roof rack side or no side?

sandcruiser

....back in the saddle again....
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I'm about to put my conferr rack back on top of the cruiser and I've been thinking....

why not cut off the front/rear and sides to make it a platform? I've already got expanded metal on the floor, so its easy to hook straps into.

Most of the time I'll be carrying surfboards, which is actually a lot easier without the front/back of the rack. Maybe some baggage or a bicycle once in a while.
I've got plenty of straps. I can tie down stuff that would move around.

Thoughts?

I figure that by cutting the sides off I can save a little weight and maybe improve the aerodynamics a little.

Am I foolin myself? I mean.... I don't do much highway. Is the aero going to matter *at all*?

So to clarify:
I'm thinking to either:
1) leave it alone
2) chop the front only and bend the top bar down to make it look more like
this
attachment.php

3) chop the front and rear, leaving just the sides
4) chop it all! just have a platform
 
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From a structural point of view, the sides provide structural stiffness such that you can haul more load. Same concept as to why, with the same car model, a hard top performs better around corners than a rag top.

How's the surf?
 

sandcruiser

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online isn't an option in Costa Rica.
Besides, I've *got* the confer rack sitting in my driveway taking up space, no good reason to get *another* rack.

I'm mostly thinking about chopping off the front and back, but maybe the front, back and sides.

the rigidity issue is a good point. I don't plan to carry anything that heavy up there anyway. I've done heavy racks, don't like 'em.

Still leaning towards the platform approach... but there might be some logic to not hacking up the conferr.

More opinions welcome
 
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I took the old wood platform out of my rack, sanded repainted and replaced with a large gauge wire mesh, lost ~150 lbs and ~3-4 mpg.
But dont start cutting, you can get what you need without chopping up a good rack\.02
 

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