Roof top gear boxes (Rocket box, etc.)

Discussion in 'Camping & Outdoor Gear' started by Shahram, Jul 15, 2005.

  1. Shahram

    Shahram I ain't got herpes no more.

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    What with all the talk in here about roof racks and roof bags, has anyone used rooftop gear boxes? I have a heavy duty bag that I used to use, but dust, wind, UV and moisture have made it so yucky that I haven't been using it lately, as it's a pain in the ass to clean and it's heavy. I'm curious now about the Yakima Rocket Box or Thule Weekender or similar product. I would be using it on the factory rack. I don't have a proper roof rack and with projects piling up and money whittling down, it doesn't look like I'll be getting or making one soon. I can pick a roof box up used for a song, and it does seem tempting. I could use it to stow the light and bulky crap up and out of the dust. What have been your experiences? Are they worth it? Pros? Cons?
     
  2. NorCalDoug

    NorCalDoug problems solved daily...

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    Every time I see one, I remember that someone here on MUD has a wife who called them roof-top suppositories :D

    They're okay, IMO. If you have a yakima rack, why not get one. The cons, as I see, would be the size of stuff you can put in there. The pro is that you might get less drag than with a bag.

    I think Alia has one on his 80.
     
  3. Tools R Us

    Tools R Us

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    Rocket box? Don't need no stinking box, just toss it on the roof and tie it down! :bounce:

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2005
  4. Grease Cruiser

    Grease Cruiser

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    I use a Yakima Rocket Box on my 60 for long road trips. It works great. We throw our light stuff up there. (sleeping bags, tent, fold up chairs, backpacks, etc.) You can get a lot more in there than you think. Also, if you are a skier, you can throw your skis up there as well. I would highly recommend one if you want to carry light gear.

    But there is something to be said for a utility rack taht you can carry heavier/bulkier items. That is why I have both.
     
  5. dd113

    dd113

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    Pelican 1650; best thing you can buy.
     
  6. CDN_Cruiser

    CDN_Cruiser

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    I would suggest that you don't buy a really cheap one - when I'm on the highway I always seem to see the 'huge square box' version that is spewing stuff out the side.

    If you're going to buy one, get a reasonablely good one. I bit the bullet and bought a large thule box that has been absolutely fantastic for my needs. First, I can put it on and take it off by myself (probably weights ~40lbs) and has four quick releases, so it snaps onto the racks in about 4 minutes (literally). It is completely water proof and has lasted very well for a number of years.

    It isn't too loud and it never budges. I'm also amazed at what it will hold - tons of stuff, including 2 sets of golf clubs + other gear, skis in the winter, paddles, etc in the summer. Plus I can have my canoe beside the box, bikes, etc.

    Cheers, Hugh

    PS _ I love pelican cases as well (use lots for camera gear etc), but IMHO not as convenient as a box. Given even the 1650 is 3cu', you will need 6 of them to equal the box I have - which I often fill :D (6 * $200 = $1,200 + 6 * 30lbs = 180lbs empty!)
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2005
  7. FirstToy

    FirstToy

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    Here is Devin on the DV trip that used the Thule. Another bonus besides aerodynamics is that it would keep the stuff clean. All the stuff in my roofrack looked like a dirt grenade hit it.
    It would take up alot of space when not in use.

    Not sure about Thule, but Yakima has models that can open from either side- that would be a must have, imo.

    [​IMG]

    I also saw this in the 05 Yak catalog - the ez-load. Looks handy for lifted trucks- it said going on sale in the fall
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    ah, I found their website-
    http://ezload.biz/pages/1/index.htm
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2005
  8. cruzer

    cruzer

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    Thule Cascade and Evolution series will open on both sides:)...

    I would say go for the Thule boxes but i am biased:)

    Any questions about Thule products feel free to ask me...

    Stewart Semeraro
    Test Engineer
    Thule Car Rack Systems, Inc.
     
  9. alia176

    alia176

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    I have the Thule series bars and a very low profile Thule Cape Cod box. It works great and is very quiet on the highway. However, it's not as large capacity as some of the other models. It's however, quite wide and very light.

    Ali

    ps. my wife calls it the roof enema :flipoff2:
    P5050231.JPG
     
  10. informationjunky

    informationjunky

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    I have 3 thule boxes....bought first one for tossing ski's into, then larger became handy for carring double stroller, two packnplays, etc. If anyone around the Atlanta area is interested, I'll sell the two smaller ones.

    edit: along the lines of roof top tents, I thought about trying to convert the large one into a cheap tent!
     
  11. Dunbar

    Dunbar SILVER Star

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    I have a Sears 20 cuft unit made by Thule, $177 on sale including tax. It was the biggest I could get as I have 3 child seats in the back seat and related paraphanilia behind them. It opens from the back which is great for standing on the tailgate to load.

    I mounted it on Yakima crossbars using the Yak square universal mount thingies. It worked great and I did not notice much difference in mileage but I keep my foot in the gas all the time anyway and dont bother checking.

    It is in semi-retirement in my garage as I bought an enclosed utility trailer which is much nicer. I can see over and around it and the cruiser does not know its even there. I also picked up a Garvin Expedition lenght wilderness rack becase another lister sold it to me cheeaap! I used it for one trip so far and no rain made it work. I could still throw the Sears box up there and have room to spare but I like the trailer better.

    I checked the Yak and Thule boxes at REI and the Sears unit is about the same construction. After I bought it someone gave me a link for very nice units that are hard cased like motorcycle stoeage. Can not find the link but they can be painted to match your vehicle etc. I think I found them from someone here on MUD, do a search.

    Dunbar
     
  12. Kaderabek

    Kaderabek SILVER Star

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    My version of the Beverley Hillbillies. The bag came off eBay for I think about $10, might have been $8. It holds two tough plastic boxes with lids that I bought from an industrial plastics manufacturer in New Jersey, Google found it. They were cheap, about $15 each. Gives me about 4.5' (the width of the rack) by 3.5' (half the length of the rack) by 20" (the height of the boxes) of storage. Or half that if I just use one box. And leaves the front portion of the rack open. The bag had these crazy long straps on it that went over the top of the bag and then down to be attached so I turned it upside down and cut the straps to length and now it straps easily under the sides of bag. I throw a kayak strap over it for good measure but there's really no need. The boxes make great tables when you set up camp, or easily store in the back of my 80. The setup is surprisingly quiet and since my gas mileage couldn't possibly get any worse, I've never bothered to check it. Works for me.

    These photos were taken with the lids off the boxes, they had yet to arrive. With the lids on the fit is snug.

    The reason that I didn't go with a Rocket Box is that there's no way it would withstand the trails around here. Way too many limbs and such. Which is one of the reasons I have the African Outback rack (from Slee). It protects the top of the truck. Clearly I wouldn't wheel in the brush with this setup though, a bit top heavy I would think. But these boxes and the bag could take it.

    TJK
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2006
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