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Old 01-20-12, 02:34 PM   #1
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Bike Friday in a soft bag for travel?

bike Friday users. Have you ever tried traveling by air line using a soft bag? If so which one have you used and did you do any type of padding. Looking for alternatives to the hard case which although protective is very bulky and somewhat unwieldy.
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Old 01-20-12, 08:21 PM   #2
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Several years ago I put my wife's Medium sized Crusoe with "H" bars into a standard Dahon folder bag. In my opinion, anytime you fold a Friday you need to use two bungees to keep the handlebars and wheels in place. I have never tried a hard case.

When we travel with our SUV pulling our small trailer, I mount the folded bike on a plywood board. Different, I know, but it works good.

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Old 01-20-12, 08:49 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by jscalia View Post
bike Friday users. Have you ever tried traveling by air line using a soft bag?
I've used the Bike Friday soft bag when traveling by Greyhound bus without any extra padding. But with the bus I'm standing right by the driver when the bag is loaded. Have only used the hard suitcase for airline travel.
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Old 01-21-12, 08:43 AM   #4
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@JS - biggest problem with hard case is that you have something with you after arriving that you cant really take with you on the bike, unless you'd like to pull it as a trailer.

Somenoe recently posted some nice ideas for a quasi hardcase using plastic panels but flexible corners, so it could be folder after unboxing.

Problem with a non-hard case of course is how the airline will treat it. It seems more and more that the baggage handlers feel they have the right to throw anything, and that suitcases are defined as something that can survive a 3m drop test and be compressed under 5 others. There is no attention to just pushing something onto its side or dropping it, sure these cases fall into the fine handwritten rules of the baggage damage waivers, but it seems more and more this to be done without any shame in taking the extra 1/2 second to place it well.

So... ready to risk that $1000+ bike, with no recourse for damage when those little rear triangle nubs are bent off kilter?
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Old 01-22-12, 09:40 AM   #5
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My $0.02:

- put the soft bagged BF inside a cardboard box [you can customize a larger box to the necessary size - if you go early you can get something at the airport just bring your own tape]
- pack with some extra paddling inside the box
- use the box for your flight and recycle at the airport
- use the soft bag for the train/taxi/bus part or your trip when you need less protection, but more ease of use
safe riding - Vik
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Old 01-27-12, 05:32 AM   #6
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I've used the Bike Friday bag for my Pocket Rocket on a couple of trips. It's flown in the bag, and got a slightly bent chainring in the process. My most recent trip involved a lot of bus and train rides with it in the bag. Although it's handy to be able to roll up the bag and throw it in a pannier, it's far from ideal when you've got to carry the whole thing any distance in the bag. The tabs on the rear triangle do their best to tear a hole, as does the large chainring and fork tabs. If you don't secure everything together, it all bangs together when being moved, it will not stand up or lean against a wall nicely, and you can pretty easily whack other people's kneecaps in crowded areas. The stem especially takes a beating if not wrapped or secured. I was wishing I had a Brompton or Tikit for that trip.

You can also cut a protective taco out of a regular bike box to line the bag with. This gives a little more protection and helps with the holepoking. I usually leave the padding and packing bags in the suitcase, but would definitely recommend bringing the stem bag and a few other small pieces to take better care of things.
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Old 01-27-12, 08:55 PM   #7
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I used the soft bag just for buses ,but I also put some cardbox inside to make it stronger
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