A vehicle I built sitting atop a vehicle I’m building. Poetic, no?

Even with the euphoria of surviving vehicular lobotomy, driving around without a rear wall/window in winter quickly got cold and old. So I set about closing off the glasshouse, starting from the top. Here’s a close up of the corners of the window frame before I started:

Closing off the space between the crossbar and the roof was one of the trickiest parts of the entire build. Flashback to the roof cut itself: for the final trim I projected a construction laser from below, then marked and cut through the two layers of original sheetmetal one at a time. It was actually a slightly curved cut relative to the roof plane since I was projecting a straight laser line at a 12° angle onto a curved roof.

For the close-off panel, I first rough cut a panel that was 1-2mm taller than the roofline. After grinding off several points along the top to be flush with the roof, I tack welded the panel in place. Then I went back and trimmed the entire length of the panel to follow the roof profile, before welding the whole seam.


Was rushing so I didn’t take many pics of the close-off for the sides of the window and pillar, but this sums it up.


At this point the window would just be a stopgap, so I used the laser cutter at work to cut a piece of tinted acrylic to shape, and mounted it to the inside of the frame with pressure sensitive adhesive tape. Figured I could switch to polycarbonate as a more permanent (and expensive!) solution down the road.

Also wired up a new CHMSL (center high mounted stop light or third brake light) so at least I’d be legal from a lighting perspective, if nothing else. Not a big fan of the giant bicycle light look, so this would also be temporary.


And now for the killer app - lockable truck bed bicycle fork clamps. I was originally planning to mount these below the window, but with the bed being only ~4' long, the bike’s rear wheel wouldn’t fit within the bed!

The two fork clamps also double up as mounting points for a sheet material carrying frame that I fashioned from 80/20 channel. This is right after I got home from Ikea with BILLY in the back:


Next couple of installments - closing off the bed, which took waayyy longer than anticipated...