Airmapper's 2011 Nissan Xterra PRO-4X

#46
Looking forward to seeing the photos of your latest modifications added to this thread.
Be sure and check the photo album link out below it has some fabrication photos as I pieced this together.



Alright here we go, major update:

Added recently:

OME Heavy Duty lift kit: Link
New lower control arms
New adjustable cam bolts

Rides like a new truck and handles the weight of being fully loaded for camping now without beating me to death in the process. It's firm, but it handles shock now instead of boucing off of it and using the bump stops for support.

It's current overall appearance and camping loadout:





Also started in on a project late last year to revamp my storage options. Any of you with Xterra's know how poorly the rear cargo area is designed. The underfloor space is inaccessible unless you ditch all cargo, the floor is hard and anything not strapped down, duct taped, and glued will roll around with every turn.

I like some drawer designs, but it's hard to ignore drawers waste a ton of space from their own building materials, space an Xterra hardly has to give. So keeping with the idea of a drawer I adapted it to a sliding platform. I get the benefit of a moving surface to bring items out where you can reach them, and reclaim my under floor storage by having a means to get the cargo on top of it out of the way. (The stock floor cover is completely removed and the hole covered when the slide is pushed in.

I used 500lb lock in/ lock out slides from Orr & Orr.

I ordered tie down tracks from US Cargo control to line the edges of the drawer for securing objects to the platform. Rings to hook to simply clip into the track and can be moved where needed. I've been browsing Strapworks (thanks for the lead @southpier ) for materials to make custom tie downs for my more commonly used gear now I have the platform done.

I also added a shelf at the seat back level for low profile and light items, taking advantage of the Xterra's vertical space which is has more of than most smaller SUV's. The shelf is usable with or without the slide installed, and actually all of this mounts into the Xterra's stock floor utility tracks and while not handy to move on a whim is relatively easy to remove if necessary.

Since the shelf creates a black hole under it, I made a power lead off the prior interior lighting LED bolt project and added LED strips to it, plugged into the interior light wiring it behaves exactly as the other lights do and are controlled by the same switches.

They are not well displayed in photos, but I added a pair of 1" metal strips 1" apart to the shelf mounting legs on both sides, this is not for stability as it is very rigid, but rather to be compatible with MOLLE bags which are plentiful to get in a million different layouts, and handy to store small items or collections of items in.

This was also combined with a project to add 10g wiring leads to the rear cargo area from the battery, this terminates in a dual Anderson powerport jack in the right side cubby, and powers my new Indel B TB-18 fridge which rides on the slide when in use.

The complete project photo album is here: https://photos.app.goo.gl/HfunrkRkltUNGjuJ3













Parting note, a Hefty Fabworks radiator skid is likely going on this week.... but lots of Xterra's have those or an equivelent of some kind.
 

Dmski

Adventurer
#47
Really like that rack setup in the back. How do you have the fridge plugged in with it on the slide out? Or is it just a cooler?
 
#48
Really like that rack setup in the back. How do you have the fridge plugged in with it on the slide out? Or is it just a cooler?
Thanks. It's a fridge, the cord has so far traveled well with the slide in and out, it has slack in it. I have it routed loosely through a tiedown ring on the side of the slide that seems to keep it under control.
 
#49
Photo shoot for recent upgrades / modifications after one of the few good washings it gets.

Recent additions are the Rock Mtn Xcessories winch bumper fitted with a Smittybilt XRC8, swapped line for 80' of 3/8" Amsteel Blue synthetic, 30ft of cordura sheath, a Safety Thimble II and a hawse fairlead.

Also bumped the Duratrac's up to 33"s (285/75/16) and unseen is a matching spare wheel & tire combo in the stock location.

Oh, and a few extra Kentucky Pinstripes as well. Might as well wear em' with pride.




could you possibly. give a short synopsis of the construction of the winch bumper mount? I'm hoping to do something very similar.
Thank you.
 
#50
could you possibly. give a short synopsis of the construction of the winch bumper mount? I'm hoping to do something very similar.
Thank you.
Are you on thenewx.org? Hard for me to remember who is on both, lots of info on there on this particular style mount, and a few DIY builds on the same principle. RockyMtnX does not make these anymore, and I thought about copying him at the time but I'm glad I did not because he was/is a superb fabricator. I understand he's into 4runners now.

Basically it replaces the OEM bumper, and attaches via brackets that mount to the tow hook holes in the bottom of the frame, AND the front holes in the end of the frame. That is pretty important to copy, the bottom frame holes are by far the more structurally important.

I was very impressed with the simplicity, it's all pretty much angle iron and square tubing carefully designed to fit together.

Here is an uninstalled photo. Not shown are the brackets which attach to the bottom of the frame and then bolt to the piece below.

 
#51
That slide out is great! Could you give more info on how it's attached and constructed? I am struggling with cargo management in the Xterra as well!
 
#52
That slide out is great! Could you give more info on how it's attached and constructed? I am struggling with cargo management in the Xterra as well!
Thank you. The linked photo album should show enough fabrication shots to reverse engineer it. It's basically 6 pieces of angle iron, the slides, a piece of plywood, a piece of outdoor carpet, a bunch of fasteners, and the tie down strips.

3/8" channel nuts secure it in 8 locations to the OEM C-channel tracks in the floor. I did upgrade the hardware in the channel tracks to a higher grade fastener considering the large difference in size. I was a bit apprehensive trusting the OEM mounts, but after removing most of the interior inside for another project and inspecting them, I think it will be fine. Not that you should, but I was okay with it considering I put high grade SHCS bolts in place of the OEM button heads. That means no real modification was made to the Xterra, just set aside the floor panel and it's a bolt on assembly.

I'm a CAD designer and I did 2D and 3D model parts of it but honestly once I used CAD to visualize my ideas most final cuts were made using test fits and measurements off the truck, so my models are not even accurate to the final form, in this instance I found it easier to just cut to fit as I went which guaranteed it fit perfectly and no do-overs. My initial measurements just proved it would work, gave me a plan to go by, established what slides would fit, and gave me something to know how much metal to buy.

It did require a few special skills/ tools that everyone might not have readily available. I used a small drill press, a chop saw, mig welder, and for the main mounts I did mill part of it to create clearance. (A very simple milling job, but still not everyone has a milling machine handy for very clean and precise cuts....) All the angled cuts and corners were done with the saw.

Actually modifying the HF hitch rack and fabbing the legs was a much more labor intensive job than the slide. I welded, ground, and cut a lot more on it.
 
#53
Thanks, that is exactly what I needed to know. I was suspicious of how well anchored the factory channel was, but I haven't actually taken it apart to look. Thanks again!