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Initial test fit done.

Thanks for the info!
 

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2009 Nissan Xterra Offroad
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Initial test fit done.

Thanks for the info!
About to start working on mine. Just noticing that you left out the hitch bar and simply drilled new holes for the two side supports. I think I'm going to go the same route, seeing as the hitch bar seemingly weighs as much as the entire shelf. That should make is much easier to load/unload when needed. Much thanks!
 

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About to start working on mine. Just noticing that you left out the hitch bar and simply drilled new holes for the two side supports. I think I'm going to go the same route, seeing as the hitch bar seemingly weighs as much as the entire shelf. That should make is much easier to load/unload when needed. Much thanks!
No problem! It is definitely easier.

So far so good with the rack. No issues with loosening (I used nylon nuts) and I've put weightier items up there. The only annoyance I have had is a squeaking that I traced back to one of the legs rubbing against the utilitrack. I wedged a thin piece of cardboard and that has silenced it.
 

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So here's where I'm at and what my plans are...

So I've got the shelf assembled. Rather than cutting the excess steel from the hitch connector, and rather than excluding the hitch connector and just bolting the two sides together like Kilo Sierra did, I opted to replace the super heavy hitch thing with a piece of 1" aluminum square tubing. Having something in-between seemed like it might provide more support and/or leverage, so I chose lightweight aluminum, drilled matching holes, painted it with truck bed liner, and I'm just awaiting plastic 1" end caps for it. And rather than drilling two new holes for each side support bar, I used one of the existing holes and then just drilled one new hole on each side.
90716818_202659927681220_9136158409467363328_n.jpg

So I then used the excess metal from the first cargo rack I bought to complete the How-to: Cargo Carrier Converted to Roof Rack and cut them into 21-22" legs to support the shelf. I bought 5" L-angle bars to be able to mount the legs further to the outside to create more room for sleeping inside. And my plan was to use the 4 OEM intellitrack tie downs to secure the L-angles and legs to the intellitrack, that way it's secure and easily removable. So here's basically how it would look.
90219992_2583018488647676_5318967248319152128_n.jpg 90158316_1174946169342816_1417227551415205888_n.jpg

You can see the inside L-angle just barely starts to overlap with the floor so I'll probably shave a couple millimeters off the end so I have no problem opening up the storage compartment, and then drill a new hole in it that lines up with the intellitrack.

I tried to run the tie-downs through the L-angle, but there just isn't enough visible threading to do it properly and securely. Sooo it looks like there is just some excess plastic molding that I'm now going to sand down with a dremmel and see if I have enough threading to make it work.

90142542_596899090907529_5664893775583903744_n.jpg 90116955_151884682717228_6999550172711616512_n.jpg

So that's where I'm at. We'll see it this works out the way I imagine it. If not, then I'll just use normal bolts that won't get in the way and I'll keep the tie downs inside for whenever I need them. But I'm hoping to use the tie-downs, as I don't think they'll be an issue with 2 or 3 inches of foam right over top of them for sleeping.

I am curious how everyone mounting the legs accurately to make sure they line up with the intellitrack properly. I'm no carpenter/engineer so I'm scared that I'll mount all the legs to the shelf and then they won't like up perfectly to be able to get them in the track. Thoughts/advice?
 

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So I successfully took a dremmel and knife to the excess plastic which solved one problem but revealed another. Because the track is recessed about a millimeter or two, twisting the tie-down tight forces the L-bracket to lift, so I'm searching for solutions. Should I try and pre-bend the L-bracket right at that point? Maybe a couple large washers that extend over the track may just as easily solve the problem.

So my question is, do you think the shelf really needs to be locked down super tight? I mean, ultimately, you just need it just tight enough to not move while driving right? Just trying to weight my options and decide what to do next to finish the build.

UPDATE: So I find a couple large washers, and while that does fix the unevenness issues, there's still just not enough threading on those OEM tie-downs to use them for this purpose. I think I just need to go get me some of those channel spring nuts and eye bolts maybe. I don't know.

90342994_543918829564930_6052692325564416000_n.jpg 90313002_221442482557468_4652342415074525184_n.jpg
 

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So I successfully took a dremmel and knife to the excess plastic which solved one problem but revealed another. Because the track is recessed about a millimeter or two, twisting the tie-down tight forces the L-bracket to lift, so I'm searching for solutions. Should I try and pre-bend the L-bracket right at that point? Maybe a couple large washers that extend over the track may just as easily solve the problem.

So my question is, do you think the shelf really needs to be locked down super tight? I mean, ultimately, you just need it just tight enough to not move while driving right? Just trying to weight my options and decide what to do next to finish the build.

UPDATE: So I find a couple large washers, and while that does fix the unevenness issues, there's still just not enough threading on those OEM tie-downs to use them for this purpose. I think I just need to go get me some of those channel spring nuts and eye bolts maybe. I don't know.

View attachment 126166 View attachment 126167
I am doing a whole drawer system and since my rig was used I did not have the OEM tie downs, here is what I am using, relatively inexpensive as well, just some star knobs and washers
126202
 

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I am doing a whole drawer system and since my rig was used I did not have the OEM tie downs, here is what I am using, relatively inexpensive as well, just some star knobs and washers View attachment 126202
Nice, I like that. Luckily, I realized that the bottoms of the tie-downs can be flipped upside-down and that allowed for more threading which solved all my problems. So OEM tie-downs right into the L-bracket with a 1 1/4" washer underneath to help level out the track with the L-bracket. And I can now easily tighten/loosen them by hand. Just painted all the legs and hoping to mount to the shelf and get it installed later today.
 

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2009 Nissan Xterra Offroad
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Shelf complete! Thanks for all the input and the original how-to. Was able to easily install by myself once the legs were securely mounted to the shelf. Factory tie downs worked out perfectly, and if I'm sleeping in there, I can always temporarily remove the tie down(s) closest to the front if I happen to feel them through the foam/sleeping pad. Basically needs to be on the track at the furthest position toward the rear to allow the backseats to be up with headrests on. It's perfect and I'm loving it! And waaaay cheaper than any of the manufactured options out there.

91076846_1258631677655906_4325224524556533760_n.jpg 90589858_676234619594564_8692555164726329344_n.jpg
 

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Nice work, looks good and practical

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