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Motorcharge 04-17-2012 05:23 AM

ammo can console/lock box
Just did one for my Dakota, but it's pretty universal so I figure someone might benefit from this thread.

5.56 ammo can - $16 at local military surplus store
4x white LEDs - $10 at Advance Auto
1x toggle switch - $5 at Lowe's
6x 1" #8 self tapping screws - $1 at Lowe's
1x mailbox lock - $5 at Lowe's
total: $37

other supplies I had lying around:
Flat black spray paint
16ga wire

tools needed:
drill bits
wire strippers
grinder (if you want to remove the handle on top and the front so that they don't rattle)
cutting blades

The lock, LEDs and toggle switch are all that will be going on it for now. Sometime in the future, possibly next weekend I'll be adding a second toggle switch and exterior LED's on either side as long as strips under the dash for footwell lighting when needed.

5.56 Ammo Can

hole layout for toggle switch on drivers side

LEDs, toggle switch, and lock

hole layout in rear for LEDs

test fit for LEDs

holes layed out and drilled for where I'm mounting it

Motorcharge 04-17-2012 05:24 AM

Finished it by welding a small piece of steel onto the side on the inside for the latch on the lock to catch. Forgot to take a picture of that, but got everything else.

Removed the front handle. You could use a grinder, but I just hit it with bolt cutters.

Did the same thing with the top handle. The top hole I cut out for the lock.

Cut the hole for the switch next.

Lock and switch test fits.

Once everything was all fit in place I threw some semi-flat black paint on it.

Motorcharge 04-17-2012 05:26 AM

I didn't take pictures of the wiring process for a couple reasons. One, it frustrates me enough doing electrical work without stopping to take pictures, and two not everyone will wire it the same. I tied mine into the 12v constant for the cigar lighter. I just pulled the dash cover, radio, and stereo. Wired the positive into the 12v constant and the ground wire to the ground strip for the radio. Ran both lines down through the openings in the dash and down behind the ashtray molding where they dropped out the bottom.

As for mounting it to the floor, I simply ran a pencil on the pre-drilled holes in the box, then drilled pilot holes in the trans tunnel, there's plenty of space without hitting anything. Then I put washers inside and ran 1" #8 self tapping screws down and it's plenty sturdy.

Anyway, here's final pictures.

Unfortunately one of the 4 LEDs was broken out of the package. I'll end up replacing it later.

Texsun 06-23-2012 11:45 PM

Awesome! Stealing idea!

MachinistMade 08-20-2012 06:42 PM

nice man! Cheap too, especially because i already have a couple of these ammo boxes lying around collecting dust. i like the integrated LED's.

fitzp20102 08-21-2012 06:42 AM

Love it... Good pictures. Thanks...

Cutlass327 08-22-2012 12:54 AM

Good idea, but I'd have hid the switch in the hinge side - less chance of bumping.. and what is the lock supposed to latch to? I think I'd have tried to incorporate it into the big hole in the handle - if you cannot lift the handle, you cannot open it..

Just random thoughts, but like I said, good idea!

Motorcharge 08-22-2012 05:21 PM


Originally Posted by Cutlass327 (Post 14056663)
Good idea, but I'd have hid the switch in the hinge side - less chance of bumping.. and what is the lock supposed to latch to? I think I'd have tried to incorporate it into the big hole in the handle - if you cannot lift the handle, you cannot open it..

Just random thoughts, but like I said, good idea!

When I did this originally it was on the trans hump in my Dakota. Plenty far enough from my leg and in a good spot to flip it on if I needed to grab something real quick.

I welded a piece of 1/8" flat bar to the inside wall (no pics of it, sorry) for the latch to catch on.

I'd be comfortable storing most anything I own short of a firearm in it, but realistically if someone really wants to get into it they're going to find a way.

koolaid5 02-26-2014 09:31 PM

Definitely like the overall concept. Would just tweak a few small things to suit my needs a bit better. hhhhmmmm.... might mount one in the cargo area too.

Speaking of gear in the cargo area. I need a good setup for tools too.

Project1 03-08-2014 07:21 PM

I have the same size/style ammo can I was thinking of making a kind of center consol out of ...or put my stereo in ..or both ..

I like what your thinking

Martyls 06-21-2014 07:22 PM

I mounted one in the cargo area of my YJ. I have the back seat out, so I just used the seatbelt bolts and bolt holes. Drilled tow holes in an ammo can and bolted it to the side.

dahreno 06-21-2014 07:37 PM

Great idea !, I probably would have used flush mount LEDs to not break them off with the stuff inside. I would also recommend putting a sheet metal box around the wiring coming out of the switch inside, so to not tear them off . Wouldn't want to reach in there and touch the positive wire by accident. Lastly I would have installed a rocker switch instead of a toggle,one that is lit when on, just less chance of turning it on and have it on all night and running down the battery. I really hope you are not offended by the changes I would have made, it really is a great idea, cheap and effective.:cheers2:

y2k-fxst 08-23-2014 10:15 AM

Just got to thinking, these ammo cans would a good speaker box also for mounting on rear fender housing. Depending on the size of the box used, could put a divider in it where one side could be used as storage for the rear seat passengers. Left in factory paint would really look good in a military themed Jeep.

Could even put one in between the seats with some louvers in the sides to mount the head unit for a stereo. Would give a good water resistant mount that would conceal the unit in an old Willys that the owner wants to keep looking stock but, upgrade.

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