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Will a Thule camper shell rack support the weight of the shell for hoisting purposes?

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Old 11-08-2010, 08:35 AM   #1
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Will a Thule camper shell rack support the weight of the shell for hoisting purposes?

I have a Leer 100xr with a Thule rack with tracks installed by Leer. Has anyone hoisted their shell in their garage hanging by the thule bars? I don't know if they will support the weight of the shell...
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Old 11-08-2010, 08:55 AM   #2
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You may want to call a local LEER distributer and see if they're rated for uplift like that. I'm sure they are because the amount of force on those racks from the wind catching a cargo box at highway speed is fairly substantial but never hurts to hear it from the people who made it.
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Old 11-08-2010, 09:38 AM   #3
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I don't think I would. The weight capacity of the rack is about 150 lbs. That's downward force where the feet of the rack spread the weight out. The tracks are held down by screws, but the weight of anything put on the bars is spread out by the track (near the foot). If you were pulling up on it, the screws that hold the track down would be the only thing supporting the weight of the shell.
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Old 11-08-2010, 10:31 AM   #4
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Evil Monkey is exactly right......I would not even consider it.

But, let us know how you make out if you attempt this.
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Old 11-08-2010, 10:36 AM   #5
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If you have something (an aluminum plate or something else with a large surface area) that can spread the load out across the inside of the cap, I'd say go for it. If the only thing on the inside of the cap where the bolts/ screws go through is a washer, then no.
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Old 11-08-2010, 11:24 AM   #6
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Yeah that's what I figured. I have moved the shell that way, but figured it wasn't the best idea for prolonged storage. It would have made it so much easier to hoist though.

Thanks all.
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Old 11-08-2010, 02:45 PM   #7
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[quote=nomad;2364715]If you have something (an aluminum plate or something else with a large surface area) that can spread the load out across the inside of the cap, I'd say go for it.

This should work and ought to be a fairly simple mod.
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Old 11-08-2010, 03:53 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bagster View Post
This should work and ought to be a fairly simple mod.
I still don't think I'd trust it. The screws that hold the track to the top of the cap aren't that big. You're still putting a lot of weight on the threads to hold that cap up even if you put an aluminum strip on the inside. It's not the same type of force on the screws.

Pushing down on the cap, like a loaded rack might, the weight is resting on the wide foot packs and the tracks, not the screws. The screws just keep the track from moving side to side. They don't support the weight of anything put on the rack. Pulling it up, the strain is entirely on the screws.
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Old 11-08-2010, 04:15 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bamma View Post
Yeah that's what I figured. I have moved the shell that way, but figured it wasn't the best idea for prolonged storage. It would have made it so much easier to hoist though.

Thanks all.
Something like this:
http://home-and-garden.webshots.com/...34642736HkEiTo
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Old 11-08-2010, 04:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evil Monkey View Post
I still don't think I'd trust it. The screws that hold the track to the top of the cap aren't that big. You're still putting a lot of weight on the threads to hold that cap up even if you put an aluminum strip on the inside. It's not the same type of force on the screws.

Pushing down on the cap, like a loaded rack might, the weight is resting on the wide foot packs and the tracks, not the screws. The screws just keep the track from moving side to side. They don't support the weight of anything put on the rack. Pulling it up, the strain is entirely on the screws.
A light load on the roof rack catching a lot of wind I would bet puts more than 100 lbs of uplift on those mounting points. Picture one of those large enclosed fiberglass cargo carriers. They catch a lot of wind. If you put an aluminum plate underneath as reinforcement it should hold the weight fine. Just my opinion but it's not like this thing is going to be swinging around and having people hanging from it, just a static load.
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Old 11-08-2010, 05:03 PM   #11
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I have a pully system to take off my cap. at first I used the roof rack, no problem. Now I have 4 felt lined hooks 1 in each side window 2 in the rear slider. works well
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Old 11-08-2010, 05:03 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evil Monkey View Post
I still don't think I'd trust it. The screws that hold the track to the top of the cap aren't that big. You're still putting a lot of weight on the threads to hold that cap up even if you put an aluminum strip on the inside. It's not the same type of force on the screws.

Pushing down on the cap, like a loaded rack might, the weight is resting on the wide foot packs and the tracks, not the screws. The screws just keep the track from moving side to side. They don't support the weight of anything put on the rack. Pulling it up, the strain is entirely on the screws.
I bet even those smaller screws have hellacious tensile strength. Like Pugga said, it's a static load. With proper backing (inside the cap), I don't see any issues.
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Old 11-08-2010, 06:33 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pugga View Post
A light load on the roof rack catching a lot of wind I would bet puts more than 100 lbs of uplift on those mounting points. Picture one of those large enclosed fiberglass cargo carriers. They catch a lot of wind. ...
I doubt it. Even if it were flat and square, the air would push around on all sides about evenly (some would go left, some right, some up and some down). It's going to take the path of least resistance. Most of the force would be pushing backwards. Plus, most cargo carriers are angled so that most of the wind goes up and over the carrier.

That said, if most people think it's fine, then so be it. I prefer to err on the side of caution, especially if I'm giving advice to others.
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Old 11-08-2010, 06:40 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j83soldier View Post
Now I have 4 felt lined hooks 1 in each side window 2 in the rear slider. works well
This is kind of what I was thinking would be better.
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Old 11-08-2010, 07:52 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evil Monkey View Post
This is kind of what I was thinking would be better.
I mean both work fine roof rack or hooks, I do not store the topper suspended though. I back in hook up suspend the topper drive out and set it down on saw horses
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Old 11-08-2010, 09:33 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j83soldier View Post
I mean both work fine roof rack or hooks, I do not store the topper suspended though. I back in hook up suspend the topper drive out and set it down on saw horses
I know that. I'm just saying I'd be more comfortable with the second idea. The rack itself is only recommended to hold 150 lbs. By suspending it from the rack, you're overloading it's stated carrying capacity by 50 lbs and doing it in a way it wasn't intended to be used.
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Old 07-08-2012, 07:14 PM   #17
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I had an ARE that I always hung. Never any problems. And we use a pallet fork on the front end loader to remove both my friends Leer and my ARE toppers by the rack.
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