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Old 06-30-2017, 07:24 PM   #1
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Default Kayaks carried on side of van?

Hi
I was wondering if any one has ever carried a kayak on the side of their Roadtrek?
I installed some D rings just under my awning. They seem very secure and stable.
Thinking of carrying my kayak on the side of the van bottom side out.
Would still be able to use front passenger door. Double side doors would not be usable.
Should still be under the Max. width allowable?
Am I forgetting about something important? This seems like it would be way easier,than roof mounting.
I can not find a photo of a Yak being carried this way? I must be over looking something?
Don't want to do any thing that might be dangerous ? Or risk damage to van or kayak.
If you have any suggestions,please let me know.
Thank you
Eddie
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Old 06-30-2017, 07:38 PM   #2
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Okay.
Found a company that makes a system for mounting yaks on the side of the van.
So, I guess it must be legal to do so?
Think I will modify a set of gutter mounts to make a side rack.
Considering putting them on the driver side? Any thoughts?
Was going to modify the gutter racks to use over the roof........but ,the roof is really kinda up there.
Not real easy to load a 14 foot kayak solo on the roof.
Again please,any thoughts or ideas welcome.
Thank you and cheers
Eddie
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Old 06-30-2017, 07:48 PM   #3
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oh, I'm watching to see how you make out...

I do and have seen paddleboards, surf boards on side racks...one of my pals just had a BIG rack installed on his sprinter to carry kayak on roof.

we have tried the other way...a 7' plastic kayak mounted vertically...the square-ish tail sits in a plastic cradle ( cut down milk crate really) attached to a rear hitch mount carrier- the mid of the yak is strapped to spare tire.

for out most recent trip...an inflatable which fits under the bad.

neither are awesome as kayaks go, but they float and carry people...

Mike
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Old 06-30-2017, 11:41 PM   #4
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Default Kayak Carrier

Hey Mike.
Will keep you posted.
Right now I have a couple sets of drip rail mount racks.
Going to modify them one way or another.
On top is great, but it's hard to load them that high solo.
And I do have solar panels which would then be blocked and not very effective.
Right now I am considering mounting them on driver side at the drip rail.
This would make them out of the way as far as my ability to see clearly.
And would make it a snap to park in the average parking space.
I have a nice trailer I made just for this kayak and it's great.
But that means .....another tag....more maintenance .
And it can be a hassle to park a lot of the time.
Will keep you posted.
If you have any ideas or suggestions....let me know .
Thanks
Eddie
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Old 07-01-2017, 12:01 AM   #5
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I had 14 foot hard shell kayaks and for years explored ways to carry them on my Bs. No 14 foot kayak in my opinion is worth carrying around like a 17 foot high performance sea kayak. So, I relented and got inflatable kayaks for recreational purposes and not serious kayaking for taking in our B. They fit inside, two of them, under our beds.
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Old 07-01-2017, 12:16 AM   #6
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We have 2 kayaks that are 16' long, I did look at mounting on the sides, but it really didnt seem safe to me. For 2 reasons I didnt do it, first was the blocking my vision while driving, they really do stick out alot, and the second reason was for width reasons, The Roadtrek is wide already going down the road, the chances of being side swiped, or side swiping someone else really made me nervous. I did as you said and used the gutter rails and made my own racks on the top of the van.It really is the safest way to go in my opinion.,,,,,, good luck with it,,,,
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Old 07-01-2017, 04:15 AM   #7
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This is doable by one person with one ladder, but it's not fun and I wouldn't do it again. I'd get an inflatable. Those are 10' boats.

IMG_0004_zpsufksx1rr.JPG
IMG_0005_zpsdoazzw1g.JPG
IMG_0007_zpsrwg0vnga.JPG

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Old 07-01-2017, 12:27 PM   #8
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Thank you for the pics.
That is exactly what I was thinking.
Just trying to figure a way to get them up there .
It can be a chore for one person. Especially after paddling ,and fishing/diving all day.a few years ago ....no sweat,just throw them up there.......not so easy to do.
I am thinking of maybe using a small boat wench in the front to hoist it up.
Something quick and easy to attach/detach to the upper core support?
Thanks again for the pics.
Where did you find those awesome racks?
I will probably modify a set to do what I need.
Maybe if I mount the yak on it's side. It will not cover too much of the solar panels ?
Thanks
Eddie
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Old 07-01-2017, 12:31 PM   #9
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Wow! How tall it that?
Nice looking rig,Really dig the bright red paint!
I thought the roof of the RT was high? That's up there!
Thanks
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Old 07-01-2017, 01:14 PM   #10
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Those are Fiamma racks supplied by Winnebago if you spec that option. Good high quality stuff. The problem is the roof of that van is almost 9.5' off the ground.

If you're doing this alone, imagine carrying your kayak in one arm while making sure you don't fall off a very tall ladder with your other arm all the while trying not to bang the boat along the side of your shiny red van. It's dangerous work .

It also takes a lot of trips up and down a large ladder that itself needs to be re-positioned quite often to lash everything securely. And you get to bring that ladder along. It takes about 1/2 an hour to put both boats up there.

That van is now over 11' tall. Kinda scary. As far as your solar panels are concerned I would think they'll be just about worthless with boats over them.

Like I said, for me, it's a dead end. I'll never carry my kayaks up there again.
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Old 07-03-2017, 01:09 AM   #11
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A couple of months ago we looked at a Travato that came with the roof kayak carrier. When I saw how high it was I laughed out loud. I'm 5'2" - I would never even try that arrangement.

I used to be able to put our two kayaks - cheap ones, in the range of 40-60 lbs each - onto the J bars mounted on top of my 1999 Subaru Forester:

-step up into doorwells and thread the ratchet straps through the four J bars, place them so that they don't get knocked down when you slide the boats on
-place a dry towel over each rear J bar so that the kayak can slide forward on it and not get caught on the rubber cushion of the J bar
-put a 10' plastic stepstool in *just the right spot* on the ground behind the car
-pick up a kayak and hoist the front end toward the general direction of the rear J bar, grunt
-start sliding the thing up onto the towel on the rear J bar while
-stepping up onto the step stool, grunting
-try to keep it from twisting or sliding down
-if it doesn't fall down and take out your side mirror (expensive, ask me how I know)
-have a celebratory beer
-repeat first steps with the other boat
-step up into the doorwell to remove the towels on each side, and
-throw the ends of the straps over the top of each boat
-tighten and fix up the rachet straps so they won't flap
-set and tighten a cord from the front of each boat to under the front bumper

That model was much shorter than the current Foresters, and nowhere near as high as a van. When the Forester died we got a 2005 Rav 4 which is much higher, and that was the end of my kayak-carrying independence.

Nowadays with my bad back I can't even lift my luggage into the above bin on a plane. Hm. I wonder why I have a bad back?
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Old 07-03-2017, 01:57 AM   #12
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Sounds familiar.
First time I tried a test run to see about loading my 14 ft. fishing kayak on top of my Roadtrek........I realized ,just how high that thing is!
My kayak is not too heavy ? But the length makes it awkward to handle.
I think I am gonna mount it to the side of my roof? High enough to be out of the way.
But not covering the solar panels.
Also makes the height about a foot and a half lower ,maybe more.
And that as you know,is a giant difference. When trying to load a long yak.

And by the way I work as a painter at a dealership that sales Subaru. I know the parts are expensive!
Thanks for your reply .
Cheers
Eddie
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Old 08-07-2017, 10:51 PM   #13
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I carry two 8' kayaks vertically on the back of my hi-roof Promaster... my homemade kayak carrier uses the trailer hitch and hard mounts on the door hinges... allows me to carry a bicycle carrier as well.
https://vancave.wordpress.com/cargo-...miscellaneous/
Best,
Phranc
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Old 08-22-2017, 09:25 AM   #14
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I put mine of the roof. I think the side would make it too wide.
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Old 05-01-2018, 04:37 AM   #15
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we have custom racks on the side of our pleasureway excel they slide down to load and push up and pin for travel.
one replaced the awning .We have full size 17 ft seaward kayaks and they are only 3" wider than the mirrors when raised to travel.
I send some pics when i figure it out.
regards don 2006 pleasureway excel
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Old 05-01-2018, 12:38 PM   #16
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Ok, I probably shouldn't say this out loud here, but I was actually considering an inflatable kayak...

Seems the rigid ones must be MUCH better to make them worth the effort of carrying them. We used to have one, but it became too much to handle when we were lifting it to the top of a 4X4 truck.
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Old 05-01-2018, 03:53 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phoebe3 View Post
Ok, I probably shouldn't say this out loud here, but I was actually considering an inflatable kayak...
Or rent one at the lake.
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Old 05-01-2018, 05:00 PM   #18
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Quote:
Ok, I probably shouldn't say this out loud here, but I was actually considering an inflatable kayak...
That is just what we did. Here is a link to the one we bought.
https://www.seaeagle.com/SportKayaks...SAAEgKP1vD_BwE
It has a carry bag everything goes into and the bag will fit in the outside 'basement' of our 1999 Xplorer.
I had searched for racks/loading systems for rigid kayak/canoe and found little that seemed feasible so I gave up on that idea and went searching for inflatables. We bought it two years ago and have used it several times for fishing/exploring small lakes. I would rather paddle a rigid canoe but it works and gets us out on the water.
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Old 05-01-2018, 09:00 PM   #19
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I do NOT recommend Sea Eagle. A couple of us on Air Forums had them, and they developed dry rot even with considerable care. It was a waste of hundreds of dollars.

Following the deposition of my Sea Eagle 330 squarely in the outgoing trash, I went for a cheapie called an Intex Explorer K2 Kayak- about 75 bucks at the time (now 80 on Amazon). I've been very pleased with it. I don't do enough kayaking to justify purchasing a high-end product.

I had a good laugh re: the "rent at the lake" comment. Some of us wouldn't be caught dead at a lake where other people were to be found, let alone rental places.

Pics of the kayak roof-mounted (I sewed a case for it and I strap it under the leading edge of our solar panels - blog post with case instructions here), and a pic of it at an undeveloped lake. Dog hates getting left behind.




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Old 05-01-2018, 09:42 PM   #20
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I have no idea who/what air forums is/are, therefore missed out on whatever conclusions you are referring to. I was not trying to sell Sea Eagle to anyone but rather was simply saying that an inflatable was a viable option & that is what we chose. Ours has performed fine so far. If/when it dies, I promise to be more diligent when looking for a replacement.
Dave
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