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Old 06-12-2016, 10:45 AM   #1
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Tow vehicle roof rack experiences

I am "on the shop" for a roof system that works on pickups without a cap for a kayak- 16' kayak that weighs 102#, Roof Rack or Bed Rack?

I understand that roof rack purchases can get specific to whatever one plans to use it for but I have talked to Thule and Yakima and it seems that the base systems are needed regardless AND, there are differences- square bars, round bars, aero bars and then there is the second issue- loading and unloading alone.

I am looking at a Hobie Adventure Island 16' model weighing 102# (hull only). IN my case and with a pickup there are two options- a bed rack system or a cab roof system. I have heard arguments for both and even one for combining the two. I have learned that the roof systems are pretty much a static piece that stay there even when not in use while the bed racks now come in stow-away design. I really like the stow-away Idea though I am concerned that putting a 16' kayak more rearward when trying to tow an AS might be an issue. The ProPride hitch allows me to put the truck tailgate down so there is some room in the back

Anyone who tows kayaks have any ideas for a 16' footer and roof system or bed rack system? I am looking at the Yakima base towers and core rails or the Dee Zee Lo Pro QT Rack. I liked the Rhino Nautic rack but it says that it does not work on "clipped systems" which I understand all pickup systems are because of the naked roofline.
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Old 06-12-2016, 12:37 PM   #2
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Did you see this tread from last week:

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f42/...ck-151517.html

We have a Tundra pickup without a cap and haul 14 and 16 foot SOT kayaks that weigh 75 pounds each. We're using the base Yakima racks with pipe insulation wrapped in black duct tape on the top as a "roller". With the black tape it doesn't look too hooptie, lol.

When we tow the kayaks get pushed way forward and we put foam cradles on the cab roof for cushioning.

Let me know if you want a pic.
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Old 06-12-2016, 03:04 PM   #3
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Sorry, I meant to say that we use the Yakima bed racks, not the base racks, on our pickup.
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Old 06-12-2016, 07:22 PM   #4
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Here's my rig, with 14' kayaks on a 6.5' truck bed. The stern of the kayaks extend slightly past the ball of the hitch, leaving almost 3' of clearance between the kayaks and the Airstream. Thule XPorter 500 Pro.

I can easily carry 16' kayaks on this system, and longer if I want to push the kayaks forward a bit.

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Old 06-13-2016, 03:31 PM   #5
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Kayak Racks

We regularly haul our kayaks on our F250. We now have a cap but have also used a roof rack system with a tonneau cover. They have all worked well and we have covered many miles.

The Hobies are VERY heavy (although with some advantage for fishing) and we have gone to Eddyline Caribbean Anglers (a 14' and a 12'). They run about 45 lbs. each. The nice thing about a roof rack is that you have the truck bed to stand in and can "stage" the loading process. An advantage with heavy boats. Ford has a cool step and grab post built into the tailgate so you can heave the boat into the bed and then on to the roof. I think rollers would be essential.

An advantage with a cap is that you spread the load over a longer distance. I actually have 4 bars on the top of the truck--2 on the cap and 2 on the cab. Not necessary, but nice. I can space my mounts exactly where they should be for the length of the boat(s).

I have a Yakima system because that is what I started with 17 years ago. I prefer Thule as I think their build quality is higher right now (I know, same company) and the square bars do NOT twist in the towers as Yakima tends to do. But I have what I have. Hully Rollers on the rear bar and Mako mounts forward. A scrap piece of carpet with owner-crafted aluminum hooks goes over the rear bar when loading to avoid scratches. Yakima surfboard pads go over the middle bars to avoid scratches when pushing the boats forward. I am 72 and can load the boats myself.

As has been said, there is plenty of room for the aft ends when loaded on a cap or a bed mount rack. I, too, have a Pro-Pride hitch.

I would emphasize that I feel much more comfortable having the boat load spread over the truck bed and the cab, but think it can be safe either way. Just be sure to add bow and stern lines if you have a fairly short distance between mounting points.
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Old 06-13-2016, 04:03 PM   #6
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I don't see how you'll be able to use just a roof rack on a P/U with a 16 foot yak. There's not enough distance between the racks for a boat that long and heavy (Yakima says minimum is 24 inches but I think that is too short for heavy plastic boats). With a plastic boat you're likely to get oilcaning in hot weather. If it were composite, odds are you'd get stress cracks at some point.

You'll need the system for mounting the rack to the bed. You can put a single cross bar on the roof and then use a single bed rack to get the boat as far forward as possible. That will give you clearance from the trailer and still give good support for the boat.

The system I use is a Y rack coming out of the trailer hitch receptacle and a cross bar on teh roof of my Mazda P/U. Obviously not a system useful for trailering, but my loading procedures might be helpful. I have round bars that I've used pool noodles and duct tape to make a roller system (round crossbars help with this). I pick up the nose of the yak and lift it on to the back bar. Then go to the stern of the yak, pick it up and start pushing. It rolls right along the rack until the nose is up to the front. So I can self-load an 80lb WS Tarpon 160 like that. I just have it rest on the cushioned crossbars without a saddle or J-bracket. I have a saddle for my composite sit-inside, but load it the same way then just move it onto the saddles mounted on the far side of the crossbars. Being able to stand in the truck bed helps with this.

And finally ... that's a big boat. You might reconsider that end. I wouldn't want to load that. Depending on what you want to use it for that might be a lot more boat than what you need.
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Old 06-13-2016, 05:31 PM   #7
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But it's an awesome boat! I would go bed rack and at least one cab rack. Hully rollers to get it up there.


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Old 06-13-2016, 05:41 PM   #8
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Thule Xporter 500 Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by steverino View Post
Here's my rig, with 14' kayaks on a 6.5' truck bed. The stern of the kayaks extend slightly past the ball of the hitch, leaving almost 3' of clearance between the kayaks and the Airstream. Thule XPorter 500 Pro.

I can easily carry 16' kayaks on this system, and longer if I want to push the kayaks forward a bit.

I agree completely with Steverino. We have the same system on our 2016 F150 shortbed. We easily carry two 13' kayaks while towing our Airstream. I leave the rack on the truck full time (I lower the easy-to-adjust posts to a height just below the cab roof).
A 16' boat could easily be accommodated by moving the boat forward over the cab.
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Old 06-13-2016, 05:42 PM   #9
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Wow, ok, I can see the bed rack. There is a distance of about 5.5 feet between them and about 2' of boat out the back so that is half of it. That would leave an overhang over the cab of about 8' or so. The cab is 6' long so 2' past the windshield edge. It sounds like as long as I have some kind of cushion on the cab roof at around midpoint I should be ok??? I hate to have to buy two systems - bed rack and roof rack. I also have a sunroof so I will have to be creative even providing a cushion on the cab.

Thanks for the picture dbcolimon. It gives me an idea of what it would look like. What do you think about this rack (below)? I saw one in person and it is very well made IMO.

I am strongly considering this rack:

http://www.deezee.com/Invis-A-Rack-C...-System/p32923
It holds 500# and is towable and works with a cover.
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Old 06-13-2016, 06:24 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rodsterinfl View Post
Wow, ok, I can see the bed rack. There is a distance of about 5.5 feet between them and about 2' of boat out the back so that is half of it. That would leave an overhang over the cab of about 8' or so. -
Shown in the photo, I've got the rack posts 48" apart, and moved as far forward on the bed as possible. Due to the construction of the bed liner, the front posts are about 8" back from the cab. This, for a 14' kayak centered on the rack, leaves 5' overhangs front and rear of the rack.

For your 16' kayak, also centered on the posts, would leave 6' overhangs front and rear, thus putting the bow over the top of the windshield, and the stern 6' past the rear posts. You'd need to calculate how far past the end of the truck the stern would extend, based on the length of your truck bed. For mine, I did a quick sketch to see how much clearance to the trailer would result, considering tightest turn possible as well. If it gets too tight, you can always push the boat a foot or so forward as well. Keeping the boat on centerline of the truck helps too.
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Old 06-13-2016, 06:57 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rodsterinfl View Post
I am strongly considering this rack:

http://www.deezee.com/Invis-A-Rack-C...-System/p32923
It holds 500# and is towable and works with a cover.
Looks like a nice rack; I do like that it folds down. That feature is important if you want to fit in garages, either residential or commercial.

The Thule, in my opinion, has a couple advantages -

1. the rack rails are an aero design, and mate well with Thule and Yakima accessories. To mount the Thule saddles, it does need a silly "adapter kit" consisting of longer bolts.

2. The rails retract straight down, so I do not need to remove the kayak saddles when i want to lower it. They do not retract all the way down - they do stick up a few inches due to the construction of my drop-in bed liner. But enough to get the rail and kayak saddles below the level of the cab roof. It is possible, however, to unlock the "post keepers" and easily remove the posts and rails completely, just leaving the bases.

3. As mentioned in my previous post, the rear rack can be moved forward, thus moving the center of the kayak forward. It appears that the rear rack of the deezee needs to be mounted at the back end of the box, to allow the posts to fold down. This is helpful to squeeze a few more inches out of the rear overhang.
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Old 06-13-2016, 07:06 PM   #12
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Thanks Steverino. Also I believe you may have posted the pic. It sounds like the bed rack would be advantageous. I see what you mean about the benefits of the Thule. The invisi-rack's primary advantage is that it stows completely away without other parts to store. The disadvantage is that there are no gizmos other than the rails on the top. I guess I could slice some water noodles!
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Old 06-13-2016, 07:14 PM   #13
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Steverino are you using any truck bed cover with the Thule system? Can one be used?
Is there a system that allows truck cover that you know of?
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Old 06-13-2016, 07:23 PM   #14
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No, I am not using a cover. And, due to the way the posts are secured to the bed, I do not see a way to do it with the Thule or Yakima truck rack. I don't know about the DeeZee.
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