Securing a tool cabinet in the van. | MotorhomeFun | The Motorhome Support and Social Network

Securing a tool cabinet in the van.

Nov 11, 2019
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I've got around half a dozen cabinets similar to this one -

I'm considering installing one or more in my van, as ii quite enjoy fixing things - including the van. I'm after some tips and advice about the installation. Obviously the first thing to do would be to remove the wheels, but would you leave it free standing,or bolt it to the floor? How about a two level one? I've got a smaller cabinet that fits on top of a base - would that be safe to use? There is a bit of a lip around the top of the base to stop it sliding. I don't have any keys, so I need to stop the draws opening whilst travelling. Would you just replace the locks, or try to install some sort of strapping system?

Another consideration is the possible fumes and associated health issues. I need to carry a range of tools, so I will have these considerations whatever I do. I thought that using a cabinet would be better, as long as I keep the tools clean of course. In the mid term, I would like to keep fluids under the van, and not in the living area,
 

pappajohn

LIFE MEMBER
Aug 26, 2007
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That's really going to add serious weight once it's got tools in for no real reason.
I can't find a cabinet weight but each drawer can carry over 40kg so it must be substantial.

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Nov 19, 2019
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I'm sorry, are you making a van to live in our a mobile workshop? As for fumes, look online for the safety data sheet /SDS for any chemicals you have and it will list any hazards.
 
OP
Wild Brambles
Nov 11, 2019
431
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I need the tools for a variety of reasons- I want to be self-sufficient for a start, but more important is the fact that I need to clear and tidy 8 garages full of stuff, These include vintage motor cycles and stationary engines for a start. I've tried keeping the tools in various garages, but the one I want is always in another garage.

As long as I'm sensible, the weight shouldn't be a problem. Additional weight doesn't seem to affect fuel consumption much in an LDV convoy.

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Aug 9, 2011
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Sortimo van racking. I had my Trafic van set up with the stuff when I used to be a plumber. It lasted for about 15 years until I retired and it now graces my workshop. Locking drawers etc. Just the very thing.
 

68c

Oct 22, 2019
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With regard to the tools and weight.

Perhaps look at the way 6 day trials motorcycliststs used to do things.
Every tool drilled to reduce weight.
Only have tools that actually fit your vehicle.
If one end of a spanner fits nothing, cut it off. If two like it, weld them together.
Can any tool do two jobs? Jack handle can be used as an extension to a ratchet for instance.
Ditch any 3/8 drive, use 1/4 and 1/2".
They even used to weld tabs onto retaining nuts so they acted as a captive nut, less spanners needed.
Cloth tools rolls rather than steel boxes, can be stowed low down in odd places.
Tools not used very often also in plastic bag and tied to the chassis.

I think you get the idea.

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Oct 2, 2008
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Have you done a proper audit of your van weight , as this might drastically affect what quantity of tools you need to store ?
 

68c

Oct 22, 2019
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Further to your toolbox fitment.

If you do decide to fit the box consider security. I would suggest bolted down, also suggest covering it in a fake caravan style cabinet so not so obvious it is a toolbox. If it is already in a cupboard put a false wall in front of it. Do not tell too many folk you are carrying a lot of tools. Thieves often break into vans to get tools for the next break in, they just take pry bars, screwdrivers etc.
 
OP
Wild Brambles
Nov 11, 2019
431
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So many replies - thanks guys.

I like the security comment, The fake cupboard wouldn't work for me, but a formica worktop with curtaining would be useful, and would serve much the same purpose. I haven't got windows in the back doors, or in the back half of the load area, but it would be exposed when the back door was open.

I usually lookat my exit weight when I run in light iron, and I've usually got a good safety margin.

I don't fancy weakening any tools, so I won't try weight reduction there, but thanks for the idea. I'm in and LDV, so I've got a 3 foot torque wrench for 3/4" sockets. :) Also, I need Whitworth and A/F for some of the stuff I do. I might take your suggestion though, and put those in the smaller tool chest, and then I can load them in when I need them. The main tool chest is for my self-sufficiency as a prepper durng the imminent economic crash.

I think my 36mm socket is in Walton-on-Thames and I was in Portsmouth. The diesel to collect it would have cost more than the socket on Amazon. No porn mags I'm afraid, unless you count MG TC workshop manuals as porn. :)

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Dec 12, 2010
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Haven't checked out the ad, but some cabinets specifically say that they haven't to be fitted in vehicles, think they don't like getting rattled about ?

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OP
Wild Brambles
Nov 11, 2019
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Hey nothing rattles in an LDV. I liked the suggestion about putting tools in plastic bags in the drawers, and I might do that.
 
OP
Wild Brambles
Nov 11, 2019
431
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Van conversion
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its an LDV and you don't see many of them still running.:unsure:
You still see quite a few walking.

Some of the spare can be difficult to get, and that is why it is worth finding out which alternative vehicles use them. Ford Mondeo/Transit, and Freelander parts seem to be used on my van. Another problem results from the fact that many are sold for exports, often just for the parts.

The main problems seem to be rust, and water leaks. The gutter under the windscreen, and the front wheel arches are common rust points. Many of the water leaks are caused by neglecting to clean out drain channels and holes. However, I've seen worse rust on Transits and Sprinters that people are restoring.

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Mar 8, 2016
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My 'travel' toolbox is 23 KG and very small . Its also very full. It will fit in a side locker with my generator, but you have to remove it to get anything out of it, which is not a problem. I wouldn't put a roll cab ( wheels on or other wise) in anywhere because the drawers are designed for bigger stuff. I have a separate Stanley plastic stacker on wheels for all my spare parts and lubes and sprays etc, Far too bulky , but I can find everything easily, and it lifts out when I don't need it.
For travel work , you cant beat the old cantilever boxes IMO.
 
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68c

Oct 22, 2019
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Southampton
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Is this intended to be van you will work from? I ask as punters will be more impressed by what looks like a workshop on wheels rather than some chancer with a load of rusty car boot tools. The tidy organised space will help convey your professionalism giving folk confidence to use you. So although I think roller cabs are not ideal for vans due to weight and wasted space they may have a place in your case.

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Jul 29, 2013
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68c he has not been on since 15/01/2020 I believe he is banned temporarily?😊
 
Jul 29, 2013
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He is not banned, he chooses not to log in. That could be for any number of reasons.
Thanks Jim i was only referring to comments about him earlier in another thread they were obviously incorrect👍

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