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2014, 138WB, High Roof, Gas, SW MT
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi,
Looks like we are off to the Dempster highway again, and based on the tire problems we had last time and our recent two tire failure problem in Iceland, we are adding a rear door carrier for a 2nd spare.



Its pretty simple - there is a plywood reinforcement glued to the inside of the door, and puck like gadget glued to the outside of the door. Three bolts with heads on the inside go through the inside plywood reinforcement, then the door skin, then the outside puck - they extend far enough beyond the puck to hang the spare on.

The tire is mounted vertically such that it is just a touch off the bumper and a spacer fits between the bottom of tire and bumper such that you can close/open the door easily, but close enough so that the bumper takes some of the vertical load - particularly for heavy pothole hits.


Inside of door plywood reinforcement.


The puck that fits on outside of door.



Two 5/8 inch bolts and one half inch bolt support the tire. The puck thickness is such that the tire just touches the door sheet metal, which makes it more stable.

It would have been nice to mount it on the left door, but we did not want to get into moving the license plate holder and light.

The tire is flipped so that the deep part of the wheel dish faces inward. This has pros and cons. It reduces the overhang and gets the tire support point to only 1.5 inches from the door skin. But, you lose access to the tire inflation valve. We thought the better load path as worth it.

Total cost was about $20 :) -- with some parts in hand already

It seems very robust to me, but the real test will be on the Dempster.

More detail on my website...

Too late for us to change much of anything, but I'm interested in any thoughts for improvement - or, disaster predictions :)

Gary
 

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MMXVI - L2H2 in IN
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I'll just say it, that's not allowed and door hinges will fail :)

That's the kind of stuff I do :)
 

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MMXVI - L2H2 in IN
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What's it like lifting the tire and don't lie :)
 

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2014, 138WB, High Roof, Gas, SW MT
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
What's it like lifting the tire and don't lie :)
Well, it beats getting out from under the van :)

Its plenty heavy enough for this not so young guy.
But, it helps that (just by happen stance) the upper bolt is longer and only half inch diameter, so you can hang it on the upper bolt and then work it onto the two 5/8th lower bolts.

Gary
 

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2018 136 HR Ont.
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2014, 138WB, High Roof, Gas, SW MT
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·

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@GaryBIS
Right now your bolts are roughly straight out, do you foresee the bolt holes wallowing out and the bolts tilting down over time?
 

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2014, 138WB, High Roof, Gas, SW MT
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
@GaryBIS
Right now your bolts are roughly straight out, do you foresee the bolt holes wallowing out and the bolts tilting down over time?
Hi Phil,
Good question.
I think the bolts will be OK because the puck and the plywood are glued to the door skin, and I think the puck would have to slide down for the bolts to tilt and since it glued to the door skin with really good glue, I don't think it will. I guess the Dempster will test this :)
The glue on a 5 inch circle and with a shear strength of 1000 psi should be capable of something like 20,000 lb.

I think that if the puck is not glued to the door skin it would very likely allow the bolts to tilt down over time.

On reason I like flipping the tire around is that it reduces the offset of the wheel from the door to 1.5 inches, so any tendency to tilt should be reduced. The tire getting some support from the bumper should also help.

Will see - its an experiment.

Gary
 

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2018 159 High Roof gas, BC, Canada
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I don't know how long these hold air but it came to mind as a removable shim for under the tire.
https://www.amazon.com/Winbag-15730-Wedge-Alignment-Inflatable/dp/B00NESAU0U
Interesting! Maybe use that in conjunction with a 2-pronged device where the 2 prongs go around the windbag (sp).

Inflate the windbag, slide the 2-pronged device under the tire (and on the bumper) and then deflate the windbag and remove it. The tire sits on the 2-pronged device and the weight is (nearly completely) off the door.

Another thought is to use some kind of lever and fulcrum to lift the tire and then put the 2-prong device under the tire so you don't have to use the windbag.
 

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2018 159 High Roof gas, BC, Canada
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@GaryBIS, thanks a million for doing this.

I've been contemplating doing this too, though I was thinking of doing it on the driver's side door and then monkeying around with the licence plate somehow. This is because I nearly never open the driver's side rear door but somewhat frequently open the passenger's side.

I'm glad that you're forging ahead and blazing a trail for us (me).

Coincidentally, I'm heading up north and the Dempster too in Sept. and because of your blog and reports of others about how tough the road is on tires, I'm bringing a 2nd spare.

Because I won't have time to build my tire carrier before I leave, I've simply put the 2nd spare into my garage area under my bed.

My 159 is such a large vehicle that even with the spare in the garage, there is plenty of space left for the stuff I need.

A big advantage for having the 2nd spare outside the van is in the case of a frontal collision. The tire is not going to come through the rear doors and hit you. In my case, while I have a fair amount of infrastructure between me and the tire in the garage area, the tire is very dense and is likely to punch through if the speed of the collision is high enough. To counter this, I've got chained the tire to the body of the PM with 800 lb chain I got from Home Depot. I don't know if 800 lbs is the breaking strength or the max recommended strength but it seemed beefy enough to at least slow down the tire such that the other infrastructure in between will likely stop the tire.
 
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I'm adding some storage boxes to my doors so I've been reading all threads regarding mounting stuff to doors...

Since I won't be opening my doors all the way with boxes attached, I ordered the standard Fiat Ducato hinges from eBay and they're being cerakoted in white now. I'm hoping they're stronger because they have 1 pivot instead of 2 which could lead to deflection when weight is added.


I also ordered these door stops but had to hunt on eBay to find the missing rubber seals that the metal straps slide through. Shipping for the rubber seals was more than I paid for both door stops😣


 

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2014, 138WB, High Roof, Gas, SW MT
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I'm adding some storage boxes to my doors so I've been reading all threads regarding mounting stuff to doors...

Since I won't be opening my doors all the way with boxes attached, I ordered the standard Fiat Ducato hinges from eBay and they're being cerakoted in white now. I'm hoping they're stronger because they have 1 pivot instead of 2 which could lead to deflection when weight is added.


I also ordered these door stops but had to hunt on eBay to find the missing rubber seals that the metal straps slide through. Shipping for the rubber seals was more than I paid for both door stops😣


Hi,
That's interesting - please report back on how the install goes and what you think of the other hinge design.

I have to say that the regular door and hinge were surprisingly stiff to me.
I took out the inside trim panel for the door, and with the door open, stepped into the door opening toward the end of the door away from the hinge and then bounced up and down. Neither the door or the hinge showed any sign of distress.

Gary
 

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2014, 138WB, High Roof, Gas, SW MT
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hi,
Just to clarify our logic for a 2nd spare...

Its not so much that I think we will ever actually use the 2nd spare. Even on highways like the Dempster, the odds of having two tire failures is pretty low. But the odds of having one tire failure are not small -- maybe 30% based on our several trips up the Dempster. If you have that first tire failure, and you only have one spare, you then have to make getting that tire fixed your top priority. You basically have to proceed slowly to the closest tire repair place. This may mean going a hundred miles in the wrong direction for highways like the Dempster with very few tire repair shops. When you get to the to the tire repair place, if the tire is not repairable and they don't have your tire size in stock, you will have to wait at least overnight for a tire to be trucked in. This is pretty much what happened to us on the last trip up the Dempster. Having the 2nd spare lets you continue on with your plans and get the broken tire fixed at the next tire shop you come to along your route. At least, that's our thinking :)

Gary
 

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Sounds like a brutal road but that spare should be fine, especially with those glued blocks and the tire supported by the bumper. The upward force on your carrier will likely be very high at times too so hopefully your struts & especially the rear shocks are in good shape. I suppose you could figure out a way to tie or strap it down to the bumper as well.
 

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2018 159 High Roof gas, BC, Canada
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Hi,
Just to clarify our logic for a 2nd spare...

Its not so much that I think we will ever actually use the 2nd spare. Even on highways like the Dempster, the odds of having two tire failures is pretty low. But the odds of having one tire failure are not small -- maybe 30% based on our several trips up the Dempster. If you have that first tire failure, and you only have one spare, you then have to make getting that tire fixed your top priority. You basically have to proceed slowly to the closest tire repair place. This may mean going a hundred miles in the wrong direction for highways like the Dempster with very few tire repair shops. When you get to the to the tire repair place, if the tire is not repairable and they don't have your tire size in stock, you will have to wait at least overnight for a tire to be trucked in. This is pretty much what happened to us on the last trip up the Dempster. Having the 2nd spare lets you continue on with your plans and get the broken tire fixed at the next tire shop you come to along your route. At least, that's our thinking :)

Gary
I'm glad you addressed how long it takes to get the right replacement. Another worry of mine was that it'd take days (maybe a week) to get a spare if I was in a remote place. And I didn't want to be waiting around that long.

Even in my major city, it took days to get an exact tire (OEM Nexen) to the dealer (I bought my tire at a Dodge dealer at the same time as getting the OEM rim and TPMS sensor; the rim took a day, the tire a few days (at least more than 1; I wasn't in a hurry and didn't check back with them often)).

The downside to a tire mounted on the door is that affects stealth. (Let's not make this discussion about stealth as not everyone agrees with this concept.)

Part of my plans for a permanent tire install on the door is to cover it with something that looks like a storage box--so I'm looking forward to what @bahawton is going to do.
 
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I should add few other downsides to storing a tire inside the van other than the dangers of it flying around in a crash. These are downsides that will be noticed every day:

1) the smell! New tires have an acrid smell. Not just a rubber smell, it's much worse. I've rotated out the current front tires out and replaced them with the new smelly spare and the current spare (also "new" in that it's never been used). I put the most sundrenched used tire inside the garage and the other into the spare tire carrier under the van. Happily, the older tire doesn't smell too bad as most of the outgassing seems to have happened already in 3 years. Edit: Running a vent fan helps clear the smell with the constant exchange of air (though I'm not sure it could keep up with the stench of a new tire.)

2) it takes up space (of course)

3) I'm thinking it can bounce around if I go over a bump. I haven't come up with a preferred solution for this yet. I can't simply bolt it to the plywood floor as it's only 3/8 and it's floating, held down only at the OEM D-ring locations. The inertia of the tire would be so powerful that, going over a bump, it'd lift the tire AND the plywood it's attached to and trampoline everything else that's sitting on the floor; possibly rip it right out of the D-ring locations (I'm only guessing this is going to happen as I haven't taken it out on the road yet with the tire in the garage).

I could put a bit bolt through the floor and that should hold it down but I'm running out of time (Sept is around the corner and the Arctic Circle isn't getting any warmer this year) and also the other end of the bolt would be where the underside spare tire and so that will be tricky to work around.

The tire is currently just sitting on the floor and will bounce like everything else will if I go over a bump too hard. I'm thinking this is the lesser of the evils.

These downsides are why a door-mounted 2nd spare is what I'm seriously contemplating.
 
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Once again I am seduced by the simplicity, the logic and the economy of the solution proposed by Gary (from which I have already taken a lot of inspiration in my build).

Having to give up using the winch under the rear of the truck which inexplicably broke, and refusing to invest in a replacement that would not be stronger, I decided to attach the spare tire on the rear door. The right one, to avoid moving the license plate, although the left would be a little more practical.

So thanks to Gary for the informations and the rationale.
Having apprehensions about the resistance of the hinges as well, I can't wait to have his evaluation after the Dempster promenade ! A few years ago then in Alaska I had unfortunately given up walking it for fear of my tires, which were already quite worn ...

Jean-Paul
 

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FWIW, we had a door-hinge mounted spare carrier on our old E350 (not that you should). The saving grace was resting the tire on the bumper. That stopped vibration and relieved some weight. We never had door or hinge problems. Good luck on the Dempster. You're a far braver man than I.
 

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2014, 138WB, High Roof, Gas, SW MT
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Once again I am seduced by the simplicity, the logic and the economy of the solution proposed by Gary (from which I have already taken a lot of inspiration in my build).

Having to give up using the winch under the rear of the truck which inexplicably broke, and refusing to invest in a replacement that would not be stronger, I decided to attach the spare tire on the rear door. The right one, to avoid moving the license plate, although the left would be a little more practical.

So thanks to Gary for the informations and the rationale.
Having apprehensions about the resistance of the hinges as well, I can't wait to have his evaluation after the Dempster promenade ! A few years ago then in Alaska I had unfortunately given up walking it for fear of my tires, which were already quite worn ...

Jean-Paul
The carrier and door appeared to survive the Dempster with no problems, but will take a closer look when we get back home in a couple days.
 
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