Do you have in mind to travel across a foreign country by bicycle and you need to take on board your precious two-wheeled vehicle? It can be a complicated operation if you do not follow the right guidelines. The reason is that if you do not have ready to hand a correct guideline, there is the chance the bicycle reaches its destination damaged. Here is how to do it.
All the traditional airline companies (except for Lufthansa) and the low cost ones bind the passengers to wrap their bicycles. In the shops of sports equipment, you can find on sale special bags useful to the target, but those who retained the original packing of the vehicle can use it as well. For an effective do-it-yourself, the materials required to realise a packing, which protects the integrity of the bicycle the best possible, are these: paperboard, adhesive tape, plentiful bubble wrap.
Here is how to proceed:
1 – Deflate the tyres to avoid they explode at high altitude
2 – Remove the front wheel
3 – Remove the disks of the front wheel
4 – Put an aluminium pipe into the fork where the front wheel is;
5 – Envelop the fork with some rubber or plastic packing;
6 – Stop the breaks with some strings;
7 – Untie the pedals; they are juts out and can puncture the paperboard;
8 – Remove the saddle;
9 – Wrap the pedals and attach them to the bicycle, in the space next to the saddle;
10 – Turn the steering wheel on one side and fix the front wheel on the opposite side with some cables;
11 – Insert a protection in the axle of the front wheel;
12 – Remove the steering wheel;
13 – Place the steering wheel in the opposite direction of the front wheel and then wrap it with plastic packing;
14 – Put the whole into the paperboard box; be careful to seal all the sides properly;
The packing is not supposed to present empty spaces inside, in order to avoid any movement of the contents. Fill the empty space with some paper and fix with the adhesive tape. Once it reaches its destination, the packing can be kept inside the airport in the special garages (many airports offer such a service) or at least in the left-luggage, remembering to add a new roll of adhesive tape which will be needed to wrap the bicycle for the return.
Photo credits: http://www.twowheeltravelblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/bikes-in-boxes.jpg