Roof topper on the Gunbarrel

Hi All,

We'll be on the Gunbarrel and Sandy Blight Junction Track in late April,early May. Not having done this before I'm after some feedback; we'll be in a 76 series Cruiser, towing a Complete Campsite Exodus 11 camper trailer and we want to take a tinnie on the roof.
Tinnie is 3.7m and will be carried on an Almac rack/loader, a total of about 110kgs on top.

Simple question; would you carry a roof topper down the Gunbarrel?


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Reply By: The Landy - Tuesday, Mar 17, 2015 at 07:01

Tuesday, Mar 17, 2015 at 07:01
Hi Nick

The vehicle and camper will be fine and whilst it is a fair amount of weight on top of the vehicle providing you drive to the conditions (corrugations) I can’t see you will have any problem with it.

Is there provision to carry the car-topper on the camper trailer (just a thought?)…

We were on the Anne Beadell and Sandy Blight last year with 769 & 76 Series Toyota’s both towing TVANS, a great trip and the Sandy Blight has become a favourite of ours.

You can read some more about our trip here...

The Sandy Blight Junction - A Living Postcard

Enjoy, Baz – The Landy
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Reply By: Mick O - Tuesday, Mar 17, 2015 at 07:22

Tuesday, Mar 17, 2015 at 07:22
Nick, a good rule of thumb for these iconic and heavily corrugated outback tracks is;

"If it can vibrate or work its way will!"

If you make checking the roof rack and boat mounts part of your daily routine (or every major stop during the day like lunch), you should be right.

I'm not familiar with the roof topper racking systems but if there are nuts and washers involved, make sure they are good quality nyloc type and always carry a few spares. Cheap insurance really.

Safe travels

''We knew from the experience of well-known travelers that the
trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
Richard Maurice - 1903

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Reply By: Member - Nick H - Tuesday, Mar 17, 2015 at 07:51

Tuesday, Mar 17, 2015 at 07:51
Thanks for the quick responses, good sound advice.

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Reply By: Member - Tony F8 - Tuesday, Mar 17, 2015 at 18:47

Tuesday, Mar 17, 2015 at 18:47
Not being overly familiar with the area, was just wondering where you might be using the tinnie out that way.
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Reply By: Member - Nick H - Tuesday, Mar 17, 2015 at 19:51

Tuesday, Mar 17, 2015 at 19:51
We're on the road for 9 months; departing Melb start of April, hitting Geraldton mid May after coming across from the centre, then heading north roughly following the coast clockwise back to Melb by Xmas. Hopefully plenty of opportunitities!

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Reply By: MARIC - Wednesday, Mar 18, 2015 at 09:51

Wednesday, Mar 18, 2015 at 09:51
Ahhhh soooo LOL
Have a great trip.
It is only when you see mosquito land on your testicles that you find another way to solve problems without violence

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Reply By: 671 - Wednesday, Mar 18, 2015 at 22:15

Wednesday, Mar 18, 2015 at 22:15

What is the load carrying capacity of the roof rack and the weight of the tinnie? It is not a bad idea to have plenty in reserve in those conditions.

The last time I looked at the web site of the Mt Dare Hotel in the Simpson Desert, they had a list of the most common breakages that they had to repair. Broken roof racks were at the top of the list.

What you have to consider in rough conditions is the difference between weight and mass. Weight is just a measure of the pull of gravity while mass is the amount of material in an object.

When your car is bouncing up and down on roads like the Sandy Blight and the Gunbarrel, your tinnie will be going up and down with it. Its weight will not change but the forces generated by the moving material in it most certainly will.

To understand what I mean, carefully place a brick on your bare foot and it will not hurt. Pick it up about 250 mm and drop it onto your foot and you know what will happen. The weight of the brick has not changed but the material in it has built up momentum and it does not want to stop.

This is what any material on a roof rack is doing as the car moves. It does not matter which end of the car is going up or down, the tinnie will have to be caught as it falls or heaved up instantly as the car rises suddenly.

Imagine what this will be doing to the rack over hundreds of ks of unmaintained desert tracks if it is loaded up to its limit before you start.

I would not be surprised if owners failing to understand the weight/mass difference is the main reason why there are so many broken chassis, axle housings, roof racks, wheel studs etc. in the bush.
AnswerID: 551187

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