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Old 08-08-2005, 03:26 PM   #1
herbvogt
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Cool Baja bed cover - making my own

After looking at all of the available bed covers for the Baja and getting the run around from Subaru about the 05 turbo-leather bed cover, I have decided to make my own. I like the OzzBros split cover. A local dealer had one and when I saw it I just couldn't put out $500+ for it.

I made a template for the cover, first out of card board, then fiberboard. I plan to buy marine plywood, closed-cell foam and heavy duty vinyl to make the final cover. I don't plan to have a lock and key on the outside (top) of the cover itself. The locking mechanism for the top will be inside and accessible when the tailgate is down. I'm looking at putting a 12v solenoid inside the tail gate to lock the tailgate handle. The tailgate will unlock at the same time as the baja doors unlock.

Any suggestion for materials and locks will be appreciated.

Herb
03 Baja
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Old 08-09-2005, 08:29 AM   #2
cliffhanger
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sounds interesting, im sure a lot of us here would like to see it once its done... be sure to take lots of pics along the way!! good luck, ive been thinking of doing one in fiberglass, maybe if you're close to me i can have your template!
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Old 08-10-2005, 01:30 PM   #3
BajaCowboy
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Default If you have any questions ask

Hey there i was the same way i could not see putting that much cash up for a cover so i built my own. if you have any questions please feel free to pick my brain
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Old 08-12-2005, 08:44 AM   #4
YooperBaja
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Silver

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I built my own cover too. I put a hinge in it because the roll bars taper in and limit how much you can lift the cover if you need to open it. It also allows me to remove the cover, fold it on the hinge and stick it in the back seat if I need the back. See pics at the link below.

YooperBaja

http://www.kodakgallery.com/BrowsePh...1&sort_order=0
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Old 08-12-2005, 01:21 PM   #5
herbvogt
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The hinged one piece top looks good. I'm working on a two piece where the back piece (nearest the tailgate) is removable so I can quickly remove it to put in my mountain bike. It looks like you used particle board - exterior I would assume. I'm going to use marine plywood. I'm going to try to buy some 1/2" closed-cell sheet foam. I use this material in the floor of my white-water canoe for knee and foot braces. Did you glue the foam to the wood? I'm also still trying to find ways of locking both the top and tailgate. I'm going to take the tailgate apart to see how I can install a mechanical lock on the tailgate, possibly with a key lock hidden under the license plate holder. I 'm hoping that I can use a key lock with a cam and make a lever that will prevent someone from opening the tailgate handle - any ideas?
Cheeers,
Herb
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Old 08-12-2005, 08:51 PM   #6
su-be3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YooperBaja
I built my own cover too. I put a hinge in it because the roll bars taper in and limit how much you can lift the cover if you need to open it. It also allows me to remove the cover, fold it on the hinge and stick it in the back seat if I need the back. See pics at the link below.

YooperBaja

http://www.kodakgallery.com/BrowsePh...1&sort_order=0
Nice job on your cover!
About how much did it cost you for material, and how long did it take to make?
Very professionally done, to say the least, and it compliments the car well.
You should go into business selling these, even though the market isn't that large, you have a winner there.
Keep it under 90, folks!
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Old 08-13-2005, 09:19 PM   #7
YooperBaja
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Herb.... I would glue the vinyl down if I did it over. I stretched it and stapled it with carpet pad underneath (I have a friend who is a carpet layer and had some scraps). Even though I have it stapled every 1/4 inch all the way around, I still get a air bubble at highway speeds. As for locking it, I don't have a lock on it. I live in a rural area where people generally don't peak under the covers and it is garaged every night.

su-be3.... Thanks for the kind comments. I had done one before for my 91 Nissan sport truck. I learned on that one and applied the learning to this one. As for cost, I had most of the materials floating around my barn or garage. I bought a 36" hinge and the vinyl and maybe a few other little parts. As for time, I spent a good day on it and probably a little more time fine tuning it.

It is probably 90% watertight. The corners near the rear window are really tricky and I don't have a super tight fit there or around the roll bars as they taper forward and toward the center.

I would like to mount a subtle spoiler on it seeing it is a hardcover (not the aluminum wings that seem to be the current rage).

I hope this helps!

YooperBaja
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Old 08-16-2005, 09:02 AM   #8
herbvogt
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YooperBaja,
Last weekend I got my new top up to 90% completion. It is a two-piece top so I can easily remove the front and mount my Mt. Bike. Your tip about using the carpet mat saved me. I tried using closed cell foam and it was too difficult to wrap around the wood without a major pucker in the material on top. I got some water resistant carpet mat and that made it A LOT easier.

I spend around $130 - $140 for materials. The 3/4" marine plywood alone cost me $65. It was $95 for a 4x8 sheet. Fortunately, a friend bought 1/3 of it to use for repairs on his boat trailer. It was a lot of work to get the wood cut to exactly the right size for the foam to go around it and fit the bed of the Baja. I spent probably 20+ hours on this thing. Next weekend I'm going to water test it and add foam where it leaks before closing it up completely and putting marine carpet on the inside.

I will use the bungee like you do to hold it down while I work on a locking mechanism. I will post pictures next week. I'm going to use bungee on the back part near the window to hold it down tight which will ensure a tighter seal.

Cheers,
Herb
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Old 10-12-2005, 06:37 PM   #9
herbvogt
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Default Pictures of cover

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Old 10-12-2005, 09:19 PM   #10
02_Forester
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looks like a nice weekend project.

great job.
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Old 12-16-2005, 10:25 AM   #11
jamypac
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Quote:
Originally Posted by herbvogt
YooperBaja,
Last weekend I got my new top up to 90% completion. It is a two-piece top so I can easily remove the front and mount my Mt. Bike. Your tip about using the carpet mat saved me. I tried using closed cell foam and it was too difficult to wrap around the wood without a major pucker in the material on top. I got some water resistant carpet mat and that made it A LOT easier.

I spend around $130 - $140 for materials. The 3/4" marine plywood alone cost me $65. It was $95 for a 4x8 sheet. Fortunately, a friend bought 1/3 of it to use for repairs on his boat trailer. It was a lot of work to get the wood cut to exactly the right size for the foam to go around it and fit the bed of the Baja. I spent probably 20+ hours on this thing. Next weekend I'm going to water test it and add foam where it leaks before closing it up completely and putting marine carpet on the inside.

I will use the bungee like you do to hold it down while I work on a locking mechanism. I will post pictures next week. I'm going to use bungee on the back part near the window to hold it down tight which will ensure a tighter seal.

Cheers,
Herb
How much of a gap did you end up having to leave in order for there to be enough room to wrap the foam and vinyl around the edges?
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Old 12-16-2005, 03:20 PM   #12
cliffhanger
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yes, i forgot to congratulate you on the excellent top! did you ever figure out how you are going to lock it?
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Old 12-19-2005, 10:56 AM   #13
herbvogt
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I bought an electric door opener solenoid, but did find a really good place to mount it where it could lock out the tailgate handle. I think I'm going to use a round keylock with a pivoting lever. I may drill a hole for the round keylock behind the license plate and attach the 90 degree pivoting arm to a bicycle brake cable - the other end of the cable will be connected to the tailgate handle. When you turn the key it will pull the cable and block the handle from opening. I had to stop working on it due to my schedule at work.
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Old 12-21-2005, 06:32 PM   #14
nurseman
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Default built one as well

i built my own cover as well using plywood and auto foam and vinyl and came out great. i made a stencil out of cardboard first. mine is a 2 piece with a hinge and works great doesnt keep all the water out when it rains hard though but im no carpenter and found it easy enough. i am looking at legacy gt spoiler to put on back to give a nice look as well. as long as it keeps snow out is good for me up here in NW ny. as far as a lock i never considered one. even when i go to the mall i dont worry really i dont think to many thieves are lifting up bed covers to see whats in it. i could be wrong and maybe ill be ripped off some day for some groceries or such.
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Old 08-07-2009, 01:44 PM   #15
canuck37
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Default Bed Cover going......

I did something very similar to the one showed above a year ago. Made my own and it looks pretty much like this, except it isn't hinged in the middle and is in 2 pieces (front and back). I used marine grade vinyl and instead of foam backing used 1/2 felt (the kind sold for use in autos under the carpet. Works great. I spray glued the felt to the wood (after painting it to seal it from moisture, then glued the vinyl to the felt. I had the wood on hand, and so the only costs were for the vinyl and the felt and the glue. The hardest part was cutting out a template, but after that it went pretty easy. Probably took about 4-5 hours total to build and cost less than $75.00 tops.

Anyway.........I found that I really needed more covered space, so bought an ARE cap earlier this year.

Sooooo, if there is anyone in Northern California that would like it, I will donate the cover to someone, if they want to come pick it up. Shipping is out of the question. It is black also, by the way.

I am moving in a few months and if it is still around it will go in the dumpster, which would be a shame.
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Old 08-12-2009, 12:06 AM   #16
DRPSNERTLE
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Wish I was close enough to pick it up. FYI... swimming pool suppliers sell a closed cell foam for lining pool walls which is NOT UV STABLE, that can be used for padding of the vinyl for your project. 3M sells an adhesive which is perfect for your needs. OOPS! no advertising allowed, right?
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Old 05-27-2015, 02:11 AM   #17
BajaBratWA
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Default Beautiful work

It looks great. Any idea on cost?
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Old 05-27-2015, 03:31 PM   #18
Hondaslayer
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Don't expect a reply, this is a ten year old thread and the guy that posted it has not logged in for almost 9 years.
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Old 06-25-2015, 10:21 PM   #19
Jungle_44
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2000 03 Baja
Collision Tech / Painter

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I made mine for pretty cheap.

1 piece of 3/4" PRESSURE TREATED plywood

A few yards of marine vinyl, and speakerbox felt

Some aluminum threshold

Piano hinge

And some staple gun staples and glue.

Maybe $100?
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Old 06-25-2015, 10:24 PM   #20
Jungle_44
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2000 03 Baja
Collision Tech / Painter

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