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wjs81866 12-08-2010 09:39 AM

Roof rack Cross Bar Mounting Process
I'll do my best to lay this out, not hard but there are some things that will make it go much smoother. You will find this all easier if you have a second person.

1) There are 2 bars (Hi, I'm captain obvious) but one is for the rear and one is for the front. They also have stickers on them stating which one goes where. Make sure they face the correct direction or you will have wind noise.

2) There are rubber strips that will be attached to the tops of the rails; MAKE SURE YOU CHECK THE LENGTH OF EACH STRIP! THEY ARE DIFFERENT LENGTHS. THE BARS ARE NOT THE SAME LENGTH. Don't do what I did and have to start all over because I miss-matched them. The trick to these is to get the channel on the bottom locked on one side then use your thumb to push them into the bar. Leave about 3 inches at each end to have access to the screws.

3) Back the screws off about as far as they will go, if you hold the bracket in your hands as you do this you will see the mounting bracket lips drop below the bracket housing. Once you get these to drop as far as they will go you are ready to attach to the bars. Until you drop these lips down you will not be able to get it to click into the mounting track on the Jeep. I would suggest using a piece of cardboard or something to protect the panoramic sun roof (If you have it) The allen wrench flew out of my hands once and it hit the glass, nothing happened but spooked me.

4) Once you have the lips from the mounting bracket locked into place you need to make sure that the bar is centered right to left, (This is where a second person will come in handy) if it is off set one way or the other when you tighten the screws the mounting block will be pulled over. If you do this back the screw off and center rack bar so mounting blocks sit flush on the roof track when tightened down.

5) once you have it centered and tightened down push the ends of the rubber strip down at the ends and you should be all set.

Sorry I donít have pictures of the assembly process.

MeanDean 12-08-2010 10:04 AM

Re: Roof rack Cross Bar Mounting Process
Thanks for the tips. I'm still waiting for Yakima to come up with something for the factory rails, but if they don't soon this will come in handy.

Cperez 01-08-2011 12:29 PM

Re: Roof rack Cross Bar Mounting Process
9 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by wjs81866 (Post 313787)
Sorry I don’t have pictures of the assembly process.

I got your back, wjs81866!!

Notwithstanding the valid concerns of some of our fellow JG'ers, I decided that the Mopar roof rails would meet my needs in terms of utility and security, and that they suited my taste the best in terms of looks. Hat tip to Mashie for sharing some detailed photos of his install with me as I was researching my options. As you will see, I also relied heavily on 81866's excellent writeup.:thumbsup:

Went out in a light DC snowfall this morning to get the rails at a local dealer. Took the WJ so that the WK2 would be warm and dry when I returned for the install. It was an enjoyable and satisfying DIY project that anyone can handle.

Commentary by photo #:

1. I threw this pic in just for fun. I had zero need for any of the tools but the hot coffee came in handy in my cold garage and I had dialed up this thread on my iPad to refer to 81866's walkthrough. Plus, I had the workmate set up from my recent repair project on the garage door extension springs detailed elsewhere. Props to JeepGarage. (oh yeah, my stepladder was a big help; not pictured)

2. The components come fully assembled (I removed the non-photogenic plastic from the 4 towers for this shot). I add my vote to the consensus that the printed "instructions" do nothing to edify the first-time installer. I benefitted from the advice here about the differing lengths of the rubber strips that fit into the top of each rail. Someone mentioned a touch of WD-40 to ease their insertion but I decided to go w/o lube. :eek: I found that alternating thumb presses from either side just above the rubber ridges worked to get them to drop into the slot.

3. Yes, the labeling makes the placement and orientation of the rails foolproof.

4. The screw that drops the mounting bracket into installation position is the one to the outboard end of the crossbar (the inboard screw tightens the crossbar to the tower itself but the assembly ships with some play in the connection to allow for positioning. I had no need to adjust that inboard screw at this step). There is no reason that I could see to back that outboard screw out any further than flush with its fixed retainer, as shown.

5. Note the rubber gasket where the tower meets the chrome roof rail. Make sure it is pressed up into place or it will interfere with a proper fit.

6. I tightened the two screws in back and forth fashion with a slight priority given to the inboard screw (the one that clamps the crossbar to the tower). I found that grasping the tower as shown allowed me to torque it into alignment as I tightened it down. I don't have the tools to measure the force I used to tighten these screws. The inboard screw will tighten to a firm stop and I used common sense on the outboard screw.

7. I chose to install the two crossbars at max spread (front to back) on the rails. I may have to adjust the rear crossbar forward depending on the ski rack that I end up with and how the ski overhang interacts with the liftgate when opened. Note that the outside view makes it look like the tower is mounted forward of its rearmost position, but if you look across you can see that it is in fact back all the way. The roof rails' black trimcaps curve in and create this illusion.

8. The inexplicable "lock" design. The lock has no other purpose than to prevent the removal of the end caps. The simple addition of a longer strip of metal would prevent access to the two critical screws even if a thief tore off the rubber strip. If my security needs increase I may have to re-engineer the "lock" to accomplish this. I was shaking my head as I took this photo. :confused:

9. I am very happy with the finished install! I prefer the aviation-style wing look to round crossbars. The Mopar setup adds an understated sportiness and completes the athletic look of the WK2 IMO. I tugged pretty vigorously on the finished product and can report that it feels like it is welded to the roof. No junk whatsoever.

I took way longer than is necessary on this project as I enjoyed my coffee and decided which steps warranted photos and comments. Questions welcomed and thanks again to our OP wjs81866. Any redundancy with his writeup is due to my OCD/overkill tendencies and is not a reflection on his effort!

Webbstar842 02-05-2012 12:14 PM

Man, thanks for this thread! I was starting to question my intelligence due to being unable to install these! Mopar's instructions for every product make me want to rip my hair out..

I'm cruisin' in a 2012 Mineral Grey Jeep Grand Cherokee X Series w/ the Black Leather Interior...God, I love this ride

armoredsaint 02-12-2012 07:41 AM

Re: Roof rack Cross Bar Mounting Process
i just ordered my mopar racks last night on amazon, only $218 - much better price. thanks to this thread and others full of good install info.

ajs800 02-19-2012 09:01 PM

Re: Roof rack Cross Bar Mounting Process
I have decided to go with these as well. Much wind noise with them and do they pop off easily enough to remove them often or is it a process?

ColdCase 02-20-2012 12:32 PM

Re: Roof rack Cross Bar Mounting Process
Its a bit of a process as there is a key lock to deal with and a couple screws to lossen and tighten, perhaps 15 minutes.

armoredsaint 02-20-2012 05:05 PM

Re: Roof rack Cross Bar Mounting Process
pretty easy install, did mine today - as for the rubber strip just slide it in when you remove one of the end caps with your keys.

tip is to really loosening the bolt on top for the latch to drop itself low enough to catch the rails.

Liquidlogic 03-04-2012 07:28 PM

Re: Roof rack Cross Bar Mounting Process
So I wish I did not rush the install as it was easy except I didn't realize that the bars where two differnt lengths. Long and short the rubber strip was too long so I thought it needed to be cut. AHHHHHH My bad. Now I have one too short. How do I buy a replacement part? I have looked online everywhere with no luck.

Maliberti 03-05-2012 09:57 PM

Re: Roof rack Cross Bar Mounting Process
Yakima rail grabs and 48" bars for $211from etrailer. 05-08-2012 11:19 AM

Re: Roof rack Cross Bar Mounting Process
Does anyone know if the standard Thule T-slot adapters work with these cross-bars?

Ernest 05-11-2012 10:50 AM

Re: Roof rack Cross Bar Mounting Process
Check out Rocky Road's roof rails and crossbar system ($298.) before buying the factory package. They look properly Jeep-rugged, are much sturdier, and offer a greater spread between front and rear bars.

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