In the bustling world of dedicated tradies and 4x4 enthusiasts, there's one essential truth: a reliable workhorse needs the right gear to match its rugged spirit.
That's why, as we embark on the thrilling journey of transforming our ‘off the rack’ Mitsubishi Triton into the ultimate tradie work ute, our first stop is the renowned tray and toolbox specialists at TC Boxes.
Its aluminium powdercoated toolboxes, dog boxes and gullwing canopies have become synonymous with craftsmanship and functionality.
While dropping the Triton off at the TC Boxes head office and installation centre in Marsden Park, we caught up with NSW manager, Josh Collisson, who provided insight into TC Boxes' impressive trajectory over the last eight years, where the company was first set up in Pakenham, Victoria in 2016.
"Initially, the focus was on toolboxes only. After a few years, it moved into the canopy space,” Josh said. “Then, several years back, we introduced the tray line, which opened up all the accessories and other items we focus on, such as wheel holders, jerry cans, roof racks, drawer units, and now we are even doing EnerDrive power systems internally, along with fridge slides, pull-out kitchens and even ovens.
“So we have a lot to offer our customers, compared to a few years ago. Which makes us a great choice for just about anyone.
"This facility in Marsden Park was an empty shell when we first moved in 2022, so it's been great to see it now fully set up as our head office and Sydney installation centre,” he added. “With five hoists and plenty of stock and storage, the boys are very efficient at turning cars around with full set-ups in about a day and a half.
“Our second NSW site is fully operational in Mayfield West up in Newcastle, and it's great to be able to service the Newcastle area. With plenty of great feedback, our system works exceptionally well for both tradies and those working in and around the mining industry in those parts," Josh said.
As much as we are focused on ticking all the day-to-day work requirements for a fully functional work ute, keeping a crossover lifestyle element was as important to us as the TC team.
These guys are meticulous with their attention to detail, from the design of the range through to the high-quality materials, which is why they stand behind their products with a 24-month, fully comprehensive warranty that undoubtedly makes TC boxes the trades choice.
The tray fit-out
The backbone of the TC Boxes fit-out is the aluminium 1650mm black tray, which is TC Boxes newly designed aluminium tray for all common-rail dual-cab utes. Colour choices include powder-coated UV-stabilised Black Scylla or Horizon White Scylla.
The tray is rugged and lightweight, manufactured from premium grade aluminium. The tray itself looks stylish, well-designed and well-thought-out, and the 8mm aluminium c-channel main frame and 40 x 40mm SHS sub frame is impressive with its durability and build quality.
Combined with six industrial-strength mounting feet which lock it all together to the chassis, it tells the story that TC Boxes mean business with its products.
This tray is very secure, making it robust and solid for any tracks, trails or off-road bush bashing you have planned. So, regardless of whether you're a tradie or tourer, you can trust the strength and integrity of this entire system.
The tray measures 1650mm (L) x 1775mm (W), which allows for the fitment of a 1400mm (L) x 800mm (W) trundle drawer to store an array of tools and recovery gear. With a load rating of up to 80kg, it frees up plenty of internal space.
The tray’s 4mm flared guards look awesome and allow up to 35-inch wheels for increased ground clearance.
The tray sports genuine Maxilamp Series 3 LED tail-lights, which look epic and have top-of-the-range light output in a great design. You will struggle to find better-looking tail-lights than these, which sit in a recessed position on the frame for added protection. A 12-volt LED licence plate light is also securely mounted above your plates.
Another vital piece of equipment is the Integrated rear sensor bar and camera mounting brackets, which means all vehicle models from 2018 will take advantage of this addition.
Plus, durable 2.5mm flat-plate aluminium undertray toolboxes allow for the safe storing of tools and accessories. Perfectly sized to fit our Triton, they offer even more secure storage for tool-heavy trades like carpenters and plumbers.
Two toolboxes for maximum storage
When it came to the toolboxes and storage for the ‘Tradie Triton’, we wanted ample room as well as plenty of drawers, shelves and compartments to safely house specific tools and equipment. The TC Boxes range delivered on these requirements.
The tray's passenger side was the perfect home for the 1450mm TC Boxes full door with drawers, again in the tough UV-stabilised Ripple Black Scylla powder-coat.
The four 35kg mid-placed drawers are the perfect home for lasers, socket sets, batteries and other gear you’d prefer to keep separate from the rest of your tools. The more significant 50kg-rated bottom drawer also makes an excellent home for power tools, boxes of nails and other hardware that loves to bounce around when left in larger storage areas or the back of the tray.
The 2.5mm flat-plate aluminium toolbox uses the highest quality materials, and the full door with drawers will exceed the needs of Australian tradies. No-one wants to hear their tools sliding around in the tray, and the organised layout of this toolbox will allow you to know exactly where everything is.
It’s all about the accessories
Other features of this quality set-up include the whale-tail lock, gas-strut-assisted door, cushion rubber seal, dual-folded returns, adjustable shelf, 40mm door recess, and the included 24-month warranty.
While the passenger side was more about organisation and secure storage, the driver’s side toolbox was more about housing bulkier tools in their boxes or bags. This 1750mm full-door 2.5mm flat-plate aluminium toolbox offers plenty of options with a removable shelf and copious space to house bulky power tools. It also keeps power tools safe, secure and out of the harsh weather and conditions, with water- and dust-resistant seals and locking systems.
The team at TC Boxes recently added some sought-after accessories to make off-road adventures last as long as possible, so we had to include two black jerry can holders, which have been perfectly designed to finish flush with the rear of the tray. The holders, designed and built for serious adventure, are constructed using 5mm laser-cut aluminium with internal and external welds.
Most tradies will love the inclusion of a 70mm universal ladder rack. It's a pretty straightforward system that will greatly assist when it comes to storing and loading gear. This system easily fits to your toolboxes or canopy, and it will help to carry tools during the week or boards, rods and canoes on the weekend.
4x4 Project Vehicles
Constructing out of 40mm x 40mm x 2.5mm RHS square tube and being 1400mm wide with 5mm-thick mounting plates, the team at TC Boxes have made these as durable as possible.
The dual 900mm NTR tapered aluminium under tray toolboxes offer industry-leading quality, and its TIG-welded construction ensures reliability and durability. Being lockable and dust- and weather-resistant through the inclusion of the rubber seal, this option again adds flexibility to your fit-out. Including dual cable supports allows for smooth opening, and tradies we have spoken to have enjoyed and appreciated the quality of the locking mechanism.
As we conclude this initial phase of the Triton's transformation with TC Boxes, it's abundantly clear that functionality has never looked this good. TC Boxes has met and exceeded our expectations with its unwavering commitment to top-notch build quality, premium materials, and clever design.
Our mission to elevate the Triton from an ordinary workhorse to an extraordinary dual-purpose beast has gained tremendous momentum thanks to this impressive collaboration.