Carbon bikes on planes

Discussion in 'Touring and Adventure Cycling' started by rich p, 29 May 2008.

  1. rich p

    rich p ridiculous old lush

    Not strictly touring I know but I'm taking my carbon road bike on a 4 day jaunt to Provence in a few weeks. I'm nervous of it's treatment in flight having only ever taken steel on a plane before. Reassure me please!
  2. bianchi1

    bianchi1 Veteran

    Take a hard case !!
  3. Bigtallfatbloke

    Bigtallfatbloke New Member

    i heard carbon self combusts at altitude:biggrin:

    ..sorry, I know that doesnt help:smile:
  4. kyuss

    kyuss Veteran

    I've never flown with a bike before and being the paranoid freak I am I would be a bit nervous no matter what it was made of.

    But I heard a story (not sure if it's true, could quite possibly be an urban myth) about a bike shop a few years back that had a carbon frame in store that they allowed interested parties to hit with a broom handle to prove that it's not as fragile as you'd think. I've also dropped tools on the top tube of a carbon frame a few times with no adverse effects. Did the same on an aluminium frame that left it with a lovely little dent.:smile:

    Wrap it up well and it'll be fine. Well, as fine as any other frame under the circumstances.
  5. Disgruntled Goat

    Disgruntled Goat New Member

    Hard case. You'll sleep more soundly.
  6. RedBike

    RedBike New Member

    Beside the road
    I should think it would be fine while its on the plane. Loading and unloading on the other hand, errrm maybe not.
  7. I know exactly how you feel.

    When I flew (to Provence too coincidentally) last year, I was debating whether to take the carbon 'best bike' or the alu one.

    I was thinking I'd much prefer riding the carbon one, but if one was to be wrecked by the baggage-manglers I'd rather it was the alu one so perhaps I ought to take that one...?

    I decided to think positive (which would be nicer to ride ?) rather than negative (which would I rather they damaged ?) and took the carbon one - but with lots of bubble-wrap and pipe-lag in the bike bag, and my fingers-crossed !

    At Nice airport two bikes came-out first on the conveyor. Another guy's bike simply in a big plastic bag with the pedals and bars turned round, plus mine in its bag. Both look like they'd been placed carefully on the conveyor rather than dumped on it, and there was then a bit of a delay before the suitcases started coming round.

    Coming back to Liverpool however, the bike bag came-out in the middle of a big pile of holdalls and suitcases, all dusty and scuffed.

    The bike was fine though, both ways.
    (although we did meet an Australian couple in the bike shop in France trying to hire a bike for the girl, her alu bike looked like someone had tried to tie a knot in the top-tube, it was bent and curled and twisted not just dented, and Air France were not being very helpful...)
  8. OP
    rich p

    rich p ridiculous old lush

    Phew, cheers Andy. All those thoughts have gone through my head. A +ve to set against the -ves!

    Hard boxes are £2-300 which I don't have to spare at the mo.
  9. gavintc

    gavintc Guru

    I have used a soft case about 5 times for both my and my wife's bike - carbon - no problems.
  10. I've still not decided to take my carbon bike on a plane or not but if I do, it'll be one of these hard boxes they're a bit cheaper but have a good rep.
  11. Trillian

    Trillian New Member

    this probably doesn't help:

    a friend of mine is currently in morzine / les gets trying to bankrupt Easy Jet.

    he took his £3000 DH bike (many many upgrades and custom spec etc) by plane and the frame, forks, wheels, shock, bars and cranks were completely mangled despite being in a bike bag (albeit a thin one)

    easy jet have some how aggreed to pay for his daily bike rental and replacement when he gets back to the uk

    he's spent the past month renting top end DH bikes, he claims a weeks hire of an orange, a santa cruz, a brooklyn and one or two others came to over £200, he's determined that the overall hire will come to £1000
    he's got another month out there and basically using the time and cash to try out bikes he might replace his mangled one with.

    not sure how many heads he had to bash together to get that tho.
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