See Products from Yakima in the Buyers' Guide!
|Yakima in the Buyers' Guide:|
• Bow/Stern Tiedown
• HullRaiser Aero
• Mako Aero Saddles
I have three kayaks: 1) a rotomolded 15.5 foot Necky (48 pounds), 2) a Wilderness Systems Ultralite 13 footer (38 pounds), and 3) a fiberglass/kevlar Epic V6 (16 feet, 34 pounds). I can use the BoatLoader for any of these kayaks without a problem. Strangely, the heaviest boat seems to be the easiest to load. The composite seems to slip a little, but it may be due to hull shape or the gloss.
I would give this a solid 10 except I, like another reviewer, have a little difficulty with the rubber insert that is supposed to hold the boatloader inside the round rack bar. I have to pull it as far as possible, then push it back in to find a stable point.
This has definitely been worth the investment.
I purchased the entire Yakima system for my Forester as it only had factory rails installed. I bought the round Yakima rails specifically so I could use the BoatLoader accessory. I have found the BoatLoader to be a great way for me to load my kayaks. My heaviest kayak is just over 50lbs and I have no problem loading it by myself now.
The BoatLoader seems sturdy enough. And I like that it doesn't stick out very far from the rack when not extended. When extended the width is just right for any of my kayaks. My husband likes that I don't have to always ask for his help now.
I love my BoatLoader by Yakima!
My down-rating comes from this... Unless your bars are new or nearly new, you will have installation issues! My bars were about 4 years old and had been left outside (mounted) most of this time. There was enough corrosion inside the bar to keep the "catch" from moving. (HINT - it took a great deal of cutting to get the plastic end plug off.) I eventually got one bar to slide all right (although roughly). The second bar was too badly corroded. I did remove the plastic catch piece, and now it slides in and out. However, I must watch for the hole (which would have held the catch), then move the bar back in a few inches
Oh yeah, the sand dollar graphic on the end of the loader is great!
The boat loader is easy once you get the hang of it - and makes it a breeze. Before loading was a long struggle and now I can get my kayaks up there fast and easy. It doesn't mar my car in any way and works like a dream.
My only wish is that when I bought the rack it would have been sold as an option - so I would have never have been without it. I have several car scratches from trying to load before the boat loader. Get it - you won't regret it.
100,000+ people can't be wrong!
The Paddling.net Newsletter is a must if you like to canoe or kayak! Each week it is packed with great articles, photos, product reviews, and special features. Better yet, we promise not to sell your email address to anyone; that's right ZERO spam! Sign up today and find out what you've been missing!