1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

KISS Drawers (Keep It Simple Storage) For 100 Series

Discussion in '100-Series Cruisers' started by cruzerDave, Aug 4, 2016.

  1. cruzerDave

    cruzerDave Land Shark Outfitters Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    797
    Media:
    1
    Likes Received:
    850
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2011
    Location:
    Bend, Oregon
    Please check out my website for current information: Land Shark Outfitters
    This thread is for 100-series owners to talk about their installs & mods.


    Introducing the Keep It Simple Storage (KISS) Drawers for 100 & 80 series Land Cruisers & LXs.

    KISS Drawers installed.png

    KISS Drawers- Xray.png

    This thread is intended to be a technical resource for potential buyers, and a place for owners to share their customizations. For sales please see the upcoming group buy, or my signature.

    These drawers were designed with specific goals in mind:
    1. Quality & Strength
    2. Minimize weight and cost
    3. Anyone can assemble without special skills or tools
    4. Ships in pieces as a flat-pack
    5. The best starting point for users to customize to fit their needs​

    1. Quality & Strength
    These are going in the gold standard of trucks for strength and quality, so these needed to match. The wood is Baltic Birch 7-layer plywood - the best plywood you can buy - learn more about it here: Ultimate Guide to Baltic Birch Plywood: Why It’s Better, When to Use It | Woodworkers Source Blog For strength data see the spreadsheet I uploaded in this post: Lessons Learned Designing & Building A Storage Drawer System. Top and front are 15mm (5/8"), drawer sides and bottom are 12mm (7/16"), and all cut on a CNC table for accuracy and repeatability - nothing would end up square if these were cut by hand every time.

    The skeleton for the drawers is T-slot extruded anodized aluminum. It is extremely strong for its weight, and allows easy, repeatable connections. These 1" bars have (4) channels the user can attach to for customizing (I'll post examples later in this thread) and are used for the main frame and for squaring and assembling the drawers:

    KISS Drawers- Extrusions.png

    The material has a yield strength of 35,000 lbs/in2 and if you were to place 500 lbs on top of one support, evenly between supports, and there were NO plywood there to help distribute the load, they would deflect only 1/16". There's 3 of them.

    2. Minimize weight and cost
    Weight and cost are direct results of design decisions. Settling on the extrusions was a huge help in reducing weight (the entire skeleton weighs only 12.2 lbs), but drove up cost: that skeleton costs $160 per set and there's no opportunity to reduce by volume or going to China (quality would suffer at these quantities).

    So once you select premium materials the best you can hope for is minimizing the amount of material and extras included in the product. Fortunately goal 5 was to provide a starting point for the user to customize, so these can work in harmony. An example would be flip up access to the sides. While some may want that while they are sleeping in the back, others would never use them as the back would be loaded with gear or have a fridge on top. Adding them would require hinges, structural supports, additional cuts, and assembly steps. Adding that cost and complexity into the build for some but not others was against goals 2 & 5, and not doing so is one of the big reasons why the overall build cost is so low.

    3. Anyone can assemble without special skills or tools
    I'll admit this gave me more problems than any other part of this project. While I (or you) may be comfortable driving a screw into plywood straight, and building the drawer 'box' square, not everyone is. I built the drawers 5 different ways with different joining systems before settling on what now seems obvious:
    KISS Drawers- corners.png
    It wasn't obvious getting here though, so you can benefit from my R&D now if you want to take the idea and roll your own - I spent $1,051 in R&D for these drawers (you're welcome;)

    Assembly is about as easy as an Ikea desk, so maybe 2 bananas - you need to follow the directions carefully at a couple points, but all you need is a screwdriver (I provide an allen wrench for some of the screws, they are only $0.80 so what the heck) a crescent wrench, and a couple of hours. Detailed instructions will be provided as well as a youtube video. Loctite is recommended if you bounce around a lot.

    4. Ships in pieces as a flat-pack
    This was an absolute necessity, as shipping costs on full drawers can be as much as the drawers (cheap ones anyway) and stories of damage are prevalent. Carriers are used to handling big flat boxes though, so this way you don't have to drive to Bend, Oregon to pick them up (tho I encourage you to use me as an excuse as there is some gorgeous wheelin around here;) Shipping dimensions will be around 61"x23"x5" and via FedEx Ground - no freight needed - from Oregon to NY is just $100.

    5. Be the best starting point for users to customize to their needs
    If you go read 100 threads on storage drawers you'll find 100 different approaches, priorities, and results. It took no time to see that building a system modular & comprehensive enough to meet all needs was going to put them well over $1000 and that was not what I wanted for myself, or for others. That is why this unit ships with only two handle options - with or without a cutout (and after enough orders that will likely settle on one of those). No finishes (see post below about those). No cubby hatches. No organizers. No modules. Just drawers, frame, top.

    The KISS drawers jump start your custom build, not define it
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2017
  2. cruzerDave

    cruzerDave Land Shark Outfitters Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    797
    Media:
    1
    Likes Received:
    850
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2011
    Location:
    Bend, Oregon
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2017
  3. cruzerDave

    cruzerDave Land Shark Outfitters Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    797
    Media:
    1
    Likes Received:
    850
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2011
    Location:
    Bend, Oregon
    This post is the subindex for FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQS) - for the full index of customizations see Customization Index


    Availability?
    I am producing them in batches to keep costs down. Check my signature for links to the current build and the preorder form.

    Cost?
    Price is $599 cash, picked up in Bend, Oregon or at an overlanding or cruiser meet somewhere if I'm able to go. Shipping & online payment (via PayPal) is a flat $145 in the US. I will ship to Canada but PM/email me for pricing.

    Dimensions?
    The top without wings is 42x42". Depending on the model installed into, the width varies but comes about 1/8 - 1/4" from your sides. The extra space is to allow customizations like liners and carpet, or adding hinges. Overall height is 10.25".The height was set by matching the height of the rear seats in a 100 series folded down to make a sleeping platform:
    KISS Drawers- seats folded.png

    KISS Drawers- seats gap.png
    That 2-3" gap while folded down will need to be spanned by a plate, water tank, mattress, or something as I don't think it's very comfortable otherwise. It could not be avoided, however, as you can see from the seat still upright. I left 1/4" for an upright seat to shift with a heavy passenger and not rub the platform as I did not want to risk damage to the leather.

    80 series will similarly need a spacer to allow sleeping:
    80 - level for seats down.png

    Drawer interior dimensions are 40 x 18.5 x 8" (x2) giving you a volume of 11,840 usable cubic inches (aka 194 liters)

    Total system weight?
    Everything all-in weighs just 104 lbs!

    How do they bolt down?
    100 series use U-bolts to the 3rd row seat brackets. I looked at using turnbuckles to the cargo D-rings but found them in my way of using the side spaces. Removing the rear seat brackets and going straight to frame was great, but too many people seem to like to retain the seat option so I left those alone. If you want to bolt into the frame though you need M10x1.25x50mm bolts. That said if you grab the top and try to shake the drawers the entire truck moves, so I think the U-bolts work well.

    NOTE! I have heard that some trucks did not come with 3rd row seat mounts so if yours does not have them do NOT buy these drawers unless you are prepared to design your own turnbuckle-based mounting method (minimal mods needed to be honest)
    80 series use bolts into the factory holes for the 3rd row seat brackets. The brackets stick up and if we used U-bolts would've focused all the weight on those 4 points and be less stable than sitting on the floor directly.

    Are they available with ___ style latches/handles/pulls?

    Nope. Cutouts or no cutouts. Handles and such can be highly individual and range from $10 to $110 and I'm not here to be in that business. The photo in post 1 shows a handle for comparison only. Check here for some options.

    Can I access my side storage compartments with these installed?
    Yes, even the bottle jack can be removed if you need it. Not easily, but with a little wiggling it will come out. If you look at the top profile you'll see I specifically notched this area for this reason.

    How easy are they to remove so I can put my seats back in?
    It's something you could do a few times a year, but I doubt you would want to every month or so. I would estimate it is a 30-60 minute job to insert or remove.

    Will you make a single drawer/60 series/Forerunner/Tacoma/generic set?
    Anything's possible, especially since I didn't even expect to be doing this;) Keep track of this thread and I'll post if/when I add other models. One of these days you can also check http://landsharkoutfitters.com (when I have time to put up a site)

    What's the maximum weight the drawers can hold?
    I'm not a structural engineer so not in any shape to do this calculation, but here are my drawers with my average carry - one for tools and recovery (strap is on the side), and one for camping & survival. They weigh 75-80 pounds each and the drawers don't even notice:
    KISS Drawers- Full.png
    I recommend under 85 pounds per drawer, but unless you're hauling spare cylinder heads doubt you'll get close in there.

    What's the limit for loading on top?
    I've transported 600 lbs of drawers on top to FedEx without a creak or groan. That said I recommend limiting to 400 pounds distributed evenly to ensure a good, long life.

    Why don't the sides flip up, aka 'hinged wings'?
    Many folks load the back of their truck up with gear, in which case you can't even get TO the wings to open them. Also, I have found during testing that it is only about an arm's length to reach in before you hit the fenderwells anyway, so I am able to store and access pretty easily from the front. That said, this drawer set is designed to be your starting point for what you want, and the side wings are ready for you to add hinges to however you want. If you do hinge them, pease post what you do for others to copy/tweak/learn from.

    That's it for now, I'll add more here from questions in the thread as it grows.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2016
    Scotch, JonD, nnnnnate and 2 others like this.
  4. cruzerDave

    cruzerDave Land Shark Outfitters Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    797
    Media:
    1
    Likes Received:
    850
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2011
    Location:
    Bend, Oregon
    This post is the subindex for INSTALLATION INSTRUCTIONS AND TIPS - for the full index of customizations see Customization Index

    Are there any tricky steps?
    Yes and No. The only critical step that can affect your successful assembly is the drawer assembly, specifically ensuring the bottom slots into the dado cut all the way around. if the bottom does not seat in the dado all the way, and the drawer sides 'bulge' a bit, the drawers will not slide well/at all. This is detailed int eh instruction manual with measurements you can do, so please read that section well, and measure twice *before* nailing the slides into the drawers: that locks things in place.

    If for some reason you need to pull the plastic off and redo, it is very possible, just go slowly removing the plastic slides. When reassembling a slide that has already been removed it would be best to nail into new holes of the wood by shifting the slide 1/4" forward from the original holes.

    Where are the instructions?
    If you want to pull out the instructions to review before breaking everything apart, this is where they are located in the flat packs:

    Screen Shot 2017-01-07 at 10.15.03 AM.png

    Screen Shot 2017-01-07 at 10.13.25 AM.png
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2017
  5. cruzerDave

    cruzerDave Land Shark Outfitters Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    797
    Media:
    1
    Likes Received:
    850
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2011
    Location:
    Bend, Oregon
    This post is the subindex for SLIDES - for the full index of customizations see Customization Index

    THE SLIDES THEY SHIP WITH
    I tested traditional drawer slides, bearings, and Ultra-High Molecular Weight (UHMW) slides. I took a poll of 27 likely buyers as to their feelings on the best way to open and close the drawers. We all came to the same conclusion, which happened to be the most expensive :)doh:) - UHMW.

    Now I've seen several drawers built that slide on top of strips of UHMW, with varying degrees of satisfaction, but finding these pieces that are specifically designed and extruded to work with the T-slot channels was my eureka moment for this project. If it hadn't been for the cost I would never have even asked the question what was best. These account for $85 of the build cost, but they're worth it.

    For those unfamiliar, UHMW is a super plastic. It is 'self-lubricating' like PTFE but with much more abrasion resistance, is used in armor, climbing equipment, as the surface for artificial ice rinks, and a whole lot more. The wiki article is a great read.

    The slides chosen are custom molded to fit the T-slot framework, and are extruded by the same manufacturer so are exact:
    KISS Drawers- Skeleton and sliders.png
    They are lighter (1.1 lbs vs 24 lbs for 2 good drawer slides), have no moving parts to gum up or rattle, do not slide open on their own on a hill like drawer slides, lock the drawers in place to eliminate shifting, and only take 3/16" on each side instead of the 3/4" for traditional slides.

    On that last item, the space isn't trivial. Saving 9/16" per side allows wider drawers: 4 sides * 9/16" is an extra 2-1/4" of drawer space. With drawers 40" long and 8" tall that's an extra 720 cubic inches of volume you get in your drawers because of these slides!

    And bonus - if you had a set of hydraulically actuated drawer slides you had really wanted to use, guess what, the KISS drawers are just your starting point so hack away - the UHMW slides didn't require any special design accommodations or cuts or drawer modifications and you can simply trim the parts down to meet your needs before assembling.

    Final note - I tested installing these with both screws and nails, and have found that (5) 2" 13 ga brads per side all the way into the drawer bottoms lock them in place perfect- I push down with all my weight on the drawer sides while someone else measured and we couldn't detect any movement of the slides. This is the one point i would reinforce though if you did want to haul more than my recommended 120 lbs per drawers - simply add nails until you meet your needs or comfort level.


    TRADITIONAL SLIDES
    For those interested in slides with very good quality at low cost here are the best I could find, and tested, at $76 for 4
    Screen Shot 2016-12-31 at 9.08.40 AM.png
    36" 250 lbs Full Extension Drawer Slide (Pair) - 250 Lbs Drawer slides - TCH
    If you are modifying the KISS Drawers to use these all you need to do is cut the drawer bottoms and backs down to accommodate your slides, and redrill the mounting holes for the drawer fronts.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2016
    bluecruiser and dogdaysindurham like this.
  6. cruzerDave

    cruzerDave Land Shark Outfitters Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    797
    Media:
    1
    Likes Received:
    850
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2011
    Location:
    Bend, Oregon
    This post is the subindex for FINISHING - for the full index of customizations see Customization Index


    Eventually I want a photo and a link to at least one each of the following:
    Bedliner
    Stain
    Paint

    Carpet (contributed by @Thunder90)
    I picked up the carpet at Lowes. Indoor/outdoor on the 12 foot roll. It was cheap at 46 cents per foot. Bought a can of 3M super90 and used that to apply the carpet. Once you cut the carpet, spray both the wood and the backside of the carpet. Let it tack up for 5-7 min. Press on. Work the edges good. If u use the super 90, u won't need staples. However you can use a staple gun and punch a few in for good measure. You can use the cheaper super 77 which is the lighter duty spray adhesive and that works too.


    Rubber mat

    What I am currently using and liking:
    KISS Drawers- rubber mat.png
    Cost was $36 from Amazon (Amazon.com: Rubber-Cal Diamond Plate Rubber Roll Garage Flooring: Sports & Outdoors) 1/8"x4'x5' and free Prime shipping. Cut it on the garage floor with the top as your guide and a box cutter - takes 3 minutes. Might use some spray adhesive to hold it down but for the moment sits pretty still.

    Note they also make this mat in a grey and a brown that might be a good fit for out interiors, but I have not tried so can not confirm:
    Amazon.com : Rubber-Cal Diamond Plate Metallic PVC Flooring, Beige, 2.5mm x 4' x 6' : Sports & Outdoors
    If anyone buys this can you please post a pic?
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2017
    JonD likes this.
  7. d5c5b

    d5c5b

    Messages:
    79
    Likes Received:
    40
    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2009
    Location:
    St. Petersburg, Fl.
    Dave, fantastic job! Yet another member contributing to the community with a great product!
     
    the stig, beno and cruzerDave like this.
  8. 2001LC

    2001LC

    Messages:
    4,176
    Likes Received:
    1,051
    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2007
    Location:
    Colorado
    Fantastic!
     
    cruzerDave likes this.
  9. Ramathorn15

    Ramathorn15 Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    1,072
    Likes Received:
    993
    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2016
    Location:
    The High Desert
    Looks great! As someone who has built drawers, they are no easy task. In theory, they seem easy to build, but they are quite the contrary. If I were considering building my own again but were hesitant based on the difficulty, I would definitely go with this option.

    Its nice to see an affordable option. That was 90% of what drove me to build my own.
     
    cruzerDave likes this.
  10. Jimthom

    Jimthom GOLD Star

    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    10
    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2015
    Location:
    WestWA, SoCal desert
    Excellent, excellent, excellent. The beauty of simplicity and great design.
    Thank you. Awaiting the Buyers' thread.
     
    cruzerDave likes this.
  11. Itsky

    Itsky

    Messages:
    105
    Likes Received:
    12
    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2006
    Location:
    El Dorado Hills, CA
    Wow! These are perfect! If I had a 100 series, I'd buy these in a hearbeat. Any chance a 4Runner or generic sizes will be made available? Really nice job!
     
  12. aaronrules

    aaronrules Coolest person you know! SILVER Star

    Messages:
    1,051
    Albums:
    2
    Likes Received:
    387
    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2012
    Location:
    Greenwood, AR
    I can't wait to get these installed!
     
    cruzerDave likes this.
  13. Jlanewrx

    Jlanewrx

    Messages:
    14
    Likes Received:
    17
    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2015
    Location:
    Colorado
    Need any more beta testers???
     
  14. CreeperSleeper

    CreeperSleeper SILVER Star

    Messages:
    6,476
    Likes Received:
    364
    Joined:
    May 16, 2005
    Location:
    Forest Grove, OR
    x2! I will be in Bend this weekend.
     
  15. abuck99

    abuck99

    Messages:
    1,514
    Likes Received:
    758
    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2015
    Location:
    ATL
    Post a reply to this thread when the group buy opens up. I want in.
     
  16. Newps

    Newps

    Messages:
    1,508
    Likes Received:
    71
    Joined:
    May 24, 2004
    Location:
    Costa Mesa, CA
    How is the system held in place? I know you said with u-bolts. Are the spanner ribs wood? If you could shoot a photo wire the drawers removed that might help. I have kids, my concern is with a sudden impact or rollover. I want to make sure that the items in the drawers stay there in a accident.
     
  17. billygoats

    billygoats

    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    64
    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2015
    Location:
    Pasadena, CA
    Id love to beta test also if possible! If not, keep me posted on the launch!
     
  18. suprarx7nut

    suprarx7nut The YotaMD Guy Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    542
    Likes Received:
    566
    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2010
    Location:
    Colorado
    Neat approach! We took two very different approaches to this challenge. The extruded UHMW is very clever for the slides. I haven't seen that before and I'm still not sure where you got it. I think you'll do well... until my buddy and I can get our *&!@ together to catch up! ;)

    Well done, Dave. Cheers.
     
  19. cruzerDave

    cruzerDave Land Shark Outfitters Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    797
    Media:
    1
    Likes Received:
    850
    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2011
    Location:
    Bend, Oregon
    Individual replies to y'all are coming first chance I get, bizzzzzzzyyyyyyy with this and upcoming trip to Germany, so thank you for your patience and support!
     
    tan-jeep, CreeperSleeper and Jlanewrx like this.
  20. LandCruiserPhil

    LandCruiserPhil Peter Pan Syndrome Supporting Vendor

    Messages:
    19,769
    Media:
    55
    Albums:
    3
    Likes Received:
    8,772
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Scottsdale Arizona
    What provision have been made to secure gear on top of the drawers?
    How are the drawers held in place?
     
    OregonB likes this.