Sport Car Top Carrier Set Up Guide

Packing The Sport Car Top Carrier

It is important to clean the roof of your vehicle first. You may use the Rightline Gear Non-Skid Roof Protection Pad (Fig 1) under the car top luggage carrier to further protect your roof and to keep the carrier bag from moving.

It is easiest to load your Sport Car Top Carrier on the top of your vehicle with its closed end facing forward. Make sure the roof rack is secure to your vehicle and don't load over its weight limit.

The Sport Car Roof Carriers un-zip ¾ of the way around their top (Fig 2) for easy loading. Place items with sharp or pointed edges in the middle, packing softer items around them. Remember that the car roof carriers are aerodynamic, so they will be shorter in the front and taller in the rear-load your gear accordingly.

Pack the cargo bag full so that the sides are pulled tight to prevent excess material from flapping in the wind which can damage the bag and cause the load to shift, loosening the straps. 

Packing the car top carrier

Closing The Car Top Carrier

Engage the ZipRight Zipper system and fold the protective flap down (Fig 3). Make sure to secure all of the Velcro closures. The PackRight Security Cable Lock (Fig 4) can be used to secure the cargo bag on your vehicle. Run the cable through the two zipper pulls and around the roof rack before re-connecting it to the lock. Adjust the cable for a tight fit so the lock doesn't bounce around.

Closing the car top carrier

Attaching The Carrier To The Vehicle - WITH A Roof Rack

A properly packed Sport Car Top Carrier should look like the picture below (Fig. 5)  when you are finished attaching it to a roof rack.

Attaching carrier to vehicle

The Sport 3 and Sport 1 Car Roof Carriers come with a set of 4 straps (Fig 6). When using the Sport 3 and Sport 1 Car Top Carriers, attaching two straps front to back between the cross bars or two straps side to side between the side rails will sufficiently secure the carrier, however, using all four straps provides the most secure method of attachment.

The Sport Jr. Car Top Carriers come with a Car Clip Strap Set (Fig 7). When using the Sport Jr. Carrier on a vehicle with a roof rack, remove the clips from the ends of the two straps. You may use the two straps front to back between the cross bars or side to side between the side rails.

Strap Sets

The set of 4 straps consist of two strap pieces connected through a center buckle.  You need to unthread these pieces from the buckle and secure the short piece to the roof rack by threading its end through its loop and then pulling tight (Fig 8).  Do the same with the long strap piece on the opposite side of the vehicle's rack.  Pull both straps through the carrier bag's d-rings and (Fig 9) and bring them together on top of the roof carrier.  Thread the short strap piece back through the center buckle (Fig 10).

Attaching the Straps

Attaching The Luggage Carrier To The Vehicle - WITHOUT A Roof Rack

If your vehicle does not have a roof rack, you can use one of two methods to secure the roof carrier to your car:

Attachment Method 1: Through The Vehicle

Run the Straps (Fig 12) provided with the Sport 3 and Sport 1 Car Top Carriers through the open doors of the vehicle and around the cargo bag to secure the load. The clips may be removed from the Sport Jr.’s Car Clip Strap Set to use the straps in the same way.

Attaching Through Vehicle

Begin by taking one of the straps and unthreading the short strap piece from the center buckle so that you have two separate strap pieces.  Next, connect the loop ends of each strap piece back together (Fig 13).  Run this strap through the open doors of the vehicle, going through each d-ring on the sides of the roof bag bringing the two ends back together over the top of the carrier.  Then rethread the short strap piece back through the buckle to complete the circle (Fig. 14) and tighten appropriately to secure the bag.  Repeat this process with a second strap.

Attaching the Straps

With larger vehicles, one strap may not be long enough. If that is the case, you can connect two straps together.  Leaving one strap as originally provided, take the other strap and separate the strap pieces by unthreading from the center buckle.  Take each of those pieces' loop ends and connect each one to the loop ends of the strap that was left intact (Fig 14).  This will give you one double long strap that you can run through the vehicle, through the d-rings and rethread through the center buckle on top of the cargo bag (Fig 15) as described above.

Joining The Straps

Attachment Method 2: Using The Car Clip Strap Set

The Car Clip Strap Set (Fig 19) (included with the Sport Jr. Carrier) is used to attach the cargo bag to the vehicle's door frame.  This option is generally preferred because it eliminates the need for a strap going across the inside roof of the vehicle. Each Car Clip Strap requires a sturdy ledge inside of the car door opening for connection. You can use a rain gutter, a metal ledge, a ledge under the weather molding, or the outside of the weather molding itself.

Attaching With Car Clip Straps

Each strap has two strap pieces connected through a center buckle.  Unthread the short strap piece from the buckle and thread both the short and long strap pieces through the d-rings on each side of the cargo bag.  Rethread the pieces back through the buckle (Fig 20) when the two ends meet over the top of the roof bag.  Clip the ends of the strap in the open door frame and tighten the strap at the buckle. The door of the vehicle is shut over the clips/straps, securing them in place (Fig 21).

Attaching the Straps

Final Adjustments For All Straps

Each strap’s long piece has a plastic tri-glide (Fig 22) to secure the extra length of the strap so that it doesn’t flap around in the wind. Be sure to check all straps before driving and tie off any excess length (Fig 23). If the straps are too long, cut off the extra length and melt the cut end to prevent fraying.  The strap tension from one side of the vehicle to the other over the top of the cargo bag secures the load. Position the straps at least 20” apart on each side of the vehicle (Fig 24).

Final Strap Adjustments

It's a good idea to do a short test drive before you begin a long trip and continue to check the straps regularly throughout your trip.


The Sport Car Top Carriers comes with a stuff sack (Fig 25) for convenient storage (13" L x 11" W x 6" D) when not in use. The stuff sack has a draw string closure.

Rightline Gear Stuff Sacks

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