Thule The Stacker (for Kayaks)

Anyone ever used one of these?

I recently purchased one, and it’s a great system to fit 2 kayaks onto my Jeep Grand Cherokee while still having room on the roof rack for other gear.

However, I am wondering if there’s anything that I can use to pad my crossbars from the kayaks. I know Thule sells the round bar pads, but those just don’t look like they have enough “grip” to them.

Anyone else have any ideas on what I can do to pad my bars and also provide some extra contact points with my kayaks when they’re loaded up?

Thank you

foam saddles
You could get the foam saddles that fit over the bars, and even cut them to fit the side of your boat if you wanted.

I tried that with my stacker, but actually found that I got a more secure load without them. The rubber on the stacker and load bars is plenty to prevent scratches, and the foam just introduced more wiggle into the load.

I have a set
And I am very pleased with them. However, they are only meant to carry plastic WW kayaks. You could also carry plastic rec boats or touring boats. But when I carry our fiberglass sea kayaks I use saddles.

not just for plastic
I quite happily carry my glass boat on a Thule stacker, and I know some others who do too. Two reasons - 1) I’m cheap, and 2) I’ve had frustration with the thule saddles. They just never seem to fit the boats right, especially those felt glide pads at the rear.

I’d say the only disadvantage to the stacker is that you can’t load it as easily as a J-style cradle, or hull saddles. But once it’s on, it’s plenty secure, and safe for a glass boat.

My saddles are not Thule
They are Yakima, left over from my windsurfing days. I think they are better than current Yakima or Thule. They can be adjusted to fit the boats exactly and the padding is quite good. It is also really easy to put the boats up on the saddles. If I didn’t have them I don’t know which system I would use. I don’t worry about scratching my boats but I do want it to be easy to load and I want the boats held securely. And, yes, do it cheaply. There is nothing cheaper than continuing to use old equipment. :slight_smile:

easy fix
Foam pool noodles. Slit them lengthwise and fit them over the crossbars (and uprights). Wrap them in duct tape. Cheap, easy and provides additional grip.

Foam blocks
Most kayak shops carry the large foam blocks that work on roofs without racks. Take a look at these-

They’ll fit around your factory rack and compress when you tighten things down.

Thanks y’all
Well, I am so glad for all of the input I got here!!

Thank y’all!