Rola J-Rac Kayak Carrier Review

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Review of the Rola J-Rac Kayak Carrier


Speaker 1: Today we're going to be taking a look at the Rola J-Rac kayak carrier with tie downs. This a J style carrier with fixed arms and a clamp on design. Part number is 59912. As you can see, the J-Rac's going to be a really solid solution for getting your kayak where you need it the most, whether that's the river, campsite, lake, wherever you're going. It allows us to transport that kayak, but as you can see, if you look around the backside, you're still going to have quite a bit of room on your roof rack for those additional items, whether you want to put a roof-top basket, cargo box, or just a couple of bike racks up there.Now, to protect your kayak, both here on the front side and back side of our J hook, we're going to have nice density foam pads. They're not so hard, so they're not going to be useful, but not so soft I feel like that you'll wear through them or anything like that.

On our cam buckle straps, we've got rubber enclosures that go around. You can see inside it's going to be our cam buckle, but we can slide these down and over, so, if there's any risk of these making contact with the boat itself, we won't have to worry about that scratching as we head down the road.Now, for securing the kayak to the J hooks, we're going to have the cam buckle straps included. These are 9 foot long, and they are going to have the rubber covers over, to offer additional protection for our boat, like we've talked about, but also the bow and stern's tie down straps are going to be included.The base of the J hook is going to use a rubber coated, steel upper portion to clamp. We've got a steel, lower portion here, and then just a couple of nuts to get that secured into place, really easy, quick installation, and it's going to work with just about all types of crossbars out there, whether you're using the arrow, the elliptical, square round, even most of the factor cross rail systems, we shouldn't have an issue. The only real requirement that we're going to have is a minimum spread between the center and center of our bars of 24 inches, keeping in mind that the further that gets, the more stability we're going to have for the kayak.In my opinion, having used these a little bit, they offer a lot of bang for the buck.

They're very cost effective solution for getting our kayaks around. I tend to lean towards the J hook style, personally, anyway when I'm moving a kayak around, just quick, easy, on and off, not a lot to worry about. I don't think these are quite as nice as some of the ones that maybe fold down flat. That's nicer if storage is a concern, if you plan on leaving them installed for an extended period of time, but with a lot of bang for the buck, a quick, easy, on and off, I think there's a lot of value with them. They do an excellent job getting your kayak where you need it to go.Now while the J-Rac carrier doesn't have a stated weight rating, you want to keep 2 weight ratings in mind.

You're going to have one for your roof rack system, and one for your vehicle's roof. Be sure you don't exceed either one of those.Based on other users' experiences, they all seem very positive. It's going to be an easy to use, sturdy rack. As we said, the carrier's going to work out with most roof rack systems on the market, and to begin you just want to open up your clamp. Now when I install, I like to leave one of my thumb screws attached, just really loose, and remove the other one.

We'll place it up on our cross bar and bring the lower part of our clamp around. You see we've got the rubber contact pad here that, again, helps with the movement, keeps everything still. Once we've got that in place, rotate the lower portion around, and we can just lift it up on the carriage bolt there on the front side. Now we can take our nut and we'll get that started.Another thing, you will want to make sure, is that you've got both carrier halves in line with one another. Now we'll get these tightened down evenly. If you tighten it up too much on one side or the other, that's when you'll start to get a little bit of lean, and you just want to eliminate that.With both halves installed, you'll be ready to load up your boat. You'll want to position it, kind of front or back, just so it's making really good contact with all of the points on your cradle. Now we're ready to grab out tie down straps and secure our kayak. We want to go through the top of our hoop here, and feed both sides over to the other side. Now in the instructions, it will indicate to you that you can knot this right here. If you do want to knot it, I would just make sure that the cam on your strap is going to be in about the middle position of your boat. We'll do that for the rear one as well.Now we'll take our tie again and go through our carrier, down around our cross bars, bring it back up, and we'll put it in that cam buckle. Now we can put some tension on it, get it tightened down. That's where those rubber covers come in too, if this was up against the hull of the boat, you wouldn't have to worry about any damage. Any excess will just loop around here and get secured.Now with both of our cam buckle straps in place, it's time to move on to the bow and stern tie down straps. You're essentially going to have a good length of rope, with a metal hook on the end. The metal hook will have a nice, wide throat, and this is designed for attaching to a metal item, typically underneath the front or the rear of your vehicle, like your hitch or a tow loop. On the Cherokee that we're working with today, there's not really a good option of getting down there without this rope resting right on the paint of the vehicle, something you'd typically want to avoid, so we're going to use a tie down anchor. This would just be something that fits into basically any seam or body gap on your vehicle, and will give you a good connection point.The hook is going to go on the anchor side. The rope, we're going to run through the handle itself, then we can knot it to secure it. Any excess that you might have, you just tidy up. Now we'll do the same thing here for the rear. Once we have everything secure, we'll be ready to hit the road.That will complete our look at the Rola-J-Rac, part number 59912.


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