etrailer.com Steel Folding Cargo Carrier Review

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Review of the etrailer.com Steel Folding Cargo Carrier


Hey guys. Randy here at etrailer.com. So today we're going to be taking a look at the etrailer 24" x 60" folding cargo carrier. Now while this does fit in that 24" x 60" range, it's just a little bit bigger. We'll get some measurements on that for you in a minute. But it still maintains a 500 pound capacity.

But what really sets this carrier apart, is that we can fold it up into such a small compact size. It's almost about the size of a standard suitcase that you can store and carry just about anywhere.Now the nice compact size is also going to lend itself to those of you who live in apartments or condos, where stairs and hallways are going to be an issue for you to get it inside and store. Just reach down, grab our handle and head up pretty easily. As you can see, it fits pretty nicely and it's pretty easy to pack.The compact size also lends itself to being stored in areas we really wouldn't expect a cargo carrier to fit like the trunk, this is a Passat, but any of your smaller SUVs, medium, large size SUV or sedans. You really should have enough room to just tuck it away pretty easily.

It's going to be really good for just getting to your destination and not wanting it installed on the rear of the vehicle. Or once you get there, to take it out, throw it in there and keep it secure.It's also been designed small enough to where we can put it in a hall closet or a coat closet and it really not take up a whole lot of room. It's also really handy in situations. Maybe you're in a more confined space or a smaller apartment. You don't necessarily want it inside, but you have the storage space outside.

It can very neatly tuck right in against one of the walls and still leave you a lot of space.So as you guys can see, this is a very versatile cargo carrier. I don't think this is going to be the cargo carrier that everybody chooses. I think though that if you have storage issues or if you have limited space in which you can keep things, I think this is an excellent choice. On the flip side of that, if you have plenty of storage room and you don't really care about it folding up nice and compact, I really like the etrailer folding and tilting cargo carrier. That allows us to fold it up towards the rear of our vehicle to save space, but also allows us to tilt it away from the vehicle to get into the rear hatch.

So they both have about the same dimensions. They both have the same weight capacity, but some people just won't appreciate the folding aspect like others will. So I think if storage is an issue, this is definitely the way to go. If you don't really have an issue with storage, I'd go with that etrailer folding and tilting carrier.The overall construction's really nice. You can see the floor, plenty of openings there for connecting straps and things that. Pretty durable steel. You see pushing on it, not a lot of flex, not a lot of give. And then that black paint finish over the top help keep corrosion down to a minimum on it. All of our levers here are cam locks. You can see really nice and positive engagement gives you the sense of it being very secure. And just to help with visibility whether it's in the stored position like this or in the usable position. You can see the reflectors on the back here. Just illuminating anytime lights hit them to indicate you've got something behind you.All right guys, let's go over some of the dimensions of the carrier. Now, as far as the industry standard or what segment it fits into, it's a 24" by 60" carrier. Of course, since we've made it, it's a little bit of an overachiever. It has a little bit more space there to use. We'll start by inside going side to side here. We're going to be right at 62", so a couple of extra inches there that don't we normally see. And then when we go inside to inside here, looking at about 24-3/4". So we get just a little bit of extra space which is always nice.Now the raised side rail portion you can see is going to be about 3-1/4" tall and that is a little bit shorter than what we see out of a lot of the other 24" by 60" cargo carriers. Generally those are going to be 4-1/2" to 5-1/2". But to get the great folding function and be able to make it such a nice compact item when not in use, just something we decided to do. We decided that that function would make it a lot easier to use than having a slightly higher rail.Of course, we've got all the great tie down points that are going to go all the way around in lots of different areas to tie down inside of the carrier. There are a couple other measurements that are going to be important just to help you ensure that this is going to work out for your situation. We're going to measure from the center of the hitch pin hole, so everybody's going to have that on their vehicle and we're going to start by going to the closest edge of the carrier. It's going to be right here at the front of those cams. There we've got about 18-1/2", so it should work out with just about any vehicle. That gives us plenty of room so we don't have to worry about this making contact with the rear bumper. Next thing we'll do is the center of the hitch pin hole to the outer most edge. This is going to help you identify if you can maybe park this in your garage without having to fold the carrier up or something like that. And that measurement is going to be about 46-1/2".Now I'm going to get this in the folded up position. We'll go over just a couple of more measurements to help kind of identify if it'll work in the folded up position in your garage and things like that. Our closest edge is going to be kind of right here in this area, kind of hugs in towards the vehicle. And our furthest edge will be out here. And this is still a pretty significant gap here, so I don't think you're going to run into any issues. We we're looking at an 11-1/2". So as long as your hitch pin hole doesn't sit further than that underneath your vehicle, this should fit with no problem. And then for the most compact storage option, about 17-3/4". So if you've got that kind of room between your hitch pin hole and your garage door or the end of your parking spot, you ought to be able to leave that attached without having any interference.All right now for the installation process. And basically we're going to go from pulling it out of the box. So one of the biggest benefits to this carrier is that there's really no assembly required. Everything's already put together, the way it folds up nice and neat. We're able to ship it to you just like you're going to need it for when you install it in your vehicle. So I'll just grab it out, set it over here, get a little bit of this packaging off, and just throw it back in the box. I just like to stand it up on the end like that. Then pull the clip and pin located here. Which just rotates our mast down. So it's ready to go into our receiver tube.We're going to take out our anti rattle bolt in that clip and we can just place it in the receiver. So we'll just slide it in. So we line up our pin hole with the hole on our receiver tube there and we can slide in our anti rattle bolt. We'll just begin to thread that all the way in. Now to tighten down our bolt, we'll need to use a 24 millimeter wrench or socket or you can also use a large crescent wrench. You might not have that exact same size socket, but a crescent wrench will do just as good of a job. Once we get that tightened down, all that typical shake and movement that we get out of a lot of cargo carriers, we've completely negated. So we're going to have a nice solid ride for any cargo we have loaded up. Slide that clip in the other side, we'll be good to go.Now we've got a small piece of hook and loop here in the middle. We'll take that off. Loosen our levers on both ends here. Allow that to slide out on both sides. Then we can re-engage those levers to lock that in position and then we'll loosen up our outer levers. Bring that next portion out. Do that same thing on the other side and we'll be ready to use our carrier.Now another thing I really like about this carrier are the options we have when we tilt it up towards the rear of our vehicle just for compact storage when we're using it. Basically in most cases as you tilt this up, it's going to block your taillights. So we have the option when doing this to move this portion of the carrier in. That end we can cam it down, lock it in that position, and then tilt it up. So if it's not blocking your taillights, you really don't have to take that step. But if it is, we have that option. Pull our pin, rotate it up towards the rear there. And once we've got that through, just replace our clip. At that point we've got it in the stowed position. So either way you choose to do it if you need to do it this way so you can still have your lights visible or maybe you've got a little bit wider vehicle and it doesn't matter. We've got the option to do it either way we want.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 evasively maneuvering. Once we get to the alternating speed bumps, we'll see the twisting action. This will simulate hitting a curb or 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 a parking lot, parking garage or driveway.


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