Cargo barriers - yay or nay?

Submitted: Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 19:43
ThreadID: 24629 Views:2550 Replies:12 FollowUps:15
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I've been offered one for $150 for the 80 series, then I just need a fitting kit.
I'm not sure if I want one or not, I sort of like the idea of being able to access the back from the back seat, eg to get drinks out of the Engel on a long trip.
Anyone got any thoughts?
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Reply By: Brew69(SA) - Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 19:50

Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 19:50
The drinks thing is the worst bit lol. But compared to saving a life?????????......Answered in one second. Oh and then theres the bit about being able to fill the back up and bolting stuff to the barrier. Other downer is rear vision but mine goes in or out without any spanners in a couple of minutes. BTW mounting kit for mine was $75 and then install was $100.(i got mine off ebay for $30)
AnswerID: 119835

Follow Up By: GB83 - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 00:14

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 00:14

W had an accident in a station wagon some years ago. Hit a large Jarrah tree. Very solid stopper.

We were just so lucky that no one was hurt by flying fuel drums and tool kit from the back. The rear seat had a great bow in it and it did not take any imagination to realise what could have happened.

Following this I made sure all work panel vans and station wagons were fitted with barriers. We had a cuople of serious accidents where the driver was saved by the barrier.

One of the doubters had prang and lived to talk about the big dent behind his head made by a 4" cast iron valve after a medium speed head on prang on a work site.

I have never owned a station wagon type since but am now looking at a series 100 Tojo.

The first accessory will be a CARGO barrier

FollowupID: 374951

Reply By: KiwiAngler - Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 20:08

Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 20:08 for you and your passengers...put in a reversing camera and then you can 'fill it to the roof'
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AnswerID: 119843

Reply By: Max - Sydney - Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 20:10

Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 20:10
Its a no brainer - you carry a heap of stuff in the back, and it could hit your head real hard if you get into trouble. Shove a few drinks into an insulated bag and stick them on the floor behind the front seats.

Definitely yay!
AnswerID: 119845

Reply By: tiger60 - Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 20:11

Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 20:11
Mate, there is no question, if you pack a bit in the back of the cruiser then save your neck or a passengers and buy the barrier. It takes very little to turn something into a lethal missile in a accident or hard braking situation.
AnswerID: 119846

Reply By: BenSpoon - Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 20:19

Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 20:19
I'll be different and say no.
It stops you getting to your cold brews easily, it opens an opportunity to lock you out of the boot where you keep recovery gear and tools, and it can be a pain on the head the passenger in the middle back row seat.

Find a way of securing your stuff to the car and you're sorted. Got a fridge slide? you're half way there. True, you cant load up to the roofline safely without one, but I seem to recall a need for rear visibility when offroading and driving (was that rule of being able to see out the back window a rumor or law?) and thats what I got a roofrack for anyway.
AnswerID: 119848

Follow Up By: Member - Smocky (NSW) - Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 21:00

Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 21:00
All good points BenSpoon.

Get the cargo barrier though and manage everything else around that.

1. Shouldn't be drinking and driving anyway. The passengers can store a few in a small esky on the back floor. The fact that you CAN reach stuff in the back is the whole problem. IT CAN REACH YOU ALL BY ITSELF !!!!!

2. Keep some basic recovery under the back seat. Particularly snatch strap. Just takes some planning.

3. Use a cushion if needs be.

4. If you have a cargo barrier it's already secured! Sort of, obviously some things still need strapping down, but now you have a nice grate to strap them too !!!

5. Just because you have one, doesn't mean you HAVE to fill it to the roofline. The cargo barrier itself makes bugger all difference to rear visbility.

6. Stuff on the roof lifts your centre of gravity and makes the vehicle more dangerous. Only light stuff should be on the roof.


FollowupID: 374924

Follow Up By: BenSpoon - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 00:29

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 00:29
Each to their own I guess.

I got a fridge and slide so I could use my fridge inside the car. Because my back seats sit flat on the floorpan, I got rear drawers to securely put gear in, and I only put swags and chairs go on the rack, but thanks for the tips.

FollowupID: 374952

Follow Up By: Member - Chrispy (NSW) - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 08:01

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 08:01
A mate of mine had his 40L Engel sitting on a fridge slide that is commonly available and strapped down using the Engel's handles - like everyone does.

He hit an obstacle on a dirt road at night. The handles let go and the fridge (full of beer) came through to the front cabin and killed his wife.

If you think for a second that 60kg of fridge sitting on a slide and strapped down is safe - think again.
FollowupID: 374965

Follow Up By: Member - Smocky (NSW) - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 09:32

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 09:32
Chrispy, that's aweful. I've never heard anything like that before. I've just always thought about small things coming through and so have always thought they were a good idea, but NEVER would have thought of a loaded fridge coming through like that.

I actually thought I wonder how many people would have a small gas bottle, fire extinguisher, can of food, axe or anything like that sitting in the back.

Ben, I certainly agree, each to their own and my comments weren't directed at you as such. What I offered was counter arguments to your reasons why you didn't use one. I didn't think there was any good reason NOT to have one, but certainly a few good reasons TO have one.

Cheers all,

FollowupID: 374977

Reply By: Member - Captain (WA) - Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 21:34

Monday, Jul 11, 2005 at 21:34
Like most of the others above, I reckon you should have one. I take my two kids with me as often as I can and reckon the slight inconvinience of no direct access to the rear at times is more than worth the extra safety.

One thing others haven't mentioned is the rollover protection it adds to the vehicle. I have seen a cruiser after it rolls and reckon the cargo barrier acts like a rollbar, right where my kids are! By the very nature of 4WDriving, we place our vehicles in arguably more precarious situations than normal, thus I want better protection than "normal", particularly for my kids.

Is getting a can from the engels while driving more important than the added protection of a rollbar? The choice is yours!


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AnswerID: 119875

Reply By: Dave from Fraser Coast 4WD Club - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 06:59

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 06:59
they should be compulsory!
AnswerID: 119905

Follow Up By: Member - Smocky (NSW) - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 09:17

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 09:17
I agree.

I always had one fitted to my Falcon Wagon.
FollowupID: 374974

Follow Up By: Mike Harding - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 09:29

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 09:29
People should be allowed to make their own choices in regard to their own safety.

Compulsion in this regard is an unhealthy attempt to control others and force them to conform to your view of life and how it should be approached and there is far too much of that in Australia already.

Mike Harding
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Follow Up By: Member - Smocky (NSW) - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 10:16

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 10:16
Yep, agree with you too, In principle.

Do you think seat belts should be compulsory?

Having the cargo area of any vehicle share the same space as the passengers is very dangerous.

They aren't standard because they put seats in the back, and that would be one reason to NEVER have a cargo barrier. If you use those seats, forget it. BUT if it's a cargo area, then it should be separate.

Whilst I agree that we shouldn't be trying to legislate to tell people how to run their lives, I do agree in some cases on making things we buy safer.

I was probably a bit hasty to agree they should be compulsory, but I think in this case it has merit to discuss and I was more so agreeing with the sentiment that that's how strongly I feel about having one.

As usual Mike, you make me work through my thoughts :)
FollowupID: 374982

Follow Up By: Mike Harding - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 10:58

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 10:58
Hi Smocky

>Do you think seat belts should be compulsory?

No I don't or crash helmets; for the same reasons I don't think rock climbing or downhill skiing or bushwalking should be regulated. These are areas where if I make a mistake or am foolish the only person to suffer will be me and just like the right (I should have!) to take my own life those decisions are mine to make - not the State's or the general populous.

I'm not arguing against cargo barriers or seat belts - they are good things and I always wear mine - seat belt, that is, not a cargo barrier :)

Some years ago when I owned a saloon car I wouldn't even keep the street directory on the rear window shelf. A 1 kg book hitting your head at (say) 30 kph would do you no good at all!

>I do agree in some cases on making things we buy safer.

Sure. And that is the job of government.

Mike Harding
FollowupID: 374987

Reply By: ADM - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 07:43

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 07:43
We had an 80 series on a trip and it rolled down a hill for about 100 meters in the Vic High Country, the cargo barrier was the only thing that saved them from serious injury. It acted like a roll cage and prevented the roof from completely collapsing.

A member who was on the trip did not have one but by Tuesday the following week had one installed.

After seeing the advantage of having one first hand, IMO it is the best safety item you can have on a 4WD.

AnswerID: 119908

Reply By: Shawn - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 08:16

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 08:16
Why do you need to ask other people what you should do??
AnswerID: 119911

Follow Up By: Member - Smocky (NSW) - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 09:21

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 09:21
I think if you're not sure about something, asking for some feedback or advice is OK. It may seem a silly question AFTER you see the feedback, but that's the point of asking.
FollowupID: 374975

Follow Up By: Shawn - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 10:47

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 10:47
OK, I apologise, probably sounds hard and meaner than intended, but on
matters of safety there should be no questions.
Barrier or strap it as mentioned earlier.
FollowupID: 374986

Reply By: scottywiper - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 10:54

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 10:54
Thanks all.
I originally wasn't keen, but it seems I'd be mad not to in light of all that advice, so I have told the guy I'll take it.
Thanks again.
AnswerID: 119932

Reply By: Member - Jeff M (WA) - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 14:33

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 14:33
Not for everyone, be careful if you own a 100s LC or a 4runner/surf or any vehicle where things can get jammed up against the back door and prevent you from being able to open the back door and access ya gear. Not being able to get drinks out while driving along may be an inconveinence but not being able to get to your water or food or sleeping gear or recovery gear could be just as life threataning as being in a car accident.

A) If you secure your load correctly that's the main concern taken care of.
B) There are other ways around the problem such as my home made storage box that leave only a small gap at the top (enough to slide through on your belly if you needed to, but not enough for any of my large plastic tubs to get through).

I mean it may be perfect for you, and they are good, however they are not the ONLY solution as some people try to dictate on here. They also can be dangerous in certain situations too.

And as far as all the hype about roll overs goes, when I was a kid and we lived up north our family was in a roll over in our 1982 Jackeroo. It rolled over 2.5 times at 80km/hr half way between Port Headland and Marble Bar and there was NO cargo barrier, however there was a large esky and a heavy ply tucker box and there were no serious injuries, plus we had to evacuate the car via the back (as it was on it's side and the gutters had bent over the doors). If there was a cargo barrier in the car it would have prevented us from getting out so easily.
AnswerID: 119967

Follow Up By: bundubasher - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 17:38

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 17:38
I was going to agree with everything previously said until I read Jeff's post - someday we may neede to get out the back window of my 4Runner but until then I use a homemade luggage guard. Cost me nothing except a few hacksaw blades and it is a brilliant place to lash thingfs to. The majority of my kit is in the back but my fire extinguisher etc are velcro strapped on the passenger side of the barrier.

When loaded we have reached a GVM of 2.9 tonnes (NVM 1.9 t) and most of that has been in the back and the thought of that little avalanche landing on my kid was a bit scary.

Since I put the barrier in myself where are the normal ones attached?

FollowupID: 375048

Follow Up By: Member - Jeff M (WA) - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 17:46

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 17:46
The 4runner has an electric window that you have to wind down to even open the back door. Those windows are renowned for failing at the worst times (very common problem on surfs and 4 runners). If itbleeps it's self in the middle of no where and you have a cargo barrier you have no way of getting the back tailgate open other than smashing the window. (not a very good option IMHO, then all ya gear will fall out on the drive home!!).

I made a home made storage system as well as I posted previously, it stops all the big heavy items from being able to fly forward (we don't have any loose items in the back, it's all either packed, in the storage box or on the roof). All the recovery gear is in the storage box above the water tank behind the back seats and is fully enclosed and bolted to the chasis with pergola type 6mm steel brackets.

I am happy that my kids are safe, and I'm also happy that I've taken all options into consideration, not just one.
FollowupID: 375051

Follow Up By: Member - Jeff M (WA) - Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 18:01

Tuesday, Jul 12, 2005 at 18:01
Bundbasher, I just had a look through your website too, interesting.
Personally I wouldn't be worrying about replacing your sway bar bushes either, I'd just take the sway bars off alltogehter! Hav'nt had mine on for over 12 months now and never looked back.

Never seen a 4runner with a padlocked mesh rear end before !! LOL Holey crap, I spose you gotta do what you gotta do...

Good work though, sounds like you've been having a ball!
FollowupID: 375054

Follow Up By: bundubasher - Friday, Jul 15, 2005 at 02:17

Friday, Jul 15, 2005 at 02:17
The dodgy rear window mechanism was one of the reasons I put mesh over it - at least it'll be secure if the window jams/breaks. I've seen guys put bricks through car side windows at traffic lights, reach in and make off with whatever they can grab and the back window always seemed like an open invitation to me. My sand plates cover the rear side windows and so with the luggage guard it makes a nice secure box to leave your kit in when you're buggering around some sleezy bit of town!
FollowupID: 375509

Reply By: geocacher (djcache) - Thursday, Jul 14, 2005 at 00:52

Thursday, Jul 14, 2005 at 00:52

A full tissue box on the parcel shelf hitting you in the back of the head in a 100kmh crash will almost probably kill you, and if it doesn't will probably leave you in a wheel chair.

A Melway or Sydway sitting on the parcel shelf will come forward and do the same at about 60kmh.

A tool box will take your head clean off your shoulders.

Go with the cargo barrier. You are a very long time dead. Spending the rest of your life in a wheel chair as a quad may however feel longer.

Fact: The handle of a club lock will fit into your eye socket in a roll over...
(Happy ending - they found the guys eyeball down inside his cheek still attached to its bits and pieces and he regained some sight in it later....)


PS How many of you have a street directory in the back at head height in the Commodore/Falcon or similar??

PPS Where's your 8kg or so of recovery gear??
AnswerID: 120282

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