Using a Gun Case as a Cargo Box for Off-Road Accessories and Recovery Gear
Mounting a Gun Case to your Roof Rack as Cargo Box for Recovery Gear
When I got my LFD Oﬀ-road roof rack, my intention was to carry most of my gear using Plano sportsman’s boxes to leave the cargo area of the 4Runner accessible for sleeping.
After some time of putting heavy boxes up and down on the roof rack hassling with strapping them down, I decided that it was more trouble than it was worth.
Unloading the boxes from the roof only to pack them up the next day was a drag. Leaving them on the roof rack and having to get things out as needed was equally annoying.
I looked into getting a rack cargo carrier such as the ones from Yakima or Thule but they were a bit pricy and I also wanted something that was a little slimmer while still maintaining a rugged look.
So I came up with a solution to keep some of the more permanent gear that I always carry in my vehicle out of the way. I went down to the local Academy and picked up a Game Winner 54in gun case (model FSGWSA2090).
The case is similar to the Pelican cases but at half the cost. They can also be found at the local Harbor Freight under the Apache brand.
Gun Case Options & Mounting
- Game Winner 54-inch Gun Case: Check Price
- Pelican Gun Case: Check Price
- Apache Gun Case: Check local Harbor Freight
- Plano Gun Case: Check Price
- Stainless Square U-Bolts: Check Price
- Anti Seize Lubricant (very important): Check Price
- Silicone Sealant: Check Price
The Game Winner 54-inch gun case is constructed of hard high-impact plastic and according to the specs, it is dust and water resistant. It also comes with three types of foam to protect any sensitive gear.
The Game Winner also has wheels for easy transport and four locking points and two padlock points.
I decided to permanently mount it to my roof rack and carry all my recovery gear and vehicle gear such as jumper cables, boots, gloves, tools, snatch strap, shovel, and air compressor.
To mount it, I simply drilled some holes for some u-bolts.
I recommend using the square kind instead of the rounded ones, but either one will work fine.
I also sealed the holes with rtv silicone to keep water from getting in. I added two overland roof rack padlocks to discourage someone from stealing anything.
I suppose if someone was motivated enough they could unmount the whole thing and take oﬀ with it, but after three months I haven’t had any issues yet.
For anyone that’s considering an alternative to cargo rack carriers, you might consider this option.
Permanent or Temporary Solution?
Both as a permanent or temporary solution, gun cases are usually a much more affordable option as opposed to cargo rack carriers. While most cargo carriers from Yakima and Thule range anywhere from $300-$600, gun cases range anywhere from $60-$200 and offer a similar amount of protection and storage.
For a permanently mounted solution, just know that you will have permanent holes in your storage box and if you ever go to reuse the box outside of your roof rack, you will need to seal those holes back up. That is why in this case, you may want to go with a cheaper Harbor Freight version or something under $100.
For a temporary storage box, you may want to go with a higher-end brand like Pelican or Plano.
Different Gear for Different Storage Boxes
For the price, the overall construction of the Game Winner 54in gun case is top notch. I’ve had it on my roof rack for over three months in extreme heat and downpours without any issues.
The case fits all the dirty gear that I don’t want in the car and best of all, I don’t have to keep putting it up and down. At some point, I plan to mount my recovery tracks on the lid to free up some space on my rack.
All my other gear like food, camp gear goes in two Plano sportsman’s boxes in the cargo area. When we get to camp we simply take those out fold down the seats and we have the cargo area free for sleeping in the car.
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