Mounting L-Tracks to walls, over liner, below windows in '04 144'' High Roof

135RECORDS

New member
Code:
Mounting L-Tracks to walls, over liner, below windows in '04 144'' High Roof
I have a 144'' high roof passenger van. I have two L-tracks on the floor. What I want to do is add L-tracks underneath the windows, on top of the liner, and possibly the ceilings as well.

I found a couple helpful threads but couldn't find the right information regarding the positions of the metal behind the liner, where its best secure drill into...also are sheet metal screws the best way to go?

Please advise!
 

Aqua Puttana

Poly - Thread Finder
First let me extend you a hale and hearty welcome to the forum. welcome2.gif

I presume you have a 140 WB if you have a 2004, but if it has OEM L-track on the floor that is an NCV3 feature so 144 would be correct.

If you use the blue bar above to advance search in the RV and Conversion Write-ups I believe that you will find some helpful pictures. I think that Graphic Dave D_Bertko has installed it all over.

If you use enough sheet metal screws I personally believe that it is a great way to fasten the L-track. One of the nice design features of L-track is that because it is so rigid it transfers load to other fasteners and reduces point loading. Another feature is that it will not fail catastrophically like a single point load ring can. The failure mode will be more to pop some fasteners and distort the track, not pull the track off completely.

Others might prefer rivet nut style fasteners. They are fine too, but more expensive and more work to install properly.

Here's a couple pictures I saved for reference. The first picture has some L-track installed.

49032176_EVpPp-L.jpg

ec9bInsideView.jpg

Good luck. vic

Code:
Mounting L-Tracks to walls, over liner, below windows in '04 144'' High Roof
I have a 144'' high roof passenger van. I have two L-tracks on the floor. What I want to do is add L-tracks underneath the windows, on top of the liner, and possibly the ceilings as well.

I found a couple helpful threads but couldn't find the right information regarding the positions of the metal behind the liner, where its best secure drill into...also are sheet metal screws the best way to go?

Please advise!
 
Last edited:

d_bertko

New member
135Records,

My floor L track is through bolted with stainless spreader washers.

My wall track uses rivnuts every 4" as possible.

The ceiling track has rivnuts where the ribs intersect the runs. To get additional mounts I used L-brackets at the ribs (rivnut'd) that screw to 2x wood between the ribs. The Sprinter roof is not spec'd for much load so I appreciated the ability of the substantial L-track to distribute the load. But all my overhead bins are filled with light gear anyway.

It never occurred to me to use sheet metal screws for the L-track. Figured the L-track fittings are spec'd for several thousand pounds and hoped the rivnut distribution would rival that. The sheet metal screws must be 1/4 as strong against pull-out.

I was a newbie at this first diy rv so figured my labor was free and I'd be as conservative as economically feasible. All of my bed support cantilevers transfer most of the load from wall to floor. My bed atv ramps are rated for about a ton. Only had the two of us in mind when I designed it but you never know...

Seriously, floors in houses are spec'd several times beyond any safety factor---floor deflections make folks uneasy. A rock-solid bed adds something to the comfort factor.

I'll make the next one even more crash-worthy after seeing all the diy rear seating concerns.

Dan
 

Aqua Puttana

Poly - Thread Finder
... The sheet metal screws must be 1/4 as strong against pull-out.

...Dan
That may be, but one of the beautiful things about the L-track is that because it is so rigid the fasteners see mostly shear stress. Sheet metal screws are great for shear.

Have you noticed the relatively small number of fasteners that MB uses on the OEM NCV3 L-track? Not many at all compared to what most people would install.

You can count them here.

(It's 3 each per 5 foot length. :shhh: )

L-track NCV3.jpg
https://sprinter-source.com/forums/showthread.php?t=8822

Maybe we just don't need as many fasteners as we think? :idunno:
(The pre-drilled logistical track is likely spec'd to aviation service.)

As for load attachment, it all depends upon your comfort level and application. With L-track you have the ability to use multiple tie points. You don't need to depend upon just one or two tie points as you do with the inconvenient limited number/location of OEM load rings.

Just my opinion. vic
 
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pfflyer

Well-known member
Graphite Dave. I think it was you that said they wish they used a thermal break between the body and the 80/20. How much of a thermal break is neccessary and is it that noticable? Thermal break in the floor only or both the floor and walls? if it wasnt Ghaphite Dave it may have been D Bertko. Both two good builds I have been following.
 

135RECORDS

New member
Vic, Dan,
Thanks for the great responses. I have found some great pictures and great designs. I really like the L-tracks and their versatility. My Sprinter is a passenger van with windows on both sides. So I was really hoping to see where the best places to mount the L-tracks would be. After seeing some more pictures from your build Dan, it looks like I am going to go a similar route and mount them below as well as above the window lines. I have an air conditioning unit in the ceiling that I plan to keep, so i will have to work with its width to place the L-tracks in the ceiling. Thanks again for your responses!

-Mick
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
I did not put a thermal break between the 80/20 and the Sprinter body. I have fully insulated every cavity in the Sprinter but on cold nights I can touch the 80/20 and the temperature of the 80/20 is close to the outside temperature. The cold simply bypasses all the insulation. Seems aluminum is a good conductor! All that would be required is a piece of wood or plywood so you do not have metal to metal contact between Sprinter and framing. Two bolts. One through the wood to the Sprinter and one through the same piece of wood to the 80/20.
 

tigernassau

New member
That may be, but one of the beautiful things about the L-track is that because it is so rigid the fasteners see mostly shear stress. Sheet metal screws are great for shear.

Have you noticed the relatively small number of fasteners that MB uses on the OEM NCV3 L-track? Not many at all compared to what most people would install.
@aqua - was wondering where to buy L-track - does MB source it ? better from somewhere else ?

ps: what kind of insulation is that tan stuff ?
 

Aqua Puttana

Poly - Thread Finder
@aqua - was wondering where to buy L-track - does MB source it ? better from somewhere else ?
I think that MB would only supply the 5 foot long L-track which is OEM in the NCV3 models. The price would likely be better from some other source.

I've used Cargo Equipment. Amazon.com lists some L-track parts.

http://www.cargoequipmentcorp.com/System-Track-and-Floor-Plates-s/93.htm

My advice, not that you asked for it...
When you order the L-track get it pre-drilled and just use the holes that line up in the position you select. You don't need to use all the holes for proper support. As I said previously, MB uses 3 each fasteners for their 5' lengths. Drilling and countersinking my own track was a bit of a pain in the arse and in my opinion, not worth the effort.

ps: what kind of insulation is that tan stuff ?
:idunno::idunno:

All the pictures I posted above were grabs from various internet sites. None of them are from my vehicle.

Have fun. vic
 

d_bertko

New member
Vic is right---it's ok to skip occasional pre-drilled holes as convenient.

And completely agree that factory countersinks are worth it. I had Cargo Equipment add it to my flangeless flavor of floor track. Upcharge was maybe $2/stick. Nice folks, willing to customize.

I'll repeat that I did not do engineering of what loads my L-track would experience---just did the best securement I could with my free labor. Figured if I came up with a heavy load--like a hammock from the ceiling tracks--it could probably stand the experiment.

Dan
 

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