Folding Bikes - Airline friendly cases for Folding Bikes?
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05-03-07, 01:35 PM
Hi folding bike folks,
I'm a newbee to this Folding Bike forum, but I've just purchased a KHS Mocha (my first Folder).
For details see:
KHS has a bag available for it, but since I want it to fly with me on trips around the U.S. I am looking for a hard case (suitcase) that I can use to make my KHS Folder stealth (what bike?) checked baggage.
Is there a source for such things? I realize I'll have to get the folded dimensions of the bike to get specific on this, but basically I'm just asking for a link to a source for luggage that will consume a Folding Bike.
Rick / OCRR
05-03-07, 02:30 PM
Samsonite Oyster should do the trick. I thought mine is 31", might be 29" instead. Way too lazy to measure. :D
I'd stick with a hardshell case though. And don't forget to leave a note telling your friendly DHS snoops how to pack the bike properly.
05-03-07, 02:52 PM
The Samsonite Oyster and F'Lite are the two cases most people use. Although the F'Lite is technically two inches bigger than the limit.
Note that you may not be able to fit the bike in one of these cases without a lot of work.
05-03-07, 03:04 PM
Thanks Bacciagalupe and Invisiblehand!
That's the kind of information I was looking for!
When you say "without a lot of work" did you mean further dis-assembly of the bike itself, or just very careful folding of all the bits and pieces (or both?).
Looking at the bike in its folded state, there doesn't seem to be much I could move around to make it smaller,
but I am new at this, so maybe there are things I'm not thinking of (probably!).
Please advise if you have any "make it smaller" helpful hints!
Rick / OCRR
05-03-07, 04:53 PM
Putting most (if not all) 20" wheel folders in a airline legal suitcase usually involves removing wheels, pedals, stem post, seat and seatpost, and rear derailleur from the frame. Sometimes it involves taking the frame apart at the hinge. You can search the forums for a variety of pictures. I have the 29" Oyster and just got the 31" F'Lite and will get around to posting pictures comparing the two using a pair of Downtube VIIIHs when I get my roundtuit.
Not terribly difficult, but a PITA and takes some time.
05-03-07, 09:41 PM
What Pine Cone wrote. Here is an example with the swift ...
Airline friendly and 20" wheeled bikes do not go well if used in the same phrase. if you do a search on this forum you will find out that, after a LOT of practice (I mean, a LOT of practice), my best time putting one bike inside a luggage was 23 minutes. Putting the bike together takes a little longer than that (assuming you will adjust brakes and gears that magically ALWAYS end up messed up.
If you are planning on spending 2 weeks somewhere with your bike, spending 2 hours dealing with the bike (roughly 30 minutes to pack, 30 to setup and repeating the operation on your way back) is quite acceptable. Now when you are visiting 10 cities, 10 different airports in 8 days, spending 20 hours playing with your bike is not the deffinition of having fun unless you are into that kind of stuff (and you probably wear black leather thongs and other stuff too).
I now only consider folders that can go inside a travelling luggage with minimum disassemble. 5 minutes AT MOST. That makes me happy.
Conside this when it is time for you to plan taking your folder with you or leaving it behind. The first time I tried to put the bike inside the luggage took me w a y over 1 hour.
PS: On the other hand, a digital camera, your folder and a remote destination is priceless!!!
05-04-07, 10:09 AM
Thanks to Pinecone, Jur, invisible hand and 14R!
All of the above is very useful information; thanks! This weekend I will try different folding options, i.e. with some parts removed, and/or all parts removed that are "easy" to remove (as has been suggested), and measure, re-measure and take lots of notes and digital photos.
Then . . . I will go case shopping. RE: 20" wheels, for sure I could have gone smaller, but mostly (I guess) being new to folders, the smaller wheeled bikes seemed very unstable in comparison. Okay, maybe it was just me, but that was my perception (am I wrong?). Perhaps with more miles on a 16" wheel bike I'd be okay, but the 12"? I don't think so!
If I plan on staying at a given destination for a week or longer, I'll probably UPS the bike instead of taking it on the airline, in which case a cut down bike-box should be adequate. There are plus and minus factors to UPS vs. Airlines, of course, so lots of variables to consider (hotel or staying with friends?, Taxi from the Airport or someone pickiing me up?, Shuttle to the hotel?), but that is all part of the fun (challenge!), no?
I will read more threads on this forum for further insight and enlightenment re: Life with a Folding Bike!
Rick / OCRR
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