Login required to started new threads

Login required to post replies

Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time
Quote | Reply
I will be flying from U.S. to Nice for the WC, and I will be bringing my bike. I was originally thinking I would use Tribike Transport, but that is $650. So, I will likely be borrowing a good case and flying with my bike. Any quick tips? I will be connecting through Charles De Gaulle, so I assume that I will have to get the bike in international baggage claim, get through customs, and then re-check for the connecting flight to Nice. That seems like an opportunity for things to go wrong, so all thoughts there welcome.

These are the major things I think I need to account for:
  • Tools to reassemble the bike
  • Mark seatpost position before disassembly to ensure correct position
  • Can't bring C02
  • Partially deflate tires (latex tubes) before flight
  • Leaving pump home and will hope to borrow a pump the morning of the race
  • Not sure if I will be renting a car yet, so I will need to find airport-to-lodging that can handle a bike in the case plus lots luggage
  • Preparing to pay Delta a lot to check the bike and bulky gear
  • Bring the basketfull of chargers to top off my bike and all its accessories before the race

Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [exxxviii] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Definitely go with a hard case and not one of the soft bike bags.

Plan for like 3x the amount of time you think things should reasonably take...
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [exxxviii] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
First thing first, you know TSA or something similar in France WILL open your case, so make sure everything is neatly packed in their own bags and/or fastened down so they will be put back to as closely as possible to how you originally packed. I second the recommendation of using a hard case - personally I have a Bike Box Alan and it's been great.
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [exxxviii] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
- Make a checklist of your absolute "can't-lose" items and use it while packing. Stuff you might not be able to buy in a bike shop - seatpost clamp, special headset items, valve extenders, your pedals/shoes, that sort of thing.
- Remove your rear derailleur before packing.
- Block off the chainstays.
- Bring a small pump just in case. I use a Topeak Road Morph G which is a frame pump but it'll easily get 90psi.
- Pack up a small toolkit with your essentials - wrenches (incl. pedal and torque wrench), tape, zip ties, etc.
- Rental cars in Europe are generally very small, so try to arrange in advance if you need an SUV.


Edit: and honestly, $650 for TriBike Transport is not a bad deal. You will probably spend $200 on the bike fees and another extra chunk of change if you get a larger rental vehicle. And then you need to find a storage unit for the bike unless you want to be dragging that bike box around on your entire trip.
Last edited by: spudone: May 24, 19 13:31
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [spudone] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Remove your rear derailleur, even in a hard case. This is for TSA. They will bend will bend the hangar and they won’t care.

Aaron Torrelio
--everything in moderation, including moderation
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [TravelingTri] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
TravelingTri wrote:
Remove your rear derailleur, even in a hard case. This is for TSA. They will bend will bend the hangar and they won’t care.

To add, always travel with an extra brand new derailleur hanger.

Also an extra cone washer or whatever that thingy is that goes in between your top bearing and the fork mast.

Always pack whatever extra stuff that is in your bike case in large clear ziplocks, just so everyone can see.

In addition to co2, don’t travel with pit stop or types of lube which are flammable (check for symbols)

Use cheap plumbers pipe to place on tubes, card board, or bubble wrap in between.

Maurice

http://www.multisportsolutions.com
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [exxxviii] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Agree with some of the other good suggestions. As it's a WC, I would think that there will be more than enough pumps, cylinders, etc. Use pipe insulation to wrap your bike, Take the rear Derailleur off (NOT the cable!), place it in a plastic bag and attach it to the rear stay on the inside of the frame where the wheel would go. Depending on which case you have, get the spacers that go in the front fork and the rear when the wheels come off; something like this...https://www.amazon.com/...=8-1-spons&psc=1 or the spacer the bike shop through out with the box. Most shops will give you one. Some people post photos of the packed bike on the lid of the case for TSA to follow if they will. Act like you've done it before, and many times they will let you stay while they inspect so you can coach the repacking. As it's for WC, they will have seen a LOT of bikes, so it will not be new to them. If you can get there at check in well in advance you can get them between rushes which helps. I'm sure a search will find contact info for bike mechanics, who will be there en masse and if you have contact info first, you will not have to sweat that if you have a need.
Don't sweat the process as there will be lots available should you have a need, but being in a hurry will not help you. Say calm, and enjoy some awesome French wine and food and let others do your work. Nice is truly awesome and I'm envious of your trip. Soak it in.....
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [ggeiger] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Yep, remove the rear derailleur, also put spacers between the fork dropouts and the rear wheel dropouts, LBS will probably give you some free as they come with new bikes shipped to them




Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [exxxviii] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Mainly repeating above, but some tweaks.

1) Check, but last time I flew (NZ to UK via LAX) then I was allowed CO2 - I think there's a size/number limit. but was fine with my two. I put them in the top zip of the bag.
2) Rear derailler off, in a thick ziplock sandwich bag, then taped to the inside of the chainstay - as mentioned don't unbolt the cable and so it's back on in a jiffy.
3) Frame spacers for the forks (or old hubs).
4) pedals off - general advice is to put them back on on the inside so you don't forget them. I prefer the alternate which is to do the teardown in a really tidy / empty location (ie not the bike garage) and then you know to pack everything. Same for tools - everything you need to do the teardown you need for the rebuild.
5) wetsuit makes great padding - clearly be careful of sharp things, but use things like wetsuits, hoodies, fleeces, etc to add protection
5) Shoes and helmet (in case) into the rear triangle
6) Foam roller - this fits in my soft case and goes at the bottom of the bag, then the BB sits on this and the BB/chainrings are protected from the bottom of the bag. Weighs very little and and it's good to have with you.
7) Practice - do the pack, then do the unpack a few weeks before. So then you have the chance to see what did/didn't work before your stress levels go off the scale. IE when you find out the pedals weren't lubed when first built and are now seized.
8) Seatpost - tape around the insertion point. So then when you put it back in then you just insert to the tape. No need to measure.
9) Wheels in padded bags, one either side with the hubs positioned to be in the frame gap - make sure you don't forget the skewers if you've not used for the frame spacers!
10) Lots of insulating tape and towels/rags to add protection. I really make sure I'm up to the 23kg limit for the bag by adding in loads of clothes (in bags) to add padding/protection all the way around.
11) Key one - look at the cost of flying with bikes before you book your flight. For example AirNZ are great for sporting gear. Counts as normal bag up to weight limit in your 2 bag allowance. Other airlines may have been a few hundred $ cheaper on the ticket, but $500 more each way on the bike.
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [exxxviii] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Get a wheel bag if able and use them as your one of two carry ons or two of two carrying ons. When they open your bike box and try to repack it, the more room in your box to not squish everything will prevent security from breaking bike parts. Possibly pack all excessories in a separate luggage bag. Good luck!
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [exxxviii] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
I'd confirm that your total flying with a bike costs don't get too close to that $650 number. Some airlines can really rack the fees up quickly (I've only flown with my bike on Aer Lingus - free and JetBlue - $50 surcharge each way when I did) so you might not be that far off, especially accounting for ground transportation (most of my bike travel has been with a group and a rented can).

Traveling to Spain via Dublin our bikes have been checked through. If you think you are going to need to get them back and recheck, you may get hit with bike fees for each leg (so 4 in total).

Bring the things you don't get from a rental shop in your carry-on (pedals, helmet, shoes, race suit, etc.). There can be delays/damage and if you have those you can possibly rent a bike and still ride.

Torque wrench if you have anything particularly sensitive.
Quote Reply
Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Thanks a ton, everyone. There are many things I had not considered, like the frame spacers, packing a smaller frame pump instead, protecting tubes pipe insulation or pool noodles, removing the RD, headset parts (I may travel with a new headset in case I lose parts there), confirming the total costs before deciding, etc. I will definitely be making myself a detailed checklist and doing a trial packing test.
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [Duncan74] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
CO2 is not allowed.
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [exxxviii] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
You will probably need adaptors for all those chargers. France is, I think, 50cycles and we are 60. Look into this before yo leave.

I use a lot of foam pipe insulation when I pack my bike. I've been doing it for 20 years and I've never had a problem. Like everyone else said; remove your RD and tape it to the chainstay.

Keep your bike case to under 50 lbs

Bring a pump, you don't know if you'll be able to borrow.

Don't lock you case

Enjoy the race and the rest of your trip.

Congratulations!

---------------------------
''Sweeney - you can both crush your AG *and* cruise in dead last!! 😂 '' Murphy's Law
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [dalava] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
@DALAVA - You talk in your post above about TSA or somebody “inevitably” opening the box in France - I have been travelling for years with bikes in and out of French airports (including Nice last year) and many other European ones - I never once had anybody open the bike box.
Last edited by: chgrubb: May 25, 19 10:54
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [chgrubb] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
I just flew across US with United. My cardboard box was open up twice. 1st by a someone at the United oversized counter. I had assumed that was the end of it. He taped it up. Then it was opened up again by TSA to swipe with their tissue. They taped it up again. Why it couldn't have just been opened one time is beyond me. They also did a nice job of ripping the cardboard off rather than lifting it off as intended
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [BarbBikeTechie] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
All on the US side though I assume. The Europeans will pay it no attention. European security simply does not involve opening bike boxes, or suitcases for that matter.
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [jimatbeyond] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
jimatbeyond wrote:
CO2 is not allowed.

Can you just expand a little on this blanket statement that used to be the case but now isn't. I'll accept that there may be situation where it is still the case, but it isn't everywhere, including as I said via the us.

Noting there is a 16g CO2 canister under every seat on the plane.....
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [Duncan74] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
https://www.tsa.gov/...ng/whatcanibring/all


TSA specifically prohibits "small compressed gas cartridges" in carry-on and checked bags.

However, if you have an inflatable life vest, you can have up to two CO2 cartridges with it.
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [jimatbeyond] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
Interesting, so that does vary by location. And has changed in last year (as I checked with TSA last May).

https://www.virginaustralia.com/...age/dangerous-goods/

"Other devices (e.g. bike pump):
  • Must not be fitted with more than four small cartridges;
  • The cartridge must not exceed 28g (the equivalent water capacity of 50ml)."

Anyway, possibly drifting OT.
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [exxxviii] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
In my experience, it's worth bringing a pump. Yes you can borrow a pump at the race, but trying to get the bike out of your hotel with partially/mostly flat tires sucks. I brought a full-size floor pump strapped to the bottom of my bike bag under the bike. It was totally worth it.

http://must-be-half-crazy.blogspot.ca/
Supported by: Britannia Chiropractic Clinic | Legacy Team Nuun 2019
Quote Reply
Re: Tips? Flying with my bike for the first time [mauricemaher] [ In reply to ]
Quote | Reply
mauricemaher wrote:
To add, always travel with an extra brand new derailleur hanger.

+1 on that. I started just removing the entire hangar with derailleur attached.

I've also started bringing extra spokes after finding one broken upon arrival (granted, this is a Ritchey in a soft case).
Quote Reply