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Using 2 Yakima ShowDown Kayak Carriers on a 78 Inch Thule Square Bar on a 2014 Dodge Grand Caravan  

Question:

My cross bars are old square thule 80inch bars. Can I fit two sets of Yakima showdowns on these bars. For left and right side of vehicle.

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Helpful Expert Reply:

This will be an extremely tight fit, but you should be able to put two Yakima ShowDowns, part # Y04081 on a pair of Thule 78 inch crossbars equipped to your 2014 Dodge Grand Caravan. If you actually have a set of 80 inch bars, you won't have any trouble.

Prior to installing, be sure to verify your vehicle's roof capacity with your owner's manual or manufacturer. This capacity will include the weight of the rack, both carriers and the kayaks you are planning on carrying. Based on my research, it appears that the 2014 Dodge Grand Caravan has a roof weight capacity of 150 pounds, and the ShowDowns plus the current Thule SquareBar Kit come in at about 60 pounds, leaving you with about 90 pounds for your kayaks.

Based on Thule's installation instructions for the current Square Bar kit, part # THKIT1043, your front bars should have about 16 inches of bar space on either side of the vehicle, and your rear bars should have roughly 17 inches of overhang on each side.

With the outside clamp installed about 4 inches away from the tower, your ShowDowns will sit approximately 2 inches apart on the front bar and about 1 inch apart on the rear bar, which is plenty of operating space for the ShowDown. This will also help the ShowDown clear your mirrors when pulling it down.

When using this setup, I strongly recommend checking local laws and ordinances for any load flagging rules that extend past the sides of your vehicle, just to be safe. If you do need to flag your kayaks, Erickson Mesh Safety flag # EM05307 will work well.

For ease of tying down your bow and stern, I recommend adding the Malone Quick-loop points, part # MPG308 to add a pair of mounting points to the hood and rear hatch of your vehicle. This means that the hook won't touch your vehicle's finish and reduce the risk of damage while travelling.

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