etrailer Tilting Cargo Carrier Review

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Review of the etrailer Tilting Cargo Carrier


Hey guys, Randy here at etrailer.com. Today we're taking a look the etrailer folding and tilting cargo carrier. When we have our hands on a lot of cargo carriers up here. We got to a test fit them and play with them. The one thing that they've always lacked is the ability to tilt it away from your vehicle.With our Caravan here, and in some vehicles this isn't a problem, but with the Caravan it's got this longer door. As we're opening the hatch, it always wants to make contact with our items.

This is at about . I think this one breaks over about 21 inches.What we've been able to do is create a cargo carrier using a pin system here. You can see we're going to remove the pin on top, remove the pin on the bottom, and while you will need to lift up on the back of the carrier slightly, once that's pin is out, you're going to see that's going to tilt out and away from our vehicle.At that point it opens up our angle. You can see now there's plenty of clearance there. At this point it really wouldn't matter how high our items we're stacked up, that door would never come in contact with it.Now, getting it back in the stored position, or in the usable position rather, again, you'll have to lift up on the back of it.

This is a pretty light load. This is our etrailer cargo bag. It's pretty light. I can lift up from the back. But in a heavy load situation it's likely you're going to need a second set of hands.We'll bring that through, clip that back in, and replace our upper pin there as well, and use the clip to secure it.

At that point, as long as our load's secured and everything, we're ready to head down the road.Now, as a nice way to protect more sensitive items, maybe you've got a couple bags of clothes or something that you're trying to transport, or really anything you want to keep out of the sun or out of the weather, we have our etrailer cargo carrier bag. It has six straps, three on the back, there on the front. So, it's really a good fit in the carrier. Really no issues with it overhanging too much one side or the other. So, it could just be a good way to protect your items further.Definitely keep in mind, any of these bags and cargo carriers aren't going to be waterproof.

It will help to resist the elements, but if it's something that is sensitive to water, be sure you keep it protected.Now, another feature that I really like that we included in this cargo carrier is an anti-rattle bolt. It's going to come with it. It just threads in from the side and that's, once tightened down, it's going to prevent that movement that we get out of these carriers.If you've ever seen a cargo carrier going down the road before, shifts one way, shifts back the other way, shifts one way, shifts back the other way. That can be transferred right into our vehicle and just makes for an uncomfortable ride. I think any cargo carrier out there benefits from an anti-rattle device. You can buy one to add on, or go with one that already has it included, but it really will make using a cargo carrier much more enjoyable.And here's a look at another very popular cargo carrier we offer. This is the Reese Explorer. This is a fixed cargo carrier, so we can't fold it, we can't tilt it. But it does offer the same weight capacity that we have with the etrailer cargo carrier. The thing I like about it here, you can see the nice larger open mesh, same as what's on that etrailer carrier, that allows that stuff to fall out and through. But, it doesn't come with any type of anti-rattle device. You can see there's a lot of movement and a lot of play, which is very common with cargo carrier without anti-rattle devices. You're going to have that. So, unless you invest in that system you're not going have that same stability we're getting out of the etrailer carrier.Now, here's another look at a very popular carrier. This the Curt folding 24x60. This one's designed . I'll show with the pin here, pull that out. You should be able to bring that up into a stored position. You get it up here, and just replace that pin, and that'll allow you to take a lot of that room off the back of the vehicle.The thing that it doesn't have, of course, is that tilt away option. The holes in the floor of this are a little bit smaller. You can see the mesh not quite as large and open, so this is going hang onto those smaller rocks and chunks of mud longer than what we'd see out of our other carriers.Now, with the Curt Cargo Carrier, we are buying a little bit of room here over our Reese from the center of our hitch pin hole, to the front edge of the carrier we're at 19 inches. With the Reese, it's down to like 12-3/4 so it comes in pretty close to the rear of your vehicle. With the etrailer cargo carrier though, we're able to extend this back another 1/2 inch. So, not only are we getting more space here, but that tilt away option should make it just about impossible for you to run your door into whatever items you have loaded up.Now, as you can see this one, just like our Reese, is going to have a lot of movement and play, something we don't get out of that etrailer carrier. So, that transfer of weight side to side, it's not going to be transferred into your vehicle.As far as weight capacities go, they're all going to be right in line with each other at 500 pounds. Generally, you're always going to have good attachment points. I think the Reese and the etrailer are going to have the most. And, then of course the raised side rail here, this and the Reese being 5-1/2, where the etrailer is at 6-1/2.Now, as far as the options that you're going to see on all types of cargo carriers, generally like at raised rail here on the outside, they've tried to design it so it's just a little bit better. So, from the surface of our carrier here to the top, it's 6-1/2 inches. That's an inch higher than what you generally see. Now, that's been to give us additional stability for our items to keep them rocking back and forth quite as much while we're traveling.We also have a lot of connection points around here for bungees, straps, cam buckles, or ratchet straps so you can get them around, get them connected, and then get your load secured down properly.Now, the floor in this cargo carrier was chosen because of the large open holes on it. A lot of carriers you're going to see, you're going to have a mesh style like this, but this one with the larger holes will allow dirt, mud and things like that to fall down and through more easily than if these are smaller, or even a solid floor.Now, as far as the assembly of your cargo carrier, the way it fits together . Really, this cargo carrier is going to be right in line with the Curt that folds. Even really with the Reese, there's maybe two less bolts on this one than those, but that's not that big of a deal.And, the finish itself, the Curt has a nice matte finish to it. The Reese has a gloss finish. This one kind of fits right in between the two of those. It's not as deep of a matte as we see on the Curt, but also not as glossy as what we see with the Reese.The carrier also has the ability to fold up towards the rear of your vehicle. It's just a simple pin and clip. It's going to be the lower of the two that we used here to tilt it away. Same removal process, lift slightly on the rear there, and then we can bring that up towards our vehicle. We'll now line up our lower pin hole, get our pin slid through, and secure it with the clip.Now, as you can see, this is shared with the Curt, and it drastically reduces the amount of length that we've added to the rear of the vehicle. This will allow us to get in parking spots more easily, maybe park it in the garage overnight if you don't want to unload it and put it back in for the next day. This is not something that we get with the Reese though. Remember, that's a straight fixed style carrier.Just to give you an idea of what kind of space the carrier's going to take up on the rear of the vehicle, to the closest edge of the cargo basket itself when it's folder up, we've got 8-1/2 inches from our pin hole. When its folded down, that's going to be 19-1/2 to that front edge. The farthest edge of the carrier when it's folded up, away from our vehicle is about 18-3/4 of an inch. And then, when folded out, or into its usable position, it's closer to 43-1/4.Now, as far as the dimensions of the carrier itself, it's going to be in the 24x60 category. Now, there's a few inches give or take in most of the 24x60 cargo carriers. There's also 20x60 cargo carriers, and they might be 19. But in this case, front to back here, outside to outside, carrier's going to be 24 inches. The usable space in the inside here is going to be 22-1/4. Widthwise, we're going to be at about 60 inches, but that usable interior space is going to be 58-1/4.All in all, I really like the way this cargo carrier works. I've dealt with a lot of them. And, I think the engineering department came up with a very good solution for a really common problem. While when it does have a heavy load on it, you might need an extra set of hands to lift up on the back and lower it down, it's going to save you a lot of time over unloading the entire thing to get the one thing out of the back of the vehicle that you forgot.Now, to get your carrier installed into your hitch, of course you'll need a two inch by two inch receiver tube opening, but we can do it in the folded position like this, or also in the flat position. I think it's just a little bit easier to do it while folded. You can get in there and have more access. We're just going to lift up, place it right into the receiver tube, and we need to slide it in so that the hole in the shank lines up with the pin hole in our hitch.Once we've got those lined up, we're going to take our anti-rattle bolt, we're going to slide it in. We're going to thread it through. Now, we can do this in from the driver side, or in from the passenger side. I prefer the driver side first, but if you have interference and you can't quite get it in there, you can always switch to the passenger.Now, we'll snug it up using a wrench. Now, you can use a 24 millimeter, or a 15/16. Now once that's snugged down, all that movement and play that we usually get out of cargo carriers is gone. Now, we can take the clip provided. We're going to slide it in the hole that's in the end of our anti-rattle bolt.Now, once we have our anti-rattle bolt nice and secure, to get it into the loading position we'll just remove one pin. So, the one lower here on the back. We'll pull the clip out, pull the pin out, and allow that to rotate down into the platform position. At that point we'll return our pin. Might have to lift slightly to get it to engage, and then slide in our clip for some security.Now, before we go we're going to take a minute and head out to our test course. We're going to put about 200 pounds on the carrier, and show you how it performs in real life situations.Here on our test course we'll start by going through the slalom. This is going to show us the side to side action. This simulates turning corners, or basically maneuvering.Once we get to the alternating speed bumps, we'll see the twisting action. This will simulate hitting a curb or a pothole, or driving over uneven pavement.Once we get to the full speed bumps we'll see the up and down action. This will be just like driving in and out of parking lot, parking garage, or driveway.


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