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  1. #1
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Travel cases and trailers

    From time to time, I have read questions about fitting a bike in a suitcase for air travel, so I started to work toward solution about three years ago. I wanted to have to have a case that was within the airline limit of 62" to avoid oversize-bag fees, it had to be very durable and lightweight, and it had to be easy to convert into a trailer. So, we developed a 30" x 20" x 11.75" polypropylene case that holds our 20" Origami Crane 8 without too much dis assembly. We also developed a trailer kit that fits neatly inside with the bike and takes only minutes to assemble.

    I wanted to make this all very practical, so we have a 22" carry-on bag for your clothing and other items as well. These are fully-lined premium cases that can be used for all travel needs, not just your bike.

    Plus, we used colors that will make the bags easy to recognize and very attractive. Let me know what you think.

    20150416_163053.jpg20150416_160241.jpg20150416_160604.jpg20150416_160822.jpg20150416_160906.jpg20150416_161646.jpg20150416_162340.jpg

  2. #2
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinigis View Post
    I wanted to make this all very practical, so we have a 22" carry-on bag for your clothing and other items as well.
    It's a great idea. I would make sure that it's easy to strap the carry-on to the top of the trailer too.

    Don't forget ... even though there is a size limit, what agents always check IME is the weight limit. You might want to check that bike plus suitcase plus trailer parts are all less than 50 pounds for US travel. Some wiggle room is a big positive.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by invisiblehand View Post
    It's a great idea. I would make sure that it's easy to strap the carry-on to the top of the trailer too.

    Don't forget ... even though there is a size limit, what agents always check IME is the weight limit. You might want to check that bike plus suitcase plus trailer parts are all less than 50 pounds for US travel. Some wiggle room is a big positive.
    My idea was that the carry-on would go inside the larger case once the bike has been removed, but I suppose you could strap it to the top if you wanted.

    The Bike + case + trailer is under the 50 lb. limit. I will post a total weight over the weekend.

  4. #4
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    The Axle hitch You show has been found Vile , I suppose its what was given you by your PRC source company

    I offer Thule-Chariot elastomer ball and stainless socket as Much Better.https://www.bikekidshop.com/thule-ch...de-p-1601.html

  5. #5
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    The Axle hitch You show has been found Vile , I suppose its what was given you by your PRC source company

    I offer Thule-Chariot elastomer ball and stainless socket as Much Better.https://www.bikekidshop.com/thule-ch...de-p-1601.html
    The hitch is actually very nice and was chosen from among many options. The coil spring offers plenty of flexibility (like the ball and socket in your example) and the attachment process is pretty simple. I am very pleased with the performance of this hitch.

    20150416_162401.jpg

  6. #6
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Looks very promising. I'll be very curious to see how much these cost. But this is something I've been planning on doing for a while...

    (Bike Friday has a suitcase trailer kit that's similar).

  7. #7
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    OK I get the sales man's defense of their inventory , Maybe offer the consumer the options to make their own Pick

    Industrial High Pressure air hose quick coupler based hitch Bike Friday uses for their suitcase Trailer works OK , Too..

    I used the Connectors in their Original setting.. Air turbine Motor grinder in shipyard & Big compressor in the Bottom of the Dry dock .



    Aosom is where The $100 eBay trailers come from . Their Hitch Bike Trailer Universal Hitch Coupler

    people already have trouble using them on many bike configurations. (As Read on these Pages)


    I use the Ball hitch with my Brompton towed Carry Freedom City trailer the rear wheel under fold is unimpeded by having the trailer attached ..

    the typical Fold-in-half Bike , You have to take the trailer off anyhow.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cplager View Post
    Looks very promising. I'll be very curious to see how much these cost. But this is something I've been planning on doing for a while...

    (Bike Friday has a suitcase trailer kit that's similar).
    We have not yet put these on our website, but the cases will be $149.00 for the 30" and $89.00 for the 22". The trailer will be $89.00, but we may do a package deal for all three pieces at $269.00.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinigis View Post
    Let me know what you think.
    Looks good, and quite similar to the Bike Friday concept. I like the bright colors and have an additional suggestion. On my first trip with my Bike Friday I was running later than expected getting back to Heathrow airport in London. As the sunlight faded I realized that my bike was properly outfitted with lights and reflectors, but there were none at all on the trailer/suitcase (which in my case were dark grey). I rectified that with lots of reflective stickers before my next trip - but it would be nice if the suitcase came with reflectors and possibly a place to mount a tail light.

  10. #10
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prathmann View Post
    Looks good, and quite similar to the Bike Friday concept. I like the bright colors and have an additional suggestion. On my first trip with my Bike Friday I was running later than expected getting back to Heathrow airport in London. As the sunlight faded I realized that my bike was properly outfitted with lights and reflectors, but there were none at all on the trailer/suitcase (which in my case were dark grey). I rectified that with lots of reflective stickers before my next trip - but it would be nice if the suitcase came with reflectors and possibly a place to mount a tail light.
    That's not crazy at all.

  11. #11
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    More options are good, but the setup looks to me too close to Bike Friday in terms of, sorry to say, flimsiness. When I get out of the flight, possibly quite exhausted, I do not want to fiddle with washers and cotter pins. I want a sturdy straightforward setup such as that of Radical Designs or Wike.

  12. #12
    Senior Member CliffordK's Avatar
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    Any chance you could use an extension handle like is common on luggage as part of the trailer tongue? Unfortunately that might require a straight-pull hookup, perhaps like the Burley Travoy, or perhaps a rack with a center trailer hitch.



    My Swiss Army bag has a bit of an odd rounded shape, but the single pole might be strong enough to use as a trailer tongue. It is, of course, a soft backpack convertible suitcase.


  13. #13
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prathmann View Post
    Looks good, and quite similar to the Bike Friday concept. I like the bright colors and have an additional suggestion. On my first trip with my Bike Friday I was running later than expected getting back to Heathrow airport in London. As the sunlight faded I realized that my bike was properly outfitted with lights and reflectors, but there were none at all on the trailer/suitcase (which in my case were dark grey). I rectified that with lots of reflective stickers before my next trip - but it would be nice if the suitcase came with reflectors and possibly a place to mount a tail light.
    We do have white and red reflective tape for bottom of the case, and we have LED taillights that fit to the center of the bottom of the case (I will post a photo soon).

  14. #14
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
    Any chance you could use an extension handle like is common on luggage as part of the trailer tongue? Unfortunately that might require a straight-pull hookup, perhaps like the Burley Travoy, or perhaps a rack with a center trailer hitch.



    My Swiss Army bag has a bit of an odd rounded shape, but the single pole might be strong enough to use as a trailer tongue. It is, of course, a soft backpack convertible suitcase.

    I don't see a way to use the extension handle because it is centered in the case and could only go over the rear wheel (like that shown in your first photo). Since our trailer frame snaps together, and is pretty light, I think we have a very solid solution.

  15. #15
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinigis View Post
    My idea was that the carry-on would go inside the larger case once the bike has been removed, but I suppose you could strap it to the top if you wanted.

    The Bike + case + trailer is under the 50 lb. limit. I will post a total weight over the weekend.
    It certainly could. But when we were traveling, there was always extra stuff to carry.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Will a Brompton fit in this?
    Rivendell Sam Hillborne and Hunqapillar; Brompton M6R Sage Green; Salsa Mukluk 3 FAT Bike; Nerdy Academic; Nikonian; Wing Chun; and a Patridge in a Pear Tree.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by invisiblehand View Post
    It certainly could. But when we were traveling, there was always extra stuff to carry.
    There is still room in the case for other items, and the 22" carry-on gives you room of even more.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozonation View Post
    Will a Brompton fit in this?
    The interior dimensions are about 27.7" x 19.75" x 11.25". I would assume that if our 20" bike will fit, the 16" Brompton will fit as well.

  19. #19
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinigis View Post
    The interior dimensions are about 27.7" x 19.75" x 11.25". I would assume that if our 20" bike will fit, the 16" Brompton will fit as well.
    Maybe, maybe not. The Brompton, when folded, is rather squarish. I'll have to measure it out. The B&W case which many Brompton riders use is square. I think the rectangular dimensions of more typical travel luggage do not fit quite as easily, or at all.
    Rivendell Sam Hillborne and Hunqapillar; Brompton M6R Sage Green; Salsa Mukluk 3 FAT Bike; Nerdy Academic; Nikonian; Wing Chun; and a Patridge in a Pear Tree.

  20. #20
    LET'S ROLL 1nterceptor's Avatar
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    Brompton's folded dimension is a bit square at around 24" X 24" X 10.
    Most luggages/suitcases are rectangular and the B'ton won't fit even
    with the wheels off.

    42nd st., New York City by 1nterceptor, on Flickr

  21. #21
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1nterceptor View Post
    Brompton's folded dimension is a bit square at around 24" X 24" X 10.
    Most luggages/suitcases are rectangular and the B'ton won't fit even
    with the wheels off.

    42nd st., New York City by 1nterceptor, on Flickr
    I have never tried to pack a Brompton, but if its minimum is 24" x 24" it will not fit in a 20"-wide case.

  22. #22
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    How much does it weight the 30" suitcase?
    www.colmanlerner.zenfolio.com
    http://submit.shutterstock.com/?ref=60183
    “No Sueñes Tu Vida, Vive Tus Sueños“
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  23. #23
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gdlerner View Post
    How much does it weight the 30" suitcase?
    The 30" case is about 11 lbs. I will get a more accurate weight in couple of days.

  24. #24
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    I own a Samsonite F lite 79cm for my Bike Friday NWT,and cost in Germany only 95€ your case about 145€.I will love to have a new case but need to be much lighter then 11lbs
    www.colmanlerner.zenfolio.com
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  25. #25
    Decrepit Member Scooper's Avatar
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    Here's a photo of my Brompton M6L packed in the B&W case. I don't think there's any way either W or H could squeeze into 20"...

    - Stan

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