Install question: Rhino rack backbone (RJLB1) an pioneer platform rack (52108F) installed using RCL6 legs

Kats

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Hello everyone,
I am trying to install the rhino rack platform on the backbone system using RCL6 (low profile legs).
I found that the backbone system comes with 6 small bolts
1635213299655.png
that need to be used to connect the legs to the backbone. Since, they look bit too small, I called rhino rack they sent another hardware kit ( https://assets.rhinorack.com/Instructions/Parts/Spacers/SUB0800.pdf) that has slightly longer bolts
1635213464803.png
.

Not sure, which ones i should be using ??

Also, in the instructions in the PDF says "locator tabs on the legs need to removed before install". But all the install videos i have seen on youtube has no mention about this removing the tabs. I do see that the backbone castings do have cutouts that would hold these tabs, and I thought that these inserted into the cutouts might provide extra stability/support for the legs.

I am confused :(

Could someone who has installed this setup recently chime in here?

Thanks in advance.
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Kats

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Hello everyone,
I am trying to install the rhino rack platform on the backbone system using RCL6 (low profile legs).
I found that the backbone system comes with 6 small bolts
1635213299655.png
that need to be used to connect the legs to the backbone. Since, they look bit too small, I called rhino rack they sent another hardware kit ( https://assets.rhinorack.com/Instructions/Parts/Spacers/SUB0800.pdf) that has slightly longer bolts
1635213464803.png
.

Not sure, which ones i should be using ??

Also, in the instructions in the PDF says "locator tabs on the legs need to removed before install". But all the install videos i have seen on youtube has no mention about this removing the tabs. I do see that the backbone castings do have cutouts that would hold these tabs, and I thought that these inserted into the cutouts might provide extra stability/support for the legs.

I am confused :(

Could someone who has installed this setup recently chime in here?

Thanks in advance.
 
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Kats

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@Jeeperz Kreeperz I understand you have got the similar setup on your 4xe. Could you please provide your tips/experience here? Thanks
 

Jeeperz Kreeperz

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I understand you have got the similar setup on your 4xe. Could you please provide your tips/experience here? Thanks
@Kats , Yes, I installed the RCL legs on the backbone system of our 4xe a few months ago. I simply used the hardware that came with the kit. I did not have any longer bolts as you do. The bolts in the kit, while smaller in diameter than I had hoped they would be, were certainly long enough to catch the threaded nut inserts in the base pieces. Pro tip: I super glued those 6 nuts into the bases (not the bolt into the nut, just the nut into the base), as I had heard stories of them coming loose, and they are tough to reseat after the system is already installed. And I did NOT break off any tabs. Are you sure you’re looking at the JL kit? One of the links above takes me to a kit for a JK.

Those tabs fit perfectly into the base as you mentioned. And I agree, those tabs likely help prevent any side-to-side and front-to-back movement. This means the 6 small bolts don’t have to do much in terms of preventing cross-sectional torsion (is that even a phrase?). They just secure the rack to the 6 base pieces. Gravity, and the weight of stuff on your rack, should keep forces pushing down. The tabs prevent the sideways forces. As for ‘upward forces’, there shouldn’t be much. Although, I certainly wouldn’t want to try to pick up my Jeep using the roof rack like they did in this video:
Send me a DM if you want to discuss, and I’ll have time after work to call you if you need any other tips.
 

j2dadventures

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Hi Kat,

We never remove the locator tabs on the legs before installing and the legs went on the install just fine.

We have a JL and we got the 6 RCH Locking Legs for our install, and recently changed the legs to their Quick Mount Legs for easily removing the Pioneer Platform from our roof. So I am not sure if there is a difference in RCL and RCH legs.

Our RCL leg instruction did not mention removal of tabs at all. Neither did the new Quick Mount Legs.
https://assets.rhinorack.com/Instructions/Parts/Legs/RCL-RCH.pdf

My gut says just ignore the tab removal step. You can always remove it later if they end up being in the way.
 
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Kats

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Hi Kat,

We never remove the locator tabs on the legs before installing and the legs went on the install just fine.

We have a JL and we got the 6 RCH Locking Legs for our install, and recently changed the legs to their Quick Mount Legs for easily removing the Pioneer Platform from our roof. So I am not sure if there is a difference in RCL and RCH legs.

Our RCL leg instruction did not mention removal of tabs at all. Neither did the new Quick Mount Legs.
https://assets.rhinorack.com/Instructions/Parts/Legs/RCL-RCH.pdf

My gut says just ignore the tab removal step. You can always remove it later if they end up being in the way.
Thank you for your response @j2dadventures. My original instructions did not say that but then the Rhino Rack support sent me a set of 6 20mm M6 bolts and in that they included the instruction sheet that has this step to remove the tabs. I think I am going to leave the tabs intact.
 
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Kats

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@Kats , Yes, I installed the RCL legs on the backbone system of our 4xe a few months ago. I simply used the hardware that came with the kit. I did not have any longer bolts as you do. The bolts in the kit, while smaller in diameter than I had hoped they would be, were certainly long enough to catch the threaded nut inserts in the base pieces. Pro tip: I super glued those 6 nuts into the bases (not the bolt into the nut, just the nut into the base), as I had heard stories of them coming loose, and they are tough to reseat after the system is already installed. And I did NOT break off any tabs. Are you sure you’re looking at the JL kit? One of the links above takes me to a kit for a JK.

Those tabs fit perfectly into the base as you mentioned. And I agree, those tabs likely help prevent any side-to-side and front-to-back movement. This means the 6 small bolts don’t have to do much in terms of preventing cross-sectional torsion (is that even a phrase?). They just secure the rack to the 6 base pieces. Gravity, and the weight of stuff on your rack, should keep forces pushing down. The tabs prevent the sideways forces. As for ‘upward forces’, there shouldn’t be much. Although, I certainly wouldn’t want to try to pick up my Jeep using the roof rack like they did in this video:
Send me a DM if you want to discuss, and I’ll have time after work to call you if you need any other tips.
Thanks for the quick response @Jeeperz Kreeperz !
The kit I got is for JLU only. But when i contacted the RR support to clarify about the 'small bolt" size, they did say that I got use 20mm hex bolts and send them for free along with the instructions that said to remove the tabs!! Anyways, I agree leaving the tab would only help retaining the leg from moving sideways.
I will send you DM about the 'super glueing' the nut insert part, as i dont see anything like that in my castings as they seem to have the thread inside of it already!!
 

Jeeperz Kreeperz

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I will send you DM about the 'super glueing' the nut insert part, as i dont see anything like that in my castings as they seem to have the thread inside of it already!!
Based on your comments, I’m beginning to wonder if maybe RR made some changes/improvements to the kit since I bought mine roughly 6-months ago. Here’s a pic I snapped of me gluing in the threaded nuts to the castings:

28DB3459-78C4-4239-B06D-8861449AB8E0.jpeg


That nut in the center is sort of press-fitted into a hex-shaped hole in the casting. But I had one of them pop out just handling the castings before the install, and I’ve read of others having them shake loose on the trails. I think it was Brad from Trail Recon discussed this in a YouTube review of the roof rack as well. So, I figured a little super glue couldn’t hurt.

The rest of the kit - backbone, RCL legs, and pioneer platform - were all of exceptional quality. The engineering that went into the backbone, and the packaging - yes packaging - of the backbone system was the most impressive I have ever seen (See pics below):
4570186B-94FD-46CB-AC4E-090C6D6675F9.jpeg


16C1E710-C5F4-48AB-8821-1E7662E838A4.jpeg


The engineer who designed the backbone system was a fan of having one item perform multiple tasks (e.g., the brackets that tie the upper parts of the internal backbone together double as horizontal spacers for positioning the castings; and the multi tool included in the kit uses the one side for vertical spacing of one casting, and another side to vertically space the other casting, etc.). It’s perfectly designed, and looks great as well.

And the improvements to the pioneer platform were really nice too (ruler-like markings on the bottom, channels for running wires, included torque wrench, new slots on front/back, improved aesthetics, etc.). Some engineer at RR deserves a raise!
 
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Kats

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Based on your comments, I’m beginning to wonder if maybe RR made some changes/improvements to the kit since I bought mine roughly 6-months ago. Here’s a pic I snapped of me gluing in the threaded nuts to the castings:

28DB3459-78C4-4239-B06D-8861449AB8E0.jpeg


That nut in the center is sort of press-fitted into a hex-shaped hole in the casting. But I had one of them pop out just handling the castings before the install, and I’ve read of others having them shake loose on the trails. I think it was Brad from Trail Recon discussed this in a YouTube review of the roof rack as well. So, I figured a little super glue couldn’t hurt. And just to clarify, the castings came with those nuts already inserted - they were not part of the hardware package that I had to install on my own.

The rest of the kit - backbone, RCL legs, and pioneer platform - were all of exceptional quality. The engineering that went into the backbone, and the packaging - yes packaging - of the backbone system was the most impressive I have ever seen. And the improvements to the pioneer platform were really nice too (ruler-like markings on the bottom, channels for running wires, included torque wrench, new slots on front/back, improved aesthetics, etc.). Some engineer at RR deserves a raise!
Thanks @Jeeperz Kreeperz for the explanation with the picture. It is clear now. In my case, i dont think the installer would have done this step for me. So I am going to hope that it doesn't get loose/rattle anytime soon.

Btw, did we have to drill a little bit on the hardtop below this hole so the bolt can screw all the way in with legs mounted ? My installer seem to have done bit of drilling and as i said it was half aligned with thread hole and when I dryfit the screw it was not going in as much as other other end casters.
have attached pics of the bolts and middle casting hole fyi.

IMG_5685.JPG


IMG_5688.JPG


IMG_5689.JPG


IMG_5691.JPG


IMG_5692.JPG
 

Jeeperz Kreeperz

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Btw, did we have to drill a little bit on the hardtop below this hole so the bolt can screw all the way in with legs mounted ? My installer seem to have done bit of drilling and as i said it was half aligned with thread hole and when I dryfit the screw it was not going in as much as other other end casters.
Not sure I fully understand the question. However, I seem to recall that for the front casting, it required drilling holes through multiple layers. It was all perfectly explained in this install video:

You’ll note that video has more than 39,000 views on YouTube. I believe I’m personally responsible for roughly 15,000 of those views during my own installation 😬

The only time I wandered away from the video’s instructions was in the drilling of the large holes for the front castings. I tried one with a brand new drill bit of the correct size, and it bit into the fiberglass enough to open up the hole larger than it should have (even using 2 layers of masking tape). I then switched to a unibit/step drill bit (see pic below), and that seemed to work better for me on the fiberglass:
B9F13F3F-E00C-4E12-98B9-1705BAC6380B.jpeg
 
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Kats

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Not sure I fully understand the question. However, I seem to recall that for the front casting, it required drilling holes through multiple layers. It was all perfectly explained in this install video:

You’ll note that video has more than 39,000 views on YouTube. I believe I’m personally responsible for roughly 15,000 of those views during my own installation 😬
Yes, the video link you have shared is what i have given to my installer, so hopefully he followed exactly. My doubt was whether there has to be any drilling on the hard top from the top for the middle castings, to have the bolt screw fully. If not, the I have to check with my installer whether there was any halfway drilled hole and needs to be concerned about any water leak etc.. I think once the leg is mounted and locked there shouldn't be any possibility of water getting through that hole anyways. Just want to confirm before i mount the platform next.
 
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Kats

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@Jeeperz Kreeperz And btw, about the bolts i have attached the image of both, the one with blue loctight is from the original backbone package, is that what you have also used to mount the RCL legs? The longer ones are the ones sent to me by RR support but not sure they can screw in all the way to the front and middle castings as they slightly shorter the the back casting.
 

Jeeperz Kreeperz

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@Jeeperz Kreeperz And btw, about the bolts i have attached the image of both, the one with blue loctight is from the original backbone package, is that what you have also used to mount the RCL legs? The longer ones are the ones sent to me by RR support but not sure they can screw in all the way to the front and middle castings as they slightly shorter the the back casting.
I didn’t measure the bolts in my kit. However, the 6 actual bolts that I used are shown in the photo below. Not sure of the length, but they look pretty short:
2BCDCD85-51EF-42DF-A2FC-F6C721FEE1D6.jpeg
 
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