Pictured: Eric Keller (@evergreen_rnr) Victory Full-Length Roof Rack
Feature Friday: Top 10 CNC Roof Rack Options – An Off-Road Rig Inspiration Guide
This Weeks Topic: CNC Roof Racks
Aside from wheels, tires, and LED headlights, the most popular 4Runner modification has to be a roof rack. Roof racks add a TON of modularity and functionality to your build. Whether you need it to house an RTT, awning, traction boards, or plywood for home renovations (totally me), an aftermarket roof rack is the way to go. But where do you start? Well, in the ever-growing overland scene, with companies popping up left and right, it is hard to know which rack is best for your rig. So in this Feature Friday post, we will be cover some popular CNC style roof racks and getting a little insight about each brand from these owners.
CNC roof racks are machine cut so there is very very little room for error when they are made. A large plus too for CNC racks is that the companies are able to produce more of them faster so there aren’t crazy wait times *cough* *cough* GOBI… Oftentimes too, these racks are very lightweight while staying strong and rigid due to the multiple crossbars they come with. I hope this list below helps you all in your decision for your roof rack purchase!
Enjoy and have a great weekend!
If you want to be featured on Feature Friday next week, submit your build through Trail4R.com/feature. We will be featuring DITCH LIGHT SETUPS next week. If this is you, and you love your setup, send in your rig and your lighting details because we want to see it!
Top Brands Featured
1. Daniel Khimthang (@Daily.4r) Alpha Foxtrot
- Rack Style: Aluminum Side Rails with T Slot Horizontal Slats
- Rack Length: Full
- Drill/No Drill: No Drill
- Lightbar cut out: 44”
- Weight: 50lbs
- Dimensions: 94” L x 47” W x 3” H
- Alphafoxtrot tie-down eyelets for strapping this down on the rack
- Alphafoxtrot universal mounting brackets for my traction boards.
- Alphafoxtrot universal awning mount
- Alphafoxtrot exterior side mount Molle panel (rear window accessory mounts for my rotopax)
What I love most about this rack are the modular features. The crossbars are T- Slots that you can drop in a 1/4 carriage on either end of the crossbars. You do not have to take the crossbars off to add any mounting accessories. The rear fairing and the horizontal side rails of the roof rack have an M-lok design to where you can drop a 1/4″ carriage bolts and eyelets in, slide it over and notch it down right away. This means that the nondrilling feature continues to give on this rack! This makes adding chase lights to the rear a breeze for example. We all know those are important on dusty trails.
2. Brenan Greene (@Trail4R) M-Rack
- KC LIGHTS Pro6 M-Rack
- Pro6 Light Bar w/ custom caps
- 4 x C-series scene lights
- 4 x Lamin-X Amber film
- CVT MT. Hood (Medium tan) 56”
- Midland Radio antenna
- WeBoost Antenna
- Agency6 rack handles
- Storage box mounts when not running tent
- Plano storage box
- Quickfist mounts for shovel/axe
- Fiskars Axe / Bond Shovel
Pictured here is the KC lights Pro6 M-Rack. The Pro6 is the light bar capped with amber + Toyota caps. M-Rack is the actual brand of rack which is owned by KC. This rack and light bar combo is freaking rad. Reminds me of a trophy truck style build – and you can customize the caps with your design of choice (given you know someone with AI skills). It’s a pretty stout rack but it does require drilling. It would be nice if KC offered a non-drill option. The Pro6 light bar is also pretty heavy so to prevent the rubber stopper bushing from rubbing on the glass, I’d consider making a custom bracket to support the extra weight. Seen here I’m running a CVT from Spirit of 1876 which is a medium size (56”) in tan material. It weighs around 180-200lbs when it’s fully loaded with bedding, crossbars, and accessories. For side lighting, I’m running 4 x C-series scene lights covered in amber Lamin-x. I’m also running a WeBoost and Midland antenna. When I’m not running the tent, I’m running a storage box with my camping stove, some accessories, and a mattress for a ground tent. I like the RTT setup but it is on the heavy side.
3. Sandy Vejarano (@ds_offroad) AL Off-Road
- Large fairing makes it super noise-proof
- Rust Proof!
- High-strength Aluminum
- Features matching brackets and stainless steel hardware
- Notched for multiple tie-down points
- Slotted for incredible adjustability
- Strong enough to mount your RTT
AL Offroad 5th gen 4Runner full roof rack with EXTREME LED light bar and Roofnest rooftop tent. A great roof rack made in Texas, using what they call “Wumbo” bars that are stronger than most crossbars out there. The design is beautiful and has no noise at all!
4. (@mcald18) Sherpa
- Rack Style: Aluminum Side Rails with Horizontal Slats (truly flat top)
- Side Rail Material: 6061 aluminum alloy
- Cross Bar Dimensions: 1″x2″x47″
- Number of Cross Bars: 9
- Rack Length: Full
- Drill/No Drill: No Drill
- Weight: 50 lbs.
- Load Rating: 300 lbs. dynamic / 700 lbs. static
- Dimensions: 95”L x 47.5″W x 2.5”H
Mounted to the Rack:
- Yakima Skyrise HD Medium RTT (58″x48″x17″ folded, 115#, 4 seasons, tool-free/lockable mounting)
- Yakima Slim Shady Awning (attached with Sherpa’s awning mounts)
- Pelican 42″ case (attached to Sherpa’s Adapt Plate) housing our GoTreads and misc. wet/dirty camping items.
Sherpa Equipment Co. was extremely easy to work with. From the beginning (before I decided to go with them), the owner/founder was extremely responsive in answering all my questions regarding the rack, installation, specifications, etc. The no-drill design, coupled with the pressure mounting foot (no silicone needed) and the thicker than traditional (6061 alloys vs 5052) side plates made the installation of this rack a breeze.
Functionally, there are a few items that really make this rack stand out. The fully slotted 9 crossbars, coupled with longer crossbar slots, make attaching anything to this rack extremely simple as well as extremely adjustable. The powder coating is of high quality and the fit/finish of all parts is top of the line. Additionally, the integrated handles/tie-downs make accessing anything on the rack extremely easy.
Upon receiving my rack about 6 months ago, my wife and I (and our 90# lab) immediately loaded up on a cross-country camping/fishing trip through Montana and Wyoming. The rack performed flawlessly. There was zero wind noise from the rack (quieter than the stock rack). The quality of the rack definitely gave us peace of mind while on our 5,874mi trip.
After using this rack in a variety of situations from off-roading to camping to being a daily driver to weekend hardware store runs (a full sheet of plywood fits perfectly) I personally have zero complaints. The only cons I would have had in the beginning were the cost and the lead time associated with getting it. Although these were negatives at the time, I would say this is probably on par with many other companies, and Sherpa was in touch the entire time re: shipping updates, etc.
5. Daniel Cooke (@theafrooverlander) Prinsu
I am running Prinsu Design’s full roof rack. The rack has @alphafoxtrotdesign driver/passenger molle panels mounted to the rear window, six (6) @vicoffroad_usa lights (two on each side), I am also running the CBI quick-release awning mount which is holding my @yescomusa awning, a 200W @renogysolar solar panel, 95L roam storage case, 11gallon @frontrunner water tank which is connected to a 12V water pump, two Prinsu Design bottle openers and lastly two paracords for grabbing onto.
I really like the pressurized water feature on this setup. To achieve this, I mounted the @frontrunneroutfitters 11gallon tank to the roof rack, built a hose that connects the tank to a 12V water pump I got off Amazon and threw in @thewaterport 16ft retractable hose (stores curled up on top of the vehicle) which allows me to reach the cargo area of the 4runner when cooking or to turn off campfires before leaving the site.
6. Nathan King (@Nathan _King _Overland) Frontrunner
- Frontrunner Outfitters aluminum full rack
- Front Runner LED Lightbar
- Napa 8’ X 8’ awning
- Waterport 8 Gallon Weekender
- 4 merit sockets
- Shovel and ax mount
I like the lightness of the rack (I had steel on my last build) and the ability to customize it with the Frontrunner channel system is next level.
7. William Minor (@Provectus_curt) Prinsu
- Prinsu Full non drill Roof Rack
- Pelican 1750 and vault 700 storage
- Xbull recovery boards
The modularity is awesome with this rack. If you need to slide a crossbar down for more stability, you have that option as well. Little to no road noise with this setup, it’s awesome!
8. Eric Keller (@evergreen_rnr) Victory
- Victory 4×4 Full Length No Drill Roof Rack
- 42″ Diode Dynamics White Spot Lightbar
- Small (50″) CVT Mt Hood Single Channel RTT
- 79″ CVT Hybrid Series Awning
- (4) ActionTrax Traction Boards
- GMRS Ghost Antenna Mount
The thing I love the most about this setup is how modular and compact it is. The low-profile Victory 4×4 rack combined with the single-channel Mt Hood RTT makes for a very slim setup. Without the crossbars on the RTT, the highest point on the vehicle only measures ~8″ above the roof of the 4Runner. Being this low profile is really needed when out adventuring and getting into more technical trails since I don’t have to worry as much about being top-heavy. The weight is as evenly distributed and low as possible (not to say I don’t have to worry at all…).
Both Victory4x4 and CVT have designed modular features into their racks and tents in terms of removable accessories which was very important to me when determining what to go with. If you want to add an RTT, lightbar, sidelights, shovels, rotopax, etc to the rack then Victory4x4 makes a bolt accessory for you. If you want to add an awning to the side of your RTT or carry something on top of your RTT then CVT has brackets and crossbars for you. As someone who can turn a wrench as good as any YouTube certified wrench turner can but lacks the facilities to make custom brackets/mounts, having these able to be purchased is really nice.
After switching to the super slim CVT Mt Hood I also use the remaining space to mount items that take up too much space inside or that get frequently dirty or muddy like traction boards.
I have also found that the aluminum extrusion is a very handy place to mount brackets for antennas or lights. Being able to mount a small discrete antenna that sits just behind the tent gives the best reception while in a group but also gives me the ability to swap out a large whip antenna if I need the extra range. Also, having an easy spot to mount a large lightbar really helps living in the PNW since we arrive at camp in the dark almost every trip in the fall and winter. With the aluminum extrusion crossbars, if I ever want to add side lighting or chase lights it’s as simple as dropping in a T-nut and bolting the lights to the crossbar and wiring them.
Above all, I really love the simple utility that comes with a setup like this. Our 4Runners are never done, we switch out things that don’t work or we don’t like in an effort to find that perfect combo, and having a rack and RTT that are modular and have easy mounting points like this really facilitates “perfecting” my loadout.
10/10 would highly recommend!!!
9. Andy Young (@young.william.a) RCI
I am running the beautiful RCI Offroad full-length roof rack. It has a full-height front fairing and eight crossbars. Currently, the only things I have on top of the rack are RCI Offroad roof rack accessory plates and Actiontrax recovery boards. There are plans in the works to add some additional water and gas storage on top of the rack.
I am a huge fan of RCI Offroad and its products. The roof rack is aluminum and lightweight. It weighs about 54 lbs and comes with plenty of crossbars. The t-slot crossbars have plenty of utility and make the rack extremely sturdy. Black powdering coating is included with their roof racks. It didn’t really hurt my MPG that much and I don’t notice any additional noise or vibrations. The price was very reasonable for such a solid product. The best thing is that it was made hours up the road from me in Colorado.
10. Tito Salazar (@Illit4r) Victory
- Victory 4×4 roof rack full
- Smittybilt RTT gen 2
- Victory 4×4 Awing bracket
- Tuff Stuff Awing
- Recovery Boards
- Cali raised LED 40 inch Amber light bar
- Cali raised PODS for the rear
- More to come!
I enjoy having the ability to plug and play with different setups. I’m not changing it every month but if I want to upgrade something it’s accessible to get too and you don’t need a million tools.
With lots of options to choose from, I hope this Feature Friday gave you a good example of some racks that the overland aftermarket has to offer. CNC racks are pretty lightweight yet strong and since they are machine-made, there is very little room for error. I hope you were inspired!! Now, let’s get some trail lighting for the next Feature Friday! Thanks guys!!
If you would like to be considered for next week’s Feature Friday, we will be showcasing ditch light set-ups on 5th Gen 4Runners. We want to get inspired by all the different options on the market, submit your build for Feature Friday and you might get featured. If you would like to submit your build for next week, include your ditch light setup details and an awesome photo that shows it off. Have a great weekend guys!!