For longer life and less damage, it's better to purchase a manufactured
roof rack that cradles the shape of the boat. These do tend to be expensive
and there are some homemade designs that are just as good. But something
is better than nothing!
Plastic and glass laminate boats fare
better (but are heavier to lift onto the racks) than Kevlar® boats
when cinched down too tight. People don't realize that Kevlar® material
is much stronger and more flexible than the gelcoat bonded to it, so
it's advisable to tighten down, but don't overdo it, or cracks in the
gelcoat may occur.
Always tie a bow line from the boat to your vehicle's bumper
(don't forget to tie both ends). A lot of damage can be
done when a kayak flies off the roof and ends up on the road-Oops! Funny--No!
If you are concerned with rope or straps chafing the deck from the
vibration of the vehicle, use soft webbing straps or some padding under
the ropes. The chafing causes worn stripes across your kayak, which
are unsightly but only cosmetic.
to Live By: Always make sure to
tie up loose rope ends and check the job before driving off.
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