Cross bar removal for roof rack | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)

Cross bar removal for roof rack

Discussion in 'Escort Wagons' started by Caviss, Dec 19, 2014.

  1. Caviss

    Caviss FEOA Member

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    I was just wondering if anyone knows how to remove the cross bars on the roof rack for a 97 wagon? Looks like there's and allen key or star bit screw underneath each end of the cross bars. Haven't had a chance to mess with it yet but I figured I'd ask on here since it's gonna be a while before I get to it. Thanks in advance
  2. novanutcase

    novanutcase FEOA Member

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    I would also like to know as I plan on removing mine also.

    John
  3. Caviss

    Caviss FEOA Member

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    Unfortunately I believe the headliner needs to be dropped as the bolts come through the roof into the crossbar brackets. At least that's what it looks like to me as I inspected it. Nothing a hacksaw and some duct tape can't fix! Haha
  4. novanutcase

    novanutcase FEOA Member

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    LOL! Easy there!

    That's what I've come up with also. I just wasn't sure if there might be an easier way without having to drop the headliner.

    Just an FYI, if you pull the racks also there will be a hole where they go through the roof trim but there were wagons that came without racks that have the trim with no holes. That's my next JY search.

    John
  5. Caviss

    Caviss FEOA Member

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    I'm kidding! Haha but yeah let me know if you find anything at the jy
  6. Rectilinear

    Rectilinear FEOA Member

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    Last weekend I had to pull the rear of my headliner down just a bit to repair the rear window washer hose. When I did, I could see that there are 2 bolts under each of the crossbars that would need to be removed with a 10mm wrench or socket. I don't see any way you could get the roof rack off without dropping that headliner board.
    Caviss likes this.
  7. Caviss

    Caviss FEOA Member

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    Thats what I thought. Thank you for checking! I appriciate it.
  8. Bigg Fella

    Bigg Fella FEOA Member

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    Just curious if anyone who's removed their rack still has it. My wife wants to add one to her rackless se wagon.
  9. Rectilinear

    Rectilinear FEOA Member

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    I'm kind of considering swapping mine out to get rid of mine but I need to make sure I have the blanks to replace it with.
  10. Bigg Fella

    Bigg Fella FEOA Member

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    Wish we lived closer together, would make a good day project
  11. Rectilinear

    Rectilinear FEOA Member

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    There are lots of wagons in the pick n pulls around here. Let me get my Zetec swap done and I'll see if I can go get the blanks for mine then maybe we can make a deal and ship them to you.
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  12. Bigg Fella

    Bigg Fella FEOA Member

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    Sounds good, I tried three today and got nothing
  13. Tnashua

    Tnashua Gearhead / hot rodder with a soft spot for Scorts

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    Anyone know if there are differences in the 2nd-3rd gen racks? I never really paid any attention- the roofs looked identical if I remember correctly...
  14. novanutcase

    novanutcase FEOA Member

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    Same...

    John
  15. Tnashua

    Tnashua Gearhead / hot rodder with a soft spot for Scorts

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    Thanks John...
    I've got a rack (still on the 95 wagon sitting out at a friends place) that I'd sell. Wagon is located in South Central Iowa. I've never removed one, so I do not know how long to expect the process to take. If any of you who are interested in a rack do not find one locally- PM me & we'll see if something can be worked out.
    Have a good day :)
  16. novanutcase

    novanutcase FEOA Member

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    It's not hard. Just takes time as you need to be careful when you're pulling off the interior trim to be able to drop the headliner.

    Here's a write up I did for someone else:

    "The plastic interior trim panels are held on by snap holders so all you have to do is pull the trim and it should snap off. Some might be held down with little plastic buttons but that depends on the year of your car. If there is a button fastener just pry up the center button with a flat blade screwdriver and the whole fastener should come out. It may require a bit of a tug for the plastic interior trim to unsnap so just be careful you don't break the interior trim. The plastic trim around where the rear seat belt is can only come completely off if you unbolt the seat belt holder. I just left it on and pulled the trim out of the way to get to the nuts. You'll have to unscrew the dome light and visors also. The dome light has a plastic connector for power that you'll need to unclip to move the dome light out of the way when you drop the headliner. If you have grab bars installed on the roof then you'll need to remove those too. They have a little plastic cover at each end that you need to pry off to get to the screws. There are little metal tabs at the back where the cargo area is that holds up the back part of the headliner that are under the rear trim that snaps off. Once you remove everything all you need to do is pull the headliner towards the front of the car and it should pop out. Be careful not to damage the headliner. If you have a buddy that can help an extra pair of hands makes the job much easier especially when it comes time to pull the headliner down so as not to damage it. You don't need to remove the headliner from the car. Just drop it to get access to the screws. I've pulled my headliner out of my car before and it's a bitch to get it to come out of the car completely. I had to kick the front seats back all the way down along with the rear seat so that I had room to maneuver it. I had to pull the front part of the headliner out of the driver side door then pull it out of the car from the rear passenger side rear door. Not fun.

    Now that you have the headliner out of the way the best way to pull the roof trim off is to loosen all the nuts first before you pull them off the top of the car. There are 13 nuts including the ones that hold down the cross bars on each side. The filler trim is probably fairly brittle from being in the sun so that's why I say pull all the nuts off first so that when you are pulling the trim you don't damage it. It shouldn't take much to loosen the nuts and once they are loose they should be able to come off with your fingers. Once you get all the nuts off CAREFULLY pry up the trim with a single blade screwdriver being careful to not snap off the mount posts. Pay special attention to the end posts. If even one breaks off the trim is no good and will not seal the roof from water so it's important that the trim and mount posts are intact! There will probably be some sort of sticky tape underneath the trim helping to seal it and have it stick to the car. There should be a plastic gasket that helps seal the roof on each trim piece towards the back of the trim."


    John
    Last edited: May 25, 2015
  17. Bigg Fella

    Bigg Fella FEOA Member

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    those were excellent instructions, I followed them to the letter when I put the rack on my wife's bald wagon Khalessi, the dragon wagon.
    IMG_20150514_182754.jpg

    Only thing to remember is when you get the blanks to fill in the space, there is a little difference in mounts where the anchor points are on rack equipped cars. My filler blanks had one stud in the center and nothing where the anchor points are whereas the rack side fillers had studs under each anchor point so if you're removing the rack for blanks you have to remove the stud in the center and have one side of where you removed it.
    If you're adding a rack to rackless cars, be ready to drill into the roof. Fortunately it's fairly easy because of the brackets inside the car on the roof with holes where the rack would mount.

    20150514_104106.jpg
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  18. novanutcase

    novanutcase FEOA Member

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    Lookin' good my man!!!:thumbsup:

    John
  19. Bigg Fella

    Bigg Fella FEOA Member

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    Thanks to you sir!
  20. novanutcase

    novanutcase FEOA Member

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    Did you replace the headliner? I remember you mentioning about reupholstering the headliner, maybe with some funky material?

    John

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