D.I.Y. Kayak Load Assist - Toyota 4Runner - Jackson Kayak Big Tuna

Homemade Kayak Load Assist for Jackson Kayak Big Tuna for my Toyota 4Runner.

D.I.Y. Kayak Load Assist - Toyota 4Runner - Jackson Kayak Big Tuna sentiment_very_dissatisfied 15

Kayak 10 years ago 85,548 views

Homemade Kayak Load Assist for Jackson Kayak Big Tuna for my Toyota 4Runner.

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Most popular comments
for D.I.Y. Kayak Load Assist - Toyota 4Runner - Jackson Kayak Big Tuna

shawn bebout
shawn bebout - 6 years ago
Badass.
L. R. McKenzie
L. R. McKenzie - 6 years ago
It's fun to watch everyone's DIY loading solutions. I'm currently working on my own.
oviedo2912
oviedo2912 - 6 years ago
Great idea! I'd strap the foam pads with some type of thin cord.
Dan K.
Dan K. - 6 years ago
How far apart are the cross bars on the 4runner from front to back?
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 6 years ago
Dan K. Hi, Dan! I measured the cross bars for you. It is 34" from the center of the front bar to the center of the rear bar. The front bar could be moved forward a few more inches if needed, but Toyota has a recommended placement for the front bar to reduce wind noise. Just in case you were wondering about the width, the inside width from the driver's side rail to the passenger side rail is about 39". Hope this helps!! ... Wade
Mississippi Leg Hound
Mississippi Leg Hound - 6 years ago
Great video! How fast can you drive with those Malone pads and a larger kayak??
Alameda Jon
Alameda Jon - 7 years ago
Ad 2 couplings on each side. To extend the drop down pieces to your rack , a bumper. Good idea, now I have my own ideas. ty
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 7 years ago
Alameda Jon Glad it helped! If you make any improvements or modifications that work out well, then be sure to let me know. Always trying to think of ways to upgrade / update / modify to a better design!
MOISES F IZURIETA
MOISES F IZURIETA - 7 years ago
Great job.
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 7 years ago
MOISES F IZURIETA Thanks so much for the comment!!
TheDcrocks1
TheDcrocks1 - 7 years ago
good job
Todd Cranford
Todd Cranford - 7 years ago
Hi Wade,
Can I get a list of the specifications for your rack? Size of pvc, etc. I would like to try and recreate it but am not a handy man. Thanks, Todd in Louisiana
Lauren Putthoff
Lauren Putthoff - 6 years ago
thank you!!! seriously this is a huge help!
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 7 years ago
Todd Cranford Here you go. All of the pieces are 1 1/2" OD except for the center roller bar which is 2" OD. Hope this helps!!

11" hitch pipe
Tee from hitch
13" from hitch tee right
13" from hitch tee left
90 degree threaded elbow female
90 degree threaded elbow female
Male threaded slip left
Male threaded slip right
56" up left
56" up right
Male threaded slip left
Male threaded slip right
90 degree elbow female left
90 degree elbow male left
6" roof bar left - from vertical to horizontal slider tee
6" roof bar right - from vertical to horizontal slider tee
18" roof bar left - from slider tee to foot assembly
18" roof bar right - from slider tee to foot assembly
90 degree left
90 degree right
5" down roof bar foot left
5" down roof bar foot right
Cap left w/ rubber end
Cap right w/ rubber end
2 tees center top
27" center bar

20" center slider - bigger OD 2"

10. comment for D.I.Y. Kayak Load Assist - Toyota 4Runner - Jackson Kayak Big Tuna

Stephen Walker
Stephen Walker - 7 years ago
Good job. I'm curious why you dismissed trailing as an option. So much quicker. Hitch up and off you go with your boat already loaded. Launching from the trailer and recovery to it are easy too. So can you please explain why you chose not to trail your boat?
Rudy Ackerman
Rudy Ackerman - 6 years ago
Not everyone has a place to store a trailer. Also a trailer has to be tagged in most states.
Stephen Walker
Stephen Walker - 7 years ago
+Wade Ritchie
Ah, now I understand. Thanks.
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 7 years ago
Stephen Walker ... thanks for the comment! I dismissed trailering as an option because I most often use my kayak while camping. At the time I made this video, I had a pull-behind camper trailer that I would hook up to the 4Runner hitch after the kayak was up on the roof. Now I have an actual motorhome and pull the 4Runner on a car trailer behind the motorhome, so I still have the need to put the kayak up on the 4Runner roof. But I do totally agree with you ... if I was just heading to a local lake, having the kayak on a kayak trailer would be so much easier.
Blacklist
Blacklist - 7 years ago
I know this was posted forever ago but great idea. I would say to get rid of that play just extend that PVC (where you put those black foam) just extent them directly so it touches the roof racks so it has no place to go... just an idea. thanks for sharing
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 7 years ago
pfStream I haven't tried that, but great suggestion!! Someone else also suggested cutting holes in tennis balls and then inserting the PVC pipe feet into the tennis ball hole. As long as the hole makes for a tight fit, then the tennis balls should stay in place and should prevent any scratching of the vehicle. Anyway ... thanks for the comments!!
pfStream
pfStream - 7 years ago
Thanks for the video Wade Ritchie! Have you try gluing the pads to the legs that go on the roof? Also, I agree with you about PVC being a great material. I've inserted dowels into them to make them less flexible,. If I need something stronger, I've used steel pipes. Just want to share.
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 7 years ago
Blacklist ... thanks so much for the comment! Great idea ... if I eventually have to rebuild the top section, then I most likely will lengthen it so that it reaches all of the way to the rear bar of the roof rack.
Rocstoneau
Rocstoneau - 7 years ago
this is a pretty good idea. :-)
Peggy Cathey
Peggy Cathey - 7 years ago
Since I'm a 5' 6" female I had a hard time getting the bow up onto the roller. So I added a 2nd roller lower down (and further out) which allowed me to set the bow on it & then roll it up to the higher roller. It also gave additional support to the two upright pieces. I used cotter pins to keep it in place so I could still break the lower section down.
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 7 years ago
That sounds like an awesome upgrade, Peggy!! Being 6'3" myself, I know that my height most definitely helps me when it comes to using my design. Very glad to hear that others are making modifications to fit their particular needs. The best thing is that I have learned that PVC Pipe is a great & cheap material that can be used to build things & to solve problems & to experiment with while not breaking a person's bank account!! :).
Al Wiz
Al Wiz - 7 years ago
Great idea. Thanks
USMCRetiredGuns
USMCRetiredGuns - 7 years ago
Excellent design to overcome your obstacles!  A suggestion I have, instead of the pads you use, maybe find a ball, (Tennis Ball, or a Nerf type, soft ball? ) to make it a bit easier, and prevent a scratch to your Vehicle's Paint!  Just stuff it tightly in the open end, walla! Thanks for sharing!  I wish someone would come up with a loader like the Aussie's seem to have accomplished, or share their method of construction so we can possibly build it, but hey, this works too!  I have that Shark Fin Antenna, as well, and will be getting a 2015 VW Sportwagen TDI Diesel, once the US Government EPA figures out how to spank VW for their Dieselgate issue!  I want to put a 200 lb., Hobie, Tandem Island on it, which is nearly 20' long, as well!  To do that, your design can also be incorporated as a Rear Prop by having the ability to shorten the Vertical legs of your design, perhaps?  Again, thanks!
Milburn Taylor
Milburn Taylor - 7 years ago
Wade, my wife and I are pulling a new pop-up camper with out new 2016 Runner. I've been trying to avoid putting anything on top of the camper, but I understand it's done all the time. I may put one kayak on the car using your technique, and carry one on top of the camper. I looked at several other DIY kayak loaders, but hands down, your idea is the best! Thanks again.
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 7 years ago
They have these "J-Style" kayak holders for roof racks, but I have never used them before. http://www.maloneautoracks.com/j-style-kayak-carriers.php. I just don't know if you would have enough room on the roof rack to load the first kayak, "roll it" on to its side to fit in the holder, and then load the second. Some after-market roof racks have cross bars that extend past the side of the vehicle to provide more width to work with, so you could try to figure out some sort of a D.I.Y. solution for that as well.

Have fun with your 4Runner and your Camper!! I take my 4Runner camping all of the time and really put it to the test at times ... 4Runner has never let me down!! :).
Milburn Taylor
Milburn Taylor - 7 years ago
Brilliant! I love the simplicity, and I've been trying to figure out how to put my kayak on top. Your video really helped. Thank you for posting it. Any ideas for two kayaks? Do you think the same principle will work?

Your idea for the hood straps is great.
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 7 years ago
Glad my video helped, Milburn! Thanks for the comments!! I've never given any thoughts to two kayaks, so unfortunately I don't have any good ideas for that problem. ;(
Glenn L
Glenn L - 7 years ago
Nice job man!
Tim Shoemaker
Tim Shoemaker - 7 years ago
if you extended your top supports all the way to the cross bars of your rooftop, then you could attach them or even just lean them against it, and it would solve the bungee problem. Great solution to the problem.

20. comment for D.I.Y. Kayak Load Assist - Toyota 4Runner - Jackson Kayak Big Tuna

Amy Ritter
Amy Ritter - 7 years ago
That's pretty awesome, Big Tuna!
Stephen Bradley
Stephen Bradley - 8 years ago
It's a great design... You could upgrade your design using square section aluminium tube, fastened together with locking pins. It might prove more durable over time and you could also duplicate it and make it available as a kit for other 4track suv owners on mail order!
Rocstoneau
Rocstoneau - 7 years ago
good tip thanks.
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 8 years ago
Thanks for the tip, Stephen! I'll definitely try that out cause the noise freaks out the dog!! Lol
shakeyfly
shakeyfly - 8 years ago
are those factory bars? and what are the kayak holders on them?
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 8 years ago
+shakeyfly I never even tried putting weight on the spoiler because I figured it would break the very first time!!
shakeyfly
shakeyfly - 8 years ago
Exactly the info I needed thanks! I just got a kayak with the factory rods and I HATE loading by putting weight on the spoiler. Thanks for the video 
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 8 years ago
Hello! The cross bars are part of the factory roof rack. The four holders mounted to the cross bars can be found at this link ... http://www.maloneautoracks.com/saddle-up-pro.php. I picked those up at the kayak store when i bought the kayak. Hope this helps!!
Kathy Dembek
Kathy Dembek - 8 years ago
Perfect
Sam Miller
Sam Miller - 8 years ago
Great job.  Super impressed with your efforts!
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 8 years ago
Thanks, Sam!!
julie wright
julie wright - 8 years ago
we have a ford galaxy 7 seater we are struggling to get 2 large kayaks on the roof I bet neighbours get a right how when we are going kayaking lol ocean prowler ultra 4.3 and a scupper pro ocean 4.5 lol the first being a heavy sod with rudder and extras about 80lbs just for that the other we can struggle with and get on side bars rucks but the large baby hit me at the edge lol scrapped and brusied my leg lolwe have a side bar that comes out at side and struggle to get kayak on it fine then when we try to turn it frightened it will hit the damn car lol. any ideas for 2 kayaks big mother f.......s lol we had no prob with our 2galaxy smaller kayaks just bought these and having fun  .apart from that the car is fairly new and don't want to smash it up quite yet lol any ideas like a side rack or something like what you did looks great would it be strong enough for the prowler do you think like load this first then put the lighter one 16 kilos on the side ruck bars lol
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 8 years ago
I don't know how to solve all of THAT, Julie!! lol. Sounds to me like you all just need a Big Ass Trailer to put all of that stuff on!! :)
Sheryl Roberts
Sheryl Roberts - 8 years ago
Wow! This is amazing. You are so clever!
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 8 years ago
Thanks, Sheryl. Never underestimate the creativity of Kayak owners when it comes to PVC pipe!! lol
Richard Clements
Richard Clements - 8 years ago
Brilliant!!
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 8 years ago
Thanks, Richard! Hope that you got some good ideas from the video!!

30. comment for D.I.Y. Kayak Load Assist - Toyota 4Runner - Jackson Kayak Big Tuna

SandbarGirls
SandbarGirls - 8 years ago
Mahalo nui for this post. Our new 4 runner doesn't have the fin but still has that dumb ferring on the back. You would think Toyota woulda figured that out by now--but they haven't. Love your Good ol' American ingenuity and every explanatory video. This is a great idea. So glad your shared it. Aloha--Kathleen in Kaneohe (Hawaii)
Mary Schatz
Mary Schatz - 8 years ago
I love your ingenuity and thank you for posting this. I do wish Toyota wouldn't make a utility vehicle with a roof rack you can't even use, how stupid is that? People talk about US auto manufactures poor engineering design - the wiper spoiler and antenna are just dumb. Of course the wiper spoiler is everywhere but the 4Runner is the last of the utility vehicles.
I wish I was tall enough to make this work for me but I am not.
Jorge Schmidt
Jorge Schmidt - 8 years ago
What brand of kayak roof rack do you have?
Jorge Schmidt
Jorge Schmidt - 8 years ago
+Wade Ritchie Thank you. Awesome project.
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 8 years ago
Hi, Jorge! I have a factory roof rack & cross bars from Toyota. I then purchased 4 Malone kayak holders that mount to the cross bars and hold the kayak in place. Hope that this answers your question!! ... Wade
Jim Higgins
Jim Higgins - 8 years ago
Oops! I meant 3" PVC not 203"!
Jim Higgins
Jim Higgins - 8 years ago
Great rack! Is this made out of 2" PVC? I assume the center roller pipe is 203" PVC. Is the pipe that goes into the hitch a smaller size like 1/12" or is it the 2"? Thanks for sharing....you should have this patterned in hard rubber or aluminum!
Wade Ritchie
Wade Ritchie - 8 years ago
+Jim Higgins  Hi, Jim!  Thanks for the comments!!  The rack is actually made out of 1 1/2" PVC.  The center roller pipe is 2" PVC.  Before building, I initially wondered if the 1 1/2" PVC would be strong enough ... it definitely is though and I'm sure it could handle even more weight than just a Big Tuna.
Peter Felix
Peter Felix - 8 years ago
Great idea and design, thank you.
Ed Forbes
Ed Forbes - 8 years ago
Good job and nice explanation.
raykupal
raykupal - 9 years ago
... need to patent this. Its brilliant!
nathan case
nathan case - 9 years ago
where did you get those hood inserts? Great video by the way. i'm definitely going to try and do this
pfStream
pfStream - 7 years ago
I've seen them at REI. Also try searching for "under-hood anchor strap". There are some good DYI ideas too.
Wylie Edwards
Wylie Edwards - 9 years ago
That is such an ingenious and simple solution to a problem that anyone with a decent sized kayak will have.  Gave me an idea about how I can get my big tuna onto my trailer a lot easier than it has been in the past.  Thanks!
atcred3
atcred3 - 9 years ago
EXCELENT IDEA AND CONSTRUCTION!!!!.....NOW THIS IS HOW YOU PROBLEM SOLVE WITH INOVATION AND DETERMINATION!!...GREAT JOB SIR!!!!!!!
Tatersalad19 Cars
Tatersalad19 Cars - 9 years ago
if you put 2 or 3 twists in the ratchet straps between where they contact the kayak and the rack it will stop the vibration noise 
javier concepcion
javier concepcion - 9 years ago
Awesome idea! Thanks for sharing...! God bless...
Gina Gilmore
Gina Gilmore - 9 years ago
brilliant, absolutely brilliant.  thank you
Casey Monroe
Casey Monroe - 9 years ago
I love ingenuity, well done sir!
Bassett Hound123
Bassett Hound123 - 9 years ago
Awesome idea.. Nice build...
Yakdoc kayak
Yakdoc kayak - 10 years ago
An excellent solution,
Yakdoc kayak
Yakdoc kayak - 10 years ago
Hi from Australia Wade,  luv your work and I have a customer that wants a trolling motor and fish finder on a Jackson Big Tuna kayak the same as yours, I have been studying your vids and will be referring to them during the outfitting.

Top videos thankyou for posting.

Cheers Steve
www.yakdoc.com
Yakdoc kayak
Yakdoc kayak - 10 years ago
Hi Wade, I just finished quoting my customer and he has given me the go ahead, I will be taking photos and videoing the whole outfit and it will be posted on my website www.yakdoc.com, thanks once again for an awesome series of videos, you have made this outfit much much easier to complete.

Cheers From Australia.
Andrew Eddy
Andrew Eddy - 10 years ago
Any suggestions on loading it into a 6.4 truck bed without the possibility of a bed hitch extender? Bow or stern first, hull up/down,tailgate up or tailgate down? Of course I want to be safe and avoid any damage to the kayak. Any help would be awesome!!!... if not Big Rig it is!!!!
Tatersalad19 Cars
Tatersalad19 Cars - 9 years ago
your best bet is buying a good strong truck cap, you can load it on top, it extends over the cab. and you still  have mass storage for other stuff in the bed you can often find used truck caps pretty cheap and install mounting hardware for ratchet straps etc. i use pool noodles for padding between the cap and kayak, 
Andrew Eddy
Andrew Eddy - 10 years ago
Thanks so much. Sorry I got you twice with the questions. Thought I clicked different Tuna video. My head is spinning with excitment
Doug Newton
Doug Newton - 10 years ago
Can you send me the dimensions and what Size PVC for this build!? Very nice!! Thanks!!

50. comment for D.I.Y. Kayak Load Assist - Toyota 4Runner - Jackson Kayak Big Tuna

Ryver Hyker
Ryver Hyker - 10 years ago
Oh...did I need to say I will be trying this/maybe with pvc joints w/a v in the center.  But thanks...You have saved a lot of us 100s.
Ryver Hyker
Ryver Hyker - 10 years ago
The ingenuity of some never ceases to amaze me.  I have a 17 foot canoe and a Tahoe...not 24 dead lifting 300 lbs anymore.  Great Job!!!
Ryver Hyker
Ryver Hyker - 10 years ago
+writchie Oh..no, the canoe is only 80 lbs...(im saying only 80 lbs, might as well be 300 after sitting at a desk for 17 years..ha, ha, ha).  3 versions of P90X since I got the first.  Don't know if you idea will help me work out more, but it will let me get out more by myself (when no one else wants to go.)  Thanks :-}
James V
James V - 10 years ago
Either you have that camera on top of your head, or you're significantly taller than my already significantly tall 6'5" self.  I have a 2005 4Runner and I can't see my roof from that angle at all!  I have been having issues loading my WM Pompano 120 (basically a 2008 Tarpon 120).  I've been scratching up my 4Runner mostly on the unloading process.  Loading is fairly easy, I can usually just lift it and plonk it down onto the rack from the side of the truck, but I'm not tall enough to grab both sides for unloading.  Figures, that's when I have sand or mud on the bottom of the hull and that occasionally grinds on my 4Runner.

Thanks for sharing this, I'm probably gonna build something similar today to save my poor truck.
David Sitone
David Sitone - 10 years ago
nice job.  Instead of those foam pads, you could probably jam a tennis ball into each one of those 90s.
Steve Sherron
Steve Sherron - 10 years ago
Nice job on this video. Very genius idea. 
mcnm69
mcnm69 - 10 years ago
very good !

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