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Old 05-11-2017, 01:02 PM   #1
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What do you use your roof rack for?

Hey guys,

I'm interested in getting an aluminess style roof rack (baja box, expedition rack, w/e you want to call them) in hopes that I could store cargo up there when on the road. Are most people using their racks for storage or more for mounting lights, solar panels, kayak carriers, etc. Are those cargo racks worth having for luggage, firewood, chairs, etc? Or is storing cargo on the roof a PITA?

They look cool as all hell but I don't want to buy one and then find out its not great for storage.

If you have any pics of your rack loaded up that would be great!

-Mickey
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Old 05-11-2017, 02:25 PM   #2
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Mine is for solar, lighting and cargo. I have a Yak-pod up top for any friends who come along. At least it frees up some space inside. If I'm by myself I just leave it empty. I did have a roof top bag, but didn't really like it.
Weight while the top is going up or down is a huge issue. I'm basically cautious & remove anything unusually heavy each time I lift the roof. Snow on the roof is more of an concern now. I did have Aluminess build the rack out of smaller lighter stock to help offset the weight. The tubing is still large enough to run power wires in it.
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Old 05-11-2017, 02:41 PM   #3
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Weight while the top is going up or down is a huge issue. I'm basically cautious & remove anything unusually heavy each time I lift the roof.
Do you have an electric pop top or manual?
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Old 05-11-2017, 02:56 PM   #4
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His is electric, but it doesn't much matter.. Max weight on an SMB top is maybe 150 lbs or so. But I wouldn't want to lift that much on a manual.

Most people remove heavier stuff from roof rack before raising roof.
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Old 05-11-2017, 03:03 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daveb View Post
Mine is for solar, lighting and cargo. I have a Yak-pod up top for any friends who come along. At least it frees up some space inside. If I'm by myself I just leave it empty. I did have a roof top bag, but didn't really like it.
Weight while the top is going up or down is a huge issue. I'm basically cautious & remove anything unusually heavy each time I lift the roof. Snow on the roof is more of an concern now. I did have Aluminess build the rack out of smaller lighter stock to help offset the weight. The tubing is still large enough to run power wires in it.

DaveB -

Do you have any close up photos of your roof rack? Also, do you know what size Aluminess used in the fabrication?
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Old 05-11-2017, 04:04 PM   #6
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DaveB -

Do you have any close up photos of your roof rack? Also, do you know what size Aluminess used in the fabrication?
I'd have to dig for the info. I'd think Aluminess would have the design specs. I have an aluminum cover with the Sportsmobile logo covering the 42" bar light, 6 smaller side and rear lights and two frontal side lights. The solar panels are 2 135w kyocera panels. The Yakama box isn't made anymore and I hope the newer models will fit if mine breaks.
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Old 05-11-2017, 04:07 PM   #7
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Solar Panels, gear storage in weather proof bags and space to strap two ten foot long 30 inch wide Stand Up Paddle Boards.

Side and Rear LED Lamps, two each, are bolted through the flat strap/columns that support the rack rail. There's pre drilled holes for this set up all the way around the rack.

We've tied off sun shades to the rails, strapped gear slings and hung our climbing racks.

Gary spread a huge custom made cushion up there last year in the sierras and spent a freezing night 'enjoying the milky way'...

But, if push came to shove... we gotta admit that we are less rack mandatory travelers than we used to think we were. It such a drag on the aero profile when we start piling blocks of gear up there, we don't like people probing our stuff, and ...

ok, ok it is a bad ass set up that sure tops off the rig. like a cherry on a sundae...
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Old 05-11-2017, 05:34 PM   #8
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Funny you posted this- I logged on today to ask the same question!

We just picked up a Yakima rack for our van and we're getting a cargo box tonight- I love Craigslist! I think we are going to store our screen tent, our folding table, and the camp chairs in ours to free up the space under the sofas.

Our van is an '86 GMC, so we plan on unloading the top and sprinkling it with Holy Water before we pop the penthouse.
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Old 05-11-2017, 05:53 PM   #9
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His is electric, but it doesn't much matter.. Max weight on an SMB top is maybe 150 lbs or so. But I wouldn't want to lift that much on a manual.

Most people remove heavier stuff from roof rack before raising roof.
The SMB website lists 200 pounds as the maximum weight on the Penthouse Roof. That's for current production vehicles, it may have changed over the years. It doesn't state it, but my assumption and how I approach it is that 200 pounds is the maximum weight that can be added and still lift the PH, we all know it will take far more than that when loaded in the down position.
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Old 05-11-2017, 10:45 PM   #10
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The SMB website lists 200 pounds as the maximum weight on the Penthouse Roof. That's for current production vehicles, it may have changed over the years. It doesn't state it, but my assumption and how I approach it is that 200 pounds is the maximum weight that can be added and still lift the PH, we all know it will take far more than that when loaded in the down position.
This is close to 200 lb. with both boats loaded with Baja camp gear. Electric top - obviously. Yakima racks.
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