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Roof Basket - OEM Rack - Modified and working

Discussion in '3rd Gen. Tacomas (2016+)' started by fajitas21, Nov 1, 2016.

  1. Nov 1, 2016 at 5:41 PM
    #1
    fajitas21

    fajitas21 [OP] XMF - Extreme Mexican Food fo Life!

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    Originally not Expo AF! Kinda Expo AF now...lame.
    Ok I searched for a while without much success, so I hope my incessant research and engineering helps someone improve this idea or at least get some helpful answers to their questions.

    The Problem:
    I have an OEM roof rack that I got from a fellow member. Installation was fine, finally I got it all buttoned up and loved the look of the OEM rack. It says on the bars themselves they are rated for 100lbs, so that was the first consideration. I needed a roof basket that actually fit...

    The Research:
    Most people say to get a 52 - 54" ish basket and add the 18" extension. I didn't want it to extend past the cab, and I wanted to keep weight down too. I did some poor research and bought the basket I wanted, which didn't fit.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004R34HDC/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s01?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    2016-11-01 12.51.19.jpg 2016-11-01 12.51.28.jpg

    You'll notice the basket is too short to reach the crossbars (in the basket) which is how it mounts around the vehicle crossbars. I had it scooted all the way back on the front setup. The front is properly mounted.

    Here's where I got stumped for a week. I debated different baskets, or even replacing the OEM roof bars, but I wanted to figure this out. I thought about welding additional supports, but noticed if I could get the back bar of the basket to mount to the crossbars I should be good to go. I wanted to use as much of the original hardware for the Rola as possible, but not modify it in a way as to ruin it's function, because I plan on using this basket on the wife's 4Runner too.

    I also debated another rack, which I do believe will work, it's just more expensive.

    https://www.amazon.com/Rhino-Rack-M...d=1478046176&sr=1-2&keywords=rhino+rack+xtray

    That one is roughly 4x as much, and approaching me just saying screw it and getting a Prinsu rack. I wanted something modular to move between vehicles, so I had to push on.

    I put it back on the bars today and measured some things:

    43" center to center of front to back crossbars, 46" far front to far back end.
    Bars are 2.5" wide, approx 1.5" thick (oval shaped).
    Interior dimensions: 38" to 40" wide baskets will fit no problem
    Baskets need to be approx 52"+, probably 54" or more to be long enough to work. The truck would easily do 62" without it sticking over the cab, or very little stickover.

    The Engineering:

    The ROLA hardware has a couple parts to clamp on the rack, there's a bracket, a plastic spacer (and rub preventer), a U-Bolt and a few handnuts to screw on the u-bolt to the top bracket. You'll see what I mean if you look at the hardware on Amazon.

    The u-bolts weren't deep enough to clamp the way I have the bars placed, so I went to the hardware store and bought some 5/16" thread 3.7" wide x 4" tall u-bolts, and some 1/2" tubing. I lubed the tubing (yes yes...) with some petroleum jelly and slid it over the u-bolt so it would provide protection to the metal u-bolt to the crossbar to prevent abrasion.

    I then took the plastic spacer and placed in my drill press and bored out a small section so the u-bolt will not fit through it. I hope the picture does it justice, but it allows the u-bolt I bought and the original bracket to both work, so it didn't destroy it if I used it the way it was built. Then I just used the bracket from the u-bolt, wrapped in electrical tape for protection and grip, to bend a bit over the bar to really cinch it down. Here's a few pictures.

    2016-11-01 17.01.03.jpg 2016-11-01 17.01.20.jpg 2016-11-01 17.01.33.jpg

    The Test:

    Ironically it is quieter with the basket on than the OEM bars are by themselves, but even with the basket unloaded, MPG certainly took a hit. I'd say I'd probably Average 17MPG tops, and I just did a 350 mile trip and averaged 21.2 without anything up there. That's noticeable, but for the additional space, a fair trade.

    Wind noise wasn't bad, even at 80MPH, which I rarely travel at, but I wanted to test at all speeds. Wife rode with me and said even at 80, the basket wasn't budging at all, it was solid as a rock.

    I checked the crossbars, the OEM ones have a weak point near wthe ends where they connect, seems kinda strange, but I'll not put more than perhaps 30lbs up there anyways, it's mainly lightweight bulky stuff I want up there, secured with a cargo net.

    I washed it, it's got a good look. I won't keep it on, it's about a 10 minute install each time, and I'll just put it on before a trip.

    2016-11-01 17.58.33.jpg 2016-11-01 17.58.45.jpg

    I'm going to improve the rear bracket, probably mock up something with wood and have a fab shop make me something better, but at least I have a solution.

    Cost:
    ROLA Basket - $115 shipped via Prime
    2 U-Bolts and 2' tubing - $11.50

    Tools used:
    9/16 wrench
    Vice (bend bracket)
    Drill press (w/ 3/8" bit)
    Knife (cut tubing and clean up plastic burs)
    Clamps
    Electrical tape

    I'll probably add more here when I get a better bracket built, but at this point at least it's functional and I feel it's secure. I'll feel more secure with it when I have a bracket that saddles around the bar, however.
     
  2. Nov 1, 2016 at 7:16 PM
    #2
    vale46

    vale46 Well-Known Member

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    Great post.
    Thanks for the info!
     
    fajitas21 [OP] likes this.
  3. Nov 1, 2016 at 7:19 PM
    #3
    fajitas21

    fajitas21 [OP] XMF - Extreme Mexican Food fo Life!

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    Originally not Expo AF! Kinda Expo AF now...lame.
    I mocked up a wooden bracket but it certainly wasn't a complete thought. More to come, as I have decided to complete a functional wood bracket and then likely get someone to make it out of plastic or aluminum.
     
  4. Mar 17, 2019 at 7:19 PM
    #4
    Jrive01a

    Jrive01a Well-Known Member

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    I been looking at this basket. Do u think it should mount just fine to OEM roof rails if you get the basket with the extension?
     
  5. Jan 29, 2020 at 12:09 PM
    #5
    hanahou7

    hanahou7 Well-Known Member

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    I plan on trying out this basket as well since I have the OEM roof rack and just plan to use the basket for camping trips. Do you know how high the sides are? Would you be able to mount monkey fists to mount a shovel and axe?
     
  6. Jan 29, 2020 at 12:42 PM
    #6
    Forge

    Forge Well-Known Member

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    Its a wonder someone on here doesn't make a basket that bolts into the OEM rack (where the pivot bolts are)
     
    Sixt7rsman, Shellshock and hanahou7 like this.
  7. Jan 29, 2020 at 8:42 PM
    #7
    fajitas21

    fajitas21 [OP] XMF - Extreme Mexican Food fo Life!

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    Originally not Expo AF! Kinda Expo AF now...lame.
    Howdy, man, I posted this a long time ago! I don't even have that truck anymore, I just have 2 4runners :)

    Would a quickfist mount to the rack. Yep. I even mounted lights to it with those brackets from tractor supply.

    You might have to fiddle around with the angle to make sure it won't hit the truck roof.

    In the end the best solution was bed bars and mount the rack on them. Something like this.
     
    hanahou7 likes this.
  8. Jan 29, 2020 at 9:31 PM
    #8
    LandLover

    LandLover Well-Known Member

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    Those are great racks but are steel so anyone going this route in a snowy area I would suggest sealing all joints with silicone. My rusted severely at center joint.
     
  9. Jan 30, 2020 at 12:39 PM
    #9
    hanahou7

    hanahou7 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the response! I appreciate it and will figure something out soon before it's time to hit the trails haha.
     
  10. Jul 7, 2020 at 5:11 AM
    #10
    frankybones

    frankybones Well-Known Member

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    I keep searching and Searching but I cant find anything and hoping someone might be able to help me out. Im looking for a basket out of the box I can get for my next trip that will fit onto my OEM rack. This looks like a viable solution but Id love to order it and just pop it on with no mods. Been looking at the Rhino Rack and the Yakima Mega Warrior but havent been able to confirm they will fit.
     
  11. Jul 7, 2020 at 5:45 AM
    #11
    ssd2k2

    ssd2k2 Well-Known Member

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    I have that Rola basket and if your crossbars are more than 41" edge to edge the basket won't fit without the extension or custom hardware like OP used.
    Before I bought that rack for myself I searched everywhere I could think of looking for a basket that would fit my Yakima crossbars, not overextend past the cabs roof line, and was less that $400. I'm sure if you go to a off road fabrication shop they could easily make you a custom basket that fits perfectly but it will cost you.
    Or if you don't care about it overhanging past the cab, pretty much every roof basket with an extension will fit.
     
  12. Jul 7, 2020 at 5:55 AM
    #12
    frankybones

    frankybones Well-Known Member

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    I dont really care about over hang as I have cap on the truck. I just want something that fits with the current rack and not have to purchase additional cross bars, hardware and last minute mods prior to my trip as Im cutting it close for time.
     
  13. Jul 7, 2020 at 6:48 AM
    #13
    ssd2k2

    ssd2k2 Well-Known Member

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    Then pretty much any basket will work, almost all of them have the extension option. It comes down to do you want to spend $150 on a cheap steel one that rusts out in a year, $250 on a better built steel one that will last year's as long as you remember to rust inhibit the inside, or $400+ on an aluminum/steel that is built properly and will last as long as your truck.
     
    frankybones likes this.
  14. Jul 7, 2020 at 6:59 AM
    #14
    frankybones

    frankybones Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the info. Im currently looking at the Yakima Load Warrior which is 44 x 39 on the medium size basket. Ive used thule and I like their products but dont seem to have anything large enough without buying an extension. This might be the right fit. Also thinking about just getting rid of the OEM rack and putting on a better rack/basket system but Im going to path of least resistance here. I didnt realize this would be such a pita.
     
  15. Jul 7, 2020 at 7:38 AM
    #15
    ssd2k2

    ssd2k2 Well-Known Member

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    The Yakima rack won't fit without the extender, I know because that's what I had before I bought the Rola basket. The problem is even though the overall length is long enough the mounts don't go all the way to the ends. The overall mounting length is about 12" less than the actual basket length. So while a Yakima rack is 44" long, the maximum bar width is somewhere around 32".
    If I hadn't already owned a Yakima roof rack, 6 bike racks that only fit the Yakima round bars, and a few other roof rack accessories, I definitely would have invested in a Prinsu style rack.
    I also found it to be a pain trying to jury rig my old equipment to my new Tacoma, but I really didn't feel like trying to sell all my old stuff on craigslist and buying $1500 worth of new roof rack equipment.
     
  16. Jul 7, 2020 at 7:44 AM
    #16
    frankybones

    frankybones Well-Known Member

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    I might look into just putting a rack on my camper shell and call it a day and sell my OEM rack which has been useless to me.
     
  17. Jul 7, 2020 at 5:33 PM
    #17
    fajitas21

    fajitas21 [OP] XMF - Extreme Mexican Food fo Life!

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    Originally not Expo AF! Kinda Expo AF now...lame.
    This is a good idea.
     
    frankybones likes this.
  18. Jul 12, 2020 at 6:00 PM
    #18
    Sixt7rsman

    Sixt7rsman μολὼν λαβέ

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    I bought a 2nd hand Rhino rack X-Tray pro. Fit perfect on my oem racks. Dude had it on a jeep that got toasted in a hailstorm. Mounted a hi lift & Light bar on it as well. I dig it. Some wind noise tho...

    20200205_145444.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2020
  19. Jul 13, 2020 at 5:51 AM
    #19
    fajitas21

    fajitas21 [OP] XMF - Extreme Mexican Food fo Life!

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    Originally not Expo AF! Kinda Expo AF now...lame.
    Looks good @Sixt7rsman and it's nice to find an option that doesn't need modification.
     
    Sixt7rsman likes this.
  20. Jul 13, 2020 at 10:44 AM
    #20
    Sixt7rsman

    Sixt7rsman μολὼν λαβέ

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    Thanks and exactly!!
     

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