Shipping bikes

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ken jessett

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May 15, 2022, 5:29:41 PMMay 15
to Randonneurs USA
I'm about to take my bike overseas (UK) and want to know what type of box/bag others have found to be successful in negotiating airport check-ins.
I have an older version of the Bike Pro box - given me some years ago by a fellow randonneur - and not needed till now but will be prepared to buy something else if recommended. .
I plan to fly either United or BA both of which say no charge for the box - we'll see about that. ;-)
Thanks for all input.
Ken J.

Eric Nichols

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May 15, 2022, 11:22:32 PMMay 15
to Randonneurs USA

There was a good recent discussion of this topic over on the Randon Google Group:

ken jessett

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May 18, 2022, 6:31:43 PMMay 18
to Randonneurs USA
As part of my investigation into bike case, I thought I would also check on the cost of having the bike shipped for my ride in the UK. This is what I found:

Luggage Forward has given me a quote to ship the bike from Houston to the UK for $549 and to ship it back for $579, or $1,128 total.

Ken J.

Mitch Friedman

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May 19, 2022, 12:21:15 AMMay 19
to Randonneurs USA
Ken,
it has been a while since I traveled with my bike but I have 2 hard cases for bikes. I have always checked it on my flight it was always cheaper to do it that way and depending on airline sometimes it was free
I am sure things have changed but I would add it as a bag you can always put all your cycling clothing in it as it will never be overweight. Heck I came back from Italy after a few weeks and it was not overweight but close to it.
Just a thought
Mitch

ken jessett

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May 19, 2022, 2:51:58 PMMay 19
to Randonneurs USA
It's just that the bike box is a big thing to have to lug around.

Once off the plane - if the bike box gets accepted 'onto' the plane that is - I'll have Heathrow Airport to contend with then the long - long - walk and multiple stairs - they do have lifts but not that big, to the Paddington Express where bike reservations are not possible and the trains are crowded, then onto the mainlines at Paddington in London where I will have to 'persuade' the gate people to let me take the bike onto the train (bike reservations on British trains are a very hit and miss adventure and only limited to six bikes at best).

I was really just looking at other options to save me the hassle. ;-)

Ken J.

Phil Elmer

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May 19, 2022, 4:00:27 PMMay 19
to ken jessett, Randonneurs USA
I've got an EVOC bike travel bag that's hard framed but soft sided, and has wheels. I've travelled quite a lot with my fancy lightweight carbon thing in it and never suffered any damage. (UK/US/Korea and back again)

I've also got a GroundEffect Tardis, which is a fully foldable soft bag that you have to carry, and as long as you strap everything down well and stick some padding in, it also seems fine. Having said that, I only ever use that for my Surly, so when i check it in I fear that the plane might get damaged. Used that to fly from UK to NZ and back.

I have also (once) used a normal bike box to ship by fedex from NY to CA and when it arrived the box was completely battered - brake levers sticking out through holes in it, the works. But again it was a Surly so I feel sure that the fedex delivery vehicles came off worse. The bike emerged bruised but smiling.

Hope this helps a bit.




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ken jessett

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May 20, 2022, 10:21:31 AMMay 20
to Phil Elmer, Randonneurs USA
I probably should stop obsessing over this, but first time you know?
Anyway, the options continue, one suggested by Gary about the locker idea:
Left luggage at Heathrow will take the bike box - should I want to sit on a cold concrete floor in a dark corner of a forgotten world and remantle (is that a word?) the bike at a cost of 135 pounds for fifteen days. Weight limit is okay at 32 KG = 70 lbs.
3 months to go before D Day, so I have more time yet to fret.
Ken J,.



Greg Merritt

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May 21, 2022, 10:20:02 AMMay 21
to Randonneurs USA
Ken, I paid to store my bike box at CDG for about three weeks for PBP 2019. I traveled solo and packed light so I could ride away from the airport with 100% of my luggage on the bike. About €220 for complete mobile care-free freedom! 🤗

I used a wheeled bike box that packs the bike with the rear wheel still installed. Front fender, front wheel, and seat/post come off, and handlebars disconnect at stem and dangle by the cables. (With some bikes in this box it’s even simpler, as you can get away with simply loosening & rotating the bars out of the way rather than disconnect them.)

CDG had seats in a quiet, well-lit spot right next to the luggage storage service. ;)

2DB16585-19C1-4307-98B8-006696318445.jpeg

-Greg

ken jessett

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May 22, 2022, 10:03:43 AMMay 22
to Greg Merritt, Randonneurs USA
Hi Greg,

That looks like a cardboard box, was it reusable?

Ken.

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Greg Merritt

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May 22, 2022, 10:06:58 AMMay 22
to ken jessett, Randonneurs USA
Absolutely reusable, by design.

It’s the AirCaddy box here:

-Greg

ken jessett

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May 23, 2022, 11:41:20 AMMay 23
to Greg Merritt, Randonneurs USA
Interesting video, it all makes packing the bike look so easy.


Thanks,

Ken.


elliott sherburne

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Jun 4, 2022, 1:17:34 PMJun 4
to Randonneurs USA
Very timely thread. I'll be flying via Air France to CDG in July and was looking for just such a conversation. 

R Williams

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Jun 5, 2022, 5:29:31 PMJun 5
to Randonneurs USA
I use a Scion soft bag for my Domane, hydraulic brakes,  the handle bar remains in place, wheels are removed and placed in side pockets.  Four wheels ease travel through the terminal.  Delta did not charge extra for a recent trip to Florida.  Pre pandemic trips to Europe on Delta had an extra charge for the bike, although British Air and KLM (side and return trips) did not charge extra.  On all trips the bagged bike had to be retrieved from the oversize baggage counter. So far, no damage to the. bike has occurred.

Patrick Conneely

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Jun 5, 2022, 10:17:33 PMJun 5
to R Williams, Randonneurs USA
- I second the Scicon bag for the reasons below; use it for the road bike w hydro discs, non-removal of handlebars.  Stuff it with a couple pillows too.  Rolling around on the wheels is really easy. Kind of awkward to pick up, don’t really trust trying to take it on an escalator.
- for anything other than the hydro disc road bike, the EVOC case is my absolute go-to for anything.  Have had it 7+? years, probably dozens of flights, including 3 international and never an issue.  Can take it on an escalator.  Internal supports can be removed easily to mush down a bit and make room in the rental car.  Can’t recommend highly enough.
- my original bike case was a Trico Iron Case for its protection…it’s basically a coffin.  However, TSA has to open it and with the plastic buckle closures and clamshell design, it took 3 tries of TSA botching closing it back up to move to the EVOC….they can manage zippers.  Still use it for shipping though.

Regardless of case, I’ve found the Orucase frame protection set to be worthwhile.  However, prior to that made my own cut-to-size set from foam pipe insulation which worked just as well (maybe better) at a fraction of the $.

Sent from my iPhone

On Jun 5, 2022, at 2:29 PM, R Williams <rsun...@gmail.com> wrote:

I use a Scion soft bag for my Domane, hydraulic brakes,  the handle bar remains in place, wheels are removed and placed in side pockets.  Four wheels ease travel through the terminal.  Delta did not charge extra for a recent trip to Florida.  Pre pandemic trips to Europe on Delta had an extra charge for the bike, although British Air and KLM (side and return trips) did not charge extra.  On all trips the bagged bike had to be retrieved from the oversize baggage counter. So far, no damage to the. bike has occurred.
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Garry Knox

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Jun 6, 2022, 11:17:17 AMJun 6
to R Williams, Randonneurs USA

 Delta stopped charging extra for bikes in 2019. They just treat a bike as another bag now. Just be careful about the weight. If your bike bag weighs more than 50lb you will be charged extra.

 I have a Scicon bag too. It has worked well as others have explained. For other trips I have rented a case from my local Sports Store where shipping & receiving options are available (like Ragbrai). The Sports Basement store in the Bay Area for example has good options & can be more cost effective if you don't travel a lot with your bike. 

 Garry

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Richard Williams

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Jun 6, 2022, 1:39:45 PMJun 6
to ga...@goterps.com, Randonneurs USA
 Interesting, Delta hit me with a $150 charge for the bike on a July 2019 trip to the UK.  They probably dropped the charge after the summer travel rush.

Richard
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