When I bought my Honda Civic Hybrid, I lost much of the cargo carrying capacity I had while owning a 95 Geo Metro and 91 Honda Accord. I decided to get a new roof rack but found out that it would cost around $400. While searching the web, I stumbled upon some instructables on homemade roof racks and that gave me the idea for this. Luckily for me I already had an old "BIC" brand (universal) roof rack which I had been using with my 91 Honda Accord but which could not be attached on my civic due to the different roof configuration.
You may be able to find a rack like this cheap on Craigslist or other classifieds site.
I had to remove the old attaching gear and find a way to keep the rack on my civic roof. I used a couple (one for each cross member) of ratchet straps that cost 2 bucks a piece. I did not want to buy expensive straps as this was a trial. Now that I know it works, I will replace these with good quality straps.
Here are the steps.
Pliers, Drill plus 3/16" drill bit
Universal roof rack, 2 Ratchet Tie down Straps
Step 1: Universal Roof Rack
To remove the old hardware, I had to drill out the metal rivets at the strap ends. You can get to these by sliding the rubber protector down off the attaching plate.