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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Roof Rack - Over the weekend I installed Ekstrom Design & Fabrication's Latest Roof Rack Design. Many know Ekstrom Design as boardmember Coachbuilder1 for his Shackles and Roof Rack threads. I had specific design considerations to meet with minimizing the overall roof rack height that he has traditionally designed to meet a requirement to keep my truck 3-4 inches under 7' total height. I have to park my truck in an airport garage that has max height of 7' and most of the public garages around where I live have the same max height. I didn't want to end up with parking problems. Coachbuilder exceed expectations and pulled off some of the tightest welds I've seen to redesign this rack.

Now about the rest....

Rigid Industries' SR 10" Driving Light Review - The 4 on the front follow radius of windshield at 20,400 lumen (more than 50" E Series Double Row light bar). I cannot imagine anyone wanting more light and the radius curve is superior to straight/flat front of longer 50" E Series light. They are terribly effective. I estimate when turned on during a dark night visibility increased to almost a mile plus with everything to nearly 1/4 mile being near daylight. With the summer bugs it was like driving on a winter night with light snow flurries. You could see every bug out to 300-400 feet. They have no hot or cold spots. At 100' in front of truck the light tapers off road into fields by road about 400' with full "daytime" visibility. All I can say is awesome.

I wanted something low profile and wasn't really into the lights originally, but Coach and I talked things over and I think adding them certainly added something to the over all design and style. There's nothing out there quite like this rack and lighting setup. We also added a couple lights to the back for when I use boat ramps late at night to load my boat.

A few pictures of truck with rack and lights:









A couple picture of front LED lights on and then just headlights late at night (getting non-blurry night pictures is very difficult without a tripod... not to mention that what the eye sees vs. the SLR sensor are night and day too... pictures don't do the crisp lighting justice):







Switch Review - I installed custom "Contura V" Switches (note: to make room for front/rear LED switches to be side-by-side I moved the NANNY switch from left side of steering wheel to right side by rear window switch). The switches are backlit red nearly identical to Toyota OEM switches. When parking lights go on (similar to rest of dash lighting) the bottom is lit and the top of switch lights up when the LEDs are on. In the following daytime picture it may be hard to tell, but the truck lights are on as well as the LEDs. If you look at the light leveling switch in the following picture you can see the red back lighting in the switches match Contura V Switches for Front/Rear LED lights:



I'm really interested in getting your feedback and I'm sure Coach would like to hear all your "Kudos"! I am extremely pleased with the work he did for me building this roof rack. Coachbuilder is fabulous to collaborate with.
 

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Very nice and more importantly GO 'CUSE!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Go 'cuse. Like your profile pic. The angry Orangeman is mine! LOL
 

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Looks awesome. Toyota should be buying his design and selling them as a part of a package.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I agree. Since Sunday I've been stopped in parking lots 4-6 times and people ask about it. Nobody seems to say anything about the lights. It's like they aren't there although its clear they are.

My previous vehicle was a 12 year old Chevy Avalanche. The factory roofrack spoiled me. I would attach a Yakima rack to it and put 2 kayaks 16' and 18'6" plus 2 bikes up there and travel the country. There is no way I'd just use a rain gutter/door mount roofrack as with windshear and wind resistance from driving would freak me out that it might pull off the truck. Placing the kayaks over the truck is key. I don't want to have kayaks stick off the back which is the only option with a ladder rack which I considered. My kayaks would stick off the back of truck 6-8 feet.

With no factory option and all the cookie cutter/chunky/box/basket options that are ugly out there for permanent mounts it became obvious that Coachbuilder has the only rack worth looking at. The way it flows with the vehicle is awesome. His roof rack build thread having over 91,000 views is a testament that there is interest in roofracks. Taco and Nissans have factory options... Why not Tundra....
 
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
PM Coachbuilder1. That's how I started engaging with him. He is quite responsive.
 
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Looks GREAT!

Can you give a brief synopsis of installation?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Looks GREAT!

Can you give a brief synopsis of installation?
Coachbuilder provides detailed instructions on how to open the headliner by removing the pilar trim, the handles on the roof, etc. About 20 minutes and you have everything open the way you need to so you can drill your mounting holes (standard he has 4 feet, I went with 6 feet, and provides 2 stainless steel bolts, washers, and nuts). Take off the rubber rain gutter stripping on the roof. Drill your holes (put rack in place over blue painter tape to mark holes for drill spots), apply the provided windshield black caulk for weather proofing, remove tape, drop rack on and install bolts through roof, put nuts on, and button up the headliner. 4-5 hour project if you take it slow and don't run into self induced problems.

I am not super hand tool guy and found it straight forward. Pick up a trim removal tool from Harbor freight or where ever and you won't damage the trim. It's not like the clips to secure door panels. There are like 6 bolts to remove and pressure clips that come off.

I hope that was brief enough. Good luck!
 

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Coachbuilder provides detailed instructions on how to open the headliner by removing the pilar trim, the handles on the roof, etc. About 20 minutes and you have everything open the way you need to so you can drill your mounting holes (standard he has 4 feet, I went with 6 feet, and provides 2 stainless steel bolts, washers, and nuts). Take off the rubber rain gutter stripping on the roof. Drill your holes (put rack in place over blue painter tape to mark holes for drill spots), apply the provided windshield black caulk for weather proofing, remove tape, drop rack on and install bolts through roof, put nuts on, and button up the headliner. 4-5 hour project if you take it slow and don't run into self induced problems.

I am not super hand tool guy and found it straight forward. Pick up a trim removal tool from Harbor freight or where ever and you won't damage the trim. It's not like the clips to secure door panels. There are like 6 bolts to remove and pressure clips that come off.

I hope that was brief enough. Good luck!
How about the wiring for the lights? Did you drill a separate hole to feed them through, or was the wiring run through the tubing of one of the "feet"?

I am really thinking hard about doing this mod. I was thinking of doing a light bar over the rear window for an amber beacon. Now I'm thinking one of these racks with some high intensity amber LED signal lights (for plowing and general road emergencies). The rack would be great for adding more long trip storage options too!


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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
How about the wiring for the lights? Did you drill a separate hole to feed them through, or was the wiring run through the tubing of one of the "feet"?

I am really thinking hard about doing this mod. I was thinking of doing a light bar over the rear window for an amber beacon. Now I'm thinking one of these racks with some high intensity amber LED signal lights (for plowing and general road emergencies). The rack would be great for adding more long trip storage options too!


Sent from AutoGuide.com App
The wiring goes through the front drivers side leg. No extra holes. Go with the Rigid Industries SR Series 10" light and you can choose whatever lens you want. and change them if you decide you don't like them. They have covers from clear, yellow, red, blue, smoke, and white & black that light doesn't go through. The covers are the best fit and quality imaginable.

The rack will change your ability to do road trips. I have a yakima rack with Kayak mounts and bike carriers that will clip onto this rack to take things to the next level beyond just storage.
 
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