When it was time to replace my shabby old cargo carrier, I wasn't really impressed with what I was finding. Cargo boxes didn't seem to have changed all that much. They were still made of the same flimsy plastic that was difficult to open and close. Most of them had oddly shaped bottoms that were awkward to load, only a few offered tie-downs, and the color choice was With the exception of a few minor changes, these were essentially the same boxes from 25 years ago.
That first box was a little crude, but showed me the possibilities. I added a cork liner to pamper my cargo, and to keep it from sliding around. Closing was made easier and more secure with a shock cord hold down system. I've even designed drop in racks for skis and fishing poles! They don't make any noise, they're easy load, and most importantly everything arrives clean and dry. They've also been a hit with others, as well.
So for all of my fellow free-thinkers, makers, DIYers, eco-warriors, soccer moms or dads, dirtbaggers, week-end warriors, fishing bums, or anyone else who is looking to break out of the plastic mold, these are for you. Then they are shocked at how light they actually are. The shot above shows the weight of our largest model.
It clocks in at about 45 or 46 pounds. The same size plastic boxes range from 46 to 57 pounds. A fiberglass model of the same size is a whopping 93 pounds! They may be light, but they are not flimsy. The wood frame is stiff so there is no awkward twisting or flopping of the lid when you go to close it. These cargo boxes are tough. We use the materials, the adhesives, and building techniques that are used to build wooden kayaks and boats, surfboards, airplane frames, and even high performance racing bicycles.
The frames are assembled with thickened epoxy, and stainless steel screws. The panels are also installed with thickened epoxy, and all joints are then further strengthened with an epoxy fillet. If you want extra protection, go ahead, add that extra layer of glass. Maybe to the inside of the lid this time. The final finish, whether it's paint or varnish, adds yet another layer of protection from moisture and UV degredation. It's wood, and it's renewable. But there are some things we can do to bump up its' eco-cred a notch.
Each of our roof boxes was designed with three goals in mind: They had to be spacious, they also had to be efficient with standard sized materials so there was little waste, and they had to be aerodynamic so they wouldn't be a drag on your mpg.
Don't stop there!Roof Rack kits are way overpriced. The companies who make them gouge your wallet by selling everything separately and for much more than they need to be. So when my wife and I had our first child boy, 6 lbs 5 oz. This worked beautifully, as all wind noise caused by wind running through the crossbars was eliminated. Fortunately, I found a suitable container at work. It was a used Abex pop-up exhibit travel case which was somewhat aerodynamic and made of durable plastic since it was made for shipping and travel.
I was pretty impressed that the U-bolts fit the yakima crossbars perfectly and snugly. I then marked the centerpoint of those holes onto the cargo box and drilled four holes into the cargo box. These four holes would allow me to run the bolts through from the inside of the cargo box through the tubes, and allow them to be securely attached.
All four bolts and stop-nuts installed through and secured. Bolt, fender washer, and nut installed added electrical nut to protect car paint in case it hits top of car. Top of bolt and large fender washer inside cargo box. After the installation of the bolts, the cargo box needed to be weatherproofed a little. After that, the cargo box was finished! Cargo box mounted on yakima roof rack notice the nylon bungee cord wrapped around the crossbar.
I doubt it needs to be there with the box mounted since the box would stop the wind from whooshing over the bars. I was just too lazy to remove them. The four bolts with large fender washers securely hold the box to the aluminum bars. While I certainly agree that the rack systems are ridiculous… So is strapping an oil drum looking thing to the top of your car.
True, this thing is pretty ugly. However, the dimensions of the box is about the same as the yakima factory boxes, it just doesnt have that nice front sloping curve. Its only about 15 inches in height so the aerodynamics of it are not too bad. The rack can hold lbs of weight, i probably put lbs max in the box, so safety isnt much of a concern.
Creative, the square design strikes me as odd. Something I personally would have never thought of. Thanks for being the pioneer. Its great that you only loose mpg, with air dynamics working against your construction a larger drop in mpg seems much more likely, having this thought was what really kept me thinking I had to have some egg shape container on top. I would just make an air deflector for it and you may get your mpg back; it may be better than it was to begin with.
Hey, I am not going to be one of the people that are criticizing you over this, since when you have a family, you do what you have to do! I lose about 4mpg with it on the roof going 75 on the freeway but need the space.Materials for building your own trailer hitch cargo carrier should cost about 75 percent of buying one ready-made, so you will be trading time for savings.
Having the satisfaction of building it counts, and you can do some customizing as you go. The basic materials are available on the Internet, and construction does not require welding equipment. The design will fit a two-inch hitch receiver and lock pin. Carrying capacity is around pounds. Lay down the inch angle in parallel about 20 inches apart, with flats pointing toward each other.
Lay the inch end pieces with their ends inside and at a right-angle to both long pieces so they form a rectangle. Lay remaining inch pieces the same way, 20 inches from each end of the rectangle.
Pencil-mark all positions. Use the drill press to make holes through both layers of angle iron. Use a construction square to set right angles and clamp angle iron in place on the press table.
Drill holes in a 1-inch square pattern at the center of each 2-inch overlap. Temporarily bolt the rectangle together. Attach the remaining inch angle iron 20 inches in from the ends upside-down from underneath, so mesh will lie flat inside the frame. Center the square tube between the rectangle ends, protruding 4 inches at the hitch side, flush with the other side.
Clamp all parts onto the drill press table and drill a 4-bolt-hole in a square pattern through the angle iron and the tube on both sides. Temporarily bolt the tube to the frame with long bolts. Turn the assembly upside-down. Center a flat bar over the tube at each long side of the rectangle. Bend the bar down on both ends to touch the angle iron, and lip-bend the bar back 2 inches from the ends so that it will bolt down flat.When the entire family wants to vacation and there's only the sedan to make the trip, where do we put all the luggage?
Well, there's no one on the car roof so let's put it up there! A rooftop carrier is a great way to carry along additional suitcases, boxed up Christmas presents or that cumbersome purchase from the big-box store. Building a rooftop carrier will not only save money but also result in a platform fitted precisely to your car or van. Wood or metal? Decide what to use to assemble the carrier.
Metal is strong and durable but might be more demanding to work and shape in a home workshop. Wood is lightweight and easily cut and fastened together but can wither quickly over time in the weather. Sticking with wood, however, allows readily available hand tools to do the job.
When the carrier is assembled, heavy coats of wood paint primer and a sturdy urethane wood deck paint will go a long way toward protecting the carrier from the elements. The entire carrier will be fashioned from 2-inch by 2-inch square rails.
Although pine lumber is inexpensive and abundant, consider using a harder wood such as oak for a quality project. Also needed are five rubber suction-cup feet large enough to fit on each wooden leg. These are available at most home supply stores in the hardware section. Finally, from an auto supply store, buy two adjustable nylon straps to secure the carrier to the car roof. Using the wood rails, fashion a wide ladder design with each "step" 8 to 10 inches apart.
Fasten each rail to three perpendicular rails to act as side frames and a center support. Lay the rail step on top of the side pieces and connect with 3-inch deck screws. At each corner attach a 5-inch "leg" and also one in the middle of the middle support, for a total of five legs. Attach a large suction cup to each leg. A good adhesive to secure the suction "feet" is Dap Weldwood glue. A contact glue, it will secure rubber to wood easily and quickly.
Place the carrier on top of the car. Just like a toy bow and arrow, moisten the suction cups for a good seal. Use the nylon strapping to further secure the carrier by hooking to the recesses above each car door window. If an enclosed car carrier is needed, use the ladder frame as the "floor" and add vertical joists to inches high depending on the size you need and then wall with either plywood or aluminum sheeting available from a building supply dealer.
Remember, however, to angle the leading wall of the carrier for better aerodynamics when the car is on the road. Attach the top with hinges on the front edge to provide access to the car carrier. This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information.
To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Runs, contact us. Installation Place the carrier on top of the car.
Enclosure If an enclosed car carrier is needed, use the ladder frame as the "floor" and add vertical joists to inches high depending on the size you need and then wall with either plywood or aluminum sheeting available from a building supply dealer.
DIY Roof Rack Cargo Box for any car rack system (yakima, thule)
References Piggy pack: Classic car top carrier loading instructions Piggy pack; Car top carrier strapRight system. About the Author This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. Photo Credits luggage in hotel room image by Albert Lozano from Fotolia.It's just a hollow hinged plastic box, made to be a little aerodynamic and strapped to an existing luggage rack.
I find it hard to believe that a home made version couldn't be created as sturdy if not sturdier, hold more and last longer. I was thinking maybe pvc, conduit, or even wood framed. Just curious. Thanks in advance for any helpful input. OK, I just did build a box for the top of our Toyota Sienna van.
Is about 3' x 3' x 12" and quite aerodynamic too. Reply 8 months ago. Reply 1 year ago. Would you mind sending me the details of your build also?
How to Build a Trailer Hitch Cargo Carrier
I am looking at making my own rooftop carrier for my Subaru Crosstrek! Thank you! I got into XC skiing this year and have been putting the skis in the Jeep with me so far. Kinda stinks when the melting snow falls off onto my arm while I'm trying to drive. Also seems like they would be deadly the way the end is up near my head in the event of certain types of accidents. Been brainstorming a PVC pipe "box" for each ski that will attach to my old school Con-ferr roof rack.
I'm thinking a glue capped 3in.DIY Cargo Carrier For Your RV / Travel Trailer / Fifth Wheel
Answer 7 years ago. I'm also looking for information about this, surprised I can't find any examples. I've already got a factory-installed roof-rack which gives me secure mounting points, so wondering why I can't just build something simple myself. For sake of argument say a large box in the range of 6'x3'x1.
That would be about 63sqft of sheeting material. Maybe double the weight of a commercial version? Hard to believe I couldn't secure that safely to my roofrack for hwy speeds?
Are there really laws about what you're allowed on the roof of your car? I see lots of crazy stuff people have tied up there which looks completely unsafe but never see anyone pulled over for it.
Its the Department of Transportation versus the police that you have to worry about, but even with them it depends on who you get. If your build looks professional which can be easy enough to doyou can get away with not having to buy a commercially made container; but if you leave it more on the "rustic" side, you can easily get pulled over for an inspection which can either be a time waster, or a ticket if they deem it unsafe. That being said, I think its more than possible to make something, especially since you have the mounting brackets.
Obviously you want to make sure the load doesn't get top heavy for your vehicle, and so if the items are more lightweight but bulky, you could do this a few ways.
The way I would make the cargo box is with fiberglass. Its strong and lightweight, easy enough to work with and fairly inexpensive. You simply buy the fiberglass sheets and resin, and like making paper mache, you cover a mold until you have the shape and its set.Since you sell a funnel-service I suppose you also test your own site and made it this way by a reason.
If you want to avoid the pop-up, something that helped us (kickofflabs.
DIY Build Your Own Roof Top Carrier
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Georges FallahThanks Cameron, nice article. Pop up windows gets you a negative remarks sometimes. A slider at the bottom of the page is much better, in my view.
Thanks for the info. For running an online business successfully, the sign-up rate is an important factor. It defines the number of the user registering to your website.
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When our computers start slowing down or behaving in an unusual way, we are often quick to suspect that we have a virus.
It might not be a virus, but it is likely that you have some sort of malware. Some are malicious, and others are just annoying. The worst culprits are the hijackersmalware programs that take over your browser, or worse yet, your computer. Here are 10 tips on how to prevent malware from infecting your computer, keeping your hardware safe. This tip may go without saying, and I almost just casually mentioned it in my opening paragraph.
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Welcome to Flyboxx cargo carriers
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