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Luggage Rack Kayak Cradle

Updated on July 7, 2016

Make Your Own Kayak Cradles

Ordinary luggage racks are too flat for kayaks with their curved decks and hulls.
Ordinary luggage racks are too flat for kayaks with their curved decks and hulls.
In this cross-section the cut goes from the outside halfway through to the hollow core.
In this cross-section the cut goes from the outside halfway through to the hollow core.
Tape off the last foot to foot and a half of both ends of the noodles.  Cut the slit between the duct tape.
Tape off the last foot to foot and a half of both ends of the noodles. Cut the slit between the duct tape.
Wrap the slit in the noodles over the top of the luggage rack crossbars.
Wrap the slit in the noodles over the top of the luggage rack crossbars.
Zip tie the noodles in place as show so that the center will be lower than the ends. This makes the cradle.
Zip tie the noodles in place as show so that the center will be lower than the ends. This makes the cradle.
Here is what the noodles will look like on the car.
Here is what the noodles will look like on the car.
Bungee the kayak in place securely and you're ready to go
Bungee the kayak in place securely and you're ready to go

Quick and Easy Kayak Cartopper

Rigging a padded cradle for your kayak is easy if your SUV or car has a luggage rack.  All you need is 2 foam swim "noodles" with a hollow core and some duct tape, a knife and some zip ties.

The pictures are pretty self-explanatory, but this is basically what you do.  Cut the noodles to the width of the cartop luggage rack.  Duct tape about 12 to 18 inches on both ends of your noodles.  With your knife slit the noodle open, leaving the duct taped ends uncut.

open the cut and wrap it over the top of the luggage rack crossbars.  Zip tie it down as shown so the cut middle is lower than either end.  This creates a padded cradle for kayak to nest in.  Bungee cord it down and it should rest snugly on top of your SUV.

Tom

Materials

You ought to have all this stuff in your junk box in your garage. These are standard, jury-rigging materials that every boatman worth his salt ought to have hanging around. If you don't, pick these up at the store next time you're wandering through the hardware or children's swimming pool toys section. You'll be glad you did - especially with the fun noodles. They are wonderfully useful. My wife stuffs them in my recliner to keep me from dropping my laptop mouse down into the arms of the chair.Two swim noodles

  1. Zip ties
  2. Large sharp knife
  3. Duct tape (in case you're not too stead with a knife)

It's that simple, quick and easy and you can remove it when you're done if you don't want a lot of people asking why you've got fun noodles zip-tied to the top of your car.

Just sayin'
(c) 2015 by Tom King

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