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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

Just purchased an EX-L in Smoky Topaz a few weeks ago. Thus far, I've installed a set of Honda roof rails with a set of Yakima grab bars and cross rails and the Honda trailer hitch. It's all pretty easy really if you're mechanically inclined.

Roof Rails

Instructions recommend taping around the middle cover when you slip/twist it on. Excellent idea as without it I'm sure you'd scratch the paint.
I read about some concerns about the existing stripping being not held in well after trimming to fit, but it's not a concern. It's sandwiched in place between the roof and rack. They look and fit very well.

Hitch

I just completed the installation of the Honda hitch, wiring harness, and ATF cooler this weekend. When installing the hitch, I did manage to break two of the clips which hold the rear driver's side panel on. My local dealership parts counter had them in stock and for about a $1.50 I had it all back together. That was the only trouble I ran into.

I really like how the hitch fits and looks when completed. The ground clearance is not nearly as effected as other aftermarket hitches I researched. Trimming of the bumper cover was not a big deal, but does mean you'll have holes there forever if you ever chose to remove the hitch.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Rear hitch install took about 6 hours total. I took my time.

Rack took about 1 to 1.5 hours.
 

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What about the ATF cooler? I'll be installing mine as soon as the weather gets better. Any "lessons learned" to pass along?
 

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Thus far, I've installed a set of Honda roof rails with a set of Yakima grab bars and cross rails
Any pics of those?

Roof Rails

Instructions recommend taping around the middle cover when you slip/twist it on.
Good point. Somebody posted this video in the forums the other day (it is from a dealership, they have good stuff). Oh, and you have to have the right tools too...

YouTube - Episode #196 - 2011+ Honda Odyssey Roof Rack Installation
 

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Discussion Starter #5
What about the ATF cooler? I'll be installing mine as soon as the weather gets better. Any "lessons learned" to pass along?
It really wasn't bad either. I did the job by myself. I was able to get the bumper cover off without issue. The worst part really is removing the existing hose from the barbs. I ended up slitting them with a utility knife (no turning back after that!) and slid them right off. You'll want to be ready with the new hoses. I slipped them on quickly instead of plugging them like the instructions suggest. I had to add about 1/2 qt. of ATF back into the system all said and done, so you'll want to pick some of that up before you start. I stopped at the $tealership parts counter and got what they recommended.
 

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As mentioned above, you'll need the appropriately sized torx bits to complete this. I believe they are T30 (maybe T25), but check on your own to be sure.

I'll snap a few pictures tomorrow in the daylight.
 

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It really wasn't bad either. I did the job by myself. I was able to get the bumper cover off without issue. The worst part really is removing the existing hose from the barbs. I ended up slitting them with a utility knife (no turning back after that!) and slid them right off. You'll want to be ready with the new hoses. I slipped them on quickly instead of plugging them like the instructions suggest. I had to add about 1/2 qt. of ATF back into the system all said and done, so you'll want to pick some of that up before you start. I stopped at the $tealership parts counter and got what they recommended.
Thanks for the feedback. I did the cooler on my '02, it was a piece of cake. Didn't require anything other that removing the old and replacing with the new. I'm assuming you need to remove the headlight to get to the panel so you can cut the notch.

Final question, my plan was to pre-fill the new cooler with fluid, plug the lines on the cooler and those coming from the tranny and do a quick swap of the lines to keep leakage to a minimum. Based on your install, do you think this is doable or is it too tight?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
That sounds like it would work. It's a little tight, but doable I think. The air deflector plastic piece which fits between the body and radiator does need removed for a place to route the two new lines back into the engine compartment.

Pictures this evening.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hitch and Roof Rail Pictures attached
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thanks for the kind words.

I used a combination of three tools. The center cutout was done with a drill bit for the rounded corners (per the instructions) and a 3" abrasive cut-off wheel.

something like this


The left and right cutouts did not fit this very well, so I used a jigsaw with a relatively fine metal cutting blade (more teeth per inch than a wood blade) for a smoother cut. Then finished the edges off (not much really) with a coarse file. All cuts were made from the inside of the bumper cover to help prevent scratching.
 

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Re: Hitch and Roof Rail Pictures attached

Very nice job! Thanks for posting the photos too! Have had the roof rails in my basement for a couple of weeks (got them from dealer who matched the online prices). Can't wait to have some time to get this installed.

Also, thanks for having read up on prior roof-rails threads and addressing the concerns (particularly mine) about the fit and possible looseness of the weatherstrip after pulling them up and re-installing them on the roof. Thanks for the reassurance. If the weatherstrip was loose afterward, I would hate it.

Query: is that the standard Yakima rail-grab? Any issues with the fit?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
No problem. I always like researching things before I purchase, so any info I can provide hopefully benefits people doing the same.

Yes, it's a standard Yakima "railgrab" towers. They fit well. The radius/curve of railgrab does not make perfect contact with the radius/curve of the Honda rail, but per the directions it makes 3 point contact and is solid. I like that they are adjustable versus the Honda crossbars which are fixed. They do make quite a bit of noise at speed (30+ mph). Hopefully a fairing or aerodynamic fin sort of deal will cure it. I've been contemplating just removing them (even before purchasing) when not using them. They're easy enough to remove.

Has anyone tried one of Yakima's windjammers?
Yakima Shop Rack Systems Factory Tracks or Rails WindJammer
 

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Thanks for the pics, the Yakimas look good.

I have a Thule rack on my other people mover and it also has some similar wind noise reduction widgets, but a wind fairing did a better job at the end (of course it costs more too, suckers)
 

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Mind if I ask what air saw you used for the weatherstripping? I have limited tools right now and would need to purchase something to do those cuts. Honda instructions suggested a Snap-On air saw (AT192A) which costs $180 but there are so many other reciprocating saws that are perhaps lighter-duty. Not sure if that would do.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Mind if I ask what air saw you used for the weatherstripping? I have limited tools right now and would need to purchase something to do those cuts. Honda instructions suggested a Snap-On air saw (AT192A) which costs $180 but there are so many other reciprocating saws that are perhaps lighter-duty. Not sure if that would do.
Honestly just about any saw will do the job. The weatherstripping is made from thing metal (looks like steel or SS to me) coated with rubber/plastic. I used the same air powered cut off tool mentioned above. A jigsaw with a metal cuting blade would do the job for sure. In a pinch, I bet a circular saw with carbide tipped blade might even do it. The metal's not very thick, but be careful and make a test cut of two first. If you were careful tin snips might do the job as well.

Do you have an air compressor? The type of saw Honda's recommending is air powered I'd guess, they typically are. They're great for making detailed cuts in thing sheetmetal, but pretty specialized really. A jig saw will do the same job and many others.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thanks for the pics, the Yakimas look good.

I have a Thule rack on my other people mover and it also has some similar wind noise reduction widgets, but a wind fairing did a better job at the end (of course it costs more too, suckers)
It's looking like a fairing is the best route here. Did it effect your fuel economy at all? The darned things are about $70, but the clips/attachment method isn't so easily reproduceable. I've been considering making my own from some ABS plastic sheet.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Also, thanks for having read up on prior roof-rails threads and addressing the concerns (particularly mine) about the fit and possible looseness of the weatherstrip after pulling them up and re-installing them on the roof. Thanks for the reassurance. If the weatherstrip was loose afterward, I would hate it.
Was working on top of the car last night. I just wanted to be clear. The strips are not held down tightly and do move/flex a little. They aren't going to come out (the rack limits the ends) and I have not noticed any noise or vibration. I think a dap of adhesive in the center would keep them down and in place if you're worried about it.
 
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