Rollerloader or hullyroller

I am trying to figure out the best system for cartopping a 16 foot kayak solo. I would like to be able to be more independent in moving my boat. I am a short woman (5’2"), with a tall minivan. Apologies for reintroducing this topic…I read all the archives I could find, but can’t find much about the rollerloader, and am wondering how it compares to the hullyrollers. Does anyone have experience with either of these systems?

My van has an existing factory rack, and I would prefer to work with that. I know I can use the Hullyroller/Mako saddle combo with adapters. I cannot use the Yakima boatloader with my roof rack. If I went with the rollerloader, would it be better to still use saddles, or should I just go with foam blocks on my current rack? Until I can find a way to get the kayak up and down alone, I am very limited in where I am able to go. Thanks!

I assume most of you have seen the hullyrollers, here is a link to the rollerloader:

I use both
I’ve got the Hullyrollers on top of my Subaru Forester, and I use the Rollerloader to get the boat up to the roof level without scratching the paint on my car (at the top of the rear liftgate). I’m 5’ 7" and I would have a lot of trouble loading the boat without the use of the Rollerloader. I wrap the stern of the boat with a towel so that I can set it down on the pavement before I start to roll it up to the roof. Just be careful so that the boat doesn’t slide out of the roller wheels.

I’ve been very happy with the Rollerloader system. I used to try protecting the trunk lid on my old Honda Civic using towels and blankets, but I ended up scratching the paint. I’ve had no problems since I got my Subaru and started using the Rollerloader. I’ve not tried using the Rollerloader as a set of wheels, but they look like they would work fine for that purpose, too.


thanks for the input
Thanks for the reply Scott! Do you still feel you “need” the Hullyrollers when you use the rollerloader? Is it a case of the rollerloader being better than the Hully, or more that the combination is the best choice?

Already had the Hullyrollers
I already had the Hullyrollers when I switched my rack system from the Civic to the Forester. I bought the Rollerloader so that I could get the boat up on the roof without scratching the paint on the new car. I’ve wondered whether the Hullyrollers are really necessary. My guess is that you could probably use a regular saddle on the rear of the rack system.

I have the Mako saddles on the front of the rack system. I scratched the hull of my boat for the first three years by sliding it across unpadded Mako saddles. About two years ago, I bought the optional felt pads sold by Yakima. These adhere to the Mako saddles and have eliminated the problem of scratching the hull.

My wife is 5’4" and she uses both to get her boats on and off the car solo.

I use the rollerLoader on my trailblazer with foam blocks. It saved my neck and back from straining with my WS 145T @ 65lbs. The RoolerLoader works great as a kayak cart also going down my driveway to the car, and to the boat ramp. Price is a concern but so is the trips to the Chiropractor if you don’t have a rolloerloader. The customer service is great also.

various rollers
Thanks for the photo essay! Helps to see it in action. I am going to try a combo of a homemade rollerloader, and hullyrollers…don’t know yet how this will work out. Thanks for all the input!

On of my many daughters…
is 4’-11" and has a Toyota pick up with a fiberglass top on it.

She uses the hully-roller in the rear and the saddles in front, and loads a 14 foot plastic yak by herself.

She is quite happy with her setup.



roller loader from Amgansett
A friend of mine has one of the loader rollers and due to her high reccommendation for it, I purchased one also.

A surprising conclusion
Well, I tried my homemade rollerloader (made of galvanized pipe, elbows and wheels from the hardware store) in conjunction with the hullyrollers. It was quite an experience. On the first attempt, the hullys were so hard to roll, that the boat went off center, and at that long length, I lost control. Thank God it was a plastic boat, or I’d be pretty bummed right now. I’m sure the bruises will fade over time. I used some WD40 on them, and then they rolled much better. Was able to get the kayak up and across the minivan, but it was really too high off the ground for me…harder yet to get it down again! The Hullys and mighty mount adapters added an extra 6 or 7 inches. At that height, the underside of the boat was nearly out of my reach even when I was standing on a milk crate. Then I tried my “fake rollerloader” with just a beach towel above to slide across the roof. That was easier than the Hullys. Last, I tried just a beach towel, and that was the easiest of all. Thanks for all your input. The Hullys would probably be great for a taller person, and/or shorter vehicle. I can see why people enjoy the rollerloader, and I am sure the real one is a better design than my homemade version…just not sure I could justify the cost. Perhaps a beach towel with a couple of cheap foam “kayak cradles” will be the answer for me.

pool noodles
try a coupleof pool noodles on the roof to protect the paintand roll your kayak across.