First air trip with bike – what do I need to know ?

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  • First air trip with bike – what do I need to know ?
  • know I need a decent bag and wil probably need to remove bars and pedals

    plus remove mechs and disc rotors, brace the brake levers, shim the brake pads and space the dropouts. Pad everything. Assume your bag will be manhandled! Pack all the tools you used to strip your bike.

    Don’t worry about pressures, although they may ask you to let the tyres down at check in. Just don’t ask if the pilot does the same 😉

    Premier Icon sandwicheater
    Subscriber

    Rub your frame in marmalade before putting it into the bike bag.

    pymwymis
    Member

    G-Slave thanks for that. What do you use to brace your brake levers ?

    S-eater your answer is useless without brand or mention of thickness of cut. Lime or orange ?

    I just made a sturdy cardboard cover to protect the lever and master cylinder and stop the lever being pulled. Made me feel better anyway! Treat anything bendable as though it will be and you’ll more than likley be OK!

    Premier Icon big_scot_nanny
    Subscriber

    When you’re checking in and weighing the bike bag, be sure to jam your foot under one end, or surreptitiously keep one hand lifting a handle, to keep some weight off. 😳

    nick1962
    Member

    Wrong

    Right

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    From experience of 20 odd flights with bikes in the last couple of years…
    Evoc works
    Unless you are on the max pressure don’t let anything down, when they ask if you let the tyres down say YES of course I did.
    Rotors off
    Mech off if your using a cheap bag.

    apart from that if your using a decent bag it’s really easy.

    Premier Icon BillOddie
    Subscriber

    Unless you are happy that the bike in the bag can be chucked down some stairs without damage you need to pack it better…

    Premier Icon mikewsmith
    Subscriber

    BillOddie – Member
    Unless you are happy that the bike in the bag can be chucked down some stairs without damage you need to pack it better…

    and to that I say Evoc 🙂

    Rockhopper
    Member

    Its many many years since aircarft holds were unpressurised. They like you to let the tyres down simply to stop the bike rolling so easily.

    pymwymis
    Member

    Travelling to Alps with bike and for the first time by air. I normally just chuck the bike in the van but now I have a bunch of other stuff to consider.

    I know I need a decent bag and wil probably need to remove bars and pedals but the stuff I’m concerned about generally relates to the unpressurised hold and how it affects the various hydraulic bits and stuff under pressure eg. Tyres, brakes, reverb.

    I run tubeless but I guess I’ll have to let them down for transit – would it be wise to pop one side off the rim ?

    Brakes – other than putting a spacer between the calipers is there anything I should know ?

    Reverb – is this pressurised ? Should it be down or up or doesn’t it matter ?

    Anything else ?

    Premier Icon Radioman
    Subscriber

    I used an Evoc “soft” bike bag for the first time to travel here in Spain with easy jet. It the best bag I have ever used.

    All I needed to do was . Remove pedals, remove handlebar from stem, lower seat(reverb so easy), and slightly lower tyre pressure and put wedges in brake callipers. I also unscrewed the rear mech although that wasn’t really necessary. .. . No extra padding was needed.

    The Disc rotors could stay on!!! Superb really quick to pack(about 10mins) . This is the first bag I have used where disc rotors can stay on!

    The only “extras” needed was a rag and a spare pair of tyres for extra padding.

    Premier Icon rugbydick
    Subscriber

    I was in France a couple of weeks ago and one of the other riders had an Evoc bag. He arrived to find a bent rotor.

    Always remove your rotors regardless of which bag you use.

    smashit
    Member

    Two tips from flying with bike lots and guiding lots of international bike trips.

    1. take rotors of 100%
    2. if you want to still have tubeless wheels in the alps DO NOT fully deflate them! You’ll just end up with a bag full of sticky latex and spend an hour trying to get them to seal with a trackpump …before giving up and putting tubes in!!!

    Milkie
    Member

    …unpressurised hold and how it affects the various hydraulic bits and stuff under pressure eg. Tyres, brakes, reverb.

    Considering aircraf tyres can be >120psi and they don’t let them down when they take off, your tyres will be fine. 😉 Your brakes should be fine, if they do leak then you already had a problem with them and would’ve noticed on a previous ride. I don’t know of anyone that has let pressure out of forks for flights except for to get the things in the bag/box.

    Pack the bag well, I used my pads and some clothes to protect some areas, seat stays, forks, etc.

    EVOC for the win. 😉

    atlaz
    Member

    General advice that you never see is to make sure the bike is clean. Some countries are quite difficult about dirty bikes and potential bugs that may bring with it (bloke I met in Singapore had a long customs experience taking a slightly muddy MTB into Australia). For the alps though, the French/Swiss won’t care.

    Yetiman
    Member

    I don’t travel abroad as much as I used to so I still use and old Neil Pryde padded bag and a lot of extra padding, but if I was travelling regularly again I’d definitely be investing in an Evoc bag.

    Premier Icon Pawsy_Bear
    Subscriber

    Fly loads with bike. Takes ten mins to shove it in Evoc. Don’t let anything down no need. I recommend air in your tyres, will protect the rim. Reverb I just shove down. Planes are completely pressurised.

    At check in you check in both hold and bike bags. Then take bike bag to oversize check in. Collect everything other end. Sometimes oversize stuff ends up on separate area.

    You have bought sports bag for cycle extra baggage allowance (some are free on long haul but limited to 23kg) and it’s within the weight limit.. Easyjet weight limit is 32kg.

    The overall strategy I adopt is to fit in with the airlines sausage system. If you do you go through no issues.

    Premier Icon Radioman
    Subscriber

    Key with rotor removal on an Evoc bag is which way round you put the wheels in. If you put the rotors on the inside then no problem . Spokes would be smashed before damage got to the rotor.

    Obviously common sense needed just as with tyre pressures. To bend a rotor on the rear side of the spokes , the rotor would need to be in contact with something solid e.g the bike frame. On my bike that does not happen so no need for rotor removal.

    Well done Evoc. I had another German designed bike bag previously that lasted me many years ( over 10). When I first flew with bikes there was no need to buy expensive bike bags and the airlines generally took bikes free but the airlines were keen to raise revenue when they saw the increasing rate of bike travel going on.

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