First off many thanks to Tad for fabbing up some brackets for my 88 Grand Wagoneer. I finally got around to putting them on and am very pleased with the fitment and function of them for use with my OEM stock mounted roof rack.
I like many other Grand Wagoneer owners had a leaking roof due to the OEM vanity roof rack being pulled thru the roof due to poor engineering of JEEP using those crappy rubber well nuts. What were they thinking!!!!
Tak a look at what happened in the below picture:
This is the problem area, and if your wag has even just a little bit of age and use, you can bet yours are at least leaking. Wonder why so many jeeps are rusted out in the floors and rear rockers? Is your headliner sagging? You probably don't realize it but you are roof rack well nuts are stressed or ripped and leaking! Just grab a hold of the roof rack bracket, I bet it is loose. Don't tighten it, the well nut will just pull the rest of way through! Only solution is to drop the headliner, beg tad to make you some brackets and seal it up right and be done with it. Oh and then repair your headliner which is probably already sagging.
Anyway here is what you get when you order your brackets from Tad (tadsal on this board).
Save your old roof rack screws (torx head). Tad's done the home work and welded the 1/4-20 bolt to his brackets in the proper orientation. The stock screws are plenty long enough to fit.
You'll need a nut driver socket like shown in the picture and a drill to drive the new sheet metal screws that tad supplies with the brackets.
Note: Probably not necessary, but I primed my brackets, mostly to make better pictures, but also to keep them from rusting if it leaks again, which I don't think it will!
Easy install after the headliner is out, I used clear caulking on the underside of the roof between bracket, and then again on top before I sandwiched in the rubber foot that was already there with the oem roof rack leg. I also coated the threads with a nice dose of caulk and then buttoned things down till it felt secure. Final step was filling the top screw hole with a lil caulk just for added measure. These aren't going to leak now, and the fit was perfect and very secure.
See installed pictures:
Lets face it, the stock rack isn't meant for heavy storage, probably more for appearance. Tad actually makes a real rack if you want to tie a dear or your Aunt Edna up top using these same brackets (with a differently sized welded nut on them) regardless, you can be confident whatever rack you have it isn't going anywhere.
In summation, I am very pleased with the brackets and fitment as well as new found utility of the oem roof rack. I'd suggest doing a dry run like I did without caulk sealing in order to line everything up first and then follow by driving the sheet metal screws into the inside rail to avoid mistakes! My installation was flawless!
Thanks again tad for your help and sorry it took me so long to get these on. As you can see I never did get the exterior roof painted (which I was using as an excuse to delay the install). Believe it or not my better half actually thinks I should wait and just get the entire jeep painted so everything matches perfectly. She's cool like that! So in the meantime, I've installed the brackets until that day comes.
[ January 24, 2006, 09:27 AM: Message edited by: Jeepeta ]