Truck accessories are big business and for good reason. Whether for recreation or work, making a truck more useful also makes it more valuable to the user. There are hundreds of companies that specialize in this area, so finding the perfect setup can be tricky.
The best way to select the right items for your application is to do the research. First, identify your individual needs and look for solutions that fit those tasks. Second, working with a reputable truck accessory retailer and installation specialist is highly recommended. None of these items come cheap, so it’s best not to skimp on a high-quality installation.
Lloyd Hunt of Murrieta, CA is a truck owner who was looking for heavy duty truck bed upgrades and organization solutions that would haul everything.
Reasons for heavy truck bed upgrades
Hunt enjoys camping, fishing, hunting, and exploring the wilderness with his family and friends in his spare time. It pulls a 35ft trailer for any overnight or extended trips. His daily tow vehicle is a 2015 Ford F-250 Super Duty 4×4 riding on a 4-inch long-arm BDS suspension system with Fox 2.0 Performance Series monotube gas shocks. The truck also received performance upgrades to improve its towing capabilities and range.
When transporting the motorhome with family or friends, there is not enough storage space for all the necessary equipment. The truck owner found it difficult to get items in and out of the truck bed. It is therefore imperative to be able to maximize the space of the platform and to make it as efficient as possible. He said not only do we need to be able to secure items, but we also need to be able to create a modular way to store all the necessities a vehicle like this needs.
LTA Manufacturing Premium Truck Bed Upgrades
After scouring the internet, band forums and Youtube, Lloyd narrowed down his search. Landing on LTA Manufacturing, he selected the Icon/Premier Premium Cab-High Truck Cap from Ranch Fiberglass. This premium truck shell would house a LoadMaster StorMaster Combo Cargo Management System and a LoadMaster™ CapPack Cargo Management System.
Truck Icon Ranch Cap
Breaking down the product overview, the Ranch Icon Truck Cap from LTA Manufacturing is a highly rated truck shell with plenty of features. This includes tilting side windows, high quality paint and a solid honeycomb structure. It has a frameless rear door on outside hinges, a bespoke rear door valance and a lower rubber seal. The shell also comes with tinted windows, carpeted headliner and a third brake light.
Optional features include interior lighting options, remote keyless entry, optional roof rack system and front window options. And of course, the truck cap ships from the manufacturer with a custom paint finish that exactly matches the original OEM color specified by the VIN. All Ranch truck caps come with a limited lifetime warranty.
LoadMaster™ StorMaster Combo Cargo Management System
Seeking to optimize the organization, Lloyd ordered the LoadMaster™ StorMaster Combo Cargo Management System. This cargo management system easily slides in and out when fully charged for convenient use. It is a flexible and convenient storage solution with a weight capacity of 800 lbs. You can fit a variety of goods and tools inside the unit. Storage drawers are available as well as optional view dividers for optimal load management. Installation is a no-drill installation and fits snugly inside the Ranch Icon truck cap.
This system is ideal because it combines the two secure pull-out drawers below with the full-size pull-out tray on top. Drawer boxes open 100% to reveal all stowed cargo. The 57 inch wide deck can easily slide in and out when fully loaded for convenient use.
The sliding steel tray is an open space where extra gear, suitcases, coolers, spare tires, etc. can be stored. All of this setup will help you organize and pack gear for any adventure. It’s also a great way to get back from your monthly Costco transportation. The StorMaster Combo essentially allows several options for securing bulky cargo.
LoadMaster™ CapPack Cargo Management System
How to add even more storage? Well, the cleverly designed LoadMaster™ CapPack cargo management system utilizes the otherwise unused space above at roof level of the truck body. This lightweight aluminum storage compartment locks in a sturdy raised position. Hinged to a steel frame, the CapPack mounts to the top of the truck body. Ideal for storing lighter and longer items, it would be useful for securing and enclosing firearms, fishing rods and paddles.
The unit allows full use of the truck bed and features marine grade carpeted drawers, dual rotary latches with keyed locks, sealed rolling rollers and adjustable storage dividers. It is rated at a capacity of 100 lbs.
All LoadMaster, StorMaster and CapPack products use the same locking system. The entire ecosystem works in tandem with each other while keeping your gear safe, secure, and organized.
With everything installed, the truck will be much more useful with all the extra storage space to organize gear safely. Heavier items can fit in the lower pull-out drawers, lighter and longer items at the top in the CapPack, and then any larger odd-shaped gear on the pull-out tray. There is light in the hood of the truck and the rear door will use the same remote. locking system than the vehicle.
Order truck accessories
Convinced that these items would solve the problems Mr. Hunt had with loading and unloading equipment for each trip, he now needed to find a respected supplier to facilitate the installation. Using the “Find a Dealer” function on the LoadMaster website, several authorized dealers were presented. Going a step further, Lloyd contacted the manufacturer for recommended suppliers in his area. He was assured that the dealer network list was fully verified and fully capable. Never resting on his laurels, Lloyd researched customer reviews on Google and Yelp before making a final decision.
The supplier of choice became Pepe’s Truck Shell & Accessory Center, which boasts a 4.4 star rating with 35 reviews on Google. Pepe’s is owned by Pepe Gutierrez and is located at 236 Broadway Street in Chula Vista, CA. The company specializes in truck accessories such as covers, bed liners, towing upgrades, and more. Although it was a 90-mile drive for Hunt, he said their reputation for getting the job done right was the deciding factor.
Pepe’s helped order parts and accessories, making sure all details were correct, including vehicle color matching. Once the order was received and processed, the materials were all shipped to Pepe’s. The shop set a payout date that worked for everyone. When the day came, Hunt came down to have his new truck cap and accessories installed.
Installation of truck bed upgrades
Jose, Pepe’s son, explained the steps for installing the LoadMaster and the truck body. First, they clean the back of the truck and install the LoadMaster loading system mounting brackets. At the same time, one of them does this work, another starts the wiring. The wiring process connects the wiring for the lock system and lights to the truck body.
The LoadMaster sits above and in the bed of the truck using a forklift to lower it into place. Once everything is lined up and secured in hardware, they move on to the truck shell.
The hull receives a thorough cleaning and inspection before installation. Ticked as flawless by the manufacturer, it is ready to be mated to the vehicle. A forklift is again used to bring the shell to the truck and put it in place. When everything is lined up, the shell is secure and secured to the bed of the truck.
Once everything is packed, the team completes the electrical wiring and tests the doors, windows, lights and locks. As expected, everything went perfectly. The entire installation was planned for a full eight-hour day, but was completed in less than six hours.
Hunt loves the look of his truck with the all new accessories. “After doing the research, LTA Manufacturing came highly recommended,” Lloyd said. “The products are top notch and made from premium materials with the highest craftsmanship in construction. All of the accessories and options are what really take the package to the next level. The fit and the The finish is on point, and the color-matched shell looks like a factory addition. I’m really excited about the new look and utility features and can’t wait to take the family on the next adventure!