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· <3's Ridin' Dirty
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am roof rack retarded.

My friend and I are trying to research the possibility of purchasing a roof rack for her dad's vehicle. He wants to be able to haul a bike, a canoe and a kayak (not all at once, of course). Having only heard of one type of roof rack, I wandered over the the Thule site to see if I could figure out what we were in for--I'm even more confused.

How do these things work? Do you have a set of "feet" then buy a different attachment for each toy that you want to mount? Or can you buy one rack that will flipswitchchange around to hold whatever needs to be held up there?

Are there some brands that are better than others?

How much is she going to have to spend so this man can take his bike to the park one day and his kayak the next?

Forgive my complete lack of understanding--please be kind.
 

· <3's Ridin' Dirty
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I just saw racks and had a completely different idea.
Oh, I see how that happened, since what I posted is so close to:

"please school me on the art of caressing another womans breasts and suckling her nipples whilst she whispers sweet nothings into my ear"

I can see how you would have gotten the wrong idea, but I have zero interest in learning about any other rack but my own.

Thanks for the help with roof racks. :thumb:
 

· Premium Member
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4,823 Posts
I used to work for a bike shop that sold Thule so this is in regards to that brand.

Depending on the vehicle some use a universal foot kit, some have a vehicle specific design, and some have both options. Jeep Cherokee for example you can get a universal foot kit that attaches to the rain gutter or you can get the specific kit for the XJ that attaches to the factory roof rack. Typically the vehicle specific kits are a little nicer. Again using the Cherokee as an example the vehicle specific kit uses a quick release system so the rack can easily be taken on and off.

So once you pick out a foot kit then its onto bar sizes (varying widths). Typically if you want to haul mutiple boats you'll want the widest bars. But I'd look at the boat widths and what ever else you want to haul and go from there.

Once you have the feet and bars picked out then its as easy as picking the mounts for what you want to haul: bikes, boats, skis, snowboards, etc. Within each type of mount there are usually at least two designs to choose from. That comes down to budget and personal preference.
 

· <3's Ridin' Dirty
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
This is for a 2002 Saturn SC2. So am I understanding that he would need to get feet ($400+), then bars, then a mounts--one each for the canoe, kayak and bike?

Where is the best placed to find this type of stuff used at an excellent price?
 

· Out for the Summer!
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5,099 Posts
Racks can get pretty confusing.

There are two main brands that I've heard of Yakima and THule. Both are quality racks. Both also function in the exact same way. Usually you will have the "base rack" which is just the bars and the four towers (or feet as you put) that attach the bars to the Vehicle. As far as Attaching Goes, it can get pretty vehicle Specific. At Least Yakima has a "Fit Guide" that will tell you exactly what you need. I have no Idea bout THule because I've never looked at them.

Once you get the "Base Rack" you have to buy more accessories for the different pieces of Equipment you want to put on it. As far as Ease of switching goes, that just depends on how much roof space you have (Think Full sized van compared to a VW Beetle). It would be more about how you have the Different Rack Accessories positioned. You may be able to fit a Bike bar on but not at the same time as the kayak one. Or Some other combination.

For Price you're probably looking around 500 bucks (Conservative Guess, I didn't look at any websites) with the Less expensive accessories. As with any other business they have "better quality" products that cost more but function just as the Base, Less expensive, parts.

There is a Decent amount of stuff you can find on Craigslist you just have to know what you're looking for. Do you need a 1a Raingutter tower or a 1b raingutter tower...that kind of stuff. I found a Less known brand (Saris) rack for 20 bucks that retailed for 250. Garage sale season is your best friend right now. I've found that most people don't use the racks for transporting as much as they do it for looks. Good luck!
 

· Premium Member
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This is for a 2002 Saturn SC2. So am I understanding that he would need to get feet ($400+), then bars, then a mounts--one each for the canoe, kayak and bike?

Where is the best placed to find this type of stuff used at an excellent price?
you got it.

used? that's a tough one. the mounts you might be able to get of CL or similar. one of the main difference between Thule and Yakima is bar shape, Thule rectangle, Yakima round. Thule used to make some of its mounts to fit either bar shape but something to keep in mind if you're piecing a system together. the feet and bars might be harder to find used.
 

· Fuck talk, Duck walk!
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15,043 Posts
This is for a 2002 Saturn SC2. So am I understanding that he would need to get feet ($400+), then bars, then a mounts--one each for the canoe, kayak and bike?

Where is the best placed to find this type of stuff used at an excellent price?
What useable advice I can give is first figure out what feet best work for your vehicle and go from there. I like Yakima components, search ebay and see if you can find used stuff.
 

· Haggard Fab
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11,993 Posts
What useable advice I can give is first figure out what feet best work for your vehicle and go from there. I like Yakima components, search ebay and see if you can find used stuff.
My yakima basket is only about 2 years old and the paint has not held up well.
 

· Catch the wave
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7,988 Posts
my old yakima rack (15+ years old) is still holding up fine. that being said I never left it on the car, and it's currently hanging in the garage holding two spools of wire, a weed whacker and a leaf blower from the kayak stacker mounted to the cross bars.

that being said, it can, with the proper attachments carry not only two kayaks, but two mountain bikes at the same time.

it may be more useful/versatile to buy a used jetski trailer for $200 and simply tow your toys behind that saturn. quite often the feet/towers/clips for roof racks are specific to various car models - and honestly I wouldn't have mine if it weren't gifted to me by my best friend so many years ago.
 

· <3's Ridin' Dirty
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Great information, I think the idea of picking up a used trailer is out of the question. If he had the space to store a jetski trailer, then this 50 year old retired firemen wouldnt be driving around in a 2002 itty bitty Saturn that he can just eek into the garage around his wife's SUV, grandkid's toys and what powertools his wife has let him keep!

Im not sure that he was thinking "2 up" at this point, but it might be a good idea to think ahead. He wants the rack so he can take these toys out on Grandpa Day's with his Grandson--but eventually--the little guy is going to have his own toy to take.
 

· Premium Member
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just go on the yakima site and see what they require for the car you're trying to fit on. the towers and clips are what you really need to check. yakima may suggest a min crossbar just to clear the width of the roof. CL ad doesnt state what size they have for sale so you'd have to double check that.
 

· Out for the Summer!
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http://detroit.craigslist.org/okl/spo/1801499138.html

So when I am looking at a CL post like this, how do I determine what type of vehicle these will fit?
You may just have to ask them. I looked up the Vehicle (I'm really bored today) and it says you would need Q-towers with Q Clips. That could mean it would work. I, for some odd reason, remember different kinds of Feet or Clips you could get for different cars. That's where the issue may be. Each website should have a "Fit" option that allows you to put in the information and see what they suggest. Only other option would be to take the Car to the guy selling it and see if it fits.
 
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