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Shipping Reference Guide: For the weird items

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Shipping Reference Guide: For the weird items

Old 01-23-22, 02:10 PM
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Shipping Reference Guide: For the weird items

I think most folks have shipped things using the Priority mail boxes, but for those items that are somewhat odd, perhaps a reference guide for peeps...I would happily update the first post as people add items as best as I can.

Mostly, for me, how do you ship handlebars and a fork most cheaply...? But others might benefit from the group.
22" frame and under (31X 30 X 8)
22 and over...good luck.

--I shipped two in a box to Mad Honk that were 62cm and 54cm. I think it was 50X32X9 or 10
--25" Trek sent to Gary12000 ...cannot remember.
--If pastorbobnlnh happens to have kept the box, he might be able to measure the box of a set of wheels that I sent snugly
--Single wheel (29X29X7)
Handle bars
--Road drops
1987 Crest Cannondale, 1987 Basso Gap, 1992 Rossin Performance EL, 1990ish Van Tuyl, 1980s Vanni Losa Cassani thingy, 1985 Trek 670, 1982 AD SLE, 2003 Pinarello Surprise, 1990ish MBK Atlantique, 1987 Peugeot Competition, 1987 Nishiki Tri-A, 1981? Faggin, Cannondale M500, etc...Need to do an N -1...

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Old 01-23-22, 02:23 PM
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Subscribed. GREAT idea for a thread.
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Old 01-23-22, 02:45 PM
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No matter what I am shipping, I usually cut a box to fit the item inside. Handlebars are pricey because the length + girth elevates postal costs and FedEx or Puralator are out of the question. Forks can also be pricey, and the post office wanted close to $70.00 CND to send this set to Australia (I live in Canada usually)...

I managed to get this Bianchi into a box 40" long x 29" high x 9" wide...

To get the bike into that box meant removing wheels, handlebar/stem, saddle/seat post and drive side crank. Cost to ship 1000 miles (approx) was $127.00 CND. Had I not removed the rear wheel, the box would have been 56" long, jumping the shipping cost to $214.00 CND and I would have been forced to use FedEx or Puralator because the box size would exceed postal limits.

In short, make the box as small as you can to reduce shipping cost.
"98% of the bikes I buy are projects".
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Old 01-23-22, 03:23 PM
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I've had handlebars arrive in perfect condition just wrapped in paper. One set from jolly old England.

I cut down a bike box from the LBS for wheels. They never give me wheel boxes, too uncommon and they use them all of the time. Had a set of wheels sent to me from France sandwiched by 2 pieces of cardboard, taped along the perimeter. Solid axles popped through of course, but they arrived in perfect condition.

I shipped a fork only once. Used a fully threaded bolt to secure the ends, made a box. It is easy to make a box.
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Old 01-23-22, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by iab View Post
They never give me wheel boxes, too uncommon and they use them all of the time
Agreed but it's not uncommon for them to throw them out even after refusing to save one for you. I go bin diving (unlocked shed) at my local LBS all the time, if only to get the great cardboard. E bike boxes are huge.

This is a great time of the year (under normal circumstances) to get packing material. Spring inventory is arriving, if available.
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Old 01-23-22, 04:23 PM
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When I shipped my frame to Franklin for painting , I went to Trek and they gave me a box and I cut it down to fit. With insurance it was about $90 each way. Jack returned the frame after paint in the same box . I think cutting the box to better fit saved me $30 give or take. I used Bikeflights .
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Old 01-23-22, 05:54 PM
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I've fit up to 25 inch frame and fork into a 108" box. I did have to dismantle the bike box, rebuild it shoe box style (bottom with a lid) to get the width of the box down to 7 inches. Just shipped a 22 inch road frame and fork in a 23x8x38 box. Fork has to be removed first and it straddles the ST. The postage break is not just 108" or less. Getting it down to 100 inches total cut the postage in HALF. That being said, its a PITA.

And in the world of shipping, its girth plus length. Girth = the two shortest measurements, doubled, then add length.

If you look at my fold measurements, I was shooting for 22 high, it grew a little in packing to about 22 1/4, which in the land of Fed Ex, is rounded up. Bike boxes at the LBS are often 8 1/2 inches wide (rounds up to 9 inches) or 9 1/2 inches wide, or even higher. Juvenile bike boxes are often 7 1/2 inch wide.

The "best" deal I ever got was shipping a frame to Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada (from my home in NC. 25 inch frame and fork, box built shoe box style, right at the 108 inch limit. Sent USPS Priority, $85.....You are talking almost 6,000 kilometers.

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Old 01-23-22, 06:02 PM
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One thing I ship A LOT are cranksets. If you build a box around the drive side arm, attach the non drive arm, you can fit it in a priority mail flat rate padded envelope. I've sent cranksets all the way to Hawaii for under $9. I use a lot of padded flat rate envelopes. By printing postage on line, anything 16 ounces or less can go first class mail (within the USA), Thats your cheapest option. Cross over the 16 ounce mark, I will either use the letter sized flat rate envelope (cheaper), or the padded flat rate envelope. Just mailed out a set of combination wrenches in a flat rate letter envelope.

Just sent out a set of 26'r wheels today. 23-14-24. Was shooting for 23 square, but the box grew on me. Wanted to get it 12 inch high, that was a non-starter. Nutted axles, so that made wheels just that much wider.

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Old 01-24-22, 08:34 AM
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I worked in the parts department at a car dealership that shipped A LOT of parts around the US and for odd sized parts we always cut a box to fit the contents as tight as possible. Sometimes the dimensions are unavoidable and shipping was expensive. Math is math.

I have shipped one bike and I donít think Iíll ever do it again. I managed to score a bike box and I zip tied things together so they wouldnít shift but it was a ton of work. I knew the box would be toast by the time it arrived and hopefully the stuff inside was undamaged.

I ordered a set of wire bead tires from the Netherlands for less than $50 and I have no idea how the seller made a profit.
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Old 01-24-22, 04:02 PM
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Oh my gosh - very timely thread. I've been selling a bunch of parts and the shipping on handlebars is killer. I did the same thing other folks have suggested, making a custom box to fit with the tightest wiggle room possible, but I do also want to make sure stuff is well padded when I sell it. It's very easy to spend 20 bucks shipping handlebars that you may only sell for 50. Smaller stuff I like to just use the flat rate packaging because it's easier, even if you lose a dollar or two. And I'd rather use the boxes than the envelopes because I feel like it's easier to make sure stuff arrives intact in a rigid box.
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Old 01-25-22, 05:36 AM
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My experience shipping handlebars requires my local friends and family to save used shipping materials for me. Typically, I take two of the medium bubble wrap envelopes to cover both halves, then use a sleeve of the poly bagging material. I was rejected once for using First Class, so I use Priority now. At typical packaged weight of 13 oz, this normally is less than $9. I will add photos next time I ship.
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Old 01-25-22, 06:53 PM
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I sent a fixed gear wheel and parts out today in a wheel box from my LBS 26'' X 26" X7" for $22 via ship bikes. A tough size to find but every so often my LBS comes through for me. Smiles, MH
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