Introduction: Bomb-proof Storage Locker for Zombie-proof Vehicle
If you're anything like me, zombies are all the time breaking into your truck and stealing stuff for no good reason. Well, I'm here to help you stop such tomfoolery. Granted, it'll probably be pretty hard to find the exact parts, but you should be able to substitute stuff here and there. Alright, let's kick this mule!
Step 1: Find Yourself a Box
I got a Buck brand X-Ray cabinet, circa nineteen-something, at a consignment shop. It's big. It's heavy. It's made of steel and lined with lead. It didn't have the legs, which I didn't need. It did have the lid, which comes in handy.
Step 2: Mount That **** to the Floor!
Like you, I have a police console base bolted to my truck's floor. I welded the steel box directly to it. There are any number of ways to go about this. Just make sure the box isn't going anywhere. The sheer size and weight help with that.
Step 3: Get Some Locks
Now you could lock this thing up with some padlocks or whatnot, but that would just be stupid. Any criminal worth his salt will be packing a pair of bolt cutters. No, what you need is a pair of hardened steel, chrome-plated trailer hitch locking pins. Think Harbor Freight and peace of mind. The shank on these bad boys is 5/8", I believe.
Step 4: Attach Tabs to Box
Make two tabs, or brackets, or some such pieces of metal with holes in them. You could even use big washers if you wanted. The holes should be big enough for your hitch pins to fit through. Weld these onto the front and back of the box, near the top and centered. Be sure to throw an old rain slicker over anything you don't want showered with molten steel.
Step 5: Make and Install Locking Bar
Now you're going to cut some sort of metal bar that runs lengthwise across the top of your box. When locked in place, this will hold your safe's door closed. My lid is recessed, so even if a thief busted the stock hinges, they couldn't slide the door sideways to gain entry. If your lid isn't recessed, you'll have to figure out some other way, albeit lame by comparison, to secure the lid. Originally, we were going to just use a simple hasp mechanism, but decided that would be stupid and unimaginative.
Back to the bar. It needs to have a hole in both ends that correspond with the holes in the tabs you welded to the box. These holes also have to be big enough to accept your hitch pins. We used a section of slotted C-channel so that other equipment can be attached later on.
With the locking bar in position, you simply bolt down each end with your hitch pin locks by passing them through the locking bar and the welded tabs. Ideally, we would have welded the tabs farther down, so that when locked, there would be no play in the locking bar. The steel box, however, is reinforced along its edges, so we welded the tabs there to maximize strength. You can see how we added washers above the locking bar to take up the gap. This way, there is no rattling and, if a thief destroys the box hinges, they won't be able to lift the lid high enough to slide it laterally.
Okay, at this point your auto safe is complete. We could have stopped there, but that'd be boring and stupid.
Step 6: Add a Mobile Data Center
I work out of my truck a lot and in some pretty severe conditions. I got a Panasonic Toughbook CF-29 laptop on Craigslist a few years back for $500. Not bad, considering they originally went for over $4,000 each. They're pretty much indestructible ... except for viruses. Most of the surplus ones out there have Windows XP, which is no longer supported by Microsoft. As a result, people are dumping them like hotcakes and I now see them on CL for $100-$200. They're hard to beat when it comes to field data entry and word processing.
I went back to Craigslist and found a guy selling two-piece mounts for Toughbooks. These consist of a swivel mount and a docking station. I picked up a set for $35. These things mount into a vertical shaft using an expanding mechanism just like the old BMX stems.
Step 7: Make Receiver for MDC Mount
The expanding stem on my MDC mount was a hair under 1-1/4" OD. I found some 1-1/4" ID pipe and cut a piece off. We welded this to the right front edge of the box, with the tops flush. The MDC mount's stem was then placed into the pipe and tightened up.
Step 8: Wrap It Up!
Once the computer was mounted, I got a yoga mat from Goodwill and used this to line the interior of the box. Project done.
Step 9: UPDATE: Accessorizationalism!
Just added a fire extinguisher to the top accessory rail!