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Discussion Starter #1
I am in the process of making a custom flatbed for my Promaster chassis cab (not your typical Promaster story.) The first step has been to fabricate a frame extension with integrated outriggers for the compact crane that I will mount on the back right corner (see pictures). I want the bed to be as low as possible, so I decided to extend the structure INSIDE the existing frame of the truck, rather than bolting it on top of the frame, as is typical. The flatbed will be just slightly higher than the frame rails.

The pictures show the test-fitting process. More to come . . . .
 

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Discussion Starter #5
http://www.rambodybuilder.com/2015/van/docs/vf/far.pdf

Looks like you've been down that road before, I am curious whether you'd dredged through the OEM chassis modification guidelines...

I hope you do a 'POR-15 Metal Prep' Zinc treatment before priming that chunk of Iron, doesn't take very long and it lasts a long while...

I had already reviewed the frame modification documents carefully, but, if I had not seen it before, I would have needed it. So, thanks for the link.

I have done plenty of metal fabrication before, but I have not modified a truck frame. I'm stumbling my way through it, trying to do it in a structurally-sound and safe manner.

I haven't used POR-15 before, but I'll look into it.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Wheel Well Measurement Needed

I am preparing to make the side boxes and wheel wells for the custom bed for my PM chassis cab. Can someone please check a measurement for me? I would like to know the interior height of the rear wheel wells in the PM van, as indicated in the attached diagram. I think it should be about 11", but I want to double-check so that my wheel wells will not rub the tires when the truck is fully loaded. Thanks!
 

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http://www.rambodybuilder.com/2015/van/vf/vfrsd.pdf <--- rear suspension detail for 2015's ". ..include a maximum play of 10mm in relation to tire (without chains) in conditions of asymmetrical jolting.. ."

http://www.ramtrucks.com/en/bodybuildersguide/2015/rampromaster/ <-- source

The measurement requested in my 159" with ~300lbs of flooring and insulation etc. is 13-5/8"ish from steel floor ribbing tops, add 5/8" as seen in photo for plywood floor & EPDM roof membrane sound damper.... Apologies for that photo, wrestling with tweaky iphone at -2° at 6AM be glad you got that :rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Thanks for the information and measurement, Zoomyn. I based my CAD drawings on the rear suspension detail from the Ram Bodybuilders site, but that diagram is a little confusing. It is a little hard to see exactly how far up the tire would move in an uneven loading situation (since it would come higher than an even loading situation). It helps to have a "real world" measurement as a reference. I am assuming that the wheel wells are the same size in all models of Promasters, for ease of manufacturing, even though the actual movement zone of the wheels may be a little different.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I'm now in the process of attaching the center section of the bed. I decided to take advantage of the spaces between the frame cross-members by adding some inset storage compartments. They will have hinged covers.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
A couple of days ago I test-fitted the left side box and fender. I'm getting closer to having a functional truck . . . .
 

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MMXVI - L2H2 in IN
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With removable wheel wells you could slide something like a Tonke Camper on that.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
With removable wheel wells you could slide something like a Tonke Camper on that.
That's an interesting idea, but the wheel wells will be structurally significant, so they will be welded in place. This truck will be used primarily as a work truck, but if I decide to do some camping, I have the sides and roof of a cargo box that I built years ago for a different flat-bed truck. I can probably adapt it to fit this truck. It won't be as nice as a Tonke Camper, but it will be a shell to keep me dry. :)
 

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I'm going to go out on a limb here and say you probably played with Lego's and a Meccano set as a kid... Your work is impressive and shows that there is a lot of creative thought going into it. You should be proud of your results.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I'm going to go out on a limb here and say you probably played with Lego's and a Meccano set as a kid... Your work is impressive and shows that there is a lot of creative thought going into it. You should be proud of your results.
I STILL play with Legos occasionally. :laugh: It can be kind of meditative. I never passed along my kids' legos after they grew up. It kind of bugs me that the Lego company has placed so much emphasis in recent years on pre-designed kits, with specialized parts. I think it leaves kids feeling that their own unique creations aren't as good.
 

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MMXVI - L2H2 in IN
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Did you have to relocate the exhaust system and e-brake cable to accommodate the storage compartments?

What's the depth of the storage compartments?

Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Did you have to relocate the exhaust system and e-brake cable to accommodate the storage compartments?

What's the depth of the storage compartments?

Thanks
No, the exhaust wasn't a problem (though I won't store my chocolates directly over it :)) and each storage compartment is a different depth, depending on the various obstacles I needed to avoid.
 

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Really cool project. Sure don't see many FWD flatbeds out there. What's the end goal -- do you have a drawing or a picture you refer back to for inspiration when you get hung up?
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Really cool project. Sure don't see many FWD flatbeds out there. What's the end goal -- do you have a drawing or a picture you refer back to for inspiration when you get hung up?
I did the design work in a CAD program. It was quite helpful in figuring out how parts would fit together, but still, I have had to disassemble and re-make a lot of parts. (Purple is the existing truck frame. I left the central bed layer "off", so you can see.)

The end goal is an open flatbed, with a crane on the back, right corner. I'll have removable sides which will probably stay on much of the time.
 

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