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Popular square tube sizes?


May 26, 2020
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I am finishing up my first square project, a flatbed. I dont need heavy duty, just for looks, so I used 2x4 and 2x2 in 1/8 thick.

I orderedbased off wood sizes but they were true to size, and in my opinion I did not chose the best size. The 2x2 seems weak, the 2x4 seems big looking.

What are some popular sizes that people.build flatbeds, boxes, etc with, if they were to see use? 2x3 in 3/16? Next project Id like to do better.


Here everyone uses 3" channel for the perimeter and 1.5" stock for cross-members because if you're lazy and just trying to build shit fast you stick the 1.5" straight to the web of the 3" and the height of the tapered flange adds enough that nominal 2x4s will be flush after you run a planer down the ends to make them fit under the top web of the 3". Yes they insert the wood before they weld the front/rear edge on and you have to cut the bed apart if you ever want to replace it. I've never seen someone build a wood decked steel flat bed for a pickup that wasn't total hack. Not that you couldn't do it just that the guys that can tend to build stuff out of aluminum, build things more exotic than a simple flat bed or at the very least do some sort of steel deck.
How thick is the channel and 1.5"?


I don't know what weight channel people typically use. Probably 4.1 or 5.0 but someone somewhere has probably used heavier. People seem to use 1/8 to 1/4 for the cross-members. The thinner stuff seems to be more common with tube cross-members. The thicker stuff seems to be more common with L-channel cross-members.
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