Factory Roof Rack ... Fail! E-mail
Sunday, 07 September 2014 22:48

20140831 201816

One of the fun parts of the trips we take is that we get to beat up on equipment. In the past we've broken rods, electronics, mounts, and records. Our recent trip to Kodiak was no exception.

Thud! We had just bounced over a speedbump in the parking lot of a state park. "Whoops!", Rudy said, as the kayak bounced on the rack above. Nothing appeared broken and we continued on without a concern. Later that evening as we were heading down the highway, we heard a noise on the roof. In the side view mirror I spotted a triangular black object bouncing down the road behind us. We pulled oven, then doubled back to check what it was, not having the slightest clue that we had just broken the factory roof rack of a Ford Explorer.

The racks we had set up consisted of a Yakima bar in the front, but due to not being able to get the correct foot in time for the trip, the factory rack was used in the rear.  Two Hobie Outbacks were stacked on their sides on top of this. In hindsight, only the front factory rack was used and it was fairly close to the front Yakima rack. The relatively solid Yakima rack likely acted as a fulcrum, exerting extra pressure on the single factory rack. And with two Hobie Outbacks on the roof, we definitely exceeded the factory recommendations. It's rather impressive breaking a factory rack.  Will we ever use factory racks again?  Not likely!

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