Author Topic: Bike Box  (Read 1442 times)

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Offline wplutnick

Bike Box
« on: April 15, 2012, 11:16:23 am »
Planning a cycling trip from Northern Europe (Netherlands) to Southern Europe (Italy). Taking a coupled touring bike on the plane. I would like to return to the US from Italy. After I reassemble my bike, I have a box and tools that I don't want to carry with me during the tour, but need when I get to Italy for the return flight home. Has anyone found a solution for this one?

Offline John Nelson

Re: Bike Box
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2012, 12:38:42 pm »
Use a cardboard box. Throw it away at the start and get a new one in Italy. Carry the tools with you, as you may need them for adjustments and repairs en route.

If you really want to use a hard-shell bike case, you can mail it ahead to a hotel in Italy (with prior arrangements) where you will spend the night before your return (or to an agreeable Warm Showers host in Italy). Chances are pretty good, however, that you won't like the price of this and will find advantage to the first solution.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2012, 12:42:37 pm by John Nelson »

Offline Mark Manley

Re: Bike Box
« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2012, 11:06:37 am »
As John says, go to your local bike shop and get a cardboard box that they come from the factory in, dump it in Holand and get another in Italy. If you do go for a hardcase make sure it is not too big for oversized luggage, I was at Heathrow airport a few months ago flying out for a tour of India and a couple with hardcases could not take them as they were bigger than the oversize allowance, my box had no problem.

Offline Ike

Re: Bike Box
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2012, 06:19:10 pm »
I've had no problems when using a cardboard bike box on airline flights. However, the box can get beat up. To reduce the risk of damage to your bike, I would highly recommend lining the inside of the box with an extra layer of cardboard as well as using an excessive amount of packing tape on the outside of the box.  Cover the entire bottom, top, and ends of the box with tape, and it never hurts to tape the sides thoroughly either. This usually goes a long way towards keeping the box in one piece or tearing apart. I've nearly covered my current cardboard bike box with packing tape and I've been able to use it several times.

Packing tape is cheap. Your bike isn't.
Enjoy the trip.

Online DaveB

Re: Bike Box
« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2012, 07:17:07 pm »
I've had no problems when using a cardboard bike box on airline flights. However, the box can get beat up. To reduce the risk of damage to your bike, I would highly recommend lining the inside of the box with an extra layer of cardboard as well as using an excessive amount of packing tape on the outside of the box.  Cover the entire bottom, top, and ends of the box with tape, and it never hurts to tape the sides thoroughly either. This usually goes a long way towards keeping the box in one piece or tearing apart. I've nearly covered my current cardboard bike box with packing tape and I've been able to use it several times.

Packing tape is cheap. Your bike isn't.
Enjoy the trip.
Also, use "travel axles" (pieces of wood dowel or plastic pipecut to fit snugly) in both the fork and frame dropouts to protect them from crushing and put several reenforcing rods (plastic pipe sections) across the width of the box for the same reason.

Offline JayH

Re: Bike Box
« Reply #5 on: April 18, 2012, 09:19:55 am »
+1 on the standoffs between the fork mounts and rear dropouts, if you've saved some that come with frames, even better.

You can also buy cheap pipe insulation that will protect the tubes from being dinged. I've seen downtubes and stuff that have been dented through shipping before..

Jay