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 Post subject: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 4:24 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2011 10:17 pm
Posts: 18
Location: Northwest Florida
I am a recent TI owner and enjoying it very much. No surprise to the readers of this forum. I have noted there is considerable interest in car topping the TI. I don't suggest car topping a TI is the best or preferred method for anyone. However, for my wife and I it was our best alternative. The car on which we transport the TI is our full-time towed vehicle behind a motor home.

The design premise was, how do we travel with the boat car topped and get it down/up without risking injury (we are not young/strong) and not damage or stress the boat in the process.

We came up with a concept I think would work on any large car but it is ideal for a pick-up truck with ladder racks. In our case we drive a Jeep Wrangler Unlimited (i.e., 4 door).

1) We mounted an aftermarket rack system functioning as the foundation for the other components. The rack ties into the frame, not the body.
2) Then I mounted fixed for/aft rails on each side that measure approx 10' long.
3) Three Hobie saddles are mounted between the rails. A fourth support (Kayak Pad) supports the bow.
4) Removable rail extensions are fastened to the fixed rails extending to the rear of the Jeep. These have supporting legs which are also removable. This creates a "track" that extends approx 10' beyond the Jeep's rear bumper.
5) The boat is hoisted up to a rig I call the "travel lift" that manually can be moved for/aft on the rails. When the "travel lift" is furthest aft its bow is clear of the jeep.
6) The boat is lifted or lowered by a pair of lifting tackle, one on each side, attached to the Hobie Dolly saddle in place of the wheels (the handle is not attached at this point). The lifting tackle has 4:1 advantage so little is needed in the way of muscle power to raise or lower the boat.
7) Once almost down to the ground the scupper cart is inserted at the stern and beach wheels are put on the Hobie Dolly (which is also the lifting saddle)and we are ready to go.

This is a two person operation and is not without some effort. While no single part of this process requires significant strength there are a lot of steps. It takes us about an hour to raise or lower the boat. This does not include rigging the boat or stocking it with supplies which must be done regardless of how you move the boat.

For us this works since we typically pull into some locale and stay for a week or more. So, we do not lower and raise the boat in the same day we also use the boat. That would be downright exhausting for us.

This is hard to imagine without photos and there are many details that we worked out to make the system work for us. I have photos of the rig but I do not have a way to link them to this note. If anyone is interested let me know and I can e-mail the photos to you. Alternatively, if anyone volunteers to post the pics I can send them the photos.

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Martin Hochberg
Tandem Island 2012


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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 5:04 am 
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Joined: Mon Mar 12, 2012 6:51 am
Posts: 4
I think jeep is the perfect truck for you hobie! It's better to have a truck fitted with car topping instead of a regular sedan coz it has all the space needed on top.

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Move it green
Jeep Wrangler parts


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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2012 7:09 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 10:43 am
Posts: 397
Location: Long Island NY
send me the photo's and I will post them for you

send to

Alan (AT SYMBOL) ITNNETWORKS (DOT) C0M

and put "HOBIE TI PICS" in the title

If the files are big, I need you to keep the sum of all photo's in a single email to under 15 meg. If this is a problem, just send me multiple emails with a single file/photo attached to each

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Alan W.
'07 Hobie Adventure Island #1
'07 Hobie Adventure Island #2 Golden Papaya AI LadyJane
'06? Hobie Outback SUV


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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Wed Aug 22, 2012 12:15 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 02, 2011 8:48 am
Posts: 79
Location: Southwest Calif.
Thanks for doing this. I'm looking forward to seeing them as I have a Wrangler also.

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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 6:42 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 10:43 am
Posts: 397
Location: Long Island NY
sorry for the delay - I was unexpectedly out of the office yesterday (I wish it was because I bagged work to go sailing ... :? )


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Alan W.
'07 Hobie Adventure Island #1
'07 Hobie Adventure Island #2 Golden Papaya AI LadyJane
'06? Hobie Outback SUV


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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 6:57 am 
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Joined: Wed Oct 19, 2011 6:02 am
Posts: 322
Location: Cape Coral, FL
That is the coolest thing ever, a gantry crane! Way to go. How long does it take to set up the travel lift frame work? I assume the one hour you mentioned was setup and unloading or loading and take down.

Cheers,
Jesse

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2011 Golden Papaya TI with a 250 square foot spinnaker!
also a more manageable 100 square foot spinny...
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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 3:20 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 18, 2010 2:31 pm
Posts: 2568
Location: Kailua 96734
OMG!! :shock: THAT was worth the wait.


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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 7:53 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2011 10:17 pm
Posts: 18
Location: Northwest Florida
It takes about 60-70 minutes to get the framework off the jeep, set up and get the boat lowered to the ground. After that you are loading and launching the TI as you would normally do, loading/launching is not included in the 60-70 minutes. Once the boat is brought back to the Jeep and unloaded it takes about the same length of time to raise and secure the boat atop the jeep and return the framework to its transport position.

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Martin Hochberg
Tandem Island 2012


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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 10:11 am 
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Joined: Mon May 02, 2011 8:48 am
Posts: 79
Location: Southwest Calif.
What an amazing contraption !!! :shock:

I've often thought about the possibility of getting a small jib crane, mounting it on a small pedestal on the back bumper and just lifting the kayak and then swiveling it around and placing it on the roof rack.

Image

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 4:20 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2010 2:06 am
Posts: 309
that is 1 big unit :D

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Paul, Rebecca & Stephanie


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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 6:01 am 
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Joined: Mon May 04, 2009 5:02 am
Posts: 803
Location: Sydney - Parramatta
Crikey :shock:
I'm impressed.

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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 12:50 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 05, 2011 1:58 am
Posts: 1246
Location: Forster, NSW, Australia
Now THAT is different!!!


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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2014 12:59 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jan 13, 2014 10:09 pm
Posts: 11
Location: NW Florida
PassWind wrote:


Image

Did I see you in Destin,Fl at Smiths Antique Mall on Tuesday? :D


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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2014 6:20 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 11, 2011 10:17 pm
Posts: 18
Location: Northwest Florida
1cjk,

Good catch. Yes that was me.

Wife and I are in the process of moving to Pensacola (currently full-time in a motor home). Since the last posting you saw I have modified the boat rack to make it easier and quicker to get it on and off the Jeep. However, I went to the dark side and now use a small 12V winch to lift or lower the boat. This is a violation of my keep-it-simple approach but it has been working well. Soon I will be transitioning to a trailer since the boat will be towed behind the Jeep or behind a MUCH smaller motor home.

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Martin Hochberg
Tandem Island 2012


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 Post subject: Re: Car Topping a TI
PostPosted: Sat Apr 05, 2014 3:47 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 20, 2008 6:18 am
Posts: 1039
Location: sarasota,fl
Salty-dawg:
I actually built a jib crane to load our TI onto the top of our Yukon Denali after pulling some muscles in my back. I ended up only using it twice, then gave up on it (it was much easier and faster to just hoist the boat up manually.
I have one of those t bar hitch mounts ( I really recommend them).
What I did was remove the t off the top, put some 2 inch galvanized pipe in the end with an elbow and a four ft length of pipe sticking out horizontally. I had to brace the elbow with an alum bracket. I then put a pulley on the elbow and on the end so I could run the boat winch cable up and overhead. We would hoist the revo up first on the right side, then the TI on the left side, after loading on the roof I would strap the AMA's on top of the TI (independent of the roof rack straps).
I'm not a big guy at all and am in my 60's and feel it is much easier to load on the roof than our oasis ever was ( we traded our oasis in for the TI, actually I injured my back loading the Oasis on the roof (not the TI)).
We are campers (like Atango ) and when we have the camper or when we go to our Key West house (no garage and no place to store a trailer) we have to rooftop instead of using the boat trailer.
Actually there is a quick and easy way to load a TI onto the roof, ( I think roadrunner posted how to do it easily), you are never lifting any more than 50 lbs. What I do is put the scupper cart in and walk the boat up to the center behind the car, I place an old carpet under the back of the boat, I then walk the bow up next to and along side the car about even with the rear tire. I then lift the bow up and onto my head then walk hand over hand under the boat until it is high enough to lay on the T-bar. I then center the bow ( I have a couple safety brackets that I attach to the T-bar to prevent the boat from sliding off the side of the T-bar. I then walk behind the boat, lift the back and slide the boat forward onto the T-bar and roof racks of the Denali. I usually just place a pool noodle on the roof near the back and the TI rolls nicely on the pool noodle. On short trips I just strap the TI down to the roof racks and the T-bar (the T-bar is rated at 500 lbs and supports the majority of the weight). We don't do anything else on short trips, on long trips or if we plan to have the kayak up there for more than a week or two (they are sometimes up there all summer), I typically put pool noodles along the sides before strapping down (to even out the load), and also add a V strap on the bow (to each kayak) to keep them from blowing sideways on the highway. We literally have a couple hundred thousand miles on our vehicles (we are on our 3rd Denali now) hauling kayaks all over the country. All my 3 sails fit into the Hobie sail bag, and it is slid in next to the TI. It's quick and fast (about 2 minutes to get the kayaks on or off the roof (rigging that jib crane and loading the boats using that took about 30 minutes, that's why I abandoned it)) and I always load the boats myself every single weekend (sometimes 2-3 times per weekend, and when down in Key West I load and unload daily) all year round, we've been doing this since 2006.
During the last year when local in Sarasota, I typically just use my Harbor Freight trailer ($140 bucks at Harbor freight) and store the boat fully rigged in the garage. I just hook it up, go out sailing, come home rinse it off and store it all rigged in the garage (takes all of ten minutes), in my opinion that's the way to go if you can (a trailer). It's the hour of getting all the pieces out of the car and setting up the TI (putting the AKA bars in, the AMA's on, lacing the tramps, putting the seats in, unpacking the sails, getting all the gear stowed, that is all very time consuming when car topping, which as Atango points out is the downside to car topping.
Another point I want to make about car topping is the toll it places on your vehicle when you kayak in salt water. We rusted out the roof on our denali and had to have it replaced, car topping our kayaks from salt water (we mostly do salt water these days (now living in south florida and the keys), when we lived up north and traveled, where we were doing mostly fresh water we never had a problem (just a word of warning...).
Hope this helps

Here is a pic of our rig all ready to go down to our Key West place (about 300 miles), notice the Tbar on the back I got our from Amazon for about $80 bucks, one of our best purchases ever. (that's my wife's pride and joy beach cruiser bike on the back)
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Bob


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