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This kind of photo gets tool guys grinning — mostly because at one time or another we’ve all uttered the sentence, “Yeah, it’ll fit.”  A few cargo straps and a little shoving here and there, and you can pack half your house into one vehicle.

A tip-o-the-hat to whoever put the 2×4’s across the luggage rack before they got the couch on top of the minivan. We’re guessing they actually got their cargo to where they were going, if they kept their foot out of it. Props to ambush27 for the sweet pic.

Toolmonger Photo Pool [Flickr]


12 Responses to Loading Up The Car

  1. Matt Soreco says:

    Would you drive behind him on the highway? 😉

  2. bemis says:

    I’ve seen WAY too many people overload their roof racks, particularly with home-made contraptions made of lumber or copper pipe…

    How secure do you think the factory rails really are? I don’t think I’d trust them to hold down my couch-sail complete w/ jerry-rigged 2×4 load bars

    Friend of mine bought one of those load straps to hold long pieces of lumber on the roof of his Hyundai Santa Fe, ended up breaking the factory rail after overloading it, he’s luckily he didn’t send 10+ pieces of lumber flying through people’s windshields potentially killing someone

  3. Noname says:

    What is the benefit of the 2×4’s?

    I’ve loaded many a car down to where the springs cried out and crumpled down like soda cans. With large loads, the rails are mostly useful to prevent the roof from caving in, not to provide secure tie-down points. Run your straps through the doors.

  4. Chris says:

    Well, for starters, those 2x4s make it possible to put the couch on there the long way, rather than across the rails. That by itself is reason enough to use them, as I wouldn’t dare drive around with a couch twice as wide as my car on top of it even if I had a roof rack that I knew was up to the task.

    They also allow a bit of flexibility in where the weight of the couch is distributed to the roof rack rails. They’re positioned in the photo so as to transfer most of the weight of the couch close to the mounting points of the rails, which is the best way to avoid damage to the rails. Putting weight in the middle of the rails would be more likely to bend them, and using two 2x4s instead of three on the curved roof rack guarantees that the couch will make contact with all cross-members and distribute the weight as evenly as possible.

    I don’t think I’d worry too much about driving behind this guy; the raised tailgate should serve as a nice deflector for any pieces that try to come over the back :-p I just wouldn’t want to be driving as slow as he’ll have to.


  5. Tony says:

    I still think most people don’t need pickups or SUVs, but this is a good case where having one would be nice. I would just pay the few bucks to have the stuff delivered or to rent an appropriate vehicle (still wouldn’t waste my money actually buying a pickup).

  6. aaron says:

    how about a van? what is this reluctance to have a decent, practical van?

  7. Bill says:

    Couches don’t weigh that much, but it’s the ratchet straps that worry me. Don’t buy any, you can pick them up for free along the interstate. . .

  8. Zathrus says:

    what is this reluctance to have a decent, practical van?

    What do you mean by that? A Ford Econoline? A GMC Savana? They’re more expensive, less flexible, get worse gas mileage, have worse handling, and have fewer creature comforts than a top-end minivan (like the Honda Odyssey or Toyota Sienna). And while they seat a lot more people than those do, they don’t really haul more cargo — any of the minivans from any manufacturer make it easy to remove or collapse the seats to convert into a cargo hauler. Good luck removing those bolted/welded in seats on a full-size van.

    There’s a number of very good reasons that the old full-size “conversion” van industry has tanked in the face of minivans.

  9. PutnamEco says:

    Zathrus Says:
    they don’t really haul more cargo.
    Load 25 bags of cement in that mini van, and then tell me about cargo capacity.
    The extra height of a standard van is also a plus if your carrying motorcycles (dirt bikes), you can easily carry three upright. Last ime we tried to put a dirt bike in a minivan we could only carry one and it had to ride leaned over.

    any of the minivans from any manufacturer make it easy to remove or collapse the seats to convert into a cargo hauler. Good luck removing those bolted/welded in seats on a full-size van.

    Most of the full size vans that I know of, have seats that come out by lifting a couple of latches, which have a bar going across the mounting hole that makes a nice tie down point.

  10. Robert G says:

    By the way, that’s not even a minivan. It’s a Volvo V50 station wagon.

  11. aaron says:

    er, i meant vans, particularly utility (child molester) vs. pickups for hauling.

  12. ambush27 says:

    Good call on the car Robert G. Just for those who are curious the rated capacity of the roof rails are 175 pounds, probably enough for a sofa, the bad part is that’s a sofa bed. We were only going about 10 blocks though. Besides who hasn’t overloaded a vehicle in some capacity before.

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