep socket.
Using the DECKED Truck Bed Toolbox
I’ve been using the DECKED system for little over a month now and I’m extremely pleased. They say April showers bring May flowers and boy are they right. At first I was concerned that my tools would get wet. Its rained a ton here and the DECKED system has kept my tools completely dry!
Customizing the DECKED Toolbox
I’ve outfitted my DECKED Truck Bed Toolbox system to best suit my needs. There is no wrong way to organize your system. In the driver’s side drawer is where I keep my every day go to power tools.
- Reciprocating saw
- Circular saw
- 3 chargers
- Bits, blades and discs
I have a section of the draw dedicated to cleaning products and extension cord. I have some Lysol wipes, trash bags, protective plastic, gloves and tape.
Behind those items I utilize one of the DECKED D-Boxes with what I call overflow tools. These are tools that I normally keep in my bags but always seem to walk away or get misplaced. I tuck the D-Box in the back because its not something I am always going for.
Using The D-Boxes – Added Protection
The D-Boxes are useful for some specialty tools that I wanted to add another layer of protection to. such as, my batteries. I take this box in and out daily and charge the batteries at night. I still have plenty of room for more delicate tools.
Another crew member, Mike Valente also uses the DECKED storage system in his pickup. Mike was able to put 30 pieces of 3/4″ plywood on top of the DECKED with zero issues. On average each piece of plywood is about 55lbs. Multiply that by 30 and you are looking at 1,650 lbs with no problems. Damn that’s RUGGED!!!
Who doesn’t love accessories? The DECKED system comes with some pretty neat accessories. These are add ons and tack on additional costs.
- D-Boxes (D-Box and Cross Box)
- Core Trax 1000
- T-Track Rack Mount
The Core Trax 1000 is a nice feature that allows you to tie down your equipment on top of the DECKED system. Due to the loss of height from the DECKED system, there is a need to tie down items to prevent them from falling out of the truck. The tie downs run along a track system which allows you to move them to your desired position.
Types of D-Boxes
Decked offers two types of D-Boxes;
- Cross Box
The D-Box is the larger one and takes up a large space in the draw. The D-Box measures at 20.5″ W x 17.5″ D x 8″ H. and weighs approximately 8.56 lbs.
The Cross box is the smaller of the two and fits across the decked system. The Cross Box measures at 10.75″ W x 17.5″ D x 8″ H. and weighs approximately 5.5 lbs.
Both boxes need to be assembled and have and rubber gasket leaving the boxes completely water proof. The handles are etched nicely with the DECKED logo, and the latches are easily installed.
Overall Impression – DECKED Truck Bed Toolbox System
Undoubtedly the most frustrating part of my day was trying to organize tasks I needed to perform on the job-site. Do I need this, will I need that? Having tools sit in my garage while I needed them on the job-site was costing me money.
Whether it was leave and go get them, or go buy a new one, time off the job was costing me. The DECKED system, allows me to keep my tools in one place and not worry. Organization is very important and more time on task, means happier clients, deeper pockets and more peace of mind.