Malone HandiRack Inflatable Roof Rack

Does anyone have experience with the Malone inflatable roof rack? Does it work OK? How long does it take to install? Is it a pain to put on and take off? Will it safely transport 50-60 lb. kayaks on freeways? Does it cause damage to the roof? Any input would be appreciated. Thanks!

Dun’t really trust it, but,
iffin’ de young lady would demo it fer me ah’d coiytenly coonsider it…

Check out de video!


about 4 months ago
same question was asked.

Borrowed one until I could get a rack installed. Worked just fine, installed in about 4 minutes. I had a single 75lbs boat on it and didn’t have any trouble. I would recommend it, but only as a second option to a true roof rack which are better in many ways.

Boat loaded:

Two bow lines and two stern lines are definitely required to keep the boat from moving.

Movie of the rack in action:

I bought the Malone HandiRack
about a month ago and have used it successfully on my Honda Accord Coupe.

To prevent scratches on my paint from the inflatable pieces…I went to Wal-Mart and bought some of that soft, rubberlike, non-adhesive, non-slip shelf/drawer liner material and cut it to fit between the inflatable racks and the top of my car. Keeps the racks from shifting, too.

I’m on my second set but won’t
buy a third. The price has gone from about $30 to $99 and quality has gone down. The newer ones split the case if left inflated in the sun and one tube blew out. I’ve used them for years with two boats at highway speeds, mostly with one handirack on the truck cab and a t-bar in the hitch receiver. The only complaint is that when it rains they drip inside the vehicle.

Good luck


Before I store them away when I get to a launch site…and if it’s warm outside (b/c it usually is here in Texas!)…that I release a bit of air from the bladders to compensate for expanding air due to the heat.

When my Handirack is stored in my trunk when not in use, I fully deflate the air bladders. Seems to be working for me so far.

just bought a set
to take to Brazil. Friends and relatives cars don’t have racks so this seems to be a perfect alternative. Only real downside woudl be that they would leak into the car by virtue of the straps when it rains but you can create a low point using a piece of string that would divert most of that while stationary.

I like the attachment points right on the rack itself and also agree that just like foam blocks, you will need to have front and rear tiedowns for bigger boats.

Hey they are better than nothing and can do double duty as a luggage rack if you position them a little closer together.


Don’t buy one yet. Since I’m planning on marrying the girl in the video maybe I can get you a discount.

Split Tube

Please call 1-800-295-0042 and we will arrange for your HandiRack to be replaced.

Thank you for your continued support of this product.

Technical Assistance


Great Customer Service
I spoke to the Larry at Malone yesterday. Not only did he offer to replace the set that split, he offered to replace the first set that started leaking around the valves after 3 or four years of frequent use. Even more impressive is that Malone was not the distributor at the time I bought the first set. That is a first class operation.

Trust me I know good customer service…I paddle a QCC ;o)>



the leak is not just the low point…it
is also that i seriously doubt if those are water resistant webbing straps…water will get wicked up in between the fibers of the webbing and come in that way all the time…more so than just water running down the strap…

and there is no cure…except for water resistant webbing which has the spaces filled in…

Now THAT is going above and beyond! Kudos to Larry and company.

I received two brand new sets of racks
today to replace the two sets, I had returned. So Malone does stand behind their products, that is worth a lot.

They were a class act all the way Larry was very friendly when I spoke to him. They sent a tracking number as soon as the racks were shipped so I knew they were coming. I was pretty satisfied with their product before. Now that I know they’ll stand behind their product like they have I’d recommend them anytime.



Hey Randy, You Owe Me One Of Them
Literally, for having started this post that led to your receipt of the 2 new racks. Actually, I ended up ordering one and should receive it in a few days. I hope to get some good use out of it. Happy paddling.

Thanks MM!
I agree that I never would have gotten them otherwise.

I considered them just worn out and well beyond what I’d expect a warranty to cover so I had never pursued it.

How about the hearty thanks from a fellow kayaker and if you come to Missouri I’ll take you boating ;o)>



You Are Welcome Randy
If I’m ever in Missouri I’ll take you up on the offer.

I have one and it works great
I bought it to use while traveling with rental cars and rental boats.

I used it in Canada on a rental Chevy Impala and carried two Boreal Designs 17 foot kayaks. We drove at Freeway speeds of about 70 mph. Bow and stern lines were necessary and I added a third strap that went around each boat as well.

I would buy this again in a heartbeat.

Soak some SeamGrip into the strap,
just for a short segment near the wicking entry point. It will stop the wicking, but the strap will remain somewhat flexible.

Handiract review
I do like it. It actually works. I have used it with a Heritage Featherlite Angler - It does only weigh 30 lbs, but it seems as if it will handle much more. The only issue is you better have your car completely clean or the friction from the weight of the canoe/kayak rubbing on my nice black paint was not too nice on my new car. I tried it again with a fleece blanket underneath and it seemed fine. You definately need to make sure it is tight and you have it positioned correctly on hte roof. I found this out when I was going 50MPH and the back of the kayak was bouncing off the back window, it had not been positioned right and not tight eough and was standing up pretty high. After finding the correct fit it worked fine. It is very easy to use and set up. just lay it in the position, run the strap thru the car and tighten it. I use rachet straps to secure the kayak to the rack. Probably good to run a bungy cord to the front to hold it down too. Overall works great and easy to use, but not the best for your paint job (but my car is black??)

Bungies and ratchet straps are the worst
things to use to strap anything down. The ratchets can deform your boats very easily and bungies don’t hold tight, they stretch and then break!

Use cam lock straps or ropes. Personally I use the cam lock straps.