Roof Rack Modifications - Canoe, long box, 2 boxes? - 2017+ Chrysler Pacifica Minivan Forums
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 01-06-2018, 09:35 AM Thread Starter
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Roof Rack Modifications - Canoe, long box, 2 boxes?

Search for canoe/long box options came up empty. Had a Thule rack (narrow and wide bars) on my old minivan & seem to have two problems with the new PacHy roof rack.

1. There is only 1 front location and 2 back locations for the cross bars to be installed. They would work great for short roof boxes, but for my long Yakima Box (ski/snowboards), they are too close together, so the box is wobbly. The box is much more stable, the closer the rack bars are to the ends of the box. This problem is even worse with a canoe (16 or 17.5') on the top. It seems odd to me in that all it would have taken for Chrysler would have been a few more sets of threaded locations in the roof rails to have a lot more options for installing the cross bars - very short sighted in my opinion. Has anyone figured out how to mount the cross bars with more distance between them? I don't want to drill into my roof, but could you drill & tap into the roof rails themselves? Anyone seen what the roof rails look like from the underside before they get mounted and where the mounting points are?

2. The cross bars aren't very wide, so 2 boxes or a box & a canoe are out of the question. Has anyone found a solution for mounting wider cross bars? I note that the Thule site does not list any options for mounting Thule cross bars (which I already have narrow and wide sets.) I'm thinking of trying to find some used cross bars from a scrapper (it looks like any bars from a similar Dodge product would work), cut the mount points off, and bolt them to my wide Thule Bars.

It seems I need some Thule Mount points for "square" bars that attach to the far front & rear of the rails.

Suggestions?

Tim
2018 Pacifica Hybrid

Last edited by tturkstra; 01-06-2018 at 09:45 AM.
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-05-2019, 01:58 PM
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Seem's like this is a quiet topic. I'm trying to install my box today and ran into similar challenges. Of course it's spitting rain & sleet today. I'll add some findings and hopefully follow back up with some pics.

Pacifica crossrail positions are 27" and 40" depending on what rear bar placement you choose. Unfortunately my older Yakima Rocketbox 11 is a 30"-36" adjustment range. It looks like there is some simple reengineering to extend the clamp tracks. 27" is just too narrow, so I'm going to go for the 40" position. My plan is to drill a hole. If I don't get it quite right I will enlarge to the slot area with the dremel which will allow a fore/aft adjustment range.

I can't fathom why Chrysler has picked a 27" spacing other than they do not want any on roof stowage. The manual says always use crossbars. 40" Is a bit long for the fork mount bike rack the rear wheel track is right at the mount which is less than ideal.

Now all this is about the mount length. I feel like 40" should suffice for boats if you use a bow/stern tie down, which is always a smart idea. The question is what to tie to. I've only had the van a few days.

Width wise, did you ever come up with a solution, I'm thinking aftermarket cross bars which extend beyond the width of the current rack are needed. Etrailer.com is always good about configurations. You may reach out to them. On past racks I'd usually straddle the rail or foot and get at least one mount further outboard. I've got some more playing, but my goal is the narrow Rocketbox and 2 bike racks. If I'm successful, I'm not sure I'll add the hitch, but it sure is nice to have the bikes off the back vs. on the roof!

UPDATE: I measured it out and drilled a single hole behind the rear slide slot for the mount bolt on the Rocketbox. Mounted up perfect, the only downside is there is a tiny portion of the slot at the front of the track that now is open. A piece of duct tape over it will solve any water ingress.

Last edited by widget; 04-05-2019 at 04:40 PM.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-05-2019, 02:04 PM
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From another thread, these would get you wider, but don't solve the fore aft challenge. Have a look at Thule Ride on Adaptors. Cant post the link because I'm still the new guy.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-05-2019, 02:28 PM
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I do have been dismayed at the lack of options from Yakima, Thule for years. There's no great options for a rack, short of drilling in to the roof and doing a custom job. The issue here goes beyond just spacing of the cross bars, as the underlying issue is really weight, which the Pacifica's anemic rack load makes everything aside from just having a rack or box about impossible (you can have, but can't use due to weight!)

2017 Pacifica Touring L (gas) w/tow. April 2016 build.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-05-2019, 03:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catboy View Post
I do have been dismayed at the lack of options from Yakima, Thule for years. There's no great options for a rack, short of drilling in to the roof and doing a custom job. The issue here goes beyond just spacing of the cross bars, as the underlying issue is really weight, which the Pacifica's anemic rack load makes everything aside from just having a rack or box about impossible (you can have, but can't use due to weight!)
As far as I know the factory bars have a load capacity of 150lb. The bars on the Chrysler T&C I had prior to the Pacifica had the same roof load limit. The Pacifica factory bars do look a bit skinny, though...
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