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PostPosted: Sun Dec 25, 2011 11:04 am 
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Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 9:30 am
Posts: 54
Location: Newark DE & Miramar FL
When we purchased our TI we got the Hobie Trailex trailer for it, and it works great for long-distance hauls - but now that we're keeping our TI in south Florida, we've found that many great kayak launch sites are not trailer-friendly. We've also been considering getting a motorhome when we retire, in which case the TI could be car-topped on a "toad" vehicle, but surely couldn't be dragged behind it in a compound-trailer configuration.

So here is our approach to car-topping, for the benefit of anyone else who may be considering it. The assumption is that you have a vehicle with a 2" trailer hitch receiver and a roof rack with crossbars (in our case a 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee).

Materials needed:
1 pair of Hobie TI cradles
1 Extend-A-Truck hitch-mounted support bar
1 pair of Yakima bow & stern tie-downs
1 48" piece of 2x4 lumber
6' of foam 1" pipe insulation
4 ratcheting tie-down straps
bag of 24" heavy-duty cable ties
6 1/4" SS flat washers
3 1/4"x1.5" SS lag screws
2 1/4"x1.5" SS bolts & lock nuts
1 1/4"x3.5" SS bolt & lock nut
electrical tape
Optional:
2 locking hitch receiver pins
1 alarmed motorcycle cable lock
2 magnetic taillights
Scotchlite reflective tape

The Extend-A-Truck unit mounts into any 2" hitch receiver. Simply bolt a Hobie TI cradle to top of the 48"-wide crossbar. Two of the ratchet straps are used to stabilize the upright, the reflective tape is optional.
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For the front unit, position both roof rack cross bars as far forward as possible and adjacent to each other; shape the ends of the 2x4 to fit, as needed (and possibly cut shorter than 48", depending on your vehicle); lag screw the 2nd Hobie cradle to the 2x4; pad the inner edges of the roof rack crossbars with the pipe insulation and secure with electrical tape [great stuff - no residue]; secure the 2x4 between the roof rack crossbars with 2 cable ties [new ones will be required for each installation -- cost ~ $1].
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To get the TI onto the roof, position the hull (with the mast secured to it) so the bow is alongside the rear cradle and overlapped such that, when lifted, it can sit on the cradle, and place a rubber mat under the stern to protect it and keep it from sliding [easy with 2 people; requires the use of some sort of cart if alone (or with a small 2nd person) -- we use the Hobie Heavy Duty cart inserted into the rear scuppers]. Then lift the stern of the TI, and slide it forward into position such that the rear scuppers are just behind the rear cradle; install the akas & amas; secure the assembled craft with the 2 remaining ratcheting tie-downs [one to the loops at the ends of the Extend-A-Truck crossbar, the other to the roof rack side bars just behind the front cradle] and the Yakima bow & stern tie-downs.
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The Yakima straps will prevent the TI from shifting rearward. To preclude any forward shifting under hard braking, tie it to the Extend-A-Truck upright via the rear scuppers, or [optional for greater security while parked] run an alarmed motorcycle cable lock through the scuppers and around the upright. Security can also be enhanced by installing the Extend-A-Truck unit using two locking receiver pins instead of the supplied items.
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Now you are ready to roll :P We've tested our setup at 70mph on the Florida Turnpike, and have found it to be very stable, with a fuel economy penalty of only about 2 mpg.
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One final suggestion: if you will be traveling at night, the visibility of your load can be increased by placing a pair of magnetic taillights atop the metal crossbar and underneath the rear cradle -- no way you won't be seen :)
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Merry Christmas to all, and to all, a good sail.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 25, 2011 2:52 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 08, 2009 5:06 am
Posts: 1553
Location: Lake Macquarie NSW AUSTRALIA
Very nice setup bluehen. Due to the price of cradles down this way, I decided to make my own. And my 4WD racks aren't as wide as yours so I used to stuff the Amas in the car rather than on. I also use a trailer but your right, that sometimes has it's limitations and problems. It's always nice to have 2 methods of getting to the water.

Love the lights. How did you decorate it for Christmas ?

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 25, 2011 5:09 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 9:30 am
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Location: Newark DE & Miramar FL
Quote:
Love the lights. How did you decorate it for Christmas ?


Wish I'd thought of that -- could have had our own little electric boat parade with an inverter and some LED lights. Something for next year! :mrgreen:


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 08, 2012 9:55 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 02, 2011 11:57 pm
Posts: 5
Now I know the things I need to put up to carry my boat on top of my jeep! It really looks complicated though, but hopefully I can figure it out...thanks to this one mate.


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 6:58 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2012 8:08 pm
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Location: Saskatchewan, Canada
Thanks for posting the great pictures, Blue Hen. We, too, have a Jeep GC (same generation as yours). We are trying to decide on the TI or the Oasis. We have to car-top, but we have the added problem of having minimal rear clearance because we tow a travel trailer. We are considering the logistics of adding a front receiver and a Thule goalpost at the front of our Jeep, and adding cradles as you did. The Oasis is indeed easier, but we'd love a TI.

Thanks for the "inspirational" post!
Lisa

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Jeep Grand Cherokee
Airstream International trailer


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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 5:40 pm 
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Joined: Thu Apr 12, 2012 8:08 pm
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Location: Saskatchewan, Canada
We picked up our Hobie TI yesterday and we followed your instructions exactly. It was so stable in transport. Thanks for your awesome post. We kept the TI on the Jeep overnight because we were hoping to take her for a test drive today. No such luck. It has been cold and rainy all day. I think by buying this boat, we've ensured bad weather for the summer! Anyway, we unloaded it and wrapped it in a tarp and we'll hope for better weather soon.

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Paul and Lisa
Jeep Grand Cherokee
Airstream International trailer


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PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 7:57 am 
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Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2011 9:30 am
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Location: Newark DE & Miramar FL
I'm glad to hear that your rooftop transporting went well, hope you soon get a break in the weather. :P

The TI is so much fun!

Doug


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:39 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2012 4:45 pm
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anyone knows where I can buy Extend-A-Track thingy in Sydney, Australia? I've googled for it but all the pages are from US. Although I've seen similar racks on other cars. I have a trailer, but the limitations are numerous as I need to park in places where there are parking spots with tralers. This setup looks like a good solution


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 10:49 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 21, 2013 9:31 am
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Here is my new method of cartopping my AI fully rigged :)

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NulaHNMfznk&list=UU_jWcpkB4hK3RTY0RHd9ajg&index=2[/youtube]

Is there anything a Jeep can't do ;)

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 12:27 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 2:31 pm
Posts: 2659
Location: Kailua 96734
Brian9 wrote:
Is there anything a Jeep can't do ;)
:lol: Probably not. The real trick here is your aft wheel cradle. Can you show us more?


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 12:35 pm 
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Location: Ontario, Canada
That's pretty cool.

I wonder if my wife will let me put a winch on the front of her Kia. :?

The Jeep has been ruled out... something about gas mileage... I wasn't really listening. :roll:

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2013 10:35 am 
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Yeah I maybe should have mentioned that one of the key peices that I have found that helps me load the AI singlehanded is the aft wheel cradle...
http://www.rei.com/product/738003/quantum-engineering-stern-wheels-cart
I have attached a link to the same cart that I use, with the straps slightly modified to make it easy to snap on and off. I also use the Hobie scupper wheel cart to get to and from the water, but I find the aft wheel cart essential for cartopping the way that I do, and not be damaging the rudder or back of the boat. I'll make another video showing more as soon as this latest snow melts ;(

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