Hey thanks Colin for renewing the forum. It will be helpful to all of us.
I have basically finished my Expedition here in N. Texas, but It has been parked in the hot sun this summer, and on one of my hatches the gasket deteriorated. It almost looks like ants ate through it. What kind of gasket material would be good or better if any?
Our drought here has hindered my plans to descend the Red River last spring. Then my SUV died and I am driving a Honda Civic which I'm not sure I could put some type of rooftop rack to get it to the water. Does anyone have experience with small cars mounting? I hope to start my trip when it gets a bit cooler.
Congrats on almost having your Expedition completed. Yes, extreme heat can be hard on neoprene, leaving it permanently compressed. I would imagine silicone (which is very heat resistant) would work well, but a quick look on Google doesn't reveal much of a selection of slicone hatch seals. Alternatively, perhaps solid rubber might fair better. The D-style rubber hatch seals look like they would conform well to gaps, and perhaps be a little more robust (we have that for sale in our local marine store). With regards to car-topping - we've transported our Expedition on every type of vehicle imaginable. If you have two cross bars, it's ideal, but you can also transport it with no roof-rack at all. For that, I put two foam blocks to support the boat near the ends of the roof where it's stiff and won't bend under the weight. I then run ratchet straps over the boat and through the interior of the car (have the doors open to install these - not through the window frames). I then affix two ropes from the bow and stern of the boat and affix them (with tension) to the tow points at the front and back of the car. A trucker's hitch works nicely to tighten up the bow and stern lines.
I'll check around here for gasket materials. I never considered using the roof! I've tied canoe and kayak up there, I just figured the expedition would be too heavy. But it's worth a try. Would you leave the riggers on or off?