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Sunroof bad idea?

15366 Views 26 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  surly Bill
Sunroofs are not a manufacturer option nor do they seem very popular any more.

Are Sunroofs no longer considered a good idea?
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A sunroof is a difficult thing to put in a Transit because of the bowed roof. Either a whole lot of goop to fill the gaps on the ends, or convince Hein to make a sunroof adapter like his vent adapter. I'd LOVE to stick in a pop-up sunroof.
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2 nonpowered Sunroofs plus a Maxxfan installed on a Ford Transit.

Those look like deck hatches, which is just as good.
I assume that a powered sunroof CAN be installed. Even though it takes more room than is available between the ceiling ribs, so does a pop-top. It would be a lot of fabrication (and $) but I'm absolutely certain a powered sunroof could be fitted into a Transit.
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Most of the aftermarket sunroofs are in the 15x30, 17x32 size range.
Take a 30" straightedge and set it on your Transit roof and see how well THAT would work!
The smallest manual sunroofs I've found are the "his and hers" 17x17.
Cutout is 16-5/8" x 16-5/8", total size is 17-5/8" x 17-5/8".
That would probably work on a Transit roof with some shims and filler on the sides. It's not much bigger than a 14x14 vent.
Around $200 though.
We just received the CR Laurence Autoport 15” x 30” (AP1530B5H). Haven’t installed it yet, but it looks like the curvature of the sunroof is probably going to work out OK with a little extra butyl tape on the sides. 🤞🤞

The instruction book is terrible. There are different options for the trim ring, which I didn’t realize until after it arrived, so if you want to order one, check if “universal, molded, or van trim ring” is best for your application.
One thing I considered with a sunroof installation was making my own tapercut fillers out of PVC/ABS/Polyethylene or some other plastic. Like a large bespoke version of Hein's vent adapters.

There are solid plastic trim boards at lumber stores that would work, and so would plastic decking boards but NOT Trex, which has sawdust filler.

If you have a tapercut jig for your tablesaw, you can make the wedges for the exterior and interior with repeatable accuracy. If not, a steady hand and guides with a circular saw might work. A jigsaw would be my tool of last resort. The end piece would just be a flat strip. You need something rigid so you can screw the sunroof to the trim ring without screwing up the roof sheetmetal or bowing the sunroof or trim ring. Once in place, a layer of Dicor or sealant tape would keep it all sealed up nicely.

I'm eager to see how it turns out, I've been considering the same thing. What are the depths the trim rings will accommodate? I think my ceiling is about 2" thick.
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