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Reviews for Oak Orchard Super J Cradles


Rated: 7.75/10 Based On: 4 Reviews

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05-20-2005
Submitted by: ---
Rating: 9 of 10

     A follow-up to my earlier post.

It seems that I didn't have my J-Cradles correctly mounted on the Thule bars, hence my marking my own boat with the edges. Once I got contacted by Oak Orchard I re-aligned the cradle and it worked just great.

However, in the time it took me to get my answer back from Oak Orchard, I got replacement bolts for my old style Malone J cradles and got them working.

Hence I am selling my Oak Orchard J cradles as there are none on the market that can match the "old" style Malone J cradles for padding and ease of use.

Changing my rating to 9 as the 10 is reserved for the old Malone's.

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04-25-2005
Submitted by: ---
Rating: 5 of 10

     I purchased these Deluxe J-Cradles to fit my Thule bars, as I just bought a new Impex Outer Island and didn't have faith in the Thule J-Cradles regarding enough padding to protect my boat.

The Orchard J's arrived and noted that they were very heavy but also looked to be padded with soft rubber. Also noted that the rubber stopped short of running the full width of the cradle, stopping short of the plastic edges of the cradle.

I finally got to use them on my new boat and was disturbed to find that they left black marks on the hull of my new boat; and maybe due to the 2 hour trip, also slightly indented my fiberglass hull!!

The rubber padding compressed completely down to the level of the hard plastic-covered metal edges of the J and that is what made dents in my boat hull.

I have since scrubbed out the black marks (no small effort) and noticed when I waxed the hull that the indentations, however slight, are still there. I contacted Oak Orchard via email 5 days ago and still have not received a response to my questions/concerns.

In the meantime, I have read the previous post regarding adding 1/2" of minicell foam to the bottom of the "J" to keep the hull off the hard edges. So much for the "deluxe" padding to protect my new boat!

It seems as though more care should have been put into the design and testing of this product before selling it. The cradle themselves seem sound, but don't forget to add the extra padding!

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11-18-2004
Submitted by: WadeSend Email
Rating: 9 of 10

     I purchased the FIRST pair of OOC J Cradles! Then I wound up working for them! I have put somewhere north of 10,000 miles CARRYING BOATS on my OOC Js. Everything from whitewater boats, to two 16 foot poly boats to Nova Scotia. If you have a poly boat, the padding is fine. I also prefer the way they install and remove to the other brands, and how easy they are to fold down out of the way (Taller cars in parking garages WILL hit) - I would give them an 10 if they could be a lot better than the Yakima Js... I would say the OOC cradles are better for wider boats than the competition, especially whitewater boats, and people who will fold them down often, but some of the other brands do have better padding. I also like how the slots in the top 'hold' the strap while you fidget; Yakima and Thule, the strap just falls to the bottom!
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08-03-2004
Submitted by: RobSend Email
Rating: 8 of 10

     Just bought these after talking to Bill of "Oak Orchard" about the refinements of these cradles over others. I am very pleased with the purchase. Firstly, they are competitively priced with Thule and Yakima cradles. Second, they are superbly strong, and completely span the beam of my 22" sea kayak. This is valuable in that you can comfortably reach over the boat for the straps, which stay put when not in use. Also, the kayak will securely free-stand up against the cradle and won't fall over while you fiddle with the straps. Finally, the cradles attach easily to square or round bars with the same brackets. The only reason I did not give them a 10 is that they are only barely adequately padded in the bottom of the cradle. My solution was to add a layer of 1/2 inch minicell foam to the bottom with zip-ties. The factory rubber gaskets get so sqwashed under the weight of the kayak that the hull makes contact with the factory plastic edge protection. You're still not making contact with the stainless steel of the cradle, but you will hit hard plastic instead of rubber. The quick fix is the minicell, and it works perfectly. I can't compare directly with the bigger brand names, but I can't see what could be improved on (save the padding issue). Very solid, holds the kayak extremely well, easy to use (comes with straps). I'd buy them again.
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