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Old 08-21-2011, 06:28 AM   #1
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Roof rack question

Hey All,

I've got a roof basket (http://www.surcoinc.com/) that I can put on my SMB (currently being built). I'm considering (sometime in the near future) putting it on & using it to carry my spare (currently a stock wheel residing under the van). This would allow me to 1) get a full sized spare in the near future and 2) potentially get a underbody storage (in the more distant future).

Has anybody else done this? I typically see spares mounted on the rear bumper - I've never seen one on the roof. This will be an electric pop top van & they (SMB) are saying that I can put ~ 200lbs on the roof. Bad idea? Does this lower the pop top motor life? Thougths? Experience with roof baskets? Pictures?

Thanks in advance!
Jon
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Old 08-21-2011, 08:46 AM   #2
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Re: Roof rack question

Are you going to put a hoist on the roof rack? Tires are seriously heavy and awkward to haul around on the ground, let alone hauling up a ladder. Conversely, dropping the spare off the roof is a good way to have it bounce back into your van, or roll away from you as you chase it down the hill.

I think a few people carry their spare on a roof rack, but it's sure not for me.


Herb
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Old 08-21-2011, 09:32 AM   #3
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Re: Roof rack question

I have to agree with Herb. That spare is heavy enough getting it from the rear rack, let alone from the top.

And the real reason I wouldn't do it is the couple of vans that have had bent top bows and broken bolts. I really don't want to increase the chances of the top failing.

Mike
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Old 08-21-2011, 10:12 AM   #4
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Re: Roof rack question

Great - thanks guys - I was guessing at those reasons, so it's good to hear your wisdom. I may still put the roof basket on, but only for lightweight items...

Speaking of which - if you've got a roof basket - what do YOU put in there? Feel free to answer with random stupid items of joy.
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Old 08-25-2011, 11:02 AM   #5
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Re: Roof rack question

Quote:
Originally Posted by BroncoHauler
Are you going to put a hoist on the roof rack? Tires are seriously heavy and awkward to haul around on the ground, let alone hauling up a ladder. Conversely, dropping the spare off the roof is a good way to have it bounce back into your van, or roll away from you as you chase it down the hill.

I think a few people carry their spare on a roof rack, but it's sure not for me.


Herb
Just use leverage to help it's very simple and easy to lift and lower the spare to/from the roofrack, even my wife can do it.
I use a long tie down (the kind you can remove the ratchet from), then put the S hook on the roofrack and feed it through the wheel and hold the other end. You have just 1/2 the weight of the wheel and it makes it very easy for me to raise and lower the wheel safely like this.

BTW, the spare on the roof makes perfect spot to carry firewood.
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Old 08-25-2011, 04:52 PM   #6
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Re: Roof rack question

I have a roof basket and I usually put overflow up there. Primarily it has been all my camping chairs and other awkward items like firewood. I also have a big cargo bag that the chairs go in and strap to the rack. I don't have an electric top so I have to take everything off before raising. I usually put the things up there that I need right away at camp knowing i have to unload before raising the top.

I actually have one side roof basket and the other side a cargo rocket box from Thule. Most overflow fits in the rocket box but the bigger items in the basket.
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