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How to equip your bike for shipping

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Planning for vacation with friends and also want to carry your bike along with you for fun rides? Or, shifting to a new place for home relocation? Although, a bike is the simplest vehicle from all the others, yet its delicacy demands it to be packed very carefully.

Packing your bike for shipping is really a tricky task. Whenever you need to ship your bike, you must take some mandatory precautions if you want to keep your bike damage-free throughout the transit. It is better to disassemble, pack and ship your bike by yourself as it helps you to be confident that you have packed the bike by taking proper safety measures such as you have wrapped the bime with bubble wraps or padded it’s surfaces etc.

Therefore, in this article we will try to enlighten the readers about the predicaments that should be followed while packing bikes and make them prepared for shipping either a short distance or long.

Packing Box variations and useful tips

There are priorly two types of bike cases; hard and soft.

Soft cases are always preferred as they are lower in cost than hard ones. Scicon Aerocomfort 3.0 is one the most popular bike packing trolley cases. Hard shell bike cases are more protective than soft bags and so the prices are higher as per protection quality. Scicon Aerotech Evolution 3.0 is such a hard shell bike case. Try to choose a compact bike case if you are traveling by plane, otherwise you have to pay extra charges for oversized bike bags.

On the other hand, if you just want to move your bike to a new location only once, it would be better to pack your bike in a cardboard box. As no one preserves a cardboard box at home, so you can contact your nearest bike shop. The shop used to discard the bike boxes after they built the bikes for sale. Just let them know what kind of bike you want them to pack when you contact them. Generally, mountain bikes are bigger than road bikes and if your bike is larger, you would need a bigger bag.

Useful tools and packaging materials

For dissembling the bike properly you must need essential tools and adequate packaging materials. Along with that you should know the techniques of dismantling the bike tactfully. The tools you may require are Allen keys and Adjustable spanner. And the required packing materials are like,

  • Sturdy constructed bike box
  • Padding
  • Bubble wrapping
  • Foam tubing
  • Packaging chips
  • Extra plastic bags or small cardboard boxes
  • Clear packing tape
  • Permanent markers etc

Prepare the bike for packing

The most important tasks are to disassemble and make the parts fit in the bike box. Here are the steps listed below:

  • For some specific bike boxes you might remove both the front and rear wheel to put it inside the box whereas for large cardboard boxes it would be enough to remove the front wheel only. Detach the axle from the wheels if you don’t want to ruin the bike case.
  • Remove the pedals with a pedal wrench and immediately pack them in clear plastic bags along with the bolts. Label the packet.
  • In order to remove the handlebar, loosen the faceplate bolts. After detaching the handle from the stem reattach the faceplate bolts lightly to the faceplate stem. Try not to remove the brakes and shifter levers from the handlebar and place them carefully in the box.
  • Rotate your bike’s stem 180° by loosening the top cap bolt and steeler tube bolt and lightly tighten the bolts after reversing.
  • Remove the seat and seat post by untightening the seat tube bolts. Keep the saddle attached with the seat post.
  • Shift the bike’s chain to the small rear chain ring.
  • Eliminate the extra accessories from the bike like mudguards, lights, speedometer, water bottles etc.

Securing the bike inside the box

Fill up the bike box from the bottom with bubble wraps or packaging chips to make the empty corners compacked. Place the frame of the bike first. Keep the de-assembled handlebar vertically and then place the other  small items in different small bags or boxes. Pack the main bike frame and wheel separately. Seal the bike box with an adequate amount of packing tapes by wrapping them both horizontally and vertically.

Never forget to label the bike box as ‘Fragile‘ and also attach the pick up and delivery address along with the owner’s name and contact details to the box.

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