Dennis R

Front Bumper Rod Rack Question

19 posts in this topic

I have been thinking about getting a front bumper rod rack and was wondering if it is a good idea to travel on the highway with rods.   Do you have a roof rack for traveling and switch to a front rack for convenience on the beach?  If you travel, how do the rods fare?  Any help would be appreciated.  Thank you.  

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Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do.  Rods up front are open to damage from road hazards, low tree limbs and sometimes even low wires. Additionally if you a make a stop for coffee or  breakfast the rods can be easily  stolen unless you post someone on  guard.
Roof racks work but I never left the reels on the rods for the same  reason of letting some crackhead at a food or supply stop have free reign over your equipment. I have seen complete sets of rods go missing at a surf fishing tourney awards ceremony where guys left their rods in the rack . There is some ways to lock them up but it seems to not work all that well, if the crooks want them they are gone. I am lucky enough now to have a full size SUV that will take 10 ft 1 piece rods inside very comfortably making them outta sight,outta mind.

Once on the beach, rods go in the rack 

Edited by Capt Buck

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Thanks for the reply.  Just got a new vehicle and I am weighing my options.  I can fit my rods inside for security which  is definitely a great concern.  I have the opportunity to get a front rack and I know that would be real convenient on the beach, still with security in mind.  I was curious about travel.  Thanks again.

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Dont travel with the rods in a front rack. They will get damaged or worse. One decent stone chip on today's graphite rods will cause a failure when the pressure of a fish is applied. Carry them inside if you can, or in a roof rack. There are many ways to adapt a locking ski rack for some security. Nothing is perfect though.

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Thanks for that @StuC, I have eliminated the idea of traveling with them on a front rack but would probably use one once on the beach for convenience.  I do have a locking type roof rack and need to get a new crossbar setup to use it.   My old crossbars were rail mounted and now I need to go with a gutter mount.   Thanks.

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On 7/19/2020 at 10:31 AM, StuC said:

Dont travel with the rods in a front rack. They will get damaged or worse. One decent stone chip on today's graphite rods will cause a failure when the pressure of a fish is applied. Carry them inside if you can, or in a roof rack. There are many ways to adapt a locking ski rack for some security. Nothing is perfect though.

 

This .  I know a zillion guys do it, but with a graphite its inviting problems.   Maybe not so with an older glass rod.

 

If using roofracks (because I cant fit them inside) and traveling on the hiway, I always use at least rod socks as well, for the same reason. 

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I'll do short distances with rods in the front rack, especially with passengers inside.  I only live a few miles from beach buggy access.  Guides always face the rear, that way nothing hooks on branches, wires, etc.  If I'm wading out to the bar with my back to the truck, rods go inside the SUV.

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I just got a roof rack off Craigslist.   Excellent condition, great deal.  Now all I need to do is install my rod racks on the bars.   I will post some pictures when it is all set. I may still get a front rack to use on the beach. Thanks to everyone for your replies and help.

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On 7/20/2020 at 5:19 PM, Darth Baiter said:

I'll do short distances with rods in the front rack, especially with passengers inside.  I only live a few miles from beach buggy access. 

My rule of thumb is is that if I can drive with the tires aired down, I can leave the rods up front. If I am going to be driving fast enough that I gotta put air back in my tires, the rods go inside. 

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I have jeep and look around at jeeps a lot ,some guys put their rods on the rear utilizing the spare tire braket. My Suburban surf buggy is for sale in BST here ,as I'm getting my own Jeep a Gladiator,  Mojave Sept./Oct. I'm a bad boy, if I'm down Hatteras or Delaware, once I air down, tires are down for the week and rods if not in garage or on rack for security are on the front rack. I have some nice custom rods and have been hitting the surf fishing thing since 1978, never had a problem. The closest I had to a problem was three vehicles ago a 1995 Tahoe with a rear rod rack backing up to tournement HQ in Dewey beach at the Starboard, the roof overhung the parking space stops by feet, yup couldn't see the rods ran into the gutter, but no damage to rods, only damage I suffered was building a front rack, I will never be without vision of rod tips.....Jack

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My favorite rods-in-the-front story is the guy who drove into a gas station on LBI with about a half-dozen rods up there. He failed to notice that A) his rods, which were surf rods with long butts, didn't clear the ground by that much, and B) that there was an enormous dip in the entrance (sidewalk cutout) to the gas station. He learned these two facts at the same time, when the sound of snapping rods brought both to his attention. 


It shouldn't take ruining two grand worth of custom rods to make one realize the dangers of carrying rods in a front hitch-mounted rack. They are great for driving the beach, but otherwise, eh, put them on the roof or inside the vehicle, in a place where the hazards of the road can't reach them.

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Whatever you decide I would make sure the rod butt does not sit below the tube on a front mounted rod carrier. I've seen dozens sheared off over the years on the beach.

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