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I have two 15' long kayaks and am concerned that my factory rails are to short to handle the wind torque effects. The rails on my old minivan were long and the racks carrying the kayaks were about 8' apart, but the acadia rails are pretty short and the racks can be spaced only about 4' apart. That means that if I let the kayaks hang a foot past the rear bumper (4' behind the rear rack) they will stick out about 7' ahead of the front rack (about a foot behind the front bumper).

Seems like wind blowing on the kajaks might create to much stress for the rails via the front rack. Does anyone have experience hauling long kayaks with an acadia or has anyone installed a supplemental rack ahead of the factory rack?

I'm considering installing Yakima Landing pads on the roof halfway between the windshield and rails so I could use their quick-disconnect towers to mount a forward rack when carrying the kayaks (I would use a rear rack attached to factory rails). But I'm a little nervous about drilling into the roof for the pad fasteners without knowing what lies beneath (e.g. supports, wires, ducting). Again, anyone out there have any experience with this?

Thanks.
 

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Yeah... "really". I used them on my Envoy and now use them on my Acadia. I have an Old Town Dirigo XT Tandem Plus kayak which is 15' 3". It's a monster, but a great kayak for a tandem. I use the redesigned '10 crossrails with a Malone SeaWing kayak carrier (see link below). After loading the beast onto the carrier, I tie down the front using the nylon top ties and then the rear to the hitch receiver. Works like a charm! I've traveled hundreds of miles and not had a problem. When initially starting out, I'll drive about 20 or 30 miles and then pull over for a safety check. I'll check the tightness of the bolts on the carrier and snug up the front and rear ropes. After that, I'll check them each time I fill up just for piece of mind. The only time I ever worried about it was when I pulled up a little close to the rear of a tractor trailer. The wind buffeted the kayak pretty good, but the ropes and carrier did their job. I just don't sneak up on big trucks anymore.

http://www.maloneautoracks.com/seawing.php
 

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Sorry to resurect a really old thread, but I've lost a kayak off the roof of my Audi, the wind caught it and ripped the rails right off the car. Lots of damage to the car, and a little damage to the boat. Since then, I've always tied down the bow of the boat(s) and never had another problem.
 
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