kayaks mounted on 08 factory cross bar/rack - Toyota RAV4 Forums
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#1 (permalink) Old 11-30-2012, 02:28 PM
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kayaks mounted on 08 factory cross bar/rack

Hi Folks,

Need some help or guidance here.

I know there are several threads with pieces of information here and there, but I have yet to find detailed information regarding model #s, straps, setup etc. for mounting 1 (or 2 in my case) kayaks onto the factory cross bar/rack.

I currently have 2x 10'6", 30'' beam, 13'' tall, recreational kayaks, each weigh about 45lbs at most. My current setup consists of using these j style racks:

Amazon.com: SportRack ABR511 J-Stacker Kayak Carrier: Sports & Outdoors

along with the hood loops made by yakima (thule makes them as well):

yakima: Amazon.com: Yakima Anchor Straps: Sports & Outdoors

thule: Amazon.com: Thule Hood Loop Strap: Sports & Outdoors

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I find issues with both products:

1. sport rack ABR511 (apparently made by thule, but no confirmation) have very decent reviews, but I find them the be a bit cumbersome when mounting onto the factory bars with a weak feel to them. they have very few foam pads when compared to the higher priced malones, thules, yakima jstyle racks. What bothers me the most is the bottom of the sport rack ABR511 is simply plastic which stratches the living hell out of the bars as I tigthen them down; even then they seem to potentially slide with just the right amount of lateral force. Is it wise/safe to simply place a rubber pad underneath these racks? Do the others come with rubber pads at the point of contact to the cross bar?

2. the yakima hood loops are a nice feature, but the grommets are really really weak. i can bend them very easy with little to no effort by simply opening the loops. of course, i expect once bolted down onto the frame this should not happen, but the grommets were not centered onto the loops and extremely close to the ends (i.e., grommet diameter meets the width of the loop). potentially an easy spot for break down; again they are cheap, but not the kayaks!!

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Sorry for the long A@@ thread intro, but I'd like to get other kayakers experience with these type of products, in particular j style rack brand, model#, that are mounted onto the factory cross bar/rack.

Any other suggestions are welcomed.

Thanks
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#2 (permalink) Old 12-07-2012, 03:29 AM
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FYI for those that care.. i switched to malone downloader j style kayak racks.

Amazon.com: Malone Downloader Folding J-Style Universal Car Rack Kayak Carrier with Bow and Stern Lines: Sports & Outdoors

these are supreme when compared to the sportracks, very convenient fold down feature (especially from the late night return when upright position are too tall for the garage entry), stronger steel, better mounts (although still plastic is exposed that can ruin the cross bar, solved using cabinet liners from ikea), wider j bars for better contact with kayak, and load board with tie down points for straps. Also the included straps are better with metal clamps protected with leather cloth to prevent damage to kayak and hook are stronger as well the supplied rope.

Will post pictures some soon with/without kayaks mounted.
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