Automotive-Woodworking puzzle...

Howdy,
I am facing a conceptually simple woodworking problem but a sensible method eludes me...
I bought a Toyota Sienna minivan. To my surprise, they do not make available a cargo barrier that will hold luggage in the rear of the van in the event of an accident. So, in the event of a crash, I may be protected by my airbag, until I am crushed from behind by my luggage flying at me at the closing speed of the crash...
In any case, I want to make some sort of barrier.
Conceptually, here's what I want to do:
I will put the van through my bandsaw cross wise just in front of the rear luggage area. Then, I will trace the interior contour onto 1" plywood. Next, I will cut the ply so that it is an easy slipfit into the contour. I will then bandsaw out the interior of the plywood leaving a form fit "frame" of about 3". Because there are thick structural members in the roof line at that point, the wooden frame could not force itself past that point of the van. Inside that frame, I will install nylon mesh to make my luggage barrier. Obviously, I could pop the entire thing out of the van when I wanted to...
As I said, "simple concept."
But how do I do that sort of thing in fact? Were the contour dimensions just a few inches, I could use the sort of tool that one uses to copy moldings etc. but this thing is many feet, and for now, I can't think of a way to "copy" the interior contour of the van to the plywood, or to a drawing.
How should I approach this?
Sincere thanks,
--
Kenneth

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On Sat, 24 Apr 2004 11:55:48 -0400, Kenneth

saaayyyy, could I borrow your bansaw this weekend? I have this school bus I wanna put a poptop on.....

map it. make a sheet of cardboard or masonite or something that fits easily inside (3 or 4" gaps are fine) and temporarily mount it in the plane you want to map. make yourself a pointer- a stick a couple of feet long with a rounded point on it. choose a resolution for your map- it can be variable, tighter in curves, looser for straighter sections. place the pointer with the point touching the line you're mapping and the body laying flat on the temp surface. trace around the pointer with a pencil, increment the point, repeat, repeat.....
once you've made it all of the way around, pull your masonite template and lay it flat on top of your final material and repeat the process- this time tracing around the point onto the finish material as you increment the body of the pointer.
you'll need to fair the curve a bit when you're done, but it's possible to get very nice results this way.
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On Sat, 24 Apr 2004 09:18:39 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@igetenoughspamalreadythanks.com wrote:

Hey Bridger,
You can borrow my bandsaw any time (...and, it has a hell of a throat!)
Very sincere thanks for your excellent suggestion,
--
Kenneth

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<snip>
OR, just go out and buy a cargo bulkhead. Most I see these days are made of clear plexiglass, lexan or some type of clear material. It doesn't need to touch all sides, just close enough to keep all bulky objects from flying into your head. Here are a few different types:
http://www.clearviewpartitions.com / http://www.chameleon2000.com/homepage.html http://www.americanvanequipment.com/catalog/categoryindex.cfm?category=Security%20Partitions&subcategory=Partitions
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snip

Take a photo of the section as square on as possible. Include something with known dimensions, such as a yardstick. Get a large print of the photo. Obtain an enlarging copy projector. Tape a large sheet of paper to a wall and project the photo onto it. Fiddle with the enlargment until the object with known dimensions is the correct size. Trace the contour. Test with cardboard before commiting the contour to plywood.
LD
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I have a minivan. It has a couple tie-down locations in the back. It is easy to put a cargo strap over suitcases or whatever to be sure that it will not move in transport.
The strap is probably a lot stronger than your net.
Dick

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