In this project we install a rear door platform to our Ford Transit. It offers additional cargo-carrying capacity for bikes, Rotopax Gas Can, skis/snowboards, etc. It is versatile, allows to be customized to our needs and it’s easy to swap or reconfigure accessories with season’s change. We especially look forward to having two extra bike mounts outside the van, it’s useful when shuttling with friends or to carry our bikes around when they’re dirty. Let’s get to work!
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2 or 3 hours
- Ratchet with 13mm Socket
- 9/16 Box Wrench or Socket
- 7/32 Hex Allen Key (provided)
- Power Drill with 3/16″ and 27/64″ drill bits
- Deburring Tool (or countersink bit)
- A helping hand!
Good to Know
We found that installing the FVC Rear Door Platform is slightly more challenging than installing the FVC Roof Rack or the FVC Nudge Bar. It can still be done by the average DIYer, but it requires some manipulation in order to get the brackets and platform to fit and align correctly (as described later in the installation steps).
Mounting Holes and Surface
The FVC rear door platform is comprised of 1/2″ holes, 3/8″ holes, and 1/2″ x 1.5″ slotted holes. The mounting surface measures 55.25″ tall x 19.625″ wide:
Be aware that with the Rear Door Platform, you loose the ability to open the rear passenger door all the way up to the van body (253°). And the magnetic bumpers won’t help anymore, so be careful when opening the door past 90 degrees. Without any accessories mounted to the platform, here is the maximum opening we are getting:
1. Bottom Hinge Bracket (Passenger Side)
1.1. Make alignment marks using a fine sharpie (we will use these lines to reinstall the hinge):
1.2. Remove the 3 factory bolts from the bottom hinge with a 13mm socket:
1.3. Ask your helping hand to support the door during the next steps. No need to support the full weight of the door, it’s only to help aligning the brackets and to prevent the door from moving if it’s windy…
1.4. Partially close the hinge, slide the P2 hinge bracket over the hinge and locate it so it doesn’t interfere with the surrounding structure. Check the alignment marks and tighten the 3 factory bolts:
1.5. Slowly close the door and check the clearance between the P2 bracket and the surrounding structure. If something’s off, fine-tune the bracket position as needed.
2. Top Hinge Bracket (Passenger Side)
Repeat the same procedure as Step 1, but for the P1 top hinge bracket:
3. Remove the interior door panel (Passenger Side)
3.1. The door panel is held by push-pins around the edges. Pull on the edges to disengage them:
3.2. Slowly peel back the vapor barrier. Start with the top right corner and peel back about half way:
4. Drill the exterior hole
4.1. Align the exterior drill template with the edge of the door and edge of sheet metal under the window (or window space) and mark the drill hole:
4.2. Drill a pilot hole (3/16″), then enlarge to final size (27/64″):
4.3. Deburr the hole and smooth the edge with sanding paper:
5. Drill the inside hole
5.1. Align the interior drill template as shown (make sure the template makes full contact and wrap around the door):
5.2. Drill a pilot hole (3/16″), then enlarge to final size (27/64″):
5.3. Deburr the hole and smooth the edge:
5.4. Apply rust inhibitor to the bare edges of both the interior and exterior holes. Isabelle sprayed some Rust-Oleum in a plastic jar and applied it with a brush (it’s less messy this way!):
6. Bolt the door platform (Exterior)
6.1. Ask your helper to hold and align the holes of the platform/brackets. Good job Mr. Helper!
6.2. Loosely bolt the platform (3/8″ x 1″ flanged hex screws with 3/8″ flanged locknuts) to the top and bottom hinge brackets:
6.3. Insert the hardware (3/8″ x 1.5″ flanged hex screw with 3/8″ sealing washer) into the exterior hole:
7. Bolt the door platform (inside)
Align the door backer with the exterior hole’s bolt (hole drilled at step 4) and with the inside hole (hole drilled at step 5). Insert the hardware (3/8 x 1.25 button head screw with oversized washer) into the inside hole and tighten:
Note: Getting the door backer to fit in there is quite challenging, to say the least. We almost gave up but it finally went in with some stubbornness…
8. Tighten All Bolts
Now that all the hardware is in place, tighten everything: top bracket (2 bolts), bottom bracket (2 bolts), exterior bolt (1 bolt), interior bolt (1 bolt). And while you’re at it, double-check that you tightened the factory hinge brackets (6 bolts total with13mm socket).
9. Attach the lower frame brace
Almost done! All that remains is to install the lower frame brace with two bolts:
10. That’s it!
You’re done! Good work 🙂
Pretty much anything can be mounted to the rear door platform. Here are accessories commonly seen on cargo carrier:
To mount a 1UP bike tray horizontally, ski rack, or whatever comes to your mind!
A Rotopax (red = gas, yellow = diesel) paired with a mounting kit is the ultimate solution to carry fuel on an adventure!
DMOS Compact Delta Shovel with Mount. Telescoping handle (up to 33″) to dig while standing up.
Maxtrax Recovery Boards
We learned the hard way these can be a life saver 🙂 Don’t forget the Mounting Pin Set.
On Second Thought…
As mentioned in the “Good to know” section, installing the rear door platform is a bit more challenging than the others accessories we previously installed. But it works!
Long Term Review
Wait for it!