Mantec Carrier on a ST - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old February 9th, 2007, 12:36 PM
mgrgpg
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Mark
1989 D110
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Long Island, NY
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Mantec Carrier on a ST

Looking at installing a Mantec Tire Carrier on a ST. Has anyone done this? Any issues? I have the fiberglass top on now, and it looks like it will interfere with the top bracket. How did you guys locate the bottom holes on the cross member?

Thanks,
Mark
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  #2  
Old February 12th, 2007, 09:20 AM
mgrgpg
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Mark
1989 D110
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Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Long Island, NY
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No one in this group has put a Mantec tire carrier on a Soft Top?

Thanks,
Mark
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  #3  
Old February 12th, 2007, 08:11 PM
twiftwix
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Tim F.
1997 Defender 90 ST
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah USA
Posts: 20
Mantec Carrier

Hi Mark--

Yeah, I've put a Mantec on my Soft Top.

My first advice is to go ahead and do it; it's a much better set-up and I've liked mine so much better.

(My truck is in the shop right now, so I can't run out and look at it and I'm going off of memory [I put mine on about 3-1/2 years ago].)

The issues I can recall are:

  • The Mantec doesn't fit with the stock third brake light, so you either have to remove it altogether (which is what I did; I always hated that thing) or you could probably rebend the tubing and change the angle of the mounts a little and make it work with the Mantec.
  • The bottom bolt holes were fine; they fit the bolt pattern for the stock carrier (I'm almost sure that's right, but I may be remembering wrong). It was the top bolt holes that were the issue. You have to make new ones and they're close enough to the old ones that you have to reinforce them somehow (I used a 1/4" blanking plate).
  • The sliding assembly thing you attach to the tailgate (I'm not sure of the official name) is meant to fit the rear door of a hardtop. Our tailgate door is indented, so you have to put a spacer in there. I just used a 1" or so thick chunk of billet aluminum with holes drilled in it.
  • The Bestop soft top (if you have one) has a little cut out thing to give it clearance over the top bracket for the stock carrier. When you get the Mantec on it looks kind of weird. You can either live with it (it's probably not that big of deal, but I'm picky), or get your local upholstery guy to mend/fix it for you.
  • After you get the Mantec on, you end up with a lot of extra bolt holes in your tailgate. You can fill most of them with a bunch of 10mm stainless bolts with nyloc washers (it even makes it look kinda cool and industrial). Some of the bigger holes you can get taken care of with a trip to the hardware store for blanking plugs and oddball fittings and stuff. You just kinda have to wing it.
Hope that helps a little. I don't have a fiberglass top, so I don't know how it would fit with the Mantec. (It kind of sounds to me like you're thinking the Mantec sits higher than it does, though, so maybe the top would be okay.)

I won't have my truck back for at least a week or so. But if you want me to take a look at something after that and tell you how it looks or something, let me know.

Good luck,

Tim F.
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  #4  
Old February 13th, 2007, 06:44 AM
mgrgpg
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Mark
1989 D110
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Location: Long Island, NY
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Thanks for the info - I have the carrier now, and see an issue with the fiberglass top, so I will make a 1/4" spacer to bump the top and bottom brackets out to clear it. Thanks for the heads up on the door, did not notice that last night, was just planning on putting the same 1/4" spacer in there also.

Still not positive about the bottom bracket hole location - I do not see any existing holes there, just want to make sure I am not too high or low.

Mark
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  #5  
Old February 13th, 2007, 11:24 AM
twiftwix
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Tim F.
1997 Defender 90 ST
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah USA
Posts: 20
Hi Mark--

Just one more thing I thought of after I posted last night (about the third brake light). We have to do annual safety inspection out here. So every year I have to peel off the Mantec and put the brake light back on to get it through inspection, and then reassemble everything the way I want it afterwards. It's kind of a pain. (I have this bright idea about maybe putting the light on a stalk and welding it to the Mantec, but I've never got around to doing anything about it.) I just thought I'd mention it, in case it's an issue for you.

Maybe I'm remembering wrong about the bolt holes (and maybe I should shut up until I know what I'm talking about). There's a guy who parks his D-90 at an office building down the road from me. I'll see if he drove it to work today and if I can sneak a peak at it and refresh my memory when I'm out running errands later on, and then let you know.

Cheers,

Tim F.
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  #6  
Old February 13th, 2007, 12:06 PM
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Brian B
94 ST
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Location: Denton,TX
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The third brake light assembly is not required in all states. I removed mine and never had a problem in Texas, but found documentation just in case I need to prove a point.
http://www.txdps.state.tx.us/vi/insp...ejectsubmit=Go
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  #7  
Old February 13th, 2007, 05:04 PM
twiftwix
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Tim F.
1997 Defender 90 ST
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Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah USA
Posts: 20
Pictures

Hi Mark--

Oops. Everything I told you about the bolt holes was wrong. Sorry about that. (Jeez I'm getting old; I guess my memory is another thing that doesn't work right anymore.)

But the good news is, my mechanic called and I had to run down to his shop and take him a check so he can buy a bunch of parts. So I snapped you some pictures while I was down there.

These pictures are kind of self-explanatory, and should get you what you need to know I think. If you can't see what you need in them, let me know and I'll explain anything I can.

What controls the top-to-bottom placement on mine is actually the top of the rail for the soft top. My top bracket is sitting touching the top of the rail. If you don't have those rails on your truck, or if you put a spacer in so that it would clear the rail, you could position your carrier lower than I have (which might help with clearance for your fiberglass top). The other thing is, you do in fact need to drill three holes through the rear crossmember (my memory was just wrong about that). You can see from the picture how I did mine. They're in a good spot, I looked and there isn't anything on the inside that gets in the way. You're only drilling through one layer of 1/4" plate steel, so that's not bad.

I also took a picture of the spacer I put on the tailgate. I remember now that the thickness of it is kind of critical; the thickness of the spacer is what controls whether the carrier is parallel to the rear door. You can either aim a little low on the thickness and then adjust it with shims or washers, or aim a little high and then adjust it with a grinder (that's what I did).

Hope that helps.

Cheers,

Tim F.
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  #8  
Old February 14th, 2007, 10:03 AM
mgrgpg
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Mark
1989 D110
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Tim,

Thanks for the pictures and information. I figured I would work from the top rail - level it to the door and then the bottom bracket can get located so everything is square.

Mark
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