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Submitted: 01-30-2006 by aorourke
I have used a couple of other kayak carrier roof systems, including the Thule glide & set, and Hully rollers/saddles. I needed to buy a set of side-loaders so that I could carry two kayaks on my new, but small 4-door car. I decided to buy the Malone carrier because of the good reviews on Rutabaga's site, and certainly the price was right. They were pretty easy to install, and sit very securely on my Thule bars. The boat can sit on its side unsupported while you attach the straps, although I would be careful in gusty weather. When I loaded my Chilco onto the carrier, I noticed that I did not have great contact between boat and saddle bottom, so I strapped some closed cell foam to the saddles, which quickly solved the problem. I've travelled some distance with the saddles, including freeway travel, and they appear to be very, very sturdy. I don't have a long roofline - average for a hatchback, I guess. Before attaching my bow and stern lines, I was pleased to see that I get very little movement of the kayak in the saddles when I check by pushing and pulling on the kayak. With the bow and stern lines attached, it really does feel rock-solid. I'd probably give it a ten, except I had to add the foam - not a big deal, really.