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dbornemann 11-11-2008 06:05 PM

Junkyard Roof Rack
After pricing the roof racks at all the websites and catalogs and deciding they're all a ripoff, I took a drive to see what the local pick-n-pull had to offer. I found a mid 90's Ford Explorer Sport with a roof rack system in good shape minus about 10 years of sun and dust damage. It has two rails, two adjustable cross bars, and two adjustable rings for tie-downs. Simply removed a few screws to take it off, gave the guy $25 for it and I had a new roof rack!

It was about 11" too long to fit on my hard top, so I taped off what I didn't want and used my Dremel to cut the ends of both the rails and the plastic pieces that go under the rails. (Cutting one end would have left me without a screw hole near the end, so if you're doing this make sure you cut the end that has a hole around 12" in) Lightly sanded all the metal pieces and gave them 2 coats of Krylon black.

The next day when the paint was dry I put the rack together, made sure it was square, and marked off the hard top for the first 2 holes. My top was still on its storage cart which made it much easier to work on. I loosely screwed the "top" screws in then marked the rest. I went with a total of eight screws, four per rail. As far as hardware to mount it, I used the screws that came with it as the heads fit in the rails nicely. They were metric, 6mm, and I bought 8 nuts (with the nylon inside), 8 fender washers, 8 lock washers and 16 rubber washers to fit them. I used some silicone on each of the holes to keep the water out, then put one rubber washer between the rail and the top, and another between the screw head and the rail.

All in all I'm very pleased with the end product. It looks great, will accept a snowboard rack as well as other roof racks, and it only cost me about $40. $25 for the rack, $6 for paint, and less than $10 for all the hardware.

the pieces as they arrived

one of the tie down rings and a rail in their "before" condition

rails taped to be cut

rails painted up

all the other hardware ready to be installed

the rack mounted to the top, before the top went on

the finished product!

GOLENJEEPTJ 11-11-2008 06:23 PM

Looks great! Nice job! What did you use to seal hardware? Silicone I assume.

larry76010 11-11-2008 06:46 PM

Nice job!! Looks real good!!:wave:

lifted89xj 11-11-2008 06:49 PM

wow nice work it looks sotre bought and expensave good job!

i buult my own roof basket and im making 2 more for friends of mine

SOLIDJP44 11-11-2008 06:52 PM

man that looks sharp on a hardtop, wish i had a hardtop now

conifers4 11-11-2008 07:32 PM

Fantastic. great work! I may borrow your idea.

JWitt333 11-11-2008 07:41 PM

looks good

dbornemann 11-11-2008 07:54 PM

Thanks for all the compliments guys!


Originally Posted by GOLENJEEPTJ (Post 5991481)
What did you use to seal hardware? Silicone I assume.

Just some silicone caulk I had in the garage. That plus the two layers of rubber washers should keep the moisture out. If not, it's still a Jeep inside- it'll live. :D

bpowa 11-14-2008 04:53 AM

was this a oem ford explorer rack?

singleshot 11-14-2008 06:38 AM

Great work..

2 questions for ya.

1. Could you post a pic of the inside attachements?

2. Any extra wind noise? I've been wanting to do a roof rack, but I've heard horror stories about whistling at highway speeds and such.

Again, looks good and great work


bucks11 11-14-2008 06:44 AM

Looks great....Might consider something like it in the near future...

You gonna put a basket on it?

JeepRocks86 11-14-2008 07:45 AM

turned out pretty good. any interior photos of the bolts? Anything special with the bolts you used?

JEEP97TJ 11-14-2008 09:08 AM

Great Job, it looks factory. :2thumbsup:

Unlimited04 11-14-2008 09:09 AM

that looks great. i may copy that idea :)

Wif 11-14-2008 09:15 AM

That looks real sweeeeet. I'm gonna steal that idea as well.

BTW .. while you have that spray paint out, you might want to touch up that pass side door mirror :D

The time now is 02:45 PM.

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