Name: DuncanMcDonuts

Most Recent Reviews

This review is for the 897XT. I've been using it for a month and it lets me load my 70# tandem SOT easily onto my SUV. The Hullavator works as described, lifting about 40 lbs of the kayak for you. Without it, my wife and I would have a hard time lifting the kayak 6' high to rack on our SUV. The Hullavator makes it almost effortless to raise the kayak onto the roof rack.

Some downsides, though. The 897XT specs state it works with 36" wide hulls. With my 34" wide tandem, it wouldn't fit if you installed the cradles in the metal track. I needed to tighten the cradles on the outer plastic of the track, without the washer so the bolt would be long enough to thread into the square nut. When I rest the kayak hull down, as standard, the hull's sides doesn't rest on the plastic well and the hull mid is pressed on the metal track, which will damage the plastic over time. Placing the hull up makes the kayak fit better within the cradles and the top sides rest on the rubberized plastic well.

Another con is that the arms don't lock down well when you bring the arms down to remove the kayak. If you don't lock the arm, it'll violently swing up once you remove the kayak. Thule also could've made the metal mounting brackets with more rust-resistant metal. After a month, I can tell the metal will start to rust, and it's common for the mounts to be well rusted in 2-3 years.

Overall, I'm really happy with the Hullavator as it makes transporting a kayak super easy. For the price, Thule could've made a few improvements, though. paddlemaniac's review is worth a read as its very detailed.