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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I need to order a hard-case for traveling with my bike. The two best options I've found online are this Thule from Jenson:
http://www.jensonusa.com/store/product/BC409A02-Thule+699+Round+Trip+Bike+Travel+Case.aspx

And this Pro Bike Case from Performance or Nashbar:
http://www.performancebike.com/shop/Profile.cfm?SKU=23199&item=20-4549&slitrk=search&slisearch=true

The Pro Case looks to be superior, especially with its internal mounting system. It's more expensive, but I'd rather be safe than sorry with my bike. Does anyone have any experience with either of these cases, or another model that I should be looking at? I am planning on shipping the bike in it insured via UPS/Fedex, but there may be an occasional trip where I need to take my chances with the airlines. It will be used to ship a size "large" FS trailbike.

Thanks in advance.
Chris
 

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I don't have the Pro case from Performance, but I own and have used the Cargo case multiple times in the past two years. I've shipped everything from my carbon framed road bike to my downhill bike in this case, across the US and back. All I usually do it break down the bike as much as possible, have to take the fork off on my dh bike, wrap it with soft towels and put the individual parts in after they have been wrapped in soft towels as well. The Cargo case has straps to secure everything with and two big foam pads that go on each side of the bike.

In regards to shipping, I always ship my the entire case via Fed Ex. It usually weighs anywhere from 40 to 60 lbs and if you ship ground it's usually pretty inexpensive. I've shipped my road bike via 3 day air once and it was only about $100 round trip. I just call them to schedule pick up at my house or wherever I am, so I don't have to hassle with dragging the entire case into the Fed Ex store in town. Also heavily suggest insuring the bike for the maximum amount they allow, or pay for extra insurance as they allow.......nothing worse then a shipper losing the package and only giving you the max $$ for that package size (usually $100 to $500 at best in my experience).

Oh, last bit of advice I have, despite the urge and what other will tell you I suggest that you don't put a lock on the case. I did once and UPS had to cut it off and broke the clasp lock on the case to verify the contents at one of their routing stations due to increased security/terrorism. I've now just started using zip ties, that way it'll stay shut as needed and they only need to cut the zip tie to inspect.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hulkamaniac said:
I don't have the Pro case from Performance, but I own and have used the Cargo case multiple times in the past two years. I've shipped everything from my carbon framed road bike to my downhill bike in this case, across the US and back. All I usually do it break down the bike as much as possible, have to take the fork off on my dh bike, wrap it with soft towels and put the individual parts in after they have been wrapped in soft towels as well. The Cargo case has straps to secure everything with and two big foam pads that go on each side of the bike.

In regards to shipping, I always ship my the entire case via Fed Ex. It usually weighs anywhere from 40 to 60 lbs and if you ship ground it's usually pretty inexpensive. I've shipped my road bike via 3 day air once and it was only about $100 round trip. I just call them to schedule pick up at my house or wherever I am, so I don't have to hassle with dragging the entire case into the Fed Ex store in town. Also heavily suggest insuring the bike for the maximum amount they allow, or pay for extra insurance as they allow.......nothing worse then a shipper losing the package and only giving you the max $$ for that package size (usually $100 to $500 at best in my experience).

Oh, last bit of advice I have, despite the urge and what other will tell you I suggest that you don't put a lock on the case. I did once and UPS had to cut it off and broke the clasp lock on the case to verify the contents at one of their routing stations due to increased security/terrorism. I've now just started using zip ties, that way it'll stay shut as needed and they only need to cut the zip tie to inspect.
Are you refering to the Performace Brand "Cargo Case"? It's quite a bit cheaper, which is nice. The Pro Case might be overkill. Has it been your experience that FedEx or Ups will insure for more than $500? Any chance they'll insure up to $3,000?

The tricosports case also looks nice. Wish I could see them first hand.

Thanks again.

Chris
 

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igere said:
Are you refering to the Performace Brand "Cargo Case"? It's quite a bit cheaper, which is nice. The Pro Case might be overkill. Has it been your experience that FedEx or Ups will insure for more than $500? Any chance they'll insure up to $3,000?

The tricosports case also looks nice. Wish I could see them first hand.

Thanks again.

Chris
Yep, it's the Performance branded "cargo case". It's every bit as stout as the trico I rented for the trip I took just before buying this case. It's also just as easy to pack up neatly and securely as anything else I've used to date.

Fed Ex has no problem insuring the package & contents for beyond their limit, you just have to pay extra for it. It's a nominal fee, but it's well worth it in my opinion. UPS somehow lost my dh bike a few years ago and offered me up what was their maximum amount at the time, only to find it when I told them I would be making a claim for the full retail amount of the bike and parts. I got it nearly four weeks after getting home from the trip and the cardboard bike box I had put it in looked like it was used for batting practice by a disgruntled employee.
 

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I have the Thule case and it has worked great. Only down fall that I see, and it is probably similar with all cases, is that with an XL mountain bike with a longer travel fork, I have to remove the fork. This only takes a moment and the handlebars with the stem attached is easier to remove than the 4 bolt thomson face plate for handlebars only.

One note on shipping bikes, FedEx is almost always more affordable and better insured for bikes than UPS. I have a friend that is a regional manager at UPS and I asked him how come it was twice as expensive for UPS to ship a bike as FedEx and he stated that they do not like to ship bikes because of the liability associated with such an expensive breakable item. FedEx has always treated my bikes well and have been great to ship with.

Good Luck
 

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Prez NMBA
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I have the Thule round tripper as well. The reason I went with that over the standard performance case or others like it is the straps. Ive used the others and the turnbuckle type clasps tend to come apart/ slip apart even if you have them zip tied. The only issue i have is the same as ColoRider1, I have an XL blur and it just barely does not fit so I have to take the fork off, but I think anything smaller will fit no problem with the fork on. The other like the thule is the trico Ironman, check that one out too. In addition to the straps there are also spots to zip tie the thule halves together as well, which I do. This is the first time ive seen the other case, looks pretty heavy duty. I would check the weight on it vs the other since you are paying to ship the case as well as the bike.
 

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Hulkamaniac said:
Oh, last bit of advice I have, despite the urge and what other will tell you I suggest that you don't put a lock on the case. I did once and UPS had to cut it off and broke the clasp lock on the case to verify the contents at one of their routing stations due to increased security/terrorism. I've now just started using zip ties, that way it'll stay shut as needed and they only need to cut the zip tie to inspect.
Zip ties sound like a good idea. They will inpsect your case so make it easy for them to open. I had a bad experence last time I flew, they jammed my rear wheel back in the case and the cassette wedged itself between my seat and chainstays. It took a lot of force to pry it out and it severly gouged my frame. :madman: :madmax: :madmax: :madmax:
 

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We have two of the Trico Iron Cases and they are truly excellent. We take our bikes on trips 2-3 times per year, and packing is quite easy. On my large Turner 6-Pack I do have to remove the fork. On my GF's small 6-Pack I can leave the fork on. I don't think any other case would be different because there are dimentional restrictions with FedEx and UPS. I really like the overlapping clam-shell design because closing the case is easy and you can slowly compress the two halves into each other rather than needing edges to line up perfectly like with that performance case. The straps are secure and durable and something TSA seems to be able to put back together :p. The wheels are burly and the case rolls very well. It has feet to stand either upright or on it's side, and there are molded-in places to grab the case for lifting. After many trips the things have barely a scratch on them. I would not hesitate to get one again.
 

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Khemical said:
Zip ties sound like a good idea. They will inpsect your case so make it easy for them to open. I had a bad experence last time I flew, they jammed my rear wheel back in the case and the cassette wedged itself between my seat and chainstays. It took a lot of force to pry it out and it severly gouged my frame. :madman: :madmax: :madmax: :madmax:
Yep, I checked my bike as luggage one time on a flight to Wisconsin......one time, will never do that again. The inspectors opened the Trico case I was using to have a look, unwrapped the entire bike from it's cacoon of towels and bubble wrap, moved everything around, then threw it all back in however they felt it would fit.......no rhyme or reason to packing it back up, just literally thrown in there. They left the straps way loose cause the case would barely close due to them throwing it all back together in the case.

This is why I like my performance cargo case and using Fed Ex exclusively. They've inspected the case/bike twice now, each time opening it and looking. I'm not sure if they removed anything or moved it around at all, cause it always showed up looking exactly as how I packed it prior to shipping! The zip ties keep things together while being easy enough for them to deal with and immediately let you know if your case was opened for inspection.
 

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Loose Nut Behind d' Wheel
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igere said:
I need to order a hard-case for traveling with my bike. The two best options I've found online are this Thule from Jenson:
http://www.jensonusa.com/store/product/BC409A02-Thule+699+Round+Trip+Bike+Travel+Case.aspx

And this Pro Bike Case from Performance or Nashbar:
http://www.performancebike.com/shop/Profile.cfm?SKU=23199&item=20-4549&slitrk=search&slisearch=true

The Pro Case looks to be superior, especially with its internal mounting system. It's more expensive, but I'd rather be safe than sorry with my bike. Does anyone have any experience with either of these cases, or another model that I should be looking at? I am planning on shipping the bike in it insured via UPS/Fedex, but there may be an occasional trip where I need to take my chances with the airlines. It will be used to ship a size "large" FS trailbike.

Thanks in advance.
Chris
That Pro Case from Performance looks fantastic...except for the weight. 40lbs, before you put a bike in it - yeow! It'll be expensive to ship, and you might pay through the nose to take it on a plane. For comparison, the Trico and most of the knockoffs are around 25 lbs +/-.

I have rented a Trico many times and never had an issue with the bike being damaged. The only caution is that it doesn't have anything to keep it from being compressed, so take off your rear der. hangar and put some sort of spreader bar in the rear dropouts. It might even come with spreader bars - I don't remember. The Thule looks like a Trico copy, and is probably fine, too.

Kathy
 

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I also have been looking for a traveling case, and I will be traveling internationally, not just domestically. Does anyone recommend one case above another for this reason? Also, could anyone who has taken a bike with them internationally give me any advice on doing so, i.e., insurance (to the max no doubt), airline, how to prepare (just those zip-ties?)? Potentially, I will be traveling from the States to Europe. Thanks in advance.
 

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Prez NMBA
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If you are taking it on the plane with you, pack it very carefully, by that I mean do it so the TSA guys can repack it if/when they open it to inspect it. if you have disk wheels (mt bike), I would take the rotors off so they dont get bent if the TSA guys do a poor job of repacking, that happend on a domestic flight to a friend. Also dont count on the zip ties hoding things together as TSA very well may cut them off. you might try leaving a few in a bag inside with a note to use them if they do open and inspect the box but I wouldnt count on it happening. for that reason I would go with the Trico Ironman or the Thule round triper, that has straps as I totally dont trust the clasps on the "lower end" kind.
 

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nmba guy said:
If you are taking it on the plane with you, pack it very carefully, by that I mean do it so the TSA guys can repack it if/when they open it to inspect it. if you have disk wheels (mt bike), I would take the rotors off so they dont get bent if the TSA guys do a poor job of repacking, that happend on a domestic flight to a friend. Also dont count on the zip ties hoding things together as TSA very well may cut them off. you might try leaving a few in a bag inside with a note to use them if they do open and inspect the box but I wouldnt count on it happening. for that reason I would go with the Trico Ironman or the Thule round triper, that has straps as I totally dont trust the clasps on the "lower end" kind.
I also put foam pipe insulation on most everything, especially fork stanchions and any carbon parts where small scratches can be a problem. Any two pieces that touch each other will rub - you get a lot of high frequency vibration on a plane. Check nuts and bolts when you arrive - they have a habit of shaking loose. I had all 5 chainring bolts back out the first time I traveled with a bike on a plane. The less extra stuff you put in the case, like helmets, gloves or whatever, the less stuff the inspectors have to put back in "just right" to make things fit safely. You could put TSA approved locks on any metal hasp-type latches. Get them at a luggage store. They should put those back on if they have to take them off, whereas they may not see or ignore zipties.

Have fun!
Kathy
 

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Trico is a user friendly company. I called direct a couple of years ago when 8 of us needed cases for an up coming trip. They GLADLY discounted (I won't say... YOU CALL THEM) for us the cost of the cases and shipped directly to my house! Excellent cust service! I have used my TRICO to pack my bike for 6 trips so far, NO problems! The last trip I enclosed a TSA paper inside the case. I did that so the "smart guys" in the inspection area would think "oh, already looked at" and close it right away. I could tell they didn't move ANYTHING (maybe I outsmarted the "smart guys"at the airport.....

.......could that be possible???
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Just noticed this morning that Nashbar is now carrying the 'Pro' case also, and they have it for $379, making it a bit more affordable. I still haven't pulled the trigger on one, as my trip dates changed, but I am still planning one in the near future.
 
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