Thursday, November 29, 2007

Rack Rabbit

I left the house for work with the following items: battery powered circular saw and drill, brown bag of 3" decking screws, square, tape measure.

With the van down, we've had to have our building materials delivered: lumber, insulation, drywall, beadboard; three or four times now. It adds up, and we fully expect there to be more.

So, on my lunch hour yesterday, I sped up to the big box with plans to build a guerrilla roof rack for the GTI. Nothing fancy, just enough to be able to transport 4x8 sheets of ceiling material home when we need to.

I purchased some 2x4s and a couple of come-alongs and laid them out in the parking lot. Using the circular saw, I cut three pieces at 4'3" to function as cross members, and I used two 8' sticks for the front-to-back runners. People walked past. I spaced the runners so that they'd fall along the roof corners (most rigid part) and laid the cross members over them and squared it all up. Screwed in two screws per joint.

Placed it atop the Rabbit. Ratcheted it down with two come-alongs. Drove back to work.

The front strap vibrated in the wind and made a very loud reedy buzz. I was able to quiet it down a bit, but it's a pretty noisy roof rack. That's okay, it's a pretty noisy car.

Later, we stopped to pick up our next order of beadboard and carefully loaded it onto the roof, tied it down.

Success! It really worked great, nothing shifted. So now we can use the Rabbit to bring home lumber for a while. Cool.

- John

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