The Curve Lock Down roof rack strap system is an excellent bit of kit. It looks a bit more “technical” than other systems I have used, but it help an SUP board and two surf boards on two different types of car (one with roof bars and one without). It is one of these systems that are described as soft roof racks or soft racks, that do not need an actual rack to work as they either fix onto roof bars or through the doors.
The system comes in a bag that you can sling into your luggage if you are taking a flight. Once you arrive you can have it rigged onto the roof in about 5 minutes.
The first thing that you notice when you open the bag is how well made all the components are. Like all curve kit the quality is very high and all of the straps and pads are solid. The pads are excellent and they will keep you board safe and make sure that the rails do not get crushed. The only thing I would consider is putting a towel inbetween the roof and the straps to prevent sand scratching the roof. The other way of doing this is to make sure that you brush sand off before you put the straps on. A lesson learned there.
The first car we put the lock down straps onto was a Volvo with roof bars that run along the sides of the car (see photos) the straps wrap around the bars and secure the boards in the middle. I am fairly sure you could get two SUP boards, maybe three at a push) onto the system. We swapped cars later on and tried it on a Audi with no roof bars. The straps have to go through the doors (not the windows, you only make that mistake once, as you end up having to do a Dukes of Hazard to get in and out!) and tighten on the top.
The best thing about the lock down straps is that it is a very quick system to get on and off. You place the straps on the car, then the boards, you wrap the straps through the bars or doors, connect the hook system over the top then tighten. It does not take much longer than putting boards on a conventional roof rack.
If you travel and take boards with you it is well worth investing in a set of these straps, it essentially means you can hire any car (except a softtop ;)) and not have to worry about how you are getting your boards from a to b. They get a five star rating from me !
The Curve Lock Down was kindly provided by Thain Leisure. Avaliable for £39.99.