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Old 02-05-2011, 06:41 PM   #1
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Roof Top Weight Capacity

Searched for information on here and the net,,,, just can't seem to find anything on max or recommended weight for rood top on a stock E-series van.

Been tossing the idea around for a roof top tent, however, thinking of weight of tent plus 2 people, and wondering on if the roof top is capable of handling it. This is referring to being attached to the rain gutters of vans top. For you guys with roof rack, how much weight do you feel you add to yours at time? Any one had any known issues?

Any ideas or opinions out there, fellas????
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Old 02-05-2011, 06:54 PM   #2
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Re: Roof Top Weight Capacity

No actual facts from Ford spec, but I've had 600lbs on my roofrack with no problems, also seen a few roof top tents on Ford vans, so I think you'll be fine. Just make sure you use a real roof-rack that spreads the load and not these generic ones (bar type) that put pressure on 4 small points.
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Old 02-05-2011, 10:31 PM   #3
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Re: Roof Top Weight Capacity

Ford doesn't really have a max weight for the gutters. I carry around 2,000 pounds on mine regularly (inc. rack weight). That's weight while driving, which matters much more that weight while parked.

The outer perimeter of the roof forms the rollover structure. It has to support 1.5x the loaded vehicle weight (max GVWR of the van body is 9500 pounds). So it's very strong. You are pretty much limited by the brackets of whichever rack you use. Yakima racks are limited to 150 pounds per bar, but commercial contractor racks range from 750-2000 pounds.
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Old 02-06-2011, 05:40 PM   #4
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Re: Roof Top Weight Capacity

Thanks for the input and answers!!!

As always, this site and people on here are always helpful.
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Old 02-09-2011, 10:20 PM   #5
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Re: Roof Top Weight Capacity

I used to run a top bunk with a patio behind it on my old 15 pass on yak racks mounted to the rain gutter. I can remember (sort of) 8 or 9 people up there dancing late into the night many times and I never had any issues.

here a shot with my canoe stacked on top of the top bunk


one with the top bunk popped

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Old 02-09-2011, 10:23 PM   #6
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Re: Roof Top Weight Capacity

I still have the patio if your interested in it I would like to get rid of it. Heck by a new top bunk and I may even throw it in for free!!!
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Old 02-10-2011, 12:57 AM   #7
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Re: Roof Top Weight Capacity

Here's some more roof pics (all the same van, just pre and post makeover)

Rafting gear for 35:



12 bikes + Climbing gear for 12:


2 AIRE Super D 14' Rafts + 2 kayaks:


And of course.... The after-rodeo roof party :
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Old 02-10-2011, 07:40 AM   #8
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Re: Roof Top Weight Capacity

Carringb wins the 'how much stuff can I stack on my roof' contest, though I dig the bunked canoe!

If you don't mind me threadjacking a bit (but still slightly on topic) what is the best load distribution/transfer for weight on a penthouse top? It seems that a side mount gutter style bracket that would take a traditional gutter mount rack or Yakima gutter rack would be best since it would transfer down the vertical member to the gutter. I know SMB says that you can put all sorts of people and weight on the top of these, but it just seems this is a better load path than point loading a few top mounts. Thoughts?
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Old 02-10-2011, 08:26 AM   #9
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Re: Roof Top Weight Capacity

Not sure what smb recommends but I always mount the load rack track right in line with my hardware bolts on the inside that way the fiberglass does not carry any of the weight it just becomes sandwiched between the interior hardware and roof rack hardware. I do this on my tops because it makes the stoutest set up and if you tie everything down to the rack then there is no need to unload the rack when raising the top so if you stop on the side of the road to sleep for a few hours just hit the button and crawl in bed in the morning lower it and your done.
Derek
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Old 06-20-2018, 03:28 PM   #10
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I know this thread is really old but it pertains to something I'm working on currently and I'm hoping you can help.

I have a 2003 e350 ext and I'm looking to mount the sturdiest roof rack rated to the most weight possible.

I've ready below that you guys have done up to 2000lbs without many issues, but I'm curious if you could shed light on what brand/style of racks you used, so I can mimic that with my build.

You help is appreciated <3
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