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Old 12-08-2013, 05:40 PM   #1
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Default Rear Storage box Euro style

I saw a Facebook post on a RT Group about a storage box on the back of a Sprinter in Europe and wanted to find out more. A Google search indicates that the idea is quite common in Europe with several variations of "boxes" available as shown here: http://futura-strong.rs/katalog/ski-box/ and here: http://www.polovniautomobili.com/oglas2 ... r_ski_box/

Some have greater depth than others.







A loose translation of text:

Quote:
for the transport of skis as a tool box or as luggage suitcase for tradesmen , hotels , taxi companies , associations, etc. be used.
By means of bolts and the pins will be attached to the vehicle, the " SKI BOX " . Previously, four bearing blocks have to be mounted on the vehicle. By removing two bolts " SKI BOX " may be pivoted away laterally . The luggage compartment in the vehicle , thus to achieve easy. By removing all the bolts " SKI BOX " may be fully complete hang
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Zadní SKI BOX.jpg (73.2 KB, 2137 views)
File Type: jpg Sprinter SKI_BOX_rear_luggage.jpg (111.8 KB, 2137 views)
File Type: jpg SKI_BOX_rear_luggage.jpg (123.9 KB, 2137 views)
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Old 12-08-2013, 06:07 PM   #2
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Default Re: Rear Storage box Euro style

The extended vans are 16" longer. That's about all those boxes give you. An extended van would be cheaper I would guess.
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Old 12-08-2013, 08:44 PM   #3
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Default Re: Rear Storage box Euro style

For the Transits and ProMasters that don't have the extended length, those would be extremely useful. I wonder how hard it would be to attach and detach (maybe some fold-out wheels), and if it touches the van other than the hitch (which if not engineered right can cause rubbing.)

I'd buy one without hesitation because the depth may not be great, but the height makes up for it. Of course, I hope it has a decent locking mechanism, preferably something resistant to a long screwdriver or perhaps a crowbar... but I could always get the Fiamma Safe Door things for it if needed.
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Old 12-08-2013, 10:21 PM   #4
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Default Re: Rear Storage box Euro style

Looks weird to me.
I think Davydd's idea is probably the best solution. If you need an extended van, buy one (if you can afford it). If I couldn't afford the extended chassis models, I'd buy a SwingAway or StowAway or whatever they're called, before I'd add something like that.
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Old 12-08-2013, 11:17 PM   #5
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Default Re: Rear Storage box Euro style

I have a Let'sGoAero 20 cf cargo carrier with landing wheels so I can single handedly remove and install it. It also slides away rather than swings away from the B far enough to open the rear doors. However, I cannot install or remove it with anything of weight in it.

Looking at the European units Marko posted it doesn't appear they are designed to be easily removed or swung away. If so, they kill your rear windows and ability to open the doors. That would not be good for most Bs and there are some Bs like the LTV Free Spirit SS which kill the back anyway but still allow you to open the doors for storage. I'm not sure how practical the idea is and for what purpose. I know from experience on a regular Sprinter B that loading much more than 150 lbs in a cargo carrier drastically changes the handling characteristics. I don't know how those units would perform on an extended body (ERA) Sprinter but I am guessing not good. So if suitable for only a regular body Sprinter then just getting an extended body Sprinter would make a lot more sense. The company either had a specific reason for them or they just thought it was a good idea without giving it a lot of thought, IMO of course.

Keep in mind, a typical cargo carrier is about 15 cf. My carrier was 20 cf and too big in that I could easily overload it. Let'sGoAero makes a 34 cf carrier but it is designed more for carrying two bicycles. Those units look to be at least 60 cf.
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Old 12-08-2013, 11:25 PM   #6
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Default Re: Rear Storage box Euro style

In looking at that first photo it appears to me there is no sliding door and the passenger door looks like a bus entrance. If so, this could be an excursion or transfer bus with passenger seating only and the add on carrier is probably strictly for luggage.
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Old 12-09-2013, 02:28 AM   #7
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Default Re: Rear Storage box Euro style

After a second look, I wonder if it is Mercedes authorized. If it hangs on the hinges, which it appears to do, that is iffish. As far as I know, M-B won't let people install a continental spare tire unless it is a drop-down unit. I don't think they would allow something this large to hang off the door hinges with aftermarket pins, especially if it gets used to store stuff like macerator pumps, generators, backpacks, and other camping gear.

I love the look and form factor, but unless the weight of the unit is on the hitch receiver and the pins are just to keep it aligned, then I'd probably go with a hitch mounted cargo rack as Davydd mentioned, since that is a reliable and proven solution with few gotchas.
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Old 12-09-2013, 02:42 AM   #8
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Default Re: Rear Storage box Euro style

I suspect those boxes are supported off a hitch receiver and the hinges are just stays.
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Old 12-09-2013, 06:02 AM   #9
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Default Re: Rear Storage box Euro style

It is really neat looking, but my concern is the weight. Once it is on, I would think you couldn't carry much other items. Safe travels, Ron.
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Old 12-09-2013, 03:09 PM   #10
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Default Re: Rear Storage box Euro style

Quote:
Originally Posted by Davydd
In looking at that first photo it appears to me there is no sliding door and the passenger door looks like a bus entrance. If so, this could be an excursion or transfer bus with passenger seating only and the add on carrier is probably strictly for luggage.
Yes, you're right Davyd. It's a bus ... and a really nice model. The first passenger seat swings forward out of the way to let the other passengers in. Take a look here:

[youtube:38jxe6e5]IzyH90fW2s0[/youtube:38jxe6e5]

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Old 12-09-2013, 03:26 PM   #11
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Default Re: Rear Storage box Euro style

That was kind of a long boring video with ugly armrests and they didn't open and show the box.

The question kind of begs why, in this design situation as a bus, they just don't buy an extended van 16" longer, put in an inside partition shelf in the back for the luggage storage and get the same seating? The only reason I can think of is in that country the extended van is not sold.
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