This Review and How To Guide is brought to you by Intents Offroad.
A good roof rack for your 4x4 needs to balance a variety of key features:
It must be durable, and up to the rigours of off-road life, It needs to offer enough space to carry a wide range of different accessories and gear in a wide range of ways, and it needs to do this without adding too much weight to your vehicle or generating a whole heap of road noise.
It’s a big ask really, so can the Rola Titan Tray offer a setup that can ace all these requirements? Alex from Intents Offroad installs the system on his Patrol and takes a look.
What is the Rola Titan Tray?
The Rola Titan flat tray system is a modular roof-rack system that allows for a wide range of fit-outs. There are quite a few different accessory holders available, and each one can be mounted to the tray in multiple ways. This gives you huge flexibility in how you use the tray and also increases roll-over protection by letting you balance heavy loads over your whole roof.
Alex is going to fit a few such accessories to his setup. Besides the roof tray and associated mounting gear, he has a jerry can holder, a gas bottle holder, an LED light bar mounting system, awning mounting brackets and a recovery track mounting system.
Starting with the rack tray, in this case, a 2 x 1.2m tray, Alex explains that you can either run the tray as a simple flat installation or add side and end rails in order to convert it into more of a basket-type arrangement. Because the system is modular, you can install some or all of the additional rails - depending, of course, on your own needs.
What sort of accessories can you use?
It’s time to look at the modular accessory holders in a bit more detail, so Alex checks out the Jerry can holder first. The holder fits cans up to 185mm wide, and its unique design allows for vertical or horizontal transportation of either metal or plastic jerry cans. It includes an insulated base to prevent container damage due to vibration, and the built-in cast aluminium ratchet tie-down provides added security.
Next up is the Gas bottle holder. Just like the Jerry can holder, this also features an insulation pad on the base to prevent damage to the bottle. The built-in ratchet strap secures the bottle over the top, using a special hoop, and allows you to carry bottles up to 4kg making it a perfect accessory for anyone who has a big camp to feed and who likes their campsite BBQs.
Alex then briefly checks out the heavy-duty ratchet tie-downs and their accompanying eye-bolts which will come in handy in a huge variety of ways. The tray itself is pretty simple to assemble using basic hand tools, and although he breezes through the installation and assembly, Alex does note a little later on that it would be worthwhile using a little Loctite or other similar assembly compounds in order to prevent any bolts and fasteners from coming loose due to vibrations on and off-road.
Once assembled and mounted on a Rola roof rack system, Alex sets out to camp, with two mates and a whole load of gear. 40 litres of water in two separate jerry cans, a gas bottle, the recovery treads, a high-lift jack, three swags and of course, three chairs.
How did the Rola Titan tray hold up?
The jerry cans are securely mounted and thanks to the tie-downs and the adjustable base plates, there are a lot of ways you could mount them. In the future, Alex intends to add a few more brackets and carry 60 litres of extra fuel - making these mounts a great option for anyone who has to face a long stretch of driving away from the nearest fuel station.
Similarly, the gas bottle holder is also really handy to have, and thanks to the purpose-built hoop, the strap of the tie-down isn’t left to rub against the bottle’s carry handle. The recommended bottle size limit is 4kg, but Alex gets away with carrying a slightly larger bottle with no trouble at all.
The high-lift jack is held onto the rear of the tray with two heavy-duty brackets - that also keep the handle secure. Alex would have preferred to mount his jack with the foot facing upwards; however, the jack mounts in such a way that the brackets also secure the handle. No matter though, he simply offset the jack so that the foot had enough clearance.
The recovery treads are held securely in place with their dedicated tie-downs, which attach to a rail and hold the treads to the side of the tray. Alex also slips a bike-lock through the tread’s handles, and around the roof tray for some added security and peace of mind.
Around the front of the tray, Alex has mounted an LED light bar, which bolts easily up thanks to the specially designed mounting brackets. Finally, he has mounted an awning along one side of his Rola tray - it too is held in place with purpose-built brackets.
All of the brackets, trays and accessory holders are mounted using channel fasteners which can be slid around a whole host of channels that run the entire way around the edge of the tray, as well as on the tops and sides of the front, rear and sidebars, and all over the top of the tray - letting you bolt your accessories wherever you see fit. These neat fasteners make it easy to install modules without needing to hold the back of the fastener - helping greatly with solo assembly.
There isn’t much noticeable wind noise overall, but Alex might not have tightened a couple of the assembly bolts to spec, meaning he has a few creaks and rattles - always keep your tools on hand to tighten anything that might be worked loose over rough terrain or apply a little Loctite or similar to prevent it from happening in the first place. Future plans include the aforementioned additional jerry can trays, and perhaps a work lamp - mounted on the rear of the tray.
Overall impressions of the Rola Titan Tray?
Ever modest, Alex’ overall impression of the Rola Titan roof tray is that it’s “...A pretty handy setup.”
It is very configurable, meaning that you can outfit your roof tray setup however you need it for each trip you take - adding, removing or relocating components to suit your cargo.
With a wide range of accessories available from Supercheap Auto, you can find the perfect mounting hardware for whatever you want to take on your next adventure.
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