Originally Posted by lifted97ranger
if you get 1 other person, you can remove the bed 100x easier than dropping the tank......you can have the bed off in about 20 minutes not trying...
I took longer than that to take out TWO of the bed bolts when I repainted my trailer hitch (yes, the 2 last bedbolts have to come out to get the factory Class III hitch off). Granted, I wasn't using an air ratchet, just your average 1/2" breaker bar and a ratchet after they got easier. On the 4wd models, those bed bolts are very long and the threads underneath have been exposed and rusting. I soaked those threads a couple times in the days before, plus kept wetting them as I cranked them out (with PB Blaster).
I guarantee you aren't getting six bolts out of a 97 bed that's been anywhere it snows in 20 minutes.
Did you say Poconos??? Mmm Hmm.
The first few turns took every bit of strength that I could muster on that breaker bar. It didn't get much
easier. The whole time I was just waiting for that bolt to snap. I chased the nutplate with a tap and die'd the rust out of the bolt threads afterwards (metric too). They went back in a whole lot easier (with lubriplate) but it was still work. Lots and lots of ratcheting. Not enough ooomph available to use a speedhandle.
I agree it's still easier to pull the bed than than to drop the tank, but don't go into it expecting a cakewalk. I sure wouldn't put that old hardware back on either after seeing the two I had to do.
Your results may vary.