BIKE BAGS- TRAVEL CORRECTLY WITH YOUR BIKE
If you are embarking on a far away cycling adventure this year, and are planning on taking your bike with you, you will want to make sure it is packaged safely when you leave it to the mercy of the baggage handlers. Whether you have a specialist bike bag, or are packaging your prised possession into a good old cardboard box, this handy guide will provide you with some tips and tricks on how to pack correctly.
To travel with your bike on an airline, you will most probably be required to box or baggage your bike for travel. This means partially dismantling it into either a bike bag/case (the pricier option) or into a cardboard bike box (the less pricy option). If you intend on travelling a lot with your bike, it is highly recommended that you invest in a bike bag as the added protection and ease of handling far outrivals the cardboard equivalent. Decent bike bags range from £40 to £500 and offer varying degrees of outer and internal protection, however, the principles of dismantling and packing your bike will remain the same regardless of the box/bag you use.
Steve Richards – Kings Cross Manager
“Don’t forget to plan ahead and get some foam tubes to protect the frame, the kind you would you for insulating plumbing. They help stop the frame from getting minor scratches whilst being packed and are a cheap and easy solution. You can get these from hardware stores but if you butter us up with some biscuits we can always have a look and see if we have some spare in store.”
When dismantling your bike, it is important that you consider every point at which something could potentially get bent or cause further damage when impacted. This means that ultimately, you should look to pack your bike as flat as possible to prevent any misfortune.
The wheels should be removed and the skewers taken out. The skewers can be taped to the spokes of the wheels or carried separately. Be careful of grease on the skewers. It is a good idea to try and get your hands on some plastic inserts for the fork/rear triangle as this will add security when in transit.
Take off the rear derailleur, wrap it in bubble wrap and tighten the hanger bolt to make sure it is not lost in transport. The mech does not have to be taken off the chain – just given the extra protection that taking it off the main frame gives it.
Sam Bannister – Bike Buyer
“For extra peace of mind, remove your discs as they can get pushed out of alignment in transit.”
The easiest and most effective way of protecting your bars when putting your bike into a bike bag or box is to simply turn them sideways and turn them downwards and under the top tube to secure them in place. Another way to secure your bars in transit is to remove them completely from the stem and attach them to the frame of the bike. Extra care should be taken here for cables and brake hoses as theses can become bent and distorted if attention is not taken.
It is important to cover your cranks well with extra padding so there is no danger of damage whilst in transit. Make sure you turn the cranks parallel to the bottom of the box and allow for the chainrings to be well covered and padded so no scratching occurs when the bike is being transported.
Clifford Head – Allocator
“Make sure everything is packed securely and not moving. It may seem obvious but it really is an important and the less movement, the safer your bike will be”
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