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I'm thinking about getting a Ritchey Breakaway bike (or a Dahon equivalent) for trips. The stock Ritchey bag/case is apparently not quite airline-legal. The folks who make S&S couplers have a nice, legal hard case, but it's pretty spendy. So the thought was to find an alternative to the S&S case, if possible. If not, I'll just get the S&S hard case.

A bit of online searching for generic 26x26x10 cases came up empty. Well, one place had them, but they are industrial and very expensive. And then I remembered the corrugated plastic (coroplast) bike box made by Colorado Cyclist. Theirs is full size, which defeats the point of a break away bike, but the concept might be sound.

I think that I could make a pretty solid bike box with two 48"x48" sheets of corrugated plastic, and maybe some scrap to reinforce edges. The main box dimensions would be 26"x26", but the 10" sides get the main raw dimensions to 46". With a few pop rivets, a few feet of nylon straps, and some foam padding inside, it seems like I can have a good airline-legal box for about $40.

Any thoughts? Am I missing some issues here? Thanks.
 

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PdxMark said:
I'm thinking about getting a Ritchey Breakaway bike (or a Dahon equivalent) for trips. The stock Ritchey bag/case is apparently not quite airline-legal. The folks who make S&S couplers have a nice, legal hard case, but it's pretty spendy. So the thought was to find an alternative to the S&S case, if possible. If not, I'll just get the S&S hard case.

A bit of online searching for generic 26x26x10 cases came up empty. Well, one place had them, but they are industrial and very expensive. And then I remembered the corrugated plastic (coroplast) bike box made by Colorado Cyclist. Theirs is full size, which defeats the point of a break away bike, but the concept might be sound.

I think that I could make a pretty solid bike box with two 48"x48" sheets of corrugated plastic, and maybe some scrap to reinforce edges. The main box dimensions would be 26"x26", but the 10" sides get the main raw dimensions to 46". With a few pop rivets, a few feet of nylon straps, and some foam padding inside, it seems like I can have a good airline-legal box for about $40.

Any thoughts? Am I missing some issues here? Thanks.
O.K., not exactly answering your question, but you said "any thoughts?" I recently thought about a Ritchey Break-away as well. They seem to get good reviews. Then I ran through the accounting. The Breakaway built up with 105 or Ultegra and halfway decent wheels will set you back $2,000 - $2,500, then add the case. I travel 2-3 times a year where I would like to take a bike. The alternative was to pay $250 for an oversize hard bike case and take my Litespeed (brushed titanium so no paint to worry about scratching) and pay the $100 per trip for oversize luggage. It would take over 10 years of flying (2.5 times a year) before the Ritchey paid for itself, more if you factor in the time value of money. So I bought the oversize case. They come with rollers so handling it through the airport is not a big deal.

If you travel a lot you may get a quicker payback, though. And I'm assuming that you've already got a road bike you could pack into a full size case. If you need a new roadbike anyway, maybe the Ritchey is the way to go if you travel a lot. If you're sure about getting the Ritchey, I'd watch e-bay for a while. I've seen a couple of Ritchey Break-away's with the S&S Case on there that went for substantially less than just a new Bike without the case.
 

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A couple of thoughts. I do a ton of travel with my Bike Friday. One of the nice things about a Bike Friday or equivalent folder is they will fit in a standard Samsonite F'lite suitcase. These suitcases sell for about $100.00 on EBay

Since it's just a suitcase my bike gets inspected about 1 every 5 times. A home made case will guarantee inspections every time. The TSA is not very careful about putting the bike back in the case.
 
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