I'll skip the background on the assumption that you've looked up Thule's…
I'll skip the background on the assumption that you've looked up Thule's description. The fold-down process is indeed pretty slick, although I wonder about long-term durability. Integrating these with the Aero bars using the T-track is even slicker, and provides the lowest profile I have ever seen when folded. (and with the black bars, the coolest setup I have seen) They're pretty easy to put on / take off with the T-track install also, which is nice. The padding material is a bit "sticky", so don't plan to do much sliding around when loading - which is kind of the point, since they are supposed to hold the boat in place. But you're basically going to have to set the boat in approximately the right place from the get-go.
Other than the price, no real complaints. They do the job well and look really good.
I've been using these since I first got my Kayaks in 2001…
I've been using these since I first got my Kayaks in 2001 and they have always been invaluable in carrying my kayaks on 4 different vehicles. This is a quality product and has always made life easy with out 17'Necky sea kayaks.
The Thule Hullaport is a great rack. This rack and included tie…
The Thule Hullaport is a great rack. This rack and included tie downs give you every thing you need to secure your kayak. The J-rack provides secure support for the boat. Racheting bow and stern tie downs are included. These racks fit factory installed racks on SUVs. The learning curve to get the boat on the racks on a Ford Expedition was a little steeper than expected. Just remember to feed the tie downs trough the top of the rack before loading the boat. If you are not tall, you may need a step stool to get the boat on a large SUV. No problems on the first road trip of over 300 miles. I highly recommend this rack.
These are very good if roof space is a concern. You must…
These are very good if roof space is a concern. You must be very careful leaving an untied boat on these racks on a windy day, even for a minute (I learned the hard way when a small gust rolled my kayak to the driveway pavement, ripping my $500 side view mirror off in the process). A real positive is that you can hang them on a garage wall and use them for kayak storage (many Hullaport users overlook this). Another issue is that the rubber washers designed to keep the mounting screws from turning when tightening don't last for more than a few uses. DIY modification is required to correct this.
The Thule Hullaports are a great product! We mounted them on…
The Thule Hullaports are a great product! We mounted them on our Yakima roof-rack and have carried two Bic Sport kayaks around Southern California kayaking locations (lakes and the ocean). They are solid, stable, and support the kayaks quite well. I like the fact that they included the bow and stern tie-downs. Nice touch! Here’s a loading tip we discovered. We have a tall vehicle (a Honda Element) and, since we’re 5-8 and 5-7 respectively, we had a bit of trouble getting the kayaks up into the mounts at first. Until we tried turning the kayaks upside-down and kind-of rolling them into the mounts. Worked great! Now we can attach the mounts and load both kayaks in under fifteen minutes. You can see pictures of our set-up at: http://www.annandave.com/long_beach/.
I highly recommend these mounts.
I got the Thule Hullaport from an online chain store for $109…
I got the Thule Hullaport from an online chain store for $109. It works exactly as advertised. I've read the early models from a couple of years ago had plastic parts that were suspect, but my version is very sturdy. It makes it much easier to load and unload either of my two kayaks. I like the straps and rope tie downs that come with it too. I would highly recommend these over foam blocks and straps.
We just purchased a set of Thule Hull A Ports to carry…
We just purchased a set of Thule Hull A Ports to carry my Necky Chelan or Gannet and my husband's Napali by Perception, 15' sit on top, on my Ford Taurus or his wagon. I purchased last years display model, however he had to wait for his to be ordered, so he got the newer version that comes with the tie down. I added my own touch to the system because I was a little frustrated at watching the little plastic tubing, that acts as a spacer between the metal plates, roll down the driveway. So, I added a rubber plumbing washer to hold the spacer in place. Mind you it does take a little work getting the washers on, nothing a little awl and haul can't do. Great system, great stability and very little friction felt inside the vehicle during travel time. It is definitely an improvement over using the foam pads we had before to stabilize our rigs. My husband's larger boat was getting warped in the hull during the haul. We can use it on whatever car model we want as long as it has a rack on it.
Have a very narrow surfski and have found the Hull-a-ports to be…
Have a very narrow surfski and have found the Hull-a-ports to be far and away the most stable way of carrying such a low volume boat. Also convenient when I switch to a sea kayak- no messing with the width of the cradles. I'm getting pretty concerned, however, about these reports of the nylon piece breaking off, and don't think I will trust the rack alone now. Easy solution- loop the strap or rope around the bar, then through the top metal loop, around the boat, around the bar again, and then tie off normally. Essentially use your bars rather than the rack for the tie-down. Works fine without front and rear ties.