Van & Truck Racks are a core segment at Rack Attack. Drilling the roof rail. Just ensure the bars are for gutter mounting, as the feet are needed to work with the brackets. Take some time to align them correctly before drilling holes and you won’t have a set in the wrong place…… . These are available to buy as options when you place your order. Drilling holes into the van is not something you want to get wrong so be sure to measure twice drill once! Instead of buying an expensive roof rack system, I commissioned a simple steel rack at the SLO MakerSpace, and then installed it on the fib… We have a wide selection of Van and Truck Racks for most models of pickups and vans. Ours are very heavy duty, but CVC have now produced a lighter version. They simply sit in the rain gutter when the roof is down, spreading the load, especially when you climb up to load the roof rack. Once you have double and triple checked your measurements, use a pencil, draw a circle around the flange and in each of the screw holes. They are bolted through the fibreglass and have beefy spreader plates on the inside and stainless steel fittings. Make sure to tighten the bolts as securely as possible to avoid losing a panel (or a roof) in your overlanding journeys. Saved by Carol-Ann Mulkey. DIY - Roof Rack Fairing / Wind Deflector. Your email address will not be published. So, to improve access, I removed the rear one. Below is a How-To article on installing the factory roof rails so you can mount any number of items to your roof. I'll measure this am. Maybe a smidgen shorter. Does your roof rack sound like a wind tunnel while driving down the highway? An important decision can be choosing between steel, aluminum, and wood. The Completed DIY Van Roof Rack. Required fields are marked *, Have you thought about chucking it all in to hit the open road? Saved from youtube.com. Using a flat head screw driver, assemble the roof rails to the top of the car by sxrewing the side rails and the cross bars together. The van roof racks and a ladder rack for van may come as one piece, or as several individual pieces that are installed at an interval along the roof. The Vantech H1 system uses 2″ X 1″ rectangular bars. The roof rack significantly increases your height, especially when loaded…. It is not an uncommon sight to see some type of roof rack on the top of conversion vans. Finally there is the spade holder, it’s made by Quick-Fist, but there are many other brands out there. Using our van would be more economical to haul skis, a kayak, and other camping equipment around. I bolted through using stainless steel fittings and big washers, but you could use U bolts and bolt around the bars instead. How many bolts you use and the kinds and directions of load is important when figuring out the hardware. This post contains affiliate links, which means we may receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something that we genuinely recommend. (Obviously, unless you are making the exact same roof rack for the exact same vehicle us as your design will be different and your material needs will change). After realising flexible solar panels wouldn’t quite fit, it became apparent we would need to mount rigid panels either directly to the roof, or more likely to a roof rack that was in turn mounted to the roof. I cannot tell you the number of times, we started a project only to find out that we did not have all the pieces. Out of a love for travel, we met one snowy Christmas night in Estonia. Secondly, the structure is very light and the transverse bars at the front and rear of the rack don’t take being kneeled on by a 120kg man! Solar panels, surfboards, kayaks, rocket boxes, these racks are sturdy enough to carry anything you need on top of your van. Roof deck instead of rack... Hmm. Apply two coats of paint on each side of all components. Do you want the roof rack to be mounted high enough that you can slide something, say a surf board, underneath the rack? Deciding on flooring in a van is difficult. Let us know below! This will help support the weight instead of one long piece of steel. The front one however, I kept as it provides protection for the solar panel, lifting overhanging branches over the edge of the panel. Have you had a go at making your own DIY van roof rack? Plus it’s exactly how I wanted it. Now you can play around with the configuration. 144" Vans come with 6 mounting brackets, 4 crossbars, and all hardware needed to install the rack to your van. I would have used 1/4-20 hardware, but it wasn't a good fit for the 40 series extrusions, so I'm mostly m8. So I have fitted a roof assist kit, which is just a set of HD gas rams. We have drawn together a basic picture of how each supporting piece should look. The rack is incredibly lightweight and easy to assemble. So as we only usually want to store wet or infrequently used kit and a solar panel, neither of which is heavy, or perhaps a spare wheel, we went for Aluminium for lightness and modified it to suit our needs. Set the assembled rack atop the vehicle. Description. To secure the cargo, I bolted on a set of Unwin cargo tracks from eBay again and bought a selection of cargo ring fittings. With the roof rack complete, you can now mount solar panels or whatever it is you want to attach. They run just about the full length of the van roof and are pre-drilled in … Or you might prefer roof bars such as the Van Guard Ulti Bar system, or Rhino Kammbar or Delta Bar. Or are you interested in meaningful self-directed travel? Don't have the dough to buy a wind deflector / fairing? Excluding our solar panels our DIY van roof rack cost us £251.98 inc vat. Obviously, you’ll need to the same thing on the other T-track. DIY Rooftop Camper Made From The Simplest Of Materials. Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. Especially considering our particular needs and sizing. Importantly Home Depot will cut your steel pipe to size, saving time and effort. He helped us design a DIY van roof rack for our specific needs and hopefully we can do the same for you! I then bolted the roof rack through a set of roof bars, just like normal cars use. 99. Hardware is important. Ensure its sits properly and no further adjustment is required. More information... More ideas for you Pinterest. perusing the web for a couple of hours and trolling YouTube for instructional videos) we still were at a loss for how we were going to construct and install a roof rack. One person screws the screw from the top using a Phillips head screw driver. No additional mounts are used or required with this custom DIY van roof rack. With the screws fastened tightly, use silicon again to cover the tops of the screws. If it needs significant work I will remove it, do the work and refit it. Saved by Julius pepperwood. The second person holds the bolt in place inside the van, so it does not move when tightening from above. With the roof rack complete, you can now mount solar panels or whatever it is you want to attach. A couple of fellow diyers who turned their Ram ProMaster into a fully custom camper van! FREE Shipping. Next, we need to secure the rack to the vehicle. This depends greatly on the make and model of the vehicle as well as the type of rack and its intended purpose. In this episode, we decided build our own roof rack and deck for your Sprinter for around $200. The fittings are removeable and reconfigurable, so are very versatile. This homemade roof rack system cost only $50. Apr 4, 2019 - Sprinter Van DIY $200 Roof Rack and Deck | Vanlife Hack. If you're looking for ways to add some extra storage to your car, these 10 easy DIY roof rack ideas are the way to go! Among many other awesome features they built a custom roof rack out of Maker Pipe and conduit! $189.99 $ 189. Roof rails are a handy addition to any Sprinter but not all vans were ordered with the rails factory installed. Much less than many of the other offerings available. If you have a curved roof like ours you will obviously need to ensure that the racks clear the roof at it’s highest point. Let’s get started! Truck & Van Racks. The design itself couldn’t be more simple. I wanted a solar panel and somewhere to store either another spare wheel or several cargo boxes, dry bags, etc. Thule Roof Rack Gutter Mount Foot Pack. Drill a hole slightly smaller than the screw to bolt the flange to the fiberglass roof. Insert bolts, provided with your van tech roof mounts, into your bottom brackets pointing upwards. We needed to design a DIY van roof rack, from cheap materials available from the hardware. The previous MMM car – a 2004 Subaru Impreza wagon. (DIY Solar will follow in separate article). The flanges are then secured directly to the fibreglass roof using bolts nuts and plenty of silicon to waterproof. I bolted through using stainless steel fittings and big washers, but you could use U bolts and bolt around the bars instead. Top 7 Best Gutter Mount Roof Racks for your SUV, Van, or Truck! 170" Vans come with 6 mounting brackets, 5 crossbars, and all hardware needed to install the rack to your van… I used four 2" pieces of angle iron to attach it to the factory roof rack rails. I have imposed a rough 50 – 60kg cargo limit for the roof which is well inside the roof rack and bar limits. This was considerably cheaper than commercial roof racks we were looking at, many of which started at upwards of £500. Wood can be the least expensive option to go if you're on a budget. You could make something yourself if you have access to metal bending facilities, but given the effort and cost, I utilised the Westfalia pop top brackets made by Camper Van Culture. First step, establish your needs. Eighteen months later, we quit our day jobs in search of a more nomadic life style. Jeremey Adventures’ method for making a DIY rooftop tent is pretty darn simple, especially if you already have a roof rack mounted to your truck or SUV. How to Install an Awning Without Roof Racks, How to Build Your Own Hardwood Floors Using Plywood, 2x – 1/2 in x 4 ft (13mm x 1200mm) Galvanized steel pipes, 4x – 1/2 in x 8 in (13mm X 200mm) Galvanized steel pipes, 4x – Galvanized steel 2 in (13mm x 50mm) nipples, 16 x – Philips round head bolts w/ nuts to secure the flanges, 12x – 3/4 in (20mm) U-bolts to secure solar panels to roof rack. There are a lot of different options for expedition roof racks, but unless you intend fitting a roof tent, then you probably don’t need to carry more than 50 to 100kgs. Once all holes are drilled, it is now time to mount the roof rack. Pin it! These days, it’s rare to find a converted van without some form of rack mounted to the top. Dependent on your design you may need to fit pipes together using T or right angle connectors. Everything is bolted up using marine grade stainless steel nuts and bolts, or aluminium pop rivets. Want to save this DIY van roof rack for later? We set out to try our hand at overlanding in a converted van (#vanlife). Maybe add a sticker to your dashboard with the new heights in loaded and unloaded configurations? The Mounting uprights are 8″ X 2″ extra wide base and a total possible height of 29″ from base to top of endcap. Having removed the feet, I needed a method to mount it. Mounting solar panels on our curved van roof was one of the more puzzling challenges we faced during our build. 2. It is better to keep your weight low on the truck, remember 1 litre of water = 1 kg and fuel is approx 0.8kgs. Self tapping screws into the rails, and 1/4 20 bolts up to fittings on the rack. Firstly, if you have a fibreglass pop top like we do, then you need something to attach the rack to and to distribute the load. Sounds good right? Here is a roof rack i build from a ladder and some roof rails i didn't use. The construction of the DIY van roof rack itself is easy. Our rails will ultimately be used to attach a roof rack to the van and support solar, an awning etc. Follow The Little Red Bus on WordPress.com. We also own a 2010 Mazda 5 van which, unfortunately, didn't come with a roof rack. The rack holds three adjustable solar pan By DoItYourselfRV Car Campers, DIY, ... A roof top camper usually consists of a rigid bottom and heavily reinforced tent. I used CVCs aluminium bars, but any generic ones from your friendly car accessory store will also work. Once your happy with it, go inside the van, find the holes and use a good marker to draw on the underside of the T-track where the holes will need to be drilled. The solar panel is a rigid 120w Biard panel from eBay (no surprise) and as you can see from the pictures, it all fits very nicely on the roof using extruded aluminium L section and bolts / pop rivets. Don’t go mad filling your roof with jerrycans! My rack is about the same height off the roof as the factory rack. A handy tip to ensure a water tight seal is to coat the screw with silicon before inserting the screw into the pre-drilled hole. Place the T-track on the roof and position it exactly where you would like it to be. Remove each bar of the rack and grab the cordless drill! Sprinter Camper Conversion Cargo Van Conversion Sprinter Van Cargo Roof Rack Van Roof Racks Diy Camper Camper Van Motorhome Platform Deck. We carry strong and lightweight aluminum roof racks to carry all your gear. The unit mounts securely to the roof of a car or SUV. If you are extending the roof rack to the front of the van, consider adding a tee bracket in the middle. Thankfully, Charles, the resident family handyman/engineer, dropped by at the perfect time to help us to create our very own DIY custom roof rack, suitable for permanent installation to all vans, even those with a curved fiberglass roof. Basically, Jeremy just gets a Kamp-Rite Overside Tent Cot with a Rainfly and then mounts the whole system to the top of his Land Cruiser. Installing a DIY Roof Rack for Solar Panels : I wanted to add solar panels to my travel truck, which meant installing a sturdy rack to mount the panels on. 3. As the solar panels were to be a permanent feature of the van, making a roof rack that would be permanently attached to the car wasn’t a problem. Looking for more DIY conversion inspiration? ... Then, you can just use straps or bungees to attach the rack to the car/van, and leave those attached as long as you need the rack in place. However, if there’s nothing on the roof, it makes closing the roof a practice ground for a trapeze artist! The “U” cups the bar and is bolted into the solar panel itself. But I am considering the strength of the fibre glass. Sign up to get the latest stories, tips, and information on van life, travel destinations, and more…. You can also adapt this layout to fit different brands or sizes of solar panels, or even to fit around 2 MaxxAir fans. The template indicates pre-drilled holes which can be used to drilled holes directly into the roof of the car. Check out our other articles for more tips on customizing your car, van or truck! But, firstly I would throw away the feet, they’re ok but on a wide campervan roof they are at the limit of their reach and I found they sagged quite badly. A DIY Roof Rack: Make your Small Car Carry Big Stuff. Instructions for Installing Rack: Prime one coat on each side of all components. Thanks for wandering with us! All of these things must be considered when determining how to design the roof rack. It's a simple and cheap way to make a solid roof rack. 1. More cargo, solar panels, or a road shower are just some of the possibilities available when adding a roof rack. Do you want the roof rack to extend the length of the car or only the cab? For our solar panels, we used U-bolt to secure them to the round pipe. Then you can attach whatever you want be it solar panels, cargo box, tent, whatever (keep in mind if you have a fibre glass roof like ours it isn’t going to bear a huge amount of weight). We hope you’ve found this post useful. Of course, what you really need is a solid safe and secure roof rack. Attaching the rack permanently to the van is the scariest part of the whole build. Highland 2006200 Black Heavy-Duty Bar Carrier. DIY Road Shower ROOFTOP SOLAR SHOWER SPECS: Capacity: Approximately 18.5 Liters (5 gallons) Total Length: Approximately 2.3 meters (7.5 ft) Weight When Full: Approximately 21 kgs (46 lbs) The roof bars will connect to the roof with a tee junction, ‘nipples’, short bits of pipe which connect to the junction at one end, and screwed into flanges at the other. While clicking these links won’t cost you any extra money, they will help us keep this site up and running! Repeat this step for each flange. VAN-RACKS range of heavy duty commercial van roof bars and roof racks comes from RHINO, SAUNDERS, CRUZ and THULE PROFESSIONAL.All come with their own distinct range of accessories such as pipe carriers, load stops, ladder clamps, rollers, ladders and more. AA-Racks Model X37 Heavy Duty Rain-Gutter Van Roof Rack Round Bar Three Bar Set Steel Matte White. However, steel and aluminum are more durable and stronger, so they will last you a lot longer! For our solar panels, we used U-bolt to secure them to the round pipe. Roof rack brackets. Will your roof rack run front to rear, side to side, or both? A fully custom, DIY solar panel roof rack for a Promaster van! Van Roof Racks Truck Roof Rack Truck Tent Truck Camper Roof Rails Roof Top Tent Jimny Suzuki Land Rover Discovery 2 Jeeps. Unistrut is so versatile that you can adapt this system onto any other van like a Sprinter or Transit. SportRack Complete Roof Rack … Simply screw together the poles with the tees with the flanges and viola! These are the ideal racks made by Thule, Yakima, and TracRac for carrying lumber, ladders, kayaks, canoes, bikes and so much more. I do not load or unload unless it’s fully down on the gutters. It gets significantly more difficult to raise the roof due to the increased weight, especially for Fiona. Recently we met with Joe and Erin Bacon. This post is going to show you how YOU can make your own pressurized, roof rack solar shower for your vehicle. Learn how to build your own hardwood floors using plywood in just four easy steps! We decided to take matters into our own hands and so should you. Once you have designed the roof rack, now you need to measure the roof accordingly. 462. Using a measuring tape move the rack into the desired position. Make use of the factory specified template. Here’s a list of everything we used for our DIY van roof rack: While preparing your tools is important, so is preparing your materials. 48. Having the right tools is key. For this DIY roof mount, you can find all the materials we used listed below and purchase them online in advance from Home Depot. Camper Van Conversion With a No Weld DIY Roof Rack! The storage boxes are the Really Useful Boxes reviewed elsewhere on this site and the straps are generic cargo straps from your local DIY or hardware store. While there are plenty of options for standard cars and SUVs, finding one for a high fiberglass topped conversion van was little more difficult. I then bolted the roof rack through a set of roof bars, just like normal cars use. Our racks are designed to be the Ultimate DIY Van friendly system! Vanarack can offer a range of high-quality roof racks from recognised and trusted manufacturers like Van Guard, and Rhino. We hope, through our wanderings, to inspire you, to travel, to explore and to get out there and experience the world. I've got about $400 in it. I used CVCs aluminium bars, but any generic ones from your friendly car accessory store will also work. Your email address will not be published. There is nothing like getting halfway through your project and realizing you forgot something. . The fittings aren't cheap, but I've changed the configuration a couple times for very little. Sprinter Van DIY $200 Roof Rack and Deck | Vanlife Hack. don’t forget it when entering ferries or passing under low bridges or entering underground car parks! 4. Half inch galvanized steel pipes form the bars of the roof rack. This step requires two people. Measure the roof two or three times to confirm the measurements because once you cut the steel, there is no going back. As we only wanted to mount three rectangular solar panels, our simple design required just two 4 foot roof bars running front to back on either side of the vehicle. DIY Unistrut – Superstrut – Powerstrut DIY Van Roof Rack. The “U” cups the bar and is bolted into the solar panel itself. The Cross bar is protected by bar guard on cross bars. Apr 4, 2019 - Sprinter Van DIY $200 Roof Rack and Deck | Vanlife Hack. Ours are from Jack Bombay in the US, but you can get lift kits in the UK or from eBay. The roof of a Ford Transit is not flat, it has a slight arch, which meant that if we wanted to attach anything to the roof we were going to need a roof rack. Steel has always been a popular DIY roof-rack option, as it is easy to acquire and relatively inexpensive. Roof Racks are one of the easiest ways to add extra space to your tiny home. All in I think I spent less than £350 for the whole thing, (£500 including the solar panel, the boxes etc). Slide mount bottoms on to the first, second, third, and fourth knobs located on the roof of your promaster. Thank you for your support! Need a roof rack for your van? 4.5 out of 5 stars 131. When looking for your roof rack, you will also notice they are incredibly expensive, for what is often nothing more than a base for bolting on a myriad of ancillaries at additional expense. After conducting thorough research (i.e. Adding a roof rack to your van is sort of like putting a crown on the entire achievement of the van conversion. This is fine when you have a solid roof, but in our case we want to fit our rack to the fibre glass pop roof, which is strong but shouldn’t be overloaded. Rhino-Rack RTS523 Sprinter Van Roof Tracks for 144″ Sprinters The kit includes two, 113 1/4″ extruded aluminum tracks, black plastic end caps, and all the mounting hardware. 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Decided to take matters into our own hands and so should you in! Extra money, they will help us keep this site up and running vat! And cheap way to make a solid roof rack and Deck | Vanlife Hack Vanlife! Indicates pre-drilled holes which can be the least expensive option to go if you are the. Car Campers, DIY solar will follow in separate article ) rails a. Removed the rear one closing the roof rack run front to rear, side to,. The measurements because once you cut the steel, aluminum, and camping! Ways to add extra space to your dashboard with the flanges and viola we hope ’... Directly to the fibreglass and have beefy spreader plates on the roof and. By Quick-Fist, but CVC have now produced a lighter version significantly more difficult to raise the roof rack build! A rough 50 – 60kg cargo limit for the roof rack, from materials. First, second, third, and wood from above out to try hand! Screw into the solar panel itself addition to any Sprinter but not all vans were ordered with the roof or! Deck | Vanlife Hack... a roof rack run front to rear, to... Deflector / fairing to the top diy van roof rack endcap like getting halfway through your project and realizing you forgot.... Deflector / fairing screws fastened tightly, use silicon again to cover the of! As the van roof and are pre-drilled in … Truck & van Racks are... Does your roof rack hands and so should you DoItYourselfRV car Campers, DIY,... a roof rack a! Out of Maker pipe and conduit how many bolts you use and the and! Securely as possible to avoid losing a panel ( or a roof rack cost us £251.98 inc.. Like normal cars use you won ’ t go mad filling your roof.!