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General Forum : Roof Box

- BMW E21 Community
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      - Roof Box
chupchup   Posted Wednesday, Dec 20th 8:15am [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Post nr. 120
Ok Guys

My family has grown (a lot) and now I have to use a roof box (u know the Thule thingy). Now I have never driven long distances with a box on me roof before, so I need some inputs for those who have.

I want to know if there is a lot of differences when I mount a box on top of the car in terms of handing, driving charactics, etc. Can i still drive at my usual speeds (130 to 160 kph) on the motorways.


velocewest   Posted Thursday, Dec 28th 11:42pm [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Post nr. 554
Oregon USA
e9, e12x2, no E21?
You should check the Thule recommendations for load, and also BMW's. Most car mfrs don't recommend you put much weight on the drip rails, usually no more than 75lbs/35kg.

You'll likely see a reduction in fuel mileage due to the additional aerodynamic drag, and you may notice more sensitivity to crosswinds due to presenting a larger surface.

chupchup   Posted Monday, Jan 8th 10:10am [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Post nr. 128
thanks but I m more concern with the handling and driving, that is can I drive normally as I always do?

fuel consumption is really secondary.

pjs323i   Posted Monday, Jan 8th 10:29am [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Post nr. 51
Canberra, Australia
'81 323i
OH MY GOD! YOU DO 130-160KM/H ON THE HIGHWAY THERE!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

wow, you'd be lucky to get to 120 here in Oz

ichiwan2   Posted Monday, Jan 8th 3:48pm [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Post nr. 259
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
The fastest I have driven was 195km/h in my dad's Merc 300SE (W126). Still had room to go faster but ran out of road.

KenDanielson   Posted Tuesday, Jan 9th 4:17am [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Junior Member
Post nr. 192

Petaluma CA
'82 320is, '78 320i
I made a cross country trip years ago in my old '83 320i with a large square roof box. We were moving so it was pretty full as well as the trunk being fully loaded down.

DEFINATELY slow down in the turns, it will handle MUCH worse due to the huge rise in the CG. After a few miles you will get a sense of what you will be able to do with it, when in doubt-slow down. You don't want to get upside down with your family in the car.


AlaskaBimmer   Posted Tuesday, Jan 9th 9:32am [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Post nr. 17
Anchorage, Alaska
1981 323 Baur, 1978 320i, 1979 320i,
Make sure you use some kind of a rack to mount the box too, I have a roof box I mounted on my chevy Cavalier (traded that car for my first BMW the E-36) without a rack just used the pads and the clips for a non rack mount and it ended up scuffing the roof where the little pads made contact with the paint. No matter how tight I got those straps the wind would vibrate the box enough to to scuff the paint. I did go from Texas to Alaska so that was a 4100 mile trip. i found with my heavly overloaded cavalier I got at times 36 mpg, but I could only go about 65-70 mph since that was all the little 4 cylinder in that car could do with that big box on the roof and all the weight in the car.

chupchup   Posted Thursday, Jan 11th 10:46am [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Post nr. 137
pjs323i wrote:
OH MY GOD! YOU DO 130-160KM/H ON THE HIGHWAY THERE!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

wow, you'd be lucky to get to 120 here in Oz

Errrr OK, I was on an island off Goowah south of Adelaid a fews years back. Rented a Camry, found a straight road, did about 160+ kph for about 3 mins before I ran out of road. Yeah wife and 2 kids at the back too.....

chupchup   Posted Thursday, Jan 11th 10:52am [Edit] [Quote] [IMS] [View car]
Post nr. 138
Hey thanks guys. I think the square roof boxes u describe r the UHaul ones?

Yeah I m fortunate enough to own a complete Thule Rack and Roof Box set.

Thule (and BMW) told me that with this set I can ever jump over humps and rolling hills.........I guess I can believe them but just that I have never tried it and I have the silly box in the store for the last 8 years and have never used it. Need to use it now........ March holidays are coming, will use the bow if not flying!!!!

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