What to write on a bike bag to stop the baggage handlers trashing it…

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  • What to write on a bike bag to stop the baggage handlers trashing it…
  • mefster
    Member

    Bike is bagged and ready for it’s first long haul flight. I’m hoping that 6 metres of pipe lagging, lots of cardboard and copious amounts of bubblewrap will offer enough protection. I’m a little concerned it now feels so robust that it might get abused as I’ve often seen happen to ski bags (granted, Lyon Airport isn’t a centre of excellence I imagine).

    The Pinnacle bike bag:

    is quite understated, without too much to let you know it’s a bike- no ‘fragile’ or handle with care’. Don’t want too ham it up too much though in case it draws attention to it and it gets singled out for more abuse! (My God! I’m getting paranoid!)

    All suggestions of what to add onto the bag in permanent marker (amusing or otherwise) gratefully received!

    Mackem
    Member

    “Human organs in transit”

    “Charity Bike Ride – Please handle with care” has worked for me.

    As did the stencil of Darth Vaders head and “Protcted by the Dark Side” on the bike box I used in India!

    SSP

    Premier Icon stuartlangwilson
    Subscriber

    Baggage handlers deserve better wages might work?

    You will probably be fine as long as you pack properly.

    izakimak
    Member

    just hope it fits through the x-ray machine, as mine and a mates didn’t. security made us unpack them just so they could check the tyres were deflated.

    Premier Icon Onzadog
    Subscriber

    which would have been worthwhile if tyres needed to be deflated.

    Next they’ll be telling you not to use mobile phones at petrol station!

    “Next they’ll be telling you not to use mobile phones at petrol station! “

    urban myth, there is no good reason not to ue your mobile at a petrol station, unless your wandering arround not paying attention and get run over. It all started with a CCTV tape from the US, showing a ady on her phone get out the car and rmove the hose before bursting into flames. Wasn’t the phones fault, more likely a static charge from clothes/seat.

    dave_aber
    Member

    How about “**** Off baggage handlers – You’re all a bunch of careless twunts, and could never afford the expensive bike that is inside this bag”
    .
    .
    .
    That should see you right.

    Premier Icon al2000
    Subscriber

    It’s going to get smashed to bits whatever you put, so you may as well go with dave_aber’s suggestion..

    Smee
    Member

    How about “Property of John Smeaton – I’ll set in aboot ye!”

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    (My God! I’m getting paranoid!)

    Yes, you are. Stop worrying, if you’ve packed it properly, it’ll be fine.

    AndyPaice
    Member

    “caution explosives – handle with care” may work

    may take a while through customs though 😉

    falkirk_mark
    Member

    speaking as an ex baggage handler when you have X amount of bags to get on a plane on a short period of time you do not have time to read anything.The best thing is to pack the bike as well as possible and hope for the best.Bags get thrown on a plane without a second thought as to what it is (unfortunate but true)

    twohats
    Member

    “Next they’ll be telling you not to use mobile phones at petrol station! “

    urban myth, there is no good reason not to ue your mobile at a petrol station, unless your wandering arround not paying attention and get run over. It all started with a CCTV tape from the US, showing a ady on her phone get out the car and rmove the hose before bursting into flames. Wasn’t the phones fault, more likely a static charge from clothes/seat.

    The reason mobile phone use is discouraged at petrol stations has nothing to do with the danger of causing a fire whilst talking on the phone, but from the phone causing a spark if it were to be dropped whilst refuelling!

    mefster
    Member

    Some good ones there guys.

    “Human organs in transit”

    – If I had an organ as big and heavy as this it’d be in a transparent bag 😉

    Liking the Vader idea, but guessing I’ll stick to my name and ‘handle with care’!

    Jimbo
    Member

    “Explosives”?

    mudshark
    Member

    I managed to get some big bits of foam as well as the usual bubble wrap and pipe insulation; never had a problem but I do unbolt pretty much everything from the frame.

    Premier Icon matthewjb
    Subscriber

    “Contains live bees!”

    mark_b
    Member

    I just use a pink bike bag – handlers think (i hope) that it’s a ladies bike and treat it with the respect it deserves.

    Gets some odd looks when i collect it from the baggage carousel 8)

    flamejob
    Member

    Last time I came back from Spain I was watching them take our two bikes off the plans onto one of those flatbed truck things.

    The bloke took them out and carefully propped them up vertically against the cab. He then scratched his arse, rubbed his chin, laid the bike bags flat and proceeded to pile the entire plane load of suitcases on top of them.

    Cheers buddy. What a total Cock.

    IWH
    Member

    The only time I’ve had a bike damaged in transit was when I labelled it as fragile and ‘handle with care’. They managed to slam something on the front triangle so hard that it left a nice crisp fold in the tubes.

    Every other time I’ve not bothered and the bikes have been fine.

    Pack well, make sure the baggage check staff know the bike is expensive and you’ll be fine.

    twohats
    Member

    make sure the baggage check staff know the bike is expensive and you’ll be fine.

    Yep, that’ll work!

    You do realise that the check in staff won’t actually be bothered or listen to what you say to them, much less pass on your requests to the baggage handlers!!!

    IWH
    Member

    Nice selective editing there Twohats.

    I said: Pack well, make sure the baggage check staff know the bike is expensive and you’ll be fine.

    Two parts – pack well. It sounds like that has been done already.

    Inform the baggage check staff of the value – request this note is entered into the booking file so that if the worst does happen and the bike is damaged they can’t deny liability or refuse to pay as it’s too expensive.

    Some airlines will present you with a waiver / release that you’re supposed to sign and will sometimes ask you to pay extra for increased cover. Even if you don’t take this cover your checked items are covered for $3000 anyway.

    Premier Icon NZCol
    Subscriber

    Pray and/or use a hard bike case has been my proven solution.

    More than once I’ve used a bike box with padding etc, checked it in, done the “Yes it is a bike’ thing, then they say “ah OK i’ll put some Fragile stickers on it then” then they go slap slap and they say “AH dave” * the baggage guy “can you take this through please ?”
    Dave then kicks it over, ties it to the back of his little machine and drags it through the terminal before piling asmuch weight as possible on it. Its not that Dave doesn;t care, he just doesn’t need to care.

    * name madeup for the purposes of this example.

    coffeeking
    Member

    They take **** all notice of whats on it anyway. I’ve watched mine be used as ladders for gaining access to other bags, seen them thrown from the cargo opening onto the floor, seen them walked on. All you can do is pad them and cross your fingers.

    Premier Icon seven
    Subscriber

    The one thing i do, on top of the usual padding, is to use an old hub to hopefully stop the rear triangle from getting squashed, then it’s just hope. But I’ve never had a problem (but then twice is not really scientific)

    Spongebob
    Member

    Two years on the trot my bikes have been damaged in transit between London and Geneva! All thanks to those sloppy lazy baggage wrecking feckers – low pay is no excuse for trashing someone’s belongings! What are they jealous or something? No, they just couldn’t care less! My insurance did not cover the damage when i read the small print – bxxtxxds!

    The bike was bubblewrapped, but not pipe lagged the first time, i didn’t bother using lagging that time as the bike was getting old. What was frustrating is that each year prior to this it was totally protected. For years my mates have taken the mick out of me for being over careful. Of course they never bothered and they got away with it.

    The bag had clearly been stacked under a pile of other bags and the sheer weight caused the hubs(minus spindles)to pierce their wheel bags and then the bag itself. The hubs then scratched up all the paintwork on the frame. I reckon there were 20 other bags thrown on top as the fabric of these bags is very durable and well padded.

    The second time and with an almost immaculate newer frame, i used the pipe lagging once more, but it happened again!! WTF? GRRRRRRRR

    I wasn’t too bothered the first time as I was planning on a respray, but this time it’s not convenient! The frame has a small dent (as per last time), but i will probably be able to partly sand it out so it will barely show.

    I’m goint to buy a couple of those foam camping mats and cable tie them to the wrapped up bike next time (as well as making sure my insurance will cover it).

    My next bike bag will be a hard cased type.

    Spongebob
    Member

    BTW, I refit the spindles that slot through a couple of wooden frame spacers which fit in place of the wheels to protect the frame and forks.

    I also tape a large block of hard foam to the bb to protect the chainset.

    Both discs and calipers are removed, bubblewrapped and taped up.

    Brake lever clamps are loosened to allow them to rotate and then gloved up with bubble wrap.

    The frame is pipe lagged and bubble wrapped – bar one time!

    Inside a padded bag with all this care, you would have thought that the bike would be safe.

    I recommend fitting discs of flexible plastic to the wheel bags to prevent the spindles rubbing through when excess weight is piled on at airports. I will fix mine with cable ties.

    I hope you are luckier than me!

    Or maybe I won’t take my bike on the plane again!

    bigrich
    Member

    i find a bix box – i.e. carboard is better then a bag, cos its obvious what itis.

    my bikes have been to australia, and one got lost and went to bangkok and round SE asia on its own and was ok when it turned up

    coffeeking
    Member

    If its not a bag of clothes its just an inconvenience.

    Premier Icon edd
    Subscriber

    I’ve made this neat spacer to stop the baggage handlers flattening the rear triangle together. It also provides a nice place for my QR skewer to go.

    I know that I could just use an old hub/ old axle but this is neat and I like it…

    I also have a matching one for the front.

    flamejob
    Member

    Spongebob, sounds like you need those axle end disc things that bikes come packed in. I normally wang some of those on and tape them to the wheel.

    Edd those nylon things are awesome. Wish I had daily access to a lathe 🙁

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    I thinks some airports are worse than others. My bikes are usually out way before the rest of the luggage, so one can only assume they put them in last on the top – to protect them.

    theflatboy
    Member

    yo edd, you fancy making a few of those and selling them? sounds like you’d get a good few shifted on here…

    twohats
    Member

    To be honest, its not the amount of protective padding that you fit to the frame, but more about keeping components that can do damage to each other away from other components.
    If packed correctly, ie, ends of axles away from the frame and secured in place in the bag so they can’t move (I use gurt big zip ties and secure the wheels in their bags to the frame), the wheels themselves become protection for the frame doing away with the need for pipe lagging and such like. An old axle with your Q/R can be used as a frame protector to stop the rear end being squished together and remove discs from hubs to stop them getting bent.
    At the end of the day its a gamble as to whether its gonna survive the trip or not. I’ve mates who literally just drop their bikes in a bike bag and suffer no damage and others who have spent hours lovingly applying padding only for it to arrive at the other end trashed!

    Xan
    Member

    Dont write anything on it. Regardless what you write if they are in a rush they will just launch it in the cargo hold. I actually know a baggage handler and have been told stories of days that they are PO’d and make a point of trying to damage things with fragile all over it. I know this is probably the minority of them that will do this but there are some right bas***s out there!!

    STATO
    Member

    which would have been worthwhile if tyres needed to be deflated.

    true but its their rules, you can argue if you want but dont complain if they dont let your bike on the plane cos your too lazy to pump them up at the other end.

    Premier Icon crazy-legs
    Subscriber

    I’ve always been lucky with mine apart from the last time it travelled – I’d done the usual take mech off etc, everything padded as normal and somehow they bent the rear mech hanger. No idea how, it must have taken one hell of a whack *inside* the protective embrace of the wheels and a load of cardboard. About the only saving grace was it was on my way home from the holiday, not going out.
    I use all sorts of foam mats, pipe lagging, bubblewrap, everything zip tied together to stop it moving and my clothes in the side pockets of the bag to give a bit of added protection and (apart from that one occasion) it’s been fine with both road and mountain bikes.
    Tip with the tyres, only half deflate them. It give the wheels a bit of added protection.

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