simple question: stern tie downs

I have a set of J-hooks for my roof and need to purchase tie downs. Is there any real quality difference between Thule and Malone Sentry? The Malone tie downs are half the cost and they look virtually identical. Dont want to a “pound foolish”.


Buy some appropriate line,
use the right knots, and no one will ever think of you as “pound foolish”.

Once you’ve done it a dozen times, you’ll find it’s faster, too.

mm hmm
(obviously neither of us have thule or yakima shares)

own both
I have sets of both the Thule and Malone tie downs – the Thule metal bits are a little bit beefier. That said, I’m not sure I consider them worth TWICE the cost.

However, I admit, if I am only loading one boat, I reach for the Thules. Same for the Thule blue roof straps. The materials just feel more substantial and ratchet smoother. Like the difference in hand tools between a Snap On socket ratchet and a Craftsman.

Looking at all my various kayak hauling straps and geegaws, the Thule bits are the ones I have owned the longest (nearly 10 years now) and used the most often, yet they look “healthier” now than other brands I’ve accumulated since. The webbing has faded several shades but I still feel like it runs more smoothly through the buckles and has more integrity than other straps in the arsenal.

I’m not a brand freak, but in this case I have to tip my hat to the Swedes.

I will agree. I prefer Thule tie downs and J-cradles over everyone else. Their web boat tie downs just seem better built than ANYONE else’s, and their plain blue bow/stern ropes are very high quality rope.

I don’t use any ratcheting bow/stern lines. Plain rope is easy, learn a few knots and your set. These lines should really be more to secure the boat if the boat straps/rack fails! Snug is as tight as they need to be :slight_smile: