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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
My overhang was calculated from the bed extender, to emphasize how much unsupported load you have, which to me is the key issue with transporting canoes/kayaks.
There are no laws about overhang in my state, other than attaching a red flag to your load.
While unsupported load is one of the things to consider, my other considerations were about maneuverability and the ability to use the truck bed for hauling all the other stuff I want to take with me at the same time. This configuration gives me FULL access to my truck bed AND trunk whole still carrying the kayak.
it was cheaper to build than most bed extenders, and I can park anywhere with it!
Bed extenders are the answer for some because each persons needs are different. This option fit my needs best because it fits all of my needs, not just some.
 

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I’m posting this because I got really frustrated trying to find a rack system that fit all my requirements for a good kayak rack on my Ridgeline.
i started off with the factory rails, added cross rails from Amazon. Was not happy with how little support that provides for a long kayak. So here my solution for a rear rack.
Couple questions....
1) why the wedges as opposed to say, something like a perforated angle iron backing?
2) have you thought about carpeting the portion of the bar that makes contact with the tailgate?
3) I noticed you have two eye bolts right above the tailgate level. One that acts as the pivot point for the fold down arm. Would it be more stable if the second was up near the top instead of down low?
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
Couple questions....
1) why the wedges as opposed to say, something like a perforated angle iron backing?
2) have you thought about carpeting the portion of the bar that makes contact with the tailgate?
3) I noticed you have two eye bolts right above the tailgate level. One that acts as the pivot point for the fold down arm. Would it be more stable if the second was up near the top instead of down low?
1) The wedges are required so that the 2x3 posts are oriented straight. The tie down points are angled which would have caused the upper cross bar to not seat flush against the supports.
2) I may still add carpet or foam to the supports that lower but not sure if I would like the looks. It hasn’t caused any marring or wear yet, so I’m leaning to leave them as is.
3) I originally was going to keep the bottom posts very short, so I keep the bolts close (6”) apart. I’ve had no stability issues so I’m not inclined to move them apart further. If you build one, additional spacing is usually better. I decided to keep the longer bottom supports because they have helped guide some loads a couple of times.
 

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I’m posting this because I got really frustrated trying to find a rack system that fit all my requirements for a good kayak rack on my Ridgeline.
i started off with the factory rails, added cross rails from Amazo. Was not happy with how little support that provides for a long kayak. So here my solution for a rear rack.

Started looking for a rear rack system that I could use to hold my 14-1/2 ft long Hobie Kayak. I really like the hitch mounted Rhino Rack T- Bar because it helps raise the kayak, but I hated the idea of losing the ability to open my tailgate/trunk.
Ended up making my own and it turned out easier than I expected. The end result is that I’ve got a rack that I can install / remove in about 5 minutes. The rack lowers to help me load the kayak, and best of all I can still use the bed cover, tailgate and trunk!

i made this out of 2x3 lumber using 3/8” bolting with tee nuts embedded in the lumber. I was originally only going to go up 6” above the bed rails for the bottom posts, but found that I liked the extra length to help guide the kayaks occasionally. The top section when lowered rests on top of the tailgate and hangs over about 2 feet. When lowered, this position makes it very easy to load/unload the kayak. I put foam under the carpet on the top rail to protect the kayak.
The bottom posts attach to the top and bottom tie-downs using bolts. I made wooden wedges for the lumber side of the mounting points and used store bought metal wedges on the side with no lumber.
Total cost was about $50.

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Great job. I will be doing something similar. Just so I understand, do the uprights bolt onto the cleats? I have the factory tonneau that required removing the upper factory cleats. I'm thinking of fabbing upright sleeves out of steel round tubing and welding mounting tabs that would bolt between the cab and the cleats. The sleeves would be as tall as the cab walls (so I can close the tonneau) and accept two uprights (actually a pair of old Yakima crossbars).
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Great job. I will be doing something similar. Just so I understand, do the uprights bolt onto the cleats? I have the factory tonneau that required removing the upper factory cleats. I'm thinking of fabbing upright sleeves out of steel round tubing and welding mounting tabs that would bolt between the cab and the cleats. The sleeves would be as tall as the cab walls (so I can close the tonneau) and accept two uprights (actually a pair of old Yakima crossbars).
Yes the uprights bolt to the cleats. Works great.
if the upper class interferes with your cover, you might be able to cut the top clear portion and still use the center portion to bolt to.
i like the time solution though also. Sounds like it would look nice and be easy to use.
 

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2020 RTL AWD, Sport Grille
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Thank you for posting your handiwork, love it! I was initially planning on dual 2x3s to sandwich the cleat, but no need for that overkill which looks like it would block the trunk as well. Your wedges address the angle issue beautifully. No lose nuts needed either with the embedded nut in the lumber. The pivot is a plus to aid loading. I hope to use a Yakima Q tower setup for the front cross bar (going to try the MDX clip recommendation).
 

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For those asking about a 14ft kayak in a Ridgeline with an extender.

Drive it 3 hours / 100 miles, negotiated a McDonalds drive thru...no issues.

Strapped in 5 places.

Down to the extender to stop up/down. Left/right tailgate to stop left/right movement. Left/right cab to stop forward/back.

Rock solid. But to each his own. The OP has a slick over head rig.

412395
 

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2019 Ridgeline Sport Crew Cab--bought used in Oct 2021--accessories TBD.
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FlaDeacon -- can you describe the loading process? Are the center pieces of wood down flush against the tailgate when you start to load a long kayak? How / when do you get them to the upright position and joined back with the frame?
 
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