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Roof Rack for 2017 Ford Explorer Compatible With Thule Hullavator Pro

Question:

Roof rack for Ford Explorer compatible with Hullavator pro. I would like to use Hullavator to load kayak on my Ford Explorer 2017. I have factory crossbars which are not compatible with Hullavator. Therefore, I would like have a new roof rack compatible and also less pricey. As I checked from your website, the best option is Rhino rack vortex. I want to make sure if this is compatible with Hullavator. This is 54” bar, will I get enough extension when I assemble them in my car. As per the instructions for Hullavator, 4”-8” extension required. Thank you for your help.

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Expert Reply:

There is a roof rack for your 2017 Ford Explorer that is compatible with the Thule Hullavator Pro Kayak Carrier and Lift Assist # TH898, although the 53 inch bars of the Rhino-Rack system are not going to be quite long enough to work. Due to that, in order to get long enough bars you will need to go with the Yakima roof rack.

The reason is due to how crossbars mount; they foot pack that attaches to the bars slides into a channel underneath the crossbars. That channel on the Rhino-Rack bars only goes a short distance from the edge of the bars, while the channel on the Yakima bars goes along the entire distance of the bars. I made a diagram for you which shows the underside of both bars so you can see the difference.

So the roof rack I can guarantee will work with the Thule Hullavator Pro # TH898 consists of the 60 inch Yakima JetStream Crossbars # Y00426 (Black), SkyLine Towers for Yakima Crossbars # Y53TR, Landing Pad 19 for Yakima SkyLine and Control Towers # Y00245 as well as the optional Yakima Same Key System Lock Cores # Y07204 for security.

While it is possible the 59 inch Rhino-Rack Vortex Aero Crossbars # RRVA150B-2 (Black) or # RRVA150S-2 (Silver) will work there isn't a way to know for certain because like you mentioned, the recommended length from Rhino-Rack for a 2017 Explorer are 53 inch bars. I think it's more likely than not the longer Rhino-Rack bars will work but cannot guarantee it, though if you want to take a shot the rest of the set up for your Explorer for this rack is the RCH Legs for Rhino-Rack Crossbars # RRRCH4 and Custom RCP Fit Kit # RRRCP45-BK. I've added links to some video reviews for you to check out as well.

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Kyle S

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