proper cargo tie down on roof rack

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4wheelrunner

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I’m planning on taking my new Gazelle T4 out on a trip in a few weeks and decided due to size going to put it on the roof along with some camping chairs. What is the proper way to secure them so it doesn’t get loose on the highway. I’ve been doing a lot of research and seems cam straps would be the way to go as ratchet can get too tight but then theres hooks vs no hooks? I have a prinsu style rack, should the cargo be strapped to the cross bars or side rails, side to side, wrap around tent. Any pictures or detailed instructions would be appreciated, apologize if this was asked before but couldn’t find much in the search.
 

Pretzel

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For my Gazelle T4Plus, I used cam straps lashing it to the cross bars.
I would hook a strap to the rear bar, run it along the side of the tent up to the front bar, loop around the tent with the strap and cinch to the front bar.
Then do the opposite on the other side of the tent (going front to back).

This gave me really good hold in all directions.

[edit] - I also tied off the slack strap past the cam so it couldn't slip or flap around. I checked on it anytime we stopped and never had to tighten/adjust.
 

bgenlvtex

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Basic rule of load securement :
If a lot is good, too much is just enough.

You can definitely taco a roof rack with minimum effort and a ratchet strap.

Then again, you can also exhibit a minimum level of awareness and quit cranking on it before that happens.

I like ratchet straps but whatever you use, use enough of them to render the cargo motionless
 

Bernard_C

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I use these Thule straps to secure kayaks to my roof rack. The technique sounds the same as Pretzel's suggestion. That last bit about tying the loose end as close to the cam as possible (I use a chain of slip knots) is also important to minimize slippage. If this works with kayaks, it'll work with your gazelle. If you're extra paranoid, you can feed the strap through a handle in the carrying case, if the gazelle has one.
 
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4wheelrunner

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I use these Thule straps to secure kayaks to my roof rack. The technique sounds the same as Pretzel's suggestion. That last bit about tying the loose end as close to the cam as possible (I use a chain of slip knots) is also important to minimize slippage. If this works with kayaks, it'll work with your gazelle. If you're extra paranoid, you can feed the strap through a handle in the carrying case, if the gazelle has one.
Thanks guys for the tips. I found this picture online, is this similar to how you strap your kayak? I’m thinking this will work and maybe add a few more straps to tie it to the side rail.
7E73C4D8-72D0-4A96-8DB5-C7D22884521A.jpeg
 

bgenlvtex

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Thanks guys for the tips. I found this picture online, is this similar to how you strap your kayak? I’m thinking this will work and maybe add a few more straps to tie it to the side rail.
View attachment 190087
Nothing wrong with that, and your tent will shift less easily than a kayak simply because there will be some droop around the cross member. Two of those on the tent and it won't be going anywhere.
 
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Fletcher8969

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I've used cam straps to attach my T4 directly to roof rack and haven't had any issue with it loosening up. I drove 5 hours on the highway to the Mojave Road start, drove the Mojave Road and drove 4 hours home. It was fine.
 
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Anak

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One thing not mentioned: Some settling may occur in transit. After you have driven for an hour or so take the time to stop and check your straps. Odds are you will be able to cinch something down just a bit.

And then check things again a few miles after you have left pavement. Rough roads will really help things settle.
 

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Bravo for looking for knowledge on this important topic. I’m constantly horrified by the poorly secured loads I see on the road these days. I wish everyone cared as much as you do.

The engineer in me makes securing anything loaded in a vehicle a mental puzzle of forces and weight distribution. To my mind, the thing I see mostly under appreciated is the huge forces from rapid deceleration (breaking and crashing). Especially inside vehicles. I consider everything in the vehicle a deadly weapon and try to secure it so my family isn’t a victim.

My paranoia leads me to think first, how do I hold this thing in place so the load doesn’t shift while driving forces in all directions. Then, how is the system I just created going to fail in a crash or rollover. Then I modify the system. I realize to be practical there is no such thing as a failure proof system, it I’m not going to hurt someone because I didn’t spend 5 minutes trying to take as much care as I am able to secure something.
 

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Bravo for looking for knowledge on this important topic. I’m constantly horrified by the poorly secured loads I see on the road these days. I wish everyone cared as much as you do.

The engineer in me makes securing anything loaded in a vehicle a mental puzzle of forces and weight distribution. To my mind, the thing I see mostly under appreciated is the huge forces from rapid deceleration (breaking and crashing). Especially inside vehicles. I consider everything in the vehicle a deadly weapon and try to secure it so my family isn’t a victim.

My paranoia leads me to think first, how do I hold this thing in place so the load doesn’t shift while driving forces in all directions. Then, how is the system I just created going to fail in a crash or rollover. Then I modify the system. I realize to be practical there is no such thing as a failure proof system, it I’m not going to hurt someone because I didn’t spend 5 minutes trying to take as much care as I am able to secure something.
Although it goes beyond the requested topic, that is a very good advise with regard to the items in the vehicle. We overlanders often have a lot of small items in the vehicle (handheld radios, tablet, gps messenger, thermo mug, tool box and so on).

If these are just unsecured in the rig they just rattle around while driving and this noises are just a pain in the ass. But these items can fly around in the car or even become dangerous projectiles in case of offroad driving or in an accident. Please do not use for example a free passenger seat as a storage area for loose items, even if it seems practical at first sight. In this case it could also happen that you intuitively grab them when they slip from the seat, for example during a severe braking. And then you might lose control of the vehicle. So please pack even small items securely but still within easy reach.

Back to the roofrack. From my experience, roof loads should always be reconsidered because of the resulting deterioration in driving characteristics and the additonal height. The rig and especially the chassis/ suspension are extremely challenged by additional roof loads. Furthermore a high roof load can also demand a lot from the driver. Just think of off-road or in strong crosswinds for example. Yes, it looks kind of cool, but does it all really have to go on the roof? That´s the question from my point of view. If so, please take special care with roof loads and their effects on the driving physics and tie everything down very well and check it regularly while on the road.

@4wheelrunner By the way, I think it's great that you're thinking about this topic and asking questions here. There's just too much badly lashed cargo. And especially during the vacation season there's a lot of stuff lying around on the highway here, even things like bicycles, surfboards etc., because of inadequate load securing. That is very dangerous and doesn't have to be the case!

Safe travels.
 
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Old Tanker

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I’m planning on taking my new Gazelle T4 out on a trip in a few weeks and decided due to size going to put it on the roof along with some camping chairs. What is the proper way to secure them so it doesn’t get loose on the highway. I’ve been doing a lot of research and seems cam straps would be the way to go as ratchet can get too tight but then theres hooks vs no hooks? I have a prinsu style rack, should the cargo be strapped to the cross bars or side rails, side to side, wrap around tent. Any pictures or detailed instructions would be appreciated, apologize if this was asked before but couldn’t find much in the search.
My biggest fear was a head-on or hard stop where the tent flew forward into traffic. I installed vertical plates at the leading and trail edges of the tent bag, with the rack rails shifted to just the right points to wedge the tent in place. I got the plates from T-Nutz. For the rails in the middle, I installed eyebolts on either side of the tent and run ratchet straps across the tent to hold it in place. The straps go across/over the tent, not around it. The result is a solid setup using two straps across and plates front and back. Rack.jpg
 
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4wheelrunner

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My biggest fear was a head-on or hard stop where the tent flew forward into traffic. I installed vertical plates at the leading and trail edges of the tent bag, with the rack rails shifted to just the right points to wedge the tent in place. I got the plates from T-Nutz. For the rails in the middle, I installed eyebolts on either side of the tent and run ratchet straps across the tent to hold it in place. The straps go across/over the tent, not around it. The result is a solid setup using two straps across and plates front and back. View attachment 190281
Awesome, great idea! Which rack do you have and are those tie down brackets also from tnutz? They look similar to the Sherpa smileys they make for my rack but have a 2 week lead time.
 
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Old Tanker

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Awesome, great idea! Which rack do you have and are those tie down brackets also from tnutz? They look similar to the Sherpa smileys they make for my rack but have a 2 week lead time.
Sherpa rack with Sherpa smileys. Prinsu makes eyebolts but only one of eight would fit the Sherpa.
 

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Check out how these guys secure really heavy stuff. I’ve seen one go over an embankment and not a single thing broke loose.. I strap down our 65lb 14”x14”x 48” tent using the same method. I don’t trust camstraps. For one, they are only as strong as the human is able to pull them, they do come loose easily. I discovered stratchets a few years ago, and two of them kept the tent neatly in place for 20 or 30 thousand miles.
 
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Check out how these guys secure really heavy stuff. I’ve seen one go over an embankment and not a single thing broke loose.. I strap down our 65lb 14”x14”x 48” tent using the same method. I don’t trust camstraps. For one, they are only as strong as the human is able to pull them, they do come loose easily. I discovered stratchets a few years ago, and two of them kept the tent neatly in place for 20 or 30 thousand miles.
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I use my Stratchits a LOT, both forward on the rack in front of my RTT and on the hard tonneau cover of my trailer. They work really well with Wolf and Cub Packs and just about any gear, really. I hook two together to go further. They see constant use when I'm traveling. I have found I like to change out the galvanized carabiner-type ends for a little larger stainless, so they work with my side cargo tie-downs easier. They also make Stratchit Shorties now, too. I use camstraps for my canoe fore and aft, but Stratchits for all other cargo.

coverloaded_roaddude_6062-900arrow.jpg
 

cgranier

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Check out how these guys secure really heavy stuff. I’ve seen one go over an embankment and not a single thing broke loose.. I strap down our 65lb 14”x14”x 48” tent using the same method. I don’t trust camstraps. For one, they are only as strong as the human is able to pull them, they do come loose easily. I discovered stratchets a few years ago, and two of them kept the tent neatly in place for 20 or 30 thousand miles.
Which guys?
 

cgranier

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I’m planning on taking my new Gazelle T4 out on a trip in a few weeks and decided due to size going to put it on the roof along with some camping chairs. What is the proper way to secure them so it doesn’t get loose on the highway. I’ve been doing a lot of research and seems cam straps would be the way to go as ratchet can get too tight but then theres hooks vs no hooks? I have a prinsu style rack, should the cargo be strapped to the cross bars or side rails, side to side, wrap around tent. Any pictures or detailed instructions would be appreciated, apologize if this was asked before but couldn’t find much in the search.
Thanks for making this thread. I had the exact question (for my T4Plus and cots). Working on making sure our load is as secure as possible.