Most Recent Reviews
There is some flexibility in the setup when it comes to the spacing between the wall, and the straps. This was really handy since it enabled me to position the two straps exactly the right distance apart to ensure the straps would be under the kayak bulkheads helping to reduce the chance of hull deformation. Due to the concern of hull deformation, I didn't use the included straps, since they were only one inch wide and the buckle didn't seem very sturdy. When hanging a kayak you want a wide strap to spread the load and prevent a deformed hull. I solved the problem by getting a beefy 2 inch wide towing strap with built in loops on each end. I cut it in two, made properly sized straps, tied the hoist to the handy built in towing strap handles, and used them instead.
There is also a little black guide that the front and rear lines go though on their way to the block and tackle. After experimenting, I chose not to use it since all though it guided the lines, it also cause some binding and friction as the lines rubbed on it on their way though it. I also bought a tie down cleat you would use for a flagpole. This let me tie off the hoist line as a back up safety measure, should the lock on the block and tackle possibly fail some day. I’d rather not find my kayak resting on my car.
Overall it's a great product, easy to use and flexible with the setup. My only gripe is with the included straps. With my boat weighing close to the max that this model hoist could handle, I just didn't feel the straps were sturdy enough, or wide enough, so I replaced them, with something stronger and wider.
Over all, the PFD is worth the price.
I've yet to roll the kayak to see if the skirt implodes or not though, so I can't say much about that. It can get a bit warm under the skirt, which can be a little uncomfortable if the temp is really high. I've considered getting the Seals Tropical Tour skirt for those occasions since it breaths better, though according to others isn't as water resistant. That said though, a puddle can form on the skirt and it won't readily soak right though keeping you dry.
Overall a nice skirt.
My Thule Aero Blade bars and the car's roof line make getting any rack, including the 835 Pro, perfectly lined up a challenge. Strapping a boat that is not very deep in the stern, can be tricky. The straps go around the top of the J rack like most J racks, but, are required to wrap around the end of the base the boat sits on, actually keeping the strap from contacting the boat on the base of the rack, leaving the boat to move. Look at the picture on the box or the Thule site to see what I'm talking about. I ended up getting another set of straps so that I could wrap another strap around the boat and work it down and around the base of the J rack to snug in the stern of my boat, and give extra security up front.
Once on and adjusted, the boat won't go anywhere. The rack comes with two straps and a bow and stern tie down. I added two more straps to keep the boat still, and for more stability considering the short span between racks my car provides. It's a nice rack, but remember, some boats might not fit as well as others.
Overall a great way to bring your water with you while you're out.