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2020 Ranger 570 Full Size Crew, OEM top, aftermarket front and rear windshields, Maxxis Ceros tires.
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Discussion Starter #1
Thinking I want a cargo rack elevated above the bed rails several inches. There are some nice ones available in the aftermarket but not quite what I want relative to the height off the bed and size overall.

This Harbor Freight hitch carrier caught my eye this weekend. My 2020 570 Full size crew bed opening is 54" in width (approx). This rack is 51.5" wide and 19.5" long (outside dimensions). That fits the bed opening fairly well. My thoughts are assembling the rack without the 2" receiver hitch tube. I watched an assembly video and that would work fine with shorter bolts where the 2" tube would be absent. The two channel braces on the outside edges could easily be shortened and new holes drilled on one end to compensate for the 2" less in length without the hitch tube. Some 2" x 2" steel angle could be used on the bed rail to anchor it to the bed. I have some tree stands with 1" square tubing parts that I scrapped to use for legs that could be welded to the 2" angle and then bolted to the outer tubes on the carrier.

Anyone have any experience using something like this for a bed cargo rack? I haven't been able to find any DIY pics of something like that.
 

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I was thinking about something similar at one time. However, I was considering getting 1-1/4" pipe and doing tight 90 degree bends so essentially you end up with two "U" shaped frame pieces (upside down) the width of the bed to bolt want ever you want too by either thru bolting it or even u clamps. That pipe would then fit right into the cargo holes inside the bed so all you have to do is lift it out or set it into place.
 

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2020 Ranger 570 Full Size Crew, OEM top, aftermarket front and rear windshields, Maxxis Ceros tires.
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Discussion Starter #3
I'll try not to make this boring but since I was just told my full cab enclosure is delayed until Christmas due to Covid related delays I have time to ponder projects like this.

Your suggestion of the tubing makes sense. I just have to find someone who can do the bends in that size tubing. Probably 1" EMT would be strong enough and should fit the holes pretty well.

This all started with finding a means to mount rear facing lights over the bed for these winter months when everything I do is after work and in the dark. Plus mount a SMV triangle high enough that it isn't blocked by things like coolers and totes when out on the road.
Ranger 570FS Bed.PNG

My buggy is old style with round tube roll bars that have a curve in the vertical posts near the front of the bed. That means the bars going up from the bed pockets have to be away from the front bed a few inches if they are straight vertical. Anything like a headache rack will block the area above the bed rails. Anything put in the front of the bed has to be lower than the top of the bed. Or the headache rack has to be built where it meets the front of the bed and lean backward a few inches. I have been married for over 40 years. That means when we go anywhere away from home for the afternoon we have to take almost everything except the kitchen sink with us. That includes folding chairs, small folding table (very small), and a small propane grill for brats, etc. We love to have picnics in remote places. The bed rack seems like a good option if mounted high enough to clear coolers and totes and hold the chairs, table, and grill. Nothing heavy. It sounds like we are packing for the Dakar race but it is only creature comforts.

With the rack mounted 6-8" above the bed rails it would clear the items in the bed, and allow for a small roll bar type hoop to be attached to the bed rack rails and mount the rear work lights on that. Keeping the lights below the roof line but above any obstacles. Rather than building the entire rack from scratch the HF hitch carrier seems like a ready made rack in need of some mounting legs. See my crude drawing below.
Ranger 570FS Bed Rack.jpg
 

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I agree and like your idea! The rack will make it super easy and the legs like I've mentioned just give you and easy way to mount the rack. You can mount the legs further back on the rack or even further forward how ever it works out bent then bolt the rack to them.
As far as making the legs, harbor freight sells pipe benders or any fabrication shop should be able to make you those very cheap if you just give them dimensions between the center of your bed holes and the height you want.

I love utilizing the bed pockets because it makes things easy. A super last minute idea I had after finding out we were taking neighbors kids on a ride with us, I actually mounted an air boat seat onto two 2x6 planks then used all thread through the bed pockets to mount it. Super sturdy and easy to remove, not to mention pretty comfy!
 

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2020 Ranger 570 Full Size Crew, OEM top, aftermarket front and rear windshields, Maxxis Ceros tires.
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Discussion Starter #5
A neighbor, good buddy, has a Harbor Freight pipe bender like you described. We texted about the subject today. We hope to spend a few minutes together in his shop later this week or weekend to brainstorm the idea with the ranger and rack in front of us. Thankfully he is just around the country block we live on. Maybe a mile away. And his shop has a wood stove. I'll bring the bourbon.
 

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Where are you located? If your around me your welcome to bring it to the shop and I’ll gladly help you build it. For that matter we can build the entire thing from scratch.
 

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2020 Ranger 570 Full Size Crew, OEM top, aftermarket front and rear windshields, Maxxis Ceros tires.
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Discussion Starter #7
West of St Louis.
 

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2020 Ranger 570 Full Size Crew, OEM top, aftermarket front and rear windshields, Maxxis Ceros tires.
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Discussion Starter #9
Physically yes. . But I married a "Natural Born Texican" over 40 years ago. Texas sits next to me at the dinner table every night.
 
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