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Not sure what forum this goes best in. It's not generation-specific and is related to towing/hauling so I'll put it here. I picked up a rooftop cargo box from Craigslist a decade ago for $100 to use with a previous vehicle, and then never needed it. It's a Karrite 1300, which was made by Thule and sold I think at places like Sears. It's about 37x54x16 and fits just about perfectly in the short bed of the Frontier. It sat around in the basement until last summer when I got the Frontier and needed a secure-ish way to carry things in the bed, but didn't (and don't) have the money or desire for a camper shell. I had read a post about making your own utilitrack cleats using hardware store items and realized I could DIY them with the cargo box to hold it in place. The box locks, and the tailgate locks, but someone could pick up the box out of the bed if I just set it in there, and it could bounce around. I sealed up the previous mounting holes in the bottom with some Gorilla Glue epoxy and then covered that on both sides with Gorilla tape. I drilled new holes the width of the utilitrack rails and threaded the cleats through, making sure to drill the holes just smaller than the diameter of the bolts so there's no gap for water to enter. It's not perfect, and takes a bit of wiggling to get the cleats to turn and engage, but it was cheap, easy, and effective at holding the box in place. The wingnuts can loosen after lots of rough roads and bouncing around so I check and retighten them every time we pitch camp or have to open the box. We've driven through and let it sit through some strong downpours and there's never been a drop of water inside. Anyway, here are some pics of the setup.


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2020 PRO-4X, Icom IC-229H ham radio, 4K front and rear dashcam, Leer canopy
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Great idea! Did you give any thought to mounting the container at the level of the side utili-tracks so you'd have the bed for other stuff?
 

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My Thule box uses the clamp system that tightens from inside the box, it's adaptable to square, round and aero bars. Thus I think I would have simply mounted some basic Super Strut with the T nuts across the bed, attached to the UtiliTrack then clamped to the cross struts. As if you had roof top cross bars.
 

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2020 PRO-4X, Icom IC-229H ham radio, 4K front and rear dashcam, Leer canopy
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My Thule box uses the clamp system that tightens from inside the box, it's adaptable to square, round and aero bars. Thus I think I would have simply mounted some basic Super Strut with the T nuts across the bed, attached to the UtiliTrack then clamped to the cross struts. As if you had roof top cross bars.
That was what I was thinking. Maybe double up on the uni-strut if it wasn't rigid enough. I'm tinkering with a pull out platform idea. Getting too old to jump up in back.
 

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this is what I have currently, I have had many different versions, but this is the best. I’m using a Yakima rack,mounted to a short piece of superstrut, that is mounted to the side Utilitracks, I have the full bed under the rack. A Thule ski box and bike carrier on each side. Before I used one of the floor utilitracks and a side one leaving 2/3 of bed with full height. I had a tonneau before, and got rid of it after a year and half without using it, using this setup instead. How everything is on top of bed, if I put something big in the bed, it can’t be taken out with bed locked. Maybe I should do a build post.
 

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That was what I was thinking. Maybe double up on the uni-strut if it wasn't rigid enough. I'm tinkering with a pull out platform idea. Getting too old to jump up in back.
Single piece of uni-strut would easily be stiff enough, likely stiffer than the typical roof top cross bars these boxes are typically clamped to.
 

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View attachment 348442

this is what I have currently, I have had many different versions, but this is the best. I’m using a Yakima rack,mounted to a short piece of superstrut, that is mounted to the side Utilitracks, I have the full bed under the rack. A Thule ski box and bike carrier on each side. Before I used one of the floor utilitracks and a side one leaving 2/3 of bed with full height. I had a tonneau before, and got rid of it after a year and half without using it, using this setup instead. How everything is on top of bed, if I put something big in the bed, it can’t be taken out with bed locked. Maybe I should do a build post.
The nicest thing about this setup is neither the box nor the bike rack are too high to make it hard to access. Some of these ladder rack systems, Thule and Yakima as example, who make VERY expensive such systems, place the cross bars at 18" or 30" above the bed sides. Even 18" up is a height I wouldn't want to be lifting a 30 lbs mt. bike onto. Only advantage to those systems is you can often find either a retractable bed cover (Pace Edwards) or use a rolling vinyl cover with them. Using the Utilitrack method means no bed cover unless you come up with something very clever.
 
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