Bicycle Mechanics - flying with bike tools?
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12-22-08, 09:11 PM
so i'm headed home for x-mas tomorrow, and i'm taking a bike home with me to leave. i'm already going to be paying $100 to take the damn thing with me (it was $50 on air tran to san fran...) and continental charges for any checked luggage, meaning i'm probably going to carry on my bag with clothes/etc.
while i can pack the tools in the box with the bike on the way down, since i'm not bringing the bike back i gotta take the tools in my bag. has anyone had any experience taking bike tools as a carry-on? i wouldn't anticipate any trouble, but something like a pedal wrench can look a little violent...
12-22-08, 09:23 PM
They are going to go through everything in your carry-on. At least they did the only time I carried on bike tools and that was in the early 1990's. I was able to bring it all on back then. I'm not sure about now.
You might have a problem tools over 7 inches long. From the TSA website of prohibited items.
Drills and drill bits (including cordless portable power drills) No
Tools (greater than seven inches in length) No
Tools (seven inches or less in length) Yes
Screwdrivers (seven inches or less in length) Yes
Wrenches and Pliers (seven inches or less in length) Yes
NOTE: Any sharp objects in checked baggage should be sheathed or securely wrapped to prevent injury to baggage handlers and Security Officers
12-22-08, 09:46 PM
Regardless of what the TSA website says, I personally would not risk attempting to carry on tools, at least not ones that I wouldn't want to throw away. You do not have much time to argue your case that something is not a dangerous weapon when you are standing in the security line (nor do you really want to). My recommendation would be to UPS/FedEX your tools back to your place. If you send them right before you leave, you'll be there before they arrive.
My friend lost a pedal wrench trying to carry it on and I almost lost my nice hex bit sockets when I later visited him because security tried to tell me they were drill bits.
12-22-08, 10:48 PM
Put them in a box and mail, or UPS, them back to yourself. Probably won't cost more than $10.
12-22-08, 11:36 PM
I got stopped at a security gate for having a bike wrench over 7in and had the choice to loose it there or put it in my checked baggage which we had already curbside checked. I opted to go find my checked bags which were retrieved and the wrench made the trip safely but it was quite a bit of trouble so consider putting them in checked baggage or mail as suggested.
12-22-08, 11:37 PM
They took my multi-tool once.
So I'd be very hesitant to bring tools in the carry on. Your best bet to so check it in. Or ask the desk when you check in.
12-23-08, 12:26 AM
As a pilot, I go through security a lot and there is quite a bit of difference on how the rules get interpreted at different airports. Even on the TSA website quoted above they mention the agent has final say ... even when the item is supposedly allowed. It sucks they are charging for any checked bags on some airlines, but consider checking one and putting the tools in it.
12-23-08, 01:50 AM
I just flew Cont this weekend...it's only $15 for the first checked bag...so it'll be a close tradeoff between UPSing it and checking it...
12-23-08, 01:38 PM
My friend lost a pedal wrench trying to carry it on and I almost lost my nice hex bit sockets when I later visited him because security tried to tell me they were drill bits.Considering that most of those TSA inspectors came right off the welfare line, it doesn't surprise me that they don't know the difference between drill-bits versus allen-keys. Every single time I go through those lines, I have some kind of issue.
12-23-08, 02:09 PM
When I last flew, they took a screwdriver a half inch too long, and short (1') lengths of rope I use to tie stuff down to my rack with. What a pain. I figured 'close enough,' but I figured wrong.
12-27-08, 05:10 PM
I would follow the advice of mailing your tools or checking them. I have had TSA agents take very benign things that don't seem to pose a threat. I even had a small lightweight rounded carabiner taken with the explanation that I could bludgeon someone with the tiny thing. They probably aren't trying to be jerks, but they may not receive the best training.
12-27-08, 06:37 PM
Don't carry on tools. Check them or mail them. If you check them in your luggage put them in a separate box. Mark it with your address, bicycle tools and itemize everything.
12-27-08, 07:06 PM
Its just a fact of life that people with power will abuse said power. If they ever blatantly disregard the tsa standards you should cause trouble.
12-28-08, 01:21 AM
Check in your bag with the tools and next time fly Southwest if you can...no bag charge. I will be testing the checking in of my Ritchey Breakaway Cross bike in Feb on a trip to California.
12-28-08, 11:32 PM
I've been stopped for bike tools every time. Once I was let through with a full size Park peddle wrench and a stern warning but every other time I've been told to check it or lose it. They also really don't like you trying to carry 9sp cassette clusters or spare front chain rings through.
the people who work for tsa at the airports are a bunch of power hungry *** hats that couldnt make it as cops!!!!!!!!!!! I fly damn near every week and I cant tell you how many times I have had the stupidest problems with those *** clowns. and dont even think for a minute you are safe putting your stuff in your checked bag, read the disclaimer. they are not responsible for things in your checked bag, especially if thier baggage handler x-rays the bag and sees something they want they can and do just help themselves and there aint poop you can do about it. itemised list or not they just arent responsible. our airline industry is a load of crap. should terorists decide to attack our country again, those cheap fat wastes of flesh at the tsa wont be the ones that stop them! unless they are trying to smuggle dougnuts on board.
12-29-08, 02:25 AM
is just not flying an option? I will travel by amtrak or bus only in the U.S. and will go out of my way to cross a border to Canada or Mexico for international flights(which i rarely do take)
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