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How-to: LOBO Shelf Mod; New and Improved - Solid, No Rattles - PBR

29940 Views 48 Replies 33 Participants Last post by  Old Navy
I finally got around to doing the Lobo Shelf Mod. I loved having the extra usable Storage Area, but couldn't stand the rattling noise. It drove me nuts, and I took the shelf out the next day. I liked calijetfxr's idea of dipping the Cargo Hooks and the Carabiners in Plastic Dip. I applied three coats of the rubberizer material, but there was still some noise. It wasn't the annoying rattling, but the whole shelf was still swinging back and forth a lot. I knew there had to be a solution. I decided to make the front attaching points stronger to stop the swaying. Here is my own version of the Lobo Mod.

Here is What I Started With:

I got it from Lowes for about $5. It is 14 Gauge 1 inch by 1 inch Steel. A 3 foot long piece is the shortest they had. One foot would have probably been sufficient, if it was available.

I started by cutting the corner out to allow room for the bends. I didn't have the correct tools available at the time, so I made the cuts with Metal Sheers, (Tin Snips).

I used a pair of Pliers to grip the two Tabs and fold them over to create the Mounting Surface.

I drilled a hole in the side of the Bracket, 3.5 inches from the top Mounting Surface. This is the Front Pivot Point for the Shelf. The overall length of the Bracket is just over 4 inches. After I got all the measurements worked out, I repeated the steps for the opposite side:

Here are the Brackets after 3 coats of Duplicolor Flat Grey Primer. It is a close match to the Grey Interior Upholstery Material. I enlarged the Pivot Hole on the side to 3/8 inch to accommodate a 1/4 inch inside diameter Rubber Grommet. I picked up a pair of the Grommets at Lowes for about a Buck. I figured they would eliminate any rattling between the Shelf and my Brackets.

I had to cut out two of the thinner Bars on each side of the Shelf where the Brackets would connect to it.

I trimmed out the corners like most people do for a standard Lobo Mod. Cutting out this section on the ends keeps them from hitting the Rear Window Pillar.

While I was at it, I added a Bracket to make the Maglight very eash to access. I used two 1 inch wide strips of thin Tin, (I think it was intended to be Roof Flashing). It is folded around the Shelf Bars to keep everything tight and stable. As I said earlier, I can't stand Rattling. Here's a shot of the Brackets with and without the Maglight in it. By the way, you can get these Brackets almost anywhere they sell Maglights. The Maglight company actually makes the Brackets, and they're pretty cheap. I bought them a while ago, so I don't remember the store or the actual price.

Here are the Brackets installed onto the Shelf prior to mounting them. I used the original bolts that held the Cargo Hooks in place. I put a large washer between the bolt and the Bracket to make sure there was even pressure holding up the Bracket.

Here are two shots of it installed and hanging open and then hooked in the normal position. It is solid as a Rock! It doesn't move at all! There is not a single Squeak or Rattle from the whole assembly. I love it! Like I said, I can't stand Rattles anywhere, so this is one of my favorite mods so far.

If you already have a Lobo Shelf in your X, I highly recommend this Modification to it. It will cost you about $5 for the Angle Iron, $1 for the Grommets, and $2 for a can of Grey Primer which is of course optional. The whole thing is very quick and easy except for paint drying time. Otherwise, you can probably knock it out in an hour or so.
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Great job! and nice write up too. I am sure many here will like that mod
Nicely done! An update worth doing for sure! MC
Again, Very Nice, Thanks for the many pictures.
That's a hell of a job man!
Digital volcano

I took my lobo down due to the excessive rattling. Any chance you can take a close up of the bracket bolted to the roof?
Sure thing. Here's a close up of the Driver-side Bracket from the Rear:

Here's a slightly further back view of the same Bracket from the same angle:

And here's the same Bracket from the front:

If you want any other views or closeups, just let me know. I used the original bolts that held up the Cargo Hooks to install the Brackets. I put washer in between the bolt head and the Bracket to make sure it was held evenly in place.
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Excellent! Thank you so much.

I can't wait to go out try this mod again. I loved having the space there but hated the way it rattled around all the time.

CMHX - You rock! :headbang:
I've posted a thread with my own version of the Lobo shelf:

When deciding how to do the shelf, I did consider "CMHX"'s idea, and I haven't used my shelf yet, so I don't know if how I did mine will reduce the rattle 'enough'.

One idea I did have is that rather than using the angle iron, use some metric threaded rod to screw into the roof clip holder. Then you would have to attach something to the threaded rod, with a hole in it for the shelf rod.
Nicely done!!!!!!!!!!!!
I cannot, for the life of me, find MagLight mounts like the ones you used.
Save me.
You're right. Those brackets are a lot harder to track down than I would have imagined. I checked the websites for HomeDepot, Lowes, Target, WallyWorld, and nothing. REI doesn't even carry them - go figure. Anyway, I finally found them on Amazon. Here's a link to just the brackets:

And here is a link to a kit that contains the brackets, a few colored lens filters, and an "anti-roll device":
Wow, nice!

Thanks man. Ordering now. That lobo-mount for the maglight is awesome.
I carry a 4 D cell Maglight in the recessed cargo area. I didn't want the extra weight on my LOBO rack as I already have a lot up there. I have a Streamlight Polystinger that I have mounted on the rack. It's small and lightweight. I mounted the charger to the rack by the rear power supply.
CMHX I just did this with a slight twist and it is outright awesome! Totally rock solid with no movement at all. I did the Light Mod too and that makes it even more than worth the effort. Thanks for thinking of this CMHX it is a fantastic addition, and absolutely quiet.

No cutting of the Shelf required. I started new so that helped, if you don't cut it then it fits perfectly. I have no problems cutting the Shelving I've been doing it all day putting this stuff up in my wife's office. Bolt Cutters work well if you do decide to cut it.

On the front used Leigh 5/16" Snap Hooks. I wrapped a couple turns of Electrical Tape at top and bottom of the Hooks, because there is no movement I'm thinking it should hold up. I didn't have any Angle Iron small enough or thin enough to do this so used 1/8" thick 1 inch wide Bar Stock/Mild Steel. Measured up ¾ inch from one end, put it in a Vise and hammered down the extending part to a 90 degree Angle. With the bend the mounting width is close to 1 inch. Cut to 4 inches in length and drilled a 3/8 inch hole 3.5 inches from the top. Your measurements CMHX are spot on and worked perfectly. Into that hole I put a Nylon Snap Bushing with ¼ inch ID, (Home Depot .35 cents). On that end ground a radius on the corners so I didn't cut my head open some night digging around back there. In the top section of the L drilled a slightly oversized hole to mount in the existing overhead Bracket hole.

After trying several dry mounts, I discovered that if you offset the Brackets - one facing in and the other out, it fits perfectly without cutting. You can't tell that the Rack is offset either from the inside or outside.

Don't tighten the screws up all the way when mounting it, then with the front sitting in the Snap Clips pushed forward\down and then tighten the Rear Brackets. The Brackets are perfectly perpendicular to the Shelf and look good. And it doesn't move a bit.
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nice work
Cold Iron, I'm confused. Why do you have this thing laying on your hood???

As far as getting rid of rattles, just use zip ties to attach the clips to the shelf. Wasn't that easy?
awesome job!
jawz101 said:
Cold Iron, I'm confused. Why do you have this thing laying on your hood????
LOL I had used wire ties to mount the lights and wanted something better looking plus allow for the ability to slightly tilt the lamps for better downward cross lighting. I set it on my hood before moving it to my workbench and snapped a picture then.

I fabricated some brackets for the lights using left over 28 ga. stovepipe that I had in the storage shed. They ended up extremely well both in appearance and function. The whole thing looks like it came from the factory that way. Still need to redo the electrical connections though. Replaced the weak light bulbs that came with the lights with 11 watt outdoor bulbs (factory overhead is 8 watt) and it is lit up well back there. The additional lamps added an extra 2 amps on the circuit but appears to be no problem.
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