Roof-rack for sea kayak


I’d like to purchase a kayak carrier for my Thule roof rack. Was thinking of going for a J-bar type. Any insights on the differences between the name brand J bars (Thule, Yakima, etc.) and others that I’ve seen advertised? (e.g. such as There is a huge price differential and I’m trying to figure out if it is justified. Thanks!


OK brand
I love the listing showing “97243 available

2,759 sold”. I’m trying to envision how big a volume of space that quantity fills. Sounds like the importer made a typo and made it 2 Shiploads rather than 1.

Thinner tubing than main brands. Width adjustable (sections sleeve and fasten with mount bolts) so be sure to adjust properly for your width kayak especially ifor composite construction. I’ve seen the tubing rust quicker than Thule. 1/3 the price of the Thule Hullaport.

I prefer the folding style like the Yakima JayLo or Hullaport PRO as my bars start at 6’2" in altitude already.

See you on the water,


The River Connection, Inc.

Hyde Park, NY

I have cheap J racks
The weak point I have noticed with all J racks is when you strap the boat to the Js, the mounting of the J to the cross bar allows wiggle. I loop the strap under the cross bar through the upper arch of the J and wrap the buckle end once around the top of the arch. The boat goes up next, and the free end of the strap over the boat,and around the cross bar inside the side rail. Bring up to the buckle, and secure. The loop around the arch keeps the boat tight against the J, and being secured to the bars the boat does not wiggle.

Other than the loop around the arch, and the boat being on its side, it is the way you secure a canoe to the bars.

I started with J-bars but
I still have my folding Thule J-bars but once I got a bigger and heavier kayaks I really hated J-bars. I much prefer racks that load from the back of the vehicle and slide the boat up. There are many types but there more money. There’s v saddles from a few manufacturers, Thule slipstream is a neat setup . I just picked up one of those used off Amazon. I also have a set of V saddles from Oak Orchard.

J-bars aren’t too bad if you get the load bar that slips into the main rack bar that way you pull that bar out and pick up just half the boat. Both Yakima and Thule make those BUT not if you have any of the aero type bars just the square or round bars.

I have Jsbon my Yakima bars. but also
have cradles. Depending on the height of your vehicle, J rscks can be a real PITA.

cheap j racks
I have some of the cheap J-racks that I leave on my trailer ( under car port ) I use them ONLY for local transport to nearby lake. Long distance or interstate travel brings out saddles on roof of my car. I don’t like trailers or J-racks at interstate speed but do like convenience of loading on trailer for local use.