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a.k.a. BicycleKicks
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I'm heading to Vancouver tomorrow for busyness and will have the opportunity to ride a couple of times, so I figured it was definitely worth the trouble to bring the bike.

Here's how I'm doing it using the Performance Team bike case.

After several tries to find the best fit, here's how I'm going to do it... handlebar removed, fork spun 180, wheels top and bottom...
Bicycle wheel rim Bicycle part Bicycle tire Bicycle accessory Rim


Next, prep the frame. Remove the pedals, chain, rear der, brake calipers, and drop the saddle. Wrap or pad areas where you think you'll have contact. Secure the loose parts so they don't flop around. Secure the chainring pad under the cranks. I used bubble wrap and lots of tape, I'm going to try some closed cell foam like that swimming pool noodle material and less tape next time... folded cardboard might be good too...
Bicycle frame Bicycle Bicycle saddle Bicycle accessory Metal


Prep the wheels. Remove rotors and pad the hubs and cassette. I used thick paper cereal bowls trimmed to fit. Removing the rotors is a pain, but do you really want to get to your location with a bent rotor? Also, padding the hubs is optional. If you pad the frame good enough where they might touch (on the rear shock in my case) then you can probably avoid this step.
Bicycle tire Wheel Tire Bicycle wheel rim Spoke


Secure the front caliper...
Floor Bicycle part Bicycle accessory Auto part Hardwood


Secure the rear caliper and rear der...
Product Textile Floor Black Plastic
 

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a.k.a. BicycleKicks
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
continued...

Secure the handlebar under the saddle and to the stem or steerer tube... Next time I might leave the stem on the steerer and just remove the bar from the stem... either way will work, but the way I did it allows the fork to drop a little...
Bicycle accessory Bicycle handlebar Bicycle part Bicycle Carbon

Bicycle part Bicycle accessory Bicycle Bicycle handlebar Bicycle frame


Pad the crankset with the block provided... I spun the crank arms to the position they're in on purpose... coming up you'll see how the wheels fit with them just right...
Crankset Bicycle drivetrain part Auto part Machine Gear


Make sure any contact points are padded very well... the stem here might touch the frame... and coming up you'll see how the hubs might touch the shock...
Bicycle accessory Bicycle part Silver Bicycle handlebar Bicycle


Put the rear wheel under the frame... It is tucked nicely between the fork and the crankarm... the cassette is DOWN...
Bicycle accessory Automotive engine part Engine Bicycle


continued...
 

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a.k.a. BicycleKicks
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1,138 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
continued..

See how the tire is sitting between my fender and the fork... nice fit...
Bicycle tire Bicycle wheel rim Bicycle accessory Bicycle part Spoke


Now the front wheel goes on top in the exact same position... between the fork and crankarm...
Bicycle tire Bicycle wheel rim Bicycle part Automotive tire Bicycle accessory

Wheel Bicycle tire Bicycle wheel rim Automotive tire Spoke

Automotive tire Bicycle tire Rim Bicycle wheel rim Synthetic rubber


Then I took a 12' nylon strap with a cam buckle and squeezed the wheels together passing the strap through the spokes and frame... It's squeezing pretty good, but not nearly hard enough to stress the wheels or anything like that... just a good firm hold so nothing slips... this allows the entire bike to be picked up out of the case...
Bicycle wheel rim Bicycle part Rim Spoke Automotive tire
 

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a.k.a. BicycleKicks
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
continued...

with so much extra strap, I wrapped it around the wheels and frame some more... the wheels don't budge...
Bicycle tire Bicycle wheel rim Automotive tire Bicycle accessory Bicycle part

Bicycle tire Automotive tire Bicycle part Bicycle Bicycle drivetrain part


Notice how the tires hold the fork in position so it can't turn...
Beige Khaki Walking shoe Strap


The tires rest against the rear triangle... the pressure is down to about 10psi so they're nice and soft...
Sandal Shotgun Synthetic rubber Leather Silver


The entire thing is like a package that can be carried around by the tip of the saddle... again, notice the details of how the tires interface with the fork and crankarms....
Bicycle wheel rim Automotive tire Spoke Rim Bicycle tire


continued...
 

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a.k.a. BicycleKicks
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
continued...

other side...
Bicycle tire Wheel Bicycle wheel rim Spoke Bicycle part


rear view...
Bicycle tire Wood Bicycle part Flooring Bicycle accessory


front view...
Product Brown Textile Floor Flooring


Standing in the box...
Fender Spoke Rim Classic Machine


cardboard on the head tube prevents any rubbing on the box...
Bicycle tire Bicycle wheel rim Automotive tire Wood Bicycle part


continued...
 

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a.k.a. BicycleKicks
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
continued...

Look how nicely it fits... wouldn't go in without removing both brake calipers... if you have a smaller frame you might not have to do that...
Bicycle wheel rim Rim Bicycle accessory Spoke Bicycle part


I added a little cardboard to the dropouts...
Hardwood Wood stain Metal Steel Wood flooring


placed the support post provided with the box just in case something really heavy gets put on top...
Synthetic rubber Auto part Carbon Metal Spoke


Closes EASILY! Didn't even need to press on it...
Hardwood Fruit Wood stain Baggage Strawberry


and almost best of all... under 50 pounds! (the airline overweight baggage magic number)...
Audio equipment Mesh Automotive exterior Technology Black


NOTE: the parts I removed will go in my suitcase and will likely push it close to 50lbs, but still will be under.

Now I need to figure out how to avoid the oversize baggage fee... I have lots of ideas on this... I'll report back how things turn out.
 

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a.k.a. BicycleKicks
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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
My box is better than your box

ArmySlowRdr said:
wow after seeing that I'm really glad I just use a crateworks box.
I'm glad you're glad. My box has 4 built in wheels and doesn't look like cardboard :thumbsup: . My box cost less than your box (disclaimer here: Performance sale + team points discount = $150) :prft:

Not arguin', just sayin' :D

I did look at those crateworks, but wanted something more like a suitcase with handles, wheels, etc. This is the smallest box I could find that met my criteria... and as we all know, size matters.
 

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govt kontrakt projkt mgr
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to each his or her own.

my crateworks box didnt cost even 150$ but it has been 6 years or more back. it has withstood numerous flights and I dont go through near the steps you do in packing. And I manage to slip my shoes and helmet and camelbak and a light set in there too.

but i dont worry about paying the extra 60 or 80 bucks the airlines charge. i think once or twice they didnt charge me.

thanks for posting those pictures though--they'll be of much use to those with similar cases.
 

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a.k.a. BicycleKicks
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'm hoping to reduce the labor

ArmySlowRdr said:
to each his or her own.

my crateworks box didnt cost even 150$ but it has been 6 years or more back. it has withstood numerous flights and I dont go through near the steps you do in packing. And I manage to slip my shoes and helmet and camelbak and a light set in there too.

but i dont worry about paying the extra 60 or 80 bucks the airlines charge. i think once or twice they didnt charge me.

thanks for posting those pictures though--they'll be of much use to those with similar cases.
Agreed, there are a lot of steps in my process. I will try and reduce them after seeing how this first trip goes. I always do things very conservatively on the first try to avoid screw ups. I would hate to get there and have broken pieces or scratches all over my 6 week old frame. Know what I mean?

For starters I'll prolly leave the chain and derailleur on next time. I will also probably leave the stem on the steerer tube. I will try and use cardboard or foam pieces held in place by reusable velcro straps instead of all that bubble wrap and tape. And finally I can probably do without covering the hubs and cassette. Even though it's a lot of steps, everything is a simple allen/torx wrench away from being installed. I should be able to get it back together in 15-20 minutes and not need to do any tuning at all... not bad... as long as I don't get tangled in all the tape while removing it :incazzato:
 

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a.k.a. BicycleKicks
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1,138 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Did it with fewer steps on the return trip

40hills said:
Agreed, there are a lot of steps in my process. I will try and reduce them after seeing how this first trip goes. I always do things very conservatively on the first try to avoid screw ups. I would hate to get there and have broken pieces or scratches all over my 6 week old frame. Know what I mean?

For starters I'll prolly leave the chain and derailleur on next time. I will also probably leave the stem on the steerer tube. I will try and use cardboard or foam pieces held in place by reusable velcro straps instead of all that bubble wrap and tape. And finally I can probably do without covering the hubs and cassette. Even though it's a lot of steps, everything is a simple allen/torx wrench away from being installed. I should be able to get it back together in 15-20 minutes and not need to do any tuning at all... not bad... as long as I don't get tangled in all the tape while removing it :incazzato:
Ok, my packaging worked great, but was admittedly a bit of overkill. It took me exactly 30 minutes to get the bike back together and ready to go... not bad, but still a bit much. Not a scratch or dent though.

Here's what I did differently on the return trip...
- did NOT remove the brake rotors from the wheels (saved a bunch of time)
- placed the wheels with the rotors OUT towards the foam padding of the box.
- did NOT remove the chain.
- did NOT remove my Rockshox remote poplock cable from the fork (turned the bar the other way to avoid having to do this).
- did NOT go crazy with padding and tape... I only padded the rear shock area where the hubs and cassette rested against it (see pics)... I didn't put padding on the hubs at all. This saved all kinds of tape tangles.
- I removed the bar from the stem, rather than the stem from the steerer... this was easier and faster to reinstall without having to mess with a loose fork and front wheel alignment.
- didn't have to pad or secure the handlebar because the stem was not on it and the grips took care of the ends... it rested nicely in between the tires/saddle/headtube area in the box.
- didn't go crazy with my nylon strap... one pass around the entire frame in 2 directions was enough.

Those small changes combined to reduce the rebuild time by about half... took me only 15 minutes or so to reinstall the calipers, bar, rear der, skewers, and pedals... that's it. Not bad. Definitely worth the effort to use such a fine wheeled box.

Now, regarding the airline baggage fee... I got shafted. The first agent didn't even wait for me to speak, as soon as I walked up she was like "that box is oversized". There was no talking my way out of it... she asked what it was and I said "components"... didn't matter to her really, she was proud of spotting the oversized bag in the crowd.

The agent on the return trip was almost as bad, but at least much friendlier... I hadn't even said anything yet and she's like "is that a bike?" as I walked up to the counter feeling pwned :mad: ... at least she told me she thought the box was a very nice one. I also politely told her I had already been charged on the outbound trip and could she cut me a break etc etc... didn't work... I had to pay up.

Next time I might try the curbside baggage check with the $10 bill between my knuckles as I hand the box to the baggage dude. With my luck I'll be out the baggage fee + $10.

Oh, one final thought... and I wish I had done this... neither agent actually measured the box. If this happens again, I will politely demand that they measure it before I drop coin on their fee... there's a very remote chance that they won't have a tape measure, will make a mistake measuring, get distracted, get in a hurry, etc etc, that could get me out of the fee... you never know.

Incidentally, I called United and complained that their fees were incorrect... I was charged more than the bike fee shown on their web site (which is true, but I didn't know it at the time)... so they're sending me a $50 voucher good for future flights :thumbsup: Make sure you know their rules, try to take advantage of them if you can, and push back for refunds etc if possible.
 

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Chillin the Most
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Pretty sweet, but I hate taking my bike all apart unless its for maintence reasons. When I travel the bikes stay whole. This however is the "ultimate" how to crate a crate a bike. This is how my DH bike was shipped from Cali to Ohio when I moved a few years back. I've since moved back to Cali, Ohio s*cks!
 
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