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2019 Transit 350 Quigley 4x4, 130" MR 3.5 eco
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I see a lot of modular DIY aluminum roof racks out there that bolt together... but has anyone bent and welded aluminum tube for a rack or bumper? It's been quite an experience!

Fabricated this flat rack for my 130 WB, MR Quigley. Primary purpose is carrying boards and occasionally jerry cans and maxtrax. The hoop, crossbars and legs are all 1.25 OD aluminum tube, 1/8 wall. Floor is 1/16 aluminum sheet with 3/8 perforations. Overall dimensions are approximately 96" x 69". The base of the feet are 3/8th aluminum plate with stainless 8mm x 1.25 hardware bolted into the factory threaded mounting points. Hand cut rubber gasket backing.

Bent the tube using a hydraulic tube bender, welded with Hobart MVP 210 MIG with pure argon gas and 5356 alloy .035" aluminum welding wire. Cuts and notching done with 4.5" angle grinder. Been a few years since I tackled a project like this and I'm really shocked I actually pulled it off.... so far ;)

Finish welding, sanding and spray painting this coming weekend.
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That looks great, nice job. I’m a big fan of the low profile, no sides roof rack. Anything you put on it will be strapped down so why have sides?… is my theory. Less wind resistance, better clearance and IMOP a cleaner look.
 

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Yes i agree, sides are kinda pointless, i have been resisting a rack, mostly because i have driven 200k in a van with racks filled with gear, and i was over it! But, i may just to more easily haul boards, sups, windsurfers.

OP, how dirty was that aluminum? lots of soot in your welds. but impressive garage project!
 

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2019 Transit 350 Quigley 4x4, 130" MR 3.5 eco
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Yes i agree, sides are kinda pointless, i have been resisting a rack, mostly because i have driven 200k in a van with racks filled with gear, and i was over it! But, i may just to more easily haul boards, sups, windsurfers.

OP, how dirty was that aluminum? lots of soot in your welds. but impressive garage project!
Thanks, appreciate that! I sure could have prepped the perforated aluminum sheet better, it had some oil and scale and I just wiped it down. Using 5356 wire didn't help either, it's not known for welding as cleanly as 4043.
 

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2019 Transit 350 Quigley 4x4, 130" MR 3.5 eco
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
That looks great - Nice job.

For those without a tube bender or welder, most any welding shop could make the bends so you can take the pieces home, cut to fit, then take back to be welded.
That's a great point and thank you! The tricky part would be getting the feet dialed in so everything aligns. Or someone could just mount the platform on top of existing cross bars and call it a day.
 

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I think there is something up with the website, a lot of pictures are not showing up.
 
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