These aren’t anything new — and are well documented in several places. So I won’t delve into detail on materials or assembly. The hardest thing to find are the vibration clamps… so here’s a link to those. They’re a smidgen too big, so you’ll need some silicone, an old bike inner tube, or 1/8″ thick rubber strip to create a snug fit to the roof rails. The only other thing I did a little different is I used aluminum. I couldn’t find anyone else who had tried it — so to my knowledge — I’m the guinea pig.
The reason for the change was to drop the center of gravity and overall height of the truck as much as possible. Overall, I lost about 50 pounds off the roof in weight and dropped the overall height about four inches (when the bars are positioned under the side rails).
Another thing I like about this setup is how flexible it is. The Uni-strut platform allows for all kinds of mounting options. Flipping the bars on top of the side rails provides more width for mounting items — as well as — the ability to carry long items (like lumber or paddle boards).
No, the aluminum uni-strut rails are not as beefy as my Dep Hep was. But the trade-offs for our use I think out weigh that.