25 November 2012

DeLorean Luggage Rack

Parts of the DeLorean Luggage Rack (A30000010)
I finally found the time to install the Luggage Rack on the DeLorean.  Time was not the only problem I encountered while doing this very simple project.  The Luggage Rack comes with instructions that are easy to follow, even for me.  Here are the steps I went through, including some 'extra' steps that I did not plan on.

Removal of Support Buffer (108720/108721)
The Luggage Rack brackets are mounted to the rear quarter panels, where the foam rubber Support Buffers are.  So, first thing to do is, to remove these buffers.  Be careful not to damage these, as you will reuse them later.  Keep in mind that these are over thirty years old and if they are cracked, it is a good idea to get a new set.  Mine were in good enough condition...or as some would call it, 'too cheap to spend $100 for a new set, condition'.

Layout template
Punching a dimple in the rear quarter panel
The kit comes with a template to help you layout the hole that need to be drilled out.  I found that these measurements were a little off, the brackets should be mounted about a quarter inch closer to the rear of the car.  Or, perhaps my panels are a bit off.  I marked where the holes should be with a trusty Sharpie, then used a punch to mark the center.  The instructions ask for a punch to make a dimple, so your drill bit does not travel.  This is a good idea, also a good idea to have a sharp drill bit. 

Custom punch made by Ted Lubin
That brings me to my first delay in the project. I did not have any 'sharp' drill bits.  Luckily, we have a shop at work that has an endless supply of drill bits...and tapping fluid.  I recommend some tapping fluid to keep the bit from overheating.  Also, have an extra bit or two in case they overheat and get dull.  And, if you do not have a punch, get a buddy that can make you one out of a large drill blank.

Holes drilled
Once the first set of holes are drilled out, I mounted the bracket.  This part is trickier than it seems.  There is very little room to hold the screw plate that the screws go into.  The screws tend to not want to catch on the the threads...which leads to the plate falling to the pontoon.  Ah, this leads to another delay for me.  There is a gap between the pontoon and the rear quarter panel.  This gap it the perfect width for the backing plate to fall into...never to be seen again.  Ask me how I know that.

Luggage Rack bracket, one of four
Pro Tip:  Place a towel (or similar) against the pontoon and glass/panel to catch any falling debris.  This will prevent the loss of critical mounting parts, like screws and backing plates.  Also helps with ease of clean up as it catches shavings, and protects the finish of your pontoon from tools that you may have laying close by.

Luckily, the shop has an endless supply of screws and nuts.  This works just as well as the backing plate, but does not look as clean.  Meh.

Once one bracket is mounted, the other ones are a lot easier.  I started with the top left (looking at it from the rear), on to the top right.  I suggest measuring where the hole is in relation to the end of the quarter panel. My first bracket is 14.25 inches to the bottom hole.  Like I said earlier, it should be about a quarter inch lower.  Hopefully, if you need to do this, the measurements in the instructions work for you...and your panels are mounted in harmony.

'Dry mounting' the Luggage Rack
With the two upper brackets installed, I 'dry mounted' the Luggage Rack to mark the holes for the lower brackets.  Hard to see in the picture, but my upper mounts are too close together.  There should be more play for the upper mounts and the elongated holes of the rack.  I recommend dry mounting the rack before hand and mark where the upper brackets 'want to' go, use the included template as reference only.

Marking location of lower mounting bracket
Brackets mounted.  Fitting that I use a DeWalt on a DeLorean
Since there is no strut in the way, the lower brackets are much easier to mount.  Same steps as before, mark, punch, drill, and mount.  Hey, that sounds like steps for something totally different.

Marking Support Buffer for cutting
Remember that Support Buffer?  Time to do some trimming and put it back onto the rear quarter panel.  We do not want the louver banging on the quarter panels.  I used s silver Sharpie to mark the foam rubber.  Always good to have two contrasting colours of Sharpie handy.

Trimming the Support Buffers to fit
This is should be the easiest part of the project.  Cutting thirty year old foam rubber is quite easy.  Use a sharp blade to avoid injury.  Remember, 'measure twice, cut once'.

Trimmed and replaced Support Buffer
The genius of the design is it puts all the weight onto the pillar of the stainless steel rear quarter panels, and not on the fiberglass louvers.  Also, the brackets fold down when not in use, therefore not interfering with the body lines.  You do see the brackets dangling in the rear window, but very few will notice this.

Close up of lower mounting brackets

Close up of upper mounting brackets
Luggage Rack project finished...finally
When not in use, the Luggage Rack goes in the luggage compartment.  The Luggage Rack was an 'add on' item to address the fact the the rear wheels will not fit in the limited space of the luggage compartment.  If one was to get a rear flat, the only place to put the rear wheel was in the passenger compartment.  If you had a passenger, it would be an uncomfortable ride to the tire shop.  The 'dealer option' of the Luggage Rack gave owners a place to put that large/wide rear wheel.  Hopefully, I (or any owner) will never have to use it for that purpose.  I just wanted to have it, just to have it.  I doubt I will ever use it.  Although, I have toyed with the idea of mounting a bike rack on it, or use it to strap down my hockey bag if needed.

There you have it, a sort of how to for installing a Luggage Rack.  Time of install, not including delays, was about two hours.

On to the next project.


Martini said...

You have to put that rack to use! Road trip! Our spare room is always open to you.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting. I just installed mine and your posting was very helpful.

Unknown said...

Thanks for posting this. I'm just about ready to put mine on 11633 to carry a Sinclair C5. You have likely saved me a lot of heartache