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Friday, July 19, 2013

Mountain Biking & Kayaking Sans Roof Rack

I am aware that their have been no updates about my Mountain Biking & Kayaking activities. The reason is simple, I haven't really been doing much of either since my roof rack was stolen off my car this past fall.  The thieves didn't get away with everything but it was enough to render the rack useless. The stole the rear bar and mounting brackets and the fairing. The only thing that saved part of my Thule rack was the way the front bar mounted to the door frame. They couldn't get the rack off the steel grommets built into the car and thankfully they didn't try to pry the door open to free it.

I attempted to purchase the parts to make my roof rack whole directly from Thule but wouldn't sell me just the parts I needed. They told me they only sell the mountain brackets in sets of 4 and bars in pairs. Needing only 2 not 4 mounting brackets and 1 bar not 2 I was frustrated. Understanding that it prevents thieves from making full sets from stolen parts I offered proof that I purchased it all. The customer service person told me she would speak to her supervisor and get back to me. She never did.  Even more then the bad customer service I am angry that the locks on the Thule are so easily bypassed. In hindsight I can see how flimsy and poorly engineered the lock doors on the Thule roof racks are. A simple hard pull and the plastic lock doors pop leaving your expensive rack vulnerable to thieves. Given the flimsy lock doors on their products I decided I simply wouldn't buy a new rack from them.

I looked at other manufacturer's but they all are similarly priced and I just wasn't in a position to invest that kind of money on a new rack for a car that I may not have a whole lot longer.  I had all but given up until recently. When I saw a special on for Roof racks specific to my car on sale and I am pleased to report that I sprung for a new.

Hopefully It will allow me to begin using my toys once more. The new roof rack is designed for specifically for my model VW and allows for easy installation and removal While it doesn't appear as nicely made as my previous Thule rack it will do the job. It too has locks but they seem not as secure as I would like and as such I plan to remove it between use and not leave it on the car as I had previously done with my Thule rack. I look forward to updating my blog with more adventures both on the trails and in the water soon.

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