Should I Put Golf Clubs In A Roof Cargo Box?
As someone who’s played golf for more than 30 years, I personally wouldn’t remotely consider putting my golf clubs in a roof cargo box. The main reason being they are just too heavy. My usual trolley bag with a full set of clubs, balls, umbrella, waterproof top et cetera is pretty heavy just getting in and out of the trunk. There’s no way I would want to lift it into a roof box even on a small car.
Even if I used my carry bag and half a set of clubs it is still quite heavy to lift up to head height to place in a cargo box.
As an example, my Ping Hoofer stand bag is about 12.5″ x 12″ depending upon how much stuff I’ve stuffed in the pockets so even for this stand bag you need to look for a cargo box with a height of around 13 inches to give yourself some leeway. If you’d like to store a tour bag on your roof then you’re going to need to look at one of the taller options.
The only occasions where I would consider it feasible to carry golf clubs in a roof cargo box is if I was only using a Sunday or pencil bag and a small number of clubs or I was moving other extremely heavy items that need to go in the back of the vehicle leaving me no choice other than the roof.
Don’t forget that these boxes are really designed to carry bulky but lightweight items. This is for two reasons. Firstly it will be difficult to lift heavy objects up onto the roof of your car and secondly because there will be a weight limit on how much you can stow on the roof of your vehicle.
Depending on how much stuff you carry in your bag you might be surprised to learn that your golf bag might weigh as much as 50lbs (23kgs). Even a typical amateur will have a bag weighing around 30-35lbs (13kg-16kg).
While many of the boxes listed below have features to prevent their contents from moving around don’t forget that the clubs in the bag will probably still move around as you turn and brake. Make sure to add some padding to prevent your clubs from moving around while you travel. This should prevent you from unloading your clubs at your destination only to find your $500 driver has snapped its head off!
I’ve tended to use golf towels, waterproof bottoms or my rain jacket when padding my clubs for flights.
For those of you that have decided to use a roof box to carry your clubs here are some suggestions for suitable options.
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Summary of Roof Boxes For Golf Clubs
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INNO Wedge Plus Cargo Box
This roof box was originally designed for winter sports and is great for carrying skis or snowboards.
It features an inner mat that that is designed to prevent the contents from slipping and sliding around in the box. This should help prevent damage to your precious golf clubs.
A big advantage of this particular model is the ability to open the box from either side to access your belongings.
The Inno Wedge should suit most cars and shouldn’t cause problems with opening your rear hatch.
It has an aerodynamic design that will reduce fuel consumption and minimize road noise while traveling. The downside of this is that you may struggle to fit larger bags inside.
With an interior height of only 11 inches, you are likely going to need to bring a carry bag or even a pencil bag.
Thule Sidekick Cargo Box
Thule is one of the most well-known roof top cargo box manufacturers. This particular model has interior dimensions that are probably just about sufficient to handle two sets of golf clubs in carry bags or smaller trolley bags. I think it is unlikely you would squeeze a tour-size golf bag inside.
With an interior length dimension of only 48 inches, you may find it a bit of a squeeze to fit your driver in particularly if you have a longer than standard driver. Typically drivers would be in the range of 45 to 46 inches.
Another tip that I’ve used when flying is to add an old wooden broom handle into the bag that is slightly longer than your longest golf club. This then takes the brunt of any bangs and would help keep your golf bag in position particularly in this cargo box given its length.
If you want a box that is durable and strong but not too large, this is a great option.
You can put your clubs in the box, but also attach other items to the roof rack at the same time because it’s small enough. The U-bolt installation makes it easy to attach the box when you need it the most.
This box includes 2 locks so it should be enough to put off any casual thieves. It requires more assembly than many similar cargo boxes, but it’s not that tricky to put together.
Yakima RocketBox Pro 12 Box
Yakima is another well-respected roof box manufacturer and the RocketBox Pro 12 model should be able to take care of most golfers looking to carry their clubs in a cargo box.
Like the INNO Wedge, this Yakima storage box has an aerodynamic design to minimize the impact on your fuel economy. Its smaller size means it will be better suited to a wider range of cars in particular smaller vehicles. However, it is still large enough to carry your golf clubs or a wide variety of other gear.
The RocketBox Pro is fitted with SKS locks which are among the strongest on the market. While no security system can ever offer 100% protection these locks should be good enough for the majority of cases
The best features of the Yakima RocketBox Pro 12 include:
- Can be opened from both sides
- Improved clearance for rear hatch
- SKS locks
- Quick-dial mounting
The maximum weight capacity of this box is only 75 lbs which is lower than some others on the market.
Thule Force Cargo Box
The tallest cargo box featured at 17 inches. If you’re looking to carry a tour-size golf bag then this might be your best option. In fact, given its width, you could probably fit 2 tour bags inside.
The box can be accessed from either side and the fitting mechanism doesn’t need you to have any special tools in order to attach it to your car.
With many cargo boxes, the manufacturers won’t go so far as to say that they are weatherproof only weather-resistant. If I was traveling with my golf clubs in a roof box then I’d probably add some plastic sheeting around the box to make doubly sure no rain was able to enter.
Should I Put Golf Clubs In A Roof Cargo Box: Summary
While I’m not sure that a roof box is necessarily the best way to transport your clubs you now have four solid options depending on how big a bag you are intending to carry.
Don’t forget that a set of golf clubs are quite heavy so you will use up a large part of your weight allowance even with just one set of clubs. Make sure that you don’t overload the cargo box beyond its recommended weight limit or the limit for the roof of your vehicle.
It would probably be a good idea to have an extra person around to help you lift the clubs in and out of the box as well.