JL Sliding Roof Rack

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lodoffroad

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I could be entirely wrong Jed but I just don't see swapping tops without removing the sliding basket from the base, and disconnected the rear cross member of the base beforehand, unless you've got a ceiling lift that can take that hard top straight up.

: - )

~~~~~~~~~~

I hope I'm wrong.
Your wrong... :idea:



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msujedi

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I could be entirely wrong Jed but I just don't see swapping tops without removing the sliding basket from the base, and disconnected the rear cross member of the base beforehand, unless you've got a ceiling lift that can take that hard top straight up.

: - )

~~~~~~~~~~

I hope I'm wrong.
I'm holding out hope. :)

It sounded like @lodoffroad said they changed from hard top to soft top with roof rack in tact. It must be possible, but like you're saying, it might not be super simple. I look forward to seeing how they did it ... how many people, what equipment, how much disassembly, etc.
 

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Your wrong... :idea:
I'm thrilled to hear that. Really. I look forward to seeing it in motion.

I am concerned though that my thoughts about binding drawer slides exposed to the elements and weight limits on cantilevering weren't also shot down. I know that some at @lodoffroad have been pushing for the vertical supports to the rack when cantilevered that I spoke of.

Also, I appreciate that the slides themselves may be made out of non-corrosive/rusting metals, but am concerned, if they don't involve sealed ball bearings, that they are a recipe for trouble down the road in that exposure to the elements will seize/bind them. But here again, metal fabrication is your business, and I have to trust that you've considered these points and know what you're doing.

I am not trying to lead people to the competition. I am trying to have you make the best product possible for which I would love to be one of its earliest adopters. : - )

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
 
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I'm thrilled to hear that. Really. I look forward to seeing it in motion.

I am concerned though that my thoughts about binding drawer slides exposed to the elements and weight limits on cantilevering weren't also shot down. I know that some at @lodoffroad have been pushing for the vertical supports to the rack when cantilevered that I spoke of.

Also, I appreciate that the slides themselves may be made out of non-corrosive/rusting metals, but am concerned, if they don't involve sealed ball bearings, that they are a recipe for trouble down the road in that exposure to the elements will seize/bind them. But here again, metal fabrication is your business, and I have to trust that you've considered these points and know what you're doing.

I am not trying to lead people to the competition. I am trying to have you make the best product possible for which I would love to be one of its earliest adopters. : - )

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
As with any product, proper maintenance will be key, and that may change depending on the conditions in which you travel (think rust belt vs desert). Choosing the correct lube and periodic cleaning will go a long way! Slides like these are all rated at a specific open distance, and yes load limit at full extension is reduced. So don't expect to open the rack with 500-800 lbs on it unless you want to kiss the dirt. This rack is designed to be a permanent installation, bolted on, like most exo racks. The purpose of the sliding rack feature is to allow use of the soft top, by simply unlatching and sliding the rack out of the way of the soft top and returning the rack to its closed position. Load limits for cantilever vs driving will take this into consideration. It is not recommended to leave the rack in the open position under load for extended periods without the use of additional support, and is not intended to be used as a personnel platform without rigid support and slide locks.

Although we will not divulge our testing methods, we will make some short periodic videos soon to show "shop" functionality on our prototype rack. These videos will be short and for the most part unedited. I will make sure we capture the hard top removal as soon as we put the soft top back on!
 

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As with any product, proper maintenance will be key,
That is absolutely fair. Slides require lubrication. Lubrication does not last forever, anymore than does, or do we expect it to, engine oil. : - ) A sealed ball bearing unit, if it can even be done here, may not allow your unit to be sold at reasonable price.

I'm already envisioning the design of a long square tube with brush material at one opened end, and for the length closest to the rack, to encapsulate the sliders, like the brushes of this mail slot, to keep out particulate matter when the rack is 99.99% of the time closed. : - )


mailboxbrushes.jpg








As with any product, proper maintenance will be key...…..Choosing the correct lube and periodic cleaning will go a long way!
I'd gladly buy the better/more expensive lube you guys recommend and apply it more aggressively than you indicate. Need I tell you, Wrangler owners generally have no problem sharing the ownership responsibility of a product after purchase with the manufacturer.

Please know that I 110% appreciate the design challenges of making a fully cantileverable rack, which the original JK rack--I say 100% void of any criticism (it was a work of art IMHO) was not. There you were able to "get away" with it as such, as the non-catilevered sections, when the rack was closed, formed the open area above the JK's Freedom Panels. Also, your method of slide there was more like (but not) the "garage door track and wheel like paradigm."

As far as limits when cantilevering the rack are concerned, if you could do 150 pounds fully cantilevered, without vertical supports, my jaw would drop in impressed astonishment. Please know that I, and everyone should have reasonable expectations on such fully cantilevered extension weight limits, especially barring vertical support.

It would be entirely unfair for me/anyone to expect that the laws of physics and cantilevering somehow would not apply to your wares. Again, as my prior posts will show, I am your biggest fan, but as you know, when you make wares for the Wrangler market, those same adoring fans will offer suggestions. It's all part of the process. : - )

To my mind, I'd be fine for the sliding of the rack to be limited to situations where the rack is all but empty.


It is not recommended to leave the rack in the open position under load for extended periods without the use of additional support, and is not intended to be used as a personnel platform without rigid support and slide locks.
Again, entirely fair. Use of the rack as both the storage sight for 400 pounds of your offroading wares for the next 3 weeks, AND at the same time (without unloading said wares first,) as an awning would be an unfair user requirement. I'd hope the rack could hold solely a tarp (I'm sure it could) above to block the sun and serve as an awning in fully cantilevered mode, and again, like you point out, vertical supports when cantilevering under substantial load is only fair.

Apartment building terraces, with similar cantilevered lengths are often designed with protruding welded "I" beams coming out of the building's footprint and are impractical in size and weight for vehicle accessories. Please know that I'm "in your corner here." I have reasonable expectations here that people might very well NOT be able to sit on a fully cantilevered rack and "watch the fire works" like they might have done with the non-fully cantilevered original JK implementation at the expense of less storage capacity under that original rear sliding JK design.

Although we will not divulge our testing methods, we will make some short periodic videos soon to show "shop" functionality on our prototype rack. These videos will be short and for the most part unedited. I will make sure we capture the hard top removal as soon as we put the soft top back on!
I can't wait, except to know that the time you're taking is to get it right the first time. LOD products are built as tough as they come. I am sure you won't let us down with either disappointing or unrealistic weight barring thresholds, open or closed.

All the best!
 

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@lodoffroad , I'm leaning toward getting a Gladiator with a bed rack to transport kayaks and still have the ability to fully use the various top configurations. Your sliding rack is the one reason I'm holding off. The original post said early 2019. I realize things come up, especially with an innovative new product. But, do you have a revised production date? I'm hoping to make a decision by early summer.
 
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@lodoffroad , I'm leaning toward getting a Gladiator with a bed rack to transport kayaks and still have the ability to fully use the various top configurations. Your sliding rack is the one reason I'm holding off. The original post said early 2019. I realize things come up, especially with an innovative new product. But, do you have a revised production date? I'm hoping to make a decision by early summer.
@lodoffroad , I'm leaning toward getting a Gladiator with a bed rack to transport kayaks and still have the ability to fully use the various top configurations. Your sliding rack is the one reason I'm holding off. The original post said early 2019. I realize things come up, especially with an innovative new product. But, do you have a revised production date? I'm hoping to make a decision by early summer.
Hey sorry must have missed this post. Our current target is late July to start taking orders, so hang in there if you haven't jumped ship already!
 

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Looks good. Any drilling required to mount the rack to the back of the Jeep @lodoffroad ?
 
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Looks good. Any drilling required to mount the rack to the back of the Jeep @lodoffroad ?
Yes there is drilling required, however its behind and inside the taillight compartment. At the front there will be drilling required also but is also inside the cowl area. So both areas of drilling are hidden.
 

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Will we be able to remove the hard top through the top using a hoist attached to the ceiling? Also what is the hight from the hard top to the highest point of the rack, looking for garage clearance. Thanks.
 

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Yes there is drilling required, however its behind and inside the taillight compartment. At the front there will be drilling required also but is also inside the cowl area. So both areas of drilling are hidden.
Can you elaborate on the cowl area drilling?

Perhaps it's too early to say, but do you think this drilling will apply to the JL version of the rack as well?

And finally, do you think prices will be the same or similar between JK and JL models, or do you just not know yet because you haven't determined the front method of attachment for the JL yet, etc.?

Thanks.
 

Rahneld

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Hey sorry must have missed this post. Our current target is late July to start taking orders, so hang in there if you haven't jumped ship already!
@msujedi : Jeb. This is, to my understanding, LOD's target date for the JK model.

Your talk of a Gladiator suggests you might alternatively buy a JLU. Maybe not.

In that case, last I heard, and @lodoffroad can confirm this, that July date may be for only the JK version of the rack, with the JL version maybe about a month out from that.
 
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Can you elaborate on the cowl area drilling?

Perhaps it's too early to say, but do you think this drilling will apply to the JL version of the rack as well?

And finally, do you think prices will be the same or similar between JK and JL models, or do you just not know yet because you haven't determined the front method of attachment for the JL yet, etc.?

Thanks.
I expect pricing to be close between the JK and JL but I dont know for sure. Timing wise, both the JK and JL have completed design phase and several complete racks have gone through production build processes and are about ready for coating. Production documentation is almost compete and we'll be starting on instruction sets soon! We are also working through QC process and packaging... So if they're not up for sale at the same time the JL will likely be within a couple weeks at most.

Our prototype JK and JL racks have been removed and both Jeeps are happily awaiting their brand new powder coated racks! We'll post some pictures late next week hopefully. So I cant say for sure what the exact measure is from the Jeep to the top of the rack, but if I recall I previously measured almost 7" tall from the hardtop gutter.

Within the cowl on the JL you will need to drill two holes for a mounting bracket, should be easy and completely hidden once the cowl in reinstalled.
 

                           
























































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