Installation date: 2/25/99
I’d been wanting a safari rack for a while and had pretty much narrowed the choices down to the Garvin Wilderness Rack and the Surco Safari Rack. I was talking with my friend Todd Rosser of Rosser Jeep and happened to mention I was looking for a safari rack for my XJ, he suggested Warrior Product’s (WP) new XJ rack which Rosser was now carrying. So, I checked it out and liked what I saw. At 45×55″ and 5″ tall, it was slightly smaller than the 45x60x5″ Surco and the 54x60x4″ Garvin rack I was looking at. The Surco is a cheap [price-wise], rust-proof aluminum light duty rack. The Garvin rack is a bolt-together steel rack and is generally considered one of the best safari racks available, along with Con-Ferr, but like the “best” of anything, it’s also one of the most expensive racks. Like the Con-Ferr racks, the Warrior rack is a one-piece welded steel rack, which means it has to be shipped freight and that noticeably increases the shipping price. If at all possible have it shipping to a commercial/business address, it’s much cheaper than having it shipped to a residential address. The main selling points on the WP rack for me were the crossbar flooring and the fact that it was a welded rack, despite the increased shipping costs.
The WP rack arrived well wrapped in a large box along with the mounting kit and instructions. I wasn’t happy to discover that I had to drill holes in the rack for the mounting brackets, but you may have to do that with other racks, I don’t know. Drilling the holes was really no big deal, but it did take a while to get everything test-fitted and marked for drilling. I’d suggest getting a buddy to help you out with the test-fitting and marking as you’ll probably have to hoist the rack onto your roof a few times to get everything lined up right, and the rack is rather awkward for one person to handle.
Each of the gutter mounts are bolted to the rack with 2 bolts and then each mount is held together with 3 bolts. Once the rack is bolted down, it’s on to stay, or until you unbolt it. This is definitely one solid rack. The instructions say to bolt the gutter mounts to the vehicle first and then bolt the rack to the mounts once you get it drilled, but I found it a little easier to bolt the mounts to the rack first, then bolt the whole thing to the Jeep. Eventually I plan to mount some lights and a Hi-Lift jack on the rack.
The safari rack has optional mounts for a Hi-Lift, lights, and a shovel or ax. In addition to the standard XJ safari rack, WP also makes a 2-piece sport rack and jaboree-style racks and full roof racks for CJ/YJ/TJ’s, along with lift shackles, a shackle reversal kit, and a full line of diamond plate protection for CJ/YJ/TJ’s.
For more information, contact:
Warrior Products, Inc.
11100 SW Industrial Way
Tualatin, OR 97062
Phone: (503) 691-8915
Toll Free: (888) 220-6861
Fax: (503) 692-0364