Slipperify My Seawings Rack

Last fall I switched from Thule saddles to Malone Seawings for kayak transport. I like the Malones a lot, they do a great job securing the kayak. But, I have a hard time loading the kayak, which I usually do from the rear of the vehicle. I get the bow on the rear carrier and then slide the boat up onto the roof.

The Seawing has two ribbed, rubber strips running from wing tip to wingtip that do a great job at keeping the boat from slipping. That’s fine on the front bar, but I want to be able to slide the boat on the rear bar. I’m going to void my warranty by removing the rubber strips and attach, something, somehow, on which the kayak slides well.

What material do you suggest that I can attach to the Seawing over which a kayak can easily slide?

I use foam blocks on my Thule rack, and made slippery covers out of cheap indoor/outdoor carpet. I used plastic zip-ties like giant sewing stitches to hold the carpet in place. Maybe that could work for you too.

The carpet idea looks good but boat bunk carpet may stand up to the weather better. Heavy boats slide on it all the time. Shouldn’t be hard to find at a marine store or online.

A number of manufacturers use self adhesive felt to pad their saddles. Available at many hardware stores.

Also available at the DIY mothership, 2" wide by 1/4" thick polyester felt seems about right, probably better than wool:

adhesive-back strips | McMaster-Carr

Thanks for the great suggestions, which thus far were to no avail. I was in a hurry, and used what I had around.

First, I voided my warranty by peeling the rubber strips off the Seawings. The strips laid within 1/4” grooves, so the surface was uneven. I used Shoe Goo to glue a piece of carpet onto the Seawings. I cleaned the Seawings with alcohol before applying the glue. Clamped it all together and waited a day prior to use. Why Shoe Goo and carpet? They were in the shop.

The result, thus far, are good. It’s easy to slide the kayak up onto the racks. The boat stays firmly in place once tied down. I’m wondering about how the carpet will hold up to the weather—it’s not outdoor carpet. But, so far, I’m happy with it.

Thanks for the suggestions and it’s good to know those other solutions are available, since I could be redoing this if the weather destroys the carpet.