New Product Test - The Seizmik Rac System
We’ve seen all types of bolt on attachments, but we’ve never seen anything quite like the Kubota RTV RAC system developed by Seizmik. It won’t make you faster, your engine more powerful, or your machine more capable of climbing the dunes or slogging through muddy fields, but it absolutely excels at turning a hard-working UTV, like the Kubota RTV, into a four-wheeled work platform. It’s your truck, your shop, your toolbox, and your work buddy all in one tough, mobile package.
The Kubota RTV RAC, or Rapid Attachment Cargo System, is a modular load carrying system that can be bolted onto the side of your UTV and can be configured in a nearly endless possible combination of racks, shelves, tool holders, and storage boxes. The system is expandable as well and if your needs change in the future, you can reposition your existing racks, add new pieces, and get back to the job with all your tools at hand. As a partner with Kubota in developing the system for the RTV 900 and RTV 1100 utility vehicles, Seizmik’s parent company, VIALINK, specializes in working with OEMs to develop hard-working accessory lines, whole vehicles, and a host of other products in the hardware and work categories. Their product development team works directly with OEM teams where they share factory engineering, market research, and test data. This is a huge advantage for insuring proper fit and long term durability. The RAC system alone underwent over 100 hours of fully loaded vibration, fatigue, and durability testing.
Nuts & Bolts
Like other Seizmik rack systems we’ve tried in the past, the RAC system for the Kubota RTV is well made and built to last. The backbone of the system is the large diameter steel tube uprights which mating parts attach to, and although we didn’t try it, it would probably be possible to pick up the entire vehicle by hanging it from a properly installed RAC system. Cross members and cargo racks are built from steel tubing as well, and all of the parts in the RAC system are precision formed, pre-drilled, free from sharp edges or burrs, and coated with a super tough, powder coat finish for excellent corrosion protection. We were also happy to see Seizmik uses zinc plated metric fasteners to hold it all together.
Installing the Kubota RAC system is relatively easy and requires only ordinary tools. Since the RAC system is designed for heavy duty work, it must be mounted securely to the vehicle, and that means drilling a few holes to bolt it in place. For the most part, Seizmik used existing bolt hole locations wherever possible, but a couple holes must be opened up slightly for a larger bolt. If you’re capable of using any of the equipment you can haul with the RAC system, you’re capable of installing it easily as well. Just like with all Seizmik parts, there is a clear set of instructions with pictures and after a couple steps, it’s very intuitive. Luckily, there isn’t much in the way where you are trying to work, and raising the bed gives you clear access underneath. On the Kubota RTV 900, you will need to temporarily remove the rear fender for RAC installation, but that’s only four bolts and they are easy to get to.
We were especially happy to see SEIZMIK uses a nut plate rather than just a washer and nut wherever possible. The nut plate offers much better surface area and clamping force, and really helps anchor the RAC to the bed side rails. We also like how Seizmik beefed up the Kubota bed with new stiffener ribs under the box that the RAC system bolted to as well. A torque spec is listed for all bolts, but to be perfectly honest, we usually just tighten everything nice and tight. We never fully tighten any bolt, however, until all the mating pieces have been installed and are in the correct final position. Total installation time was about an hour, but we recommend you have a buddy help with installation. It’s much easier to maneuver and fit the large pieces with another set of hands.
To the Job Site
With the RAC system installed, it practically inspires us to head off to a tough job site, ready to clear brush, cut timber, and push dirt. The Kubota and the RAC system were made for it! Before you go charging too fast into the woods, though, there are a couple things you might want to remember about the RAC system.
In some configurations, a loaded RAC system means your overall vehicle width has increased and you don’t want to be carving slalom-like through the trees or you may be picking up leaf blower parts behind. Also, depending on what tools you’ve got riding in the rack, one overhanging limb will turn your long handled shovel into a short one in a hurry. We feel a set of center and side mirrors would be a worthy investment and would definitely make it easier to see around the equipment you’ve got hanging off the side. Basically, it all comes down to being aware of your vehicle’s size and limits, no different than if you were driving a tractor, a truck, or any other piece of equipment. Once at the job site, the Kubota is still fully functional as your mobile work platform and the bed can still be used and dumped as normal with all tools and racks attached. Thankfully, the binding on the bed basket trays locks them in place so they won’t slide when dumping the box. All the baskets also come with cargo nets to keep things contained, but you’ll probably want to strap everything down, especially for crossing rough terrain. You may dump out the contents of your buckets by tilting the bed, but the racks will still be securely attached. You will want to consider how you load the RAC system as well, keeping heavier tools as low as possible for a lower center of gravity. For best handling purposes on any vehicle, lower is always better.
Seizmik on the Job
The Kubota RTV RAC system definitely increases the Kubota’s versatility. The innovative thing about the RAC system is that it allows you to attach all the baskets and tool holders on the outside only, inside only, or on both the outside and inside at the same time. The attachments don’t interfere with each other so it really opens up configuration options. It’s the Transformer of the load carrying world! For many, a Kubota RTV RAC system would completely replace a panel truck and we can think of an endless amount of tasks and work crews this would be perfect for. Whether you are a landscape crew hauling yard tools, a rancher fixing fence, a nursery carrying dozens of plant seedlings, a municipal crew toting traffic cones and maintenance tools, or a construction and survey crew installing utilities, the Kubota RAC system is going to be one very handy tool. It’s the best and most versatile hard-working rack system we’ve ever seen.
The Kubota RTV RAC system was developed by Seizmik for Kubota and is available exclusively through Kubota dealers.