Karitek Roof Rack
How to use it
It’s only taken me 5 years to do it but here’s my article on how the Karitek roof rack works. Somebody out there may be interested in getting one and hopefully this will help? We took pictures of every stage of the loading process so you can see in detail just how it works.
Once down you can load your kayak onto it but do notice that you still need to lift it around 3 feet up onto the rack. It’s physically only about 2 ft but your arms need to go higher to compensate for the kayaks width. Plus I have the advantage of a high curb at home so height can vary.
One it’s on the rack you need to shuffle it to the best position for the straps to go on. I keep my cam straps trimmed with burnt ends to stop them flapping around in the wind and less to wrap & tie up which is time consuming & no good for someone wanting to get out in a hurry! Balance is important too especially for long journeys as the wind could get a hold of the kayak at the front.
Sometimes you need to lift the kayak a little to get the strap through and I usually nudge it up with a shoulder if needed. If this needs to be done then maye the kayak needs moving forward or backwards a little depending on how close the bars are together for play.
You can see the bottom end of the strap fed through the eyelet. Both uprights are adjustable and there’s newer versions available with countersunk bolts with allen key fittings unlike my origal ones which have a bolt head that stands proud and can damage the plastic of the kayak hence my bubble wrap you can see in the pictures.
Once it’s strapped on simply lift the bar up and out over then push it onto the roof. It’s honestly not as heavy as it may look as the bar/rack takes a lot of the weight. Sometimes you need to guide the backend of the rack into the guides on the roof but it’s no bother.
One it’s on the roof you can push the pins through and push the pin end over to secure it. If the holes are misaligned just jiggle the bar until they’re true. The pins do rust but a little WD40 a couple of times per year has kept mine working fine for the last 5 years.
As you can see the kayak is on and ready to go! If I travel further than my local launches I usually add an extra strap at the front through a scupper hole fitted around the entire roof bar as a precaution then wrap it around and tie it off. This gives peace of mind during the journey and makes it harder to steal if you stop off at services etc. I also keep a metal chain with lock in the van too when camping etc.