Zarges Aluminum Gear Storage Boxes – Our Initial Thoughts, Review & Overview
Meet Zarges Storage Boxes: An Aluminum Storage Box That’ll Change How You Pack Your Off-Road, Overland or Daily Storage Gear
Storage boxes are important for the type of travel we do.
Many of us are photographers, off-roaders, overlanders, and overall are all well-prepared drivers in terms of tools and general daily driving gear. Having a dependable storage case to carry our tools, recovery gear and photography equipment is important for keeping things safe and organized.
No storage case out there is perfect, but the Zarges boxes come close. I wanted to give you guys an overview of the boxes themselves, and then in a later article, jump into configuration and gear details. For now, I wanted to take a look at these boxes versus some other popular boxes along with highlighting a few of their key points.
Who is Zarges?
They specialize in access, packaging and transportation industries while also boasting some seriously impressive custom applications. They have great customer service and offer a very high level of build quality. And it shows throughout many of their product lines.
In business for over 85 years, Zarges is continuously developing new products, services and software for its customers. Their products are strong, practical and dependable.
Made super lightweight and available in many sizes, Zarges boxes are a great option for storing gear, tools and general equipment. They stack well, are incredibly roomy given their footprint and are known for being long-lasting.
These boxes are depended on throughout many industries: engineering, photography, transportation, aviation, medical, military, defense & police, commercial applications and much more.
Let’s take a look at these storage boxes versus some of the other popular options and see how they stack up.
Zarges or Pelican?
I like that they’re much lighter than the Pelican version I have in damn near the same size comparatively. Both of the boxes, Zarges and Pelican will hold about the same amount, but the Zarges may hold more due to its straight edge sidewalls. The corners on the Zarges boxes are great for stacking, unlike Pelican cases that are prone to sliding around.
And, don’t get me wrong, I love my Pelican box.
I just think the Zarges is roomier inside given its outside dimensions which is really important when it comes to maximizing space.
Zarges or Front Runner?
These aluminum storage boxes are much stronger than Front Runner boxes by miles. They are also 3-5x the cost. Compared to the Front Runner Wolf and Cub boxes, the handles are stronger and will not damage or bust off. Front Runner is known for busting handles and latches, so there is that.
What Front Runner has on Zarges is the price. You can afford a few Front Runner boxes before you can buy one Zarges Box.
Different Models (K440 & K470)—Many Sizes!
The options for sizes are almost endless; check out both models’ price and size options below.
Zarges Storage Boxes
- K440 = Blue: Check Prices
- K470 = Silver/Black: Check Prices
- Smaller Step22 Overland Gear Bags: Check Prices
Zarges makes a couple of different core models to choose from, the K440 and K470. Each of these models is offered in many lengths, widths and heights.
Both of these boxes are high-quality gear storage boxes for off-roading, Overlanding and tool storage, but the K470 is particularly stronger than the K440.
The K470 is pictured above on top of the K440 and is made out of slightly higher quality materials with extra-thick 1.5mm sheet metal and 3 fully-welded aluminum profile frames. However, both boxes are going to accomplish the same goal for what we need.
On the K470, you will find aluminum profile corners which further increase the strength while the K440 features plastic raised corners.
I think the K470 would be a good choice to protect electronics, photography gear or something valuable in the case of a big drop. The K440 would be fine for all your recovery gear, overland gear and daily driving tools including jumper cables, tow straps and tool rolls.
Strong Lockable Latches
These latches are unlike many storage box latches you see out there. They are well built, strong and lockable but most importantly, they are smooth and easy. Both latches offer a hole in both sides to slide a lock through.
Whether you are throwing these boxes on your roof or in the back of your 4Runner, you can expect these lockable latches to hold up quite well. I like these latches over the Pelican and Front Runner latches because they are easier to latch and unlatch.
For whatever reason, both the Pelican and Front Runner latches when opening can cause this odd shock force up your arm. It might sound odd but they are almost too tight. The Zarges latches, on the other hand, are smooth and comfortable.
They can also be locked into place through both sides of the latch.
Strong & Weather Proof—Sealed Design
These boxes were made to go anywhere and protect your gear through extreme temperatures, whether inside the cab or out. These cases are water-resistant, corrosion-resistant, along with being windproof and dustproof.
I wouldn’t be able to explain this any better:
Zarges cases are designed to handle even the most extreme temperature fluctuations keeping your valuables safe in temperatures from -238°F to + 302°F. Even under extremely long-term storage conditions, Zarges cases are impervious to water vapor and are magnetically neutral, making them perfect cases to store sensitive electronic equipment and drones. – Zarges Storage Boxes
Although the Zarges box features impact-resistant cast aluminum corners (K470), don’t expect these to never catch a scratch or dent. If you drop one of these boxes on one of these corners, they will likely hold up fine. If, however, you catch a side edge or the face of the box, it will likely show.
The bottom line is that the box has fully welded profile sections so you can rest assured, that if your storage box drops, it will not break open.
If you want to run these in your rear cargo area, you won’t have anything to worry about. If you’re looking to run them on your roof, you should know they are water-resistant, corrosion-resistant and even windproof or dustproof.
Functional & Configurable—Unlimited Options!
We have limited space in the back of the 4Runner so gaining as much storage room as possible is key.
Not only does it take up less space, compared to a ROAM box, for example, it’s also stackable with other boxes of the same size. The beauty of these boxes is that there is literally a size for almost any situation you can create in the 4Runner. If you need that exact box size, the chances of Zarges making it are incredibly high.
If you have purchased a set of different size boxes, they might fit nicely inside of each other to maximize the use of your storage situation inside your garage.
The one thing I appreciate most about Zarges compared to some other boxes like Pelican and ROAM is that they are minimal in design. They have a straight edge on the side incorporating only what is needed, and no extra design protrusions that prevent some sliding into tight spaces. It’s really frustrating when cases won’t slide into a tight space because of an added 1/2″ piece of unneeded design material.
This leads me to my next point, this precise outside edge is just the same as their inside edge. It’s straight, tight and simple, all while made of high-quality foam. You can pack everything you need right up to the edge from top and bottom. If desired, the Zarges box lets you utilize every square inch of storage the cubic foot space allows.
So what am I using it for?
Tools and general everyday carry driving gear.
Previously, I was using a Smittybilt gear bag to carry my tools and gear. The bag was falling apart and just couldn’t hold everything I needed it to. I have grown my everyday carry collection over the years so the Smittybilt was starting to overflow.
The bag was hard to keep organized and difficult to repack once I grabbed something out. The Zarges box is a perfect solution for my situation carrying tools, jumper cables, first aid kit, tow straps, tire repair kit, tow hitch, and other items. My cargo area is now organized and clean. I highly recommend this setup.
I plan on running a few smaller Step 22 storage bags inside the Zarges boxes for even better organization.
I will follow up with an overview of the setup and configuration but I am stoked where it’s at right now.
Portable and Flexible
The Zarges box features stainless steel hinges on the lid as well as 2 sturdy lid-holding clasps to keep it open.
The heavy-duty spring-loaded handles located at the top and sides of each of these cases make them incredibly portable. This is also what makes the storage box so unique—it has three handles. This is one of the reasons why I like the Zarges over Pelican, you have three handles to choose from.
Sometimes we pack too much gear in our boxes and they need to be carried from two handles on the sides. You can’t do this with too many boxes but with the Zarges box, you can. No matter how heavy your cargo is, you can trust that the Zarges boxes can carry the weight.
The entire case itself is also lightweight, making it that much easier to move your things when you need to.
Really, no complaints other than that they scratch easily. Regardless, this has officially replaced my cargo area tool and gear carrier.
I think Zarges is somewhat of a hybrid between Pelican and Front Runner. These are going to be much stronger than a Front Runner box and lighter than a Pelican. The inside material is a strong side-wall foam with a straight edge that allows for a very customizable packing solution.
Whether it’s photography gear, recovery gear, camping accessories or every day automotive carry, these Zarges boxes are strong, safe and secure.
These Zarges boxes are aluminum metal so they are prone to dent and damage depending on how you care for them. If you, for example, dropped a jack on top, then you can really damage the top. The other negative is that metal gets hot. If you stack these boxes on your roof in the middle of summer, be prepared to glove up before handling these boxes.
At the end of the day, though, these boxes are a game-changer. They are super universal, made in a wide variety of sizes and can be configured to meet whatever needs you to throw at them. I think their true beauty is that they are offered in so many sizes, are incredibly strong and weatherproof.
Again, I will follow up with a few ways I am packing these, what I have in here and also introduce a new model that is tall/deep and handsome. lol.
Questions or Comments? Leave them below