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How to Install a Crane to the Pickup Truck Bed?

Views: 125     Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 2019-08-29      Origin: Site

If you are going to use your truck to haul lumber, piping and other heavy cargo, you need a way to load it up to the truck bed. Therefore, many pickup truck owners install crane on the truck bed. We have asked our friends who have installed crane and have found out the best way to install and reinforce truck bed crane.

How to install truck bed crane? Weld or bolt a long plate of iron at the bottom of the truck bed right under the crane base and bolt the base of the crane with the plate. The plate under the bed is either bolted or welded with the truck frame itself.

Your truck bed crane is most likely to come with with a pair of angle brackets and a metal plate to fix the crane to the truck bed. The angle brackets go under the truck bed and the base of the crane is bolted on the metal plate. However, it may seem enough but in the long run, you will find your truck bed bend and uneven, especially if you are carrying heavy lumber. You need to reinforce the crane with some additional metal work so that it lasts longer, without putting much pressure on the truck bed itself.

Here’s How You Can Install and Reinforce Truck Bed Crane

You can get some of the best pickup truck cranes under $100 and can easily lift at least 500 pounds. The crane already come with a thick base plate. But it basically bolts on the sheet metal of the truck bed which is not a wise option if you are going to use it every day and for heavy loads. They do come with angle plate that goes under the bed, but it’s not enough to keep the crane in place for a long time. The strongest part of the truck is the frame. So, you have to find a way to bolt it to the frame itself. This will bring the pressure of the crane on the truck frame and not on the bed sheet metal.

You can place the angle frame under the truck bed either in right angle triangle or parallel to each other. Keep at least one of the angle frame near the rim of the truck bed. Then bolt the crane base to the bed and the angle plate underneath to secure the crane. If you want you can drill out custom holes to suit your needs. This is the usual way to install the crane. But as you lift heavy loads, you will see your truck bed flex and may even rip off. To solve this problem, you need to reinforce the angle plate that goes underneath the truck bed.

You can weld the angle brackets to a solid iron bar that is long enough to reach and fix to the truck frame. You need at least two iron bars which will be welded to the angle plates on either side. Both the iron bars should be bolted first to the truck bed sheet. So, you have to drill the truck bed as well the corresponding bars beforehand. If your truck bed is not flat, instead has a raised surface, you can use an additional metal plate as washers. Now place the angle brackets under the truck bed where the reinforced iron runs to the truck frame where it is welded in place.

Another way to fix the crane is on the sides of the truck bed wall. It’s possible only if the crane is short and can rotate to rest in the truck bed wall when not in use. But fixing it on the side is risky as it may damage the wall; moreover, there is no way to reinforce. Here’s a 1/2 ton capacity pickup truck crane.


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