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Should I get a roof box?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I have a Yakima rack system with a Powderhound ski rack attachment on my Subaru Forester. It holds 4 skis/snowboards, but I find that occasionally I have to run an extra kid or 2 back from the mountain and I need room for 5. I have the vice-type rack and was thinking I would add the Thule snowboard rig that holds 2 boards at an angle and would solve my problem. However, I might be getting some Pocket Rockets to fill out my quiver and my 13-year-old now has Volkl V park rider skis in addition to his snowboard, so, maybe we both are bringing both our skis, toss in another 2 kids, maybe 3. So, the dude in the ski shop says to go with a Rocket Box, making the case that I would be spending $80 on the Thule rig, why not bite the bullet and get a Box of some kind that would hold all the equip and have all-season use as roof stowage in addition. However, the Boxes go $250 and up. Also, the rack opened once on the highway and my Xscreams almost got done in, miraculously escaping with only a slight ding on one.

Whaddya think?
post #2 of 14
I bought a Thule box 4 years ago, & have never regretted it. When we all go skiing, I can fit 4 or 5 pairs of skis (some are kids' skis), 2 snowboards, all the helmets, about 3 pairs of boots, and a few smaller duffle bags in it. All the gear stays clean & dry. Leaves lots more room in the car or van. Also using it during summer road trips.

Mounting it takes about 5 minutes (it clamps onto the existing roofrack). Only major downside is freeing up storage space for it when we're not using it. I ended up hanging it under the deck.

They are more expensive than the racks, but they are also far more versatile. If you figure you'll be using it for at least 10 years, any season, it's a pretty reasonable investment. The new Thule boxes are a bit more aerodynamic than the older ones, & look like they may have slightly more capacity. If you are going w/ a Thule, just make sure they are compatible w/ the Yakima rack. Otherwise, Yakima make their own boxes as well.
post #3 of 14
Go with the box. We are very happy with our Thule. The skis are not subject to the road grime, rocks and crap, and we can use the box for extra storage on other trips, or for dirty/wet cloths storage when we Mt. Bike or Sea Kayak, etc.

post #4 of 14
I have given up using a rack on my car because I'm tired of grit getting in my bindings and my edges rusting. Go with the box, the wear and tear it prevents is worth it.
post #5 of 14
I have given up using a rack on my car because I'm tired of grit getting in my bindings and my edges rusting. Go with the box, the wear and tear it prevents is worth it.
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
I just zipped over the Rack Warehouse on my lunch break and checked out boxes: Thule Frontier (11 cuft, $206) vs Yakima Spacebooster (11 cuft, $233), anybody have a pref of Thule vs Yakima? Should I go bigger for another $100?
post #7 of 14
I've had a large ski pod for about 12 years now and can't imagine going on any ski trip without it! It'll hold 6+ pairs of skies, poles, and other as sundry ski stuff. You'll be surprised how much you can fit into one if your creative! When both my boys were USSA racers and we were traveling all over the northeast, the ski pod was a necessity.

Get a large quality ski pod. You wouldn't regret it. Watch out for the thin walled cheap ski boxes. They have significant flex, can be a pain to close since their so flimsy and don't always give a good weather tight seal.

Also, a ski pod is the perfect place to display your collection of ski stickers! Everytime we go skiing someplace new, I try to get that mountains sticker for my pod. Before you know it your pod will be a covered with stickers from all the neat places you've skied!

[ December 04, 2002, 10:50 AM: Message edited by: HarryO ]
post #8 of 14
The large Thule is my choice.

post #9 of 14
I'll vote for the Yakima - I guess it sounds to me like you can't go wrong with any of them.
post #10 of 14
I also drive a Forester and put a box on my first one and new one. Like everyone says here there are many good reasons to use the box. One point I didn't read is the safety of skis being in a separate compartment instead of flying around the passenger compartment if there's a crash. One thing to pay attention to is the height of the box. With the Forester adding a box can just put you over height for a lot of parking garages. Not the end of the world but not convenient either. An inch or two can be quite a bit more limiting. I mounted 2x4s crossways in my box just either side of the bindings, keeps the skis a little steadier and allows me to get more skis in.
post #11 of 14
Go bigger, some of the newer Thule boxes have a system called "Quick Snap" which makes it very easy to mount and dismount. Maybe some of the Evolution series. We have the Frontier ($$$) and it would be nice to have more room on road trips (5 skiers/snowboarders).
post #12 of 14
I have a Thule Frontier I believe the model is, or it could start with a "P", but I think its called the Frontier. Its has an aerodynamic shape and easily holds 5-6 pair of skis and a snowboard if you are lucky. My buddies and I always fit our park skis and pow skis in there, so there are usually six pair of skis in it. After using a box you'll wonder why you never you bought one years ago. As far as comparing Thule to Yakima. Plastic quality is pretty close although I think Thule is better. You don't have to by anything extra to mount a Thule as long as there is a luggage rack on your car. After the initial installation it easly comes on and off in less then 5 minutes, especially if you have a little help from one other person. It also has a one key/lock locking mechinism. And you can find a Thule model comparable to a Yakima model for about $60 cheaper than a Yakima if you shop around. I bought my Thule for $179 at Bob Ward's in Bozeman a couple years ago. A Yakima rack with less room was about $259 at that time.

[ December 04, 2002, 02:36 PM: Message edited by: 7 Mary 3 ]
post #13 of 14
Love it year round. This summer, I even took the thwarts and one seat out of my canoe and hauled the canoe atop the loaded box.

This weekend I had sis pair of skis, all the poles and a soft luggage bag or two up there.
post #14 of 14
Buy the box....it will give you space...it will make you happy...it will make you optimize the space above your head while driving....buy the SWEDISH one (hint: THULE). Or buy Yakima, I don't care.......Thule's new quick-change system is cool, though (& I wish I had it, since I had to wrestle my old one around this evening to switch to a longer bar to fit the new auto). :

[ December 04, 2002, 09:23 PM: Message edited by: PerSwede ]
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