Homemade bike rack for camper...(pics)

Discussion in 'My Favorite Mods, Tips, Tricks (and Blunders!)' started by JJMAC1, Apr 2, 2011.

  1. JJMAC1

    JJMAC1 New Member

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    May 29, 2010
    Was going to purchase a full yakima set and the cost was just too much. So I decided to make a homemade rack using superstruts and cone nuts.

    I am just waiting for the silicone to dry and then it will be painted black and I will at other accessories. Fits 4 bikes. Final pics to follow..
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  2. Big_kid

    Big_kid Virginia Beach, VA

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    I think I need to watch this thread- you've piqued my interest!
     
  3. regis101

    regis101 New Member

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    Feb 21, 2011
    I'm an electrician by trade. Unistrut is used quite often. Good stuff.
     
  4. Hawkester

    Hawkester Hawkesnest

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    May 23, 2008
    SE Wisconsin
  5. jshulenberger

    jshulenberger New Member

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    Sep 29, 2010
    Hawkester: Is that Aluminum Unistrut? Where did you get it? I have been looking for something just like this for the same type of application.
     
  6. RFryer

    RFryer Hopkinton, MA

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    JJMac1,

    What did you use to attach the superstruts, just silicone?
     
  7. Hawkester

    Hawkester Hawkesnest

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    May 23, 2008
    SE Wisconsin
    Yes. I used aluminum becasue it is far lighter than the steel and it is more than strong enough. I work as a building engineer so scrap stuff is always available. You can also get it thru McMaster Carr http://www.mcmaster.com/#strut-channel-systems/=bqtq8j
     
  8. JJMAC1

    JJMAC1 New Member

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    May 29, 2010
    The 3 ft spans of superstrut on top are connected to a 6 foot span of superstrut on the inside of roof via 1 1/2 inch bolts and nuts. I used rubber flashing (used around window when installing them) under the superstruts on top. Then silicone. I am going to top it off and paint the whole top with grizzly grip.....

    I can now have a house party on my camper. In addition, on the inside I have super strut beams to connect hanging shelves for storage...

    More pics to come when I get back from vacation and its all painted.....
     
  9. jshulenberger

    jshulenberger New Member

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    Sep 29, 2010
    Good idea! Your pics above made me think how nice it would be to go all the way across to add structure to the top, but you've got that covered! Did you curve the superstrut to contour to the slight crown to the roof? If so, how?
     
  10. bud121156

    bud121156 Western North Carolina

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    Apr 15, 2007
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    Nice work, JJMAC1
     
  11. JJMAC1

    JJMAC1 New Member

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    May 29, 2010
    The pup is a 2009 Fleetwood Cobalt. The roof is fairly flat. There is a very slight curve but almost un-noticeable. So no necessity to curve the Super strut.

    I would have definitely gone all the way across if I didnt have the spine down the middle of the camper roof. So I had to do 3 foot spans. On the inside, the strut spans the roof...
     
  12. JJMAC1

    JJMAC1 New Member

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    May 29, 2010
    Finished!

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  13. Yellowkayak

    Yellowkayak Popups.....when sleeping on the ground gets to you

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    Mar 13, 2007
    JJ, nice set up but may I make a suggestion. Put bungee cords on the rear tires of your bike/s so they won't hope and down on the pups roof, that could lossen the front clamps and there goes your bike on a bump. Nice set up though! Also how in the world did you get those long bolts thru that "question mark" shape bike rack part and then thru the square tubing?

    JJ
     
  14. JJMAC1

    JJMAC1 New Member

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    May 29, 2010
    JJ,

    NOt sure if your referring to the eye bolts on the back section of the rack? If so, those are attached with the cone nuts to the super strut. They are there for the same reason you suggested.... To hold down the back tire of the bike....

    Thanks,
     
  15. jshulenberger

    jshulenberger New Member

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    Sep 29, 2010
    Looks good! I thing the black gives it a nice contrast. How about some pictures of the inside super strut?
     
  16. DSCinVegas

    DSCinVegas New Member

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    Sep 16, 2010
    Great Job, JJ! Looks like a pro installation. That basket is just the right size for firewood..

    I've been trying to figure out a solution to adding one to mine as well (storage rack for 2 trunks).. the roof is not perfectly flat, has that common slow on the front/rear ends.. I thought maybe even using PVC on little legs and creating a basket.. would allow me to adjust the height on the "low" end. Still trying to figure it out. Anyone do this or something similar with PVC tubing?
     
  17. JJMAC1

    JJMAC1 New Member

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    May 29, 2010
    Will post pics of inside in a few weeks after my trip to grand canyon...
     
  18. FC

    FC Central Florida

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    Apopka, Fl
    Sweet. [:D]
     
  19. Tboy

    Tboy New Member

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    Aug 31, 2009
    Squamish B.C.
    Hey JJMac1
    Your rack is great, one of the best I have seen here, couple questions.
    What size superstrut did you use?
    Am I right, did you use rubber gasket under the superstrut then silicone the edges?
    How did you decide where to put the rack, looks like it is towards the back?
    How far apart did you mount the superstrut?
    So far is there anything you would have liked to change?

    Thanks for all the info and for sharing your mod.

    Tboy
     
  20. JJMAC1

    JJMAC1 New Member

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    May 29, 2010
    Tboy,

    The stuts only come in 10 footers. I cut them to width. Something like 6 feet i think. Yes. I put rubber gasket down under the super strut. Then the Superstrut. Bolted it down through the roof connecting to onother superstrut. Then sealed everything with exterior grade silicone. Finally I painted it all with bedliner. Leak proof. Now the roof can hold all sorts of weight as the inner super struts act like beams. Also, you can use eye bolts along the super struts on the inside to hold items/storage racks/shelves, etc....

    I decided to put the rack direcly over the rear axle. We do alot of boondock/dry camping and living in AZ requires lots of water. I was loading the tougue before the rack and it was bringing the back of the tow vehicle down to far for clearance and not riding at the level I wanted. So now, with the rack I can store bikes and water etc in the basket.

    I dont have an exact measurement for you right now on the distance between the superstruts. I basically used my mountain bike and the basket to give me that measurement. As far apart as possible but just enought to mount the basket.

    Change? Just wish I did it earlier. Its a little tricky to line up the super strut on top with the holes in the one under the roof. Thats about it....

    I will post pics of the inside in a couple weeks....
     

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