Install, Review & Overview: Simple Truck Bed Tire Carrier for the Toyota Tacoma from Spirit of 1876 – Fits Up to a 35″ Tire
Having a spare tire on your vehicle is a simple way to avoid being stranded both on and off-road.
Thankfully, the Tacoma still comes with a full-size spare tucked underneath the bed. The only problem is that it’s pretty crammed underneath your bed, and once you bump up a couple of tire sizes, there’s no longer enough room for the spare.
So, what can you do about it? The no-cost option would be to just throw it in the bed and strap it down. It’ll get the job done, but it’s not pretty and now your bed is already half full at all times.
The expensive option is to upgrade to a hitch mount carrier or even a full rear bumper. Not everyone has the desire or the funds to do that, so let me introduce you to the SHOE RACK from Spirit of 1876.
This small but mighty mount utilizes the stock bed rails from Toyota to hold the spare tire upright on the side of the bed. This way, the majority of your bed is available and your spare is easily accessible.
It is adjustable depending on how big your tire is, and once you have it set up, it can be easily removed in a couple of minutes. Its small size allows it to be stored almost anywhere when it’s not in use too. It’s the perfect in-between option for anyone running a different size tire and/or the weekend warrior.
Find It Online
- The SHOE RACK – Truck Bed Spare Tire Mount: Check Price
At first glance, I wasn’t quite sure how well this small mount would hold a full-size tire in place. After getting it installed and securing the wheel, I realized how perfect this mount is for me.
The weight of the tire rests on the bed, and the mount just holds it in place. Once the lug nuts are tightened down, that wheel is not moving, even on rough terrain.
The two-piece design allows you to adjust the height of the lugs to accommodate up to a 35” tire. My tires are just slightly bigger than stock, at 265/70/17, which still fits underneath in the original location.
I don’t necessarily have a need to always keep my spare accessible in the bed, but it would come in handy when off-roading. Eventually, this mount will become especially useful when I decide to make the jump to a larger tire size. It’s also worth noting that you gain a bit of clearance by moving your spare into the bed.
This mount is easy to throw in when I need it, and small enough to tuck away in the garage when I don’t. The SHOE RACK comes powder coated which gives it a nice clean look while providing protection from the elements.
The installation for this mount is super simple and only requires basic tools.
Let’s quickly run through how you mount this tire carrier to your bed rails.
Step 1. Insert Spare Tire Mount Backing Plate
Remove the end cap from the bed rail and slide the mount backing plate into the rail.
It will be a tight fit, but a little bit of force will get it into the rail system.
Step 2. Assemble Spare Tire Mount
Next, grab the two pieces that make up the actual mount itself. Push the two pieces of the mount together. They slide one over the other.
The brackets on the part with the lugs will be on the outside, the brackets for the bed rail side will be on the inside. Line up the slots and insert one bolt through each slot and hand tighten them.
Step 3. Secure Spare Tire Mount
Attach the assembled mount to the backing that is in the bed rail.
Fully tighten the nuts down to secure it in place.
Step 4. Adjust Mount for Tire Size
Place the spare tire in the bed and move it into place. Make sure the bolts holding the two pieces together are loose enough to allow movement.
Adjust the bracket so the lugs line up with the spare. Once it’s lined up, fully tighten the bolts on the bracket.
Step 5. Secure Tire to Mount
Using the provided lug nuts, tighten them down to secure the spare tire in place.
In five simple steps, everything is ready to go! This couldn’t be any easier.
This spare tire mount would be a great addition to any off-roading rig. It’s incredibly small for the job that it accomplishes. When in use, it leaves 80-90% of your bed available, and when it’s not needed, it can be easily stored in a garage cabinet.
Keeping the spare tire in the bed also makes it much easier to access, especially in tough terrain and when you’re out on the trail. It’s extremely well built and holds the spare securely in place. The price tag is much more affordable than going all out for a hitch-mounted tire carrier or swing-out bumper. I think this setup is ideal for those who don’t need to keep their spare accessible in the bed at all times, but instead only need it a couple of times per month.
This mount is also a great option for someone who upgrades tire sizes and can’t keep the spare underneath anymore. The only negative to this mount is that there isn’t anything provided that provides security against theft. However, a simple cable lock could be used to secure your wheel to the mount and to the bed itself.
I really appreciate how quickly I can swap the tire from under the truck to the bed mount. In 5 minutes, I can go from my daily driving set up to off-road ready. I also like that it can be stored easily without needing a huge space. Anyone in need of a better way to store their spare should seriously consider this mount.
Have you by chance tried it with an ARE cover? Looks like the top of the wheel might hit the cover as it angles in. Is it possible to angle the mount to adjust the angle of the tire? Thanks!
Unfortunately I never tried it with a cap on the back. With the way the two pieces of the mount fit together using two bolts, there probably isn’t a ton of adjustment to angle it. I suppose you could try it with just one connecting bolt but that probably won’t hold it as steady.