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Howdy folks. I am planning to ride the NYC Century in September. I live in Northern California. What is the best way to get my bike back East?

Shipping: Do I ship it and have a bike shop in New York assemble it? What type of container do I ship the bike in? What shipping service is reliable and reasonably priced? How much would this option cost?

Bringing on Plane: Can I check my bike as luggage on the plane? What is the extra cost? What type of container should I pack my bike in?

Your suggestions and help are GREATLY APPRECIATED!!

Are any of you planning to ride this Century?
 

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I did it from NY to Sna Francisco. I had the bike shop take it apart and box it and mail it to an bike shop in S.F. When I got there my bike was assembled and ready to go. I just dropped off the bike when I was done in S.F. and flew home. 1 day later the bike was back at my house assembled.
 

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Phx to RI

I shipped a bike from Phoenix to Rhode Island a few years ago. I took my bike to my LBS and had them box it in one of the boxes the new bikes come in. They then shiped it UPS for me. I think it was only about $40 at the time. I was without it for about a week, so I had to ride the back-up bike (MTB) during that time.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I am going the opposite direction. What campany did you use to ship the bike and what was the cost? Did the company provide the container? What did that cost? I am looking for the most cost efficient and reliable way to do this. Thanks so much for your help.


pugdog1 said:
I did it from NY to Sna Francisco. I had the bike shop take it apart and box it and mail it to an bike shop in S.F. When I got there my bike was assembled and ready to go. I just dropped off the bike when I was done in S.F. and flew home. 1 day later the bike was back at my house assembled.
 

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dariow said:
I am going the opposite direction. What campany did you use to ship the bike and what was the cost? Did the company provide the container? What did that cost? I am looking for the most cost efficient and reliable way to do this. Thanks so much for your help.

Go online and check the prices yourself. UPS, USPS, and FedEx all have online shipping price and time calculators. Simply enter the ship from and ship to addresses and answer a few other questions and they will tell you exactly how much and how long it will take to ship. Figure for all three that your package will weigh 70 pounds. Even though your bike won't all three will bill you for about that much based on a standard bicycle box being the size that it is. If you have a shop box it for you and another rebuild it for you, figure on adding maybe as much as $40 each way. It is not hard to do yourself, but just takes a little experience to box properly so that your bike is safe and secure. By the way, most airlines charge around $80 for you to take it on the plane. But call the company ahead of time and ask them.

Good luck,

Russ
 

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I second the "check the prices" of the major shipping companies. FedEX and UPS both have a variety of priorities and services and include the all important "tracking" ability, maybe your company or you even have an account and can get a discount?

I ship my bicycle all the time, and because of this I have invested in a bicycle specific PVC luggage case that fits UPS/airline size limits. Before this though, I just went to the LBS and asked to have some of there old bicycle boxes. Usually they even came with the cardboard divider in the middle (seperating the frame from the wheels), and the plastic axel support spacers (important).

Just unmount the wheels, being sure to remove the quick-releases, remove the pedals, place in the dropout spacers, unmount your handelbars and tape/zip-tie them to the top tube, rotate your stem and also fix it to your top tube. Also while using the middle cardboard divider, zip tie your frame so that it is suspended to the divider without the large chain ring or rear derailer touching the bottom... you may then want to bubble tape your frame in some places. Finish up by double tapeing the box and placing your address on the outside with a marker (they lost my airbill one time)... and last and MOST important... make sure your bicycle is insured (VISA, home insurance, what ever)... cause you may do your best but *HIT still happens...

P.S. For future reference: when flying International, there is often no additional charge to bring your bicycle with most major carriers and there are even bicycle orginizations that have agreements with some airlines to wave the extra baggage charge for oversized items (i.e., bicycles).
 

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I would go the shipping option over taking it in the plane. With the airlines their liability is the max luggage clain which won't be enough with any hi-end bike. Plus the airlines charge will likely be more than the shipping with UPS/FEDEX/etc. You can always pay a shop to ship it but its not that big a deal to do. UPS and FEDEX can pick it up at your door. Go to your shop and get a used bike box - the same ones the manufactuer used to send it to the shop. I have found that Cannondale boxes are especially sturdy. Wrap eveything up with bubble wrap or foam. You can find bike packing instructions in some repair manuals (Bicycling's comes to mind) or perhaps online. See if you can arrange with your hotel to accept the shipment and hold it for you which makes things easier
 

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The bike store in NY let me borrow the container for the trip. It was a hard plastic case. The shipping was $68.00 each way. Insured, tracked, 2 day Fed Ex shipping. I had to pay the bike store in san Francisco $30.00 to unpack and re-pack my bike. The store in NY charged me $20.00 to pack and unpack.

Total cost w/o tip $186.00 so figure I went for $200.00. Worth every penny, not a scratch on the bike, and a tune up included at both locations. I never had to do ANYTHING but ride my bike, thats how like it.
 

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I've always taken mine as luggage in a Performance hard case

with wheels which qualifies as luggage with no extra charge. No problem to set it up at other end. If you do ship it, I found fedex much cheaper and easier to deal with than UPS.
 

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Fed Ex Ground

we ship a lot of bikes out of our shop and used to use UPS - but changed to FedEx Ground for lower price, better service, and less damage

get a bike box from a bike shop, we all throw out lots of them anyway
 
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