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Front Runner Table: 4x4 product test

By Mark Allen, 07 Jul 2019 Bush Cooking

Front Runner Table 4x4 product test feature

Making the kerbside brunch stop quick and easy.

FOLD-DOWN tables hanging off rear doors are nothing new. Many punters make their own, with the DIY route saving them money and producing a superior product to suit one’s needs.

I was going to make a fold-down table for the rear barn door of my Troopy – a couple of sheets of timber or sheetmetal, some hinges or one long piano-style hinge, a couple of lengths of cable or chain, and presto, you’ve got yourself a table. A few screws later and the whole shebang will be hanging off your door ready for service.

I was going to, but I haven’t got around to it yet (really, I was). That was until I spotted the Front Runner drop-down table which incorporates a slide-out table, effectively (almost) doubling the table surface area. I may have taken the easy way out by buying instead of making, but this kit ended up costing not much more than all the parts I’d need for a DIY job; plus it has the extra slide-out table.

The kit offers a downward-folding metal table that is kept (vertically) in place via two spring-loaded retaining clips. Once lowered, two plastic-coated stainless steel cables keep the table horizontal, ready for immediate use and preventing sausages from rolling into the dirt. That initial table top measures 665mm wide by 300mm deep – not huge, but very useable – and is a black, powdercoated steel unit, making it easy for cleaning.

The extra slide-out table is hidden beneath the first tabletop and slides out the end, offering an additional 440mm in length. The slide-out table’s timber surface is uncoated, which makes cleaning harder and allows food and liquid to penetrate – not ideal when it starts to go mouldy. I’ll be giving it a couple of coats of stain or paint to seal it.

I’ve fitted it to the driver’s side rear door (the larger door) of my Troopy, but the kit is more suitable for JK Jeep Wranglers as well as any other vehicle with swing-open doors with a flat vertical area of 650mm long x 350mm high. The table can also be configured to suit either left- of right-side opening, making it a fairly universal product.

Drilling into the door is required to mount the unit securely, and all hardware and instructions are included. The main table has a load rating of 40kg (that’s a lot of sausages). The weight limit for the timber section is uncertain, but it’s perfect for placing on all of your condiments, drinks and tableware, while using the main metal table for a gas cooker or food preparation table.

Perhaps it’s my overzealous slamming of the rear door, but the table clips aren’t strong enough to prevent the table from falling open inside the Troopy. It’s easy enough to close again from the inside, but perhaps I’ll have to adjust either the table clips or my door-slamming style.

Given the large rear door of the Troopy, a DIY job would have yielded a larger fold-down table and made for the easier fitment of screws, nuts and bolts, given the hassle of lining the table holes with suitable fixing points inside the Troopy door. Perhaps this table is ideal for a Jeep Wrangler door?

The right gear for the right job on 4x4 gear

Available from: www.frontrunneroutfitters.com
RRP: $180
We Say: Well-priced; stable; ample space