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  1. #1
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    going away, need to bring my bike

    i am going to italy for a year and would like to bring my bike with. i was wondering if anyone has any experience/advice about the best way to go about it. i have heard some stories about bad experiences and accidents that have occurred while trusting the airline with storing bikes with the rest of the luggage, so i am a little weary about doing that. unfortunately i don't have the money to buy a hard case so i will be using a box. i have poked around the internet and found a few things like the tuffbox on ebay and the aircaddy (aircaddy.com).
    so any advice?
    thanks a lot.
    <A HREF="http://www.tadkimball.tinymenagerie.com">tall_animals doing work</A>

  2. #2
    my bike Owns me+my wallet Kol.klink's Avatar
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    Like with getting any luggage transported by an airline, your running a risk. but i think a box will do just fine, just fill all the extra space with newspaper or styrofoam packing peanuts and hope nothing bad happens, i've never had problem with a train/airline/bus/courrier when shiping bikes/skis/snowboards. the airlines insured anyways? so if anything bad happens you'll at least won't to that far out of pocket

  3. #3
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    buy a box and shipit fed-ex to your desired location. make sure you package it securely and buy insurance and get a tracking, all that will be well worth it.

  4. #4
    jerk store mathletics's Avatar
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    I have to wonder if it wouldn't be easier to just get a new bike in Italy, compared to the cost of shipping it to yourself. If you go the airline route, great. I hope it works out for you.

  5. #5
    Run What 'Ya Brung bonechilling's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mathletics View Post
    I have to wonder if it wouldn't be easier to just get a new bike in Italy, compared to the cost of shipping it to yourself. If you go the airline route, great. I hope it works out for you.
    That's what I was going to suggest, too. Maybe not necessarily cheaper, but if you could score some old Italian masterpiece for a few hundred, it would seem to be worth it.

    We probably have misconceptions about Italy, because in my mind, every shop is run by some tiny old man with a wall full of $400 Colnagos.

  6. #6
    Invented the Skid Salute lamalex's Avatar
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    you could /probably/ get a ****ty bike for about the same price, but if you like your bike and want to ride it, the shipping both ways is probably going to total out to around $300. Much less than a new bike. Of course you run the risk of loss/damage so insurance/tracking is a must.

  7. #7
    jerk store mathletics's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bonechilling View Post
    That's what I was going to suggest, too. Maybe not necessarily cheaper, but if you could score some old Italian masterpiece for a few hundred, it would seem to be worth it.

    We probably have misconceptions about Italy, because in my mind, every shop is run by some tiny old man with a wall full of $400 Colnagos.
    My recollection of Italy is that it was very inexpensive. Granted I didn't do any shopping, so I'm basing my economic view on food prices alone. So basically if the price of Italian bicycles is in any way related to the price of pasta and pastries, a new bike will be affordable.

  8. #8
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    hi thanks for the help.
    as for getting a new bike, i have thought about this also. the town i am moving to is the town were the pinarello factory is and funnily enough, i have a vintage pinarello track frame, so that is partly why i want to bring my bike.
    bike stuff in italy is about the same price as it is in america, sometimes more expensive, because of the euro. i have heard that the pinarello factory has a thrift store type place where they sell cheap bikes and stuff, but i dont want to spend anymore money than i have too.
    <A HREF="http://www.tadkimball.tinymenagerie.com">tall_animals doing work</A>

  9. #9
    <3s bikes Re-Cycle's Avatar
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    If you are convinced that you have to have your current bike and don't plan on shipping a bike again any time soon then just go to your local trek dealer and ask them for the box a madone comes in. All their other bikes come in crappy boxes but madones are shipped in reusable boxes that are always cut up and thrown away. It has straps and foam that hold a bike perfectly. Problem solved.
    A wild man once explained to me how bicycles came from sailboats.

  10. #10
    Invented the Skid Salute lamalex's Avatar
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    request: bring a digital camera to the thrift store, take pictures of stuff we would want, post it here, and we'll paypal you money to ship it back to us.

  11. #11
    Run What 'Ya Brung bonechilling's Avatar
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    Seriously, a Pinarello thrift store? I would go broke in such a place.

  12. #12
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    I've taken a bike to another country.

    If you really care about your bike, don't pack your bike in a cardboard bike box and put it on an airplane. Why?

    1) Baggage handlers will toss it around.
    2) The airplane will toss it around or other bags/boxes will fall on it.
    3) Airplanes vibrate which will likely make something rub it's way out of the cardboard.
    4) Airlines aren't liable for damage to your bike. They'll be liable if the lose it, but not if it's "Improperly packed".


    Dude, you can find a proper bike box easily, especially if you live in or near a big city. Lots of people buy them and use them once or twice then they just sit in garages. Just post an ad on Craigslist stating "Wanted: Heavy Duty Bicycle Travel Case". Around $100 is a fair price to pay for a used one. Make sure you get skewers to keep your fork and rear triangle from getting bent closer together.

  13. #13
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    ...also, while working at a bike shop, we had a customer from across the country pack his bike in a cardboard bike box himself and ship it to us to build and have ready when he arrived. When we opened it metal shavings LITERALLY poured out of the box.

    It happens all the time. It even happened to me once. Not that bad, though. I shipped a BMX bike from SF to Alabama. When I opened the box everything was fine except the brake lever had poked through the cardboard and was now scraped to hell and a brake line that was touching the frame had worn through the paint down to the steel of the frame. That blem was about an inch long.

  14. #14
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    An airline baggage story on a guitar forum:

    http://www.talkbass.com/forum/showthread.php?t=357483

    Imagine if his guitar were in a cardboard box!

  15. #15
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    carleton give good advice. If you do end up going with a cardboard box you should foam-tube all of your tubes including your cranks. They sell it at home stores to insulate your pipes.

    Make sure you get a plastic fork block and use it. Reinforce the cardboard where the fork block rests on the ground. 99% of all damage we used to get in the shop were from the fork popping out of the box. The other small percentage was things piercing the side of the box. If you don't use a fork block you are guarenteed your fork will punch though the bottom of the box and damage will occure.

    I would personally remove the hub axle on the front wheel. That is something that has the biggest tendancy of scratching the frame since when it is boxed, it sits about 3" away from the seat tube.

    I would also completely remove your stem from your bar. Another place where caution saves paint scrapes. Store the stem, & axle, pedals in a small parts box that will sit under your down-tube where there is a lot of space. Tape or ziptie your bar to your top tube.

  16. #16
    fixed or bent acoldspoon's Avatar
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    I can totally see why you would want to celebrate a sort of homecoming with your bike by riding it in the town it was conceived. Seeing as how you'll be in Italy for a year, and don't need to ride your bike away from the arrival airport like a bicycle tourist would, I'd make the following suggestion. This should save you some dough and save your bike a fair share of wear and tear. First of all, take your bike apart. It will be easier to protect your frame and wheels if they aren't attached to anything. Box the frame, BB, and headset in one corrugated plastic carton or dedicated frame package with lots of padding. Box wheels in another like carton with lots of padding. Mark both of these items with large "FRAGILE" stickers or with a Sharpie. Pack the left over parts in bubble wrap and stash them in with you clothing. Make sure to get "PRIORITY" tags for all of your luggage. This helps to assure that your luggage will be packed in the plane near the baggage doors, will often be packed in last, and will come off the plane first.
    Remember the 9/11's

  17. #17
    Thighmaster
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    The EU has a 17.5% duty on bikes, or bike components manufactured in China, so prices on imported and locally manufactured stuff is not all that sharp.

    If you have a lot of time, local cyclist friends or native language skills, you should be able to track down the old man with a run down shop full of vintage campy and NOS Italian steel frames, but I wouldn't depend on that happening.

    A good LBS will box your bike for shipping, if you have any worries.

  18. #18
    LF for the accentdeprived
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kol.klink View Post
    won't to that far out of
    WOW
    Quote Originally Posted by dutret
    Do you deny that you are clueless or do you just think that "moron" didn't need to be tacked on there?
    Bike on flickr and on FGG

  19. #19
    o harro buttercup
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    Go to a local REI and see if you can purchase one of the boxes that our bikes come in from the DC. They're super heavy duty and would allow you to put more padding on the sides to protect your bici.

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