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Stainless Steel
All fasteners used on System One equipment are made from 18-8 stainless steel. We spend a lot of extra money on these fasteners but we don’t want to see any rust running down our racks no matter how old they are. Galvanized fasteners can resist rust well for years but where the galvanized coating is broken by wrenches, lock washers or nuts run tight on their own threads, they start to rust. At that point there’s no turning back. Our fasteners are all in inch (not metric) sizes and many of our nuts have self locking nylon inserts.
Extension Beams are supplied on Contractor Rigs to cantilever the front most and rear most crossmembers out beyond the mounting brackets. The cantilevered section of the rack allows transport of larger, more flexible cargo such as thin wall tubing, molding and siding. Their height of 5 ½” is what provides the strength for the high weight carrying capacity out over the cab area. There are 7 ¼” recessed grooves extruded into the beams to accept the colored vinyl inserts provided. The colored inserts sit below the surface of the extrusion and so are protected from scrapes and scratches. The horizontal mounting flange of the extension beams is one third of an inch in thickness and is where all crossmembers are mounted as well as accessories such as the tall side stop.
Color inserts are available with all racks to match or accent your vehicle or company colors. There are 66 different colors available. You can select a color in one of three ways. If you provide the color code of your truck when you order, we can find the closest match from among the available colors and include it with your order. The colors can be installed after the rack is built so, if you would prefer to make the selection yourself, we will include a chart of the actual colors with a certificate to return your selection in the enclosed envelope. Finally, a third method is to select from our online color samples but be aware that color monitors often don’t represent colors accurately. The color inserts are made of high quality 2 mil vinyl from Avery graphics and rated extremely high in UV resistance.
The Work Winch® is the most universal and easiest to use tie-down system ever made and is an important reason why many contractors buy System One racks in the first place. With this one piece of equipment, all cargo tie down problems and challenges are solved. All the searching for and untangling of ropes and bungees is solved. Safety issues are solved. The work winch with its operating handle is always right there and ready for use -- just lift the pawl and pull out as much strap as you need. Throw the hook end of the strap over the load and hook it to the under side of the crossmember. Take up the slack with the hand wheel and tighten with the handle. Constructed of aluminum alloy and stainless steel with a PVC bearing, it is the only rust-free tie-down system made and has a nearly unlimited lifespan. This is not a bolted-on aftermarket accessory, but an integral part of a System One I.T.S. series ladder rack.
The Contractor Rig’s cantilevered rear crossmember keeps ladders and other cargo from denting and scratching the rear gutter and roof of a van. Although it doesn’t extend quite to the rear gutter, it makes it very difficult or impossible to contact the rear of the van while loading ladders and other items. In normal loading a ladder would be at least 6” away from the area, only if it were near vertical could it touch the van.
Recessed T-slotsRecessed T-slots located throughout the rack are designed for use with standard 5/16” carriage bolts to accommodate various accessories.
The Ladder Glide® insert is extruded from PVC and it is installed on the rear T-slot of the rear crossmember. It protrudes upward about a quarter of an inch and then wraps around the rear upper edge of the crossmember. It is a simple, effective solution to 2 problems. First, it allows ladders and other long items to literally glide onto the rack. Ladders feel like they’re on rollers while sliding against the PVC. Second, the Ladder Glide® insert isolates ladders and other cargo from the rack, protecting them from wear. They are extremely durable and since the introduction of the Ladder Glide® insert in 1998, we have had no calls to replace worn out inserts.
All structural components of System One racks are made from 6000 series extruded aluminum alloy. Aluminum is one third the weight of steel and provides a superior strength-to-weight ratio over steel. It is the material of choice for the majority of the transportation industry.

Wide profile extrusions are important. Capacities are greatly increased with tall and wide cross sections. This is why System One racks are so strong. The fact that the rack is aluminum, and not steel, means that you get a lighter van so more of the van’s available GVWR can be used for carrying cargo. The benefits of installing a high strength, rust-free ladder rack that delivers better gas mileage are undeniably clear.
I.T.S. (Integrated
Tie-down System)
All of the System One van racks are of the I.T.S. integrated tie-down series. This means that incorporated into their mounting brackets is the frame work that allows the moving parts of the work winches to be installed. Part of the van bracket is a brace containing 2 7/8” diameter holes which can be used as an anchor point for work winch hooks. Van racks (contractor and utility rigs) usually utilize 2 pairs of mounting brackets but a third, middle pair is also common. The clip that clamps against the bottom of the rain gutter of the van is made of 1/8” stainless steel and it is secured by ¼ X 1 ½” SS and ¼” SS nuts with nylon lock inserts.
Van Ladder Racks - Features