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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

We just got a roof rack to hold our luggage on vacations. I had no idea the luggage basket would be $337!

To those of you that use the roof rack: is the basket really necessary? Is there a better and cheaper way to hold luggage up there?

Thanks!
 

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What kinds of items do you want to store up there? Do they need to be secure?Protected from rain or sun? Do you have storage at home for a basket or box?

Soft bags are cheapest for the volume, but look for one that has a rigid base. Ones that are designed to fit between the rails on a minivan roof won't work on the Element's roof rack.

Baskets can range from the less expensive Rola (and likes), about 4" deep, to the Yakima and Thule ones (6" deep, with the option of adding bike racks on top).

Boxes range from 7-8 cubic foot ones like the Thule Sidekick (under $200) to large and expensive ones.

A bag or basket is fine for just driving to Grandma's, when you won't leave the contents on the car for any length of time (not even over night at a motel). A closed box is more aerodynamic, and provides more protection.
 

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got one meant for a subie for $20. Most people don't use them and it becomes a junk in the garage. just have to wait. got mine off craigslist from a guy that used it once.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
thank you all very much for your pics and ideas...we'll figure our what our best option is, using all your input!
 

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Here is an option that I wish I would have taken advantage of-

A local bicycle store that sells both Yakima and Thule racks and accessories has a Yakima locking cargo box that they rent out. This would have been more convenient as you wouldn't have to find a place to store your cargo box when you weren't using it. Check the Bike shops in your area
 

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Rola makes a nice cage around $200+/-.
sixstring: nice setup! tires/rack everything! (pssst... specs on those treads?! ;-) )

As for the roof rack itself, Thule sells a bunch of different options. Cargo boxes (in a bunch of shapes/sizes), and at one point, they sold a rail-like platform (with no 'basket' per se). Always been a fan of the Thules stuff....
 

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sorry about taking so long to awnser fightingzero. The tires are Kuhmo Kl 71 mudders 225/75R16. Gave $480 installed and desposal of old goodyears.
Thanks for the comps.
 

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quick cell pic
 

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Why wouldn't you just get the Yak "Basketcase". I don't think I paid over $100 and it fits a good number of items.

Also, I put my rear sunroof in the basket all of the time with one bungy to hold it down. It fits perfectly and looks like it was made specifically for that.
 

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ORS Racks Direct is having a 10% sale through friday w/ free shipping on orders over $99. I forsee a LoadWarrior for $225 in my near future :)
 

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Keep a search open on eBay- I just got a Rola cargo basket, practically new with cargo net for $136.00, shipped- and from another seller a practically new Rola Platypus cargo bag for $45.00 shipped.....never pay retail. bubbeh!
 
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