Hey all, just got a 2015 wrangler unlimited hard top and I’m thinking the yakima rain gutter system. Anyone have any experience with it? Any different suggestions? I want to make it easy on and off because when we get there I want to pull the top and do a little beach driving as well. T
Read the Yakima guide lines for roof rails, etc… on their website. Better yet call them. Yakima reps. will lead you to purchasing the correct rack for your jeep.
If you google “yakima rain gutter wranglerforum” you’ll find some discussion, mostly positive. But you also find people saying that there have been cases of cracks in the fiberglass hardtop.
Personally, I would never use the rain gutters on the Freedom panels, that just seems like a weak attachment point. You should be fine but what happens when you make a mistake in attaching them? And how will you take the panels off if they are connected?
Have you pulled your hard top off yet? The top on the 2 door is pretty heavy, I can’t imagine what a 4 door top is. This is not something you want to do at the beach, this is something you want to want to do in the driveway.
We have a 2 door and didn’t have the Yakima option. We went with an external rack and then mounted a traditional kayak rack to that.
Getting boats up there is hard work. We use a Rhino-Rack Universal Side Loader to get our boats up. I keep on meaning to make a video on how we do it. The real trick is to use a long piece of rope attached to the end of the boat on the ground and the jeep so it doesn’t slide when you lift half the kayak. That’s probably not very clear but don’t worry, it only applies when you have the Side Loader.
I think the best solution is an external cage, a traditional rack, a side loader, and in your case, either a soft top or giving up on the idea of going topless. We have the Garvin rack and you can lower your top by undoing 2 bolts and swinging it up and out of the way. But in our case we can’t do that, the kayak racks interfere with that mechanism.
And yes, this isn’t cheap, but what do you think Jeep stands for? Just Empty Every Pocket. And you thought kayaks were expensive…
And if you’re not going far and don’t care about your boat, you can always do this.
That’s a million pound tandem up on Sport Racks and some straps. We didn’t have far to go, we lived at the beach.
I can attest to that 2-door roof being godawful heavy. It took both of us to man/womanhandle it. Some bad words were said (looks at NotThePainter sshhh). Take the freedom panels off. Take the doors off. Enjoy it that way. It’s almost as good as topless.
I used to own a Wrangler Sport 2-dr and agree a thousand times over that removing or installing the hardtop is notNotNOT!!! something you will do casually. It requires at least two strong adults of at least average height to do. After struggling with it a few times, we used to recruit a neighbor to help also.
The hardtop for the longer Unlimited would be even more of a beast.
Best rack system would not rely on the top at all. Yes, these systems are made. KargoMaster is one maker.