Camp and Carry: PrinSu Design Studio Toprac [Video]
If you’ve followed our 2008 Toyota Tacoma build over the years, you’ve likely seen the truck progress from a more crawler-centric build into the expedition one that it is today. As more long distance trips become the norm, and camping becomes a common occurrence, we’ve adapted the truck to better fit our needs. Just before taking off for our 5,000-mile round-trip adventure to Moab, Utah, for the annual Easter Jeep Safari, we installed a V Series bed cover from A.R.E. Since we opted for the roof mounted track system, we also had room to expand our gear holding capabilities.
To take full advantage of our new bed cover, we picked up a Toprac from PrinSu Design Studio. Unlike other bulky steel roof racks on the market, PrinSu offers low-profile aluminum racks that are functional and stylish. For our Tacoma’s five-foot bed, something as simple as a roof rack means we can haul more toys and gear with us. While we walk you through the install in the video above, we’re breaking down the Toprac upgrade in the article below.
Installing the Toprac
Our Tacoma’s Toprac came with all the necessary hardware and mounting feet. We opted for the black textured finish for the side rails and black anodized finish for the six crossbars.
The crossbars offer two channels on the top and one per side, giving you plenty of options to mount accessories. These bolt to the 3/16-inch 5052 laser-cut aluminum side rails, making for an extremely rigid, yet lightweight, setup.
To secure the rack to the A.R.E. top, PrinSu sends threaded rail inserts that simply slide into the channels. It uses a total of eight bolts (four mounting feet) to attach to the roof.
Taking a little over an hour to install, the Toprac is an easy bolt-on upgrade. For when we’re not using our tent, we typically keep the provided loop attachment points up top to secure longer items that our short bed won’t accommodate.
Installing the Tent
For when we want to haul around our Cascadia Vehicle Tent, we simply attach PrinSu’s low-profile mounting feet. These bolt to the crossbars and can be added with the rack on the truck by simply removing the crossbar bolts on one side. While installing the tent on the roof is a two-person job, bolting it up only takes around 15 minutes.
Given the Toprac’s extremely low-profile design, we’ve noticed very little wind noise. However, attaching the sizable tent to the roof doesn’t make for a great aerodynamic upgrade. It’s definitely a trade-off for convenience.
For the price and quality of the rack, we’re extremely happy. The fact that we can now quickly and easily set up camp in remote places is wonderful. On a more practical front, having a place to secure larger items like our bikes has been great. Even making a quick lumber run is now much easier.