Do-it-yourself with YouTuber Patrick and his radical roof rack.
Some 400 hours of video footage are uploaded to YouTube every minute – and that’s just one of countless unbelievable facts and figures about the video platform. And let’s not forget that it’s the world’s second-largest search engine after Google. In other words, YouTube is a place where many users can go to have their questions answered and gain insights into new areas – and we’re not just talking about mainstream topics such as beauty, video games and sports. In fact, there is a particularly diverse DIY community on the platform, with a number of dedicated YouTubers providing niche content for an eager audience. Patrick Marx, known online as “KissThePro”, is one of these creators. Although he spends his working week in an office, he dedicates his spare time to tinkering away at his passion projects, all the while sharing his progress with his viewers. He diligently fine-tunes his VW camper van, converting it, bit by bit, into his dream machine – which wouldn’t be complete without the perfect roof rack. While researching the best way to bring his design to life, Patrick stumbled across item and quickly recognised the potential of the MB Building Kit System.
On the hunt for the perfect solution
For Patrick, a passionate handyman and outdoorsman, it quickly became clear that he needed a roof rack for his camper van. It’s the only way he could transport enough gear all at once – everything from saws and axes to a surfboard and a barbecue. However, the racks available on the market left a lot to be desired: “They are good, but far too expensive. I also wanted to be able to customise my rack to suit my needs.” It was therefore clear he would have to take matters into his own hands. Once he had made the fundamental decision to use aluminium, Patrick took to Google to begin his search and typed “aluminium profile configurator” into the search bar. He soon came across the item Engineeringtool and was able to quickly create an initial design.
As a newcomer to mechanical engineering, he wasn’t very familiar with our products, so he came up with a promising idea. “I just asked item if I could go and see the products in person. It all worked out perfectly, and I was able to see everything the products had to offer at the Mannheim branch. That’s when it all clicked, and I knew exactly how I had to build the aluminium roof rack,” says the YouTuber. With that in mind, he decided to use item Profiles 8 80×40 to implement his design. Thanks to the item Engineeringtool, which automatically determined the appropriate Fastening Sets, he was able to turn his ideas into reality. Shortly after, the profiles were delivered pre-prepared and pre-drilled – all that was left to do was screw them together. Before doing that, “KissThePro” painted them black (although item does offer profiles already in black). His takeaway from this experience is clear: “The quality of the profiles is outstanding, and they look really good, too.”
Very few aluminium roof racks are as versatile as this
The finished aluminium roof rack is 1.50 m wide and 2.60 m long, weighing an estimated 60 to 64 kg, according to the YouTuber. Besides the convenience of online engineering and the rack’s stability, he also appreciates how versatile the aluminium profiles are. This ended up being a crucial factor, as Patrick’s initial design for the roof rack was too wide, and so he had to position it slightly lower. This meant the rack would have projected beyond the roof. However, he was able to solve this problem by simply shortening the crossbars. “I doubt that would have been an option with other models – so this is a really striking feature. This solution offers a great deal of flexibility, meaning I’m free to make changes later if necessary,” the handyman emphasises. Of course, the project is far from over now that the aluminium roof rack has been mounted onto the van. Patrick has plans to install LED headlights to the front of the rack and tool holders at the sides. This will be no problem thanks to the flexible T-Slot Nuts, which provide attachment options everywhere on the structure and can be used to mount holders.
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